We are seeing many organizations struggle to make virtual kickoffs highly impactful and engaging. Executives across sales, enablement, and operations are asking us for help to re-imagine kickoffs for the new normal. They are looking for innovative ways to energize and educate their remote teams with purpose and collaboration. We recently launched SKOx to help companies energize, align and educate their remote teams during a virtual kickoff experience.
Here are ten tips for sales leaders and CROs to consider when planning out your upcoming kickoff events.
- Set Clear and Attainable Revenue Goals
- Come Up With An Energizing Theme
- Align All Go-To-Market Teams
- Create A Multi-Week Extended Kickoff Calendar
- Establish A Micro-Learning Schedule
- Reinforce with Coaching Huddles By Managers
- Engage Teams With Pitch Challenges
- Record Personal Video Stories For Virtual Networking
- Celebrate Success and Key Wins
- Correlate Data to Measure Outcomes and Impact
Set Clear and Attainable Revenue Goals
As we look to the future and hope for an even better next year, be clear on company and revenue goals. Set goals that are attainable and at the same time inspirational to push teams to do more. Write the goals down. Communicate them clearly to your teams. Get all your teams aligned around the goals. Measure the goals and correlate program activity and initiatives to revenue outcomes.
Come Up With An Energizing Theme
We conducted industry wide research with hundreds of sales and marketing leaders on the future of sales kickoffs. The report will give you insights on fresh ways to engage and energize your remote teams at your upcoming virtual kickoffs. One of the findings was that 87% of survey respondents believe the top 2023 sales kickoff goal is to energize teams, followed by team alignment, sharing success and building confidence. Creative themes are always fun to come up with. Get your teams involved in the theme name. Make the theme diverse and inclusive.
Align All Go-To-Market Teams
With remote teams and a virtual kickoff experience, we have a unique opportunity to include all of our go-to-market teams and every customer facing employee in our programs. First, make sure all of your content contributors and executives are aligned on goals and the theme. Then, make sure the program is personalized and relevant to all go-to-market teams. This can be done by balancing broadcasts with role-based breakouts that are both synchronous and asynchronous.
Create A Multi-Week Extended Kickoff Calendar
Most companies and leaders are still thinking about their kickoff experience in days. It’s time to shift mindsets to think about a virtual kickoff experience in weeks and months. Space out the broadcasts. Insert self-paced and team-based learning. Make learning and coaching an ongoing activity. Integrate the kickoff content with the rhythm of the business with deal reviews, prospecting and team meetings.
Establish A Micro-Learning Training Schedule
With a virtual kickoff extended over weeks and months versus hours and days, we have an opportunity to make learning more consumable and accessible. Share topics and concepts in bite-sized learning modules. Get your teams learning, practicing and then applying their knowledge to real deals. Setting up a kickoff experience with micro-learning content, coaching and certifications is actually a more impactful way to get our teams up to speed and to reinforce important topics. Click to learn more about micro-learning.
Reinforce with Coaching Huddles By Managers
Get your front-line managers to play active roles in virtual kickoff experiences. Create coaching huddle templates and meetings in a box for front-line managers to execute with their teams and make sure they are mapped back to kickoff goals and themes. Get your teams practicing and learning from each other with facilitated meetings held by your front-line managers. Click to learn more about sales coaching.
Engage Teams With Pitch Challenges
Get your teams learning by doing. Most revamp their corporate pitch and messaging and most use a kickoff meeting to get their teams aligned. With a virtual kickoff experience, messaging alignment and certifications can be executed at scale. Pitch challenges can be set up to drive up collaboration and competition. Get your teams practicing your pitches including elevator pitch, corporate pitch, demonstrations, objections, stories and every customer conversation. Create micro-pitch challenges and watch your teams become conversationally competent. Click to read about SalesHood’s 10 step pitch process.
Record Video Stories For Virtual Networking
Get your teams to collaborate with meaningful connections. Ask your teams to record their personal stories to get to know each other. Make stories a big part of your kickoff experience. Stories can be who they are, what they do, personal wins, goals and anything that ties back to your theme. Click to learn more about the power of video storytelling.
Celebrate Success and Key Wins
Boost sales productivity by getting your teams sharing and watching video win stories before, during and after your virtual sales kickoff event. Highlight the hard work from the past year by celebrating key wins and successes throughout the business. Congratulate top performers and encourage others to achieve milestones. Record key win stories to share with the broader team and define what success looks like.
Correlate Data to Measure Outcomes and Impact
Data captured in your manager-led coaching sessions and pitch practice challenges are your best leading indicators to know if you’re on track to hit the Revenue targets you presented to the revenue teams. Correlating the data captured in SalesHood to your CRM performance data is key. Doing so will give you the insights necessary to know if Enablement programs support generating enough pipeline or increasing sales velocity.