6 Common Sales Enablement Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make

Posted by:
the Attention team
February 8, 2022

Sales enablement is an integral part of your overall sales strategy. It takes time to brainstorm, plan, roll-out, and tweak a winning sales enablement strategy, so save some valuable time by steering clear of these six frequently-made sales enablement mistakes.

1. Skipping important steps

Many sales organizations think they can get away with short-cuts when it comes to developing a sales enablement strategy. However a solid plan won’t appear out of thin air, so don’t make the common mistake of skipping important foundational steps like creating an in-depth assessment. What has your current program accomplished? Is there even one to begin with? You’re going need to know where you’re standing to orient the desired direction of your sales enablement program and establish where you’re headed. A comprehensive sales enablement assessment will need to address key questions, including: How can efficiency in the current sales process be improved? What do metrics have to say about our current approach? How can we take our sales training program to the next level? Are departments with overlapping goals like marketing and sales actively collaborating? What does your technological stack look like? Gathering the answers to these and other questions about your organization’s strengths, weaknesses, and goals make take time. But jumping this phase will only delay progress later, so save yourself the trouble and be deliberate about the way you go about crafting and later implementing your sales enablement strategy.

2. Taking an informal approach

While sales enablement can mean a lot of different things for different groups, it’s important to define the priorities of a sales enablement strategy for your particular organization early on. Without a clear and personalized vision, a real sales enablement strategy may fail to materialize, and your organization will miss out on a number of important benefits. Formalizing the process begins with establishing clear goals and assigning responsibilities to key teams or departments. If your team is struggling to reach compromise on the direction your sales enablement strategy should go in, it may be useful to designate a sales enablement practitioner to help your team make decisions on all sales enablement-related activities. Make sure sales enablement practitioners are well-briefed on the organization’s values and goals and are coordinating with sales managers to properly train sales reps.

3. Producing ineffective sales enablement content

Mistake number three is a costly one in today’s market, as having strong content is essential to a successful sales enablement strategy. There are many kinds of sales enablement content out there, but the two broad categories are external (customer-facing) and internal (sales team) content. While customer-facing content serves to answer questions and pique interest in your product or service, internal content is intended to train your sellers and equip the entire team to assist buyers at different stages in the sales process. With this in mind, it’s clear that content creation can not occur in a vacuum; decisions about sales enablement content should be made with the needs of buyers and sellers in mind. Engage with your sellers to see which kinds of sales enablement content your team finds most helpful in conversations with buyers.

4. Ignoring resources

Another common mistake is that after a ton of effort is put into making great sales enablement content, sales reps just don’t take a look at the materials available to them. This is a huge source of inefficiency that holds back sales enablement efforts. So why does this happen? Some potential reasons are that they are not aware of all of the resources they have at their disposal, or that they have a hard time accessing them in the particular moment the information becomes relevant. On the plus side, it’s 2022, and there’s never been a better time to try cutting-edge sales enablement tools. One sales enablement software you’ll have to try is Attention. Attention finds an ingenious solution to the classic challenge of retrieving specific content during live conversations. With Attention, sales reps can access sales battlecards during calls using voice-activated cues. Using technological tools can ensure easy access to important resources and push sales reps to make better use of existing sales enablement content.

5. Working alone

Creating and implementing a robust sales enablement program is not something that can be accomplished alone. Various stakeholders should be involved throughout the process, from executives needed to approve resources for the program’s development to the distinct departmental voices involved in the program’s execution. While some organizations may host all their sales enablement activities within a single department, those who operate across divisions should make cooperation a priority. A lack of unity among different departments can be detrimental to a budding sales enablement initiative. If marketing and sales are working under different assumptions and have conflicting interpretations of the end goal, you’re going to end up with a disjointed or splintered sales enablement program. Having a strategic leader to mediate between different departments will be pivotal to strengthening collaboration and achieving shared goals. This leader could come in the form of a sales enablement practitioner as mentioned in point two, or could simply be a sales manager who is willing to put in the time. Furthermore, be sure to keep the customer at the center of your sales enablement approach. Maintaining a focus on the buyer can help bind your diverse sales enablement team together during difficult moments.

6. A stale sales training program

Finally, a stale training program can get in the way of your sales enablement goals. Even with all the right tools at their disposal, sales reps that are not adequately trained will struggle to lead engaging sales conversations with buyers. Do your sales reps feel prepared to effectively explain your organization's competitive advantage or defend product quality? Is their conversation style in line with your organization's professional expectations, or could their sales communication skills use some polishing? Are sellers prepared to support buyers from start to finish? Design a sales training program that incorporates technology to enable sales reps to close more deals, with less effort. Attention measures and analyzes your sales reps’ growth throughout the training process. It not only tracks their progress, allowing sales coaches to offer their own feedback, but also provides live coaching of its own using AI technology. Try Attention to strengthen your sales enablement program today.

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