Our driving aim is ‘Improving Business Performance’ for our clients. This means working in partnership with them, understanding their business, and helping them achieve their objectives through practical and focused training.
Flexibility is an important part of a successful partnership. Thus, we will work with our clients in the way they prefer. For some of our clients this means delivering a single course or workshop and that is all. At the other end of the spectrum is a complex contract where we prepare, deliver, review and carry out most of the administration.
Read about some of our partnership projects in the case studies below.
Japanese Owned Subsidiary
Sales and Profitability Growth
The company is a UK Limited subsidiary of a Japanese Corporation. Part of their business strategy is to increase the size of the musical instrument market.
Spearhead Training had developed a strategic training and consultancy partnership with this company over many years of working together. The company had recognised the need to drive sales and profitability and Spearhead was selected to handle an initial project.
The first strategic project focused on auditing and benchmarking the sales force. Field accompaniments were undertaken and a detailed observations and a recommendations report was presented and specific training needs identified.
It was agreed to design and deliver two modules focusing on Key Customer Management. Line Managers were involved at an early stage to secure their involvement and commitment to the training.
Delegates attended from the UK and Ireland. As part of the follow up Post Course Action Plans were completed by each delegate and additional field accompaniments were implemented.
Other strategic business and people issues have been identified and have been handled for example:
More recently an audit and mystery shopper exercise identified specific training needs when handling incoming calls. A series of one day tailored modules were subsequently designed and delivered to all employees across the various business units.
The Managing Director also recognised that individuals needed specific tactical training to meet their career aspirations as well as the needs of the business. He demonstrates his commitment by allowing selected employees to attend a variety of open courses.
Both of these courses provided firm foundations upon which other skills and techniques could be built that improved performance and competency levels.
Regular training review meetings were held with the Managing Director, his board of Directors and Senior Managers to review in-depth each consultancy project and strategic and tactical training solutions to check knowledge sharing, quality of design and delivery, communication, evaluation and follow up.
In the six years since embarking on the staff training and development plan, sales revenue has increased by 35%. In a sector where technology advances result in lower prices, this is significant volume growth as well.
This sales growth has not been at the expense of profitability which has significantly increased and been maintained at a level 300% higher than six years ago.
Leading Supplier of Industrial Chemical Products
Manager Development Programme
The company is a leading specialist in erosion, corrosion and chemical protection and initially started to use Spearhead Training’s open courses for their middle and senior managers.
They were so impressed with the training that they chose Spearhead to develop a number of in-company courses exclusively for them.
The following year an extensive training needs analysis was conducted for all managers and staff. The company has a real learning culture and the Managing Director’s vision is that all staff and managers personal development need are fully catered for.
Working with the HR manager and Managing Director we developed a modular management development programme for them, which spans junior first line managers through to senior directors.
The programme was offered to all managers and potential managers with the aim of ensuring they are fully equipped with the knowledge and skills necessary to manage people in an effective and product manner.
The Programme contains the following 5 modules which are delivered on an as needed basis:
In addition to these management modules, the client company has also asked us to deliver a range of business skills training for them, including financial awareness courses, business writing courses and managing distributors training.
Spearhead work in partnership to review the results on an ongoing basis to ensure that courses continue to meet the clients needs.
A Major Supplier to the Construction Industry
Development of a Sales Academy for The Sales Force
The client is a major supplier to the construction industry including commercial offices, education, healthcare, retail, industry & technology, government & military for projects of all types and sizes. They have been working in partnership with Spearhead for over ten years and developed a Sales Academy.
The Sales Director had the vision to create a professional sales training programme for the sales force. A key objective for the Sales Academy is to ensure a common approach to selling by the sales force. Another key objective is to ensure that the sales force were taking the right actions to deliver the required sales results of high profitable growth.
One of the areas they initially required assistance with was to develop a set of competencies to be used to determine the requirements for each sales job role. This is an area of expertise for Spearhead Training and vital to ensure that the training subsequently delivered produced results.
The next stage was to develop a set of modular training courses for sales staff to attend over a three year period. One of the key barriers to successful implementation of learning points from a training course is effective line management support. Spearhead Training worked in partnership with the client to provide a Coaching Programme for their Sales Managers to ensure that the sales team received the appropriate pre-course briefing, post -course coaching and on-the-job development.
The sales academy developed comprises six levels. Sales staff attend these programmes as their career develops, in conjunction with the appraisal process and managerial coaching.
The six levels are as follows:
The company has a policy to recruit experienced sales people who may have already received some sales training.
Spearhead Training devised a system for bench marking new recruits to ensure that they were provided with the most appropriate individual development plan to achieve the best return on staff investment.
With a sales force of around a hundred staff, new sales people are recruited every month - often with urgent training requirements. This is where Spearhead’s open sales training portfolio came to great use by providing a timely and cost effective way of delivering staff development to small numbers of people.
Another particular challenge for the client has been to retain customers against fierce competition. Therefore Spearhead worked in partnership to develop an account management training programme in order to ensure that key customers were managed effectively. This has been rolled out to all relevant staff.
The results have been very satisfying with numerous account plans developed and a greater focus toward existing customer satisfaction and therefore improved retention. Success stories are regularly shared at their sales conferences.
The company is now one of the fastest growing businesses in it’s sector whilst achieving healthy profit margins. Spearhead continues to work in partnership with them to support them in achieving profitable success in a competitive market.
Leading Tyre Manufacturer
A leading tyre manufacturer and Spearhead Training have been working together to create development programmes for the client's talent academy.
The client has a commitment to training, equal opportunities, career development and a high performance culture. They want to allow their people to realise their full potential and maximise their performance, whilst delivering the high standards their customers demand.
To provide a vehicle to make this happen, the talent academy was developed. This provides a specific development path for each job role and dovetails with the staff appraisal process.
Spearhead Training was chosen as the provider for all soft skills training within the academy.
Spearhead was selected because of our excellent reputation in the training industry, our effective training methods, and value for money.
Spearhead Training has delivered training primarily to Supervisors, Team Leaders and junior Managers, as part of the talent academy role out.
The results achieved to date have been highly effective: key staff have been given the tools to be more effective in their job role.
Spearhead continues to work together in partnership and providing a positive contribution to staff development and business success.
Leading Software Provider
Professional Development Programme
A leading supplier of UK HR software and payroll solutions specialist and Spearhead Training have working in partnership for over twelve years.
The client's philosophy is to 'Always Exceed Customer Expectations', which they believe to be a catalyst for successful and sustainable business relationships.
The client and Spearhead worked in partnership to develop professional training programmes for key staff in order to meet the client's business objectives.
Initially, the training involved all customer facing staff from the telesales team, the field sales team and customer service staff. However, due to the success of the relationship, the work developed to include the project managers who were responsible for the implementation of systems with customers.
In addition Spearhead has delivered management training to supervisors and managers in the organisation as part of the professional development of its Management Team.
One of the challenges faced in working together was that the company has a policy for employing high quality ambitious and intelligent staff.
One of the reasons for choosing Spearhead was that the training delivery had to be highly interactive and interesting. The aim was to engage talented people but it also had to be challenging so that skills were developed in order that the business achieved it’s commitment to customers.
In addition, as with any growing company, the training had to deliver value for money and also be highly cost effective.
Another challenge faced was due to the consistent growth of the company. Very often, once an in-house training programme had been delivered, a new member of staff would join the company.
This is where Spearhead’s open courses were of use in order to ensure that all staff received training when required. In addition, staff that had specific training requirements could also be catered for by the open course portfolio.
The company has a client retention rate of 95% and built up a portfolio of over 700 clients both industry and UK-wide. From foundation the business rapidly became one of the top three suppliers in the market place and has enjoyed strong, stable growth since then. They have also won numerous awards such as being listed as one of the Thames Valley's Best Technology Companies in the Thames Valley Business Awards.
Fastest Growing Financial Services Consultancy
Graduate Development Programme
The client is one of the UK's leading and fastest growing consultancies in the Financial Services Industry. By building long term client relationships, the business aim is to provide trusted advice, high service standards and personalised delivery.
The client's business objective is to grow the business organically by acquisition, delivering a strong, sustainable business for the long-term. They plan to continue developing their services to enhance their reputation for delivery of high quality services and advice.
As a key part in developing their business strategy, the company provides a structured graduate training programme for their Account Manager roles, with the opportunity for professional qualifications and fast-track career progression.
As part of the graduate programme Spearhead is involved in the consultancy, design, deliver and measurement of the training.
Part of the challenge is to engage lively, ambitious and intelligent individuals to ensure that the training delivered translates into improved business performance.
The graduate programme contains three levels as follows:
1. Trainee Account Manager
2. Account Manager
3. Senior Account Manager
Spearhead Training has worked in partnership with the client for over ten years. In this time revenue has doubled and profit margins have increased by 10%.
International Manufacturer of Industrial Pumps
Managing Distributors & Global Sales Agents
The client, an international manufacturer of industrial pumps, identified significant growth potential in key global business areas of oil and gas extraction, water and power generation. The key regions for the global business are Mid East, Asia Pacific, China, India and South America.
The company has a team of Area Managers based in the key regions, responsible for managing distributors and sales agents.
One of the key challenges the client faced was to make agents much more pro-active, especially with regard to servicing of existing equipment. The margins for the aftermarket are much bigger than new equipment sales and are therefore critical for the business. There was also a lack of ownership by agents of order execution to ensure end customer satisfaction.
A development programme was designed to provide more structure in regard to strengthening and managing the ongoing working relationship between the distributors and agents.
The training had to be very practical and run in workshop style in order to engage the Area Managers, all of whom were very experienced and already successful.
The initial programme was so well received, that other modules were delivered that included the following subjects:
Growth in revenue from agents achieved double figures as well as achieving double digit profit margins.
Leading Lens Supplier
Telesales & Customer Service Training
The client, a leading contact lens manufacturer selling products via opticians, has two main markets. The first are the National retailers and the second are the many independent opticians across the UK.
The client's strategy is to provide high levels of service, cost effectively to their market place.
They achieve this by having two levels to their sales force: the field sales force who service the National retailers and the telesales team who service the independents.
The two teams also complemented one another. The telesales team keep in regular contact with the Nationals in between the Field Sales visits to keep the retailers updated with promotions and special deliveries. They even make appointments on behalf of the Field Salespeople when appropriate.
As the contact lens market is highly competitive with many high quality suppliers, the client recognised that a major component to their continued success was in providing a high level of service to their customers.
Their objective was to be seen as a high quality company that looked after its customers professionally.
They therefore appointed a New Head of Telesales specifically chosen for the job of delivering the company vision. She recognised that in order to deliver the challenging targets whilst providing a professional image, training would be essential in order to develop the skills of the team.
Spearhead Training were commissioned to deliver a modular training programme to develop the skills of the team.
Spearhead were approached because the client company had already used our open courses to train their Field Sales Staff.
Spearhead was asked to design and deliver training to develop the skills of some of the more experienced members of the team, who had been doing the job for a number of years.
The programme was so successful that the project was extended to include training of the customer service team.
The company continues to succeed in the competitive contact lens market place by linking high activity and professional standards of performance, cost effectively.
The Stages of Working In Partnership
In Company assignments may go through the following nine stages, although not all stages are appropriate to every project. Every client is in some way unique and this will be reflected in the method of implementation used.
Stage 1. You make an in company enquiry.
Some enquiries are fully detailed tender documents others are simply an idea, (often not too focused at this stage). This is fine, the earlier we talk the more input we can make and this will increase opportunities to make the training more effective and efficient. Sometimes training is not the solution and we will say so.
Stage 2. We Respond.
Usually one of our Course Directors will ring you back and an initial discussion will take place over the telephone.
Stage 3. A Briefing Meeting.
It is essential for us to get the facts from you as we can not assimilate your style, culture and philosophies from a distance.
Stage 4. Field Work.
At this stage it may be necessary to conduct an audit or research in order to make a proposal. Often this step is after the proposal has been made and forms part of the preparatory process.
Stage 5. A Detailed Proposal.
Simple, or complex, we put forward what we believe needs doing, how we are going to do it, costs and suggestions for ensuring effectiveness.
Stage 6. Preparatory Work.
Once the proposal has been accepted we will start the detailed process of preparing the materials. This is one of the keys to Spearhead Training’s success: we take more trouble than most to get it right. This shows up in the repeat business that comes from clients. Over 90% (even though they may only initially ask us for one programme) invite us to carry out further work with them. It also enables us to give our simple guarantee, which is: “You will be totally satisfied with all Spearhead Training work”.
Stage 7. Deliver the Training.
Sometimes coupled with other work, such as field visits. Maybe just one programme lasting months or even years. Whatever it is we work to ensure that the programme objectives are met.
Stage 8. Provide Support.
A full range of pre- and post- training support options are available. We will work with you and provide those appropriate to your needs.
Stage 9. Review.
Many review methods, techniques and processes are possible. We work with you using those appropriate to the contract. Often feedback from review meetings helps focus management on the future direction.
For a no-obligation discussion about your training needs, please complete the enquiry form or call +44(0)1608 644144 today.
For a no-obligation discussion about your training needs, please complete this form