How Do You Improve Sales Process Adoption in the Field?


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You are in the middle of planning for next year.  You’re trying to determine how you will execute the sales strategy to make the number.  Sales process is a tactic you may want to employ.  

When done right, Sales Process moves the needle.  However, the key words here are “done right.” How do you ensure the Sales Process is executed properly? You need to ensure it is adopted. 

It takes time, money and energy implementing a new Sales Process.  But, how do you ensure adoption?  You hold someone accountable for it.  And you give the sales team the tools and coaching to be successful.  

The rest of this post will outline why Sales Enablement needs to be the one driving adoption. 

Sales Enablement is the answer to execution and adoption in the field.  Our annual Research Report has an entire section dedicated to Sales Enablement.  The report speaks to the importance of adoption and the tools needed.  Download the report now.  It’s well worth your time.

So who is accountable for sales process adoption? 

There should be very little ambiguity around this.  Adoption sits firmly on the shoulders of Sales Enablement.  You may tell yourself, “Well, sales enablement isn’t the team executing in the field every day. They can’t babysit the reps.”  This is true. 

But if the reps do not feel the sales process is going to help close more business, then the Sales Enablement team didn’t do their job.  They didn’t provide the ‘What’s in it for me (WIIFM).’  In addition to the WIIFM, Sales Enablement needs to provide the tools & content to make the sales team more effective.  This breeds adoption in the field.  This makes the sales team better at their jobs.  

Now that we know who owns the adoption.  How do they do it? 

How do you improve sales process adoption in the field? 

We talked about the WIIFM and tools & content.  An effective way to solving this problem is through Mobile Playbooks and Coaching.  

Mobile Sales Playbooks

I recently wrote about building Playbooks and you can read all about it here.  This post isn’t about building playbooks.  The fact is, sales playbooks need to be a part of sales process.  Adoption is just too important. Having playbooks is ante into the game.  The key learning here is all about mobile.  Why is mobile important?  Because of the definition of Sales Enablement: 

Right Content > Right Time > Right Person > To Progress a Sales Opportunity 

Let’s focus on the “Right Time.”  When is the right time?  It’s the “Last Mile.”  It is right before the sales call.  All too often reps aren’t prepared for the last mile.  Information and tactics taught in a classroom during the rollout are long forgotten.  This drives the need for mobile.  Sales is field based.  They visit clients and prospects at their respective locations.  Therefore, you need to serve up the tools on a mobile platform.  The sales team can then consume the information right before they have the meeting.  The content is fresh and impactful to the sales call. 

Coaching and Reinforcement in the Field

This is an important aspect to adoption.  Coaching is owned by the frontline sales management team.  And no this doesn’t contradict the above statement that Sales Enablement owns adoption.  Sales Enablement owns the approach to sales process coaching.  They own the content and tools that the management team leverages for coaching. 

Think about it like this.  The sales management team is just one vehicle for reinforcement.  They are just executing on behalf of the Sales Enablement team.  This can be done via weekly meetings and/or by riding along in the field.  Regardless of the modality, it’s a vital factor in adoption.  Coaching is tangible and personal.  Sales Enablement needs the frontline management team in order to scale. 

What now? 

Defining the right sales process is vital.  But equally important is the adoption of the process.  The best sales process can and will fail if no one is accountable.  Or if the right tools are not created and delivered to drive adoption.  It’s imperative that Sales Enablement takes ownership of adoption.  Don’t let your sales process fail.  Download our annual Research Report to help you drive adoption.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Eric Estrella
Eric Estrella serves as a Senior Consultant at Sales Benchmark Index (SBI), a professional services firm focused exclusively on sales force effectiveness. Eric brings over 15 years


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