It was the Greek philosopher Heraclitus around 500 B.C. who said, “There is nothing permanent except change.” He likely was not referring to the world of sales, but his sentiment is no less apt in this modern context.

There’s no question that sales forces are change-intensive organizations. Shifting buyer preferences, coupled with the impact of dynamic markets and the introduction of new technologies, have forced sales organizations to continually revisit their go-to-market strategies, update core messages, restructure team roles and responsibilities, and rethink how salespeople deliver value to customers.

But as we know, for many individuals, and particularly for many organizations, change can be tough. This rapid pace of change has put many sales leaders in a management quandary, and the stakes are high. According to SBI’s 2016 ranking of the world’s largest sales forces, the top 100 companies actually lost market share as a group versus 2015, and given the dynamics of global markets, the immediate future will be no less challenging.

Successfully managing through this kind of change requires continuous education and development to ensure reps stay sharp and competitive. Companies both large and small are realizing that traditional programs like the annual sales kick-off, or a one-time new hire boot camp, are no longer sufficient to ensure teams can effectively adapt and grow.

This need can be especially acute in complex selling scenarios. Given the abundance of information now available to prospects online, customers need increasing guidance to determine how a proposed purchase will successfully address their challenges and fit within their existing business processes and sales technology stacks. A salesperson’s knowledge of the prospect’s buying requirements, company goals and industry, are often much more valuable than product or service expertise. But well-informed, consultative sales people are rarely born, they’re made.

So how are today’s sales leaders responding to the increasing speed of change? And how are sales enablement techniques and investments being impacted in response? To help answer these questions, and explore the potential impact of more agile sales development approaches on sales performance, Qstream has partnered with the Sales Management Association (SMA) on a new global market survey. The now available online survey, attempts to understand how sales development itself is changing, and identify emerging trends for how sales organizations are managing knowledge, skills and processes to drive revenue growth at scale.

The survey takes approximately 12 minutes to complete, and all participants will receive a complimentary copy of the final survey report in September 2016. We look forward to your input, and to sharing the findings later this Fall!

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