I recently had a phone conversation with Russell about sales tips. Russell and I interacted on Linkedin and decided to go one step beyond that pure digital exchange. We took it in the “real world”, i.e. we had a phone conversation (Russell is Toronto based, meeting-up bit challenging!). We talked sales tips, how much grafting is needed, especially for new business acquisition. Russell is now building a business in chatbot focused on the restaurant industry (early days but check it out here) and what we discussed was an episode from a “previous life” of his. He mentioned a story when he tried to approach a specific prospect (Lyft in this case).… Read the rest
Humans are very complex creatures and I have learned the hard way that a few words badly picked can lead to miscommunication. And ultimately prevent getting the desired outcome. When I realise that happened, I tend to replay the conversation ad nauseam (well, not quite, but a few times) and wish I’d say this or that instead. There is apparently a French expression, “l’esprit de l’escalier”, literally the thoughts of the stairs. Essentially, what one thinks while going down the stairs (l’escalier) replaying a conversation.… Read the rest
This post focuses on sales ops and how to make sure the data captured in a sales process, right from the lead gen stage, flows efficiently across the various parts of the process. And beyond avoiding data leakage, how capturing as much data early on can helps analytics even if some data pieces can be deemed not relevant initially. In this first post, I take the example of a sales ops process built around 4 services / technologies, I explain the 4 groups of data useful to capture and maintain for KPIs and reporting purposes.… Read the rest
Photo credit: Tim Green
Joseph Priestley was a theologian, chemist, philosopher, writer (150+ books), in short, a giant, who lived at the end of the 19th Century. Amongst other things he is known for the discovery of oxygen though other scientists have strong claims for this discovery too (like many discoveries at this time). One thing which absolutely blows my mind is the prescience of on of his quote: “The more elaborate our means of communication, the less we communicate”. Absolutely fascinates me as this is such a salient point these days.
Communication is key in sales process.… Read the rest
Photo credit: Steve Rhodes
“But Michael, you are using a competitor product. And they are a good company. So, whilst it is great you would want to do a POC with us, I am not clear on what specific issues you want to address and, assuming we can address them, what would happen afterwards. Could you help me with this?”
Michael could not help me with this. Michael was a partner for one of the major consulting firm in the world and was keen to do a POC to test the product of my start-up.… Read the rest
Photo credit: Phil
Greeks invented the democracy. And they had an interesting way of voting. They used beans. A white bean was a vote in favour of a motion, a black bean was a vote against. The vote had to be unanimous for the motion to go through. So should the jar with the bean topples and the beans fall down, revealing a black bean, it meant something had been revealed too early and the vote had to restart. Hence the expression spilling the beans…
Photo credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Can you send me some information please?
This is a standard question I hear a lot when starting an engagement with a prospect. A reasonable question and one which, when we have our happy ears on, could be seen as a positive sign. The syllogism could be “All companies who have signed wanted information at the beginning of a process. He wants information. Therefore he will sign.”
But let’s be honest. This question could also mean other things:
- First option: “Please do go away, I am busy but I am polite so I am pretending to be interested by asking you information”.
Photo credit: nicoleneu1
Here is a brief round of interesting posts I have read, found particularly good and thought they were worth sharing.
First of all, a post from David Brock about the companies that believe they have a sales process but, actually, simply don’t. What I like beyond David rather dry sense of humour (notably on things like “gurus” in Linkedin), is the probing of companies that believe they have a process when, actually, it is not being followed or need some updating. The post is here.
Secondly, a post on sales training and who should pay for it. … Read the rest
Photo credit: Andreas Overland
It was Friday afternoon. It was sunny. And I was just walking out of a meeting with a prospect with a big smile on my face. The prospect I just met had shared with me all her problems. It was all there in my notes. It was covering all these important business problems. She didn’t have the analytics on her marketing effort. Her company was selling online but she wasn’t clear what was the products that had the best ratio between visits and actual transactions.… Read the rest
Photo credit: Pacheco
Have you seen this slide that regularly goes around on LinkedIn presenting the amount of time a sales person needs to follow-up with a prospect to get a deal and how many sales people stops too quickly.
You can’t have missed it. It comes back over and over again and is coming from the so-called “National Sales Executive Association”? Well, if you didn’t know already: it is a fake. The NSEA simply doesn’t exist. But this slide seems to make the point there is value in chasing to secure a sale. … Read the rest