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After having read Mark Tewart’s post on “The death of the traditional salesperson” and seeing the commotion that it caused, I wanted to write a post on training. Mark had many opinions in his two posts, but the most important part that I took from both of them is that dealerships for the most part have virtually no training processes in place. I commented on his original post and suggested that he check his data again for the fact that I’m pretty sure he is inaccurate in saying that 95% of dealerships across the country have no idea how to effectively train a sales staff. I’m sure some do better than others, but 95% seemed like a pretty staggering statistic. I wanted to get some feedback from other dealers and trainers out there and see what training process, if any, is in place at your dealership.
I will start by sharing our training process that we do for our sales crew at our dealership. I would rank our training process at probably a 7 ish out of 10. I think we do an above average job, but I think we definitely have some areas we can improve on. When we hire a new salesperson the process is as follows: 1- We have 2 team leaders that take them through a 2 day orientation to familiarize them with the dealership and our sales process. 2- We have one of our sales managers put them through what we have named “blacktop university”, which is a 2 week intense training for 3 hours every morning. 3- We require that within their first 3-6 months of employment, all salespeople have to become master certified with Ford. 4- We try to do our best with ongoing training after the initial training. We do a 30 minute training on various topics every morning before we open and try not to be the “manager that just sits behind the desk” like Mark said in his post.
So that is what we do at our dealership but I’m dying to know what other dealers do so we can hopefully prove Mark wrong! Like I said, I think we do a good job out our dealership, but I’m sure we have room for improvement. Let me know what other things you guys have tried that seemed to work so we can hopefully improve ours a little bit. I’m hoping some of you guys were able to pick up a couple pointers from the way that we train and you can use them at your dealerships. Comments and questions wanted please!