Why Training for Millennials Should Probably Come From (You Know) an Actual Millennial
If you’re a young professional just coming out of college you’re probably going to spend a great deal of time “in training.”
And if you’ve chosen a role as a sales executive, you’ll take part in more training than most.
You see, in the corporate sales world, “training” can be code for lots of different things. You might be trained on how to use particular products. How to “demo” for prospective customers. How to use your company’s CRM tools, and on and on it goes with little end in sight.
But what about the areas in which you’re ARE NOT being trained?
· How do you (as a “millennial”) handle conflict in a corporate setting?
· How will your age affect your relationship with prospects and customers?
· Even before you’re hired, how best should you communicate with your recruiters and interviewers?
This is when things get a little dicey.
In almost a decade in the field I’ve sat through a great deal of training. And most of it never spoke to me on any meaningful level, and I think there’s a very simple reason for that.
I remember one of my readings from graduate school, “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions” by Thomas Kuhn. While I’ll butcher some of the finer points, it (among other things) breaks down what a “paradigm shift” is, and what it is not.
It turns out that paradigm shifts aren’t always as advertised, because they’re created from the same language that was used to build the old understanding of a subject. In other words, progress and new understanding is the result of social collaboration among scientists as much as anything “new.”
So what in the world does this have to do with your sales training?
Well it is my personal belief that some parts of the training of Millennials can only be done by another Millennial. It just isn’t reasonable or logical to expect a 40-year-old, or a 50-year-old to be able to train twenty-something professionals about what it’s like to be in their shoes taking on their new careers.
In other words, there’s some parts of their “paradigm” that are just never going to match up to yours. It isn’t anyone’s fault, it is just a function of time and generational gaps.
This thought has been at the center of the formation of my own business. I believe that the companies hiring young professional graduates can greatly improve the ways in which the two parties communicate: from on-boarding and company culture, to sales-specifics and customer interactions.
My mission is to connect individually with young professionals who are seeking sales careers and help them step into their new roles with confidence and perspective.
The Medium platform offers a business like mine a great opportunity to engage with other professionals on a more conceptual and free-flowing level than a more traditional “click-bait” blog. So my hope here is to learn how Millennial training is handled in other industries and from other vantage points.
You always hear the saying, “if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.” My hope is to grow my business on the belief that there are many better solutions out there yet to be discovered.