I’ve been honored to be a guest on a number of podcasts around sales enablement over 2022, so I thought that I’d share some of the repetitive questions that have come my way with the goal of helping others as they journey through their enablement trials, tribulations, and prepare for success in 2023 as practitioners!
What piece of advice would you give to a budding enabler-to-be?
First and foremost, immerse yourself in the “sales enablement” community. This will help with the inevitable growing pains, build a safe space for your ideas, create a multi-layered sounding board, and ensure that you don’t have to recreate the wheel when you’re faced with creating processes, programs, platform, tool stacks, etc. Second, find yourself a seasoned mentor that you can build a trusted relationship with so that you can have the kinds of conversations (that we all have in heads) when things get tough, feel like you’re in over your head, need to vent, or face new experiences and conversation for the first time!
What trends do you expect to see in the enablement world in the coming year?
I see a stronger focus on aligning our enablement processes, programs, platform, tool stacks, and sales motions to the buyer’s journey. The days of attempting to shoehorn prospects into a company’s selling motions are long gone! It’s time to recalibrate… there is no “new normal” but instead we’ll need to create the “Next Normal!”
- Reassess your current Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and buyer profiles.
- Articulate and Communicate your Buyer’s Journey.
- Drive more coordination between with Sales, HR, Marketing, and Sales Enablement to reassess your current Ideal Employee Profile (IEP).
- Realign your sales stages, sales methodology, selling motions, assets, and collateral to align to the buyer’s journey.
- Continually collaborate with Sales, Marketing, Product Marketing, HR, and Product Management to build updated processes, programs, platforms, and revenue-focused metrics tied to the Buyer’s Journey.
What’s been the highlight of your enablement career this past year?
I think that this past year has created a deeper sense of community and has fostered a level of support like I’ve never seen before. These interactions have created a deep level of partnerships between seasoned and new enablement practitioners that has led to relationships across all industries that has given a feeling of being in a cohort rather than being on an island where we’re all now supporting each other, even those that are working for “competitive companies.” I’ve always believed that one of the greatest things about enablement is that it’s a horizontal play across all industries, spaces, and even competitive logos. It has never been more evident than this year!
As we head into 2023, what’s been your biggest takeaway from the year just gone by?
WINTER IS COMING… so it’s time to prepare our sellers for the “Next Normal!” I’ve been in sales and sales enablement for the past 20+ years with some AMAZING companies. Like you, I’ve never experienced such a significant shift in the buyer’s and sales landscape like we’ve experiencing driven by the over the past few! Not only was it unexpected, but it happened in what seemed like overnight. Sales and Enablement Leadership can be challenging in the best of times. The challenges of navigating through the last few years, has been nothing short of overwhelming. The world has changed. Many of the things that were once considered normal, just no longer applies! Next year will beginning of the “Next Normal” across the enablement space so it will require major adjustments, changes, and iterations, that will ultimately shine a bright light on the true value of enablement.
In order to validate the value of our processes, programs, platforms, and even headcount requests, it’s time to move away from vanity metrics, or as I call them “butts in seats and smiley sheets” to working across your company’s go-to-market leaders (BDR, Sales, Technical, Customer Success/Client Services, and Strategic Partners) to craft, validate, agree upon, communicate, and iterate on a series of metrics/measurements laser focused on the following:
- Accelerating speed to revenue
- Increasing seller efficiency & proficiency
- Incorporating and harnessing all institutional and tribal knowledge from legacy sellers
- Aligning the front and back of the house of sales/customer to create a customer experience that ensures upsells, cross-sells and renewals that will lead to customers for life
- Showing the value of enablement as the drives collaboration, communication, and orchestration across all of the multiple lines of business
Welcome to the Sales Enablement 3.0 Era!
There is no back to or new normal! It’s about defining the “next” normal for your people, programs, and processes. The fundamental way that buyers evaluate, and purchase has radically shifted. This is an opportunity to re-evaluate and re-invent as well as establish new ways to communicate, collaborate and orchestrate in ways never thought imaginable with your teams, prospects, and customers.
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