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The February 2, 2013 New York Times Small Business section had an article titled, “How Much Training Do Sales Representatives Need?” The author gave some examples of companies that put salespeople in the field and expected (positive results). One owner commented, “We have a sales deck, we have a whole sponsor proposal,” as if a sales deck and proposal assures sales.

I say that sales people need training. Good salespeople also, always, need reinforcement. It’s the nature of the person. They need to understand the intricacies of what they’re selling, product training.

And, just as important, they need motivation. Good salespeople are driven by results and, especially the best ones, thrive on constant attention, reinforcement and goals. I’d be wary of any salesperson who says they don’t need training, motivation or rewards. They are, as Tom Hopkins said many years ago, those who want “the worst paying easy work” there is.

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