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Power of Perspective: Crowdsourced_Blog

  1. CrowdSourcing Perspectives from the Miller Heiman Sales Performance Summit Joe Galvin Chief Research Officer MHI Research Institute Anne Petrik Director of Member Experience MHI Research Institute
  2. Drawing from everything you’ve heard during the Summit, let’s share the best of the best from your perspective.
  3. What are the best practices you are taking back to your organizations to apply immediately?
  4. Let the collaboration begin!
  5. Segmentation is essential…by vertical markets., functional discipline, offering....If you don’t segment, your resources get spread too thin.
  6. Training isn’t just for the sales team. In a team selling environment, everybody needs to understand the process.
  7. Technology is always advancing. It can help drive collaboration across the enterprise.
  8. Know the strength of your sales technologies. Chatter isn’t right for every buyer, stage or opportunity.
  9. In a team-selling environment, everyone’s compensation plans and quotas need to be aligned to the same goals.
  10. Frontline sales managers need to be taught the art of aligning teams.
  11. Leverage your well-respected, top performers to teach everyone how to sell as a team.
  12. If you’re going to sell through teams, assign roles and make sure everyone understands what they are accountable for.
  13. Identify how long opportunities should stay at each stage. Flag opportunities that have gone stale.
  14. The customer experience suffers when opportunities are allowed to go stale.
  15. Collaborate with customers, too. Make them part of your “sales team.”
  16. To maintain momentum and energy, share success stories in a standardized format.
  17. Use the Blue Sheets when preparing the team, especially senior management, to step into an opportunity.
  18. Technology adoption is not a salesperson’s issue. It’s a management/senior leadership issue.
  19. Do quarterly business reviews. Understand your customer’s plans.
  20. Use quarterly business reviews to set expectations with customers. They need to live up to their commitments, too.
  21. You need to measure the cost of your customer relationships. Otherwise, how do you know which are truly your best customers?
  22. All the rules in the world don’t matter if you don’t have guiding principles.
  23. Collaboration 12 Best Practices You Can Start Using Today
  24. Climb to the top of any mountain, and it seems like you can see forever. (On a clear day, at least.) The same is true of the Sales Performance Summit. This year, collaboration was a key theme throughout – both in sessions as well as hallway conversations. Collaboration certainly took center stage at the end of the conference when we asked attendees to share best practices from their own organizations. Here’s just some of what they told us. #1 Segmentation is essential. Segmentation isn’t just a marketing technique. Taking a one-size-fits-all approach to customers doesn’t work. On the other hand, the team’s efforts get spread thin when they are called on to create one-off content and messages that address the needs of specific customers. Segmenting by vertical markets, buyer roles, buying need and other criteria helps sales leaders and supporting functions focus their resources to drive productivity. #2 Sales training isn’t just for sales. If you’re trying to encourage a team-selling environment where sales professionals collaborate with people across the organization, then everybody needs to understand the sales process. By ensuring everyone understands the customer management strategies, you don’t waste time bringing people up to speed on process and terminology. #3 Leverage new technologies. There’s always something new that can help your sales professionals better penetrate accounts, gather intelligence or drive collaboration across the team and with customers. The best sales leaders are always exploring new technologies to discover ways to drive productivity and gain the competitive advantage.
  25. #4 Collaboration requires leadership. Leverage your well-respected top performers by asking them to show others how to work in a collaborative environment. They don’t need to teach a class. Leadership by example works great. Compensation plans and performance metrics also encourage this behavior. #5 Collaboration requires planning. When you assign teams, make sure everyone understands their role. This is especially important when you bring in sales leadership. Since they aren’t normally part of the defined sales process, they need to understand exactly when you need them and what role they need to serve. Remember, they may be in charge of the company, but the sales executive is in charge of the opportunity. #6 Make customers your focus. When your sales professionals visit prospects, do they say “here’s what we do”? Or do they ask questions to understand what’s important to the customer? When done well , customers and sales professionals start to collaborate on defining the solution. #7 Always measure. When an opportunity lingers too long at any particular stage, it isn’t good for funnel health. It can also potentially damage the customer experience. They may want to move forward, but something is holding them back. It’s the job of the sales professional to find a way around the obstacle. If you don’t know how long an opportunity normally remains at each stage of the process, you won’t know when one is stuck.
  26. #8 Tap into the collective wisdom. Individually, a salesperson’s knowledge is limited to his personal experiences. Collectively, you’ll find there is real wisdom in the team. You can leverage that wisdom by grouping sales professionals into teams and having them do account reviews with each other. Not only will they learn from each other, they’ll gain coaching experience. Mix up the teams every six months or so to keep the ideas fresh. #9 Know who’s on your team. In every opportunity, the sales professional needs to know who they will call on for sales support. Briefing team members ahead of time will reduce the number of “audibles,” strategy changes, called in the field. It will also reduce the number of embarrassing fumbles made by team members who haven’t had time to learn the plays. #10 Blue Sheets aren’t just for sales. Each individual on the team, whether they have a “sales role” or not, should review and understand the Miller Heiman Blue and Green Sheets before they take part in an active opportunity. Blue and Green Sheets are the team playbooks.
  27. #11 Technology adoption requires leadership. Technology adoption isn’t a salesperson issue. It’s a management/leadership issue. If your sales team isn’t leveraging the technology, sales leadership needs to do a root cause analysis. More often than not, you’ll discover one of two things: Your customer management strategies aren’t supported by the technology, and it’s getting in the way of selling. Or worse, your sales management is setting a poor example by not using the technology themselves. #12 Focus on the customers that count. You need to measure the ROI of a relationship to know who your best customers are. Some customers will ask for far more value than they return in terms of sales expenses, hand-holding by support resources and a hundred other little things that can add up quickly. No matter how much business a customer brings in, if they cost more than they bring in, they aren’t a customer worth keeping. Like the view from the top of a mountain, this Summit is a truly inspiring and valuable experience. The collective energy generated during this session serves as a great reminder of the benefits of collaboration and why collaboration is a best practice of World-Class Sales Performers.
  28. See you at the 2015 Summit! 2015 MHI Global Sales Performance Summit October 20-21 l Savannah, GA