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Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue ScientistFri, Dec 21, 2018 5 min read

5 Sales Enablement Mistakes We See Too Often

Today’s business market is more competitive than ever before. Sales is often the department that organizations turn to first when they begin looking for ways to bolster revenue and improve performance. As a result, sales is often under a good deal of pressure to succeed.

If you want your sales team to succeed, you need to give them the right support. That’s where sales enablement comes in.

What is sales enablement?

The idea of enabling your sales team is to offer them the unique support they need to be successful in their jobs. To that end, enablement offers the right training, development opportunities, content, processes, and tools to your salespeople.

Like almost any other great business idea, though, there’s a right way and a wrong way to implement enablement measures in your sales department. These five mistakes are some of the most common stumbling blocks.

1. Equating Sales Enablement with Sales Training

Sales training is important. The right training and development opportunities can help boost productivity and sales.

That said, sales training is not the same as sales enablement. Enabling your sales team takes so much more than providing training alone. You want to be sure your team has the right learning opportunities, but you also want to be sure you’re providing more support

If your enablement program consists solely of training measures, you need to expand the program.

2. Believing Technology Will Solve Everything

Another common mistake is believing tools are the be-all, end-all of your enablement efforts. Just as training can’t be the only thing you include in your enablement strategy, neither can you provide technological tools and hope for the best.

Your sales reps need the right tools to get the job done, but they also need training to support the use of those tools, and they’re going to need training in other aspects of sales. They’ll also need the right compensation, content, and processes to succeed.

3. Thinking Content Is the Answer

You might notice a theme when it comes to sales enablement mistakes. People tend to think taking one aspect of enablement and focusing all their energy on it will solve the issues in the sales department as a whole. The flaw in this logic should be obvious by now.

It doesn’t stop people from believing they can boost sales performance by providing more or better content alone. Just like training and tools won’t resolve all of your sales performance concerns, however, neither will content.

Providing the right content is important, but it must be done alongside other sales enablement measures.

4. Measuring the Wrong Metric

This is a common problem, not just in sales enablement, but across departments and business strategies. You have so much data at your fingertips, you don’t know what to do with it all. You pick a few metrics to measure performance, and now you magically know what’s working and where you need to improve.

You need to watch which metrics you select. Not all metrics are created equal, and many of them can create a misleading picture of your sales efforts. Take stock and be sure you’re measuring the performance metrics that truly count.

5. Not Giving Enablement a Chance to Work

You’ve adopted a sales enablement strategy, and you’ve started to implement it. You’re not noticing any difference in your sales team’s performance. What’s happening?

You may be tempted to switch to a new system or strategy the second you’re not seeing results. Keep in mind, however, that enablement strategies can take time to produce the results you want to see. Be patient, and you’ll likely see the strategy bear fruit.

It’s easy to avoid these common mistakes. If you’re not sure if your enablement strategy is working, get a sales assessment to discover what you can do to improve.


Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist

Mike is the CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist at Square 2. He is passionate about helping people turn their ordinary businesses into businesses people talk about. For more than 25 years, Mike has been working hand-in-hand with CEOs and marketing and sales executives to help them create strategic revenue growth plans, compelling marketing strategies and remarkable sales processes that shorten the sales cycle and increase close rates.