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Your sales training doesn't work? Here's why:

Countless sales managers invest in training programs only to find that they have minimal impact on their team's performance and revenue. So what is missing? The key is understanding how people really learn.

How people really learn

“B2B sales representatives forget 70% of their training within a week and 87% within a month.”

Shocking, isn't it?

Most training programs focus only on knowledge transfer and neglect the crucial psychological factors that drive effective learning. They design a great curriculum, create the best courses, and prepare multi-day workshops to teach it.

Unfortunately, all this effort is usually lost, as most of it is forgotten within a month.

The reason for this lies in psychology. Get to know the 70 20 10 model — the breakthrough approach to workplace learning.

The model was created in the 1980s by three researchers and authors in collaboration with the Center for Creative Leadership, a nonprofit educational institution in Greensboro, N.C. Since then, it has been widely used by organizations to create effective, successful training programs.

According to this model, individuals acquire:

  • 10% their knowledge through formal education,
  • 20% through interactions with others, and
  • amazing 70% through experiences in the workplace.

The model's percentages aren't set in stone and vary from company to company, and the model has received several updates since 1980. But the fundamental psychological principle remains as a cornerstone for effective learning in the workplace: #Für effective learning in the workplace requires a mix of formal, social and on-the-job methods. The most effective learning takes place through experiences in the workplace.

Effective learning in the workplace requires a mix of formal, social and on-the-job methods. The most effective learning takes place through experiences in the workplace.

Now look at the typical sales training programs that are available today. Most involve one-off, general courses, workshops and seminars that are heavily focused on theory. They are not specifically tailored to every company and offer little opportunity for continuous practice and feedback in the workplace.

In other words, they heavily emphasize the first 10% but leave the remaining 90% unused. No wonder they are quickly forgotten and have no influence.

Design a training model that works

To design a training model that really works, we need to rethink our approach. Forget one-time seminars, stand-alone masterclasses and self-study courses. Although they impart valuable knowledge, they do not lead to real impact without follow-up measures.

Instead, consider a holistic approach that enables formal, social, and on-the-job learning. Here are a few practical examples:

  • Combine a one-off seminar with interactive reflection sessions and continuous coaching to reinforce learning and balance it with daily activities.
  • Sign up for an online course that encourages collaboration and discussion with colleagues, with regular sessions to identify areas for improvement.
  • Take part in a masterclass, participate in live group activities, and access small bits of knowledge that can be applied in real time.

The common denominator of these successful approaches is their ability to facilitate learning at every stage of the process. By integrating structured learning, social interactions, and workplace applications, you create a powerful learning environment.

Our experience with this model

The 70:20:10 model gives us a basic framework for understanding how people learn, but not a clear concept of how to implement it. This is where it gets tricky.

When we built the Hyrise program, we focused on achieving real behavioral changes that enable sellers to truly improve their performance and sales. We carefully tested various methods for enabling on-the-job learning at all levels until we found a formula that worked in the sales environment.

We decided to run our program continuously for at least six months and built it on four core pillars:

  • Regular, personalized coaching. Coaching is at the heart of our training program and actually has an impact on all three learning phases. Our coaches offer structured knowledge transfer sessions that build on our short courses, discussions where social learning takes place, and work sessions that focus on problems and experiences in the workplace.
  • Micro-learning courses. After a coaching session, learners will most likely be tasked with taking a short course and completing a practical task. Salespeople can only incorporate so much into their everyday lives and if companies want to take over and engage the training, it must fit into their everyday life with highly relevant yet highly targeted content. Here we strive for quality over quantity: It is about providing small micro-learning impulses, which are supplemented with a practical task in order to apply this knowledge and receive feedback.
  • Practical tasks. The most effective way to enable on-the-job learning. We hire salespeople to practice what they have learned through our courses and coaching sessions and apply it in reality. We draw from a library of proven tasks for every use case and create personalized tasks when needed. All tasks receive personalized feedback.
  • data. You can't improve what you can't measure. We regularly assess learners in various skills to measure progress and identify areas for improvement, and adjust the learning path accordingly.

This is a typical monthly training cycle at Hyrise Academy.

Make it suitable for you

Implementing a working sales training program requires time and patience. Our most important piece of advice when trying to get sales training up and running in your organization is not to spend money on expensive speakers and one-off workshops. They're not going to work.

Instead, focus on a training program that not only offers structured learning opportunities but also enables social and on-the-job learning. If you're a manager, regular coaching is enough to discuss key concepts that have been covered in structured learning and to identify blockages and problems that need to be worked on.

Many companies choose to take training into their own hands, and if you have the time and resources, it can be extremely effective. If you'd like to dive deeper into practical advice on how to implement an effective training program, check out our 8 best practices to implement effective sales training for your team.

Would you like to know more about our training program? Wir We are always happy to talk to you.

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