Spenser Miller-Fellows, Head of Sales Enablement at Invicti, on how his onboarding program sets up reps for long-term success, moving away from scripts to focus on skills development, and how networking with other enablement professionals is key.
He'll be participating on the panel session Building a Human-Centered Global Onboarding Program at the Sales Enablement Festival on May 5th, 2021.
Q. Sales enablement can be quite a nebulous practice to pin down - what’s your own definition
A. The mission statement for our team is that “we build roads to success". When we get down to it, we are focused on helping people to be more effective through a combination of training and equipping our revenue team for the field.
Q. How has the pandemic - and the move to remote working - impacted the way you carry out onboarding at Invicti?
A. I started at the company right at the start of lockdown, so we had to build remote intentionally. Before there, most people onboarded just through shadowing. We’ve built skills focused trainings, learning paths about key content areas, and shifted to an on-demand training model.
Q. How do you use your onboarding programs to set up your reps for long-term success?
A. When onboarding, we start by developing top of the funnel skills (discovery, product value, etc.), so our reps can get into the field as quickly as possible. We have established regular coaching sessions between managers and reps, not just pipeline reviews and our coaches equip managers with the information needed to deliver this feedback.
Q. What sales enablement metrics are most important to you? How do you keep track of them?
A. We track a variety of metrics - from a sales perspective we hold ourselves most accountable to our closed won rate (as a % of qualified opportunities) as well as advancement through our stage funnel. This is done automatically through Tableau.
For onboarding metrics, we’ve just started establishing benchmarks for Time to First Sale and % first quarter quota attainment.
Q. How do you see sales enablement transforming over the next few years? Do you think the pandemic will have an impact upon this trajectory?
A. I think the definition of sales enablement is changing and expanding. Where previously sales coaches would be teaching scripts, now we have coaches focused on skill development (rather than scripts), program managers develop and manage components of the tech stack and e-learning specialists creating content for use into the future.
The pandemic has only accelerated the technology-focused sides of our business by pushing all users to engage with material from home.
Q. Looking back as an experienced practitioner, what advice would you give yourself when you were just starting out in sales enablement?
A. Get more sales experience (even though a large portion of my career was customer-facing)!
Q. What’s been the proudest moment or greatest achievement so far in your career or at Invicti?
A. Looking back at 2020, I joined my company as an individual contributor with no immediate plans to scale. The value that was delivered quickly demonstrated the need for additional trainers, and across the rest of the year we added three members to our team.
We just wrapped up Q1, and I was reporting on the progress of the enablement program. Each member owns a key aspect of our enablement program (shout out to Shay Cliatt - our master of onboarding!) and when I was collecting feedback about our programs, I’ve never received this level of positive feedback. I am so proud and grateful for the team I’ve assembled, and I can’t do this work without them.
Q. What are the key benefits that you feel people will get out of the Festival? What would you say to someone who asked you why they should attend?
A. Networking with other enablement professionals is key. I’ve seen that this field attracts people disposed to helping others and conferences like this are a great way to expand your network with people who love helping others.