Generating Quick Wins to Prove What’s Possible With Enablement
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As a business function that is new and maturing in many organizations, enablement leaders often feel pressure to prove the value of enablement right out of the gate. Enablement’s potential to drive business impact as a strategic growth lever is significant, but with many different areas that enablement can influence, it can be difficult to pinpoint the right programs to prioritize first to prove impact and generate long-term buy-in. Rather than attempting a large-scale initiative that requires significant resources at the start, enablement leaders can instead prioritize a series of smaller-scale efforts demonstrating what is possible through further investment in enablement programs.
Providing leadership and stakeholders with quick wins is a critical way to demonstrate the potential for enablement to benefit the organization. Quick wins allow for enablement professionals to swiftly prove on a small scale what can be accomplished with enablement when it is implemented at a larger scale. It also can assist in building trust and encourage buy-in from the sales team and executives, which can be helpful when proposing future initiatives.
When working to prove enablement’s possibilities, it is important to remember that quick wins are a small piece of a larger goal that can be achieved. Using these wins as a springboard to build the momentum and trust needed to prove further the possibilities is essential. To do this, sales enablement professionals can work to provide critical win results to leadership and stakeholders while aligning win opportunities with reps’ needs.
The Value of Quick Wins
Generating quick wins is important when sales enablement professionals are looking to establish a rapport and encourage buy-in from the sales team, leadership, and stakeholders. With only a short period of time to establish trust and gain buy-in, it is vital that the wins demonstrate the wide amount of support and efficiency increase enablement can provide.
“Trying to smash a home run out the gate is not a successful strategy. You could spend 18 months trying to fix something, but tidying up all these little things to get people behind you, to get them to understand what you’re there to do, will aid in getting you that buy-in for more and more challenging concepts and goals,” said Christopher Kingman, global head of digital sales enablement at TransUnion.
The value of quick wins lies in the fact that they can produce results for many different issues in a relatively short time period. While larger enablement initiatives can be used to solve a more challenging or complicated issue, getting the various quick wins can allow for a diverse set of results to be presented to the sales team, stakeholders, and leadership.
Acting fast on opportunities for enablement can give sales enablement professionals an edge with the leadership and stakeholders looking for results before investing in the sales enablement team. Generating these quick wins can be the essential piece for enablement professionals to quickly garner support for various future enablement initiatives because it demonstrates the value enablement can provide to many different areas to make things more efficient.
Aligning Quick Wins With Rep’s Needs to Build Trust
For professionals looking to generate quick wins for enablement, it is important to ensure alignment with reps. In doing this, enablement professionals can build trust while proving the effectiveness of enablement to reps, stakeholders, and leadership.
When working to align the sales enablement team’s win objectives with rep’s needs, it is important for enablement professionals to take time to see and hear directly how the sales team is currently operating and where they may have points of pain.
“When you are just building that trust and earning the trust of all different members of the sales function, it’s important to get those quick wins,” said Jenna Cronin, senior manager of sales enablement at FiscalNote. “I think actually walking in the rep’s shoes is really, really important for being able to develop some of these quick wins.”
While keeping an eye on the company-wide, high-level initiatives from leaders, which influence day-to-day operations and plans, it is critical to stay close to the frontline. Knowing what is happening at the frontline and using that information to generate wins that more effectively demonstrate the possibilities of enablement can show that the enablement team is aligned with the objectives of the sales team. Through ongoing alignment work like rep shadowing, surveys, and one-on-ones, enablement professionals can keep an ear to the ground on where the sales team can be enabled further.
“We started by listening, understanding what their needs were, where we could help, where we could have these quick wins,” said Maria Belen Eglez, sales enablement for south EMEA at MuleSoft. “We started gathering these champions, and then we also tried to understand, ‘Okay, what works for each of these teams?’
At its foundation, enablement’s purpose is to help the sales teams sell more effectively. Because enabling the sales team is the core objective, it is important for sales enablement professionals to establish a trusting relationship that is aligned with the objective of promoting more effective selling. Gathering a circle of champions from the sales team who are supportive of enablement and can provide insights into where sales can be further enabled can be crucial in creating alignment and successfully finding meaningful opportunities for wins.
Identifying the Right Quick Wins to Pursue
There are various ways enablement professionals can achieve quick wins to promote buy-in on enablement efforts. When looking for these quick win opportunities, alignment with rep’s needs is a key criterion. In addition, other characteristics make up good win opportunities that can be considered.
“Nothing can better position a new leader for success than a quick win that gets people talking,” said Leon Hassid, head of sales enablement at Hack The Box. “That could be a suggestion you provided in the context of a deal, a training you conducted about sales strategies with some of the newer reps, or a new pitch deck that you created or contributed on that was compelling. Anything that shows impact right from the get-go, you need that before suggesting changes or anything new to that for that matter.”
When working to identify opportunities that can lead to quick wins, several criteria can be considered:
- Low Risk: First, it is critical that the win opportunity is relatively low risk and has a known root cause. This is a vital consideration because the enablement team should have the authority to implement the necessary changes to improve without risking the sales team’s performance.
- Realistic Scope and Timeframe: In addition, the scope and projected timeframe of the win are important when looking at potential opportunities. A quick win should have a focused scope and be achievable within 90 days of the start date.
- Aligned With Stakeholder Priorities: Finally, the quick win opportunity should be valuable to stakeholders and leadership, which means providing measurable results that can show an added value through the achievement of the goal.
Demonstrating the value of enablement within a short amount of time means utilizing critical quick wins to gain the buy-in and establish the foundation of the sales enablement function. By identifying and gathering results from these quick wins, sales enablement professionals can prove what enablement offers while gaining trust and buy-in from the sales team, leadership, and key stakeholders.
Aligning the quick win opportunities with reps needs can assist sales enablement professionals in gaining the trust and ongoing support for future enablement initiatives from the sales team themselves. In combination, these guiding principles for generating quick wins can be vital in creating the springboard to propel enablement forward within the organization.