What is “success” at a Sales Kickoff

The many faces of SKO

I write this as just after the finish of Sales Kickoff (SKO) at my new company and it’s been amazing for learning about our new product updates and sales strategies, hearing customer success stories, and connecting with colleagues over a beer or two along the along the way. That’s why companies pay so much to have these events, but there’s one thing that hits me about halfway through each one – OVERLOAD.

There are just so many messages, stories, updates, and initiatives it’s crazy and while each person has good intentions EVERYONE wants to share a story information. But in reality, I find most people only retain 10% of what’s shared at SKO so how do you define success? Here’s how I look at it:

  • Connection – No matter how many resources, videos, etc. you put together there’s always something special that happens when sales people talk to each other…they listen. I chalk it up to authenticity, since they’ve sold they know – kind of like when athletes are more willing to listen to other athletes more than people who haven’t been in the game. This is a key to remember when delivering a message to sales – you’ll get a lot more mileage out of a sales person delivering the message n their own words.
  • Location – Knowing that there’s going to be way too much information to retain, you instead want to shift the focus to create the knowledge and habits of who/where to go when information is needed.
  • Excitement – People have to leave excited to sell. Sales is tough, you’re generally out on your own, face daily rejection when you’re prospecting, and you know sales is a test of wills. If you can’t get the sales field excited/pumped/stoked coming out of SKO then you’re in trouble.

That’s my take but what’s your memories of the greatest Sales Kickoffs Offs you been to? Comment below.

PS – At SKO, just like at a wedding, it’s not “if” something is going to go wrong, it’s “when” something will go wrong. But don’t strangely that’s what everyone remembers and bonds over so don’t get too worked up.

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