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Just How Integrated is Your Sales Training with Other Company Training and Goals?

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Fri Dec 03 2010

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Over the next three Fridays we will be blogging about data found in last year's ASTD's State of Sales Training research study. This three part series will drill down deeper each week as we analyze and discuss trends found in this insightful research. Part 1 will focus on the importance of aligning sales training with other corporate training as well as corporate goals and initiatives, part 2 will focus on the "who, what, and how" of sales training, and part 3 will focus on the "what and how" of selling skills.

We're really hoping to get some good discussion going. So whether you're a grizzled veteran or someone new to sales training, head down to the comments section and let us know what you think!

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Integrating Sales Training with the Learning Function

As one participant in the study said, "Training cannot be in a vacuum it must be integrated to be relevant."

This rings true when looking at the data. An analysis correlating the integration of various components of sales training with improved sales performance found that all five components (found in the far left column of the figure below) had a significant positive correlation between integration with corporate learning and higher sales performance (see column at the far right of the figure below).

Just How Integrated is Your Sales Training with Other Company Training and Goals?-53507b8fa56cbcedb0fdd753032350474153ba9ac49259a210ba82fed4b6c965

What effect can this have?

Of the 5 components, the data shows that sales performance and revenue increase was most positively correlated with these 3: delivery of learning, the personnel/training staff, and how the learning is designed. This suggests that integration of sales training with overall corporate training means more sales.

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Conclusion

For most organizations though, sales training decisions tend to reside within the sales function and thus ends up isolated from the corporate learning function. The companies that do integrate their sales training organization into the broader corporate function are most likely to integrate content strategy and the delivery of training.

Unfortunately, learning design, staff training, and budgeting areas of sales training are typically not integrated at all, or only to a small extent. This makes the sales training function one of the last major training areas to remain somewhat separate from the organization's other learning and development professionals.

What are your experiences? How does your company or organization position sales training? What ideas do you that can improve the situation?

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