Sales Enablement is growing in popularity as a strategic methodology designed to have all sales people working on a common, collaborative framework with the entire business supporting them.
Sales Enablement focuses on the processes that improve skill and knowledge improvement for your sales team, which in turn helps lead to higher levels of efficiency and better execution of key sales initiatives.
For those thinking about applying sales enablement or even for those who have begun to implement it into their business, a workshop is either a great way to start or refine processes – in fact it is essential to the collaborative essence of Sales Enablement.
What outcomes can you expect from sales enablement workshops?
- Establishment of a documented Sales Enablement charter
Wow! That sounds formal! And it is because Sales Enablement is about having the maturity to be disciplined and accountable. The creation of a charter communicates the importance attached to your Sales Enablement process. A charter allows everyone to be on the same page, setting expectations regarding the challenges you expect to face, the ideal behaviours you expect staff to exhibit and the KPI’s for senior executives right through to service, support and front-line staff.
- A common understanding regarding the stages and statuses for your sales journey
It’s a great idea to align your Sales Enablement processes around your key customer persona and journey. Ideally, an audited sales journey with clearly identified deal stages, statuses and assigned win probabilities should be conducted ahead of the workshop. Presenting the results of the audit and allowing for group input is essential in the formalising of the sales journey. In the absence of an audited process the beginning step should be a hypothesis based on the collective wisdom of the workshop group.
- Identified efficiencies to be gained via Sales Enablement technology
We are now blessed with a plethora of SaaS Sales Enablement technology providers. HubSpot, SalesForce, Marketo… the list goes on. The trick is to identify the efficiencies you want to achieve in the first place, rather than trying to retrofit a provider chosen for cost reason that potentially can’t deliver the efficiency gains you are looking for. Efficiency criteria could include features such as automation, sequencing, attribution, instant messaging, parent/child reporting relationships and marketing content integration. Ranking the features is important to make the right decision. Note: Keep in mind the support that the provider offers – this is often underestimated and required for point 5 below.
- Identification of Sales Enablement content requirements
Insights, content and tools are the IP of your business. Making these available via your Sales Enablement technology puts your sales teams at a competitive advantage in the transition from being a selling organisation to a helping organisation. For each deal stage in your sales journey, content resources should be tailored and be instantly ready at hand to value add, educate and help - turning leads into customers. Understanding the role of content at each stage, whether that be the intent or the format will deliver greater efficiencies by giving the customer what they need and when they need it, ultimately speeding up your sales pipeline.
- Identification of training and behaviour change requirements
Often underestimated is the human impact! We are creatures of habit and to implement new processes requires a careful analysis of the potential roadblocks that can arise – both passive and aggressive ones! An assessment of existing skills and gaps needs to be undertaken. As part of a workshop this information should be part of a pre-read or presented in the workshop itself. From this analysis, the workshop group can focus on brainstorming the most effective ideas and initiatives to ensure an enthusiastic embracing of the new Sales Enablement processes.
Workshops are a great way to get the business to buy in as a whole. The outcomes listed above may require a series of workshops with varying groups of participants. The most important aspect about Sales Enablement is that it is a whole of business collaborative approach putting the customer at the centre. Many businesses over the years have built and implemented processes for their production and operations functions. It’s now time for Sales Enablement to have a similar impact on businesses and a workshop might just be the right starting place.