Competencies – The Building Blocks of Sales Success

If the talent of your sales organisation follows the usual distribution curve you will have a few star performers, a few poor performers and the majority there or there about occupying the middle ground.   What if you could shift the curve towards the top performers? Think what a difference it would make if a sizable majority; perhaps even half of your sales people were achieving their stretch targets?


A tool that can have a significant impact on achieving that pleasant position is sales competencies. Any job can be ‘unpacked’ into its constituent parts, what you might term the success drivers. These are competencies. A competency is an amalgam of skills, experience, knowledge and mind-set. Identifying what those are creates a real sense of direction for personal development, training, coaching, performance management and succession planning.

How do you establish what are the required competencies for your sales organisation?

  1. Firstly collect all the existing data that will help inform competence development: Job descriptions, role profiles, Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), success/failure criteria etc.
  2. Complete a role review covering all standards of performance
  3. Model exemplar performance, activities and behaviours
  4. Codify findings into a competency framework
  5. Include descriptors and behavioural indicators
  6. Test for relevancy
  7. Use to inform recruitment, promotion, performance management, role development and coaching

Structured Training have developed a set of 8 sales competencies that identify the elements of world class business-to-business sales performance.  They are being used by some of the biggest organisations to underpin real sales excellence.


If you would like to talk about how Structured Training can help with your competency development please contact us:


Brexit For Managers

The UK has voted to leave the EU, there’s not much you can do to change that today.  Managers are often surprised by the amount of trust and respect that their employees have for them.  Many will find themselves being pulled aside by employees over the coming days to be asked what “Brexit” will mean for the organisation, and for them as individuals.


It doesn’t matter how you voted, if you voted, or if you had the right to vote in this election, that’s not what your employee needs to know.  Employees want to know if they’ll still have the right to live and work where they are, if their job is safe and whether any major movement of employees is scheduled.

You may have a clear set of guidelines from your organisation, that help you to frame the conversation.   As a manager you likely won’t know the answers to all their questions, and that’s OK, it’s even OK to say it, but it’s important to do so in a way that’s reassuring and honest, rather than nervous and filled with speculation.  Not knowing the answer isn’t a failure, but not acknowledging the concern will only make it grow.

The most honest answer for most questions for most people today is “we don’t know, and it will take some time for everything to work out, there will be opportunities and threats for our organisation, and we’ll work to ensure the best outcomes.  In the meantime, carry on doing a great job.”

Brave conversations are an important part of the manager’s role.

Making the Most of a Potential Advertising Disaster

The nice people at Licor Beirao spent good money on an advertising board at Wembley stadium, making the most of their home country Portugal playing England in a warm up for the Euro2016 tournament.


They got rather more exposure than they bargained for when Portugal’s Bruno Alves lost his head, almost taking England striker Harry Kane’s with him.

Their media team came up with this fun response to make the most of their moment in the spotlight …