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What’s Happening in Sales Enablement at ATD 2017?

Thursday, April 6, 2017
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Sales enablement has changed dramatically in the past decade. The rise of empowered buyers, mobile and social media, blurred lines between marketing and sales, and mounting demand for predictive analytics are just a few trends shaping the sales landscape. Add to this, you have increasing globalization, more companies adding virtual workers, and a multigenerational workforce.

No doubt, the task of managing and developing these diverse sales teams has become increasingly complicated, from understanding our evolving role in the workplace, to helping managers find better ways to hire and engage sales talent, to developing sales training, performance support, and reinforcement materials. But even though those charged with sales enablement have a lot on their plates, they don’t have to feel overwhelmed—or alone.

There is a whole community of sales executives, managers, trainers, coaches, and consultants ready to help you at the ATD 2017 International Conference & Expo, happening May 21-24 in Atlanta. In fact, the Sales Enablement Track at ATD 2017 highlights the major trends (and a few pain points) around talent development, team management, and cultural change that are having a major impact on the field of sales enablement. 

Network With Peers 

Start off your conference experience with the Sales Enablement Lunch & Learn on Sunday. During this special event, panelists will share personal experiences with such issues as training and onboarding Millennials and how to align your sales cycle to an agile buyer's journey for best results. You will have the opportunity to share insight, ask questions, and network with colleagues and top executives representing successful organizations. Limited seating is available; first come, first served.

In addition, I hope you can join me at the Sales Enablement Cocktail Reception on Monday evening. At this “can’t miss” event, you will dine on a few complimentary appetizers and beverages and chat with colleagues about what you’ve learned that day.

For even more opportunities to connect with peers, there is the Community Update session on Tuesday morning. I will preview the new Sales Enablement Resource Center for enterprise customers and share information on other upcoming ATD sales enablement programs. You will also have the chance to talk about current sales enablement trends, challenges, and community needs—and help shape future ATD offerings.  

Learn From the Best 

Eleven educational sessions explore several best practices making an impact on critical sales enablement issues.

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Case in point: sales coaching. If you need help in this arena, go to Sunday’s session, Mastering the Universe: Advanced Sales Coaching for Managers. Three experts from IBM describe how its Advanced Sales Coaching online app is designed to be an engaging and interesting way to build coaching skills. That same day, Jason Forrest’s session, 5 Strategies for Building a Winning Sales Team, details key strategies for hiring and coaching a winning sales team will help your company stand out in your industry.

For those seeking innovative training techniques, Monday has two key offerings. John Tintle, director of content and communications for Highspot, shares how organizations should apply in-context sales enablement through things like guided selling, playbooks, and customer-facing learing in the session: Using In-Context Training to Improve Sales Results. And Chris Tine, chief product officer at Richardson, explores why sales enablement professionals need to apply a blended training approach and new thinking about learning content and delivery modalities in the session: Engaging Multigenerational Learners Through a Blended Learning Approach.

Or maybe you need insight on the role of sales managers on success. Kate Fitzgerald’s session on Tuesday, Dear Sales Enablement, Here’s How to Gain My Support and Collaboration. Sincerely, Sales Management, explains how to become a true business partner with sales managers. Meanwhile, Jason Jordan from Vantage Point Performance details how to build a clear and compelling business case for focused investment in your sales managers during the session: Want $3.5 Million? Train a Sales Manager.

Finally, be sure to visit the Healthcare Track webpage to see the other sessions focused on trends shaping this important industry. Also watch the Healthcare Community Blog, as more presenters will be posting articles in the weeks leading up to the event.

See you in Atlanta!

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About the Author
Roxy Torres is a former senior manager at ATD, where she ran the FIRE, sales enablement, and government content areas. For the Sales Enablement Community, Roxy spearheaded the 2015 update of the ATD World-Class Sales Competency Model. Prior to joining ATD, Roxy held various roles in business development and sales enablement at CEB (now Gartner).
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