ADVICE

Sales reps can sharpen their tools of the trade with sales certifications

SOURCE: Philippe LOPEZ/AFP
Don’t let a lack of upskilling cull your professional growth.


By U2B Staff 

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Sales teams are the heartbeat of every organisation. Sales reps play a pivotal role in business development and growth, which makes it essential to invest time in upskilling efforts. No team is exempt from challenges, but sales certifications are useful in helping individuals and teams gain an edge and overcome challenges at work.  

A recent Deloitte report found that businesses are preparing for a slowdown in sales and cash flow challenges due to COVID-19. 

Back in 2014, Deloitte highlighted in its report, Re-invent sales for the 21st century, that “selling is getting harder and the adage of sales being more of an art than a science has never been further from the truth”.

Traditional methods of selling and approaches to sales management do not suffice in an increasingly complex, clued-up and cost conscious world, it said. 

Customers are getting savvier with more information at their fingertips and thus have higher expectations, in addition to becoming more price sensitive and using mobile platforms that require companies to have a well-defined mobile strategy in place, to name a few.

With these changes mean executives to C-suite leaders will need to upskill to ensure they have both the hard and soft skills to navigate this complex environment. 

So how do sales reps develop a blueprint that drives sales growth? Or what changes can teams or individuals implement that would make things more effective?

Without a doubt, sales reps face numerous challenges but with the right tools, things can easily be solved. On a granular level, upskilling is essential in helping sales reps improve their strengths and hone their weaknesses. 

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Sales certifications demonstrate commitment

Honing your skills is not an overnight endeavour, but to put you in the right track are sales certifications where you’ll learn from qualified individuals. 

eCornell, for instance, offers Sales Growth, a five-course certificate provides sales managers with the skills needed to build an actionable roadmap for driving sales growth. 

Candidates will learn how to conduct micro-market analysis to find hidden and unique opportunities, discover strategies to streamline their go-to-market process to increase face time with the highest-priority clients, and focus their value proposition for higher conversion rates.

Topics covered include discovering sales growth opportunities, winning key accounts and sales negotiation. The classes are based on the book Sales Growth: Five Proven Strategies from the World’s Sales Leaders, authored by experts at McKinsey & Company.

INSEAD offers a variety of sales and marketing programmes including in areas of BRB marketing strategies, strategic marketing, digital marketing strategy, negotiation, and more. 

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Microcredential providers also offer various professional development micro-courses that are fueled by industry needs. Coursera, for instance, offers courses on strategic sales management, negotiation and sales operation and management, to name a few, catering to individuals of all levels. 

Whether you choose to upskill via executive education, online learning or even workshops, upskilling in sales is essential to take your career up to the next level and help you navigate challenges that can come your way.