Partner, PDA Group
How do you define enablement?
For me, Sales Enablement is a strategic, continuous process that provides your customer-facing force with the content, guidance & training needed to effectively engage customers. The overarching goal is to increase sales by understanding the customer, your product/solution and creating optimized processes supported by data-driven insights that create value to bring the customer-facing team performance to the next level whilst never lose the customer experience out of sight.
Describe your current role.
As a partner at PDAgroup, I manage multiple departments and work with all parts of the business, with different stakeholders in Sales, Marketing, Product Development, Operations and HR. My empathic nature allows me to design the right environment that permits people to thrive and to achieve their true potential at any time to foster continuous development. I have a passion for excellence in sales enablement, am an ambassador for lifelong learning, and leverage digitalization as a driver for transformation and success.
Briefly walk through your journey to get where you are today.
If I had not met my very first boss, I would not be where I am today.
Back in the day, I was lucky enough to earn a sports scholarship for a University in the USA. That was one of the best experiences in my life, and during my internship at ESPN, I also met an important role model for my personal development – Murphy C. However, when I returned to Austria, my college degree (B.S.) was hardly recognized in Europe at that time which made the job search a little more complicated than expected. And then I met my future mentor who saw something in me and gave me my first job which already included working and managing multiple stakeholders.
While I was on parental leave, he decided to found another company together with his friend. I was asked to come on board, As it was a start-up, I was involved in all areas of the business and learned from scratch how to run a business, how to manage and optimize its processes. I stayed and here I am, part of the company for almost 13 years. I was given the opportunity by these two wonderful men to personally grow and develop to become the person who I am today. Not only was I developing professionally, but I was also supported in attending a part-time MBA program and there was always full understanding for family matters which allowed me to combine family and career.
What’s your proudest accomplishment?
One of the things that I learned over the years – and this is not directly related to enablement – is how to combine and manage family and business life in a way that neither party is neglected and can continuously develop and grow. I am proud that I was never shy to face any hurdles that arose and I kept going to pursue my goals.
In the business context, I am proud that I dare to step out of my comfort zone and tackle challenges. One result is the Expert Series “7 weeks 7 Talks”, featuring a diverse group of enablement leaders from around the globe.
What’s your advice to someone getting started in enablement?
Always be curious, do not lose your genuine curiosity on how you can enable and support your customer-facing force to unfold their personal best, and never lose focus of the customer experience. Make sure you understand who you are dealing with, who you are serving internally as well as externally and develop your strategy based on all stakeholders involved to get the support you need. Actively listen to your team to identify their needs and have an open mindset to stay agile and flexible. These are key skills to pivot especially in a time as we are in right now. I am also a strong believer in the power of networks – so join, collaborate and gain valuable insights. Dare to reach out, seek for advice, engage in mentoring, find a sparring partner for your ideas – in any possible way.
What are you doing to develop yourself?
I am an ambassador for lifelong learning and currently on my last leg to finish the AoEC (Academy of Executive Coaching) Practitioner Diploma. Additionally, I try to get myself out of my comfort zone, true to one of my favorite quotes by Brian Tracy “You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new”. Listening to podcasts and reading while commuting and in my free time is a staple.
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