During the week of Dreamforce ‘15, Brainshark hosted a sales readiness panel at the InsideView Open Lounge. During the session, four sales experts offered insight and ideas on the problem of sales readiness: what companies need to do to prepare their reps to have the types of consistent, valuable sales conversations that move deals forward.
The last question of the panel asked each of the panelists: “What does the future look like as it relates to sales readiness?” Here’s what they had to say:
Joe Gustafson, Gounder & Chairman, Brainshark
“It’s about data. 40 or 50 years ago this guy on Madison Avenue, David Ogilvy, said “I know half my advertising budget is wasted, I just don’t know which half.” Marketing has come a long way with marketing automation; we track and know everything. But as soon as it gets handed off to the sales guy, it’s a black hole. And I think that… whether it’s sales conversations or emails or all kinds of other things that we can analyze… 3-5 years from now, sales is going to be VERY data driven. And if you’re not ready to mine that data and use it, you’re going to be behind the curve.”
Sharon Little, Research Director, Sales Enablement Strategies, SiriusDecisions
“Often times when I’m talking to companies about their sales enablement program, I get this vision of military jets refueling in flight. That’s truly what it’s like in [sales] enablement. Using that analogy and taking it down the road, I think the real potential for sales enablement is an environment where within our organizations we have the ability to shift ahead of the curve in terms of conversations that sales people are having and the way they’re interacting for the business, while still making quota quarter after quarter.
That’s potentially the promise of this: we can still hit our numbers; we don’t have to hit a dip… we know how to reliably and predictably fine tune and adjust the machine so it continues to produce the way that we expect it to.”
Trish Bertuzzi, President & Chief Strategist, The Bridge Group, Inc.
“Sales enablement… or sales readiness… needs to take a bit of a shift. In so many of my clients I see the person in charge of that has come from the training organization or the success organization or the marketing organization. If you haven’t carried a bag, how are you going to ready the sales organization? You don’t even know what their job is like… You need to put the person who has carried the bag [in charge]… They don’t even have to make their quota all the time, but they need to understand your buyer and their challenges and their realities. THAT’S the person that needs to lead this organization now. And that’s going to make a huge difference as we move forward.”
Walter Rogers, CEO, CloudCoaching International
“I hope there’s an awareness at some point in the future that success is really 80% psychology and 20% mechanics. And at some point hopefully sales enablement, sales readiness, coaching etcetera will come to realize that if I can help my rep have better control of his or her psychology… ’If I think I’m gonna win, I’m gonna win. If I think I’m gonna lose, I’m gonna lose. I don’t care how ready you make me’… It’s that awareness that I hope begins to infiltrate sales readiness.”
For more insights and ideas, get your free copy of 22 Tips for Better Sales Readiness.