I've been having a LOT of conversations with clients lately about using scripts for their sales teams. The pushback, as you can imagine, is pretty uniform.
"I don't want my team to sound like robots!"
"My target customers won't respond to someone using a script."
"I hire good salespeople—they should know how to close customers without a script."
I understand where they are coming from. Scripts have gotten a bad rap because they are used by folks in call centers who interrupt your dinner to try to sell you home warranties, or car insurance, or timeshares. A bad script, poorly delivered, IS a truly awful sales tactic.
A well-crafted script, however, is the key to training new folks faster, getting them more confident in selling conversations, and making sure you have all the information you need from a prospect to determine if they are even likely to buy your product/service.
A GOOD script should have three elements: A solid beginning that gets to the point quickly, effective discovery questions, and a brief boilerplate explanation of your business that anyone can understand in two minutes or less. It should be bullet points - not written word-for-word, but with a fluid outline and key words and phrases that have proven effective when discussing your value proposition.
Put those three elements, elegantly written, in the hands of your sales team (new or old) and you'll have better sales results immediately.