Sales Enablement: Recruitment through Retirement

Learn how your sales enablement strategy should evolve. 

We’ve discussed the importance of having a sales enablement strategy over our last couple of posts. Specifically, we talked about how your sales enablement strategy creates a process for providing your sales force with information, content and tools to sell more effectively. It is the foundation for the customer experience with your company’s sales cycle. As sales enablement continues to evolve, we know it’s important to review your sales enablement methodologies at each stage of your sales reps’ career, recruitment through retirement.


Ongoing growth of the US economy has lead to an increasing number of sales jobs.  However according to the 2017 HireRight Benchmark Report, 62 percent of the human resource professionals surveyed reported “finding qualified job candidates” as their top business challenge. (“It’s hard to find good help these days,” right?) This is partially due to the need for sales reps to not only have successful soft and sales skills but also problem-solving and technical knowledge.

Proactively pursuing candidates can be an effective way to recruit top talent to your sales force. But data-driven analytics partnered with traditional candidate screening methodologies can assist companies in predicting a rep’s performance and organizational compatibility.


“Onboarding may be the most critical time in an employee’s experience at a company – one that has a long-lasting impact on engagement, performance and retention,” according to research from Harvard Business Review. This is spot on. We know successful onboarding programs include training on company and product information, sales resources and processes, customer acquisition markets and company tools.

We also know that out-of-the box training programs are largely unsuccessful due to their failure to address unique skills and organizational sales processes. The onboarding program ideally should be a combination of online, instructor-led and hands-on practical training to facilitate a sales rep’s success.

Early Career

As your sales reps’ career matures, it’s important to have formal mentoring and coaching programs in place for ongoing feedback and support. If you don’t, processes become too loosey goosey. We’ve seen this happen, and it basically sets the rep up to fail. Mentoring and coaching allow reps to develop competencies and proficiencies in a helpful, positive environment. A sales performance evaluation during this stage of the reps’ career can help to identify their strengths and weakness to determine what skills to focus on to maximize results

Mid Career

We know from experience that it can be difficult to continuously provide what reps need to succeed, especially if you’re a smaller business or you’re wearing too many hats. But ongoing observation, evaluation and communication with your sales reps are important even after they are seasoned. Ensuring that reps continue to have access to relevant customer data, industry reports, online content and tools is important to successful customer interactions. Periodic evaluations of your sales team, processes and systems will help to maximize effectiveness and maintain a winning sales culture.

End Stage Career

What’s interesting about this stage is the number of clients we see who drop the sales enablement ball because there’s the assumption that sales veterans already know what they’re doing. Why waste time and money? Besides, they are going to be leaving soon, right?

The truth is, using sales enablement strategies not only creates a better customer sales experience and process, it also has an added benefit of positively impacting retention. Ongoing training, periodic evaluations and sales performance reviews ensure seasoned reps remain in top form. Top sales reps are more likely to remain with a company invested and committed to their ongoing success. Veteran reps appreciate how the sales enablement strategy helps them exceed quota and close rates.

Adopting or refining your sales enablement process can improve sales performance and accelerate revenue growth. If your company’s sales are stagnant or declining, Revecent can evaluate your sales enablement lifecycle to determine where efficiencies can be made. Request a consult now and start seeing powerful results. 

Revecent experts recruit, train, equip and manage high-performance sales teams to accelerate revenue growth. Contact us today to see how we can help your organization’s sales team exceed expectations.

Five Anti-Sales Enablement Strategies

If you have been following our blog, then you know sales enablement 

has shown to be an effective strategy for revving up sales performance while increasing sales efficiency andreducing costs. Enablement is the foundation for providing sales teams with the tools and information they need to successfully engage with customers throughout the sales cycle. What happens when there is no set sales enablement process? We’ve seen that most companies default to one or more of the following strategies, resulting in at a minimum, fewer sales, an unhappy sales force and high turnover. Let’s take a look at these strategies, the ones that just don’t work.

1.  The Non-Strategy: Just Wing It

In an effort to foster a more genuine interaction between the sales rep and prospective customer, some companies encourage their sales team to “just wing it.” The idea is that instead of following a structured sales process or message, the sales rep winging it will have more natural communication with the potential client: the sales rep will be able to assess the customer’s needs, make their sales pitch and close the deal all over the course of friendly conversation. The expectation is that the free-form nature of the sales process will drive higher sales. Our findings say, “not true.” What actually occurs is an extended sales cycle, missed upsell and cross-sell opportunities and lost sales revenue. According to CSO Insights, companies in which salespeople use the company’s methodology and receive consistent coaching see 73 percent higher quota attainment. You can’t wing numbers like those.

2.  The Assumption Strategy: We Thought You Knew

In business, there is often an assumption made by the rest of the company that the sales team has received everything it needs to be successful, from marketing collateral to training. But more often than not, the sales team is the last to know about new product offerings or marketing campaigns. This can result in the end customer being more knowledgeable about a product or campaign than the salesperson. Ideally as part of your sales enablement strategy, marketing and production should provide information early in the product lifecycle so the sales team can plan and prepare for new releases.

3.  The Procrastination Strategy: There’s Always Tomorrow

In order to be successful, your sales team needs to know what they’re selling and how it benefits prospective customers. Training on product knowledge – how it compares to a competitive product, the value it delivers and target customer markets – is key to a sales enablement strategy. Often marketing or production will procrastinate getting documentation and resources to the sales team until all bugs or kinks are worked out. This results in the product going to market more quickly than the sales reps can be trained. Effective communications and training timelines need to be considered in all rollouts. Tomorrow might seem like a better day to clue the sales team in, but in reality, often there’s no time better than the present.

4.  The Content Strategy: Here. Read This.

There is no doubt that content is key to the onboarding process. Presentations, differentiators and discovery questions should all be part of content. Having content as part of training is key to making sales reps comfortable with holding complicated conversations with customers. Content plays into training and ramp-up, but it’s also a support mechanism to aid in the sales process.

The use of computer-based training and/or online content to deliver sales training information has become common. And why not? It offers companies and their sales force convenience and flexibility. The downside, however, is a lack of human interaction between the trainer and the sales reps. Roleplay and live scenarios are invaluable for allowing the sales team to ask questions and implement new skills and tactics. If the sales team doesn’t completely understand the products, services and market, customers recognize it, which can result in customers deeming the sales process (and maybe even the product) unreliable. Studies show that continuous training as part of your sales enablement process can yield 50 percent higher net sales for each employee, according to The American Society for Training and Development. The moral of the story is that while content is crucial, it’s not a cure-all. 

5.  The Nike-gone-wrong Strategy: Just Do It

After helping capture almost 25 percent of the world’s global market for athletic footwear, Nike’s “Just Do It” marketing campaign has stood the test of times since its launch in 1988. But while it’s a good marketing campaign, it’s a poor sales enablement strategy. For a sales team to be successful, members not only need clearly articulated goals that align with the company’s sales strategy, they also need to understand how they directly connect to and impact the strategy. They need to be part of the larger picture. Leaving the sales team to figure it out for themselves leads them feeling inadequate and can make them lose confidence in the company.

Now think about your organization. Are you practicing any of these non-strategies? Are you assessing whether your company has the right foundation established to empower your sales team? The professionals at Revecent can complete an analysis of your sales enablement capabilities and identify areas for improving and accelerating sales. Request a consult now and start seeing powerful results. 

HireDNA helps technology companies source, screen, and qualify sales candidates faster and smarter using data and science. Contact us today to see how we can help your organization’s sales team exceed expectations.

Empower Your Sales Team Through Sales Enablement

Sales enablement. It isn’t a new concept. The idea that businesses need to empower theirsales team by ensuring they have the right tools to lead effective conversations with customers hasbeen around for years. But sales enablement has become the latest buzz word, as companies look for ways to optimize their sales and revenue. Here’s why sales enablement really is what your sales team needs to succeed.   

What exactly is sales enablement?

Forrester defines sales enablement as “a strategic, ongoing process that equips all client-facing employees with the ability to consistently and systematically have a valuable conversation with the right set of customer stakeholders at each stage of the customer’s problem-solving life cycle to optimize the return of investment of the selling system.”  

That’s quite a mouthful. Let’s put it another way. Sales enablement empowers your sales team with resources and tools to excel. Your team uses these resources and tools to target optimal customers and close high-value sales.

Empowering your sales team through sales enablement requires focusing on four key areas:

  • corporate alignment
  • data and analysis
  • content optimization
  • technology

Get on the same page: corporate alignment

What happens when direction and focus are unclear? Typically, customers tend to fall through the cracks and/or processes fall apart entirely. That’s why companies need strategic goals and objectives communicated across all lines of business. Lead requirements, revenue goals and core objectives should be developed and implemented through all teams, including the sales team. Why? Ongoing communication and visibility create transparency and remove silos between product, marketing and sales. This empowers the sales team to have more meaningful conversations with prospective customers because they are armed with purpose and a consistent message.

Shrink the wide world of data and analysis

Companies can collect vast amounts of data and information on prospective and current customers. This can be good, but it’s crucial not to overwhelm your sales team with the irrelevant. Data should be analyzed and parsed into standardized sales reports that the sales team can actually use. Reports providing quality leads based on specific customer attributes enable the sales team to focus on clients that are of value to the business. 

Collateral counts: optimize content

According to the CSO Insights 2016 Sales Enablement Optimization Study, marketing creates only 39 percent of content used to engage with prospects. This is a problem because if marketing isn’t creating the content, who is? Often, it’s the sales team, and the result is less than desirable. As the report shares, only high-quality content (ranked “meets or exceeds expectations”) can improve quota and revenue generation so that it is above average (59.3 percent).

To optimize content, a content assessment should be completed that involves resources from product, marketing and sales. Content gaps should be addressed and redundancies removed. Additionally, to truly optimize content and empower your sales team there needs to be taxonomy and a content management framework in place to easily search and find relevant information. 

Technology talks

Enablement technology is no longer a “nice to have” but a “must have” for businesses wanting to empower their sales team. Companies can have established goals, standardized reporting and optimized content; however, if the sales team is unable to access it, then their sales efforts are impeded.

Sales enablement technologies automate processes that allow sales teams to sell better and faster. They let your sales force stay aligned with marketing and business goals, identify valuable prospects, access and search relevant content, upsell and cross-sell products and trigger automatic customer communications. Most importantly, sales enablement tools help streamline workflows and remove unnecessary tasks so the sales team can focus on creating revenue.

Maybe by now you’re assessing your organization’s ability to empower your sales team. Want to know how you’re faring? Revecent can complete an analysis of your sales enablement capabilities and identify areas for improving and accelerating sales. Request a consult now and start seeing powerful results.  

Revecent experts recruit, train, equip and manage high-performance sales teams to accelerate revenue growth. We work with technology, manufacturing and professional service organizations. Contact us today to see how we can help your organization’s sales team exceed expectations.