About the Author

Marie Warner is founder and President of Warner Professional Sales. Warner Professional Sales helps companies achieve sales force success through people, performance and planning. Warner Professional Sales helps companies get more revenue growth from their sales force by recruiting the right sales staff, 2) training and developing those sales professionals to consistently exceed revenue goals, and helping management to define and implement the best sales "process" and tactics for sales cycle control, territory assignments and quota planning.

Marie brings to client engagements over two-decades of leadership in the sale of technology, consulting and financial products and services to the Fortune 1000 and major financial institutions. This includes nine years of experience as Chief Sales Officer, in both enterprise-level and start-up organizations.

Marie Warner has authored articles in Mass High Tech, SalesResources.com, SalesVantage.com, EyesOnSales.com, Software Sales Journal, SalesDoctors, and Women’s Business  and has been interviewed by Forbes.com on successful sales strategies and tactics. She is a member of NETSEA (New England Technology Sales Executives Association), NAWBO (National Association of Women Business Owners); The Commonwealth Institute, NAPS (National Association of Personnel Services), and Founder and Director of Boston Women ConnectSM. Marie is also a CustomerCentric Selling® Business Partner, and participates in numerous other entrepreneurial, technology and marketing organizations.

Marie Warner can be reached by email at mwarner@warnerprosales.com or phone at (617)489-4528.

Sales Enablement for the Rest of Us

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More than 70% of all US companies are investing in Sales Enablement this year, and over 50% have a dedicated Sales Enablement function.

But what exactly is Sales Enablement, and how can firms with constrained resources – like fast-growing Small/Mid-size businesses or startups - benefit from this trend?

Briefly, Sales Enablement helps your sales reps sell better and faster. Sales Enablement is providing your sales team with four key resources:

  1. Your firm’s unique, optimized sales process which mirrors the prospect’s buying timeline, as well as how that prospect evaluates and buys;
  2. Sales training and sales performance coaching to equip your sales reps to best engage your prospects;
  3. On-target sales messaging; the key here is whether the messaging is appropriate to the stage of the journey - not a “one size fits all”; and
  4. Technical tools (CRM, Sales Forecasting, Reporting) that work best for your markets and customers and which help your sellers engage your buyers throughout the sales cycle.

Uncertain how to launch your own Sales Enablement initiative?

Take a look at both your top sales wins and your toughest losses. Search for commonalities in each sales cycle for clues to both “sales best practices” as well as “areas needing improvement”. Next, validate these findings with your top sales reps.

This exercise will create a blueprint for the launch of sales enablement in your business. Here are the top areas to target for immediate impact to revenue and results:

  1. Audit your sales process to ensure that your critical milestones map to how your buyers actually buy.
  2. Boost the prospecting, sales cycle control and closing proficiency of your sales team based upon quantitative skill assessment testing (such as the industry standard OMG – Objective Management Group) sales training and coaching by experienced sales professionals.
  3. Evaluate your sales communication in collateral, website, correspondence and social media. Confirm that your sales communication delivers meaningful, value-focused messages to all your buyers, and verify that your outreach resonates with not only end users, but also influencers (who can say “no”, but not “yes”) and most importantly, the ultimate Decision Maker.
  4. Make sure your technical tools – CRM, Weekly Activity, Pipeline Reports, Forecasting - align with your unique sales process. These tools must help – not hinder – the sales representatives’ daily activities, plus offer the sales leadership critical visibility into the health of the entire sales flow – both the people and the revenue opportunities.

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