Sales training and reducing the narrative

Good day, everyone. I wonder if you may have some ideas on this topic.

I've been given the task to complete a narrated course with three different branching scenarios by the end of September. The sales manager went to an LMS conference recently and wants everything to be branching scenarios like "The Broken Coworker." 

I got the first draft of the narrative, which takes 2.5 minutes to read before the first question. If this is to be a "choose the best answer" kind of story, I feel like maybe a minute max is the longest for an intro before that first question. Instead, what they've written is a full sales conversation that they consider a success. So maybe we don't do branching on this. Maybe we give the audience the highlights on what makes a successful sales call, do the scenario with no choices, then summarize at the end. But with that I see a huge problem with visuals.

As always, any thoughts are very much appreciated. You are all so helpful!

9 Replies
Bob S

Hi Cheryl,

Typically within that brief 2.5 minute sales conversation, there are lots of possible decision points that are good opportunities to invite the learner to participate.  Look especially for spots right after the customer provides some information and insert a "what would you ask next" type opportunity then insert choices (the best one being the next step in the SME successful narrative).  Make sense?

You can still leverage that end-to-end exchange the SME's provided.... you just don't have to do so all at once!

Christy Tucker

The complete successful sales conversation is a great starting point. Adding to Bob's excellent answer, ask the SMEs what mistakes people commonly make in the sales process. What do people do wrong? For each mistake they identify, ask how a customer might respond to that mistake or what the consequences would be. Those mistakes become the other answers in the "what would you ask next" question.

Cheryl Hoover

Those are very good points. In the past, the ones we've done have had the potential customer state an objection and our salesperson having to choose how they would respond. "What would you ask next" is a slight twist that could work well. In this 2.5 minute introduction, the salesperson is trying to create a relationship. I understand that. But talking about corvettes for a minute solid, I'm afraid our learners will get bored.

We're meeting this morning to discuss this some more. Thanks so much for your timely input.

Christy Tucker

One minute of intro isn't necessarily too long, especially if it's relevant to their jobs. If you're not selling corvettes, then you'll need to edit that part of the script to trim it down. Just because the SMEs gave it to you doesn't mean you have to use it word for word if it's actually a tangent. You can show making a connection with 2 sentences.

Do you have the option of doing some video for your intro, even if you just do static photos with multiple choice once you get into the branching? I've done that before for branching, and it works pretty well for setting up the initial context of a conversation.

Cheryl Hoover

We're hoping to do some video, but I'm not sure how well it's going to work because it'll be a staged trade show booth. But we're going to give it a try. We met this morning and talked through a lot of the branching. I feel a lot better after seeing multiple branching points. Fingers crossed that we can make it engaging enough!