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Five Ways to Train Your Employees Under Twenty Minutes

Just in Time for Holiday Season

Your employees are investments. You pay them for each minute they are on the clock, which makes up a majority of your overhead expenses. The difference between employees and other expenses in this category lies within the higher return on investment potential with employees. Great employees will be worth the expense (or more) if their sales numbers are consistently high. To find and keep employees like this, you must start by providing your team with the necessary tools to succeed and grow. One of the most valuable tools you can give them? Training.

“Companies that invest in employees’ training and development enjoy 24% higher profit margins versus companies who don’t”

– Huffington Post

Daily training keeps information fresh and staff focused. These training sessions do not need to be hours long, in fact, they should take no more than 15 minutes! Choosing a sales-focused topic and working on it daily allows you and your staff to retain more information and become the best salesmen.

➤ 1. Implement a Morning Meeting

This 5-minute meeting is your chance to help your team focus, build relationships, and begin the day with motivation. Train your staff to know that these meet- ings begin promptly every morning, prior to the doors opening and the distractions beginning. The second a customer walks through your doors or the phone rings, we often go into survival mode. While you still have everyone’s undivided attention before the rush of customers start, set the stage for a great day!

Morning Meeting Breakdown

Sales Goal: Reiterating goals out loud with the team helps make the number real. It is no longer a projec- tion that they may or may not look at. Now, the number is what drives all business for the day. Discuss as a TEAM how you will achieve today’s goal. 

LY: This stands for last year. It’s important to compare sales year after year. This is just a guide to see where you were last year compared to now. You will want to place last year’s numbers here to set the goal and intention of doing better than the previous year. 

WTD Sales: Team meeting dialogue is different depending on the day of the week, so bringing your conversations back to your weekly goal will be a great reminder of where the ultimate focus should be and how projects and tasks can align with that. 

Personal Goal: This is when you and your staff members get to set your own personal goals! This is your chance to set your own expectations based off of the day’s goal or a sales bonus goal (if you have this in your store). This personal goal can be as simple as a specific number, but it’s important for each of you to verbalize your strategy for hitting your goals.

What’s New? This not only gives you the opportunity to talk to your team about any changes happening with procedures, but is also the time to talk about ANYTHING that might affect them. If you have re-ordered an item, let them know! If you decide you want to hire another member, tell them because they might know some- one perfect for the position! Keep a running list of the information given out for a few weeks and talk about it all. Put dates next to the information so that you know when it was first talked about and how thoroughly it’s been talked about. It is better to repeat things than it is to not tell everyone it will affect. The goal is to keep information flowing and open communication with the team. Every- one should be on the same page and know what is happening. 

Announcements: This is separate from “What’s New?” because this will have different talking points. It’s the perfect time to excite your team about what events/parties might be coming up in the future! Give necessary dates and details about where the event will be held, the plan in place for reach- ing out to customers, and the tentative timeline in order to prepare for the event. This is also an area to introduce team contests or incentives. Maybe you want to implement a contest for the most candles sold by the end of the month. Use this section to explain the details and get your team excited. 

➤ 2. Continue to Train on Product

This exercise is focused around grow- ing a deeper knowledge of your products. This is an essential element to increasing your sales and building confidence within your staff. This is so much more than knowing a brand name, the fit of an item, or other generic information. This is about knowing specifics about your products so you can communicate how they will work for specific customers’ wants and needs. This will help you and your employees earn the trust of your customer base. The difference 15 minutes a day of product training can have is undeniable. Prior to starting this training, choose a product, category or brand to focus on. For the sake of keeping the meetings under 15 minutes, you might have to break down the broad topic even more! 

➤ 3. Practice Scenario Selling

Scenario selling is acting out a hypothetical situation to an imaginary customer. Yes, we are bringing role play back! These hypothetical scenarios can be based on both real life experiences and possible situations. When using this exercise, note the time of year, product in the store, or things you notice your team has been struggling with. If it is a high traffic time of year, practice how you would successfully work with more than one customer. If you have in influx of customers who are traveling due to an event in town, work through how to ensure that everyone who walks in adds a few things to their suitcase.If you have a mother or husband coming in for gifts, open up the discussion to how you can make sure it is a five-piece gift.

➤ 4. Highlight Their Success

While teaching people how to do something, it is easy to get in the habit of telling them what NOT to do. No one wants to work in an environment in which they are constantly being told what they could, should or shouldn’t have done. People are more likely to show up to work excited and personally motivated if the environment they are working in is positive! So, how can we change our words and even some of our training to be more positive? Daily, look for things that employees do extremely well. Whether it is a greeting, getting a customer to open up, or remembering a customer’s name. During your morning meetings, point it out! Commend the employee for doing such a great job! Then, ask them to explain how they do it.

➤ 5. Discuss Each Transaction

Many of the training exercises above are focused on setting intentions. This exercise involves you watching, listen- ing and critiquing employee-customer interactions. After every customer transaction, whether it resulted in a sale or not, talk to the employee about the inter- action! Let your team know that you are going to start doing this, so that they do not feel as though they are in trouble or being picked on 

Implementing any one of these 5 training tips will continue to build on each employee and their skills. Not every training needs to take hours of you and your employees’ time, but setting aside 10-15 minutes a day should be part of the foundation of running your business. It’s through this continual training, setting intentions, and building on conversations around personal development that your employees will build the foundation of knowledge they need to be more confident and sell more.

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