100 Modern Sales Enablement Best Practices
Welcome to the 100 Sales Enablement Best Practices!
We set out to curate best practices from sales enablement practitioners in the trenches so we could publish them for the benefit of the sales community. We invited sales enablement leaders to submit their best practice suggestions and we received a high volume of submissions. We didn’t require each contributor to have “sales enablement” in their title. However, we did require each contributor to be involved in a sales enablement leadership role.
As we reviewed all the submissions, it was difficult to select one hundred. We eliminated duplicate submissions and arrived at a collection of 100 best practices provided by actual practitioners.
We found the submissions to span five categories: Strategy, Leadership and Management, Training and Development, Content and Cadence, and Sales Coaching. While there were common threads, each best practice is a unique perspective on what all sales enablement leaders strive to achieve: provide sellers the tools, skills, methods, content and processes to enable them to create more sales conversations, build their pipeline, nurture prospects, and improve win rates.
We sincerely thank all those who took the time to submit their best practice tips!
We hope you find these sales enablement best practices as valuable as we do.
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As you might surmise, this section includes best practices on a wide range of topics, including the importance of social selling, measuring results, networking and more. It includes shared insights on the behavior changes required when implementing a sales enablement strategy. Often, this demands that success is measured by more than revenue. To instill behavior change, it’s important to measure how opportunities are moving along the funnel rather than limiting measurement to closed-won and closed-lost opportunities.
#1: John Allison
Title: Managing Director
Company: Enable Sales Academy Ltd
Best Practice: Wherever you are in the journey pause. Revisit how your customers or prospects buy, who may be involved in or influence the buying decision, how they access information, and what impacts their decision-making process.
Then relook at the sales process including marketing messaging and ask yourself:
- How are we helping the customer navigate their way to our solution?
- How are our sales conversations driving forward sales momentum?
- How are our coaching conversations enabling our salespeople?
#2: Heidi Angell
Title: Sales Enablement Manager
Company: Henry Schein One
Best Practice: Measure everything and then tweak and adjust. You cannot know what is and is not working if you do not measure, and if you don’t measure then you may throw out an excellent program that just needed to be tweaked.“You cannot know what is and is not working if you do not measure, and if you don't measure then you may throw out an excellent program that just needed to be tweaked.” - @HeidiAngell @HenryScheinOne #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3jr Click To Tweet
#3: Patrick Aitken
Title: Director, Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Enablement is talent activation. My philosophy is to find the people that have the most potential to make an impact on the business and help to make them successful in their endeavors. If you do that, you are doing a great job.“My philosophy is to find the people that have the most potential to make an impact on the #business and help to make them successful in their endeavors.” - @patrickaitken @Skedulo #DigitalSales #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#4: Toni Bradley
Title: Sales Enablement Manager
Company: Cardiovascular Systems Inc
Best Practice: From the ground level of sales reps to the cross-functional partners and C-Suite support, the relationships and building trust are critical to the success I will have going forward in this role. Where there is room for me to learn and grow, I am navigating through the lens of various internal partners and understanding their role, decision making, as well as strengths and weaknesses.
#5: Thomas Capone
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Best Practice: Listen more than you speak. Your clients and customers will tell you the best path forward, if you just listen.“Listen more than you speak. Your clients and #customers will tell you the best path forward if you just listen.” - @Thomas_Capone @NY_DLA #SalesLeadership #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#6: Richard Downes
Title: Sales & Marketing
Company: Burris Inc.
Best Practice: Build relationships.“Build relationships.” - @R_Downes @BurrisOffice #Sales #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#7: Chad Dyar
Title: Director of Sales Enablement and Strategy
Best Practice: Align all strategic efforts across the customer-facing teams and schedule regular account reviews to measure the impact of enablement initiatives.“Align all strategic efforts across the #customer facing teams and schedule regular account reviews to measure the impact of #enablement initiatives.” - @chadtd1 @HearsaySystems #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#8: Abel Flint
Title: Marketing Manager
Best Practice: Work directly with sales.
#9: Hermann Handa
Title: Head of Sales Effectiveness
Best Practice: Role plays. Write up role-play ‘guides’ (not scripts) for various scenarios: opportunity qualification, objection handling, etc.
The following are critical to success:
- Run the sessions on a weekly basis at a set time (Tuesdays are great).
- Incorporate new ideas from reps and create a library of the content.
- Have the reps provide feedback to their peers.
- More senior reps should also play the role of the prospect.
Some reps will initially dislike it, but I’ve never had a situation or team, where reps did not come around and look forward to the role-play sessions.
#10: Ben Harris
Title: Director, Global Sales Performance
Best Practice: Treat your partners as you treat your internal sellers. There is very little that you provide your internal sellers that partners cannot have access to. Go ahead, invite them to your coffee talks, your trainings, your SKO. Anything that helps build the team will help overall.
#11: Caroline Holt
Title: Executive Vice President, Revenue Enablement
Best Practice: First, getting a seat at the table and building a business case both require that you serve as the salesperson, the product person, the implementation lead and the renewal/upsell account manager. Channel your inner product person by starting with a needs assessment that focuses on what business challenges your internal customers have to solve.
- What questions do you need to have answered before you come up with your solution?
- What’s the cost of the problem you are trying to address?
- What is the cost of your solution and will your “market” bear it?
Channel your salesperson by preparing well, teaching them something to challenge assumptions, then discover the need. Also, remember slides & messaging should reflect the level of altitude of your audience. But once you have a critical challenge worthy of solving, be politely persistent in your focused requests to get mindshare and support. And don’t go just for the buyer. Engage and collaborate with how this will help the sales leaders. Collaborate, don’t create in a vacuum then try to push out.
Next, put on your customer success/implementation hat and truly enable your internal customers. Ensure you’re still aligned on priorities, start with the results you want to measure, then share a solid plan to deliver. Ensure you resell and engage implementers (e.g. line managers) who weren’t consulted but now have to help engage their teams or staff. Ensure their voices and the reality of your vision includes their reality of execution and utility. Be prepared to make changes and tweaks.
Finally, put your account management hat on for renewal and upsell. Ensure internal client requests are addressed (if only to say “I got your note… working on it”) on the same day. Track the progress and impact. Deliver on time. Run towards metrics and impact. Make certifications and follow-ups a part of the process, not an afterthought. Then use your wins to build momentum and ask for more initiatives, budget, tech or staff.
#12: Haley Katsman
Title: Vice President, Growth Enablement & Operations, Account Development
Best Practice: Salespeople require more than content alone to sell successfully. In an age where buyers expect a hyper-personalized experience, sellers need guidance on what they need to know, say, show, and do for every unique buyer engagement. Sales enablement teams should build sales plays that bring content and training to life – preparing reps to have the most effective customer conversation possible. To ensure the sales plays land internally, sales enablement teams would do well to begin the creation of any new play by asking these six foundational questions:
- Why build the play?
- Who is my audience?
- Who is my customer?
- Who are my play builders?
- What’s in it for my audience?
#13: Michael Krzmarcik
Title: Senior Sales Enablement Program Manager
Best Practice: Network and collaborate with everyone at your company!
#14: Mike Kunkle
Title: Vice President, Sales Enablement Services
Best Practice: As enablers, we encourage our sales reps to diagnose first, then prescribe. This same advice applies to us, as sales enablement practitioners, to improve our impact on sales results.
This means that we must become expert diagnosticians, rather than reacting to every bright shiny object or executive overreaction to the last thing that went wrong.
My best advice is to get a foundation of the sales enablement building blocks in place, or at least the building blocks that you choose to establish as part of sales enablement at your company.
To strategically pick which building blocks to establish (if you’re starting a function) or which to add or evolve (if you already lead a sales enablement function), you must assess your sales force (strategy, sellers, managers, systems, processes, methodologies, etc.). Look for the capability gaps that are holding your sales force back from moving from your current state to your desired future state. Then, assess those gaps against the building blocks framework, to determine how you can best support this year’s strategic initiatives.
Next, share your findings with senior leaders and establish or update your charter to get everyone aligned across functions. This will solidify your plan to systematically close those gaps and will allow you to collaborate effectively to execute against the plans. There’s an old saying that focused attention beats brilliance, every time. A focused, aligned plan will keep you and others focused and at least help avoid the momentary distractions and random acts of enablement, which don’t truly address root causes or improve performance.
I believe sales enablement leaders of the future will need a solid foundation in general consulting skills, problem-solving, decision-making, business acumen, organization development, organization behavior, change management, and performance consulting/HPT. The above is a good start toward the type of strategic thinking and performance consulting approach that will deliver organizational results and elevate our profession. Hope it helps!“My #BestAdvice is to get a foundation of the sales enablement building blocks in place, or at least the building blocks that you choose to establish as part of #SalesEnablement at your company.” - @Mike_Kunkle @SPARXiQ #B2B… Click To Tweet
#15: Paul Lewis
Title: Digital Sales Enablement Lead
Company: Pitney Bowes
Best Practice: Ensure that members of your sales organization are connecting with each other on LinkedIn. As a result, they will all be able to capitalize on a large network and leverage it to maximum effect.“Ensure that members of your #sales organization are connecting with each other on #LinkedIn. As a result, they will all be able to capitalize on a large network and leverage it to maximum effect.” - @paul_a_lewis @PitneyBowes… Click To Tweet
#16: Jared Litwin
Title: Vice President, Global Enablement
Best Practice: When connecting a business outcome to sales enablement activities, focus your gaze toward the top of the funnel. Call connects, pitches completed, moving deals to the next stage. Focusing too much on creating pipeline or revenue as the outcome makes it hard to drive the sales behavior you want to improve.“Focusing too much on creating pipeline or #revenue as the outcome makes it hard to drive the #sales behavior you want to improve.” - @JaredLitwin @salesforce #BestAdvice #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#17: Anna Muskett
Title: EMEA Sales Director
Company: Kodak Alaris
Best Practice: Leverage social selling & social media as part of your sales strategy. Use this to become known in the marketplace, give insight, build your brand, grab attention, provide thought leadership and earn the right to talk to your prospects and customers and deliver value to them.“Leverage #SocialSelling and #SocialMedia as part of your #sales strategy. Use this to become known in the marketplace, give insight, build your brand, and provide thought-leadership.” - @Musketta @AlarisWorld #SalesEnablement… Click To Tweet
#18: Bryan Naas
Title: Director, Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Leverage sales focus groups anytime you are launching a new initiative. Focus groups allow you to get feedback to ensure you are providing the right value to the team but also give you built-in champions when you launch to the team.'Leverage #sales focus groups when you are launching new initiatives. Focus groups allow you to get feedback to ensure you are providing the right value to the team but also give you built-in champions.' - @bryannaas @lessonly… Click To Tweet
#19: Armin Ribis
Title: Director, Business Line Manager
Best Practice: Integrate social selling activities of each sales rep into the company-wide customer journey and also into the CRM based sales processes.
#20: Cathy Rowell
Title: Vice President, Enablement
Company: Nectar Services Corporation
Best Practice: Engage your sellers as you define and implement your enablement process. Make sure you listen to seller input and incorporate it into your overall strategy. This is your audience, and showing you listened will help to engage as well as create buy-in. Some ways you can involve sellers on a regular basis include selecting a sales champion and/or creating an advisory council.“Engage your #sellers as you define and implement your #enablement process. Make sure you listen to seller input and incorporate it into your overall #strategy.” - @CathyGRowell @NectarUC #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#21: Scott Sargent
Title: Sales Enablement Programs Lead
Best Practice: Start your onboarding with a positive client experience. I use a client testimonial video that speaks to the business outcomes that our client gained from using our product. This captures the onboarding group’s attention right away and sets the tone for the rest of the training. It is also a great focal point to reference as you progress through the rest of the onboarding tracks.
#22: Shawnna Sumaoan
Title: Senior Director
Company: Sales Enablement PRO
Best Practice: To uplift the authority and importance of sales enablement as an industry and within organizations, sales enablement practitioners must work collectively to establish robust sales enablement analytics in the areas that are proven to drive significant business impact. A few areas that have been highly effective in several sales enablement organizations are metrics that:
- Put the customer experience first.
- Drive rep competency and behavior change.
- Improve sales culture and rep retention.
#23: Doug Wyatt
Title: Director, Sales Enablement Services
Best Practice: Execute sales enablement initiatives through sales management rather than having it be something that happens to them. Work closely with front-line sales managers to define and shape needs, then validate and optimize your solutions with them as your champions. Communicating with them directly months before an initiative launches garners buy-in, ensures that your new tool or resource is well-aligned, and maximizes its ability to be well-adopted at launch. The worst thing you could do would be to have your front-line managers find out about something new just as their sellers do. Change is scary and humans can be defensive when surprised with something new, no matter how useful a new enablement tool might be. Front-line managers can be the best champions for your hard work!
#24: Gunjan Yogendra
Title: Senior Manager
Best Practice: While setting up and scaling up the sales enablement function, focus on building a Center of Excellence with a service culture for your sales force. The latter being charismatic, will not acknowledge the function’s existence without an internal NPS survey.“While setting up and scaling up the #SalesEnablement function, focus on building a Center of Excellence with a service #culture for your #sales force.” - @gunjan_yogendra @Genpact #BestAdvice #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#25: Elena Zwetsloot
Title: Director of Sales Enablement
Company: Women in Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Before you start implementing sales enablement or even hire someone to do it for you, make sure you have a clear strategy and an end goal to what you want to achieve with this and the destination you want to get to. Sales enablement is made up of various components and you should not aim to address them all at once. Take time to strategize and decide the priorities.
Hiring in sales will have a crucial effect on your sales enablement plans so make sure you are plugged in early in that process and work on the desired sales profiles together with HR and/or the hiring managers.
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The key focus of the Leadership and Management best practices is securing buy-in from the C-suite down to individual contributors. This is a common pain point for sales enablement leaders at many organizations, which is why this category contains the highest number of submissions.
The tips range from how to secure initial funding for sales enablement, how to improve cross-functional collaboration, and how to view all initiatives through the eyes of the seller.
#26: Bill Ball
Title: Director of Learning & Development
Best Practice: Measurement appears to be a challenging topic for sales enablement. One reason may be the desire to establish a direct link from a sales enablement. Initiative to a result, such as “% of time back for selling.” Senior executives may see value in that, but what they care about most is the scoresheet. The problem with measuring sales enablement’s influence on end results like “quota attainment” is that there are numerous factors to contend with, namely the role of the First Line Sales Manager. However, if we walk back from quota, there are stages and conversion rates in the sales process which serve as milestones to that end number. If these milestones aren’t hit, we don’t get there, period. Why not show sales enablement’s influence on these milestones?
- Collaborate internally to identify a milestone gap, like a poor conversion rate between stages, or number of first meetings
- Align with internal stakeholders to pursue this as an initiative.
- Design an experience (workshops, collateral, etc) with stakeholders and top performers to influence the gap.
- Deliver proof of concept to stakeholders, make edits, then execute across the audience.
- Measure the before and after relative to time needed to see an improvement, IE three months before and three months after.
- Per Tamara Schenk’s book “Sales Enablement: A Master Framework to Engage, Equip, and Empower A World-Class Sales Force”, measure in two ways:
- Quantitative – The before and after numbers – This is your play-by-play.
- Qualitative – Capture win stories from your audience (like a distro or a chat group). This is your color commentary. Together, they tell a story.
- Iterate based on not only results, but after gaining feedback from your audience throughout the initiative.
#27: Paul Bickford
Title: Worldwide Director, Sales & Channel Enablement Programs
Best Practice: Assess the talent in the organization against defined competencies and culture of the organization. You can teach skills and knowledge and empower people with the right tools. But, if you haven’t taken the time to assess and ensure you have the right people in the right spots, you could have a huge blind spot when it comes to talent and ability for both sales and sales leadership, all the way to the top of the sales organization. Few companies spend the energy and money to do so. Otherwise, you could very well be “putting a bandaid on open-heart surgery.”
#28: Hang Black
Title: Head of Global Sales Enablement
Company: Juniper Networks
Best Practice: If you’re thinking of building, expanding, or modernizing your sales enablement practice, here are some things you need:
- A seat at the table and organizational alignment. Sales enablement only succeeds with C-suite sponsorship from the top and sales leadership adoption from our peers. The former drives the latter, and the latter drives true adoption among the boots on the ground.
- Build a team with cognitive diversity and insatiable curiosity.
- Develop scalable frameworks for Onboarding, Ongoing, and Excellence programs. Slow down to speed up. Don’t start by creating and transmitting content without the seller’s buy-in on the consumption plan.
- Align sales methodology to the sales process, including “must-have” resources at every stage of the deal.
- Drive all this engagement by modernizing your sales enablement tool stack.
- Finally, leverage all this internal goodness to deliver a world-class sales enablement program to your partners.
#29: Bob Britton
Title: Founder & President
Company: Sales Enablement Sherpas, LLC
Best Practice: Do NOT create Sales Enablement programs/solutions without FIRST understanding which METRIC/KPI you’re trying to impact and ensuring as many impacted stakeholders as practical are informed of the changes you’re making and, where it makes sense to do so, are given a voice in how the changes will be shaped and implemented.
#30: Debbie Bruce
Title: Sales Skills Enablement
Company: Aruba / HP Enterprise
Best Practice: Obtaining executive buy-in for skills program. Source most awesome keynote speaker who supports the type of program for which you want approval to speak at SKO event. Survey attendees on value/further interest of that particular keynote topic. Share results with the executive team. Invite key executives to attend an executive forum with peers on the same topic. Build proposal for rollout, expected outcome, measurement, resources needed, timing. Get 20 mins of time on exec staff call. Pitch the proposal. Get the funding. Bingo!
#31: Tom Burland
Title: Director, Sales Enablement
Company: Spectrum Enterprise
Best Practice: Any program launched has to have a management reinforcement/governance plan. Investment without reinforcement is like scattering seeds on a hill and hoping wheat will grow.'Any program launched has to have a #management reinforcement/governance plan. #Investment without reinforcement is like scattering seeds on a hill and hoping wheat will grow.' - @TomBurland @RCG_Global_Svcs #SalesEnablement… Click To Tweet
#32: Toby Carrington
Title: Vice President of Revenue Operations
Best Practice: Make sure you really validate the use cases you are trying to solve with your sales and marketing teams. Ensure that the core elements of your tech stack bring real value in solving business problems and don’t just look at particular features or functions without truly understanding the value to your field force.
#33: Heidi Castagna
Title: Senior Director, Global Field Enablement
Best Practice: All Enablement starts with sales objectives, identifies required knowledge skills & behaviors to deliver on those objectives, and then moves to people, process and tools. Eventually leading to decisions and actions that include training topics, technology platforms, sales methodologies, etc. Too many enablement practitioners look to find & apply best-in-class practices without a true strategy, resulting in ‘random acts of enablement.
#34: Gayle Charach
Title: Head of Americas’ Sales Effectiveness
Best Practice: Set up a Sales Advisory Council! While you are working top-down with VPs & directors of sales, the council gives you an opportunity to work bottoms-up with the feet on the street. This group is by nomination (their manager), spends 1 hr/month representing their teams on a monthly meeting and acts as a beta test group for pilot programs. They can advise other company enablers (Marketing/L&D, etc) as well.“Set up a #Sales Advisory Council! While you are working top-down with VPs and directors of sales, the council gives you an opportunity to work bottoms-up with the feet on the street.” - @gcharach @FireEye #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips Click To Tweet
#35: Dan Cilley
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Company: Vendor Neutral
Best Practice: When selecting a sales enablement platform don’t start with the technology. You should begin with an understanding of your process, priorities, and challenges from the perspective of the stakeholders involved. Each has their own perspective on how a sales enablement platform may help or hinder their individual organization’s success. Without their support, onboarding a new platform will be difficult and you will not see the adoption and results you are looking forward to.
Alignment of the stakeholders, an audit of what technology may already exist and an understanding of your own capabilities to utilize the new technology should all be considered prior to engaging any vendors.'When selecting a #SalesEnablement platform don’t start with the #technology. You should begin with an understanding of your process, priorities and challenges from the perspective of the stakeholders involved.' - @Vendor_Neutral… Click To Tweet
#36: Pam Dake
Title: Senior Director of Global Sales Enablement
Best Practice: The role of sales enablement today has expanded well beyond serving just the Sales organization. The best Enablement leaders align all internal stakeholder teams (Product, Marketing, Engineering, Services, etc.) to not only better serve all of sales, but in effect, better serve your customers as all internal teams are now contributing to the company’s overall strategy, “in-the-know” with who is doing what, and driving towards the same goal of long term, growing, and successful customer relationships.
#37: Boris Goncharov
Title: Head of Sales Strategy & Enablement
- Design a sales process that matches desired sales outcomes by asking yourself what you really want to change in your sales organization.
- Align your three enablement pillars: skills, structure, compensation. Make sure that your sales structure allows sales reps to follow the desired process that is in line with your incentive and compensation scheme.
- Think about sales enablement as a holistic transformation engine.
#38: Nicholas Gregory
Title: Senior Director, Global Sales Enablement
Company: Automation Anywhere
Best Practice: Invest more to properly enable your first-line sales leaders. First-line sales leaders arguably have one of the toughest jobs in sales and with so much attention given by sales enablement teams to improve sales reps’ performance, leaders often get left out. As first-line sales leaders’ primary responsibilities are to develop their teams and help them make their number, sales enablement has an obligation to provide leadership-focused enablement services to give leaders the skills necessary to achieve both of these objectives.
Provide such services as an end-to-end coaching framework or coaching content (whether “coach the coach” guides or training calls led by enablement) to continually reinforce current sales enablement initiatives. Concentrating some of your enablement services on this critical audience will help further scale your initiatives whether you’re a sales enablement team of 1 or 15 and in the end, is a proper investment proven to yield better sales results.
#39: Gavin Hugill
Title: Sales Enablement Director
Best Practice: Maximize outcomes by aligning goals, projects and resources from all functional disciplines. Setting of a charter and sales enablement advisory board allows for top to bottom and horizontal alignment and collaboration. Set a regular meeting cadence for the board and the cross-functional members and benefit from fewer silos and conflicts.
#40: Roderick Jefferson
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Company: Roderick Jefferson & Associates
Best Practice: Clearly articulate the value, not just the purpose of sales enablement! As sales enablement professionals, we often complain that senior leaders don’t understand the importance of our craft and don’t appreciate the value we add. In many cases, though, we are to blame for this lack of understanding and appreciation. One of your primary goals as a sales enablement practitioner should be to provide a roadmap around how to move from being viewed as “training” to being valued as a true business partner with sales and the multiple lines of business within a company.'One of your primary goals as a #SalesEnablement practitioner should be to provide a roadmap around how to move from being viewed as “training” to being valued as a true #business partner with sales.' - @ThevoiceofRod #VengresoTips… Click To Tweet
#41: Larkin Kay
Title: Senior Director, Field Enablement
Best Practice: Unify enablement: Sales takes everyone in the field working in unison. Sales engineers, post-sales, inside sales–so their enablement should be unified as well. From the tools they use to the learning paths they embark on.
Get started by:
- Modernizing your Field portal. All field content co-located in a searchable platform, that provides content producers robust analytics.
- Synchronizing sales and tech enablement calls.
- Rolling out a single place to conduct deal management and strategic account planning.
#42: Georgie Kuruvilla
Title: Technical Enablement Manager – APAC and Japan
Best Practice: Ensure you have a sponsor (VP Leader) and driver (Sales Managers) in all enablement initiatives. This would ensure commitment and desire for success to the initiative. Enablement should have a voice in the business and should be a part of the regional business planning meets and QBRs.
#43: Dave Lewark
Title: Manager, Enterprise Accounts
Best Practice: Look at everything you do and view it through the lens of the seller. If it adds work without driving an equal amount of impact to his or her sales success, think twice about implementing it.'Look at everything you do and view it thru the lens of the #seller. If it adds work without driving an equal amount of impact to his / her #SalesSuccess, think twice about implementing it.' - @DaveLewark @Xactly #SalesEnablement… Click To Tweet
#44: Dave Lichtman
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Best Practice: Hire sales enablement professionals who are inherently curious and have the ability to (respectfully) disagree with senior executives to fight for their ideas.'Hire #SalesEnablement professionals who are inherently curious and have the ability to respectfully disagree with senior executives to fight for their ideas.' - @lichtmandave #SalesLeadership #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#45: Michael Martin
Title: Director of Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Know the “why” before they “buy.” If you are not aware of the reasons behind the purchase or what their perceived outcome or benefit may be, you are not a true trusted advisor. By understanding their objectives, you have the opportunity to re-frame the conversation and avoid a bad sale.
In addition, by validating the solution, you’ll increase your credibility and differentiate yourself as well as your organization. Remember, the customer’s biggest need is for you to help them understand what they truly need!
#46: Stephanie Middaugh
Title: Senior Sales Enablement Manager
Company: Divvy, Inc.
Best Practice: When onboarding new hires, it can be easy to skip over or forget to train on essential systems they will use daily. These things included items like: Slack, Zoom, Gmail (especially if someone has been an Outlook user for most of their professional life) and even MacBook training for folks who have used PCs previously.
Productivity isn’t just related to the systems they will use within their particular role (although this is also incredibly important!). An easy win is to get people productive in your company systems first and then build from that foundation.
#47: John Moore
Title: Vice President of Revenue Enablement
Best Practice: Always begin with WHY and determine what business metric you are trying to impact.
Developing an onboarding program? Why? What business metric are you trying to impact?
Developing content to support a new product rollout? Why? What metric are you trying to impact?
When you are able to define what business metric you are trying to impact, you can:
- Shape your efforts around that outcome.
- Align organizations around common business goals.
- Gain executive sponsorship.
- Become business-critical.
Those that reactively just execute all the time are valued. Those that lift their heads up and ask WHY, are critical.'Always begin with WHY and determine what #business metric you are trying to impact.' - @ACollaborator @bigtincan #BestAdvice #Leadership #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#48: Erin Osman
Title: Vice President, Sales Enablement
Company: Dun & Bradstreet
Best Practice: A charter for a sales enablement organization is the most important initial step for the team to have the most significant impact on the overall growth of the business.
“Sales Enablement” is a term that is debated, misunderstood and overused. Every company has different needs depending on the knowledge and competency gaps of the sales organization. Align a charter to the growth plan with the team’s scope, anticipated outcomes along with tools and resources that will allow the team to execute. Most importantly, use the charter to set KPIs inline with the overall business strategy.
Do not come up with a charter on your own. Start with the sellers and other stakeholders: focus groups, surveys, and baseline data. Once aligned with these groups, enroll the executive team for full support. The charter should be the team’s North Star and guiding light to impact the growth of the business.
#49: Patricia Peral
Title: Head of Enablement
Best Practice: Identify your strategic needs versus your tactical needs and hire accordingly. Learning and development skills are as important as sales on your team.
#50: Paul Petroski, Jr.
Title: Sales Enablement Leader
Company: IBM Watson Health
Best Practice: When building a sales enablement team, look for a blend of people with backgrounds from Sales, Marketing, and Learning & Development to set yourself up with the best skills to tackle a variety of challenges.'When building a #SalesEnablement team, blend people with experience in Sales, #Marketing, and Learning and Development to set yourself up with the best skills to tackle a variety of challenges.' @PaulPetroskiJr @IBMWatsonHealth… Click To Tweet
#51: Adriana Romero
Title: Sales Enablement Manager
Best Practice: Make sure your enablement team has a variable component in line with the sales results.
#52: Jessica Ryker
Title: Sales Enablement Lead
Best Practice: The work you do and the goals you have must be tied to the goals of the business. How is your CEO being measured? What does success look like for your sales organization? By aligning your goals to that of the business, you can secure partnerships and advocates as well as much more easily show ROI.
#53: Chris Sargent
Title: Senior Director, Sales Enablement
Company: NICE inContact
Best Practice: How do I make the sales process permeate the organization and become adopted as an organizational process? When it comes to the sales process and methodology, there are countless options and choices in the market. I once heard a speaker say that of all of the process and methodologies, the best and most effective is the one you use.
When looking to standardize on a process, it’s important to recognize that the customer journey most likely will start before they interact with a seller in your organization and will continue post-sale with your organization. Why would you not include all of these departments from the very get-go?
To be able to build a foundation and champion for the process from your product, marketing, sales, support and services organizations takes your sales process to a company process. It benefits not only the company internally but also the customer who receives a consistent experience with your capabilities and brand.
#54: Jason Schober
Title: Social Selling Program Manager
Best Practice: Sales enablement professionals are the connector for sales and marketing alignment. Make sure that tools and training are agreed upon by both sales and marketing.
#55: Tonya Schultz
Title: Vice President, Global Sales and Service Enablement
Best Practice: When rolling out a sales initiative or strategy, it is critical to start and end the process with front line managers. Ensure leadership has a part in the launch of sessions to create the vision and wraps rollout with their expectations. EVERY enablement initiative needs a full leadership enablement plan to accompany it to truly be effective. Make it easy for them to make the project successful together!
#56: David Sill
Title: Head of Sales Enablement
Company: ZoomInfo (Powered By DiscoverOrg)
Best Practice: Do whatever it takes to trumpet the Enablement message from the C-suite. If the executive team says it’s important to get to the gym regularly, then getting to the gym regularly becomes virtuous. If not, if that alignment doesn’t exist, it’s easy to push the “hard part” of Enablement to the side in the mad dash to hitting numbers. Strive for BOTH.'Do whatever it takes to trumpet the #SalesEnablement message from the C-suite.' - @davidsill @ZoomInfo #BestAdvice #SalesLeadership #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#57: Sheevaun Thatcher
Title: Vice President, Head of Global Sales and Growth Enablement
Best Practice: It is much more difficult to get support (resources, time and investment) for your enablement programs if you do not create a charter of political support right from the very top of the corporate structure. It’s imperative that you build those relationships BEFORE you ask for funding and support. Because even the best programs, most amazing team and an unlimited wallet won’t save an enablement program if sales leadership doesn’t take accountability and be responsible FOR sales. Enablement is responsible TO sales to provide the best programs. When you have that support and accountability to sustain a culture of learning, you can have a high impact on AE and customer confidence resulting in increased revenue and more satisfied customers.'When you have the support and accountability to sustain a culture of learning, you can have a high impact on #customer confidence resulting in increased #revenue and more satisfied customers.' - @sheevaunt @RingCentral #Sales… Click To Tweet
#58: KC Whitaker
Title: Vice President, Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Cross-functional alignment and prioritization: Commit to a recurring call/ meeting with the senior leaders in Sales, Marketing, Product, Service. In the midst of constant-changing environments, weed through the noise with a consistent forum and foster an environment for collaborative decision making. Show a calendar of planned and proposed activities that will impact sales and allow the cross-functional leaders to prioritize and agree on the activities. Establish trust in what was agreed, sales enablement will drive execution through organized and planned communication and content that will be valuable to sales. Consistency earns trust, when they trust you they are more likely to stay aligned with sales enablement, which will have a positive impact on morale, productivity, and overall effectiveness.'Commit to a recurring call or meeting with the senior #leaders in sales, #marketing, product, service. Foster an environment for collaborative decision making.' - @kc_whitaker @IntradoDigital #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
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Sales enablement is a continuous process of learning and execution, especially as technology continues to transform the modern buying process. To achieve success with training programs, many respondents emphasized how important it is to understand the learning process. While in-depth training programs provide sellers with current techniques, to achieve the behavior changes mentioned in the Strategy section, some of the best practices in this section focus on the importance of peer-to-peer learning.
#59: Alice Heiman
Title: Founder and Chief Sales Officer
Company: Alice Heiman, LLC
Best Practice: Keep in mind that sales enablement is providing salespeople with what they need to successfully engage the buyer throughout the buying process. So much of what sellers are doing today is in no way engaging. STOP IT!
Spend time training salespeople on the customer. Who they are, what they need, what industry trends are affecting them and further teach them to understand their customer’s customer. We’re spending a lot of time and effort choosing tools for sales enablement. A great tool would be one that helps the sellers research and learn before they approach.'Keep in mind that #SalesEnablement is providing salespeople with what they need to successfully engage the #buyer throughout the buying process. So much of what #sellers are doing today is in no way engaging.' - @aliceheiman… Click To Tweet
#60: Stacey Jones
Title: Director, Sales Enablement
Company: GR8 People, Inc.
Best Practice: Research the Sales Enablement Society! Especially helpful for those new to this industry.'Research the @_SESociety! Especially helpful for those new to this industry.' - @sdjones103 @GR8People #SalesEnablement #BestAdvice #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#61: Nick Pilditch
Title: Head of Sales Enablement & M&A Integration
Best Practice: Remain open to ideas. You will never have all the answers but if you nurture a culture based on innovation and respect, then best practice is easy to share across disparate departments. Communicate with your peers and sales enablement experts around the industry and learn from their lessons; show value early on and adoption becomes easy.
#62: Lipika Subbiah
Title: Head of Sales Enablement, APAC LinkedIn Sales Solutions
Best Practice: Leverage peer-to-peer learning to introduce a new behavior change. The highest credibility in the field is afforded to top performers who are walking in the same shoes and delivering results with the new prescribed change whatever that may be. As such, it makes sense to leverage peer-to-peer learning to build advocacy. What I see is less resistance to change, less skepticism, and less apathy. In contrast, with peer-to-peer learning engagement is higher, adoption is faster, and the overall sentiment is more positive.
#63: Chris Watkins
Title: Senior Director, Global Sales Enablement
Company: New Relic
Best Practice: In the digital economy, the company that learns the fastest wins most often. One of the most critical success factors to a scalable and sustainable sales enablement strategy is fostering a culture of continuous learning at every level, from C-level to individual contributor. Even though there is great value in implementing talented enablement staff, best practice processes and productivity tools, if every employee doesn’t have a deep conviction to own their individual pursuit of professional development through continuous learning, even the best enablement teams will struggle to leverage their impact at scale.
#64: Srividhya V.S.
Title: Global Head – Sales Effectiveness
Best Practice: We actively promote learning among our sales representatives to keep abreast of the latest tools and techniques. Digital sales transformation augments the mantra that knowledge is the only currency that multiplies when you divide (or share) it.'#DigitalSales transformation augments the mantra that knowledge is the only currency that multiplies when you divide (or share) it.' - @streetsri @Infosys #SalesEnablement #SalesLeadership #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
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Content is an essential component of sales enablement, as it provides sellers the ability to answer questions and build relationships based on value. Many of the best practices include insights about content for sales enablement, how to produce it, how to identify goals, how to ensure content will be used properly, and where to store it for sellers to easily access the right content when it’s needed.
Some best practices also shared the importance of consistent meetings with sales and marketing to improve cross-functional communications and developing a regular cadence for sellers to share that content.
#65: Allen Biehl
Title: Director, Global Sales Enablement
Company: Snow Software
Best Practice: Clear the obstacles between the content and your audience. Ensure there are multiple paths to find and consume anything you publish.
#66: Kathryn Fish
Title: Senior Global Enablement Program Lead
Best Practice: Embrace agile enablement in your content creation and delivery. Be willing and ready to adapt to your company and industry’s needs as they become a priority. Don’t wait on perfection. Get your stuff out there and modify real-time based on learner/leader feedback, thus improving the overall quality and speed to delivery.'Embrace agile enablement in your #content creation and delivery.' - @kathrynsfish @CloudBees #SalesEnablement #ContentMarketing #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#67: Gaurav Harode
Title: Founder & CEO
Best Practice: The long term success of a sales enablement program is directly dependent on the health of the sales enablement team’s relationship with other groups. And in particular, their relationship with marketing. Consider marketing is giving you the necessary ingredients to build your recipes.The long term success of a #SalesEnablement program is directly dependent on the health of its relationship w/ other groups, particularly #marketing who is giving the necessary ingredients to build your recipes. @edorahg @enablix… Click To Tweet
#68: Justin Hayes
Title: Head of Enablement
Best Practice: Worry less about the tools and delivery medium of your enablement content and more on the narrative that content supports. By aligning assets and training around the stories you want your reps to tell about your brand or solution, you’ll get more content activation as well as feedback around their effectiveness.
#69: Sati Hillyer
Title: Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Best Practice: By 2025, 75% of the global workforce will be Millennial (Inc) and 75% of employees are more likely to watch a video than to read documents, emails or web articles (Forrester)… So if you’re not using video to engage and enable your sellers, you’re missing the mark. Video messaging is one of the most engaging forms of communication and can be used horizontally across the entire company for internal communications, executive/management updates, employee onboarding, pitch contests, training, certification and more. Supercharge your sales enablement with the power of video!'If you're not using video to engage and enable your #sellers, you're missing the mark. #Video is one of the most engaging forms of communication and can be used horizontally across the entire company.' - @sati @OneMob #Sales… Click To Tweet
#70: Cassandra Hitchcock
Title: Senior Manager Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Consistent meetings with marketing, product, and sales leadership with an output of slides to share with reps weekly is a great way to streamline cross-functional communications.
#71: Jeanne Hopkins
Title: Chief Marketing Officer
Best Practice: Build a regular cadence (daily tips, weekly update, monthly overview) that can be archived for easy access by Sales. Oftentimes, Sales wants to reference the information but cannot locate it when needed. Find a page (hidden landing page on your website, on a wiki, in your CRM, somewhere) that lists all of the incredible assets available for their sales success.'Build a regular cadence (daily tips, weekly update, monthly overview) that can be archived for easy access by #sales.' - @jeannehopkins @LolaTravel #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#72: Samer Mihyar
Title: Regional Marketing Manager
Company: Kodak Alaris
Best Practice: Always be yourself and ask the right questions when reaching out to a client.
#73: Ian Moyse
Title: EMEA Sales Director
Best Practice: Cadence is everything. Why? For me, Sales is about repeating good and strong behaviors on a consistent basis. Making sure the right questions are asked, removing white space, de-risking a sale at every stage. Making sales behaviors consistently good is hard. We all profess to be good salespeople, but our emotions, the daily life circumstances around us and being a human, not a robot can hinder us in this consistency. Until a behavior becomes habitual it takes work.
Take driving a car, learning feels clunky and you have to think about it. Once habitual its automatic second nature, you don’t think about changing gears, clutch, brake, etc. you just do it.
Making the best sales behaviors habitual for me is the most valuable skill to hone. A good way to assist and support this process is to have your CRM set with Cadence Dashboards to show each salesperson opportunities not touched in a week; opportunities with no next action, opportunities with an overdue action–rate each whitespace field to give an overall qualified score, etc.'#Sales is about repeating good and strong behaviors on a consistent basis. Making sure the right questions are asked, removing white space, and de-risking a sale at every stage.' - @imoyse @Natterbox #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips… Click To Tweet
#74: Michael Naumann
Title: Regional Practice Leader-Worksite
Company: Guardian Life
Best Practice: Utilize Zig Ziglar’s insight as a guide for posting actionable content on LinkedIn. “You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.”
Curate and share valuable content that network connections can leverage to accelerate the velocity of their success.
While “likes, comments, and shares” provide some feedback, you know you’re making an impact as a Sales Enabler when connections advise Posts and Articles influenced their sale’s strategy and tactics and enabled them to be more successful. By sourcing, scrubbing and then compiling expert insights and then sharing that wisdom as a “Knowledge-Broker,” connections can directly benefit from curated content.
#75: Dean Nicolls
Title: Vice President of Marketing
Best Practice: As marketing develops new online tools, like TCO calculators, it’s vital to have an internal sales champion who vets the tool, uses it to improve their sales process, and then evangelizes the tool to the rest of the sales organization. Without having an internal champion, the likelihood of that tool receiving much internal adoption is unlikely.'As #marketing develops new online tools, it’s vital to have an internal #sales champion who vets the tool, uses it to improve the process, and then evangelizes the tool to the rest of the organization.' - @Dean_Nicolls @jumio… Click To Tweet
#76: Dylan Niehoff
Title: Head of Marketing
Best Practice: You should always try to create and leverage content to address the most common objections or concerns. Make sure you have a kickoff meeting before and after the rollout. During kickoff, hit on the scenarios, key points and ideal outcomes of each piece. During the follow-up, you should measure the impact, collect feedback and repeat.
#77: Jen Spencer
Title: Vice President
Company: SmartBug Media
Best Practice: In most businesses, there’s a discernible gap between marketing and sales content. Marketing teams spend hours building strategies around customer characteristics, goals, and psychographics. Too often, that content is fumbled when it’s handed off to sales. The organization has all this content designed to attract the lead, but too much of the time, it doesn’t make it to the next stage.
For effective sales enablement, leaders need to equip their sales team with buyer persona battle cards. These arm the team with customer pain points and shed light on the customers’ goals. For instance, if you’re selling to a marketing professional, you probably know it’s their job—and likely part of their comp plan—to grow their company’s website traffic. This information is way more important than how many emails they’ve opened. It reveals what drives them. And that makes it easier to meet the customer’s needs.'Embrace agile enablement in your #content creation and delivery.' - @kathrynsfish @CloudBees #SalesEnablement #ContentMarketing #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#78: Steven Wright
Title: Certification Analyst
Company: Vendor Neutral
Best Practice: With over 20 years of sales enablement experience, and working with lots of vendors and practitioners, it all comes down to this: KNOW YOUR CONTENT. Whether it’s internal, external, hidden on hard drives–if you don’t know what sellers are using, and have a solution to encourage them to use the best content, the rest of sales enablement matters a whole lot less.'With over 20 years #SalesEnablement experience, and working with lots of vendors and practitioners, it all comes down to this: KNOW YOUR #CONTENT.' - @StevenWWright1 @Vendor_Neutral #VengresoTips #BestAdvice @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
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Ongoing coaching is imperative to reinforce the strategies, techniques and processes sales enablement implements. Often, this requires training sales leaders on how to coach individual reps. Consequently, some of the best practices in this section provide methods for supplying sales leaders answers to sellers’ most common questions. Others address the difference between team-wide training and the individualized process of coaching, as well as how to leverage technology and data to guide coaching sessions.
#79: Kristin Anderson
Title: Director of Strategic Accounts
Company: Baker Communications Inc.
Best Practice: One of the biggest challenges any sales enablement leader has is a lack of visibility to the variation of softs skills that exist in your sales teams. As a result, learning paths are not built on the basis of current skill level or known gaps but more or a blanket learning experience – a “peanut butter” approach.
One sales enablement best practice that we recommend to all our customers is to use data-driven analytics (a sales-specific assessment) to modernize your enablement approach. Data is king and using a sales-specific assessment will help you to:
- Create a baseline of the skills and competencies of the field so that your enablement can be hyper-targeted.
- Allow you to build a business case for training.
- Provide your teams a “mirror” so that as they wait for training, they are able to quickly self-identify where they can improve right away – no waiting necessary!
#80: Joe Booth
Title: Senior Director of Sales Enablement
Best Practice: Think outside the corporate box. Find coaching tips, team activities, and learning hacks from other disciplines like sports, nature, or art. Great ideas are all around us!'Think outside the #corporate box. Find #coaching tips, team activities, and learning hacks from other disciplines like sports, nature, or art. Great ideas are all around us!' - @joeboothlife @SecureAuth #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips Click To Tweet
#81: Jen Burns
Title: Senior Director, GTM Strategy, Enablement & Training
Best Practice: Leverage core KPI’s (3-4) and skill/fluency assessment data to inform ongoing (and reinforcement) enablement and training initiatives. This ensures you maximize efforts with targeted support for both onboarding & everboarding programs to increase revenue. A ‘one-size fits all’ approach does not work. You need to understand where the gaps and opportunities are to achieve growth.
#82: Cheryl McCurdy Christensen
Title: Chief Executive Officer and Founder
Company: Data2Develop, LLC
Best Practice: Start with the stakeholders involved and find out what is working, and what is not working. Don’t forget to include the sales reps (most critical voice). Review best practices from thought leaders and what data you currently have available and what data you need. Ensure the sales process is clear and the “what’s in it for me” is included for the sales team. My experience – understanding the contracting process, ease of doing business with your organization. Automate as much of this for the sales reps, centralizing all pieces and parts into a single repository that is accessible from a mobile device. Start collecting the data including results and identifying best practices at your organization. Coach to that model!'Review best practices from thought leaders and what data you currently have available, plus what #data you still need. Ensure the #sales process is clear and the “what’s in it for me” is included.' - @shibbyrae #SalesEnablement… Click To Tweet
#83: Phil Cleary
Title: Head of Sales Enablement, APAC
Best Practice: Enable your enablers. Whether you’re an individual contributor or run a team, everyone needs to sharpen the saw. We spend our lives training others and need to spend time enabling ourselves–facilitation skills, project/change management, coaching and so on. You have to model the behavior you want to see!'Enable your enablers. Whether you’re an individual contributor or run a team, everyone needs to sharpen the saw.' - @pclearytweets @salesforce #SalesEnablement #BestAdvice #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#84: Mike D’Angelo
Title: Enterprise Readiness Leader
Best Practice: Remember the ABCs: Always Be Coaching the ABCs.
Continuously & consistently coach the Attitudes, Behaviors & Competencies to drive a high-performance culture.'Remember the ABCs: Always Be Coaching the ABCs. Continuously and consistently coach the Attitudes, Behaviors and Competencies to drive a high-performance culture.' - @mcdgo @mindtickle #SalesCoaching #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips… Click To Tweet
#85: Matt Flamman
Title: Manager, Sales Development
Best Practice: At LinkedIn, I spend the majority of my time coaching sales organizations on the benefits and value of Sales Navigator, LinkedIn Sales Solutions’ flagship product for sales organizations.
When buyers make an investment in our software their sellers go through a change and it’s personal. While I understand why the change is beneficial for the business, you need to focus on the human dynamic and help your mobilizers make the transformation from today’s outdated to your modern solution as smooth as possible.
Here are 4 proven tactics to get your team excited about something new:
- Create Clarity – Be as clear as you can about the change.
- Explain Why – Share why you are making this change, why now, and why each rep is involved.
- Accountability – One person needs to be accountable for the change and it doesn’t have to be a leader. This person should regularly communicate the benefits of the change, encourage regular use and host workshops on best practices.
- Champions – Identify champions (both reps and senior leaders) and have them promote the change at your team meetings.
#86: Jill Guardia
Title: Executive Director
Company: TriNet Corporation
Best Practice: Push through the doubters and create the experience that puts your reps in their customer’s shoes. Understanding your buyer from their seat provides knowledge, empathy, and credibility that can’t be beat.
#87: Jeffrey Gunderson
Title: Sales Enablement Manager
Best Practice: Sales enablement is a two-way street. Make time for your team and deliver on their requests (big or small). Serve their favors first and when the time comes to ask your own favor of them–they will deliver. Adapt to them and they will adopt for you.
#88: Leon Hassid
Title: Sales Enablement & Training Lead
Best Practice: The single best way to measure sales enablement’s impact on the bottom line is by consistently and systematically measuring the organization’s or an individual rep’s sales velocity which is defined as:
# of Opps in the pipe * Win rate * Average Deal Size (or Average Selling Price)
/ Sales Cycle in Days
#89: Stacey Justice
Title: Vice President, Sales Strategy & Enablement
Best Practice: Put sales leadership first. No Sales Enablement program is successful without the support of your sales leadership to coach their teams on the principles or skills you’re trying to enable. Coach your coaches on what good looks like in your company, teach them how to run a good pipeline call or 1:1 with their rep, arm them with the content you plan to provide the reps before you roll it out to the field making them part of the process. Your programs and success will scale naturally with leadership involvement.
#90: Robert Koehler
Title: Director of Sales Effectiveness
Best Practice: To create impact and drive change, build long-term programs vs. one-time events.
Programs include prerequisites, blended learning, train-the-trainer, involving front line sales leadership before, during and after, debriefing after delivering components of the program with the audience and measuring before and after results.'To create impact and drive change, build long-term programs vs. one-time events.' - @RobertKoehler4 @Compass #SalesEnablement #SalesCoaching #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#91: Gary Mathia
Title: NDT Team Leader
Company: The Modal Shop
Best Practice: Over-communication is better than no communication!
#92: Steve Maxwell
Title: Vice President, Field Enablement
Best Practice: Shift your mindset from “what do my sellers need to know” to “what do my sellers need to be able to do.” When doing this it will narrow your focus to ensure the initiative, training course, exercise, etc. will be on point and how you will need to measure its effectiveness will become very clear.'Shift your mindset from 'what do my sellers need to know' to 'what do my sellers need to be able to do' to narrow your focus on #SalesCoaching.' - @smaxitwell @Datrium #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#93: Barbara Mazziotti
Title: Senior Director, Commercial Strategy & Enablement
Company: Waters Corporation
Best Practice: Measure the value of sales enablement coaching services.
While sales managers are expected to coach their reps on everything, there is great value to be had in establishing a supplemental enablement service around coaching opportunities to improve win rate by employing a few centralized sales coaches. The coaches should be experts in your sales methodology and/or specialized competitive strategy experts.
How can you afford to hire sales coaches?
It is relatively straightforward to track the ROI. Basically, you keep track of the opportunities that are coached, total up the value of those deals that are won, and compare the win rate of the coached deals vs the win rate of the deals that are not coached. The difference can be as much as 10-20 percentage points, meaning it is possible to have an un-coached win rate of 35% and a coached win rate of 55%. You can directly attribute the delta in the win rate (and the associated $ value) to the impact of the coaching services. For example, if you had $1 million worth of coached deals, and won $550k, then you could count a $200k direct value of the coaching services because without them you would have only won $350k.
#94: Terry Mitchell
Title: Director of Sales Enablement
Best Practice: We developed a list of sales effectiveness attributes and then had the individual seller and their manager rate each skill. The gap identified areas to improve skills. We then developed Personal Development Plans including specific actions such as role-plays and coaching to improve skills. This exercise has helped our team improve their sales performance.
#95: Ed Ross
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Best Practice: While measuring coaching is often discussed as best practice, we must understand the formula to ensure consistent development of talent. Here is a formula for success we provide our clients:
B x F = Px
Behavior multiplied by frequency equals performance.
This can be universally applied to high-and-low levels of performance. When coaching employees help them quantify the impact of their behaviors instead of focusing on one-off events.'Behavior multiplied by frequency equals performance.' - @thecoreresults #SalesCoaching #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#96: Alicia Schober
Title: Sales Enablement Program Manager
Company: Sage Intacct
Best Practice: Empower your sales teams not only at the 10,000 foot level with corporate-wide knowledge but at the 100-foot level capturing unique tribal knowledge of each department’s best practices.Empower your #sales teams not only at the 10,000-foot level w/ corporate-wide knowledge but at the 100-foot level capturing unique tribal knowledge of each department's best practices. @AliciaSchober @SageIntacct #SalesEnablement… Click To Tweet
#97: Bill Stinnett
Company: Sales Excellence, Inc.
Best Practice: The single most important factor driving sales rep behavior is “The Questions Their Manager Asks Them.” So, for any new tool, or process, or specific behavior you want to reinforce, provide sales managers with the specific related questions they can weave into their daily conversations with their salespeople.For any new tool, or process, or specific behavior you want to reinforce, provide #sales managers w/ the specific related questions they can weave into their daily conversations w/ their salespeople. @billstinnett @SalesExcel_US… Click To Tweet
#98: Allison Strother
Company: The Spur Group
Best Practice: When rolling out something new, answer the “WIIFM” question: what’s in it for me?
That involves helping your sales team understand the value to them of what you are delivering–not just the value to customers. Sales professionals are inundated, so cutting through the noise means connecting to what they care about.
#99: Julie Thomas
Title: President & Chief Executive Officer
Company: ValueSelling Associates
Best Practice: We see a lot of companies that are buying technology after technology, and tool after tool, and they’re getting ‘tool fatigue.’ It’s not solving the problem because at the end of the day, sales is still a communication discipline. Technology can do a lot – it will automate and amplify and make a lot of things easier for the reps – but it won’t make a sales call for you.#Technology can do a lot – it will automate and amplify and make a lot of things easier for the reps – but it won’t make a #sales call for you.' - @ValuSelling #SalesCoaching #SalesEnablement #VengresoTips @M_3Jr Click To Tweet
#100: Laura Welch
Title: Director, Sales Enablement, PS Services
Company: HP, Inc.
Best Practice: Poll sellers before & after webinars with the same questions – asking their level of understanding re: the intended outcomes for the session. This gives you a clear idea of how much they learned during the webinar.
Example: On a new product webinar, ask at the beginning, “How comfortable do you feel talking to a customer about this product/solution?” then asking that again at the end.
The best case is they say “Not at all” at the beginning and “I feel very comfortable” at the end of the webinar. This practice gives immediate feedback to you and your speakers and reinforces webinar outcomes for your participants!
Implement These Best Practices Today!
Sales enablement leaders are focused on providing sellers the tools and techniques they need to engage the modern buyer throughout the customer journey. The best practices shared here shed insights into how to:
- Improve your sales enablement program by implementing effective strategies.
- Provide sellers the right content and cadence techniques.
- Secure buy-in from executives and individual contributors.
- Combine training with continuous learning and development.
- Coach sales leaders on how they can coach sales reps on new strategies, techniques, and processes.
We hope you found these best practices as insightful as we did. And again, we want to express our gratitude to all the contributors for progressing the field by sharing their best practice tips.
Today’s modern buyer is digitally connected, socially engaged, mobile attached, and video hungry. Are your sellers effectively leveraging digital tools to find, engage and connect with prospects to create more sales conversations? Get your customized Digital Selling Benchmark Report to learn if your sales team has the digital selling skills needed to engage the modern buyer.