Creating a PlayBook that Wins: The Philosophy behind the Mechanics

April 19, 2016
Creating a PlayBook that Wins: The Philosophy behind the Mechanics

Creating a PlayBook is a big commitment. So, are the rewards worth the investment?

The Aberdeen Group did a survey in July 2015, which resulted in the following conclusions:

  • PlayBook users report 15% more sales reps achieving annual quota
  • PlayBook practices combined with team sales training enables best practice sharing

The Rapid Learning Institute recently made this claim: “A salesperson who belongs to a tribe is working for more than a paycheck; he or she is working to make the tribe stronger, because the tribe makes him or her stronger.”

These references help to set the philosophical context for building the Sales PlayBook, which is what I am writing about today.

Creating a PlayBook is the easy part. I don’t mean to diminish this effort—it does require a lot of heavy lifting to get relevant content developed. But, the hard part is enrolling people to use it, and more importantly, that salespeople find it useful.

Creating a PlayBook that Wins

A successful Sales PlayBook helps drive selling practices—best selling practices that work time after time in your company.

When creating a PlayBook, here are some ideas to think about:

1. Form a PlayBook team that sticks together for the foreseeable future.

Don’t limit the team to sales & marketing personnel. Include people from operations, customer service, finance, and executive leadership.

Select people who have a vested interest in creating and maintaining a process for selling that represents all facets of the company.

2. Roll people on and off the team.

Providing you keep a core of the same members on the team, encourage new members to participate in the discussion about using and improving the Sales PlayBook.

Your team will be more apt to participate in making sales succeed when they participate directly in the process of caring and feeding of the PlayBook.

3. Unlock parts of the PlayBook over time.

There’s typically a lot of tools and content in the PlayBook and it can be overwhelming to give it to the sales team all at once.

Phase the content in and conduct additional training in unison that helps people apply the new information and tools you just released.

4. Make sure you enable users to provide feedback, suggestions, and specific changes to the Sales PlayBook content.

Use a platform that makes this easy, like a Wiki platform, which is designed for this purpose.

5. Make sure leadership is willing to stay the course to hold people accountable to using the sales playbook in their everyday selling.

They need to press through the discomfort associated with implementing this productivity tool, which in most cases is not only an agent of change, but a game changer.

Don’t think that once you’ve placed all your desired content into the PlayBook that you’re done! Creating a PlayBook is just the beginning. You might be pleasantly surprised after a year to see how different your PlayBook looks after people have jumped in and modified it with continuously evolving best practices for selling.

Need help with your Sales PlayBook? Don’t have a Sales PlayBook? Download our free eBook: The ULTIMATE Guide to Creating & Managing a Sales PlayBook.

The ULTIMATE Sales PlayBook Guide


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