Preparing for the Future of Global Enablement
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In a more digitally connected world, reaching audiences across global geographies is becoming increasingly accessible, and thus increasingly critical, to businesses today. However, scaling globally today also requires agility and flexibility to anticipate and adapt to ongoing uncertainty. As organizations envision scaling globally, sales enablement can formulate a bridge for collaboration across regions to ensure reps are adequately and inclusively equipped for success.
To establish effective initiatives that will prove productive around the world, sales enablement professionals must attain knowledge of what the future of global enablement holds in order to execute initiatives that are globally scalable. Here are a few proactive measures enablement teams can take to begin preparing for the future of global enablement programs.
Accessible Content for Global Audiences
To help create synergy across regions as organizations scale globally, sales enablement teams can ensure content is accessible for a global audience. To achieve this intentionally, sales enablement professionals can invest in making the most meaningful and compelling sales content accessible to a variety of audiences through translation and localization. This not only prepares reps to engage with a global audience, but it also inclusively equips reps that are based all around the world.
In doing so, start small by identifying a few core materials that are capable of scaling internationally across language and culture barriers. Since localizing content is an investment, it is important to be critical of what content is selected to be translated. This content should be well aligned with an organization’s message, core values, and purpose, but should also be applicable to reps around the world.
For example, perhaps the content selected is prioritized by product line, sales stage, or business initiative. Similarly, consider beginning with a handful of the most common languages in the core regions where an organization does business currently or is looking to expand. By starting with a few high-priority materials first, enablement can ensure that all reps are leveraging consistent messaging, regardless of region.
“We decided to focus on seven languages and we got translations of our core materials for those seven languages,” said Caroline Fischer, director of sales support and enablement at Artsy. “But in terms of sales enablement, it was really about the minimum amount of materials that would scale globally with the right message.”
Inclusive Training Programs
The future of global enablement also includes creating and implementing more inclusive training programs for reps. To do this, sales enablement professionals must ensure training programs are designed with respect for the diversity of global sellers, as well as encourage training feedback after program completion to continuously refine content based on region.
While it might not be possible to travel to each global region and deliver in-person sessions or realistic to deliver every program in just one language, there are some strategies enablement can implement to deliver training that is applicable across different geographies. For example, sales enablement professionals can utilize translated transcripts, closed captioning, or voiceovers for virtual sessions. This creates a more inclusive foundation for sellers and helps to mitigate communication difficulties due to language barriers.
“The pandemic provided us with an opportunity and that opportunity is that we have now exclusively Zoom-enabled sessions,” said Kate Philpot, senior director of global sales enablement at Getty Images. “Because we have enabled sessions, we also now have a live transcript and not only just the transcript during the session, but we have a transcript on the side of the recording that can be translated into multiple languages.”
Encouraging and creating an environment for training program feedback is necessary for all coaching and training endeavors. However, it is even more imperative when designing programs across multiple regions to ensure inclusivity.
By using surveys, worksheets, or post-session interviews with reps in different geographies that invite transparent observations or ideas, sales enablement professionals can gauge how global sellers feel about their training and how it could be improved without judgment or criticism. To invite this transparency, enablement needs to establish trust by demonstrating to global sellers that their feedback will be heard and applied to future programs. This allows for a mutually beneficial partnership to flourish between sales enablement professionals and global sellers.
“The way that they speak about sales enablement just has this trickle-down effect to sellers and it generates excitement for them,” said Fischer, “They want to come to more of the training, they want to see the materials that we create, and they also feel comfortable in giving the feedback of what would have been more helpful for them or what they would like to see next time. That mutual partnership is necessary – it’s so key.”
Alignment on Global Enablement Objectives
Creating and delivering a singular message at a global level is necessary to solidify global enablement success. It is crucial for sales enablement professionals to craft this message in alignment with leadership and business goals and objectives so it is clear, comprehensive, and based on organizational values.
By liaising with leaders across the organization in the development of this message to ensure their goals are reflected, as well as securing their buy-in on how this message is cascaded through enablement programs, enablement can establish the cross-functional alignment needed to drive the success of global programs. In generating this alignment, a global message can be materialized and then broadcasted in an intentional way.
“All the programs that we develop must be aligned around that strategy, but we also need to ensure there is cross-functional alignment,” said Anthony Tripyear, director of global sales operations and enablement at StarTech.com. “We play the key role in that, properly ensuring that all the different functions are aligned before we’ve even really designed or deployed any programs.”
Through the recognition and preparation of the future of enablement, sales enablement professionals can better understand how to develop a relationship with a global audience as well as better plan their global scaling initiatives. By implementing practices to make content more accessible, develop inclusive training, and execute against aligned objectives, sales enablement professionals can set reps up for success as the organization scales and expands globally.