Hosting a Successful Sales Kickoff

Hosting a Successful Sales Kickoff

A Sales Kickoff, or SKO, is an event or meeting that marks the beginning of a new sales period, typically at the start of a fiscal year or a sales quarter. During a Sales Kickoff (SKO), sales members celebrate the previous year’s wins, align on strategies, set goals, introduce new products or services, receive training, and boost motivation for the upcoming sales cycle. These kickoff meetings are usually a one or two-day event and are a dedicated time for team building, learning, and setting the tone for a successful sales period.

If you need help starting the process, we have you covered with our tips and best practices to ensure a successful SKO.

What will SKOs bring to your team?

1. Concentration

SKO gives your team the chance to know what the goals for the new year are and to focus their efforts on high-impact strategies to contribute to the success of the company. 

2. Education

SKO will allow you to educate your sales reps on new or updated products/services and best sales practices. They will be able to prospect with confidence and drive sales. 

3. Enthusiasm

Energy and high morale are crucial to high sales numbers. By building up excitement for the new year via motivational speeches and team identity, you can boost their productivity for the year. 

Best practices

1. Have measurable goals

What is the intended takeaway for each participant? Your sales force needs to go home with definitive key takeaways, provided by their leaders, of what success should look like in the upcoming year. 

It is important to communicate both the short-term and long-term goals to ensure that your sales team knows the over-arching vision while understanding how their daily efforts impact their success. For example, X% increase in demos booked or break into X market.

2. Have the right people

Each SKO requires the appropriate individuals, whether physical or virtual. This often extends beyond the sales team to encompass individuals who influence the customer experience. 

You can extend your SKO invitations to the sales team, sales development team, solution engineering managers, customer success managers, and selected industry and partner team managers.

3. Sustain engagement throughout the event

Your Sales team is savvy and intelligent, so you do not need to drown them with never-ending slides. To ensure engagement, have compelling content throughout the meeting.  

You can do this by asking presenters to use surprising facts, personal anecdotes, and many visuals. You can also use panels, videos, and hands-on activities to keep your meeting interactive. 

4. Create a clear and effective agenda

Creating a well-defined agenda is crucial for maintaining organization and clarity with what is being communicated during the event. Share this agenda with your employees to ensure they are prepared to listen and ask questions they may have. 

Your agenda should foster networking opportunities and embrace your company’s unique culture. Typical SKO agenda components incorporate motivational speeches, team-building activities, celebratory awards, and panel discussions. 

5. Provide follow-ups

Learning should persist beyond the final speaker’s closing remarks. If everything unfolds as planned, your sales representatives will leave the SKO with enhanced knowledge, motivation, and energy for the new year. 

To sustain the goals, theme, and enthusiasm made by your meeting, prepare methods to prolong the learning. You can do this by scheduling regular check-in meetings with your team or establishing a dedicated Slack channel focused on the topics and goals discussed in the kickoff. 

Epoch can help with this. Send follow-up surveys and information post-event with just a few clicks. 

6. Effectively communicate the event across teams

The start of a new year often proves to be a hectic time for employees. When organizing a company kickoff event, the key to success lies in effective communication. This can be the deciding factor between employees attending or not, making it crucial for your SKO to stand out amidst the competing demands.

Epoch is a great tool for event communications. The platform will streamline pre-event marketing, invitations, registration, and reminders. Check out our article on ways that Epoch can help your company streamline communication for your events here.

Meet Epoch

For a more enjoyable and less stressful experience in organizing your SKO, consider using Epoch to streamline the entire process. Renowned teams at Reddit, Asana, and more use Epoch to plan and scale their offsites. Epoch also provides them with impactful engagement and feedback analytics. Epoch provides a simple way to communicate and promote events to your workforce, helping events reach employees where they prefer to receive messages. Book a demo today!

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