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Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
Brand Focused-Training
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Brand Focused-Training

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Brand-Focused Training Alters Your Team’s Perspective and Leads to Game-Changing Results

Brand-Focused Training Alters Your Team’s Perspective and Leads to Game-Changing Results

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  • 1. WHITE PAPER: What’s covered in this white paper: : A look at today’s top sales challenges : The reasons why typical sales training does not provide ROI : The four crucial elements of successful sales training : How neuroscience based training programs ensure sustainable change : Why leading by example is essential to any sales training success Brand-Focused Training Alters Your Team’s Perspective and Leads to Game-Changing Results HOTEL SALES TRAINING CAN ELEVATE YOUR SALES TEAM INTO AN AMAZING POSITION OF POWER – ONCE FOUR CRUCIAL ASPECTS ARE ADDRESSED… High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET
  • 2. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 2 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET The role of a sales person has changed considerably over the years. In 2012, according to a report published by Fleishman-Hillard, “89% of consumers turned to Google, Bing or another search engine to find information on products, services or businesses prior to making purchases”. That same year, CEB reported “57% of the purchase is completed by the buyer before interacting with the seller”. Customers today are able to approach the buying process from a perspective of power; they have diagnosed their own “pain,” and require an effortless buying experience and a curator of content to mitigate buying risk. Sales approach has shifted dramatically from aggressive, powerful and pushy (40 years ago) to “relationship” and solution provider (20 years ago), to that of being a comforting, insightful virtual bridge, a source of knowledge and a collaborative trusted advisor. Buyers today don’t need to be sold, informed or diagnosed. Rather they need authentic advocates who can demonstrate an understanding of their needs, provide the support and education that enables them to make informed, knowledge-based decisions and help them feel confident and calm with their choice. Sales training that does not take these significant shifts into consideration cannot deliver what is needed to take a sales team to the next level. Accelerating technology, communication trends and changing buying styles have not bypassed the hospitality industry, and hotel sales face additional unique challenges. The expectations are high to drive revenue despite: • an ever increasing supply of competition, • stabilization of demand, and in some cases • tired, worn products that are in dire need of upgrades and renovation. Without fresh skills to adapt to the ever-changing purchasing dynamics of prospects and procurement officers, meeting planners, corporate clients and third-party agencies, heightened activity is simply
  • 3. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 3 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET that — activity, followed by frustration about leads that are not converted and business results that cannot be achieved. Hotel sales has entered a new era. It’s not that they aren’t trying. Sales professionals want to exceed their numbers and beat the competition. But with limited real time communication, online eRFP leads — half-completed and demanding attention hours ago, social selling mandates, and learning how to speed date at the sound of the hosted buyer bell, sales people are working harder to deliver the results their Executive Committees, Hotel Managers and Owners demand. When converted leads and profitable referrals don’t follow, it is not surprising that questions arise among leaders: Do we have the right sales and management teams in place? Would new blood adjust and manage the new reality better to ensure sales keep pace? An untrained sales team is pretty much like any other untrained team. It’s out-of-shape, out-of-date and out of options. Realizing just what an impact well trained and highly skilled teams can have on their bottom line, VPs and Directors of Sales heavily invest in training. And yet, these efforts stand in harsh contrast to the results of training programs. Studies show that despite the efforts, the return on training investment leaves much to be desired. “US spending on corporate training grew by 15% last year.” Josh Bersin, Corporate Learning Factbook 2014 Organizations in the U.S. spent: $164.2 billion on learning and development $1,195 on average per employee 30.3 hours of average training per employee 57.7 hours each were averaged in “best” organizations ATD (Association for Talent Development) State of the Industry report, released in December 2013
  • 4. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 4 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET Research also indicates that following the productivity increase of a sales training program, on average 3 months later, activities and motivation return to pre-training levels. “Knowledge is power only if man knows what facts not to bother with.” -- Robert Lynd, Irish writer Typical sales training can never work. It’s doomed to failure. Sounds like a paradox? And particularly unexpected coming from an organization that provides sales training. But picture this: New competitors have entered your market and are offering opportunistic and unsustainable pricing. Everyone turns towards the new product and your numbers are suffering. Pressure builds, your sales team is stressed and distressed, and sales training seems to be a great option to solve the problem. You schedule a mandatory training program — Charm school! — and for a few days after, everyone is energized and buzzed (well nearly everyone… that “seasoned” sales person knew from the get go that this was just going to be another “flavor of the month” and spent most of her day checking “very important” emails instead of participating) and then gradually, the enthusiasm and motivation needed to implement and sustain change dies down. Your “newbies” struggle to apply what they learned and the experienced sales people go back to their known, comfortable and ineffective strategies. The cycle starts again, except those with talent don’t want to go down so they jump ship, employing the skills you just paid for them to learn, elsewhere… Sales training programs too often follow the cycle of short-lived enthusiasm and energy, followed by stagnation and resignation, not because the team isn’t eager to learn, but 5.1 weeks after a sales training program, half of the content is lost. 90 days after, on average, 84% of sales training content is lost. 67% of sales professionals do not obtain their individual quotas. 50% close less than 40% of qualified leads. According to a published study of Software Sales performance specialist TAS Group
  • 5. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 5 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET because it’s based on an approach that claims that everything old is bad and everything new is good. Yes, there are many outdated sales methodologies but mainly what sales people need to know is how to build on their knowledge to why their success pivots on making the buying experience appealing and effortless for today’s buyer. Sales training does not meet the needs of today’s buyers, if it: • Focuses on sales skills instead of buyer experiences • Is generic, off-the-shelf and interchangeable for products and brands • Talks about demonstrating pain instead of demonstrating understanding of need • Claims that either: a) relationship selling is dead or b) sales follow relationships • Suggests that buyers don’t really know what they want • Expects sales people to push, push, push • Provides scripts that must be followed • Hasn’t changed since 2008 With a nod to Jeff Foxworthy: You know your sales training might be oh so 2008 if: • you’d be embarrassed for your customers and clients to see the training materials or hear the strategies being advocated to sell to them. • the customization is primarily <insert your company name here> • is built around a unique, never- before-known to mankind perspective
  • 6. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 6 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET Sales training focused on creating insightful solutions targeted to the unique needs of buyers will make all the difference. A well-designed training program that is brand-tailored and focuses on building on existing knowledge can indeed achieve amazing outcomes. In a recent training program for the Mandarin Oriental Hotel brand, titled “Communicating 21st Century Luxury with Oriental Charm”, participants were asked if they felt more prepared to authentically convey the essence of their brand. With one exception, all respondents agreed that sales training made a positive impact on their sales performance (Fig1). More than anecdotal “feelings” however, good training drives results, sales and success. A full 65% of respondents booked more business as a direct result of new selling skills (Fig 2).
  • 7. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 7 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET What then does successful training look like? It applies four crucial elements that will help change perspective and behavior and create the shift needed to move to the next level. • Create a powerful “why,” • Deliver honest, relevant, authentic, immediately applicable content, • Design a respectful training process and • Lead by example. Creating a powerful “why” Today’s learners don’t just want to be engaged; they must be. Busy, competitive sales people may say that all they want are “just the templates, please” yet what they really need is to understand how and why they’ll benefit from doing things differently. Starting with “Why?” and enabling them to answer that question for themselves is fundamental for success. Stop telling them why they’re there and start asking them to consider the possibilities: Why do this? What would it mean if I took a different, fresh approach to selling? What am I doing that isn’t yielding great results? What is? How can I build on what I know to interact with today’s buyers in the way they want to do business?
  • 8. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 8 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET Even mandated training can be successful when participants understand, for themselves — not because they’re told — what they stand to gain from participating, learning and applying their new skills. Engage your team before the training starts. Pre-work in the form of reading blog posts and tweeting key points learned or questions formed, watching or creating You-Tube videos, and answering on-line surveys or polls can elevate the “why” to create a winning learning environment that propels and sustains learning. Successful sales training begins by building on success, not changing everything everyone is doing. It starts by collaborating with the sales team and leaders. Delivering honest, relevant, fun and immediately applicable content “Off-the-shelf” and “sales training that lasts” are rarely heard in the same breath. When the training is the same for every client, regardless of how attractive it may appear, it isn’t effective. Personalization, customization, aligning with distinctive and unique brand attributes, building on the team’s strengths and mitigating their weaknesses — bespoke training is pivotal to provide a return on your investment. Since this approach develops dynamically through collaborative conversations, research and pre-work directly from the team, it has another huge advantage — important stakeholders are actively involved, and a maximum practical level of consistency is achieved. A training program based on the idiosyncrasies of the product will build on the team’s confidence and strengthen it further. Just as prospects aren’t interested in features or benefits that won’t impact them, sales team’s aren’t likely to be interested or inspired by methodologies that are not practical, transparent, relevant and authentic. This is not to suggest that sales training shouldn’t push sales people out of their comfort zone. That is exactly what it should do. Rather, expecting sales people to apply fake “selling” skills — anything that seems pushy,
  • 9. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 9 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET slimy or cheesy — should have died out with the Benjamin Franklin close. But then, some folks still think that is what selling is about; tricking the buyer into saying yes, manipulating them by overcoming their objections, and in general acting as if the buyer is, if not stupid, slow. Invite your team to co-create the content by submitting “here is what I struggle with/here is what I would like to improve” examples as the basis for training. And add fun! Gamification is one of the easiest and most compelling ways to ensure tangible results are achieved. According to a 2013 report published by Training Industry.com, organizations that included gamification in their sales coaching training programs were rated “very effective” ...… “more than four times as often as those that were not rated very effective (see Figure 1). Successful training programs are highly customized. They are based on research, on the assessment of a team’s strengths and weaknesses, and on the insights provided. Source: Training Industry.com, Ken Taylor, April 2, 2014
  • 10. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 10 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET Designing a respectful training process Changed behaviors and transformed habits don’t happen overnight. In fact, even as we seek out new ideas, we tend to look for proof of the acceptability of our comfortable, old ways of doing things. This phenomenon even includes attempts to ignore and contradict ideas. Whether it’s called “confirmation bias,” the “cost of competence,” the “curse of knowledge,” the “Einstellung effect,” it’s just hard to change a habit. Usually, participants leave sales training eager and determined to make behavior changes. The motivation is high and the new ideas fresh in their minds. But continuing is the hard part. Maintaining the new skills, especially when they don’t yield instantaneous results, requires added, time-consuming thoughtfulness while the older, easier, comfortable ways beckon. Initiating new thinking seems like it is the most challenging part, but it is sustaining the change that truly requires the most effort. That’s why sales training that is designed by incorporating the latest neuroscience research has a distinct advantage. Respectful, results driven sales training builds in maintenance and mentoring. Whether follow-up comes in form of a designated team member as the to-go to expert, trainer facilitated webinars, motivational gamification, contests, challenges, virtual office hours, or additional training — for sales training to result in better selling, training must be designed as a process rather than an event. Successful sales training is a process not an event. It is based on the reality that relapse to old behavior is inevitable without follow-up and a continuous learning process.
  • 11. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 11 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET Leading by example There is not enough time in the day to get it all done. So when the training dates arrive, it’s easy to introduce the speaker, wish the team well and exit the room. With so much to accomplish and constant fire drills, leaders can appear too busy to attend training and too distracted when they do. But here’s the thing. When the frontline is sent to training and management doesn’t participate fully, the message is loud and clear. “Do as I don’t. Training is important, kind of. My time is more valuable than yours. Other things are more important”. Directors of Sales and other sales leaders are uniquely positioned to influence their teams. Teams watch and model what they see. Setting a table in the back of the room so that management can observe without getting dirty can be even worse than not attending; a death knell for successful training. Not only is the team aware they are being monitored, but they clearly see that they aren’t really a team at all. Sales training experts spend all their time researching, curating and doing. Without the responsibility of having to lead a team, they focus on just one thing: how to bring knowledge the team needs at this moment to sell more, more easily. Working through new concepts with reports, colleagues and managers, questioning and applying fresh behaviors as a team, sends a powerful and profitable message: We can and we should do this. It’s worth the time and effort. When buy-in is expected, everyone needs to participate, not just those who “have to go to training.” But other benefits reveal themselves, too. When the team participates together, they know they will be
  • 12. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 12 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET expected to perform and produce; they know they’ll be held accountable. And they know they’ll be supported through their struggles and learning and success. Successful sales training requires commitment from leaders, too. It’s not just a matter of sending the team to school but in providing them with the coaching, encouragement and leadership needed to ensure sustainable sales success. By leading through example, designing a respectful training process, delivering honest, fun, immediately applicable content and creating desire to want to change comfortable behaviors, sales training results are optimized, resulting in an energized team, talent retention and converted leads. So how do buyers buy today? In many ways, buyers still buy on relationships. When all things are equal, the sales person the buyer likes best will get the business. But trying to build — or buy (think trade show tchotchkes, fancy dinners, over-the- top fam trips) — relationships, so that sales follow, is old school thinking. Today, relationships grow organically because sales people collaborate with buyers to ensure best results for the buyer. First the sale, then the relationship! Connecting the dots for the buyer is key to advancing sales because it makes buying easier. This starts with authentically understanding buyer needs, and aligning the offer with their key stated and unstated drivers. Providing personalized, emotionally sticky insight-led solutions give buyers confidence that their best interests motivate the sell. The more effortless the experience is in working with a new partner, the more likely it is that a partnership will grow.
  • 13. BRAND-FOCUSED TRAINING ALTERS YOUR TEAM’S PERSPECTIVE AND LEADS TO GAME-CHANGING RESULTS 13 High Impact Presentations by Sue Hershkowitz-Coore CUSTOMIZED SALES TRAINING FOR THE LUXURY HOTEL MARKET High Impact Presentations www.speakersue.com Sue@SpeakerSue.com | Phone +1 480-575-9711 Founder of High Impact Presentations, Sue Hershkowitz-Coore and associates help sales teams generate additional revenue through the use of authentic, relevant, emotionally appealing sales messaging.

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