The Player/Coach of Sales Enablement with Sheevaun Thatcher

Joining me this week is Sheevaun Thatcher.

Sheevaun is somewhat of a legend in the sales enablement space. She created the role before it was actually even a role. About 15 years ago, she started performing the role of “Player Coach,” as she mentions in the episode, for a company she worked for. She’s been there from the beginning and has seen the sales enablement profession develop into what it is now.

In this episode, we dive into her wisdom accumulated over those years, especially from her time at RingCentral, where she grew an incredible team and the company from a $20 stock to an almost $500 stock in five years.

Beyond unpacking what it means to be a “Player Coach,” we talk about:

  • The importance of taking risks, learning from mistakes, and not seeing them as failures of valuing innovation over incrementation, or taking an analytic or systemic view of a sales organization.
  • Tribal knowledge, and how you can’t train this top down; you have to enable people from the bottom up.
    • [you’re going to love Sheevaun’s detailed explanation of her methods: using one-on-ones + cadence, consistency, and focus to distribute and decentralize the spread of tribal knowledge]
  • Her famous catchphrase: “Responsible to, not for” and what that means in making a successful sales enablement function.

I loved recording this episode with Sheevaun and I’m convinced you’ll enjoy listening to it. Please sit back and enjoy my episode with Sheevaun Thatcher.

Full Episode

Guest Links

Show Notes

  • How Sheevaun started the sales enablement role at her company. (00:03:13-00:11:21)
  • The “Player Coach” role. (00:11:22-00:19:57)
  • Tribal knowledge and how should this be trained from the bottom up. (00:19:58-00:23:43)
  • Sheevaun’s methods: using one-on-ones and discussions with cadence and consistency. (00:23:44-00:26:10)
  • What role does a manager play? (00:26:11-00:33:38)
  • What constitutes a strong, successful sales enablement team? (00:33:39-00:36:15)
  • Learning Culture. (00:36:16-00:41:16)
  • Her catchphrase: “Responsible to, not for” and what it means for making a successful sales enablement function. (00:41:17-00:43:34)
  • Sheevaun’s goals and priorities for future opportunities. (00:43:35-00:47:19)
  • Quick wins. (00:47:20-00:49:11)
  • Why does she do what she does? (00:49:12-00:50:45)
  • Sheevaun’s message to our listeners. (00:51:06-00:53:02)


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~ This episode is brought to you by The Learning Culture Experience~

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