Combatting the Forgetting Curve: 3 Ways to Ensure Your SKO Doesn’t Go to Waste

By Mediafly | February 22, 2024

It’s SKO season: time for revenue teams and their leaders to get together and map out goals and strategies for the year ahead. There’s no doubt that SKO is an exciting period for everyone involved, but the sad reality is that the excitement doesn’t always carry forward into the rest of the year. Far too often, the time (and money!) spent at SKO ends up squandered as the sales team slowly returns to their tried and true methods of operation. 

Don’t let your SKO investment go to waste! Check out these strategies to combat the forgetting curve and help sales teams master new skills and information.

#1: Make All SKO Materials Readily Available

Sales leaders work hard on developing and rolling out new content, information, and data for SKO. Unfortunately, they don’t always remember to make those materials available to sellers. SKO is fun and exciting, but it also throws a lot of new information at the sales team all at once. It would be unfair to expect sellers to internalize every detail overnight. They need time to review and practice before they can start implementing any changes.

Make all your shiny new SKO materials readily available to your sellers using a sales content management system. In the system, sales reps can easily locate and reference the materials they need at any time without having to ask management for them. This creates a work environment that empowers sellers to independently act on what they learned at SKO and make improvements to their sales strategies.

#2: Commit to Coaching

At SKO, you laid out the specific skills you wanted your reps to improve throughout the coming year. Now, post-SKO is where the rubber meets the road, and the responsibility to improve cannot be placed solely on the shoulders of the sellers. It’s also up to sales managers to provide coaching on those skills and find ways to measure sellers’ progress.

Coaching is what will eventually make those skills a part of your team’s normal habits. Reps need guidance on the best ways to implement their new skills. Otherwise, they’ll be more likely to fall back into their old habits, effectively wasting the time and effort that went into developing the skills and strategies demonstrated at SKO.

To avoid this issue, design a training plan for your sellers and make it specific. Hold them responsible for the skills you want them to master. Try to think of creative ways to reinforce new information and encourage sellers to engage with it often. Maybe you choose to review one sales call per week with each of your team members and coach them on a specific skill. Or, you come up with monthly themes that fortify different lessons from the SKO. Find out what your team responds to and run with it!

#3: Find Time for Reinforcement

There’s a reason SKO only happens once a year – it eats up a lot of selling time. Most teams need to dedicate as much time as possible to actually collaborating with customers if they want to drive sales. But, that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to carve out time for learning throughout the rest of the year too. Don’t let your SKO be a one-time crash course in sales, rather let it be the gateway to continuous, hands-on learning.

For example, consider taking half a day with your sales team at the beginning of every quarter to reflect on learnings and reinforce the skills taught during SKO. Or, take advantage of video or live role plays and evaluations on real calls, whether self-conducted or performed by other team members, to keep your team engaged. 

Highlight and showcase reps who have shown progress, praising them for their mastery of new skills can also be an effective incentive. This encourages team members to share knowledge among themselves and cross pollinate on what’s working.

SKO is a big investment and delivers tremendous value when the practices learned are reinforced. Use these tips to help your sellers combat the forgetting curve and ensure your investment pays dividends all year long. 


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