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How I Build Outbound Training Programmes

+ The No.1 SDR in the UK

Chris Ritson

7 Jun 2024

3 mins

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In September of last year, I launched my most expensive course; Outbound Team Training.

The idea for this course was to work with SDRs & AEs over a prolonged period of time on their outbound sales development skills in order to help them build consistent, high quality pipeline opportunities. 

I’d found most Outbound training used the traditional ‘’day training method’’ where trainers come into businesses for a day or two, do training that isn’t focused on the companies specific use cases and the reps very rarely leave any better off.

Now, I’m not poo pooing day training here but it got me thinking. 

What do SDRs & AEs need to be successful?

Surely it’s more than a day or two worth of training. 

As a Sales leader in a previous life I knew in order to get the best out of people and keep them engaged they had to feel like they were continuously learning and developing. 

I had the sales knowledge. I’d done a tonne of enablement but I’m not a specialist in education and delivering material that helps people actually learn and retain information. 

So I employed my sisters [they’re both very good teachers] to help me understand the practical applications. 

It made me realise I needed to build an intentional designed educational programme for reps. 

Why am I sharing this? Because I believe every seller needs a sales education and every leader can provide it.

In this newsletter I’ll share with you how I built a training programme that ensures development rather than ticks the box of ‘’we’ve done some training’’.

Step 1 - Reverse Engineering

Most sales training is incredibly impulsive. It goes something like; ‘’calls were tough last week so lets all do ‘‘role plays’’ or ‘’the numbers were bad last month so we are doing extra training’’. 

For something to be successful it must be intentionally designed with the end goal in mind.

This is where I started. At the end. 

My end goal for team training is to give everyone who attends the programme a blueprint for for starting, growing and sustaining a pipeline of outbound sales opportunities.

Those are my constraints for any outbound team training programme. 

It’s also why the results have been so good. I’ve designed the house [like an architect would] before I have started building it. Its deliberate. Not impulsive. 

Step 2 - Group Content

Every business struggles with different aspects of pipeline generation. 

Every business also has a different use case to present to their prospective future customers. 

Most sales training uses some form of ‘’proven’’ framework that the trainer swears by [usually because they’ve used it themselves]. Whether it’s in house or external.

This is not how you build a training programme or create content. What worked for you will rarely work for others at different businesses selling to different personas with different use cases.

Whilst there are best practice frameworks to teach at a group level so all the reps are singing off the same hymn sheet your content needs to be tailored for your use cases. 

This is the first stage of making sure the reps [your customer] are being served properly. 

Tailor the frameworks and what you teach in any programme to the use cases in front of you. Not what social media says is the latest trendy thing to do. 

The final piece is ‘’overload’’. Day trainings teach reps 6+ topics in one day. It’s too much for the human brain to remember hence the knowledge decays and whats the point in that training?

The benefit of training is the knowledge reps learn that they can then turn into skills and results. It’s imperative its retained. 

It’s why my team programme only focuses on one subject area every week. 

For example…

  • Week 1 - Lists

  • Week 2 - Cold Calls 

  • Week 3 - Cold Email etc

In the words of my sister - when teaching it’s best to go deep into a subject not wide into many. Thank you, Jenny.

Stage 3 - 1:1 Content 

As I said, I employed my sisters to advise me on how to build a programme that aided the retention of knowledge and learning.

They told me group training isn’t enough. All programmes must be accompanied by focused 1:1 learning pathways that people are held accountable to. 

This led me to create and add two things to my programme: 

  • 1:1 Coaching. This is the opposite of scalable but the epitomy of quality focused. The aim of the programme was to serve reps by giving them a blueprint. If 1:1 coaching could help that process it should be included. 

  • 1:1 Playbooks. In a classroom environment no student is given a playbook by the teacher and told to follow it. The reason for this [my sisters told me] is it destroys individual creativity and the chance for students to take ownership for passing or failing. They are also 93% less likely to follow a guide if they didn’t write it or contribute to it themselves. 

This led me to create 1:1 exercise workbooks the reps needed to complete weekly with bespoke challenges allowing me to monitor progress weekly to see how reps are improving. 

The other benefit was by the end of the programme the reps had all completed ‘’playbook’’ they’d created themselves [non of me forcing a set criteria down their throats and having to police it constantly].

If learning must be accountable, what better way of doing that than making the reps accountable to their own playbook [not mine].

Your Action Step:

If you’re building a team training programme, don’t dive into the content, start by reverse engineering from your end goal for the programme.

Consider your reps as your students. Your role is to serve them with knowledge and skills that they convert into better conversations and pipeline. 

Hope this helps you build a great team training programme. 

If you need help with your outbound strategy [for folks in leadership only] you can book a free call here.

See you next week.

Cheers, Chris

PS. I met the no.1 SDR in the UK…

Feel free to connect with him on LinkedIn he’s a great add for anyones network.

PS. After 3 months of work my new product [Outbound Systems - THE PROSPECT-LED OUTBOUND METHOD] will be launching in June.

It’s a 100+ page Pdf with everything a seller needs to build and sustain a consistent flow of high quality Outbound pipeline.

If you’d like to join the waitlist, and learn about the course, click here

Whenever you’re ready, here are 4 more ways I can help you in 2024:

Go from SDR Manager to SDR Leader & Start Building a High Performance SDR Team [Quarterly cohorts].

Learn the exact system I used to help >150 SDRs get promoted to AE. [Quarterly cohorts].

Get the exact framework I used to coach >800 sellers how to double their conversion from call>meeting booked in 2024.

Book a 15 minute FREE call to help turn Outbound into a 7-Figure Revenue Channel [Heads of, Directors, VPs, CRO and SDR Leaders only].

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© 2024 Chris Ritson. All right reserved.

© 2024 Chris Ritson. All right reserved.