Sales Enablement Charter

A Sales Enablement Charter, or a Revenue Enablement Charter for teams that are further along the maturity model, provides a summary to the business about what the Enablement team does, who they support, and how they will measure results. – John Moore, The Collaborator

This is a critical element for any Sales Enablement organization. Without it, your efforts in Sales or Revenue Enablement will likely fail.

Why is a Sales Enablement Charter important?

When experienced people discuss Sales Enablement best practices, a Sales Enablement Charter shows up high on the lists.

The charter is essentially an agreement with the entire go-to-market team (i.e., sales, marketing, customer success, and so on).  This document defines what services reps can expect from the Enablement team, the data, the platforms, the services, that will and will not be provided.

This shared understanding leads to better collaboration, clearer expectations, and a smoother running Enablement machine.

What does the Charter look like?

The specifics of a great Enablement charter can vary from business to business, but the following core elements must be present.

What services are supported?

What core services are provided?

  • Is your team only providing training to the customer-facing organization?
  • Are you providing coaching services?
  • Are you creating content, curating it from around the organization?
  • Are you developing tools?
  • Are you facilitating sales and marketing alignment through regular-scheduled meetings?

There is no one right answer to the services you are providing. Enablement’s role is to help the customer-facing organization overcome challenges, amplifying what they are good at, and reducing risk where they lack the ability to completely remove it. The mix of services you provide should align with your priorities in these areas.

Remember that your buyer is the ultimate customer of your services, however.  If you focus exclusively on making the lives of your sales and marketing team easier, without taking into account the downstream impact to the buyers, you are failing.  The same holds true if you create amazing buyer experiences while making the lives of your employees miserable.  You must find the balance

Who is being supported?

If you are running a traditional Sales Enablement program, the answer may be as simple as your sales team. However, consider:

  • Inside sales?
  • Outside sales?
  • Partners?
  • Presales Engineers
  • Marketing
  • and so forth.

If, however, you have moved forward to Revenue Enablement, where all businesses should be, you also have to take into account other customer facing roles such as:

  • Customer Support
  • Customer Success
  • and so forth

And, as if that’s not enough, as you evolve your Enablement program across the maturity model from Chaos through Harmonious, you will find yourself collaborating across the front and back of the business and you may both a consumer of, and supporter of, services from teams such as:

  • Product
  • Finance
  • Engineering
  • and so forth

There is a lot to consider, and you cannot afford to walk before you run. However, you must understand what you are capable of doing today as well as have a picture in your head of where you are going.

Where does the budget come from?

Ultimately, you want to control your own budget, but the reality is that most Enablement teams do not control their own budgets today. Who is funding your efforts?

Is it:

  • Sales?
  • Operations?
  • Marketing?
  • Product Management?
  • HR or L&D?

What metrics will be used to measure impact?

You need to be thoughtful here and use a mix of lagging and leading indicators to guide how well your Enablement organization is meeting its business goals.

I would recommend reviewing the article on how to measure Sales Enablement to get a better sense of the broad number of KPIs you should consider, but, in the meantime, here are a few key Enablement metrics of each type for you to consider:

Leading Indicators

These are indicators that are visible immediately. Consider metrics like these:

  • Percentage of individuals attending a training session.
  • Time to complete onboarding of new hires.
  • Percentage of content sellers are accessing.
  • Hours customer facing teammates are spending directly with customers.

This is a very small percentage of the leading indicators you can consider. As you can see, you directly influence these outcomes, but they are not metrics an executive will be concerned with.

Lagging Indicators

These indicators occur as an effect, or side-effect, of your efforts and those of others in your organization. These are often, however, the ones your executives and key leaders will most care about. Consider:

  • Revenue from new business
  • Win rates
  • Churn rate
  • Average discount given
  • Deal velocity

As you can see, you do not directly influence these metrics, but your actions should always relate to, and influence, lagging metrics.

How often should you update your charter?

Your Sales Enablement charter must be a living document that evolves as the needs of your business changes.

You may need more training and onboarding if you are in the midst of a hiring spree.

You may need much more content developed if your go-to-market strategy is changing.

Review the charter, at least quarterly, and ensure that it is aligned with the needs of the business you support.