How Is Sales Coaching Different From Sales Training?

For any sales team, sales training is an invaluable tool to boost sales, improve motivation and develop skills. But sales coaching takes sales training to a whole new level.

Although both sales coaching and sales training work with sales professionals to build capability and overcome problematic areas, sales coaching is usually directed towards individuals, more experienced sales staff or small, focussed group coaching sessions.

In fact, one to one sales coaching is probably the most powerful tool in your sales training arsenal. And here are just some of the reasons why:

  • Sales coaching doesn’t let any member of the team hide behind others in the room, which can often happen in a group training workshop. It allows those that really want to learn to take a fast track approach to sales skills development as well as being a real push to those that need personal help.
  • Focussed approach and time efficient. With only one or two people on a course, sales coaching can really get to the root cause of a sales-related problem or provide training in the one skill area where it is most needed. This prevents anyone from feeling their time was wasted on any of the agenda items in a normal group training session.
  • Sales coaching sessions are usually carried out at regular intervals. This gives sales staff the chance to put their learning into practice and feedback at the next session, maybe a month later. Therefore, sales coaching is completely driven by targets and results, addressing issues as they happen. Sometimes with an annual sales training session, problems can be forgotten in-between classes and follow ups aren’t as frequent as they need to be.
  • Appeals to senior or experienced staff. This is because sales coaching is precise and motivational and could be ideal for employees who have been in an organisation for a long time, helping them develop fresh and inspiring methods.
  • With one to one sales coaching, there are no other colleagues or employees in the room to judge you on poor performance or honesty. This allows for a truthful, non-threatening and productive environment where any all sales related issues can be addressed.
  • Rapid turnaround in sales effectiveness. Sales coaching looks at how to make sales staff as effective as possible and how to do this quickly. This makes coaching a real investment, with employees seeing measurable results in next to no time.

The one to one sales coaching environment has the scope to be more focussed, goal orientated and immediately successful than other forms of sales training. Sales training certainly has its place, especially with larger sales teams where it can be incredibly rewarding, but for the next level in sales skill development, sales coaching simply cannot be beaten.

The importance of finding strengths and resolving weaknesses in individual members of the sales team and addressing them quickly cannot be underestimated.  Sales coaching is motivational, engaging and will benefit the productivity and scope of the sales team almost instantly.

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