Ep22 Operating Model Clarity to Elevate the Strategic Impact of SE with Sandra

Ep22 Operating Model Clarity to Elevate the Strategic Impact of SE with Sandra

Welcome to the Inside Sales Enablement Podcast, Episode 22

What happens when you go through a major organizational change and need to redefine your sales enablement operating model, vision, mission? During times of change, how do you frame out your sales enablement “moon shots” in order to engage strategically and tactically to overcome the internal complexity that bogs sellers down?

On this podcast, Brian and Scott talk to Sandra about her stakeholders within the business how she might re-frame the relationships she has in her company in order to get closer to the business while also elevating her role to a strategic function. 

Topics on this podcast include:

  • Sales Enablement operating model
  • Stakeholder management
  • Defining your sales enablement domain / sandbox
  • Communicating with clarity
  • Breaking through internal perceptions
  • Focusing on what matters to sellers and sales managers 

Key questions the guys talk through with Sandra include:

– How do you evolve from a department of tactical projects to a strategic function?

– What relationships does she leverage to gain more influence?

– How might she define and clarify her sales enablement operating model

– How do you become a truly cross-functional role to support sales team conversations?

– How do you devote attention to building a team that propels sales effectiveness forward

Join us at https://www.OrchestrateSales.com/podcast/ to collaborate with peers, join Insider Nation, participate in the conversation and be part of the continued elevation of the profession.

Nick Merinkers 00:02

Welcome to the inside sales enablement podcast. Where has the profession been? Where is it now? And where is it heading? What does it mean to you, your company, other functions? The market? Find out here. Join the founding father of the sales enablement profession Scott Santucci and Trailblazer Brian Lambert as they take you behind the scenes of the birth of an industry, the inside sales enablement podcast starts now.

Scott Santucci 00:33

I’m Scott Santucci.

Brian Lambert 00:35

Brian Lambert and we are the sales enablement insiders. Our podcast is for sales enablement, leaders looking to elevate their function, expand their sphere of influence, and increase the span of control within their companies.

Scott Santucci 00:48

Together, Brian and I have worked on over 100 different kinds of sales enablement, issues as analysts, consultants, or practitioners. We’ve learned the hard way what works and maybe most importantly, what doesn’t.

Brian Lambert 00:59

That’s right. Our podcast is a bit different. We use a conversational format to help share the experiences that only people who’ve been there and done that can provide, as we’ve been pushing the envelope in the profession for over a decade. And today, Scott, we’ve got a very special guest. We’ve got Sandra, from a large company, who’s joining us in response to our podcasts. And as you know, we talked about in Episode 20, that conversation on the Securities Exchange Exchange Act and how CEOs look at sales enablement, and we outlined the strategic definition of sales enablement that we published in 2010. And in response to that, podcast, Sandra reached out and wanted to talk to us about some of the things that we were sharing. And so here she is, she’s gonna put us on the spot.

Scott Santucci 01:47

That’s excellent. And I’m really looking forward to that. I’m Look, I love as you know, I love getting challenged. And I also think that that’s the best way for us to advance advance the role by challenging each other and and pushing ourselves but I love. I love the distinction about making making insiders. So good job on putting that together Brian.

Brian Lambert 02:08

Yeah, absolutely. And by the time she’s done here, she’ll be an official member of insider nation. So that’ll be awesome. I did want to say also, um, you know, welcome Sandra to the show, appreciate you joining.

Sandra 02:23

Thank You.

Brian Lambert 02:24

Absolutely, and uhm when you and I were talking you brought up a lot of great points in our conversation and you shared a personal story in relation to understanding sales enablement, how to define the roll, and also you know when you’re engaging inside your company sometimes it’s hard to pivot to be something else to be more strategic. Can you share a little bit more about that and what you liked about episode 20?

Sandra 02:49

Absolutely, and thanks for having me on. I’m definitely getting a lot out of these podcasts and I hope others are as well. It sounds like oh, in order to become an official inside I have to explain what I liked about an episode.

Brian Lambert 03:02

That’s right.

Sandra 03:04

So here goes, here’s what I liked about Episode 20. And it did really resonate with me. You know, it’s focused on grounding, any sales enablement function and a solid and consistent definition. And clarity helps everyone, and I love clarity. So that really resonated with me. And I like this idea of strategically consulting business problems. That really resonated with me as well. Instead of becoming tactical in nature, you want to solve the big problem and be more strategic. So, when I listened to that I reached out to brand because I started out that way. When I joined my company two years ago, you know, I started out very strategic, you know, I solve some big enablement problems that had been plaguing this company for years. It was very exciting, a lot of good change, and it created some consistency and clarity across the entire network. I did some things that actually changed the culture of the bank, but over time, i got caught up in being a door and a go to person for activities and less around strategy. And I wish I had stuck with that definition or had a definition that I could have stuck with that may have helped me get out of sort of this tactical space that I’m finding myself in. That said, I’m thinking about moving into another role at a different company, because it may be too late for me to get back into sort of that strategic space. So really, the main goal of me joining today is, you know, I want to find a way to engage with my company differently and redefine my role get back to that strategic space. Even though the ship may have sailed on that, you know, I’m a fighter, I want to go down swinging before I move on, and that way I’ve know I’ve tried everything before I move to another company. And in this conversation today, I think I can learn a lot from you on how to engage differently so that can help me in any future role.

Brian Lambert 04:58

Well, that’s awesome. So, we’ve changed your name. So, you’re not really Sandra. But that’s the name we’re using. And there’s a lot of transparency there, right, you’re in a bit of a change in position flux there. And I really, really appreciate you put yourself out there on the podcast to not only learn but to help others. I love that, that comment you made about helping others. And I know from my own background, that there are other people in this position that you’re in. And it’s really cool to see that you’ve come on. So, Scott, you know, we’re in another one of our reality podcasts. So, you know, I’d love for you to jump in and share a little bit how this will work. And then you guys can get off and running. And I’ll take, I’ll take some notes.

Scott Santucci 05:43

Excellent. So, the way that this works is it’s sort of like speed day consulting. What we’re going to do is we’re going to lead with some, some principles. So, let’s talk about where Sandra and almost said the real name there. Where Sandra’s situation is actually very, very common. So first of all, it’s very, very common for somebody to run into the situation of where they thought they were being strategic, and now their environment not being strategic and wondering how is it them or what what’s happening? So, on that point, what I like to share is in 1969, is what 50 years ago, right 5050 years ago this year, we actually put human beings put other human beings on the moon, and then we brought them back again. I mean, by all accounts is the most amazing achievement, right? What I think we don’t recognize is that in 1972, we stopped doing it because Americans got bored. We got bored with putting people on the moon.

Brian Lambert 06:56

Yeah, we’re done with that let’s try something else.

Scott Santucci 06:59

Yeah. What are the Yankees gonna do this week? So, it’s just really remarkable that when we go and do something amazing, and then we, you know, we have a culture of taking it for granted. So, the first thing is just because you’ve gotten to that point, Sandra doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s, it’s with you. It’s, it’s, it’s the fact that we have to resell that next, that next lunar mission. The other thing that I think is very common is if Brian and I have sort of a shorthand to think about the evolution of the role, we tend to believe that people go overboard on maturity models and make them too specific. We just want to provide some trajectory. So, what we see is that the evolution of the role if you can get in your mind’s eye if you’re driving to work right now, and and kind of can picture that evolution chart that I think we’ve all seen, that starts with monkeys and then then we get the caveman. And then we get the modern man that sort of picture. And think about evolution, one, sales enablement, people start out by being tapped on the shoulder to fix broken things, those broken things might be a fix our onboarding program or fix our fix our training program or whatever. Then what happens is the one of the departments that evolve actually start taking on many of those things. So, we’ll take on the, you know, maybe be responsible for the sales training, the sales kickoff, and then maybe some frontline sales coaching or different things like that. And it becomes it becomes a department. And by getting coordination among those three parts, you get economies of scale. And then the third level of evolution is, hey, we need to start doing these things outside functions like we need to be coordinating between finance and sales. It’d be coordinating between human resources and sales and marketing and sales, and at that stage that, you know that highest level of evolution, the function is is very different. And each one of those three areas, it’s very different. The reason I share that as a frame of reference, just hearing Sandra talk it, it really triggered those two things. So one is, I’d want to remind her and then we’re going to talk a little bit about creating more fanfare and getting buy in and what it takes to do a lunar lunar type approach. And then the second thing would be, how can we use the maturity models as a way to think about what are other areas to tackle. So those are the things that if you’re listening along what we’re going to be following on and these are very, very common situations. And I’ll say this last point. Before we get into the speed date part, the last point is, most people who’ve elevated their roles, leave their organizations, and go pursue a different company. And I’m going to talk about pros and cons with doing that on this call as well. So as that as a transition point, Sandra, how do you react to sort of the high-level observations I shared? And then I’m going to ask you a bunch of questions about where you are right now.

Sandra 10:23

Scott, it resonated really well. And I think what you said about space before, I mean, that’s where I’m stuck in stage two, I want to find a way to get to stage three at my current company without having to leave and go somewhere else. You know, I built some strong connections where I am now, I’d really like to leverage all that I build to get into that stage three, without having to make a leap. But if that’s what I need to do, given your advice today, then then that’s what I’ll do.

Scott Santucci 10:56

Well, no pressure on me on that one, huh? Right. Right. So, um, so let’s talk about, uh, you know, stage to describe for me, what was the situation you inherited inside your existing company. And then you know what you’ve built up right now as sort of give me a from what to where you are right now.

Sandra 11:19

So, when I joined the company, there wasn’t really a sales enablement function. So, I was brought in to create a sales enablement function. So before I built out a team, what I did is I met with all the stakeholders to identify what priorities they had, like what they thought we needed to do to best enable sales, I did a survey and we level set on four priorities because one of the things I realized is everybody had a different perspective on what success would look like and I was gonna make nobody happy without aligning to these, you know, sort of four common things that we needed to do and it was really around sales process, sales coaching, tools and resources and sort of this connection into the CRM. So, I set those priorities forward and then I i aligned with and I built a team of research trainers and I partnered with an outside vendor around the the enabling the coaching and the process. And then we did some real heavy communications. And we built sort of this cross functional team that also sort of started to manage, you know, the intake and triage of things that were coming into the organization because that was another challenge they had, which was they needed an air traffic controller person, because so much was hitting the front line and there was distraction there and we needed to focus on a consistent process. So, all of that was built out and we branded it internally and it’s just part of the culture now in terms of process and how we have conversations, how we coach and our sales management practices. So that’s sort of out there now and there’s not sort of this next, ask around what the strategic priorities are. So, I’m left sort of executing on those things while I get requests for, you know, sales, kickoffs, and meetings and, you know, meeting cadence. So, there’s just, yeah, it’s just that the next big thing is coming my way. So how do I sort of get to that level three and and sort of get the next big assignment?

Scott Santucci 13:29

Right. Tell me more about this, the stakeholders that you currently worked with, and what their points of view where and the reason I’m asking this is twofold. One is, I’m trying to determine what departments are the stakeholders are who is it that you’re working with? Maybe what wallets so sources? What budgets are you working with? Who might your internal customers be? And then also, I’m doing that because we Brian, and I’ve been really harping on a lot on the importance of stakeholder management. Who who are those stakeholders? Like what what are their roles?

Sandra 14:05

So, you know, the primary one is the head of the business. And you know, I have a really strong relationship with that individual. I’ve worked with him at a previous company. So, you know, fully engaged with him, also work very closely with our HR team. And you know, because they’re the sort of the people, folks and there was some training involved in this. So, I really feel like I was at a solid level from an HR perspective, not so much the head of HR, but the business partner for that executive. You know, I worked with the head of marketing, I worked with the head of customer experience, because customer experience feeds what we train our folks on. And then, interestingly, somehow, I ended up with a really good relationship with a head of finance and in any role I’ve ever been in, you need the head of HR and the head of finance, right? You need those two things. If you’re going to enable a sales team, and and nobody believed I could get the funding I got for the project. You know, I came in with a zero budget and was able to navigate, you know, a significant budget of people and expense in order to partner with an external vendor to bring in the right level of training. And somehow, I got the finance guy to trust me and and I don’t know if it was my background or engaged the right stakeholders, but I was able to get a significant budget to execute on what I just talked about.

Scott Santucci 15:38


Brian Lambert 15:39

Can I chime in real quick? So, one of the things Sandra that you had shared and there’s a timing thing around this that has to do it’s a bit of an organizational shift. These these stakeholder relationships, were these when you first initially started and then you either went through a merger in order to change and did those those relationships stay intact?

Sandra 16:03

So, the head of the business has stayed intact, which is great for me, there’s been some shift on the HR side, the finance side is unknown. The person I built the relationship with is still there, but we’re still sort of navigating org structures. So, to your point, there’s quite a bit of uncertainty across the organization right now and and we all know that, you know, those stakeholder relationships are really important. You go through a merger, nobody knows what’s going on. So, you know, you’re on rocky ground for a while until there’s some clarity.

Scott Santucci 16:39

So, I’m glad you shared that. I’m a strong advocate. I repeat, I’m a broken record about you have a friend and finance so the difficulty is very few people in our in our profession, Sandra, actually build those relationships with the head of Finance. Describe for me the situation to where you’re in now. You mentioned earlier on that you’re spending most of your time caring feeding the things that you’ve already built. Is that right?

Sandra 17:08

Right. That’s exactly it. And with the mer, and part of it is this merger, because there’s not an appetite for new and exciting, there’s an appetite for alignment, right? So, there’s going to be system conversions. And we’re going to have to enable team members as we convert systems. So that’s really just sort of core system training, right? There’s nothing new or transformational in that although it will transform the organization from a sales enablement perspective. It’s really seen as you know, the the system’s conversions are becoming our businesses usual stuff, and there’s really not an opportunity to expand so I’m sort of stagnant right now. And I don’t know what the other end of this if I’ll sort of stay in this place and how I can get into that strategic space.

Scott Santucci 17:57

Got it. So, I think that we have two areas to talk about. So, area number one would be what are the new moonshots, you could think about tackling. Mm hmm. And then area number two, how do you build an operating model so that you can have you can hire other people to do a lot of the caring feeding. So, I think I think they go hand in hand, and this is where maturity levels really kick in. And this is where what what separates folks like you who are strategic, involve lots of stakeholders, creative problem solvers, things like that. can run can overrun their supply chain of of people who can actually work like you, you can, and they get pulled into doing a lot of the care and feeding work, because maybe they haven’t figured out the right operating model the scale what they’ve done. So, there’s there’s that that could be a limiting factor, right? How do we scale you? Yes. The second thing would be, where are their new patches? Because if everybody thinks the problem solved just through training and having a better CRM system, oh, well, it’s just sort of the tip of the iceberg. So, let’s talk about both of those things. Let’s call topic number one, which is how do we scale you? Let’s call that the operating model. And Brian, and I like to refer to that as, you know, what’s the business within a business? And then we’ll get into once we understand what, what infrastructure for lack of a better word, you’ve got to scale your scale your function, then we can get at, given what we know about your ability to scale you. Let’s talk about then what are new things that we can tackle? Okay, Okay, sounds good. So, let’s talk about let’s talk about about scaling, and one of the challenges that I see often is when people get to level two, and they have that situation where they think they’re doing most of the care and feeding, my gut tells me it’s less about the culture around them and it’s more around whether or not they’re building a department that can that doesn’t just do tasks and says, Sandra, tell me what to do. You’re like, well, I didn’t tell you what to do. I thought I was very clear. No, you need to make it more clear. You have a lot of people telling you to make it more clear. And then you get frustrated and say, oh, screw it, I’ll just go do it myself. Are you in a situation that’s close to two like that?

Sandra 20:43

Or I’ll do it with you. So, I’m sort of still trying to teach folks to fish a little so because I do have a small team and as the as for clarity, I will partner with them instead of just having them do it themselves. So yeah. I could say I’m there.

Scott Santucci 21:01

Yeah. So that’s, by the way, that’s a very common situation. And what’s happened is that most people around you. And actually, this is a, this is a true problem with any cross functional role. So, it’s not just limited to sales enablement, but any true cross functional role. Most people have been conditioned to think that my job is x, the deliverables that produces y, just tell me how you want me to get it done, and I’ll go do it. It seems to me though, that the problems that you’re addressing are cross functional, and you’re trying to solve business process type problems, which requires people to work more, be more creative, be more innovative and work together more collaboratively. Is that is that fair? Is that a true fair assessment?

Sandra 21:52

That’s a fair assessment. Yes.

Scott Santucci 21:54

So, what we have to do is we have to learn as sales enablement professionals in order to build the muscle so that we can tackle more of the strategic issues in order to get to level three, we have to devote our attention on how do we build out a team that can help propel us forward. And, you know, going back to this the, the Apollo mission example, the Apollo mission example is, people spent a lot of time and energy just figuring out how to leave the atmosphere. Like there’s that thing of a rocket scientist. And that was actually a really big problem. Most people didn’t believe that you could create enough velocity for a rocket to exit the atmosphere because the fuel you know, there was a tight relationship between fuel and exit velocity and the more fuel meant the heavier and you could never do it. So, they had to figure that out first. So, it seems like you figured out the exit velocity now we have a different problem, which would be okay, now how do we stick how do we define what an orbit orbit looks like are other other challenges? It seems to me like one of the challenges that we need to address would be how do we how do we build a operating? And this is where Brian and I like to talk about a business with a business, because it helps the leaders like you envision Hmm, how do I help my team envision working together as a team? Because it’s just an uncomfortable thing. Most most people in business don’t get trained on how to work as a team. And it just seems to me, you are very team and collaborative oriented. And it’s, you know, probably, you can’t scale teaching people by doing it with them. And I don’t know about you my experiences. Sometimes people resent that again, just let me do it myself. Mm hmm. And so, I’m curious about how, if that’s a problem for you How would you anticipate addressing that, in either scenario, whether you attract more or go to a different job? Because the issue is the bigger the problems, the more scale you have to make for yourself. How do we do that? I mean, I guess I just want to get, you know, get some of your thoughts on it.

Sandra 24:21

Well, you know, so I probably would need to, like you said, reinvent the team and define not only what sales enablement, you know, the definition but the functions within a sales enablement function and what we do and then, you know, begin to socialize that new sort of offer to the various stakeholders and get back to sort of what are these bigger business problems we’re trying to challenge we’re trying to address.

Scott Santucci 24:54

I love it. I love it. I think that’s spot on. That is the conclusion that but pretty much every person I’ve talked to that’s that’s gone from level two to level three is as come to, I have to reinvent how I organize my department and what it is. And that’s really where the business within a business model comes in. So, within business, you’re already doing this, right. So, you have focused on your investors, a business, all businesses, investors, right. So, you went right to the investors to begin with? Yes. And you said, Hey, here’s a chunk of problems. And you were able to go get the funding to tackle it because you had a business conversation. You didn’t have a funding request conversation. So, you already thinking that way. So now the issue is like any business that’s got a, it’s got investors, you need to keep producing those results and your operations your operating group is not producing the is not operating as efficiently as it could. So you are, you are spending more time working in the business rather than on the business. Right? Like how to how to evolve your, your business with our business. So, part of what you could do is say, okay, like other businesses, we need to have a sales, a sales function, aka account managers, that could be the folks doing the stakeholder management, because you and I both know, you have a lot a lot of people who at any point in time can get frustrated, and then you’re spending time putting out fires rather than growing, you’re being reactive state. So maybe you find your best person who can manage those. Maybe you find another person who’s really operationally efficient that runs the factory, you know, defines the factory. Maybe you find somebody else that you know, sort of manages the finances and and you frame those roles out. That way. And what you concentrate on is defining, you know, different services like what products do you offer. So, one of the things that I’m sure you’d want to be doing is to provide consulting services to say, the business unit leader and the CFO, like, here’s, here’s the investments we’re making, here’s the results that we’re making, etc. In order to do that, you need to have the skills to be able to do it and get on there. And get on those business unit and the CFOs cadence so that you can deliver those reports. And by the way, by you delivering those reports, you get more opportunities to grow what you’re doing. You just need to design it. Yep. Then the second thing then would be there’s going to be people are really great at doing care and feeding and there’s a lot of people really happy to do care and feeding. So, what we’d have to do is no, I’ve learned the hard way. There are certain people that I sort of want to bring everybody together, but there are certain people who just want to be a trainer. There’s nothing wrong with that. We just have to create an environment where they can scale number and they are adaptive to our business requirements. So, we’d have to have a quality control role. And then people need to realize that we’re in service of everybody else. It’s not about you as individuals. So how do we build our own culture for our team? So, there are some simple things, I think, that I’m not saying they’re easy I’m just saying there’s simple, big difference. You and I both know simple as hard. There’s some simple things that you could probably do to start thinking about how to get more scale, because I don’t know whether you can take on more now if most of your time is spending doing the care and feeding. So, we have to free up more Salinger time in order to take on more things. So, I think that one of the things that we need to concentrate on would be how do you build out your operating model and get some scale there.

Sandra 28:57

Love it. It totally resonate. And where you have me thinking differently is in that consulting services space and really looking at myself as a consultant to sort of those senior stakeholders, and, you know, really getting back in their offices on more of a regular basis with some data that supports the work we’ve done and sort of vision around future.

Scott Santucci 29:24

So that’s awesome. I love that you’re there because I was going to go to next, the next topic would be what are moonshots? Okay. If you and I could relate to each other, like your business went out of business. And let’s say that there are four business lines you could be offering. And the way that I like to think about this is I like to think of that. sales enablement really is most valuable when it simplifies things, right. It removes complexity, not produces more stuff. So, the services that we provide are business processes and I have four high level business processes in my head. Right?

Sandra 30:05

I love that you’re going to take me through four things that can be my offer, right? And I know about the sales enablement clarity model. Yeah, I mean, I was at a conference, like I’ve read a ton, but like, to your point, I got to, like, take all of that and simplify it into like, what are the four things I do? Or what are the three things my new team is going to do so, so I’m taking notes, because I’m learning.

Scott Santucci 30:31

So, if we’re thinking about a business within a business, and you’re consulting services, are the way for you to stay engaged with the investors, part of what we need to do is we have to communicate to the investors what you’re currently doing, but we also have to start planting seeds about what else you could do. That makes sense. Makes sense. Great. So, what I’d like you to do is think about like any business, there are four potential business lines or service areas. And that sense sales enablement exists. Where it’s the most valuable is when it’s producing the most stuff. Actually, it’s the most value when it’s eliminating things to create simplicity. So, we’re much more effective if we think about continuous business processes, rather than more deliverables. Does that resonate before? Yeah. Okay. So, there are four basic business end to end business processes. And I’m going to go through those real quick and then we can, you know, pick on any one of the four that you want to dig into. So, one business process that I like to call hire to retire is about aligning the sales organization with the human resources department. And it should be pretty, pretty straightforward. It is about making sure that the experience of our all of our sellers is fantastic from when they get hired to when they get retired either by choice or they move on to a different role. So, service area or business line area number two would be around the business process that is about bridging the gap between the product marketing brand, a marketing strategic marketing side, and the sales organization. And I call that business process concept to contact. And really what it gets to is as we move to more and more complexity, and a desire to have our reps to sell higher, and do more cross selling, our capabilities tend to be organized by very discrete individual products. So, there’s a way to unite all of those under one, one umbrella and that’s what we call concept content. The second or the third area is I’m going to define it first in then we can figure out who it’s alignment between. But we call this contact to contract. And that business process is really about the manufacturing of all the opportunities. And its alignment between sales finances involved because they definitely want to see pipeline status, but also between the marketing departments that are more around facilitating deals, so demand Gen, might be Product Marketing, etc. The fourth area is the business process that we call that the contact to contract or contract apartment contract to revenue process. And that’s really all the administrative things because once you’re the job of the seller is really let’s just get the contract. After that, though, there’s a lot of stuff that has to happen in terms of is it entered into the system right, that we quoted correctly. Does delivery happen? There’s just so many different administrative processes that happen, that there’s a great opportunity there for simplification. That’s really the alignment between sales and a lot of the stakeholders who are involved in administration, whether it be folks from finance, folks from internal operations, clients, and it. So those would be the four basic service categories.

Sandra 34:28

So, I think the one where I’ve had the bigger challenges around, I think you call it concept to content, that partnership with marketing. Could you expand a little more on that? Because that’s, that’s an area that I actually have not focused very well.

Scott Santucci 34:46

Well, it’s I think it’s challenging because the mindset that we have, if we have a sales background is that we were ally. Some people told me that we rely on marketing to set the table but they’re doing the work. On customers and things like that, the difficulty is that in many companies there so I like to think about it is we look at our customers through individual piles of glass, which would be our different stakeholders. But our customers are really a stained-glass window. So, fitting all of the piece parts together is a burden that sales enablement must take. But if we could push that burden upstream more, it becomes easier. So really, the problem that we run into is there’s so many people providing us different messages about what you know what things happen and not enough structure scenarios, that there’s a great opportunity for improvement in partnership with the marketing and product groups about how to package capabilities so that they’re not about your products, but they’re about results that your customers want to achieve. God thank you So there’s a lot of opportunities there to maybe define if you’re experiencing those problems. What happens, in most cases Sondra is that the sales enablement group absorbs all of those problems. And then just tries to deal with it either through training or the like. But there are many other opportunities to fix that problem by going upstream and saying, hey, look, we don’t have the right kind of content strategy to be able to handle this. We need to be able to reinvent it re envision our packaging our capabilities, and we have to package our capabilities in a way that’s more aligned to helping us cross sell or sell at a higher level.

Brian Lambert 36:49

And this is Brian so just as a bit of a quick recap of the four are basically hire to retire which is the interlock with a HR and sales concept to contract Act, which is marketing and sales, contact to contract, which is your demand Gen area. And then contract revenue, which is more sales enabled our sales administration. So, Sandra you you’ve spend most of your effort right now more in the hire to retire the sales talent area with HR and sales. You’re talking about concept to contact, which is, you know, marketing and sales and what that might look like there. Right. So, I just wanted to recap that. And then back to the stakeholder view, you know, what type of relationships do you currently have underneath the CMO you mentioned or in marketing in general? How does that look?

Sandra 37:47

So, it’s sort of the CMO, cmo and I know each other pretty well. But it’s more we know each other. We’re not really working tactically together. It’s sort of separate work. So, I think there’s, I have her ear. But we haven’t really talked tactically about how these two things connect.

Scott Santucci 38:09

Gotcha. So, if we were to move into business consulting, so we talked about a service that you could offer back to your executive teams, as a consulting service, one consulting service that you could do, and this is something that that we talked a little bit about before. Brian and I on our podcast, is really do a what I like to call a hidden cost a sales report. And what you can, what you can do is just say, look, the real reality exists that there is money being spent to quote unquote, help sales. Not all of it is under your purview. So, we need to first take inventory of all of the things that are all investments that are being made to quote unquote, help sales Put them into categories and see what that spent looks like. I did this bend at several large companies, other large companies. And it’s shocking what this looks like one company was spending $8 billion just to support reps. And it was pocketed in it, they had 37 different training departments providing stuff just for sales. They had many, many, many product marketers, and you look at one individual product marketer and go well, and they’re not a problem. But when you start multiplying it by how many they are, what budgets they have, and what they spend on and there they are evaluated by how much they publish, not so much of the value of it, it gets out of hand very fast. So, an opportunity could be sort of like how people look at government spending is do an analysis and say here’s the here’s what our budget is Here’s the value that we’re producing. And here’s what we’ve got. Here are the other groups that are producing stuff, quote unquote, stuff for for sales, and here’s how they’re evaluated. These things cancel each other out. If we were to move these things under my purview, then here’s the results that I’ll give you. Since you already have a relationship with, or at least know how to speak finance, that’d be easy for you to do. It’s just make sure you broaden the scope of what quote unquote, sales enablement is. And there are marketers who are spending lots of money to quote help drive revenue. Right. Yeah. That’s a simple way to solve a complex problem. I’m not saying it’s, it’s, it’s not fast, right. But you already know how to go about building a building consensus and doing that kind of report reporting. Maybe that’s sort of the next area that you can focus on on your next moonshot. would be, hey, look, we have a lot of marketing materials. We’re not going to evaluate whether it’s good or not good. We just know that we’re in in misalignment. Let’s first quantify whether this is a problem or not. And quantification of the problem. And the next issue then we can tackle would be let’s take inventory to show where it’s where it’s misaligned. And by providing more structure, then you’re not having the he said she said problem of marketing says this about sales sales says that about sales alignments, not the goal. The goal is continuity. The goal is simplification. Got it thank you. No problem. Yeah, makes sense. So, I think that the like, sort of, you know, to summarize here, we have two challenges, right? If you’re in stage two, how do you get out of stage two, you can go to another new a new country. And hope that the people there were will be different than the people that you’ve got. Or you can say, Hmm, how do I build a new operating model so that I can scale? And then how do I leverage this this scorecard to say these are the things that we’re currently doing here are here are new areas that we can do, and gain the support of the, you know, the great relationships that you currently have, which is a business unit headed and people in finance? That’s a great power base to start from, you have a great foundation to highlight new problems and say, here’s, here’s the department that can address them.

Sandra 42:49

I like it. And you know, you’ve reminded me about those strong stakeholder relationships that I do have and, you know, leveraging those as I sort of rebuild out my offer.

Scott Santucci 43:01

So, and I think that here’s, here’s sort of the thing to ask yourself, right, the thing to ask yourself, the grass is always greener somewhere else. Right? So, the question to ask yourself is, how strong are those existing relationships that you do have? Right. I have to consider that. Yes. And there’s they’re strong, there’s some uncertainty, but they’re strong. So, you have strong relationships, which is great. The, you’re going to need to in either case, you’re going to need to inspire so to take on a moonshot. Hmm, we still Kennedy still needed to call it out. And what did he say? When Kennedy in 1962, when he said, we’re going to go to the moon, which everybody thought was insane, just totally insane. He said, we do these things, not because they’re easy, but because they’re hard. And that’s So inspirational. How can you tackle some of those things and give them an identity? We’re going after the marketing spend and optimizing it, not because we want conflict, but because we want, we want to make everybody’s jobs better. Right? Everybody, you know, whatever the case is, give it that identity. And you’re going to need to ask yourself, is it Are you in a better spot to get sponsorship to drive on those new areas, those those tackle that new turf? If you have strong relationships already? Will you be back? Or are you going to go and do the same thing that you’ve done in a different company? And maybe start without any frustration? Like those are the two questions that you need to ask yourself. And I think everybody needs to ask themselves. Mm hmm. And I can’t answer that for you. But what we can do to say, look, it sounds like you need to innovate. First off what does your operating model looks like?

Sandra 45:02

Yes. Agreed.

Scott Santucci 45:06

All right. Well, I think that’s that’s, that’s good for where we are in terms of a podcast. Brian, you want to wrap up and summarize what what we what we covered for our audience and and to see whether a country agrees with that?

Brian Lambert 45:18

Sure. Yeah, I’d love to do that. Let me recap the best I can we covered a lot of ground and, but they were and then and then at the end of this, Sandra, let’s let’s have a bit of a discussion. I’d love to hear one if you agree with the recap and then to what questions you have or, you know, action items you might need, you know, to discuss, etc. Because we covered a lot of ground. So, there are two main buckets of this. And when he reached out to us, you know, that we didn’t know what these buckets were but through the discussion with Scott, there’s this idea of you know, your in evolution, you know, how do you evolve and then two what are your what are your moonshots? You know, what, what vision might you have for going forward? In the evolutionary view, there’s evolution from becoming a purveyor or seller of programs to line of business and evolving that to a strategic function. So, how do we how do you elevate your function? And to do that, you know, we discussed the idea of an operating model or a business within a business. In bucket two, it was this idea of, you know, what are your What are your moonshots and in bucket two, with this, the thinking through leveraging this concept of business within a business, therefore, kind of service lines that Scott outlined. You know, one was hired. to retire, which is working with, with HR. The other one is concept to contact, which is marketing and sales alignment, contact to contract, which is demand, manage and demand management and then contract to revenue, which is more in the sales, administration space. And then that second bucket it was more around, you know, what are your existing relationships, but also, what do you want to offer? And what do you want to sell? And so, the netted out, it comes down to this conversation of, you know, what’s, what’s your operating model? How do you solidify that, manage those stakeholders? And then the second area of you know, what are you selling now? And what are you going to sell going forward? And then the final piece of this discussion was this idea of, do you do it there where you currently are and or move on and the questions there. You know, how strong are the existing relationships that you currently have? And then I would even say, you know, to summarize that it’s, can you take advantage of the opportunity to change to provide some clarification? Because your company’s in flux, and maybe that’s a, that’s an opportunity that can be seized here, as opposed to a negative. So that’s, that’s what we covered for ground. I don’t know if that gives you a ton of answers. I know it probably gives you a lot to think about. But I’d love to hear from you on what clarity this might provide you and then what are you thinking for moving forward?

Sandra 48:38

Well, you know, in my current role, you’ve given me a lot as you said, a food for thought and things that I can do. That’s going to be hard work. And that’s what you know, Scott mentioned earlier, when I think about a new opportunity, though. I can go in and say you know what, if I join your company, I run this like a business Within a business, and I tackle it in these four ways, and that’s going to require that I have a strong relationship with HR, finance, and all of those things, I need to meet those people before I joined. I can, I can have greater influence in a new position by coming in and saying, this is how I do it. And then they hire that thing, that operating model versus trying to reinvent myself. So, as you’ve got me thinking about this, the easier path would be to go into an organization and say, here it is, this is what I do, here’s how I operate. This is what you’re signing up for and I will solve x business problem for you tell me what that is so that, you know we can work together on solving that business problem with this structure.

Brian Lambert 49:50

I like that a lot. And the only thing I would say on that is, you could say what problem and ask them and and Scott and I both know a lot of times, they don’t know. One, one approach that I’ve seen work is, hey, when I come in, in the first 90 to 120 days, here’s the assessment that I’m going to do and it’s going to be across these four areas and here’s how I’m going to approach it to figure out what we do and we’re going to do we’re going to figure out what problems to solve together.

Sandra 50:20

That’s great. I like that.

Brian Lambert 50:22

Because it’s the world is in such flux that asking folks what to do, it actually turns into a little bit of the whack a mole problem that you’re in now. Because it’s so so much change going on. So that’s just one thought. But I love the idea there and would love to keep up. Keep in touch with you as you move forward. And, and certainly, our listeners I believe, are finding immense value and you putting yourself out there and we’d love to have you back with kind of an update on on what you’re doing there and, and let us know how we can help with the business within the business and as you know, thinking through either staying in and out Leaving and what that might look like because certainly in my view, folks on the inside or nation need to hear from strategic thinkers like yourself, this has been really refreshing and great to have you on. And I really think you’re doing a lot of the right things and, and a lot of the challenges that you’re facing, are because you’re you’re kind of the first through the wall in many areas and that that’s not easy so I wanted to recognize that and thank you for putting yourself out there.

Sandra 51:28

Yeah, and thank you both for your insights today. I’d be happy to come back at some point and share where this journey has taken me. I appreciate your advice, your insights, and you probably this probably isn’t the last that you’ve heard from me, it just might not be on a podcast.

Brian Lambert 51:46

Okay, great. Well, thanks everybody and for listening and as always, send us your comments. send a note to engage@insidesecom. Make sure you like and share it and make sure you tell your friends about Adding inside sales enablement to their podcast player for Scott and Sandra. This is Brian Lambert, thanks so much for joining us. We’ll see you next time.

Nick Merinkers 52:10

Thanks for joining us. To Become an insider and amplify your journey. Make sure you’ve subscribed to our show. If you have an idea for what Scott and Brian can cover in a future podcast, or have a story to share, please email them at engage@insidese.com You can also connect with them online by going to insidese.com following them on Twitter or sending them a LinkedIn request.

Newsletter Subscriber

Subscribe to our list!


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.