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Sales Training Consultants

Performance Through People


Competency Based Training

A competency model is a description of skills, knowledge and behaviors needed to perform a job or set of jobs effectively. Given the rate at which business needs change, competency models are important because job descriptions and performance expectations can become quickly outdated. With competency models, job expectations can stay aligned with current job demands or adapted to meet anticipated future demands.

Also, the processes we use to select, assess, and develop our sales employees can remain current and adaptable with our changing business needs. We have chosen to focus on these specific sets of competencies:

  • Functional Competencies -define what a person knows. Typically these competencies define one function from another. These competencies are often learned in school or taught on the job. They reflect the primary knowledge we are looking for when we hire and develop sales people.
  • Leadership Attributes - define how a person behaves. Typically, these attributes define how a person applies their leadership skills. They reflect the personal leadership skills we are looking for when we hire and develop sales people. The expectation is that all levels will apply these attributes based on a person's job expectations and responsibility level.
  • Supervisory Competencies - define how a person behaves in a supervisory role. They describe the fundamental behaviours that are necessary to supervise and lead people.

Competencies are gained through a multitude of ways-life experience; formal education; apprenticeship; on-the-job experience; self-help programs; and, yes, training and development programs. All of these together contribute to job competence in a sales person. Ultimately, sales managers and sales people working together and assessing consistency of job performance (behaviors) over time determine overall "sales competence." See Sales Force Assessment.

When choosing training and development activities to help achieve competencies identified for your sales team, target competencies - not courses. Too many people say "send them on sales training" as opposed to really understanding the actual competencies that need to be addressed. Some sales competencies that might be considered include:

  • Functional Competencies
    • Business Acumen
    • Channel Partner Effectiveness
    • Computer Skills
    • Customer Focus
    • End User Effectiveness
    • Negotiation Skills
    • Product Knowledge
    • Selling Skills
    • Strategic Sales Planning
  • Leadership Attributes
    • Charts the Course
    • Raises the Bar
    • Energizes Others
    • Resourcefully Innovates
    • Lives company Values
    • Delivers Results
  • Supervisory Competencies
    • Business Plan Implementation
    • Coaching Skills
    • Developing People
    • Leading and Influencing

Most sales training focuses on the functional competencies, since the leadership attributes and supervisory competencies are more appropriate at management levels.

Can we assist with your training requirements? Just email us now with your details and we'll get back to you.


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