The Counselor Approach to Problem-Solving Adds Value for Customers and Increases Deals Won

Business Issue

This nationwide staffing solutions and payroll services company, twice named to the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing U.S. companies, desired to break away from the commoditization and price-based selling that was happening throughout the staffing industry. The organization sought to implement a consistent brand experience by upskilling its employees, many who had non-sales backgrounds, with a consultative selling approach and by providing its managers with needed coaching skills to drive improved performance.

Solution Summary

The initiative began with an executive session that tied the approach to the sales strategy and created alignment around adopting a more consultative, partnership approach into the company culture. Managers completed online training with support from Wilson Learning senior coaches, followed by an in-person workshop to prepare them to coach their direct reports in the field and online. Participants (frontline salespeople) used a collaborative learning platform that supported online peer discussions and coaching from their managers and Wilson Learning senior coaches. Participants then attended application workshops to role-play and apply their new skills. As the VP of Sales expressed, “. . . a fantastic approach to facilitating a training, unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before, and I’ve been in this business for 22 years.”


  • Salespeople are creating value at the customer interface, winning deals based on the Counselor Approach to problem-solving and no longer using discounting as a closing technique.
  • “The training has been life changing for us . . . it has given us a process we didn’t have before. More importantly, it’s giving us an opportunity to coach our salespeople to be better at partnerships instead of just holding a vendor status.” —VP of Sales
  • “Salespeople have benefited by realizing that sales is not a “script” but a genuine business conversation between two people to work together as partners to achieve a common goal. It has also created a ‘common language’ in the company that has provided for more productive and creative coaching opportunities.” —Senior VP of Sales
  • “One of the greatest things I’ve noticed is our team’s level of participation.  I see them talking in our team chats and asking questions, like how do I get past the gatekeeper?” —VP of Sales
. . . a fantastic approach to facilitating a training, unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before . . .

— VP of Sales


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