Docurated Podcast Episode 2: Raising the Profile of the Sales Enablement Function
In the second episode of the Docurated Podcast, we bring you part 2 of our interview with Infoblox sales enablement leader, Daniel West.
In this episode, Daniel explains how Sales Enablement leaders can raise the profile of their function within their organization and accelerate change. Click here to hear part 1 where Daniel explains how to implement your sales enablement vision.
To hear more of Daniel’s sales enablement expertise, give him a follow on twitter @DJWest75
Next, Alex asked Daniel: As an enablement leader, how do you accelerate the impact you have in the organization?
Daniel explained that “fundamentally it comes down to the way you define your vision. At the outset, I spend the first number of days or weeks doing a lot of listening, talking to other execs in and outside Sales, talking to reps, pre-sales, partners, marketing, and product marketing – really engaging as many of the folks in your stakeholder community in as short a time as possible. Asking them a fairly similar set of questions with the intent of identifying the gaps – what isn’t working today, and what are the obstacles in the way of sales productivity.”
The next step is crafting a vision that eliminates these obstacles. Then you take this vision back to the group of stakeholders and validating your strategy. You need to get the strategy and vision nailed down and communicated in an effective way to get the people on board who will help you complete your journey.
You also need to identify the low hanging fruit – the things that are critical to fix and can also be addressed in a relatively short period of time. You can address those issues fairly quickly and then go back to the stakeholders and demonstrate that you have made progress which helps you make that strategic impact and elevate the role of enablement within the organization.
Alex and Daniel also explored the best way to demonstrate ROI for an enablement initiative. Daniel explained that depending on the project, you might put together a formal business case but in other situations, it might just be presenting the c-suite with something the field has identified as a critical obstacle it might not require as much of a business case.
New hire onboarding is one area you can do a cohort analysis and look at all the reps who have joined over a period of time, examining what they have delivered as a group over a certain period of time. You can then measure this against your new rep onboarding program and see exactly what impact you are making.
The discussion finished with a look into the future of enablement. Because of the changes in buyer behavior, sales reps have to have more empathy with the buyer and they must deliver value. The value that they deliver has to be in the context of the buyer. One area where enablement must evolve is helping companies change from “inside-out to outside-in”.
Most companies are all about the company, the product and also the benefits. That has to be flipped around. The starting point is the buyer – their concerns, their environment, and what value has your company provided to similar buyers.
Adapting to the new digital world is another area enablement has to take a leadership position in. Helping sales organizations adapt to social selling and how that tool and digitization of networking can be used to understand the buyer, be where they are, and be able to deliver useful info to them.
Lastly, the enablement function will be more and more a part of a sales strategy and operations function which becomes a key partner to the head of sales or field operations and is the trusted advisor which helps decide the strategic direction and how to get to the destination as efficiently as possible.
The Docurated Sales Enablement Podcast brings together some of the leading thinkers in sales enablement today. Click below to hear some of our previous episodes:
MONEYBALL FOR SALES AND MARKETING
MARKETING CONTENT MANAGEMENT BUYER’S GUIDE
HOW TO BUILD A SALES PORTAL