Retail Sales Training for Spa Associates

Here's what I know to be true when it comes to developing a successful sales training program for your associates:

Know thy vision, mission and intent

Everyone in the organization must understand the vision, mission and intent of the company, why you exist and why you do what you do. And most importantly what part each person plays in the success of the organization.

Know thy product

This is so key if you expect your team to sell products. Not just the tangible products but also the intangible products such as the treatments offered and most importantly the 'experience'.

Train, train, and more training

This is an on going endeavor. Sales, product and communications training is so important to the success of your implementation process. The more you train and practice, the better the performance. This will include developing a full training program within the company and creating an alliance with your vendors to ensure that their product knowledge and sales training is consistent with your needs and message.

Open communications

Keeping open communications with your team is essential. The 'open door' policy really counts here. So often your team can fill you in on the real climate of the day-to-day business and what guest are buying and why. They have ideas that you should listen to and be flexible to incorporating. If you have someone on your team who really gets the sales concept you should put them in a lead position to work with the rest of your team. Regular meetings and check- ins are important to keep motivation and inspiration up.

Measure, evaluate, reward

What gets measured and evaluated gets done and incentive programs always stimulate growth and achievement.

The selling process is comprised of the following:

  1. Approaching the guest
  2. Gathering information
  3. Presenting appropriate products
  4. Making and closing the sale
  5. Building future sales Effective Selling includes:

  6. Knowledge of all products offered, both tangible and intangible.

  7. Listening closely to the needs of the guest.
  8. Probing for more information of the guest's needs.
  9. Handling objections openly and with confidence. WIIFM (What's In It For Me?) Guest buy benefits not features:

Benefit: a specific need that is satisfied when the guest buys the product.

Advantage: this links the feature to the benefit the product provides, specifically for the guest.

Feature: a product's qualities or characteristics that provide benefits to the guest.

The aforementioned are just some of the key aspects included when developing a sound sales training program for your organization.

By now you should be able to see that a sound sales training program is a solid investment that will reward your company handsomely. It may take some time to develop a program that fits your specific needs, climate and culture but is truly a component for success.

By Nina Curtis

Founder and President of the Nile Institute, Nina Curtis has worked in the personal care and spa industry for more than 25 years. She holds certifications in aromatherapy, reflexology, acupressure and color therapy and was instrumental in developing of training programs for salons and spas across the country. As principal of Curtis Communications, she consults for leading companies in the personal care industry. Ms. Curtis earned a MBA from Pepperdine University, and sees the value of learning business skills that are directly applied to the spa a nd hospitality industries. Ms. Curtis can be contacted at 310-275-6453 or [email protected].

Excerpted from an article that originally appeared in Hotel Executive