1. Understand your sales organization in depth
As Brendan explains, the fundamental step with building any great sales training strategy is to understand what sets you apart from the competition.
“At Google, we took a solid six months to talk with sales leaders and contributors from around the world. Instead of just taking a third-party product off the shelf, we built a rubric for what it takes to be a great salesperson in our organization.”
According to Brendan, this depth of understanding made a big difference when the time came to put Google’s preferred sales techniques into action.
“Once we had our distinct rubric clarified and brought in across the whole organization, it was a lot easier to implement a training strategy that lined up with it.”
2. Identify your unique way of selling
When it comes to selling, every company has its own unique way of operating. For Brendan, it was critical to take the time to understand Google’s culture.
“One thing that drove a lot of impact at Google was the time we took to identify what it really takes to be a great salesperson at the company,” says Brendan. “My advice is to do the same, whether you’re a large corporation or a small startup.”
“You need to gather your leaders, gather your individual salespeople, and think through the elements that set you apart. In our case, we came up with Google’s three pillars: know your customer, engage your customer, and own your business.”
As Brendan points out, understanding Google’s three-pillar strategy unlocked some truly valuable insights about sales techniques.
“Having this information unlocked conversations about where we were strong and where we had to improve. This works at the micro-level too - each salesperson comes in with their own set of experiences, and their own strengths and weaknesses. You need a way to define the right training, e-learning, and resources for them to improve.”