By Tibor Shanto – firstname.lastname@example.org
Every year I jot down different ideas, always with the goal of fleshing them out and building decent post. For a myriad of reasons, sometimes these ideas don’t get developed, but unlike previous years, I am resolved not to let them evaporate with time. As a result what follows are ideas I think people in sales should be thinking about, but rather than waiting to polish them up, I am putting them out their in their raw state, and set them free to grow and evolve with you. Let me know what you think, push back, evolve the ideas, let’s see where they go, or not.
Benchmarking is a good idea, but only if you are benchmarking for the sake of making progress. Set out to improve an element of your game, set a goal, measure where you are, develop an action plan, then execute. Going a step better, one can benchmark against another entity doing a similar thing, and see how you are doing vs. them in specific measures. In sports, it could be measures like goals against, team batting average, or in our favourite sport, average deal size, time to recover cost of acquisition or leads to opportunities converted. Many sales organisations are not as adventurous as others in what they choose to compare (benchmark), or who they benchmark themselves against.
So why is it that only the best choose to benchmark themselves against the best, or at the least, better than they are. While the weak and also-rans, always benchmark themselves against people “behind” them. What’s the point in measuring how well you are doing against someone who has figured out less than you, why not mark yourself, be you a rep or sales organization, against the best, or better than you. Sure you can pat yourself for being ahead of the lesser competitors, why not look forward and make gains, rather than maintaining an easy lead.
2017 The Year Of Sales Enablement
Seems the marketing cooks in Salesland are whipping up something “new” for 2017. Top on the list is rebranding, because you know what they say, if you can’t innovate, rebrand. Just like the New Improved Tied, often the only thing new is the wrapping and the hype. Just look at the recent rebranding of Key Accounts to the new look Account Based Marketing, a brilliant twist emphasising something that really isn’t there.
While traditional product marketers may test the “new” in a limited way, do consumer surveys, and the occasional focus group. In Salesland, they are more prone to doing soft launches, and when enough people jump on, they go full hog, and ride that wave till it runs out of power.
But the big thing in Salesland, percolating a while now, shaping and defining itself, but now ready to be painted over the previous Sales 2.0 veneer, is Sales Enablement. Despite efforts, Sales 2.0 didn’t plant roots, there were those who tried to keep it alive well past it’s “good through” date, but the savvy in Salesland jumped ship early and went social. So now it’s time to rebrand and try to peddle the same old with a new twist and new tweets, well at a minimum new hashtags.
For those who doubt this make over, one need only consider “The Sales Enablement Society (SES, really close to SOS)”. Their stated goal “is to better define and ultimately solve, the vast disparities that exist in sales enablement roles and functions in organizations today.” A worthwhile exercise indeed – a good start would be a definition.
But I would imagine that if sales enablement continues to be different for those who sell services, from those who sell technology applications, it will suffer the same fate as Sales 2.0 and the Sales 2.0 Alliance, remember them? Can’t wait for the line up at the Sales Enablement Echo Conference.
Salesland needs to stop following false idols and embrace the one reality in sales, success is about Execution – Everything Else Is Just Talk!
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