“Let’s talk about being a badass for sales enablement,” said Liz Pulice to a room of sales and marketing professionals this week at SiriusDecisions Summit 2018.
As vice president of global sales enablement for Turbonomic, she can more than back up the statement.
Turbonomic (@turbonomic), a Boston-based company that provides workload automation for the hybrid cloud, has added 180 new hires to its sales organization since Pulice joined in April 2017. That degree of rapid growth demanded new approaches to sales enablement and readiness as the company (literally) matured.
From startup to adolescence
“We went from a startup company to an adolescent company,” she explained. “That means the same thing for a company as it does for people. It’s a great state of growth and ambiguity. Our sellers were on a quest for knowledge, and they were looking to their peers to tell them what the definition of success is.”
Naturally, there were challenges to overcome. At the time, content and learning material were being uploaded to the company intranet by multiple groups (the “Intranet of Chaos” as Pulice described it), and subject matter experts were challenged to directly prepare the newer, larger sales force. Turbonomic was also changing its sales model, moving from inside sales to a distributed field approach.
The number of roles in need of readiness was also changing. As the business grew, Turbonomic’s sales enablement function went from supporting two groups to 11, including SDRs, sales engineers, and customer success reps. Each required its own role-based training to get up to (Turbo) speed quickly. And that doesn’t include new strategies for preparing its network of partner sellers.
Turbonomic’s sales enablement service needed to scale quickly, so Pulice and her team of two began looking for a technology solution to help.
Sales readiness for growth with Brainshark
The search for the right solution started with three must-haves:
- The ability to effectively capture ‘tribal knowledge’ in a way that was easy for everyone – from interns to executives. (“Can we easily take the content that was captured, then edit, morph and deliver it in a matter of hours?”)
- A scalable, repeatable way to share that and other information with the organization. (“Could all of our sellers access what they needed, round the clock on their time?”)
- Integration with Salesforce. (“Could we make the solution a seamless part of the system of record?”)
Brainshark fit the bill. “We needed to create easy learning packages, and no one does that like Brainshark does it,” said Pulice.
With Brainshark, Turbonomic was able to put an end to the ‘Intranet of Chaos’ by organizing all the uploaded links, videos and more and packaging them into single content assets within Salesforce. “Now [sellers] have a one-stop shop to access everything they need to know about a subject,” Pulice said, adding that these resources are used in a variety of ways, from role-based onboarding courses to communications around product releases and competitive intelligence.
The team also uses Brainshark to provide its customer-facing teams with easy access to learning paths, as well as video coaching and assessments.
The perfect pitch in 48 hours
“[Brainshark’s] coaching tool was the very first thing we used,” she explained.
It was out of necessity. Turbonomic had issued an important new pitch deck, which the team had 48 hours to prepare every sales rep to deliver.
“How do we scale coaching when we have a distributed sales team, where we’ve separated the manager from the seller?” Pulice asked. “We used Brainshark to have each rep record their version of the pitch that was appropriate for their particular business unit. With these videos, we could quickly see which reps were able to deliver the pitch, who followed all the criteria, and so on.”
The sales enablement team was also able to capture the very best submissions to share with the rest of the organization as examples of what good looked like. These peer videos have also become part of onboarding examples for new hires to view.
Ramping up to ‘Turbo’ speed
In the first nine months of using Brainshark, Turbonomic has been able to deliver multiple sales learning paths: “pre-boarding” for new hires, a formal 30-60-90 day onboarding process, and “always” boarding paths as their products and value messaging evolve.
The team can also more easily pre-certify key skills and core competencies for a variety of roles (sellers, sales engineers, etc.) for areas like objection handling, demos and more. Said Pulice, “We can know who’s prepared ahead of time, rather than having them go out in the field and test on our customers – let’s not do that!”
In a short period of time, Brainshark has become a core piece of Turbonomic’s sales enablement and overall communication strategies.
“Brainshark is a verb,” Pulice said. “Every one of our execs, product managers [and others] understand that a Brainshark is a necessary part of the programs we put out.”