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Earlier this month, the first Sales Winners cohort of the year completed their training. The cohort included none other than our own Marketing Assistant, Florence – but how did she find it?

Here’s her take on the course…

What I was expecting

When Chris suggested I take part in the upcoming Sales Winners Programme in order to gain an insight into a key element of our offering, I was honestly a little unsure. I’m not what you’d call an extrovert, and giving presentations is fairly high up my list of things to avoid wherever possible. I’m also not a personal salesperson – there’s a reason I sell from behind a computer screen!

However, like the Discovery ADR Group, I’m a big believer in the benefits of training which takes you out of your comfort zone, even if it’s not directly related to the day job, so I wanted to give it a go.

On the first day, Jonathan asked us to write down what we wanted to get out of the programme, and my response was as follows:

–        To become better at expressing what the company does

–        To understand better how to sell intangible products like ours

–        To grow confidence when presenting/talking to strangers

What actually happened

–        We learnt about the framework of SPIN selling and how to ask the right questions

–        Chris provided some really interesting insights about the psychology of selling and how much your attitudes and behaviours influence sales situations

–        We got to practise sales role plays

–        We played several sales-based team games which were hilarious, brought out everyone’s competitive side and may have led to some unsavoury language from certain delegates…

–        We did several presentations on ourselves and our companies to develop our confidence and help us work out exactly what our value proposition was (not as simple as we might have thought!)

The best part

The best part was probably meeting all the other graduates and sharing our experiences in our respective companies. It was a really diverse group of people from different industries and backgrounds, and hearing about their roles definitely added interest to the course. Everyone was really friendly, and we all got comfortable with each other after a day or two – I never felt like I would be laughed at if I asked the wrong question or messed up a role play, which definitely made me more willing to have a go.

The worst part

Hands down the sales role play! Being a perfectionist, the idea of anything where so many things could go wrong (especially since I had never made a sales call in my life) was pretty unpleasant. It went surprisingly well…until I completely lost the thread of my questions and went round and round in circles until Chris kindly put me out of my misery by agreeing to a meeting just to get me off the phone.

With hindsight it was a useful experience, but at the time I was cursing whoever designed the new office for not providing some sort of trap door/ejector seat escape route…

Top 5 things I learnt

–        How to express what we do in a succinct and appealing manner.

–        The value of ‘other person centredness’

–        Activity drives results but doesn’t guarantee them.

–        Presentations are not the worst thing in the world.

–        Failing in a practice situation can be a good thing (although I’m still not 100% sold on this one..!)

And I wasn’t the only one who enjoyed the course…

100% of the cohort said they would recommend Sales Winners to other graduates in sales roles, and 67% said it had had a very positive impact on their confidence when selling.

For more information on Sales Winners, see here!