Claire Scull shares her thoughts on all things Enablement

Claire Scull, Director, International Sales Enablement, at Veritas Technologies, joined Dr. Jeremy Noad, Regional Host for the UK and Ireland, to discuss all things Enablement, including:

  • As an international sales enablement leader, she recognizes the 80/20 rule whereby 80% of the efforts are standard, but 20% varies for each region’s needs. 
  • The importance of enabling the enablers.
  • Women in Sales Enablement (WiSE).
  • Where does Enablement go from here?

Give a listen and remain curious.

Audio Transcript

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Hello, and welcome to this edition of the coffee and collaboration and enablement podcast. I’m your host, Jeremy node. And in this episode, we’re talking all things enablement with a fabulous classical.

Unknown Speaker
Hi, Claire,

Dr. Jeremy Noad
thanks for coming on the podcast today.

Claire Scull
Hi, Jeremy, thank you for having me and describing me as fabulous.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Fabulous is the perfect word. I mean, look at what you do and different things, I think it’s a really good, I mean to to own it.

Unknown Speaker
Definitely owning it.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
So just share a little bit about yourself and the business you’re you’re working in at the moment.

Claire Scull
Absolutely. So I am classical. And I look after international sales enablement at Veritas technologies. And I know we’re talking a little bit about enablement in a minute. So let me share with you a little bit about Veritas. So for those of you who don’t know, Veritas technologies, we’re a data protection data management organization. What does that mean? Well, we protect our customers most important asset, their data. So if I give you an example of that, we help organizations protect that data and manage it so that they can focus on delivering on their business, the things that matter to them and their customers. A clear example is ransomware a hot topic at the moment, top of mind for a lot of organizations, and should an organization find themselves a victim of a ransomware attack, given it’s, you know, a case of it’s gonna happen. It’s, it’s not if it’s when we can help that organization recover their data from a backup that they have, which means they don’t need to pay that ransom to get their data back. So an example of what bear attacks technologies does.

Unknown Speaker
That’s really interesting.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
And you’re right, it’s so important nowadays, we talk about all these sort of digital tools and have this thing, but that generally means we put all this data together, and then, you know, we’ll leave it for everybody to access. So yeah, that’s really good point.

Unknown Speaker
So,

Dr. Jeremy Noad
so yeah, you mentioned that you’re sort of looking at the International side of enablement nowadays. How’s that? So how did you end up there? And how does that change from say, somebody looking at a enablement team for a particular sales region or a just a country?

Claire Scull
Well, it’s been a bit of a journey, actually. So I started out doing other things before I moved into enablement. So something quite unique about me as well that I bring to this role and to the function is that I’ve been the customer. So I actually was procuring enterprise software, I then we moved to a pre sales and sales role selling enterprise software. And now I’m in enablement, enabling sellers to sell and deliver value to their customers around enterprise software. So I bring that unique lens with me, which I think, you know, helps build that credibility with our with our sales teams. I’ve been in their seat, I understand what it takes to get their job done. And I have an insight into the mindset of a customer when they’re procuring software. So my enablement journey started a few years ago, when I actually joined Veritas technologies, I moved out of a quota carrying role. And I moved into a regional enablement lead role. I was looking after the UK and the Nordics team,

Unknown Speaker
okay, yeah.

Claire Scull
And so that was very much about working as part of the global function working as part of the geo team at a male level at that time, but also bringing those programs and the benefits and the values of that enablement to that regional team, but also really focusing on what mattered to them as a team, working in those markets, working with those customers. So looking at something very specific for their wants and needs to enable them to be better sellers and to work better with their customers in that specific market. Okay.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
So I’ve gone on how it should have is, is it about sort of replication taking sort of best way of doing it and and translating it down to the country and how mature is actually we need to be bespoke for each sort of marketplace.

Claire Scull
I look at it as a as an 8020 rule, you know, as a global enablement function, we invest a lot of time looking at what we need to do to support the overall business. So our plan has to support the plan of the business, you know, otherwise, no one’s going to be successful. Yeah. So we look at what we’re going to be doing for the year and then we look at the program. rounds the the Enable we can put in place that’s going to support our sellers and enable them to deliver for the business against that plan. So it’s considered we take input from across God from the regional teams, we know we talk amongst ourselves, we take inform from our business partners, our sales leaders that we work with. So actually it comes a 360 plan from across the business, but through that enablement lens, so actually, that’s a global NGO level, it should deliver on Bonnie for those regional teams. But then that 20% might be the tweaking of those global programs and enablement to right size for the regional market. Plus, also, having available time to deliver on the specifics for that market might be a gap in a certain skill that they want. It might be that actually they’re facing different dynamics in the market in the UK to maybe an emerging country. So that’s where we get in very specific for those teams.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Sounds good. I like this idea, that sort of 360 view everything. So quite a lot, something I might just steal.

Claire Scull
All right, welcome. royalties accepted.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Yeah, absolutely every time every time. So one of the reasons I thought I wanted to talk to you was was, you have this leading role in wise. For the benefit of others. JOHN, tell us a little bit about what wise is, and then perhaps some of the challenges and the direction that you want to take this.

Claire Scull
So for those who are listening today who don’t know what ys is, it’s women in sales enablement. So it’s an opportunity for professional female enablers to come together through a community that’s designed just for them. It is a global community actually lose track now how many members we have, because particularly over the last 12 months, that group the community has grown phenomenally, I think more people have seen importance in the strategic nature of enablement within organizations, particularly over this pandemic period. And more enablers wants to feel connected to like minded peers. So in our community, we offer a couple of things. Firstly, we we keep close to our values. And those values are really about providing an open forum to share best practices with each other so that others can benefit from the successes we’ve had. But we also share lessons learned. So if we can avoid, you know, avoid a pitfall for one of our peers in our network, we’d want to do that we’d want to help them. Just as in sales, actually, you know, a good salesperson will take the benefit of learnings from one customer to help fast cycle another customer get the benefit realization thereafter. So we take that approach as well. And of course, the thing that enablement always misses. This isn’t specific to women in sales enablement, I will say this, but as enablement professionals across the board, were seen as people who can self enable was seen as the people who pull the training together, design and deliver the content. So we should be able to enable ourselves. And actually, sometimes we just want someone to enable us we want to be the learner, we want to have that dedicated focus and time. So the thing that we also offer through the community is enablement for enablement, which is the term I like to use more often I’m hearing more enablement, professionals talk about it. Because we also need the enablement to do a great job for the organization’s we work in So a really supportive community to help women have a seat at the table within the enablement field, but also to empower them to have a seat at the table in their businesses.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Yeah, I feel really important. I yeah. Personally, I’ve been one I’m always sort of taken aback is there sort of the diverse nature of people sort of career paths to get to enablement. And therefore, I imagine that we have situations where, you know, people sort of end up in this role, you know, and for many companies, I still think this sort of h2, this sort of fixer of broken things, this random pizza and I think the fact that the the the needs to be this network of support, and I think because everybody sort of coming from

Unknown Speaker
predominately you know,

Dr. Jeremy Noad
I wouldn’t even say it’s predominant from sales either now I’d say yeah, because it because the strength I think for enablement comes from this diversity of experiences and and those sorts of approaches, but In terms of enabling the enablement enabler, enabler,

Unknown Speaker
enabler,

Dr. Jeremy Noad
enabler, is really good. But into and but how, you know, as these people sort of join the profession, or Yeah, the profession? How, how would you sort of think about getting them engaged? And how do they find out that this, this is there for them?

Claire Scull
You’re right, a lot of people seem to end up in enablement, just through a circumstance as opposed to maybe through a career design choice. That kind of comes later when people actually find out about enablement, and actually what it offers as a profession as a career as a function. And it’s not always something that’s broadly known. We know about marketing, we know about sales, we know about operations. It’s not so broadly well known about sales enablement. Not always called sales enablement as well, let’s just call that out. It could be sales enablement. It could be salary effectiveness, it could be revenue enablement, or something in that ilk. You’re right, a lot of our great enablement professionals come from a sales background, they’ve carried a quota, they’ve done that job, they have great empathy for that role. And therefore they understand what it takes to get that job done and what a seller needs. Equally, we have people who come into enablement, who haven’t been in a sales role, but they’ve been in an operations role, or they’ve been in a customer facing role. So again, they’ve got that proximity to the customer, they understand what the customers challenges are. And they come up with solving at pace from a different angle. So again, they can work out and assimilate what a customer will need. And therefore what a seller needs to know and do to work with the customer to close the sale. And in terms of you know, what does that person need when they come into enablement? I was actually talking to somebody this week, who is considering making a move from sales into enablement. And we were talking about their background and all of the transferable skills they’ve got. And the way I suppose very tongue in cheek, I described enablement is that you can be a jack of all trades. But actually, you have to be master of many. Yeah,

Unknown Speaker
yes,

Claire Scull
yeah. Yeah, you have to have an absolute appreciation and some experience for the teams that we partner with, as much as the teams we rely on. And that could be solutions, marketing, Product Management, sales, operations, marketing, technical support, you know, the list is endless, all of those cross functional teams that are part of the customer journey, and touch the customer. So it’s much about the transferable skills, and then helping that person make the transition, looking at what they bring with them. And then how you can round that out to support them to be the best enabler they can be.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Excellent. So where do you think we’re going in 2021? We’re hopefully coming through the sort of various waves of the pandemic, but in terms of as a priorities and for sales enablement, sort of continue to build over the past few years. Where do you think we should be going?

Claire Scull
I think we absolutely have to take the learnings from this last pandemic year, I think everybody really wants to get past talking about the pandemic, and past feeling like they’re in a pandemic. But I think there are learnings we can all extract from it. Definitely from an enablement perspective, at the start of the pandemic, we all as professionals how to pivot quickly, we were either delivering a hybrid set of enablement already through enablement, platforms, virtual sessions, or face to face in the classroom. Or we were still pretty much exclusively delivering in a face to face environment. So we had to pivot quickly. And we all did a great job at doing that. By the way. We all set our own bar high, but it’s how do we keep that bar high? And how do we close some of the gaps that we found? So again, why is this a great network to help us share those best practices? And of course, there are other sales enablement, immunities and networks out there. I just mentioned that as well. One, that there are others out there for people to get involved in. And if you don’t know what those are, and you’re listening, and you’d like me to point you in that direction, I’m more than happy to help. But we should absolutely embrace that. So what does that mean? I think it means how do we help our sellers transition as we come out of the pandemic, we help them transition in. Now we have to help them try unsession out, and I think somebody, perhaps. So they’re going to be operating in a in a hybrid environment. They’re going to be operating and selling differently between moving from being fully field to fully remote to now this this mix modality. And so how do we help and support them to adjust back? How do we help them support ourselves to deliver against that? So again, enablement platforms are going to be key. There’s a number of them out there. I think as enablers, we will work with some of them. So how do we really amplify what we need the seller to know, through those platforms? So I mean, things like just in time content, a seller suddenly gets a call, they’re going to go and meet a customer wasn’t in their diary for the week, how do they go and grab just in time content to help them prepare, when they come back from that meeting, there might be some things they need to close their their knowledge gap around, or some things they want to grab to send to the customer and follow up just in time following the meeting as well, whether it’s content, whether it’s enablement for them or the customer. So that’s one thing. I think also in the process of providing enablement, our attention spans have changed, we’ve all suffered same fatigue. Therefore, our attention spans are quite shorter. So when we’re providing enablement, when we’re sharing messaging salespeople to use with our customers, we need to do it in a punchy way. It needs to be short, snackable, modular style content, again, they can grab, use case specific, for example, tailored to that customer conversation that they’re going to go and have. So there are a couple of the main things we’re thinking about, you know, broadly as a, as a function as enablement professionals, I think the other thing that we want to be thinking about as well as revenue enablement, right, we talked about, you know, touching the customer at different points in their customer journey, this year has really showcased to me that it’s not enablement, it’s not just marketing, it’s not just our product teams, we’re all part of that customer journey. We all rely on each other to do a great job with and for the salesperson and the customer. So we need to connect those journeys more clearly between us, we need to understand handoffs, we need to work with each other. And of course, we then need to measure ourselves, we need to be accountable for the value we deliver to our organization, to our sales person and the customer. And ultimately, the connection to the revenue that we help the business drive and bring into the business. Yeah,

Dr. Jeremy Noad
finance, that broadening and looking at it for because from a customer perspective, they don’t care about all these individual functions, do they? They just sort of have the entity and how it all works. And many complaints come from where they drops down to the different departments and somebody sort of says, Oh, yeah, this company is awful, because of one experience with one unusual set of circumstances with one department. So yeah, I think it’s really joining up the dots. And he talks about the measures what what sort of things would you be measuring onto sort of how you sort of get an internal winding going.

Claire Scull
I think historically, we’ve all gone through the, you know, the loops and heaps of measuring how many sessions we’ve run, how many people attended, we’ve done the surveys to get the feedback of scores on the doors, that store really important because we need to understand how relevant what we’re delivering is to our sales people and what they think on it and how we can take their feedback, and pivot what we’re doing and constantly improve it keep being relevant for them, you know, the seller has to be at the heart of everything we do. So we’ve got to keep our eye on that. But as we were just talking about the value that we delivers as a profession, to the businesses we work in for, ultimately, we’re enabling our sellers to help them drive more opportunity to, you know, drive that opportunity quicker. Looking at velocity of opportunity, that expansion of deal size, looking at actually the deal value when it closes. So actually pipeline and revenue return metrics have to be out there as well.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Yeah, great. Very, very good. Excellent. So I think we’re getting towards the end of the time. So if people know more about you and your work, how can they find out more.

Claire Scull
I’m really open to connecting to anybody on LinkedIn, you know, like minded, enablement, peers, people who want to get into enablement. Of course, we’ve got the wise community as well. So you can either find me through the wiser 10 community that’s feminine sales enablement again, or actually just directly on LinkedIn. So two great ways to get hold of me.

Dr. Jeremy Noad
Super. Thank you so much, Claire. Really good conversation. I think there’s a lot to learn and a lot to think about there. For our listeners, thank you for listening to the podcast today, and hope you enjoy the rest of your day. Thank you so much. Thank you, Claire.

Claire Scull
Thank you, Jeremy.

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