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Differentiating Styles in Sales

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Have you ever wondered why some members of your sales team pickup information about your product or your processes faster than others? Why some happily use the tools the company provides, and others do not even go near them?

It’s because we all have different ways that we create and consume information.

In fact, Professor Gardner at Harvard University proposed that there were eight distinct categories of intelligence. Certain people learn best through pictures, others logic and numbers, while others through words. The other categories include body intelligence, music, social, nature and self-intelligence.

For our purposes we can simplify the theory of differentiated learning to cover three categories:


These learners prefer a classroom style education. In a sales training session these learners will pick up considerably more information from listening to the instructor explain the new process.


As it says, these learners absorb more information through illustration of the sales process or perhaps a graphical representation of how to close a deal successfully. They will gain more from watching a video than participating in role-play.

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This learning style benefits from learning  that takes place by the students carrying out physical activities, rather than listening to a lecture or watching demonstrations. They tend to want to practice, so role-play is key in their learning. In this way they can adapt their style and approach to objections/ roadblocks.

While it does not make sense to design three different training sessions for your team, it is useful to adapt and incorporate each of these three elements into your sessions to make sure each employee will benefit.

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