Previously, Abbott relied heavily on product and clinical training but had no way to know if the Field Sales teams were able to articulate the value. Sales Directors and Area Vice Presidents had no visibility or metrics on how the Field Sales teams were doing. Moreover, Abbott Structural Heart didn't have any formal sales enablement program, and there was no dedicated person in the role.
In a highly competitive market, one that is always changing with new clinical data and product updates, Field Sales teams need to be clear and concise in articulating the key data points in the limited time they have with Physicians who want to know about the safety and efficacy of Abbott’s products.
Jason Gwilliam, recently hired as the U.S. Manager of Sales Enablement & Training, knew that he needed a way for managers to stay in touch with their teams, and with the pandemic creating a totally remote work force, the need was even more urgent. Jason sought out a better way to prepare the teams.
Jason had used Brainshark previously and was tasked with the launch to 330+ US-based Field Sales members, with Brainshark as the central point-of-access to all of Abbott Structural Heart’s sales enablement and coaching needs.
An integral part of the rollout was Brainshark’s video coaching and practice. Abbott Structural Heart launched Brainshark in mid-April and have deployed close to 20 coaching challenges within the first three months. The challenges are laser-focused on product messaging, objection handling, clinical data product positioning and the overall value proposition.
Due to the pandemic, the introduction of coaching has been transformative. “With COVID-19 going on, how are the managers going to stay in touch without physically being with them. Video coaching is a great way for that connection” said Jason.
Accessibility is also key - over 90% of the coaching challenges were submitted from iPhones or tablets.
The Brainshark Advantage:
Once the rest of our Structural Heart team outside the U.S. caught wind of what Jason was doing, they wanted in! So, in a six-week period the project was rescoped, quadrupling in size to over 1,100 globally. Moving forward, Abbott Structural Heart is looking to rollout Brainshark to their regulatory and clinical groups for internal product training.
Prior to Brainshark, Abbott had no way of knowing the impact of their sales enablement programs. Now, with Brainshark’s Readiness Scorecards, Abbott has an even more granular level of detail that they never had before. Jason can demonstrate not only how the sales teams are doing but attribute it to their sales performance. He is able to show senior-level executives exactly the impact of his sales enablement initiatives stating, “Readiness Scorecards allows us to see how the team is doing, how they’re applying the training, where the gaps are and then determine how to fill them.”
Currently Abbot’s sales enablement team consists of only Jason and an administrator, but with all the success in the first three months, plans are in motion to add more people to the group soon.
Results & Value:
- Increased the number of users from 300 to 1100 globally in six weeks
- Launched 20 video coaching challenges to an all-remote workforce in the first three months
- In an internal survey, 82% of the participants agreed that video coaching helped improve the ability to communicate messages to customers effectively
Video-based coaching is a great way to ensure that we're driving the message and that people are feeling like they are being supported along the way
The field sales teams and the regional sales directors crave the coaching challenges
The Abbott portfolio of structural heart treatment options feature products to treat the broad spectrum of structural heart disease (SHD)—encompassing both congenital heart defects and acquired conditions, such as valvular heart disease.