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Part II: Building a Great Sales Team: Sales Training Vendors, Approaches

In a previous article on developing a new agent sales training program, we provided an overview of the benefits of training and what makes a successful program. Here we take a high-level view on the various sales training vendors and many of the approaches available for the insurance industry. While on-site training and workshops are not presently available, we have included the various options each vendor provides

Sitkins Group

Online training is available for producers over a 12-week period from the Sitkins Group, an insurance agency-consulting group. Its Profit Sales training program is designed to develop producer skills in order to help them spend more time selling (and less time on non-sales activities), set 10 appointments per week, and build and generate a great pipeline of leads. The Sitkins’ CROFit (Chief Revenue Officer) program runs over a six-week period and equips sales leaders with skills and strategies to help coach producers, become their accountability partner/mentor, and guide them to reach and exceed their goals. The Elite 50 is an onsite program designed for producers committed to performing at the highest level. Dates for this program are tentatively scheduled for October 2020, February 2021, and June 2021.

Richardson Sales Performance

There are several types of programs available from Richardson Sales Performance including a consultative training program that uses video-based scenarios to transform good salespeople into great ones. Its consultative selling framework helps agents engage buyers in a customer-focused dialogue to develop relationships and increase sales results.

Richardson also offers training to salespeople on how to sell virtually (now more important than ever!). The training program covers how to manage the virtual environment, including insights on how to project professionalism and credibility, build rapport, set expectations for being on camera, and create materials designed to enhance and help engage while not distracting from real conversation. Training also covers honing one’s selling skills, which require a higher level in displaying virtual presence and engaging in meaningful discussions without losing the customer’s attention. The virtual sales training is a four-hour interactive workshop and can be customized.

Advanced training is also available to salespeople to increase close rates and deal size.

Janek Performance Group

Janek provides a library of sales training programs for insurance agents that can be customized to a specific company and its culture. The curriculum includes: Critical Selling Skills, Critical Prospecting, Critical Service & Sales Skills, Critical Sales Negotiations, Selling Virtually, Selling to the C-Suite, and more, along with sales management development programs. Janek offers onsite training, blended training (e-learning with traditional face-to-face teaching), virtual instructor-led training, and a “train the trainer” option.

Agency Performance Partners

Designed for independent agencies, Agency Performance Partners offers on-demand digital training courses to provide performance strategies to develop a successful sales team.   

Rain Group

From prospecting and opportunity management to consultative selling, negotiation, account development, and sales management, the Rain Group offers a suite of sales training programs delivered in person (difficult today) and virtually.  Insurance is among one of the verticals in which Rain specializes, helping both insurance companies and agents improve their sales results through training and consulting. The focus is on real behavioral change and results and includes assessment, program customization, and robust reinforcement to ensure that agents learn and apply new skills. Rain also offers a complete virtual selling curriculum across all stages of the sales process – from filling the pipeline and leading virtual sales conversations to growing accounts and managing sellers virtually.

Sandler Training

The Sandler Selling System is designed to help salespeople identify ideal clients, weed out who will not buy, and start more interesting sales conversations. Online sales training is available to help salespeople build trust through an exchange of information, opportunities, and relationships; negotiate win-win deals with mutual respect and equal business stature, and meet and exceed your sales quota and professional goals.

This is by no means a complete list but is meant to provide an overview of the training available today, particularly in the area of virtual selling training which for now is the new normal for agents and producers.