I get great fun from writing this blog, I have the opportunity to share things I see and work with in the real world with real sales teams and people. A big thrill for me is when I realize that people are reading and getting something out of the posts.
Not only that, but we have entered the age of Democracy 2.0, you can vote once every day between now and the time the poll closes December 13, 2013.
So every time you read a post, vote, if you are a manager, have your entire team vote, if you are a teacher, the whole class; Barack, here is a chance to bring together votes on both sides of the isle.
Hey, some of you voted for Rob Ford, how bad would it be to vote for me.
This is the last week for voting in The Sales Lead Management Association’s 50 Most Influential Sales Lead Management for 2012, and as you may be aware I am one of the nominees. I am once again asking for your vote if you have not yet done so. BTW, if you have – Thank You!
It only takes a minute, but the impact is forever, or at least until next year at this time. Whether you miss voting since the big day earlier in the month, or if you did not vote November 6, and now feel you have not done your civic duty, here is your chance to take the edge of the guilt and vote. You can vote for me Tibor Shanto, and two other worthy leaders, or you can just vote for me, up to you, so long as you vote for me. (Too much? )
I want to thank you all for voting, especially those who voted for me.
The Sales Lead Management Association has the mission of helping companies become more successful in the critical business process of managing sales leads. This critical aspect of sales success has always been core to Renbor success and to the work we deliver for our clients.
The great thing about sales is the variety of methods and processes available to sales professionals, and while there may not be one definitive means of improving sales, there are a number of great resources, advisers, blogs and personalities and books available to those who want to improve.
Now there is an opportunity for some of these people to be recognized, Top Sales World is presenting the first Annual Top Sales Award. Categories include Top Sales Personality, Top Sales Book, Top Sales Article, Top Sales Star, Top Sales Blog, Top Sales Resource Site, Top Sales 2.0 Solution, Top Sales Tool, Top Social Media Site, Top CRM Solution.
You are all invited to join us for a FREE webinar this afternoon at 1:00 pm eastern, when the Top Sales Experts Masterclass series presents “An Inconvenient Truce”. The webinar is a Tongue-in-cheek and irreverent look at how traditional sales techniques and Sales 2.0 tools can and should work together throughout the sales process rather than just fight for bragging rights in prospecting.
You still have time to register and join in, comment, socialize and maybe take something away in the process.
We are also excited about the upcoming broadcast of a programme by our friend Peter Cook, author of Sex, Leadership And Rock N’ Roll: Leadership Lessons from the Academy of Rock. The programme is part of BBC Radio 4 IN BUSINESS series. It will broadcasts on Thursday 17th December, at 20.30 GMT, and again on Sunday December 20th 21.30 GMT then on the World Service about 8 times shortly after.
If you are not in the UK, no worries, you can catch Peter’s broadcast at www.bbc.co.uk/radio4 and then follow the link to In Business. This is something you don’t want to miss.
The monthly edition of The Pipeline is out today, and we look at how to best attack selling in 2010. 254 selling days, 2540 hours, how will you use that time? What if each hour equalled $100, how would you invest $254,000 to earn maximum returns on your investment: Time – Activities – Sales?
Back in September, with your vote and support, one of my articles was voted article of the month at Top 10 Sales Articles. As a result that same article is now a finalist for article of the year, and again I am asking you to support me and democracy around the planet. Being a true democrat, I encourage you to vote right away and vote often. If there are those who would squander their vote and democratic duty, it is up to you to make up for it. Tell your friends, neighbours, colleagues, golf pros and their mistresses, and show the world how the readers of The Pipeline execute when given the opportunity.
Again, here is where you can vote, do it now, and every morning between now and December 21. Remember a vote for my article is a vote for sales freedom!
Well the period for submissions for our current sales contest has now closed, and we are pleased to present all the potential solutions suggested. Those of you who read the contest rules, know that we will now open the voting for a week, voting will close midnight Eastern time on Saturday October 24, 2009. We invite everyone to vote, and you know we are not dogmatic or particular about democracy, if you want to vote more than once for yourself or someone you like, or owe money to, hey go for it.
Those participants with entries, now is the time to spread the word and GET YOUR friends, families, Rabbis, Ministers, everyone TO VOTE FOR YOUR SUBMISSION BELOW. You and your posse can vote in the poll box below.
Remember to also submit your solution as a comment below as well as on your blog, or Facebook, or Twitter, web site, LinkedIn update, or other social type outlets, including this link back to www.soyouthinqcansell.com. Again the winner that is the submission with greatest number of votes will win a free Pipeline Audit, a key component of the Sales Process Audit offered by Renbor Sales Solutions and Compass North Inc.
No one actually hit on the actual solution the team used, we will reveal that after the winner has been announced, but some came close, so we may yet award a second prize.
Let the voting begin, may the best solution gat the most votes.
I claim an honorary prize based only on the title of my latest book:
“Sex, Leadership and Rock’n’Roll – Leadership Lessons from the Academy of Rock”
Acclaimed by Tom Peters:
“Sex, Leadership and Rock ‘n’ Roll is a marvellous book, which closes the door on the tidy, hierarchical, know-your-place ‘Orchestral Age’ and ushers in a new, creative era of challenge and change. Hooray!”
Get your sponsors and the DSS in one room and for a final ppt. Make sure that you feed the DSS that he can make the difference and blow you out of the water at that meeting by faking weaknesses. Then he will show up for sure.
At the meeting start up the round table discussion and get the DSS to answer last (table settings). Your supporters from within the company get to answer first and speak their mind. The DSS will have to go up to his own co workers based on none arguments and he will have to give in to not loose face. This will take him out of the DMU he will not want that. Make sure your meeting is on neutral ground and that dinner is after the meeting. So they can sit on it for a while. Nobody wants to loose face before his coworkers and you can be neutral cause it were not your arguments in the discussion but his own companies. This way you can still work with him after.
I think the team should involve some executives from their company and get them to reach out to their counterparts on the buyer’s side. This may open up a dialogue at higher levels that would allow others to see the benefits of the teams offering. The DSS may back off if he saw the CEO of his own company get involved.
If on the other hand this tactic does not work, the team has plausible deniability if the DSS finds out, and let’s face it he is not the biggest fan right now as it is.
My suggestion is go high and change the stakes for everyone.
Get to the source of the problem.
The problem is the understanding, knowledge, or perception of the DSS.
Have the sales team leader confront the issue face to face with the DSS privately, and honestly, make a persoanl and emotional connection wiht the DSS, to ascertain the root cause of his perception and (mis) understanding.
Address these matters- and you may be surprised at the result. It you get blown out – then screw it- at least you know honestly why you were blown out. And if it was unethical make their CEO/Board aware of it after the fact.
You’re smarter, learn from it, and live to fight another day. And go support their competitor with the best pricing and service you can deliver.
Your team has nothing to lose by being more aggressive.
I would recommend a high level executive at our team’s company contact the CEO at the prospect company for a one-on-one meeting.
I would have our high level executive discuss the issue at hand and the key reasons we should be considered to compete.
I would then have our high level executive request advice on how our team should proceed.
Approach the DSS with an offer of employment as a consultant at your company. Make it an offer he can not refuse. His first job is to get the contract with his former company.
It appears that the DSS has no reason to give the business to your sales team other than dislike. He hasn’t appeared to give any reasons why he will not buy from you.
I would begin by extending an invitation for the DSS and other executive members to visit your company/factory to tour your facility, the product, customer service teams.etc…
Let them become comfortable with your business and what you have to offer, then discuss the barriers and seek answers and respond appropriately.
It may be that the DSS has the type of personality that needs to be “wined and dined”
You could bring in a common link to the DSS – a sourcing advisory or a partner firm which has better connects with the DSS. They could work as a mediator or the partner could front end the deal with your firm as sub-contractors.
Probably a joint conference/ meeting as next step including the mediator, sales team & DSS could help sort out any issues & open the iron gate.
Pretty simple really – we face these kinda situations on a daily basis.
Get the guy some carrots – percentage on the sale, full time employment with my firm at double the current paycheck, awesome holiday in the Caribbean, sweet nothings as gifts, a luxurious spa date with some of the hottest women money can hire, etc.
But the carrots are like trump cards for me – i’m going to use them one at a time. And there will obviously be the ‘demarcation line’ from which point onwards the deal becomes a loss for me. I will make sure I tell the DSS this the first time we meet.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
Wage war on all fronts. Set the strategy and employ tactics to meet the goal. “Knowledge is Power,” Plato said. Irrespective of the DSS’s reasons, you are in sales. Make it happen!
I would cold call and establish a conversations with the CEO, board members, and probe for insights with colleagues whom may not participate on the board, but can offer insight from a department perspective. * I might start with the little guys whom have no input on the board, but can offer insights that the CEO himself may have interests in knowing… a good captivator on a cold call!
It’s your job as a convincing salesman to win the respect and trust of those you call on.
Probing via cold calling, aka, waging war on all fronts, talk to anyone you can talk to.
“Hey Joe, I know you’re not on the board, I know you hate your current infrastructure and want to improve, tell me what you thinking/feeling?, we don’t have to acknowledge we ever spoke. I’m trying to learn why the DSS, and the board are behaving as they are, what is the perception you have of what’s going on?” This might work, if it doesn’t you move forward until you get your foot in the crack of the door with someone whom offers insight…knowledge….power to enlist the next proper tactic..
Based on how much I can learn cold calling into the account in 1 week, I would engineer a meeting between higher brass on both sides. I would amass as much information learning what the concerns are before going in with a PPT, or tactical strategy, that way you have a plan that addresses the challenge, “no communication from the DSS or his company.
At a committee meeting:
I would ask for input via round table discussion, personal introductions and concerns of each attending member. Create dialouge to uncover the champions within the group whom understand our value proposition and support the alliance with our team. Obtain the internal champions emails. At the same time, uncover alliances with the DSS.
In the end, carrots or consulting positions are far fetched for most companies. Wining and Dining is a social primer to connect on personal levels and a must. TCO/ROI is key. It’s all about communication. Do you understand our value proposition over our competitors? Do you understand whom we have worked with in your associated industry?(Get a champion whom is thier competitor to offer a conversation with the CEO or board).
When will you be issuing the PO? How high is this solution needed on your priority list Mr. CEO, Board Members, and DSS? Do you know your competitors are enlisting our solutions while your considering a change? Check out thier ROI…
It’s all psychology. The DSS could be an egomaniac, or have direction from the CEO to be the gatekeeper. Nevertheless, it’s all about communication, tactics and stratigize. No one can ever have a full proof plan, unless they “know,” the variables involved in the equation.
Wage war on all fronts!
Here’s the bold, creative plan: Give the DSS all the credit for coming up with the awesome proposal you’ve created.
Give him the kudos for forcing you to dig deep to come up with the exhaustive, detailed bid that satisfies every degree of what you’re looking to accomplish. “We don’t normally go to these extremes to create a proposal,” you say. “If it wasn’t for Mr. DSS here, you never would have seen this kind of detail, this kind of scrutiny on ROI, and certainly this kind of aggressive pricing. Our hats off to you, Mr. DSS; you’re an asset to your organization, and you’ve singlehandedly changed the way we’ll be submitting RFP’s in the future.”
And the presentation begins.
You’ve complimented him on the very thing that made it difficult for you in the first place, bolstered his reputation among his peers, and got the deal. Way to go! Cigars all around.
(And you didn’t have to resort to illegal activities, or worse yet, have to HIRE the guy!)
This problem should be confronted making it obvious that the DSS is not considering our offer in an appropriate manner. Yet we have to take care not to upset him in any way that the results are worse. In other words, put the DSS in a position that he has no choice but to agree that our solution is the best and gains the trust of the board and executives.
A presentation should be organized, outside of their offices, and it should include as many of the members of the prospect’s board of directors as possible, C-Level executives and the DSS
The presentation provides all the details of our solution, why it is the best solution, and addresses all of the possible objectives. If possible, a high level executive from an existing client should be present to endorse our solution.
The objective is to gain the buy in of the executive board, thereby leaving the DSS no choice but to side with the board and executives.
The problem with the DSS is his unwarranted dislike for the prospective bidding company and he must be removed from the approval process. At this point in the game the company has nothing to lose therefore should attempt to hire him away from his current position and make an offer he can’t refuse with the bidding company, therefore eliminating him from the approval process. Given the size of the deal, it would be more than affordable to hire him away.