Do you ever feel like you’ve spent the time and effort to have a staff training and it didn’t make the slightest bit of difference? Your sales didn’t change, staff wasn’t engaged and no one got excited? Here are a few tips to make your next staff training a success.
Give your staff dedicated time to train while at work.
While this may be a difficult task for some stores, having time during the workday to train is going to create much more impactful trainings. Not only does it give your staff some dedicated time for education, it gets them off their feet and gives them a physical rest as well.
There are a lot of stores that encourage staff to train at home on platforms such as Expert Voice. While those platforms are great and certainly have their place, in reality, once most people get home, the last thing they want to do is work. If they do a training at home, it may be while cooking dinner, wrangling kids, or watching TV, so they are less likely to recall the training. So if you can provide even 30 minutes off the sales floor to do training, that will be best.
Don’t just train on a product. Train on how to sell it.
It is of little value to learn about a product but not to know what type of customer it would be ideal for and what makes this product stand out among the rest. All the product knowledge in the world means very little if you don’t know how to dialogue with customers and help them determine what products they need by listening to their concerns. It’s also important to know what products pair well with it so you can further educate and potentially upsell the customer.
Here’s an example. While this may be a no-brainer for many of you reading this, it never hurts to have a refresher or to double check and make sure your staff understand this.
Let’s say you just had a staff training on an anxiety product. A customer walks in and says, “I have anxiety. Do you have something for that?” The light bulb goes off in your employee’s head. “Of course we do! We actually just learned more about this product yesterday. Here is a great product for anxiety. See you later.” This is how many conversations go.
What could happen if your staff is well trained on the product and the sales technique could be something like this:
A customer walks in asking for something for anxiety relief. As you walk over to the anxiety relief section, go ahead and grab a basket for your customer if they don’t already have one because you know that you’re going to try to help them buy a few products even if they don’t know it yet.
“We have a great selection of products to help with anxiety. Do you mind if I ask what you’re currently taking?”
You find out that the only thing the customer takes is a cheap multivitamin and vitamin d. “You know, a lot of anxiety related issues can be due to nutrient deficiencies. Studies have shown that omega-3s levels have a direct impact on anxiety (plus dozens of other health benefits). Since you’re not currently taking an omega-3, that may be a great place to start to help optimize those levels in your body.” As you ask more probing questions you find out that they have a low level of anxiety but they get nervous when they have big meetings at work. You’re able to suggest not only an omega-3, you get them on the anxiety product you just learned about in your training because it happens to be a great option for them long term, but then you also tack on a fast acting anxiety relief formula for when they get nervous at work.
What could have been an “easy” sale of the anxiety product you just trained on can turn into a $100 sale of the anxiety product and several add ons that the customer really needed. In that customer interaction, you have set yourself up as an authority to your customer and have built loyalty and trust with them. Plus you’ve made 3x or more what you could have.
Give your staff free product
Many reps offer free products after training. Make sure your staff takes advantage of this and tries the products first hand. Nothing is more powerful than personal testimony. If your staff really believes in the products they sell, you will sell way more products than if they haven’t experienced the benefits first hand.
On a daily basis, it’s a great idea to also give your staff significant employee discounts so that they can easily afford the products in your store and become more and more passionate about the items they sell.
Feed Your Staff
They say that food is the way to the heart. There’s something to be said about making your employees feel valued and cared for and a catered lunch could be just the thing they needed. A simple meal can make your employees feel more motivated to learn because they know you’re invested in them. While this may not be an option for every training, an occasional lunch or dinner training can really speak volumes to your staff.
No matter what, train consistently and train well.
Training your staff is a key component to success. If you invest heavily in the education of your staff, whether it be in-store training, allowing them opportunities to attend trade shows, lectures, and so on, you won’t believe the benefits you’ll receive. You can teach about products but you can’t teach passion. Passion has to be fostered. By implementing these tips, you can start fostering a culture of passion for education and the products you sell.