Build a More Productive MDR Team with Social Learning

Dana Youngren
Dana Youngren
3 mins

There’s nothing like hiring a new market or sales development rep who’s ready to hit the ground running, only to have it take weeks or even months to get them up to speed and working productively. With an average MDR/SDR tenure of only a little over a year, it can seem like new hires are leaving just when they’re getting ramped up.

One of the main barriers to quick onboarding is getting MDRs equipped with all the specific information and knowledge they need to do their jobs. And one of the best ways to shorten their learning curve is to let them learn from the experiences of others (a methodology known as social learning). Rather than asking MDRs to retain a bunch of information that’s recited at them in a classroom setting, you can use social learning to keep employees engaged and learning on the job.

One way to incorporate social learning into your MDR’s training is to adopt a knowledge sharing platform with Q&A functionality. MDRs can post questions to the platform as they come up, and subject matter experts can share their responses for everyone to see. This cuts down on the number of shoulder taps required to find information and gets MDRs in the habit of using one central hub for all their questions and answers.

With a practical framework for social learning, MDRs can stop wasting time wondering where to get the information they need and how to evaluate what they find. Instead, they can go to a central resource that’s designed to make valuable knowledge easy to share.

Social learning frameworks help MDRs in two ways. Firstly, they provide a central place to go for resources to do the job effectively, and secondly, they provide an environment for collaboration that includes tools for engaging with others.

Shared Resources

It’s not unusual for MDRs to spend hours, if not days, trying to cobble together the various resources they need to do their jobs. But with a social learning tool in place, they’ll be able to learn much more in far less time. Within such a framework, organizations can pull together knowledge and resources and make them readily available to new MDRs, so they can become fully productive sooner – and do their jobs more effectively over the long term.

The resources available to MDRs through a social learning tool may range from competitive intelligence that others have collected over time to content assets that have been identified as effective for helping get a first meeting with a prospect, and everything in between. So in the time it takes a new MDR to, for example, painstakingly put together a presentation deck for an unfamiliar new product or service, they can just find an existing presentation that they know has already worked well for someone else.

Shared Experiences

An effective social learning tool can do more than just lead new MDRs to information and resources; it can help them learn how to use the resources available to them to greater effect. Think about that presentation deck we just talked about. What if new MDRs could also see a video of a seasoned pro presenting it? Or what if, during training, a manager assigned new hires to watch the video and then create their own video giving the same presentation for feedback from the training team?

Social learning also means – maybe even mainly means – interacting directly with others in real time to get help getting up to speed. A successful framework for social learning may include collaboration features to give new hires a place to go for advice on dealing with, say, a prospect objection. Or it can provide a channel of engagement for mentoring, where a new MDR can go to get guidance from a more experienced member of the team.

Finally, sharing experiences in a social learning framework can include a variety of information sharing tools. An ongoing live feed of helpful information updates for new MDRs is just one example. Another is a Q&A feature that puts them in touch with experts on the sales or marketing team whenever they have questions.

The point is that if MDRs have at their disposal a rich source of information and opportunities for collaborative learning, they’ll spend less time looking for resources and more time doing their jobs.

August 24, 2016

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