Two Questions to Determine if Sales Enablement Tools Are Increasing Productivity

Sales enablement can have a significant impact on a company. With every interaction, sales reps need to know everything about your product, service, customers, and more. By tapping into the power of sales enablement tools, reps can quickly become experts, close more deals, and Do Better Work. This blog series offers an in-depth look at enablement tools and how they can empower reps to increase productivity throughout the sales process. Let’s dive in.

Sales enablement tools and technologies can fundamentally alter your sales reps’ abilities to do their best work. The trick is figuring out which tools actually increase productivity. Here are two questions to evaluate before taking the leap into another tool.

Question 1: Who is it built for?

Are your enablement tools designed for the manager? The VP? The Director of Sales Enablement?

A great mentor and former boss of mine would always challenge me on the decisions I made about our sales activity with a simple phrase: “People, process, or tools.” During our journey as a fast-paced, high-growth company, we encountered hurdles in our sales funnel daily. As soon as we saw a challenge, we would start looking for solutions around it and the first question we asked was “Do we solve it with people, process, or tools?”

I tell this story because as we matured, I realized that the people—my sales reps—could be involved in all three aspects of the “people, process, tools” paradigm. When we built new sales processes or evaluated the sales cycle, we brought reps into the conversation. And when we decided to solve a problem with technology or tool, we invited sales reps into the meetings and demos. Spoiler alert: the results were immediately positive.

Here’s why, If you generally hire good people, sales teams are naturally productive. It’s the process and tools that will most likely slow them down. When we invited our sales reps into vendor meetings, they would instantly ask, “How’s this going to help me?” and “How much work do I have to do in your tool?” If the enablement tool was built with the sales rep in mind, it was an easy question for the seller to answer. On the other hand, if the tool was not intentionally built with the sales rep in mind the conversation spiraled out of control quickly.

So if you are thinking about investing in a tool to enable sales reps to do better work and be more productive, make sure the tool is built to assist the rep.

Question 2: Does it make “working hard” easier?

There is no better feeling than coming home and proudly reflecting on the day’s work. Hopefully you had one of those days recently. It’s that day you got in early, checked a ton of boxes on your to-do list, saw immediate results, and a whole host of other things that made you take a step back and give yourself a mental fist bump. Nice job, you.

Days like this should be easier to come across. And when it comes to your sales force, those days are when the magic happens. Sales enablement tools should make those hard-working days happen a lot more frequently.

We’ve all had the opposite of a great day too. It’s like the day your grandparents talk about where they had to walk to school uphill, both ways, in the snow, and with a younger sibling on their back. When you start to evaluate that type of day, I think you will notice a similar pattern that I did.

The unproductive days are usually filled with “I don’t know’s.” Sales requires a ton of knowledge and the best, most productive sales reps tend to have all the answers. So when you are thinking about increasing productivity through sales enablement, look for ways to decrease the Google searches, shoulder taps, and Slack polls.

With the right sales enablement tools, “working hard” should be easy and it should happen often.

When it comes to increasing sales productivity through enablement tools, you don’t need to review enough questions to fill an entire scantron with answers. Instead, ask yourself just two simple questions. Who is the tool built for and does it make “working hard” easier. With these answers, you’ll quickly determine if your tools are actually helping or hindering the performance of your sales team.

[So to wrap this up, increasing sales productivity through sales enablement tools boils down to two questions: who is the tool built for and does it make “working hard” easier? It is possible to increase productivity in your sales team. ]

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