It is hard to believe that over 88% of the selling year has come and gone for 2018. Self-aware sales leaders should have a good idea of whether their team will hit their number for the year. Of course, that “big deal” could still come in; yet statically speaking most of the selling year has been completed. That does not mean huge deals can’t close by the end of the year, and your team shouldn’t close strong.
With that said, now is the time to start planning for 2019 and closing gaps in your team. The vast majority of kickoffs I have attended center around the “next best thing” or “pumping up the team for a new product.” While it is important to bring new initiatives to the table, it is equally important to improve and remove areas of “Sales Waste” to improve selling time and productivity. Your audience is in front of you and ready to learn – what are the MOST important things for them to take away for the year?
Below are some suggestions to include in your kickoffs for 2019 based on years of experience in Sales Enablement and Sales Leadership. These four areas might help guide your planning for 2019 Kick-Offs and playbook. The topics listed are common areas I have helped clients, and your needs might be slightly different. Feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or feedback. Happy Selling!
START – What should you start doing next year that was absent this year?
- Practice Harder than you Plan (Role Plays)
- Gaining Access and Prospecting
- Initial Meetings
- Overcoming Objections
- Account Plan Reviews
- Create a Solid Pre-Game and Post-Game Plan
- Pre-work is critical – how can you “warm” them up by virtual learning?
- Have a solid Post-Game plan – how will to reinforce the message?
- Consider implementing a commercial teaching model such as the Challenger Sale.
ELIMINATE – What areas of your kickoffs did not show value and you could remove?
- The information they could consume on their own (virtually or in sales meetings)
- Long Product demonstrations
- General Sessions speakers that do not relate to the audience
- Rolling out a new “selling methodology” when your current one could be improved
ACCELERATE – What worked last year which you could give more time in 2019?
- Teamwork and Team Building (they can learn as much from each other as from leadership)
- Activities onsite and offsite that takes the team out of the comfort zone
- Gamification and interactive events meant to bring the team closer
- Dinners, bowling, etc. meant to promote competition and fun!
MODERATE – What topics are needed yet could be reduced to allow for Start and Accelerate?
- PowerPoint Marathons
- Challenge presenters on a number of slides – can you cut 20%?
- Keep sessions short! Follow a rule of 50/10, 50 minutes instruction, 10-minute break. Allow attendees to check their email and take breaks. They will be far more attentive during the 50 minutes.
- Less is More – Attendees can only consume so much information. Say no to some requests.