6 Ways Sales Enablement Leaders can Gain Sales Management Support
Sales Enablement is generally focused on assisting individual sellers with less focus placed on others in the organization. This focus is understandable as the definition of Sales Enablement might lead people in this direction.
“Sales enablement is the strategy and processes for helping sales teams efficiently move customers through the sales process to the point where the customer can make a buying decision with a higher likelihood of buying their solution.“
Sales Enablement supports the sales team to move buyers to a decision point. While individual sellers are a primary customer, the sales managers are critical stakeholders as you seek to elevate their team’s performances.
Let that sink in for a moment.
If you create the best Sales Enablement program in the world, and no one uses it, does it help your business? As humans, we are mostly risk-averse and will not embrace change unless we have to do so. Your Sales Manager’s support will be a critical lever to incentivize the new behaviors you are trying to bring into reality.
Take the time to work with your Sales Managers in the following ways.
Sales process excellence will solidify your strategic advantage and ensure sales activities are productive.
And sales teams know this. They’ve seen these changes impact their quotas first-hand. What they don’t always know is how to compensate with updated tactics.
1. Understand their pain points
- Their bosses are raising their team quotas all the time, and they cannot understand how anyone could struggle to sell your product or solution.
- Their teams are complaining about their compensation plans, unrealistic quotas, and the fact that they need engineering to put one more feature in place so they can make that big sale they are counting on for the quarter.
- And the rest of the company doesn’t help. Not enough leads from marketing — no support from engineering – finance is pushing back on the discounts needed to sell the product.
2. Help them improve their team’s performance
- Coaching skills for sales managers
- Needs analysis
- Negotiation skills
- Demo skills
- Objection handling
- Sales technology
- Sales methodology
- Legal and Compliance issues
- As you put together this training, remember to keep in mind these seven most valuable sales training techniques:
- Be inclusive
- Create a schedule
- Train often
- Record and share
- Go small with microlearning
- Use data to stay on track
3. Get their feedback on content needs
- Where are deals slowing down or getting stuck?
- What content is needed to move deals past these sticking points?
- Where are sellers spending their time creating customized content?
- Should this content be templatized to save sellers time so they can focus on selling, not content creation?
- Is there existing content that they are using that is outdated and should be updated?
- Persona documents
- Case studies
- Sales outcome wires
- Sales scripts
- Datasheets and product documents
- Sales Battlecards
- Sales playbooks
4. Partner with managers as subject matter experts
- Do the managers want to review the training and content you develop, and at what stage of development?
- Do they want to involve specific sellers in the process?
- Every week or two, have a kick-off meeting for what you will deliver during the next period (referred to as a sprint).
- Invite your sales managers and other key stakeholders.
- Ask for their feedback to ensure you are prioritizing correctly.
- Each day, have a brief meeting, 10-15 minutes max, to ask the teams doing the work:
- What progress did you make yesterday? Is this work in a state that the stakeholders can review and provide feedback?
- Any blocking issues?
- Deliver on your efforts.
5. Get involved with deal reviews
6. Participate in coaching sessions
- Take lots of notes
- Identify gaps your team can assist in closing
- Share these notes with all participants
- Execute, close these gaps
VP of Revenue Enablement, Bigtincan
John Moore partners within Bigtincan to test and refine best practices; meets with practitioners, analysts, and thought leaders; and is focused on increasing the level of adoption of Enablement best practices, processes, and tools across the globe. Follow him on LinkedIn.
Bigtincan creates Sales Content Management Software and Sales Training and Coaching Software to enable companies to deliver Sales Enablement Solutions to their businesses.