blog Praised VESPA Sales Academy Is Based on Continuous Learning Share Working at Vaisala Innovations and Inspirations In 2017, Vaisala started VESPA – the Vaisala Environmental Sales Professional Academy – for the Weather and Environment sales personnel. VESPA is a module-based, global sales competence development program, and it has accumulated great feedback. Only through continuous evolvement and learning is it possible to keep developing our customer focus and achieve growth. Keeping this thought as the focal point, VESPA focuses on sales skills development in Vaisala’s Weather and Environment business area. It is a holistic training program that aims to develop the business-critical sales skills of our sales personnel as well as the leadership skills of our sales leaders. “The program is an umbrella under which we incorporate various modules and skill development courses to ensure continuous development of our sales personnel. While we use common themes globally, we adopt and customize each module for regional needs. Customer focus is at the core of what we do and the driver for growth. VESPA helps us capitalize on that customer focus. Our sales people have given us great feedback and feel that developing the many skills covered under the VESPA program help them to be more effective,” tells Matt Jones, Vice President, Weather and Environment, Americas. In VESPA, trainings are organized in three streams: sales essentials, managing and leading sales and specialization in different areas. The content of each of the training modules is adapted so that it meets the needs of different regions and teams in the best possible way. The groups are compiled depending on ideal group sizes and similar training needs, making sure that each participant can participate in the trainings that are relevant to them. One of the advantages of VESPA is that it promotes continuous learning. In VESPA, learning does not end at the course room door, but follow-up and refresh trainings are an integral part of the program – not to mention daily work, where the training outcomes are applied. Participants themselves as well as sales team leaders have a crucial role in ensuring that the takeaways from VESPA become part of daily work, which is strengthened by active coaching and follow-ups. “The sales team leaders participate in VESPA modules and through active coaching support their own team members in taking the lessons into action. We plan to have continuous follow-up sessions as well,” Jones continues. As such VESPA is a continuous program for Vaisala’s sales personnel. “The initial VESPA content was planned together with region heads and sales team leaders in 2017. After each VESPA training session, we collect feedback, and the reception has been very positive globally. The content of the program evolves over time, as we fine-tune modules and create new ones according to the feedback and business needs. Thus we will be able to always keep up with new trends and enable growth and development through up-to-date trainings,” explains Tiina Baniba-Atoko, VESPA Program Manager.