My 14-Day SDR Onboarding Plan

Available for download here

This plan is designed to help Sales Development reps hit and exceed quota by giving them an immediate path to success.

  • Product
  • Process
  • People 
  • Proficiency

#1 Product knowledge –  Seek to fully understand how your product integrates into the lives of your customers.  This will help you articulate why your product is worth your customer’s time

  • Problems your product solves 
  • How is your company positioning your product
  • What are the features and benefits 
  • Pricing structure
  • How your product fits into the life of your customer 

Search for the above by using the following

  • Industry articles
  • Company blogs
  • Customer case studies
  • Company press releases
  • Social media profiles of people in your industry
  • Podcasts

#2 People – Get to know who are you selling to and why.  The buyer persona matters because it will help your outreach to be more relevant.  The better you are at determining who you’re reaching out to and why the faster you can start setting meetings.

  • What titles do they hold
  • What is their role and responsibilities
  • What are their typical pain points
  • How do they interact with your product or products similar to yours

What the following places to find this information

  • Company case studies
  • Competitor case studies
  • LinkedIn
  • Industry events / conferences 

#3  Process – Includes everything your job entails, all of your day-to-day activities and the tools you can use to be successful.  Consider the following

  • Time management
  • Goal setting
  • Content curation
  • Content creation
  • Outreach campaigns
  • Role playing
  • Negotiations 
  • Objection handling
  • Customer service

Some of my favorite tools and software are the following

  • Trello – Project management
  • Evernote – Note taking
  • Mailtester – To test email validity
  • Nudge.ai –  Uncover accounts, create prospect lists and account mapping, gain valuable insight into the strength of relationships with customers
  • LinkedIn / Sales Navigator – Fantastic for prospecting
  • Twitter, and other social networks can a goldmine of real time conversations. Inject yourself into the conversation your customers are already having
  • Pocket Save and share your favorite content
  • Feedly – Quickly curate written content from top producers
  • Time Blocking – Become more efficient and effective in your day-to-day activities 

#4 Proficiency – Integrate everything above into a cohesive, repeatable, effective process. Repetition is key

  • Clarify your mission – how do you approach your prospects
  • Determine the goals you can hold yourself accountable to (activity per day, per month, # of meetings generated)Be creative in  your approach to Sales and marketingSell to your customers needsFollow through. Goals focus your attention and help to increase performance 
  • Customer service
  • Follow through – warm handoff
  • Probing questions
  • Listening skills and note taking
  • The basics – prospecting, fact finding, presentation skills
  • Story telling
  • Maximizing your time

Map for SDR onboarding success – Initial 14 days 


Week 1Week 2
MondayCompanyOnboardingMeet the teamLearn the cultureProcessOverview of sales processCold call trainingRole Play cold calls
TuesdayProductAttend 2 AE demosRead through Customer case studiesProspectListen in on customer support callsResearch training (prospecting, case studies, must have bookmarks for your success)
WednesdayProductAttend 2 AE demosWatch product videosProficiencyCreate list of 200 prospectsPractice call cadence and lead handoff
ThursdayProductAttend 2 AE demosAttend 1 SE demoRead through Company blog and support siteShadow SDR callProficiencyCall script overviewVoicemail trainingBrush-off training / objection handlingCold call role play
FridayProductAttend 2 AE demosRead through Customer case studies
ProficiencyTrainingCRM Report training

If your organization would benefit from reading this please share it. For additional sales tips and tactics follow my Twitter and consider adding me to your professional network on LinkedIn.

My 14-Day SDR Onboarding Plan

Software / Tools – Day 8 – 14

We all have blind-spots whether we realize this or not.  This is especially true in Sales. So, as you read this chapter please reflect on all the resources, tools, people and software readily available to you.  For example, what is currently in place to help you succeed? Who are the people you can utilize as mentors and learn from? What are the processes and tactics you can leverage to set meetings?  What is the SLA or (Service Level Agreement) your activity will be measured against. The next few chapters will be your opportunity to explore these and other potential blind spots in order to improve upon your performance.

Day 8-14

We all have blind-spots whether we realize this or not.  This is especially true in Sales.  So, as you read this chapter please reflect on all the resources, tools, people and software readily available to you.  Explore these and other potential blind spots in order to improve upon your performance.

Process & People:

  • What is currently in place to help you succeed?  
  • Who are the people you can utilize as mentors and learn from?  
  • What are the processes and tactics you can leverage to set meetings?  
  • What is the SLA or (Service Level Agreement) your activity will be measured against?
  • What is the process that other SDRs in your organization have used to generate meetings? 
  • What is the process that Account Executives at the top of your company’s leader board are utilizing?  Reverse engineer the crap out of this and find which elements work for you!

Software and Tools: Utilizing tools more effectively will not only make you better at Sales Development but potentially shave hours off your day as you become more efficient. While this is a short chapter please don’t rush through. 

  • What paid or free software do you have available?
  • Does your company use a CRM such as Salesforce to log your activities?  
  • What are some other ways you can utilize your CRM?
  • How are the A+ players in your organization using their CRM?  This is your chance to ask them!
  • What additional tools can you use to gain insights into the people and accounts you are reaching out to?
  • Are there internet browser extensions you can use to make your sales life easier?

Think critically on the above and list everything from the phone, to the computer, even the printers.  Once you’ve written down every possible thing you can think of consider the additional ways you can put these tools to use.  Seek your coworker’s, your Manager’s insight and even search online to learn how industry leaders might be using similar tools.  You can even find me across social media for added ideas.

By routinely assessing how you put your software to use and making adjustments where needed your ability to set meetings will grow exponentially. Once you have finished this exercise proceed to the next chapter.

Software / Tools – Day 8 – 14

Self-Assessment – Day 7

Day 7

Without sugar-coating it, this chapter is about getting brutally honest with yourself. 

The topic we will cover is self-assessment and since I’m not here to talk to you face-to-face you are going to have to find someone to be honest with you. This person can be a close friend, a relative, your current boss, even a spouse. This chapter is meant to be uncomfortable, so get ready to pull the band aid off. You will require a partner to complete this exercise.

While reading this chapter please take a moment with your partner to reflect on the questions. The goal here is to understand both how you see yourself and how others see you. This chapter is meant to push you beyond what you’re used to so if you are ready for a strong dose of reality proceed to the activity below.

Instructions:

  1. Answer the questions below
  2. When applicable have your partner answer the same questions about you
  3. Grade yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 for the following 5 sections (Competency, Judgement, Energy, Focus, Relationships) Your total score will = 50.

Questions like these are one way a Manager can help to determine if you are a fast learner, a good problem-solver, and a versatile, goal-directed person. Since variations of these questions will often crop up during an interview it’s best to get a firm understanding of them now.  Most Managers are not only looking for someone who is a fit for the job but who will also bring additional value to the organization.

Competency – Grade yourself on a scale of 1 to 10

o  What is your biggest strength/weakness? 

o  Tell me about a time in which you developed an unconventional approach to solve a problem

o  Give an example of how you organized your activities when you had several commitments due at the same time

Judgment – Grade yourself on a scale of 1 to 10

o  Give an example of a situation in which no guidelines existed for your work and how you coped

o  What is the greatest risk you have taken and how did you decide to make that risk?

o  Tell me about a decision you made which you later regretted

o  Give an example of your using data to make-a-decision

Energy – Grade yourself on a scale of 1 to 10

o  What are your sources of inspiration?

o  What do you do when you’ve completed your work for the day but see that you have extra time?

o  What sets you apart from your colleagues?

o  What accomplishments have given you the most satisfaction in your life?

Focus – Grade yourself on a scale of 1 to 10

o  Give an example of your ability to work independently

o  How well do you work under pressure?

o  What new goals have you set recently?

o  How do you organize what you do on a day-to-day basis?

Relationships – Grade yourself on a scale of 1 to 10

o  Tell me about a situation where you failed to communicate appropriately. In hindsight, what would you have done differently?

o  What would your teammates say about you?

o  Describe a time when you received negative feedback from an employer, colleague, or client? How did you manage this feedback? What was the outcome?

o  How do you build relationships in a new environment?

Now that you’ve completed the above please take time to reflect on your answers. While there are no wrong answers the questions above will offer insight into who you are and what you can bring to a sales team.  How did you score yourself, how did your partner score you? As a result of the above exercise where do you have room for growth and improvement? What are you going to do going forward to address your areas of improvement? 

Write those answers down below in the comment section or message me on social media if you feel brave. You are ready to move on to the next chapter.

Self-Assessment – Day 7