Monday, June 18, 2018

When You DON'T Offer Soft Skills Training to Your Team...

Presales staff are typically provided with an abundance of technical training (product, architecture, etc.), but soft skills training specifically for presales is often neglected.  While I knew, anecdotally, that this can result in employees seeking other opportunities, I didn’t realize just how important it can be.  A recent study by GP Strategies showed that

“53% of respondents have LEFT an organization because they didn’t have enough opportunities to develop their skills.”  (

Wow.  A quick web search for other studies yielded very similar results – the lack of soft skills training appeared in multiple “top reasons why people leave” reports (see below for a sampling).

If you are a presales manager and have been “on the fence” regarding providing soft skills training for your team, perhaps this will help move you to make that investment. 

An additional thought:  reward your best performers as an additional incentive.  After all, they are likely at the greatest risk of “moving on” (and are also likely your greatest assets).

If you are an individual contributor (and especially if you are one of the best on the team), you are welcome to add your voice to this…!

[Warning:  Shameless Self-Promotion Alert!]

Hey, I know – how about sending a few of your best performers to a Great Demo! Public Workshop?  We have sessions currently available as follows:

  • August 1-2 in Denver – click here for pricing and registration information.
  • September 5-6 in Amsterdam – click here.
  • October 10-11 in the Silicon Valley – click here.

You can find more information on these sessions at

A Few Additional Studies

4. Opportunities to Use Their Skills and Abilities

When employees use their significant skills and abilities on the job, they feel a sense pride, accomplishment, and self-confidence. They are participating in activities that they are good at and that stretch their skills and abilities even further.
Employees want to develop and grow their skills. If they’re not able to do this in your jobs, they’ll find one where they can. This includes opportunity. If an employee can’t see a path to continued growth in their current organization, they are likely to look elsewhere for a career development or promotion opportunity. Make sure that you’re talking with them and that you know their hopes and dreams. Help them create a clearly defined path to achieving them.  (


06. There aren’t enough career development opportunities

Employees want to develop professionally. They want opportunities to advance their careers — not just crank out work for the sole benefit of their employer’s wallet.
Our research has found that only 25% of workers feel as though there are ample opportunities for development at their organizations. If you never offer your staff career development opportunities, don’t be surprised when there’s an exodus.  (

9) Too few growth opportunities. One of the most common reasons employees express for leaving their jobs is lack of challenge and potential for career growth. The most successful employers find ways to help employees develop new skills and responsibilities in their current positions.

5. No Personal Growth
Ah yes, the much discussed need for 21st century workers to develop themselves in their jobs. Especially with the millennials entering the work floor, personal growth is more important than ever. This doesn’t have to be growth in terms of promotion per se, but more so in terms of opportunities to grow and develop skills. If you don’t provide your employees with the tools to do so, they might find an employer who does.

4.  Training for performance: Workers were given little opportunity to improve their personal and professional skills.  (

No comments: