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One of the things I talk about often with sales leaders who are eager to maximize their team’s performance is the principle of reinforcement. All too often, we think of training for salespeople as a one-and-done initiative, as something we can check off a list once the "training" event is over and consider finished. Actually, the training we have invested in is next to worthless if it is not reinforced over time, incorporated as a personal priority, and made an ongoing topic for discussion within a personalized sales coaching plan. Reinforcement is thus one of the neglected secrets of effective sales leadership.
Most salespeople hate role play even though it is one of the best tools to help them grow. Unfortunately, traditional role plays set up a salesperson to feel bad about themselves instead of learn.
We strongly suggest that managers be the salesperson when role playing, especially when working with new reps, for two reasons. First, playing salesperson allows a manager to demonstrate the behavior they expect of their reps in front of a prospect. Second, a manager shows their team that they've still got the skills to sell in the field