I just finished reading a book called “Predictable Revenue,” which is about setting up an effective sales process in a 2.0 world. In the book, the authors devote a lot of discussion to the importance of training new sales reps, which is refreshing. Here’s the staggering part: it takes a really long time for sales people to learn a new job.
How long? One to three months for inside sales reps and six to 18 months for field or enterprise-account executives. Assuming these estimates are close, why do we work so hard to design on-boarding programs to be a short as possible, especially when employee turnover is on the rise. Shouldn’t new employee on-boarding — for sales reps or anyone else — be more aligned with how long it actually takes people to get up to speed? Shouldn’t we put new people through a 12-month on-boarding program instead of a two-week training class?