Highspot Blog

What’s Getting in Your Way of Becoming a Top Performer? It Might Just Be Your Work Environment

sales productivity

I used to work with a woman who would go to the local coffee shop to make prospecting calls. She used to say, “They drink the caffeine and I feed off of their energy.”

A creative co-worker of mine can’t function in the office when he’s searching for ideas. He works from home where it’s quieter.

I find it impossible to work without using two screens. Switching back and forth on one screen drives me bananas.

Your work environment can be motivating or demotivating. When you’re in a particular place, you tend to do (or not do) specific things. You feel different depending on where you are and what’s around you.

In RAIN Group’s latest Extreme Productivity Benchmark Report, more than 2,300 sellers and business professionals were asked about their work habits and behaviors. Analysts reviewed their responses through the lenses of productivity, job performance, happiness, and job satisfaction. The findings revealed that the Extremely Productive (the XP) are particularly tuned in to their environments. They are 3.3 times more likely to organize their work environment to maximize productivity.

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Without Sales Enablement, You’re Behind the Curve

2019 state of sales enablement

The phrase “if you’re not early, you’re late” is one of the most familiar pieces of advice passed down from generation to generation and mentor to mentee. So much so that the phrase has over 1.4 billion search results on Google — which is understandable when you consider how often the advice is applicable. From job interviews to product differentiation, it’s always beneficial to stay ahead of the competition.

Sales Enablement PRO recently published the 2019 State of Sales Enablement and the report clearly echoed a similar sentiment — companies without an established sales enablement function are behind the curve and risk falling prey to their competitors.

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Scalable Quota Attainment Requires Sales Effectiveness

scalable quota attainment requires sales effectiveness

Sales leaders are constantly focused on attaining revenue goals, which naturally shifts the bulk of their attention to top performers. After all, they’re the breadwinners who consistently achieve quota and drive revenue. The general perception is that keeping top performers successful will increase everyone else’s performance as they try to keep up.

This is flawed thinking. Core performers, or “B reps,” are a company’s most valuable asset. How is that possible? Get familiar with the 20-60-20 theory. This approach of grouping sellers finds that 20% of a sales team are top performers, 20% are struggling, and the other 60% are somewhere in the middle.

Research done by the Sales Executive Council found that a 5% increase from the middle 60% of performers yielded 80% more revenue than a 5% increase from just the top 10%. If sales leaders want to increase quota attainment and optimize pipeline generation, they have to start by improving the effectiveness of their core sellers.

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RAIN Group Shares 3 Easy Ways to Develop Self-Accountability and Achieve More

accountability and productivity in sales

Seventy-six percent of The Extremely Productive (The XP) hold themselves accountable for doing what they tell themselves they’re going to do. Only 34% of The Rest hold themselves to this same level of accountability.

In RAIN Group’s new Extreme Productivity Benchmark Report, which includes data from 2,377 respondents, “holding yourself accountable” was the top behavior exhibited by The XP. It was also the No. 1 key driver of Extreme Productivity, and the behavior that represented the biggest difference between The XP and The Rest.

The data is clear: No matter if you’re in sales, marketing, or another field, the importance of holding yourself accountable can’t be understated. If you can master this, you’ll stay focused and achieve greater success.

Here are three ways to improve self-accountability.

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Aligning Sales and Marketing for Shared Success

sales marketing alignment

Since Jinan Liu’s Fine Needle Shop created the first printed ad in 10th-century China, sellers and marketers have been working together to close deals and grow businesses.

Today, the relationship between sales and marketing is complicated. Ensuring that these two groups work together is vital to business growth. And while there are barriers to alignment, the process of uniting these traditionally independent teams around a shared set of goals is foundational to success in our digital economy.  Modern alignment is a truly interactive process — not a final destination — that requires executive buy-in, shared goals, platforms, and processes to support collaborative initiatives.

However, when only 8% of marketing and sales teams say that they are tightly aligned, achieving this is often easier said than done.

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Scaling Sales to Win with Sales Enablement

scaling sales to win with sales enablement

Every founder anticipates the moment when their business must scale because rapid growth demands it. But growing a business is as challenging as it is exhilarating.

That’s because it’s difficult to hire, train, and enable a sales force capable of sustained growth. Only 16% of sales leaders are confident that they have the talent they need to succeed in the future. Research conducted by Xerox showed that 87% of the new knowledge learned in sales training is lost within 12 weeks. And once they’re trained, up to 1/3 of a sales professional’s time is spent looking for or creating content to share with prospects.

Though harrowing, these numbers reveal an opportunity for operational changes that can optimize the sales process from onboarding to content. The solution I’m referring to is sales enablement.

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Highspot Sales Acceleration Partners Fill a Growing Need for Sales Enablement Expertise

sales acceleration partners

We all know that dynamics between buyers and sellers have changed and continue to evolve faster than the time it takes a hot prospect to turn cold.

As power shifts increasingly to the buyer, sales organizations must transform — or get outmaneuvered by competitors. Buyer demands make it more difficult to engage, connect, and close deals, especially as these buyers become educated earlier in their journey. The 2019 State of Sales Enablement report found that more than half of the respondents noticed today’s buyers conducting more research prior to engaging sales than ever before.

The antidote is great technology that puts the right content at the seller’s fingertips at the right time. But this still leaves a major wildcard — the quality of the content itself. While Highspot can help pinpoint content that’s working or not with analytics, the content’s quality must be addressed with deep expertise.

That’s exactly why we’re so excited to announce the introduction of Highspot Sales Acceleration Partners.

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How to Align Your Sales Collateral with the Modern Buyer’s Journey

sales collateral best practices

The best sellers use tailored sales collateral — materials developed by their business to support the sales process — to engage prospects at the right time with the right information to close deals faster. Today’s most effective collateral bears little resemblance to the jargon-heavy brochures of years past. In fact, modern sales collateral pivots away from the vendor’s perspective and instead incorporates insight from credible third parties. According to Gartner, “content that features a third party telling or validating a story is inherently more credible and trustworthy than the same story told by a vendor.”

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How to Create Content That Fuels Revenue Growth

content that fuels revenue growth

Regardless of what line of business you are in, content-based marketing provides businesses with an effective way to engage audiences while also generating new leads that translate to revenue growth.

The prerequisite to driving high-quality leads into the hands of the people who can capitalize on them is to discover what content your target audience actually wants to see. Creating content that provides value follows a methodical process with a few key steps. Here’s how to get started.

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Sales Strategy Demystified: How to Develop, Measure, and Achieve Sales Success

sales strategy 2019

Effective sales strategies are developed through careful evaluation and constant improvement. At Highspot, we work with sales and marketing leaders every day to enable their success, so we know firsthand the importance of a strong sales strategy.

Below, we’ve answered the most frequently asked questions about developing a winning sales strategy.

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