Sales enablement—that ever-progressing, ever-present area of sales that helps sales become the best it can be—is more of an advantage for learning and development than you might have ever considered. We submit that sales enablement is woefully underused in companies’ learning initiatives. Read on to find out why.
First, some bad news: L&D is failing.
Every company needs a way to train its new employees, educate its loyal employees, and grow its most valuable leaders: for those goals, learning and development should be invaluable. But there’s a disconnect somewhere. Although companies have an overwhelming need for high-quality, quickly deployed learning initiatives, they’re often not getting out of them what they should.
L&D often becomes a money pit, where companies aren’t seeing the payoffs that they should for the time and money invested.
L&D often becomes a money pit, where companies aren’t seeing the payoffs that they should for the time and money invested. Yet, employees still need to learn. The workforce needs to grow. So companies need to find a way to reimagine L&D—fast.
Luckily, we have some advice for L&D teams. There are countless strategies to try to revive an L&D initiative and ensure its success, but we have a few favorites to mention.
First, let employees learn when they have to learn. Convenience is key. Make sure your learners are able to access content when they’re most likely to tune all the way in—whether that’s during slow periods, on Fridays, or after their lunches.
Next, make education a culture, not a checkmark. Create a culture of learning in your employee outreach and initiatives by giving employees choice and freedom. Often, required training goes in one ear and out the other. Instead, present L&D programs as leadership training, promotion tracks, or other clear growth drivers—and watch your employees choose to engage of their own volition.
In the same vein, encourage exploration by each individual so they’ll consume content that applies to them. Leave your L&D library open for free exploration, and watch people gravitate toward applicable courses.
When rules change, update content quickly to ensure your workers aren’t using outdated processes. This boosts customer service metrics, instills confidence in your team members, and helps everyone stay safe with the latest safety protocols.
Also, encourage application of what employees learn in L&D. Studies show that educational concepts stick best when they’re immediately applied, so foster action and application by keeping regular processes consistent with what you teach.
Lastly, make peer sharing easy. When employees have the ability to share content and mull over it with others, they’re much more likely to fully digest it.
How sales enablement tools can help
Now, let’s talk about how sales enablement can actually boost your learning content ROI and foster growth among employees.
A large part of sales enablement is SE tools—software and technologies that help sales teams create libraries and categories of content. Often, these tools include analytics that track content viewership, sharing, and engagement—like DVI’s own sales enablement tool for purchase, called IGNITE.
Deployment tools like this, when loaded with L&D content, can meet several needs for your learners:
- Immediacy: content is available on any device
- Available 24/7: live, embedded, and updated easily across the brand
- Standardizaiton: administrators can update content quickly and across the board
- Easy to share: tools for sharing content across the company and even outside of it
- Enjoyable to explore: user-friendly controls and categories
- Access-controlled: administrator privileges and easy separation of content
Best yet, the analytics that are built in help trainers and administration know how their employees are interacting with material (or how they’re not!)
Applied, learned, retained
Clearly, the tools used for sales enablement could train more than just the sales team—they could train your entire workforce. They’re invaluable pieces of technology that have the potential for all types of valuable content.
So next time you’re drawing up a new L&D initiative or a fresh leadership course, take a look at what your sales team is doing. And consider moving in the same direction.