Sales Enablement PRO Awards 2021: Scaling Sales Success at Zoom

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Congratulations to Sales Enablement PRO Award winners from Zoom. Learn more about the Sales Enablement Team award recognition below.

What was the challenge you were facing?

Michelle Dotson: I’m Michelle Dotson. I run our global enablement at Zoom. I am not your natural enablement leader so this is very exciting for me and for the team because I tend to think of myself as a newbie to the practice. I come from sales and sales operations, and I love helping people learn and preparing them to do their jobs. So that is what I’m all about. I started a week before COVID so I joined Zoom knowing that enablement for them was a little bit different. Zoom was not a household name yet. Zoom was very much an in-person office environment. And so I joined and then the global pandemic happened and everything went virtual in a week.

So, what they were predominantly used to before was kind of thinking of enablement as I need help here, I need a deck, this person didn’t do something correctly. So it was a very reactive enablement culture. So with COVID and with me joining, let’s just say the two came together. We had to build a strategy and we had to move fast and everything was virtual and everything had to be done at scale. So, we went from being like an order taker of, “I need this and more of this is a priority.” This is part of the strategy and we need to communicate really well over the last year. So, I think focusing more on strategy, communication, being able to understand what our teams need and how to deliver it really well virtually. We started and I have this amazing team and we had to figure out how to do onboarding in four days, a hundred percent virtual and they pulled it off. They did an amazing job. Every month after that we just had to keep figuring out how to deliver what we’re doing better and we have a little bit different pressure on us, right? Some businesses are struggling, some businesses are also trying to figure this out at the same time. People were asking Zoom how are you doing it while we were figuring it out. So, the shift was really sudden, the shift had no plan.

What was the process of shifting your strategy?

MD: I hope we won this award not because we knew what we were doing. I think the effort came in, everyone just banding together, unifying, understanding that we had a huge, critical shift and aligning on the best way to get it done, which meant the first mark, it was rough, it was ugly. And then it just kept getting better. Overnight, everything changed for us. We broke every process and tool and system and almost everyone, right? Like we were barely hanging on and the need that we needed to just enable and move and scale so quickly. So, what that means is that people were looking to us internally to tell them what tool do we need? What process do we need? How do we make this better? How do we roll this out? It wasn’t hard to get people on board, it’s almost like we became a little bit of a lighthouse. Like, look at us. We will help you. We’ve created some clarity. We’ve created a process, come with us, it’s safe here. We will get to the point we need to get to.

So, that’s kind of how we managed our own internal change enablement. A little bit was providing people just the necessary tools and the strategy, and showing them that we were trying to help them. So it went over really well is what I would say. We really focused on three things. We focused on onboarding. So Zoom onboarded a lot of people in the last year. We made a major shift and focused on really improving the experience for our new Zoomies. And also there was a focus on relearning. So while you create all this new content for your new people, you should also be then sharing it out with the people who’ve been here the longest. So we did a lot of refresh training, a lot of relearning. If we updated a module, if we updated a training, it was available for everybody. We should all benefit from the changes and the focus that we had on the new people.

What are some of the business results and impact as a result of your efforts?

MD: We also then tried to get a little bit more deep in knowledge in providing more technical expertise and training. Zoom had a huge focus on security. And we wanted to make sure everybody felt comfortable. What does getting technical mean and what is encryption? What is cloud security? These were all new topics for a lot of our sellers and we had to make sure they were technically proficient in extremely complicated things. And so it was new people, relearning and deep learning and getting pretty technical where our main three focuses for the year. So we had a lot of metrics that we used. How do we gauge enablement is working? How do we gauge programs are working? I think what I’ve seen fundamentally is a shift in our culture where learning is becoming a priority and training is not this mandated big, ugly, dark cloud over your head. It is part of knowing how to do your position and be a trusted advisor in our space.

We truly made a shift in the culture and you see that in the number of people who are engaging and attending sessions and truly adopting what enablement is doing. We also see things like the shift in how people are messaging Zoom, how our deals are expanding, how overnight people only know us as Zoom meetings, but we have phones and we have rooms, Zoom rooms, and we have chat and webinars. And how do you incorporate all these amazing things that we have that people might not know about us today? So we see deals expanding and we see reps learning new things. Phone in itself is extremely calm, it’s like a language learning a whole new language and it can be intimidating. But when I see reps who might come from different industries start to get it and piece it together then you know the training that you’re doing is working.

I think it’s really just attendance, engagement, adoption. And just almost being, they’re very vocal. Our Zoom sellers are, we’re connected. We have great relationships with managers, with sellers and they give us feedback and we get the thank you. We get the “this helped me, this prepared me for a deal.” So we’re seeing that people are using what we’re building and they’re using it in their day-to-day and it’s impacting their lives. So that’s kind of how I would say it’s helped.

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