When new sales reps are hired or get promoted to more senior roles, a role guide is the written document that explicitly outlines their primary goals, activities, tools and overall responsibilities. Role guides should be planned by same-level employees, upper management and any other parties that work directly with the person holding the role being described.
Why is it a challenge?
Creating initial role guides for each role in a sales organization is a significant task, especially in organizations with many levels and layers of employees. All companies are organized differently. For example, if your sales organization segments reps by SMB and Enterprise accounts and has tiers for each role, then it can be increasingly complex and time consuming to create these role guides. As organizations grow, grey areas within these roles increase, and it becomes even more difficult to distinguish between roles. Roles will need to be regularly modified and redefined, so the role guides need to keep up with the changes. This way, they stay relevant to the sales reps, and responsibilities are clearly defined and distributed.
What can you do about it?
Sales enablement can help by overseeing the entire role definition and creation process, making sure there are no overlaps or gaps across the roles. Sales enablement can also write the role guides, but with significant input from the sales managers, and agreement to keep them up to date and get them to new sales reps that join their teams. It is also important for sales enablement teams to maintain and modify these role guides when necessary. This also creates an opportunity for “role owners” to exist for larger companies. These people can be the overall owner of the role guides, and can take an active part in the creation of sales compensation plans for the roles, hiring schedules and procedures, subsidiary organizational structures, training, and community/culture building within the company.