Ontex, a leading international provider of personal hygiene solutions, decided to structure an environment that was changing both internally and for customers. Together with Perpetos, they set up a continuous learning and coaching program. The program helps Ontex to align skills across their Divisions in the numerous countries where they are active.

Fast growth in a global economy

Ontex’s innovative products are distributed in more than 110 countries. Over the last couple of years, the company has shown clear growth, expanding both its international footprint and its brand’s importance. Stéphane Viguier, Group Sales Capability and Distributor Director: ‘We were aware that the key factor of success with acquisitions is consistency in processes and a uniform methodology in sales training.’

Connecting with a long-term partner

Stéphane Viguier started looking for a partner who could help to drive this change project. The criteria for this partner were defined as:

  • looking beyond training – and building competences instead
  • able to build a long-term partnership – because learning is not a one-off event
  • offering a suitable methodology – customisable to Ontex’s situation
  • able to comply with the 70-20-10 rule (70% on the job; 20% coaching; 10% classroom)
  • having references that demonstrate an understanding of Ontex’s business & categories
  • able to facilitate in different languages

‘Perpetos showed the ability to understand the context and go beyond our briefing. They challenged our vision and added value to the program,’ clarifies Stéphane Viguier.

Roll-out of a continuous learning and coaching program

‘To stay ahead in a rapidly changing world, we wanted to build a continuous learning and coaching program and structure skills across countries and Divisions’, says Stéphane Viguier. The main components of our program are:

  • One single way of selling
  • Coaching as a culture and a way of working
  • One single vocabulary and (sales) language across all customer-facing functions

The program was implemented through classroom sessions, knowledge reinforcement and coaching. Perpetos delivered training across multiple European countries and supervised further deployment in Africa, LATAM and eastern Europe through a train-the-trainer program. The latter ensures that key messages, learning skills and delivery methods are consistent, no matter who the trainer and training organizations are.

The training program was first implemented with senior management level, before being rolled out through the global organization.

‘We trained our Account Managers, and soon our Product Specialists. In a second phase, we introduced sales coaching to ensure the acquired competences are fully embedded. We now go beyond the Healthcare Division and roll out also into what we call the our Mature Market Retail and Americas Divisions’.

The training and coaching program has also been incorporated in the KPI’s of Ontex’ Sales Management where it has been deployed.

Maximising sales performance and commercial alignment

‘With our newly gained insights into the buying cycle and its corresponding type of messaging, we’re fully prepared for growing existing customers and capture new ones. These insights have also allowed us to better promote the benefits of a CRM system for our sales reps’ day-to-day work and performance.’

Some of Ontex’s Division marketing departments have been involved in the program and are excited about it; this allows them to share a common language with sales and bring new messaging materials.

‘Our collaboration with Perpetos has been great all along. They confirmed their ability to put themselves in Ontex’s shoes. They’re real solution providers,’ concludes Stéphane Viguier.

About Ontex Ontex is a leading international provider of personal hygiene solutions, with expertise in baby care, feminine care and adult care. Ontex’s innovative products are distributed in more than 110 countries through Ontex brands such as bbTips, BioBaby, Canbebe, AdultMax and Serenity, as well as leading retailer brands.

Employing 11,000 passionate people all over the world, Ontex has a presence in more than 25 countries, with its headquarters in Aalst, Belgium. Ontex is listed on Euronext Brussels and is part of the Bel20 and STOXX® Europe 600. www.ontexglobal.com

About Pascal Persyn

Pascal supports organisations in delivering commercial excellence in the areas of Sales Enablement, Content Strategy and Buyer Journey Enablement. His pet projects are about helping companies overcome challenges due to the empowered customer and thus evolving into buyer-aligned organisations. His executive experience in private, VC-backed and public companies enables doing the right thing at the right time with the right people. Don’t hesitate to contact Pascal for expert advice: pascal@perpetos.com