At Spring Venture Group, we believe that building a complete sales expert is more than just providing a script and walking away. We’ve developed an in-depth training program to get you started in your career, an exciting commission/incentive plan to keep you motivated, and a culture of coaching to support you along the way.
In this three-part series, we will dive into that magic recipe that helps us create the complete sales expert at SVG. First up: Training.
Spring training—the SVG way
We do sales differently at SVG. We focus on teaching, developing, and shaping sales agents from the ground up through our in-depth training program. We provide hands-on support and guidance, plus real-world experience, to help our new agents develop into successful closers before they ever hit the phones.
And we’re constantly perfecting the process. In 2018, we used real agent and manager feedback, company-wide insights, and data innovations to completely revamp our training development program. We’ve expanded the length and depth of our program and reduced our agent-to-manager ratio in order to better serve our new hires and our company goals.
In 2019, our new agent-training program expands over three months and is broken into five subjects:
Each subject was crafted with one objective in mind: To develop highly knowledgeable, well-prepared, and completely confident Medicare sales agents.
1. Understand Medicare/insurance
To be successful at SVG, employees must first understand the service we provide. Our company is heavily involved in the Medicare space, and we take the first part of our training program to really dive into the field.
Senior health care is complicated; we focus on developing experts that can help our clients clear the Medicare confusion through unbiased guidance and support.
2. Become a sales expert
In 2018, most of our training stopped right after step one. In 2019, we have focused more of our attention on teaching the qualities of being a good sales agent as well.
“Our previous training program was designed to make our agents experts in Medicare,” Matthew Applequist, learning and development manager, said. “Now, we also have a strong focus on becoming an expert in sales and developing trust in the company, in the process, and in the products we serve.”
During this period, our new hires:
- Review agent phone calls
- Shadow tenured agents
- Perform script workshops
- Develop a deep understanding of our sales cycle
The proof is in the numbers. As of writing this article, agents that completed this updated training system are selling more than double the amount of policies in their first four days than 2018 sales classes. This means agents are more prepared in those vital first weeks on the phone—which then inspires confidence and sets new employees on a path for long-term success.
3. Learn our systems
As Kansas City’s fastest-growing marketing and technology company, we are proud of our innovative approach and unique marketing capabilities. But because of this, understanding our systems and strategies can be a fairly complicated process.
We believe our agents should understand not only their role, but the structure of the entire company as well. We spend time teaching our trainees about all the systems we use and how the sales cycle works from start to finish. During this time, we give advice and teach best practices for quoting our customers, submitting business, and learning lead statuses and carrier information.
4. Embrace our culture
We are extremely proud of our company culture. We believe that understanding who we are as a company is just as important as understanding what we do — so we spend hours giving our new employees a deep understanding of how we started and where we plan on going.
We also believe that a good sales agent is one that believes in the product they are selling. SVG has an unassailable value proposition, according to Applequist: Our customers desperately need our service and we are the best — and now, most prepared — experts to provide it.
“The aging and sick are one of the most taken advantage of groups out there,” Applequist said. “We want our employees to align their beliefs with our value proposition and understand that they are in a position to truly help people who deserve it.”
This expands far beyond sales calls. Companywide, our culture is defined by our shared values and passion for finding deeper meanings to what we do each day.
5. Start production
At the end of training, jumping straight onto the phones can be intimidating. We spend the last portion of our training program actually calling clients, letting our new hires get their feet wet while still in the safe space of our training environment.
During this time, there are no quotas or pressure, just pure support and guidance. We do this for a few reasons:
- It reduces the pressure of performance
- It allows our agents to develop confidence
- It helps them build a pipeline for future sales
At the end of the day, sales is mostly an individualized career—but we’ve turned it into a team sport. Our sales trainers and managers take months out of their lives to help train you to be the best sales agent you can be.
In our next post, we will talk about what happens after the first three months of training, and how we continue to help you become the complete sales expert.