financialresultsresizedMeasurement is a critical component to the success of any sales initiative. Benchmarking throughout the process provides the critical line-of-sight needed to ensure your investments are providing the needed return.

Both behavioral and business measurements are integral to your initiative. When done well, these measurements provide key performance indicators of adoption success, providing insight into progress and challenges. A qualitative assessment will help gauge the fluency of desired behaviors throughout your sales transformation process. In order to achieve the future state, a closer look at your history is important.

Assessing Your History

As you consider your team’s readiness for sales transformation, it’s helpful to identify what you think your team’s main challenges will be during the process, and then develop a plan to address them. It may not be pleasant, but it’s necessary to acknowledge any “skeletons in your closet” that may be associated with lackluster results from previous change initiatives. Assessing the answers to these tough questions early in the process will help you identify conflicts and set priorities:

  • How successful were past sales enablement projects?
  • Why were some more successful than others?
  • How do recent organizational changes align with this project?
  • How do recent executive changes align with this project?

Assessing Your Priorities

As a leader, you’ll make assumptions about who should lead the change effort, what needs to be changed and how it’s going to be done. If your organization has competing priorities, none of those assumptions will be correct. It’s critical to take time to assess where this initiative stands on the list of other organizational priorities.

  • What are your critical few corporate priorities?
  • What is the priority of this project compared to other corporate initiatives?
  • If it’s a million dollar baby – Whose baby is it?
  • What other sales enablement initiatives will be competing for this project’s critical resources?

Assessing the Ongoing Process

The better the adoption plan is executed, the greater its effect on sales growth. From the word “go,” team members must un-derstand the desired behaviors expected of them and be given the tools and training to facilitate change. Examine these ele-ments to determine if the team has the ammunition they need:

  • How engaged are senior leaders in the major project events?
  • What are the success metrics that will be measured and reported to support adoption?
  • What is the plan for owning, adopting and sustaining the deliverables from the project?
  • How is the project being communicated to those it will impact?

Assessing a Successful Execution

Once trained, hands-on experience, trial and error, success, as well as failure will eventually lead your sales organization to a place of operational fluency and adaptation. You should begin to see most of your sales team experience a productive use of the new methodologies. Champions and mentors should surface during this phase and help continue the momentum. Assess the following questions to determine how your adoption efforts are progressing.

  • How well are managers reinforcing (inspecting and coaching) the processes?
  • How are success stories being gathered, documented, communicated and rewarded?
  • How are the project success metrics being tracked and reported?
  • How has the initiative to challenges exposed?

The purpose of change is to create an asset that did not exist before. Creating a long-term capacity for adoption success requires a new level of understanding, planning and persistence. Measurement is one critical component of an overall commitment to change. Leaders who know the way, go the way and show the way ultimately experience transformative success.