How do you make sure the roll-out of your sales process sticks?  Phase 3 of my Proven Process is all about that. 

I kicked off Phase 3 with a client this week by asking the sales team what process steps, messaging tools, or disciplines that we rolled out in phase 2 have already made an impact.  I ask them to take a minute to jot down whatever comes into their head. 

Yes, I start a timer.  

I am not looking for an exhaustive list just the first couple things that come to mind.   

I then go around the “Zoom” room asking what they wrote.  This ensures no one just replies, “same as her” or “what he said.”  I merely ask, “what did you write down?”  Here’s a word cloud showing the result from earlier this week:

I then ask for particular episodes or stories that back up their called-out item.  Asking – 

“What do you mean by that?”

“What happened?”

This is a fun exercise that accomplishes a lot.  Believe it or not, sales people like to brag about themselves. 😉. By socializing what’s working, individuals within the group can hear about what’s recently working for others that wasn’t before and where their peers are seeing improvement.  

This facilitation trick leads to further illumination on what can move stuck opportunities or enhance the probability of success within their individual pipelines.  The sharing also promotes a culture of celebrating success, even small things like being able to move a deal along to a next stage. 

About that above word-cloud.  You may be thinking, “What’s up with proposals?”

During my engagements, we spend a lot of time working on how proposals fit into the overall sales process.  

Some sellers over propose. 

Some propose prematurely. 

Some propose and are clueless about what their prospects are going to do with that proposal.  

And then there’s the ghosting – we discuss what to do with those prospects who ghost sellers after receiving a proposal leaving the seller in the dark.  

Something else is interesting about this word-cloud. During my personal sales cycles with sales and other executive leadership, I’ll ask, 

What percentage of your sales team or even customer-facing personnel do you worry –

  • speak too fast?
  • don’t ask enough questions?
  • have proposals that aren’t closing?
  • can’t tell a great success story? or 
  • don’t have a next call already scheduled with their prospects?”

Regularly, they reply, 

I don’t know and that’s a problem.”

How about you?  Does the word-cloud hit close to home? 

SalesReformSchool: Food for Thought

The fantastic Marketer Sue Silva posted this astounding list of 99+ Mind-Blowing Digital Marketing Statistics (2023).  This one caught my eye:   

According to IBM, 49% of all emails are opened on mobile devices.   

When you write those important sales emails, are you considering how it’s going to look on a mobile phone? For me, this means the first rule of biz emails is to ignore the 3-4 sentences per paragraph rule. 

Instead, consider blocking your content into smaller chunks.  And use bullets and lists more so than ever. 

I’ve tried to do that with this post. 

SalesReformSchool: Extracurricular

ChatGPT and its competitors are all the rage.  This tweet is incredibly useful.

Good Selling!