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Selling training

September 19, 2010
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In every company, training must be delivered.

Many companies listen to employees and insist that training is for the new guys or when new procedures are to be implemented.

Actually, nothing could be further from the truth.

Professionals in most industries need to frequently repeat the fundamentals to enhance and solidify their knowledge base.

Training exercises can cause proper behaviors for professionals to “just react” when confronted with the many challenges they face in their buildings every day.

Resistant to change
There are some employees who never want to take the responsibility of learning new techniques, ideas or procedures because certain people do not like change.

These employees are happy with the way things are.

They are uncomfortable with challenging themselves to understand new concepts because that requires the belief that they do not “know it all” already.

It is almost as if these employees are competing with themselves to reach a level where they never have to learn anything new again.

To sell this type of employee on the fundamental training method, we must first help them understand that learning is a lifelong process.

It is amazing that the majority of people in our industry, many of whom do not have a formal education, believe that the learning process ended when their schooling ended.

Training for trends
When looking at new trends like “green cleaning,” we must not forget our employees may need to be sold on the new idea.

First, it is vital to ask and accept feedback from all stakeholders who will be affected by the new action, procedure or product line.

As mentioned above, some people are reluctant to accept change; this is especially true when they are not given a reason or have little input in the decision.

This is where our real sales skills are needed.

Selling in business requires the business owner to realize that we not only sell our external customers, but we learn to sell everyone in our own company about the ideas, vision and procedures that we require to create our company in the image we envisioned when we started.

We must strive to create an environment where constant learning and upgrading of skills is encouraged and even rewarded.

We must also be dedicated to improving our own skill sets to show the employees that we are practicing what we preach.

Constant change is the nature of the business world today and the cleaning industry is not shielded from this phenomenon.

Employees are the best people to bounce new ideas off of.

They are on the front lines of your company and know best how new ideas will work, how procedures get implemented and who will accept new ideas and, more importantly, who will not.

Ask employees for input on new functions or procedures to help ease the acceptance phase.

When they understand that they are a part of the change structure, they are more apt to accept and even cheerlead the new changes.

Then, workers will have a vested interest.

Keep helping your employees understand the “why” in the training function because it will make the “how” much easier to sell.

Dane Gregory is president and CEO of 3-D Corporation, which owns Dr. Clean Consultants, a company that provides technical and management training to companies worldwide. For more information, visit

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