EP 20 – Managing your Enablement Effectiveness – Jonas Taylor
Presentation of the episode
He explains his job to us and why it is essentials.
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Hi, everybody. I’m very happy to be with Jonas Taylor. Jonas, could you present yourself?
Outside of work when I’m not doing enablement you’ll probably find me dancing to live music or chilling outside with a glass of wine if I’m outside or if I’m moving, I’m a super happy camper.
Great. And could you tell us what Lattice is do?
Yes, absolutely. So everybody’s been talking about the great resignation that came with the pandemic, but not a lot of people are talking about the great transition or the great rethink, which is this idea that people want to find meaning in their work. And we’re all starting to think about work and how it fits into our lives differently versus the other way around.
So companies are now trying to build a culture around engagement, transparency, and development to retain people, which are the most important part of the business, but they need the technology to accomplish this. So lattice is an all in one platform for connecting performance management, employee engagement, company goals, and career development, all in one place.
I’m personally used lattice every day and can vouch it plays a huge role in giving me a space to share what’s on my mind with my manager, as well as think strategically about my career development.
That’s great. And what is your background before joining Lattice?
Yes. Before lattice, I was one of the first Atlanta employees at Algolia, which is a French search and discovery company where we sold an API based platform that made it really easy for developers and e-commerce teams to build and customize search on their website.
And it was probably one of the coolest pieces of technology I’ve ever worked with.
Yeah. I know, it’s a great team.
Have you ever been to the office?
No, not yet.
Oh, you should. You should go. It’s a really cool spot. But I’ll go here. They started in Paris and, you know, we were fairly well known there in the European markets. But going into the market, going to market in the U S was a challenge.
So a lot of my early career at Algolia required building out new processes, onboarding new hires and sharing best practices. It was my first crash course and enablement as a skill. However, enablement as a function is a totally different beast. We hired externally for an enablement leader. She came in and took a chance on me with no enablement experience.
But I had all of this Algolia knowledge as a foundation and we ended up building something really beautiful at Algolia where I became the north America revenue enablement manager. So we weren’t just doing yeah, it was so cool. And I’m really grateful for it. It’s cool. Cause we weren’t just doing sales, enablement revenue enablement.
We also included teams on the customer success side. So we were really supportive customer-facing teams across the entire revenue lifecycle.
Great. Now, we will address the first subject of the podcast and of the interview. It’s about enablement measurement. And could you tell us first, what is enablement effectiveness?
Absolutely. Great question. So sales enablement, collective, which is a kind of enablement think tank recently came out with a report, sharing that one in seven enablers don’t measure the impact of their training, which is wild to me, but I get it. I’ve been there in hyper-growth you’re oftentimes really short on head count.
Your tech stack isn’t fully mature. You don’t really have any defined processes for qualifying, designing or deploying enablement programs. So you’re in this triage type of state and measuring kind of distracts you from the work that you need to get done. There’s just not enough time in the day. So the short pitch on what enablement effectiveness is, is that we’re kind of like an in-house ops business partner for enablement.
Yeah. Yeah. So we’re, we’re a dedicated resource to build systems. We document process and we measure impact. A really good analogy would be that enablement effectiveness is a lot like sales effectiveness. So sales effectiveness is the sales team’s ability to convert pipeline into deals. Are we winning the at-bats that we get?
How does that impact new annual recurring revenue? Enablement effectiveness is the enablement team’s ability to convert problems or business initiatives or ask from the field into learning programs. Are we executing on these programs and quantifying impact? Did we ship the program on time? How did it impact the business?
You know, and last but not least, how do we ensure that the enablement programs we have are repeatable so that we can scale with the business.
That’s great. It was really the first time I discovered this type of job. So it was very interesting and I liked it. Could you give us some examples of what you do and an example of measurement actions you have taken?
Absolutely. So one really cool example that comes to mind would be at lattice rev ops. And I recently rolled out a tool called scratch pad, which is a…
Oh, you didn’t play the right card. So maybe you could play either metric, which you played or scratch pad, which one you want?
Oups. Let’s talk about mid pick first.
Okay. And we do scratchpad after.
That works. Yeah. So it’s one of my favorite programs I’ve ever run was one at Algolia where we ran a med pick program where ops came to us with some data around deals. And that particular sales stage. So that basically means that the longer a sales opportunity stayed in that stage, the less likely we were to close on that deal.
So hashtag time kills deals. Oh and so we built some trainings around doing better discovery at the top of funnel. I’ve done some trainings around, given get to help with negotiation and move deals through the pipeline. And so we have this training piece, we built a lot of content and collateral, so we have the content piece, but we needed a way to measure behaviors and see whether or not reps were actually applying and performing the information they learned in training, on calls with buyers and customers.
So using our conversational intelligence software, think of like a chorus or a gong, we build a scorecard initiative for managers to reinforce and score reps their discovery and given, get abilities on calls. Two quarters later, when rates by that sales stage were better. So you could say enablement helped, but what about all the other variables and things happening in the business?
Managers could have been driving better accountability, product marketing could have been building better buyer enablement content, all of these things that are happening throughout the go to market engine could hypothetically improve and impact. So our way of owning enablement impact in this scenario was looking at chorus data and looking at quarter over quarter.
Our talk time for our reps decreased on early stage calls and average questions asked per rep increased. So these are really good behavioral indicators that the discovery training stuck and to make, take it one step further we also noticed that reps with talk time ratios had higher higher rates, where the reps with better win rates. So this is a pretty solid example of measuring enablement impact. We look at those behavioral indicators to see whether or not the training stuck. And this is really one of my favorite programs that I’ve ever gotten to work on.
Yeah, that’s really great. I agree with you.
And I agree in French.
And could you also tell us about Scratch pad you started with?
Oh, absolutely. I love scratchpad. So at lattice. Rev ops which we have, we have an awesome rev ops team, and I really enjoy our partnership with them on the enablement side of things. Rev ops when I joined lattice, they were rolling out a tool called scratch pad, which is a UI overlay for reps to access and update Salesforce data from anywhere.
So the hypothesis was let’s improve op. Let’s improved data coverage for our med pick fields. And all of these things were potentially impacting our forecasting accuracy. So rev ops bought the tool before enablement did any training. So reps were using the tool for about a month before I did a live training session with the team.
And so what I did after the training was look at adoption in February, prior to my training to get a baseline. And then after the training looked at adoption rates in March to see if there was an improvement. And after the enablement training, we saw 64% month over month increase in weekly adoption.
Okay. That’s great. And I wanted to say that Salesdeck we’ll be able to do that also. Being able to update Salesforce just after the meeting with the cards that have been completed.
And I made a mistake by creating the wrong card at the wrong time. So that’s something that I have to correct. Did you finish about scratch pad? Maybe you want to show us the documents that you prepared for that?
Oh, yeah, I’m happy to. So yeah, this is actually I think a slide kind of on some of our adoptions data.So we bought the tool before enablement did any training and reps were using the tool right for about a month. So I think our contract start date was like February 1st or something like that. And before, and then once I did the live training session with the team, I looked at adoption in February. To get a baseline of what adoption rates for the tool were. And then after the training looked at adoption rates in March to see if there was an improvement. After the enablement training, we saw a 64% month over month increase in weekly adoption, which is nuts.
And this is important because the first thing you kind of need to do from an enablement point of view, if you want to make a case that enablement impacted forecasting accuracy. Well, first we have to actually prove that reps are using the tool, they’re adopting scratch pad into their daily workflow. So that was really the first piece here.
And what we ended up seeing as well is that 57% of the fields forecasting accuracy improved month over month. So to recap, our enablement intervention led to higher adoption and improved forecasting accuracy for more than one and two reps, which is really cool, but this is just one month. So we want to see what this looks like over a larger period of time, but the one thing I see enablement truly directly influencing in any go-to-market org is how often the field uses these types of tools.
And it’s our job to train them, to get the most out of the tool. You know, why have a tool in your tech stack if only 10% of the field is using it on a weekly basis? Today over 80% of the field at lattice is using scratch pad weekly, and we’re seeing better forecasting accuracy. We’re seeing better off hygiene, you know, and this is ultimately what happens when ops and enablement works together.
Ops owns the systems and the processes to make it easier for sellers to sell. And enablement comes in to train sellers on doing the right things the right way. When you kind of marry those two concepts, it’s really an ops and enablement works together. It’s really a dream come true.
Great. I agree with you and we go to the next question.
Could you always measure, measure, increase in win rates?
Oh, that’s a really good question. For me, step one for enablement maturity is to control the things that you can control. So these are going to be metrics or KPIs. So key performance indicators that enablement directly influences. These are things like NPS live sessions attendance, LMS course completion, content tooling adoption. These are all things that enablement can directly influence some control. If you’re not already measuring those things and working with managers to drive program adoption, it’s going to be really hard for enablement teams to correlate their efforts with their impact. So for me, that’s step one.
And then the other thing I’ll say is that not all enablement programs and projects require measurement. Sometimes you’re doing things to boost morale or handle, just change management in a hyper-growth org. That’s totally fine. When you have the resources, use those to measure enablement impact from heavy hitter programs like sales, methodology roll-outs, or onboarding. Onboarding is probably going to be your lowest hanging fruit.
Because your capacity model can really take a hit with ramp time and external higher performance are not predictable.
Great. Maybe we address the last subject of the interview. It’s about sales training. How do you find a theme to adress the sales training. Sorry for my English.
No, that’s a, oh, I love this question.
It’s a really good one. So when I’m finding a topic to address in sales or a CX training, there are three motions that come to mind. There’s a top down motion, a bottom up motion and then a horizontal motion. So the top down motion comes from your executive. Or your company’s priorities.
So if you’re using okay OPRs or if you have major leadership initiatives to carry out, these are scenarios where enablement will want to support that change management. And if possible, build a learning program. A bottom up motion comes from the field. So ideally this comes from your frontline managers, filtering the ask and needs of their team.
So we can work with the manager on identifying the problem that we’re solving for. So we wanna, what we want to do is when I work with the manager to identify the behaviors that we want to see happening in the field, and then enablement’s job is to build a learning program around teaching and/or reinforcing those behaviors.
But we really need manager input there because managers sit closer to their reps than we do. So. Bottom up motion ultimately comes from the field and co building with managers. And then the last motion is really my favorite one. It’s horizontal, meaning that there’s a number of cross-functional teams that enablement regularly works with. We work with product marketing, we’ll work with CX ops; rev ops.
These are all teams that might be rolling out a new product, or maybe a new process to the field. And it’s essential that they have enablement support and guidance so that we can build a super sticky learner experience. We want to basically build a program to ensure that the new process gets adopted and that sellers and or post salespeople are really comfortable around the new product knowledge necessary.
So we work really, really closely with these cross-functional teams. And then themes. Themes is a different topic. And we can talk about that another time. I like to have fun with like themes for sales training. So I’ll usually make like really bad puns. I’ll dress up as a lifeguard or a jeopardy host, and just try to have a good time. If we’re not having a good time, how do we expect the reps to have it?
Training should be fun. It should be engaging and it should solve real problems for the field. And that’s why I always start with the why. So that’s my motto: lead with the why, just try to make things 1% better, control what you can control, measure what matters and just have fun.
Great. It was really a pleasure to have this conversation with you and to test for the first time, Salesdeck as a tool to help manage a podcast.
And it’s a tool for customer meetings and customer conversation. But we use it to manage our interviews and it was really a pleasure to do that with you and to test it with you. This episode of the virtual selling podcast is over. Thanks for sticking around. Join us twice a week for a new episode, with new stories and challenges of giants in the field.
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