It’s a natural assumption that setting high goals will lead to high results. That’s not always the case though. Sometimes, unrealistic expectations can demoralize your team. Sales is a tough job to begin with, and you don’t want your staffers giving up before they begin. Appropriate targets are one way to facilitate this. And an interesting way to define ‘appropriate aim’ is to have your trainees do it themselves. Let’s explore a few tactics you can apply, both as a manager and a content developer, to encourage personalized goal setting in sales online training.
7 Ways To Add Goal-Setting Personalization To Sales Training
1. Start With Small Increments
Sales managers like to work with percentages and statistics. They’re more exciting and appear more drastic than they are. At the individual level, those abstract numbers and symbols don’t mean much. A 15% raise isn’t very helpful when it’s less than $50. Instead, develop goal-setting parameters. Don’t just throw out figures like 200% or 200,000. Get your team to pick a number using fact-based guidelines. For example, the figure quoted could add up to twenty extra sales. So, if they’re currently aiming at one closing a day, ask them to look for just one extra customer. If they succeed, that’s already 5 new customers every week.
2. Offer A Concrete System
Sales goals aren’t always about monetary figures, though that’s how bosses gauge them. At the individual level, get your sales trainees to base their numbers on other criteria. For example, as a training assignment, ask them to pitch five people in their immediate family. These could be siblings, parents, or kids. The next week, they should try out their pitch on fellow co-workers in different departments. This gives a more tangible plan of action than propositioning faceless figures. They can even test out their sales skills and track their progress with simulations and scenarios. Especially if they’re followed by personal feedback that allows employees to monitor their goals. Such as how much they’ve improved their negotiation skills over the past month based on how many virtual deals they’ve closed.
3. Create A Checklist For Your Sales Team
Segmentation is a key part of sales training. It offers your team a template they can use. If they know what appeals to certain demographics, they can categorize sales prospects and decide on the best approach. Teach them how to profile their targets ahead of time. By the time they’re making that cold call or booking that appointment, they need a game plan. They should be prepared with the target’s age, gender, geographical region, education level, employment status, and interests.
4. Suggest Scripted Questions
Give them tips on filling out that profile through casual conversation. Before making their pitch, your trainee should know as much as possible about their target. Since we’re on the subject of personalized goal setting, they should also have a goal for that particular conversation. Where do they want it to go? Do they want a phone number, birthday, email address, or assurance of a site visit? This puts salespersons in a better frame of mind. It calms them and helps them get the job done.
5. Launch A Badge-Based Rewards System
The kind of people who enjoy sales have innate competitive streaks. Use this in your training. Set up friendly competitions with leader boards, badges, and chances to level up. They can get bragging rights when they reach a certain number of customers. Or when they hit a certain cash target. The program should be optional because some people freeze under that kind of pressure. It can be helpful for trainees who thrive on one-up-man-ship. Rewards shouldn’t always be monetary, but it can be a percentage raise in commission. Badges are also a great way to track personal improvement and performance indicators.
6. Make It SMART
Specific, measurable, actionable, relevant, time-bound. SMART goals. They’re far more effective than zero-sum goals. Train your team to work with details. They’re not aiming for ‘more leads’. They want four more leads a week. And they should have a system for doing it e.g. make three extra calls every day. Or reach out to social media contacts. Relevance is a little harder to gauge, but it can be achieved by customer segmentation. Your goals are actionable if they’re do-able. For example, shorten the length of your call script, allowing trainees to increase daily call volumes.
7. Incorporate Personal Progress Bars
Sometimes long-term goals seem next to impossible because there are so many tasks involved. But you can give your sales employees a visual reminder of how far they’ve come (and where they headed) with goal-based progress bars. They set their own long-term goal in the beginning, then break it down into manageable milestones. The progress bar allows them to tackle each task or short-term goals on its own. For example, the first stop is improving their cold call success rates by a certain percentage over the next month. They’ll be able to fuel their own motivation by checking item-by-item off the list instead of focusing solely on the finish line.
Setting sales goals may seem like an easy task. Bosses certainly seem to think so. But setting the wrong targets sets your team up to fail. Instead, use your online training models to help them aim better. Start with small, attainable increments, with specific steps on how to implement those increments. Give them a sales checklist, and question templates for gathering customer data. This data aids segmentation. Install a voluntary leader board for sales scores, and make sure all goals are SMART. These tips will boost morale, enhance sales activities, and raise the bottom line.
Successful sales online training strategies don’t stop at skill-building and personalized goal setting. Perfect Your Product Training Program: Everything You Need To Boost Sales And Retain Top Performers features tips to launch your own product knowledge training program to increase sales and employee retention.