Atlas® Canada goes deeper to reassert industry leadership
They say you can give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Or you can teach a man to fish and he will feed himself for a lifetime. It’s true—and Atlas® Canada sales professionals are starting to feast.
“Our business mix has changed over the last two years with a decline in government volume,” says Fred Haladay, Senior Vice President & Chief Commercial Officer. “In 2015, we took a hard look at where to grow our business and saw the best potential with private clients. We asked, ‘What if we want to capture 55 percent of that market—what do we need to do?' Simple arithmetic told us to convert more leads to sales. In other words, we needed to sharpen our sales skills.”
Developing the best sales force in Canada
With more than 150 Atlas Agencies across the provinces, sales training would require a significant effort. The search for the best partner led the Atlas team to talk with a number of highly rated firms. Fusion Learning Inc. was among them.
“Fusion was so confident in their services, they allowed us to interview their facilitators directly,” says Fred. “From that point, we were sold.”
“We started by assessing Atlas’ unique business environment,” says Fusion’s Leon Arendse, Vice President of Sales. “We talked to sales people and managers. We asked, ‘What will success look like for you?’”
Based on the findings, the Fusion team developed a curriculum to strengthen fundamental selling skills with real-world, experiential techniques. They conducted six intensive, one-day workshops in the fall of 2015 at locations across Canada. A total of 161 Atlas sales people took part.
A few weeks after the sessions, Fusion trainers conducted webinars, giving trainees follow-up assessments and coaching.
“The follow-up training allows us to answer questions the salesperson may have after taking what they have learned into the field,” says Leon.“We can offer additional pointers to hone their skills—we want every salesperson to see good results right away.”
Everybody learns something
Among those who attended training, four were from Highland Van and Storage (8808), including Arlene Johnston, Sales Manager & Relocation Specialist with 30 years of experience. She says her team agrees the training has helped; they have put the ideas to work and gotten results.
“We’ve had some excellent sales calls and sealed deals that normally might have gone somewhere else,” says Arlene. “One of the best things I took away was the gentle reminder I need to listen more. I am more relaxed not having to tell the customer everything there is to know about moving — and I can better hear their concerns.”
“Proof is in the pudding”
Atlas salespeople overwhelmingly indicate satisfaction with what they have received from training.
“Overall, attendees rated our facilitators 4.9/5.0 on their ability to engage,” says Leon. “Even professionals who have sold for 25 years or more tell us they have found this training helpful.”
“We’ve seen measurable success, starting with a huge bump in market share during the off season,” says Fred. “So we’re taking things to the next level. In October, we are providing a workshop for 125 sales managers. We’ve made good strides toward becoming the best sales force in Canada. But this is an ongoing process. Stay tuned.”