Training takes a person from where he is to where he should be. The objective of training is to enable the salesman to perform his job much better. Certain amount of training is required for all types of salesmen.
Advantages of Training Salesmen
Salesperson Training offers the following advantages:
1. It imparts sales knowledge to the trainees.
2. It enables them to acquire the skill necessary, particularly, communication skill.
3. It enhances the confidence level of the salesman.
4. Needless to say, the volume of sales will increase if the organization has trained salesmen.
5. Better control can be exercised over the activities of the salesmen who are properly trained.
6. Training also reduces the time that the salesman has to spend with each customer.
7. Complaints against salesmen also become less.
8. Even if the concern has only a few salesmen, who are fully trained, committed, and efficient, it can perform the selling activity effectively.
9. Trained salesmen will be able to answer all the queries raised by the customers. This maximizes customers’ satisfaction.
10. Finally, training helps the salesman to understand the need to maintain good rapport with the customers. This secures goodwill for the business.
Methods of training salesmen
Companies usually adopt the following methods to train salesmen.
1. Induction or Orientation training
Such a training is given to those salesmen who have been just appointed. The object of induction training is to familiarize the salesman with the organization, its goals and policies. He may be taken to the various sections and departments and introduced to the employees there. The nature of his duties will be explained to him.
2. In-house training
It refers to training given to a salesman within the organizational premises. He may, for example, be put under an experienced salesman who will teach him the basics of selling.
3. On-the job training
Unlike. all other employees of a concern, whose job is confined to the four walls, a salesman has to do his job mainly outside the organizational premises. He has to be introduced to the clients of the business. For this, he has to accompany the senior salesmperson when they visit such clients.
The trainee salesman will observe them and thereby learn all the techniques of selling. This will help him later when he himself calls on certain new customers.
4. Off-the job training
The trainee salesman may also be sent to certain training centres or institutes established for training salesmen.
5. Apprenticeship training
An apprentice is a trainee who works under a professional. His job is to assist the latter in his work. A salesman may, for example, assist a sales manager in the latter’s work.
The sales manager may ask him to meet any client or prepare a sales report. The payment made to an apprentice during the period of his training is known as ‘stipend’.
6. Classroom training
In this method of training, salesmen will assemble in a particular place during the training period. Such a place will resemble a classroom. A person, experienced in selling, will give them the necessary instructions. Such a method is also known as the ‘lecture method’.
In this case, a situation is artificially created and the salesman will be asked to act in the manner he would have acted had it been a real situation. Each trainee is exposed to such situations and his actions are observed. Later, the shortcomings are pointed out.
8. Case study
Such a method is suitable for those salesmen who have understood the basics of selling. The salesmen are divided into groups. A
particular problem is given to all. Each group will discuss it and come out with solutions. Later, the solutions are analyzed. This enables every salesman to get a correct idea of the problem as well as the solution.