LEARN Recap: Big, Bold Enablement Trends for 2023 & Beyond
February 8, 2023
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In this conversation from our virtual event WorkRamp LEARN, Whitney Sieck, The Enablement Enthusiast, and Seema Jain, AVP of Revenue of Effectiveness at Mural, shared the biggest enablement trends on the horizon for this year.
We also looked back at a few of the top enablement trends that defined 2022, shining a spotlight on developments from last year that should continue to gain momentum this year.
Read on to learn more about where the enablement landscape has been—and, more importantly, where it’s headed.
Top enablement trends of 2022
For many industries, 2022 was a dynamic year characterized by highs and lows. But throughout the growth and turbulence, four clear enablement trends stood out to Whitney and Seema—trends they think are here to stay. So what stood out as the major shifts, and what does it say about where enablement strategies are headed next?
Seema spotted three major trends that made 2022 unique:
- Prioritizing and personalizing the customer journey. This process involves “differentiating the sales process, better understanding customers’ needs through a co-creative process, and then providing and serving up curated content based on what we learn,” she explains.
- Curating the representative journey. Like curating the buyer journey, this process involves “doing in-depth assessments against performance results, core competencies, [and] skills matrices to identify gaps” that need addressing.
- Demonstrating value by providing solutions that meet objectives and deliver meaningful outcomes. “The bottom line,” Seema says, “is that connecting technology solutions to business value and ROI is a trend that will never go out of fashion.”
For Whitney, the game-changer of 2022 was something a little different: an increased focus on the area of change management, a trend she predicts won’t go away in 2023 (or anytime soon).
In fact, the pace of change is accelerating—and with so much change occurring, she says, it’s critical to help representatives consume the information they need. That means creating consumable, attention-grabbing content that’s not only engaging but flexible enough to adapt to both organizational growth and fluctuations in the economy.
“This is something where we need to help internal leaders educate on the topic, and we need to educate ourselves on the topic as well,” she recommends.
Looking ahead Enablement trends to keep top-of-mind
Now that we’ve covered 2022, what new enablement trends and developments should businesses look toward this year?
Whitney wants enablement teams to think more about conversational intelligence—a trend she says more companies are now beginning to adopt.
“I think that we’re only going to continue to mature the conversational intelligence strategies when it comes to understanding the behaviors of our field. And an example that comes to mind is having enablement being able to provide data-driven feedback to understand and share what’s happening.”
For Seema, 2023 is about fully embracing more elements of human-centered design—for instance, using co-creation strategies to establish a mutual understanding and bring different teams or partners into alignment. She emphasizes the importance of “making our connections more meaningful, regardless of if they occur in person, online, or some combination of both.”
With challenges and growth opportunities ahead—Seema challenges businesses to answer one question:
How will you arm your teams to demonstrate better collaboration and co-creation in the hybrid world we’re embracing in 2023?
Are there any enablement trends from 2022 that will continue to provide value in 2023?
The corporate landscape is going to continue shifting, developing, and evolving. With so much innovation and change, are there any core, fundamental practices or ideas that businesses can expect to remain consistent?
The experts think so—and for Seema, the top practice that businesses should continue strengthening and emphasizing is closed-loop enablement.
This involves five steps:
When it comes to the teaching stage, “WorkRamp really is our solution of choice,” she explains, “especially as we scale programs across global hybrid teams. And we’ll often supplement those WorkRamp paths with live classroom training. But WorkRamp really does give us that flexibility to meet the rep where they are and appeal to different learning styles.”
Whitney agrees with that analysis. “[It’s] so critical to set up something that’s programmatic and strategic and involves all the right people,” she said, “because enablement is a team sport.”
She also shared two more enablement trends that will continue to impact businesses in 2023 and beyond:
- “Hiring a role dedicated to manager enablement is a key to success… [and] I think there’s going to be even more focus on frontline managers. And I think there’s also going to be a continued dedication to methodology beyond new logo acquisition, especially in the SaaS space where recurring revenue is such a critical component.”
- “It’s easier to maintain current customers than to grow the… base. And so shifting that focus to the customer and enhancing the methodology—bringing that all the way through the whole buyer journey—is going to be critical. So I think that’s something that we’ll see more of, too.”
Tips for enablement success in 2023 and beyond
Want to see bigger returns from your investments in enablement? Whitney and Seema share a few tips to help your enablement initiatives achieve more success.
Seema suggests focusing on intentional planning. Instead of getting stuck in reactionary mode, be proactive about looking for enablement programs to address pain points.
One of the best ways to accomplish this is to bring managers and subject matter experts together to align on a clear plan. You should also make sure this roadmap is available to all of your stakeholders.
“With intentional planning, prioritization, and alignment, enablement can have a huge impact on the strategic big bets,” Seema says.
Whitney recommends focusing on your managers, which has the added benefit of providing a multiplier effect as your organization scales.
“We’ve been talking about managers being a key to success and enablement for years now, and we’ve been talking about how it can be one of our biggest keys to success or one of our biggest challenges or blockers to success. And so now is the time to do something about it.”
Her advice? Work with management to understand their workflow—and how programs can be created within it—so that they can maintain a rhythm without becoming overburdened.
Looking for more actionable tips and insights from People, Revenue, and Customer Success leaders? Don’t miss WorkRamp LEARN Spring, March 23rd at 9 am PT. Get your free ticket!
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