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April 24, 2018 | 5 min. read

5 Ways Onboarding Sets Account Executives Up for Success

Setting up an account executive for success begins with the onboarding process. An optimal onboarding experience will not only help a new hire learn your business but also provide them with the confidence they need to succeed.

Focusing on nurturing confidence in the early stages with a company is key to developing a strong seller from the onset.

Below are 5 easy steps that any business can take to set account executive up for success, starting day one.

1. Provide a Vision and Direction

Why does it feel like you won when your favorite team wins the Super Bowl? It’s because people enjoy feeling like they are part of something bigger than themselves.


One of the most important things a sales organization can do for their account executives is to help them feel part of the team.


That means providing an excellent onboarding experience where they meet the team, learn the core values of the organization, and understand the part they play in the vision for the future.

Transparency is equally as important. When you know the direction that the ship is sailing and why decisions are made, it helps you feel even more involved and in touch with the organization.successful onboardingA successful onboarding process can lead to retaining 69% of employees over a three year period. Less turnover leads to more knowledgeable account executives and a healthier culture overall.

2. Invest in Reps’ Personal and Professional Goals

What is your personal goal?  Is it to retire early, purchase the dream car you have always wanted, or to take that dream vacation you’ve talked about for years? We all have different end goals and reasons for striving for success. Sales leaders should invest in learning what their account executives are hoping to achieve, both in and out of the office.

Working together to achieve personal goals is a great way to align career and personal growth. By investing in them, they will, in turn, invest more of themselves into the company.

3. Provide the Tools for Success

There’s an old saying about having the right tools for the job. This also applies to salespeople. Providing the tools to be successful in any role is key to ensuring success and promoting growth.

Whether it’s investing in the right software, supplying quality leads, or providing ongoing development training, the right tools are crucial in creating success and growth for an account executive. Studies show that continuous training increases net sales by at least 50%, so the investment in training pays off in the long run.

Proper coaching tools are crucial for providing guidance and direction for any new account executive. Live Call coaching is a great way to listen in on sales calls and provide guidance in real time to help accelerate development. Conversation Intelligence allows leaders to create recording libraries of “best practice” clips from calls for new reps to refrence.

4. Provide Reasonable and Challenging Goals

Most runners will tell you that it’s important to set reasonable goals to stay motivated. There’s a reason the popular training method is “Couch to 5K” rather than “Couch to Marathon.”  Working towards a reasonable phase one goal gives you a higher chance of success.

The same applies to sales.

Realistic goals work in a few ways. First, you provide an attainable target that is both challenging and rewarding. An unrealistic goal has the potential to be demoralizing and frustrating, leading to a disengaged seller.

Secondly, as the account executive continues to learn and improve, raising the bar with stretch goals will serve as motivation that they are on the right track.

Achieving goals is made easier with a seamless onboarding process. Research indicates that 77% of new hires with a formal onboarding experience hit their first performance milestone.onboarding performance successIf sales is a marathon, then setting goals in measurable challenges is a surefire way to help reps feel confident with their progress and motivated to grow and succeed.

5. Autonomy to Succeed

Micromanagement is the killer of motivation. When a salesperson finds a (successful) flow for their sales process, they don’t want anyone stepping in and telling them how they should be selling. After all, if it’s not broke, why fix it?

By allowing account executives to develop their own routine and rhythm for their sales process, you are setting them up for success and building confidence. We all like to feel like we are somewhat autonomous.  If a manager steps in and dictates how we spend every minute of our day, it can have adverse effects. There should be a sense of trust.


The onboarding stage is crucial for setting up account executives for future success. Providing the tools for success, allowing for autonomy, and the feeling of inclusion are all great ways to ensure your account executive is confident and ready to take on the role!

Want to learn more about the challenges and solutions that power account executive success? Download the free eBook below:account executive success

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