“When we chose sales training programs and sales coaching based on the Action Selling system, my hope was that we would be able to translate a higher percentage of our pipeline into business,” says Lori Meredith, director of sales for Knowledge Learning Corp. (KLC), the parent of KinderCare Learning Centers. “To my pleasant surprise, it not only did that, it dramatically shortened our sell cycle.”

She points to the case of Odell Kennedy, director of school partnerships in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Kennedy started with KLC in an inside sales capacity and later was promoted to outside sales, Meredith says. In his first year, he didn’t make goal.

“Then Odell experienced a sales training course based on Action Selling, and things changed,” Meredith says. “Within three months he had closed a deal valued at $1.3 million. Before we began this sales training program and followed up with sales coaching, this type of deal took 12 to 18 months to close.”

If your sales training courses aren’t resulting in a faster sales cycle, you’re using the wrong sales training—and teaching the wrongsales skills.

Are your sales training programs speeding up your sales cycle?

When sales training and sales coaching are based on a great sales system, such as Action Selling, and salespeople come to understand the system on a deep level and use it with precision, they don’t just win more business, they win it faster.

What is it about the system, exactly, that allows reps to get deals done in less time and with fewer meetings? Here is the precise answer: All of it. You must use all of Action Selling and you must use it in every interaction with every customer.

It starts with Act 1: Your Plan to Win. This is where you set your Commitment Objective, prepare your Questions Plan, and create a vision for how the sale will advance.

Setting the right Commitment Objectives is a critical sales skill. Because a truly professional sales call always starts with a Commitment Objective, it ends far more often with a commitment gained.

Your Questions Plan (creating one is another critical sales skill) will include queries in all of the right categories to keep the process moving forward: questions to uncover Best Value Needs and others to uncover issues that will determine your sales strategy. That includes involving all of the right decision-makers in your sales process.

When you use a great sales system with precision, you leave nothing to chance. Your time and the customer’s time will be used far more productively. You’ll sell to the right people and do it with fewer meetings. You’ll get more business moving through your pipeline, and it will flow more quickly.

What made the difference to Odell Kennedy? He not only practiced the sales skills he learned in the sales training program but became a “tenacious user” of the sales system upon which the training was based, Meredith says. His sales calls were meticulously planned and executed using the process. “Odell told me that this sales training course was the best thing ever for his career,” she says.

For information about how to improve sales skills and make sales training pay huge dividends, contact Action Selling at (800) 232-3485.

Duane Sparks

About Duane Sparks

Duane Sparks is founder and chairman of The Sales Board, the authoritative source of practical and leading-edge information about the art and science of selling.  He has created Action Selling sales training products and learning systems that transform sales organizations.  Duane is author of these best-selling books: Action Selling, Selling Your Price, Questions (the Answer to Sales), Masters of Loyalty (How to turn your sales force into a loyalty force), and Sales Strategy from the Inside Out (How complex selling really works).

Discover how the best sales training process can make spectacular improvements in sales skills. Action Selling: How to Sell Like a Professional (Even If You Think You are One).