Patrick Aitken

Current Role: Director of Sales Enablement
Company: Sojern

How did you get into Sales Enablement?

I was working in customer success and as a manager I realized I wasn’t able to fix the operational problems of the business. My direct reports were frustrated about how the business operated and I had no influence over it. I recognized through the enablement and working in the sales operations side of the business, I was able gain influence over process and how we go about setting up things and doing things in a way that made sense. By getting into enablement, I was able to put myself in the shoes of different parts of the organization.

What accomplishment are you the most proud of?

My ability to make Google/G-Suite work for the businesses that use it. I think G-Suite has a ton of functionality that’s underutilized. By putting some thought into really looking at the toolset that G-Suite offers, you can build a really fundamental sales enablement framework. There’s so much you can do with the basic Google business account when you string it altogether. I’m sure other folks are using it as well, but it’s the one thing I can ring my bell on because I haven’t had to rely on many 3rd party tools at this point and been able to accomplish quite a bit with Google.

What are you currently working on?

I’m starting to look elsewhere (at third party tech) from a survival standpoint because it comes down to ROI tracking with finance what they want to see. I’m working to provide some sales enablement metrics so I can track on a per-user basis. I can see an aggregate of who’s looking at what, but I’m not yet at a place where I can say “this content led to this deal which resulted in this much revenue”

What do you hope for the Sales Enablement Society?

I’ve enjoyed it so far. For me it’s been validation in what I’m doing and not just following my own compulsions. It’s validating some of the things I focus on. Someone else may not appreciate why I’m looking at this thing that appears to be menial, like how somebody is distributing content. “Why does he care so much about that?”. Not everyone understands without having the foundation in place, you can’t be successful anywhere else. You can have beautiful content or amazing training sessions, but if you’re not recording all that, if you’re not putting it somewhere reference-able, it’s like the “If a tree falls in a forest, and no one’s there to hear it”. I think the society has been helpful for me in where I’m heading directionally with my program. I think our foundation is in place and the next thing I want to tackle is live product training.

What do you do when you’re not at work?

Something that I’m really passionate about outside of work is music- I play bass with some buddies. We’re a “band”, in that we haven’t played any live gigs yet, but have a studio in San Francisco that we call “the Superman Room”. It was actually the person who got me into enablement who, while I’d just had a kid, he said, “You have get that habit going otherwise that musical gene might die”. So we started to play music together and another guy I work with plays drums. So it’s all these guys from my former company, and we’re a pretty functional 90s alternative-rock cover band. With enablement, what’s cool about it for me has been the connection- being a part of an organization where I’m able to be super-creative where I can put that audio-editing, video-editing, web page creation to work. it’s been really valuable.

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