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Management Research Project

Research background One of the most critical Issues facing today’s employer Is cost-effective sales training. Many firms are substantially increasing investment in sales training: however, little research has studied the usage and effectiveness of various sales training methods. There are numerous methods and materials available to help prepare and equip employees to better do their Jobs. Indeed, with so many choices out there, it can be daunting to determine which methods to use.

And using several methods for each training session may actually be the most effective way to help employees learn and attain Information. This report Introduces and compares different sales training method that which is effective to increase sales performance. 1. 2 Research problem This topic has been selected for two reasons. Firstly, the author is very interested in the area of the method of training which is effective to develop skills of salesman. Secondly, effective selling Is still a skill that must be developed.

Sales training can help aspiring salespeople develop and practice the skills they need to succeed and increase their confidence level. From a customer perspective, there is a need for killed and knowledgeable staff, whether it is going to a garage and seeking advice on a

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car, going too shop and needing some product knowledge, or asking for financial advice. Training is an important part of any Job and sales training is Just as Important. 1. 3 Research question Which training method is effective to develop skills of salesperson? . 4 Research objective To examine and analyses the deferent methods of training employees; Determine advantages and disadvantages of different training methods; To suggest an effective training method to develop skills of salesperson. 1. 5 Structure of research report The structure of this research report will be: Chapter Introduction, Chapter literature review, Chapter research Methodology, Chapter analysis and findings and Chapter conclusion. Chapter 2 literature review 2. Introduction This literature review will introduce and analyses the importance of select an effective sales training method and methods of Sales Training and its advantages and disadvantages. It will take automobile industry as an example. The success of a company can sometimes depend on the success of its sales team. Despite the best product or service in the world, if sales representatives do not have effective sales techniques, customers will not be properly provided for. Exploring different sales training methods will help employer pick the best one for company’s needs (Goldstein l, 1998).

Developing an efficient training program will create a higher level of productivity in your employees, and that increases bottom line. Select an effective sales training method can help develop employee management skills, improve employee decision making abilities and improve morale by increasing employee competence. By using the most successful methods of employee training, a company can realize a axiom return on investment for its educational efforts (Randall R, 1989). 2. 3 Methods of Sales Training and its advantages and disadvantages 2. 3. Traditional training methods There are many ways that you can break up training sessions and keep trainees attentive and involved, including: Quizzes. For long, complicated training, stop periodically to administer brief quizzes on information presented to that point. You can also begin sessions with a prequel and let participants know there will also be a follow-up quiz. Trainees will stay engaged in order to improve their prequel scores on the final quiz. Further motivate participants by offering awards to the highest scorers or the most improved scores. Small group discussions.

Break the participants down into small groups and give them case studies or work situations to discuss or solve. This is a good way for knowledgeable veteran employees to pass on their experience to newer employees. Case studies. Adults tend to bring a problem-oriented way of thinking to workplace training. Case studies are an excellent way to capitalize on this type of adult learning. By analyzing real Job-related situations, employees can learn how to handle similar situations. They can also see how various elements of a Job work together to create problems as well as solutions.

Active summaries. Create small groups and have them choose a leader. Ask them to summarize the lecture’s major points and have each team leader present the summaries to the class. Read aloud a preprinted summary and compare this with participants’ impressions. Q & A sessions. Informal question-and-answer sessions are most effective with small groups and for updating skills rather than teaching new skills. For example, some changes in departmental procedure might easily be handled by a short explanation by the supervisor, followed by a question-and-answer period and a discussion period.

Question cards. During the lecture, ask participants to write questions on the subject matter. Collect them and conduct a quiz/review session. Role-playing. By assuming roles and acting out situations that might occur in the workplace, employees learn how to handle various situations before they face them on the Job. Role-playing is an excellent training technique for many interpersonal skills, such as customer service, interviewing, and supervising. Participant control. Create a subject menu of what will be covered. Ask participants to review it and pick items they want to know more about.

Call on a participant to identify his or Demonstrations. Whenever possible, bring tools or equipment that are part of the training topic and demonstrate the steps being taught or the processes being adopted. Other activities. 1) Create a personal action plan 2) Raise arguments to issues in the lecture 3) Paraphrase important or complex points in the lecture Advantages: 1) Interactive sessions keep trainees engaged in the training, which makes them more receptive to the new information. 2) They make training more fun and enjoyable. They provide ways for veteran employees to pass on knowledge and experience to newer employees. 4) They can provide in-session feedback to trainers on how well trainees are learning. Disadvantages: 1) Interactive sessions can take longer because activities, such as taking quizzes or breaking into small groups, are time-consuming. 2) Some methods, such as participant control, can be less structured, and trainers will need to make sure that all necessary information is covered. 2. 3. 2 high-tech training methods Computer-assisted instruction – trainee and microcomputer interact on a one-to-one sass.

Programs can be organized in several different formats, such as drill and practice, tutorial, business simulation games or modeling. Computer-managed instruction – a computerized system used to test the trainee’s understanding of course materials. Based on this assessment of unmeasured objectives, an outline of further training is prescribed. Telegraphing – electronic meetings that enable participants at one site to interact with participants or instructors at a different location. Interactive video – presentation of video segments followed by computer generated multiple choice questioning.

Responses allow for “Branching” of video presentation and computer questioning in variety of situations (Robert C,1992). Higher tech training methods are still seldom used. Computer-based and computer- led sales training methods were expected, however, to become increasingly important, although telegraphing as a training method was expected to remain relatively low down on the list of preferred training methods. The businesses asked believed that the traditional method of role playing was the most effective training method for developing sales people.

One of the most striking results of the study was the discrepancy between the urgency of use of a method and its predicted effectiveness. The training methods of lecture/conference, televised lecture and film and video, the frequency of use was considerably higher than the effectiveness. On the other hand, those asked thought that interactive video, computer-based, computer-led and The case study training method, according to those asked, more appropriate for developing interpersonal communication skills in sales people than it is for transmitting basic sales information knowledge.

Additional differences were shown for the training goal of “changing attitudes”. In his case, computer-based and computer-led training methods were Judged to be the worse training methods to achieve the goal (Gordon,J. ,1998). Computer-Based Training (CAB) Computer-based training is becoming increasingly prevalent as technology becomes more widespread and easy to use. Though traditional forms of training are not likely to be replaced completely by technological solutions, they will most likely be enhanced by them. Human interaction will always remain a key component of workplace training.

Nonetheless, it is a good idea to look more closely at what training technologies have o offer and how they might be used to supplement existing training programs or used when developing new ones. Computer-based training formats vary from the simplest text-only programs to highly sophisticated multimedia programs to virtual reality (K. Randall Russ, 1992). Advantages: 1) Computer-based training programs are easy to use. 2) They can often be customized or custom designed. 3) They are good for helping employees develop and practice new skills. 4) They are useful for refresher training.

They are applicable to self-directed learning. 5) They can be cost-effective because the same equipment and program can be used by argue numbers of employees. 6) They are flexible because trainees can learn at their own pace and at a time that’s convenient for them. Computer-based programs are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. No matter which shift an employee works, training is always available. 7) Some programs are interactive, requiring trainees to answer questions, make choices, and experience the consequences of those choices. This interaction generally results in greater comprehension and retention. ) They are uniform, which makes it possible to standardize training. 9) They are measurable. When computers are used for training, it is possible to track hat each employee has learned right on the computer. Most programs have post- tests to determine whether the employee has understood the training. Test scores give trainers statistics for training evaluations. Disadvantages: 1) These programs require trainees to be computer literate. 2) They require trainees to have computer access. 3) There is little or no interaction with a trainer; if trainees have questions, there’s no one to ask. ) These programs are not effective at teaching “soft-skills,” such as customer service, sales, or sensitivity training. 5) They are not the best choice for new or one-time training. Trainers need live interaction to ensure new skills or concepts are being communicated. Trainees need to be able to ask questions and trainees having a poor retention rate of the material as well as a low finish rate Joseph F. 2. 4 Training methods of salesperson in automobile industry The Road to the Sale shows direct sales professionals that there’s more to car sales than trial closing and tech specs.

To be successful in direct sales-?especially in automotive sales-?you need to use sales training tools and consultative sales techniques like those in the Road to the Sale. Consultative sales techniques like these elf keep sales professionals focused on their goal: finding the right product for their clients (Clinton, S. W. ,1986). Historically, there are several methods of automotive sales training, for example mentoring, role playing and hiring a sales coach or trainer.

New teleconference and video conference technology has emerged that can reduce automotive sales training costs and making training available to more automotive sales professionals. New Training Options Since the introduction of the Internet, conferencing via Internet has become even more prevalent. Many automotive sales training companies offer Internet-based raining modules, recorded video sales training presentations and the newest form of Internet-based sales training, interactive video conferencing.

Teleconference Training Teleconference automotive sales training still exists, but video is incorporated in the training process as well. Presenters can give live training seminars and provide real- time question and answer sessions. With video, traditional training techniques such as role play can be incorporated into an Internet sales training program, allowing automotive sales professionals in remote locations to take part in truly interactive training. Choosing Training Providers An Internet search can provide leads on many sales training companies offering automotive sales training.

Companies still offer traditional in-person seminars, but there is a new focus on teleconferencing, video conferencing and providing Internet- based training materials. In January 2010, the National Automotive Dealers Association (NADIA), suspended their traditional NADIA Salesperson Certification program, and moved to offering only Internet-based training materials (Tim, B. , 2005). 2. 5 conclusions In summary, although high tech training methods tended to be perceived as effective, they were not as yet in widespread use.

Training methods that were particularly effective were those that included intensive involvement and participation on the salesperson’s part, such as role play, and similar trainer-led training methods. On the other hand, passive training methods such as lectures, sales conferences, films and Traditional training helps in developing personal skills to improve the effectiveness and impact of the training, it displays how trainers should adapt and deliver training sessions, courses, workshops and programs. Traditional training is not Just for better presentation skills or for focusing on training tips and tricks of the trade.

Moreover, it will help trainers to upgrade their present thinking, methods and habits. It offers advice having an infectious enthusiasm which will motivate any staff developer to test new methods for training. According to the businesses asked, discussion based training is right up at the top of their preferred training methods, both today and in the future. Lectures/conferences alone would continue to decrease in importance because they are the only training method in which the salespeople remain totally passive. Reference: Anderson, R. (1997) An Empirical Investigation of Sales Management Training

Programs for Sales Managers, The Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, 17(3), up. 53-66. Arthur W. (2003) Effectiveness of Training in Organizations: A Meta-Analysis of Design and Evaluation Features, Journal of Applied Psychology, 88(2), up. 234-245. TIA, A. (2005) A Three-Stage Model for Assessing and Improving Sales Force Training and Development, Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, 25(3), up. 253-268. Referrer, R. (1997) The future of sales training: making choices among six distance education methods, Journal of Business ; Industrial Marketing, 12(3/4), up. 5-195. Farina, J. (1994) Simulation Gaming for Sales Management Training, Journal of Management Development, 13(1), up. 47-59. Gist, M. (1989) The influence of training method on self-efficacy and idea generation among managers, Personnel Psychology, 42(4), up. 787-805. Hair, J. (1992) Traditional and High-Tech Sales Training Methods, Industrial Marketing Management, 21, up. 125-131. Honeycomb, E. (2002) Sales training in Malaysia High- vs.. Low-tech methods, Industrial Marketing Management, 31, up. 581-587. Honeycomb, E. 1993) Shortcomings of sales training programs, Industrial Marketing Lankan, A. 2004) Managerial perceptions of sales training and performance, Industrial Marketing Management, 33, up. 667-673. Leigh, T. (1987) Cognitive Selling Scripts and Sales Training, The Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, 7(2), up. 39-48. Lepton, R. (1999) Sales Training Evaluation Model, Industrial Marketing Management, 28, up. 73-86. Randall, R. (1989) Usage and Perceived Effectiveness of High-Tech Approaches to Sales Training, The Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, 9(1), up. 6-54. Roam, S. (2002) The effects of sales training on sales force activity, European Journal of Marketing, 36 (1 1/12), up. 1344-1366. Shepherd, D. (1995) The Training of Sales Managers: An Exploratory Study of Sales Management Training Practices, The Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, 15(1), up. 69-74. Chapters Research Methodology 3. 1 Introduction Chapter 3 outlines the research design which includes sampling plan of the research; data collection using interview methodology; data analysis and methods for analysis.

Chapter 4 is a conclusion and recommendation. 3. 2 Research Design It is the blueprint for conducting the study that maximizes control over factors that could interfere with the validity of the findings. Designing a study helps the research o plan and implement the study in a way that will help the researcher to obtain intended results, thus increasing the chances of obtaining information that could be associated with the real situation (Burns ; Grove 2001:223). The author uses the qualitative method in the research.

The following are some definitions by prominent scholars in the field: Patton (2002) defined qualitative research as attempting to understand the unique interactions in a particular situation. The purpose of understanding is not necessarily to predict what might occur, but rather to understand in depth the characteristics of the situation and the meaning brought by participants and what is happening to them at the moment. The aim of qualitative research is to truthfully present findings to others who are interested in what you are doing.

Qualitative research is a process of naturalistic inquiry that seeks in-depth understanding of social phenomena within their natural setting. It focuses on the “why” rather than the “what” of social phenomena and relies on the direct experiences of human beings as meaning-making agents in their 3. 2. 1 Sampling plan A sampling plan is a detailed outline of which measurements will be taken at what mimes, on which material, in what manner, and by whom.

Sampling plans should be designed in such a way that the resulting data will contain a representative sample of the parameters of interest and allow for all questions, as stated in the goals, to be answered. The author would intend to interview salesperson from Hong Kong automobile industry. During the process, the author will use structure interview and open ended questions to collect the qualitative data followed by choosing the experienced respondents in order to collect more accurate information. 3. 3 Data collection 3. 3. 1 Interview

The reason why the author used interview over other means of data collection is influenced by various argument presented by different authors. In a structured interview, the researcher asks a standard set of questions and nothing more (Leeds and Ramrod, 2001). Face -to -face interviews have a distinct advantage of enabling the researcher to establish rapport with potential participants and therefore gain their cooperation. These interviews yield highest response rates in survey research. They also allow the researcher to clarify ambiguous answers and when appropriate, seek follow-up information.

Disadvantages include impractical when argue samples are involved time consuming and expensive (Leeds and Ramrod, 2001). Telephone interviews are less time consuming and less expensive and the researcher has ready access to anyone on the planet who has telephone. Disadvantages are that the response rate is not as high as the face-to- face interview but occidentals higher than the mailed questionnaire. The sample may be biased to the extent that people without phones are part of the population about whom the researcher wants to draw inferences (Leeds and Ramrod, 2001).

Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing (CAP’): is a form of personal interviewing, but instead of completing a questionnaire, the interviewer brings along a laptop or hand-held computer to enter the information directly into the database. This method saves time involved in processing the data, as well as saving the interviewer from carrying around hundreds of questionnaires. However, this type of data collection method can be expensive to set up and requires that interviewers have computer and typing skills (Leeds and Ramrod, 2001).

Interviews make it possible to collect complete information from the different categories of sample. Assuming that sampling was done properly, this can ensure a fair degree of validity of information. It is possible for researcher to collect more complex information with greater depth and understanding, particularly when use in-depth interviews and focused group discussions. Interviews are more personal as compared to mailed questionnaires, and tend to result in better response rates. As such, smaller sample will do than that of a questionnaire survey (Marshall,2009).

Researcher has more control over the flow and sequence of questions. It is sometimes important to ask a particular question after some other questions have been answered. With questionnaire it is impossible to prevent light of that (Marshall, 2009). Researchers are in a position to introduce necessary changes in the interview schedule after the initial results. This is not possible in the case of a questionnaire survey (Marshall,2009). 3. 3. 1. 1 Interview Recording A. Tape Recordings and Note Taking 1) Tape record the entire interview, and then transcribe the text word for word.

The transcribed text then becomes the data that are analyzed. 2) Tape record the interview and take notes at the same time. Later review the tape and notes, occasionally writing down direct quotes that are deemed especially relevant. The tapes are kept as a record, but are not transcribed word for word. ) Only take extensive notes during the interview. B. Taking Notes Taking adequate notes is both a skill and an art. The ability to take good notes – ones that are understandable to others – is something that seems to come naturally to some people, while others find it more difficult.

The ability to write at a fast pace is essential, but it is also critical to be able to hear what is being said, and records the information in a manner that is both legible and faithful to the respondent. Before an interview begins, it should be established who on the team is mainly responsible for this task. 3. 4 Data Analysis The data are going to collect through interview that estimate maybe 25-30 respondents will be accept the interview. The interviewees are all car salesperson that coming from the automobile industry in Hong Kong. 10 open-ended questions about effective training methods will be asked.

Open-ended question does not provide a response option, but ask the respondent to answer in their own words. Such questions allow the respondent to be honest and provide as much information as they want to. They are not restrictive or limiting in nature. It provides respondents with an opportunity to actually reflect on their own feelings Cones, 2002). If they have an opinion, it gives them the freedom to voice it independently All the respondents will be required to answer same ten questions and estimated 20-30 minutes per person will be needed.

During the interview process all conversation will be recorded by using tape recordings and note taking methods and will make know to the interviewee that interviewer the purposes. 3. 4. 1 Method of analysis To analyze data, researcher will look at the theoretical framework. The theoretical underpinning provides the lens through which the data are viewed and helps the researcher to situate the results in the theory, which helps to facilitate the understanding of the data within that theoretical perspective (Allocate and sciences, 2009). Moreover, reviewing the research questions is critical important.

The research questions in qualitative studies are used to guide the design and study; hence, it is important to view data in terms of ensuring that sufficient data were collected to enable the research to answer the questions posed within the study (Silverman, 2000). The researcher will use conversation analysis method to analyze data because of this interview is a conversation between two people, conversation analysis can be useful in assessing the effectiveness of an interview. Conversation analysis (CA), like other forms of discourse analysis focuses extensively on issues of meaning and context in interaction.

However, CA is distinctive in developing this focus by linking both meaning and context to the idea of sequence. In fact, CA embodies a theory which argues that sequences of actions are a central aspect of the social context of an action, that the meaning of an action is heavily shaped by the sequence of previous actions from which it emerges, and that social context itself is a dynamically created thing that is expressed in and through the sequential organization of interaction (Gillian and Stutter, 2008). Conversation analysis (CA) is a method for investigating the structure and process of social interaction between humans.

It focuses primarily on talk, but integrates also the nonverbal aspects of interaction in its research design. As their data, CA studies use video or audio recordings made from naturally occurring interaction. As their results, CA studies yield descriptions of recurrent structures and practices of social interaction (Robinson, 2006). Some of these, such as turn taking or sequence structure, are involved in all interaction, whereas others are more specific and have o do with particular actions, such as asking questions or delivering and receiving news, assessments, or complaints.

Chapter 4 Conclusion 4. 1 conclusions As competition in automobile sales industry grows increasingly fierce, the role of salesperson cannot be ignored. So, an effective training method is very critical for salesperson. In spite of high tech training methods tended to be perceived as effective, they were not as yet in widespread use. Training methods that were particularly effective were those that included intensive involvement and participation on the salesperson’s part, such as role play, and similar trainer-led raining methods.

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