Crafting a Resonant Sales Symphony: The Power of Clear Objectives and Goals
In the vast ocean of corporate strategy, the sales department functions much like a ship’s heartbeat, rhythmic and essential, setting the pace for the vessel’s journey. But what, or who calibrates this pulse? How do we ensure that this heart doesn’t race uncontrollably or, worse, skip a beat? CEOs and sales managers would concur that the answer is embedded in well-articulated sales objectives and goals. These are not just arbitrary figures or lofty dreams but are methodically set coordinates guiding the trajectory of sales initiatives.
Imagine, if you will, a vast orchestra. Each instrument represents a member of the sales team. The orchestra’s conductor, analogous to a CEO or sales manager, needs well-composed sheet music, sales objectives, and goals to guide the symphony. Without it, the melody could quickly descend into chaos. Now, consider a ship embarking on a voyage. Its captain sets a destination (the sales objective) and interim stops (sales goals) for resource replenishment. This sequential approach ensures the journey remains on track, no matter how tumultuous the seas are.
Such analogies underscore a simple yet often overlooked truth: the nuances between objectives and goals matter. It’s not just a matter of semantics but strategy. Indeed, companies that distinctively lay out both show a staggering 28% improvement in sales team performance. These figures aren’t mere data points but are a testament to the intertwined psychology and methodology behind sales targets.
However, charting this path is not without its challenges. Aiming too high can be as dangerous as setting sights too low. The former can overshadow the team with an impending sense of inaccessibility, making the climb appear insurmountable. On the other hand, the latter risks inducing a sense of complacency, stifling the potential of a talented sales force.
But how does one strike that impeccable balance? The key, I believe, lies at the intersection of retrospection, analysis, and anticipation. A thorough evaluation of past performances acts as a foundation. For instance, projecting a 50% growth based on the previous year’s 15% without significant infrastructural changes might lean towards fantasy. Furthermore, a finger on the pulse of market trends helps set realistic ambitions. Resources, often a limiting factor, need to be meticulously assessed. Remember, monumental objectives warrant monumental resource allocations. A CEO’s arsenal should also incorporate frontline feedback, an often underutilized yet invaluable asset. And as the sands of the marketplace continually shift, maintaining flexibility in these objectives and goals is paramount.
These defined objectives and goals do more than merely set targets. They breathe life into the organization. They synergize scattered efforts, fostering a culture where ambition thrives, and accountability is cherished. It transforms every deal, every pitch into a cog in the grand machinery of corporate growth.
Setting clear sales objectives and goals is akin to crafting a masterpiece symphony. Each chord, each note, when harmonized, weaves an enchanting melody. CEOs and sales managers, as the chief architects of their organizations, possess the potential to orchestrate this. And in the dynamic dance of sales, where the only constant is change, these well-defined objectives and goals don’t just serve as a compass—they become the essence of the journey. Because the goal, after all, is not just to increase sales but to understand the depth, the method, and the purpose behind it.
Welcome to another episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales with your hosts, Kevin Lawson and Sean O’Shaughnessey. In this riveting episode, we take a deep dive into the often talked about but seldom mastered topic: Buyer Personas. Whether you’re listening on a Tuesday drive back home or on a Wednesday morning commute to work, this episode is packed with actionable insights to set you up for the rest of your week, month, and quarter. Tune in to find out how to create accurate buyer personas that can help you make smarter sales and marketing decisions.
📝 Key Topics Discussed:
Defining Buyer Personas: Kevin and Sean explore what a buyer persona really is and why it’s crucial for sales success.
The Importance of SWOT Analysis: Kevin explains that creating a buyer persona isn’t a one-off task; it begins with understanding your SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis.
Ideal Client Profiles & Unique Selling Proposition: Why understanding these can help fine-tune your buyer personas.
Digging into Demographics and Psychographics: How to gather and utilize this data to develop detailed buyer personas.
Quarterly Business Reviews (QBRs): Sean shares insights into who should be involved in these reviews and the type of questions that can help enrich your buyer personas.
🗨️ Key Quotes:
“If you’re out there and wondering how to get this process started, thinking that you’ve already done a SWOT analysis…now’s the time to talk about buyer personas.” – Kevin Lawson
“Salespeople are valuable. Salespeople are important to the sales process. And it is your job to teach your company about your customers.” – Sean O’Shaughnessey
“Salespeople are great people day in day out. We shouldn’t have to pay a tax because of bad salespeople doing bad things in the marketplace.” – Kevin Lawson
Crafting an accurate and effective buyer persona isn’t just a task; it’s an art. This episode provides not only the theory but also the actionable steps you can take to create buyer personas that resonate with your target market. From initial concepts to understanding your customer needs during a QBR, Kevin and Sean have packed this episode with tools you can use immediately. Listen now to avoid the pitfalls and fast-track your way to sales success.
Ready to revolutionize your sales approach? Hit that download button and tune in now! 🎧
Dive deep into the world of competitive analysis with Kevin Lawson and Sean O’Shaughnessey in this engaging episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales. In the fast-paced world of sales, it’s not just about knowing your product, but about understanding your competition, your customers, and the nuances that drive decisions. Let Kevin and Sean guide you through actionable insights to elevate your sales game.
Key Topics Discussed:
The Power of Competitive Analysis: Unlock the benefits of understanding your competition and how it empowers you as a sales leader.
Understanding ‘No Decision’: Learn why some prospects choose to remain indecisive and how you can navigate this challenge effectively.
The Role of SWOT in Sales: Deciphering how SWOT, PESTEL, and SOAR analyses can help shape your sales strategies.
Unpacking Unique Selling Proposition (USP): Knowing your USP and leveraging it against your competitors is important.
Importance of Feedback in Pricing: Sean emphasizes the need for real-time feedback, especially when your price points are met with resistance.
The Salesperson as a Guide: The role of a salesperson is to guide clients, understand their needs, and sell existing products confidently.
Kevin: “No decision comes, in my opinion, when you haven’t done a good job qualifying the prospect.”
Sean: “Looking at companies that are massively successful… It’s just a good way for a company to get better. Looking at those people and learning from them is really, really important.”
Kevin: “If you’ve already thought through how they measure value, you know how to talk to them. You become a better salesperson because you put in the work.”
Sean: “Your job is to sell the product that exists today, not the product that you wish they would hurry up and build.”
Summary: In the competitive realm of sales, it’s not just about standing out, but about understanding every piece of the puzzle. Whether it’s diving deep into SWOT analyses, ensuring that your pricing strategy aligns with market expectations, or guiding your client toward a mutually beneficial decision, every step matters. Join Kevin and Sean as they unpack these topics and more, providing you with actionable strategies to ensure your sales pitch stands out. If you’re serious about mastering the art of sales, this is an episode you won’t want to miss. Dive in now!
Get ready to unlock the secrets of mastering the sales game with Two Tall Guys Talking Sales! This episode delves into the nuances of key performance indicators (KPIs), their significance in measuring sales efficiency, and the art of mentorship among salespeople. Listen as our hosts Sean and Kevin uncover the analogy of KPIs and share insights about setting the right measures for salespeople at various career stages.
Key Topics Discussed:
Understanding Leading vs. Lagging Indicators: Foreseeing future trends and not just measuring past achievements is important.
KPIs and the Marriage Analogy: Setting the right measures to cultivate relationships, just as one nurtures a romantic relationship.
Differentiating KPIs for New vs. Veteran Salespeople: Tailoring strategies for those new to the profession, the company, or the industry.
The Power of Mentorship: Leveraging the experiences of veteran salespeople and fostering growth among younger salespeople.
Sales Training and Coaching: How combining formal sales training with hands-on coaching can amplify results.
Kevin: “KPIs are not about only the number of deals you sold. It’s about, ‘Am I doing the right behaviors over time?'”
Sean: “Those KPIs can’t be a hundred percent looking backward. We need to look ahead and say, what are we doing to generate business?”
Kevin: “Activity measures for new salespeople are different. I’m talking about doing the well-researched, planned prospecting call.”
Sean: “The real advantage of The RAIN Group is its training combined with my coaching.”
With a blend of engaging analogies, actionable insights, and personal experiences, Sean and Kevin illuminate the complex world of sales KPIs. Whether you’re a seasoned salesperson or just beginning your journey, this episode is packed with nuggets of wisdom that can transform your approach to sales. Dive deep into the essence of mentorship, discover the right measures for tracking success, and unearth the significance of forward-looking indicators. Don’t miss out on this chance to elevate your sales strategies and metrics. Listen now and redefine your sales mastery with Two Tall Guys Talking Sales!
Bob Robinson, Jr., and his mechanical-engineer father, Bob Robinson, Sr., came up with the idea for a product the world truly needed 25 years ago: a “no-touch” restroom cleaning machine. Their company, Kaivac, is a Hamilton, OH-based manufacturer of cleaning machines. Hamilton is a suburb of Cincinnati, OH.
“We were on our hands and knees, crawling around the bathroom,” recalls Bob, Jr. “It was disgusting. We said, ‘There’s got to be a better way.'”
Through hard work and dedication, the Robinsons created the KaiVac to help solve that initial problem in public restrooms. Over the years, they grew the idea to create dedicated machines to clean kitchen floors, hallway floors, and grocery displays. Beyond its bathroom cleaning technology, it has expanded into floor cleaning and spill response machines and has 18 patents with 16 pending.
Along with growing their manufacturing capabilities, they also grew their sales capabilities. They adopted a hybrid strategy of selling through distribution and selling directly to key customers. Their direct team, under the leadership of Bob Robinson, Jr., who had taken on the role of VP of Sales, closed many enviable customers with massive deals, including Walmart, Kroger, and Target.
They realized that they needed to step up their sales professionalism after having a down year during COVID after having a record-breaking year the year before. They wanted to grow to $75 million in annual revenue within three years and a Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG) of $1 billion in annual revenue within 20 years.
Bob Jr. says Kaivac is just getting started. “At 20 to 25 years in business, you’re at an inflection point where you’ve got resources, tenure, and history and have been through ‘adolescence,'” he says. “Now is the chance to build a professionalized organization.”
They contacted New Sales Expert LLC as the nation was coming out of the global pandemic, but before all the supply chain problems had paused. New Sales Expert LLC is a fractional vice president of sales consultancy. Sean O’Shaughnessey, the CEO of New Sales Expert, is aligned with SalesXceleration and has 38 years of experience in sales and sales management.
According to Sean, “Kaivac is a joy to work with. They are the shining star of Hamilton, OH, and Butler County. They had so much raw potential when I walked in the door; all I had to do was to focus their energy and enthusiasm on working smarter and just a little harder.”
Building an organization with a heart
Kaivac had a great culture to build on to make a great sales culture. Before Sean showed up, the company leadership had already developed their One-Page Strategic Plan and their “Why?” statement that reflects the owners’ Christian faith: “To glorify God by using KAIVAC as an instrument for Good.”
In addition to the “Why?” statement, they had drafted an acronym called FIGS that conveys the “heart” of the company. FIGS—which appears on signs that hang on the factory floor and in break rooms—stands for
F: “First shall be last, last shall be first.”
I: Integrity—as in “The truth shall set you free.”
G: Golden Rule—meaning “treat others how you want to be treated.”
S: Servant’s Heart, as in “We are in a race to help people.”
The company uses the first three letters of its name–KAI–to inspire the team’s thinking and actions. These letters stand for inspiring phrases such as: “Keep At It,” “Keep Always Improving,” “Keep Attempting the Impossible,” and “(creates) Kick-Ass Inventions.”
Prioritizing net income and growth
Sean’s first change was to make a compensation plan that motivated the sales team to sell bigger deals and to sell them quickly. Kaivac implemented a 50/50 plan in concert with defined territories to keep the Key Account salespeople focused on the goal of more significant and profitable orders.
After the motivation component was in place, it was time to help the team learn how to sell big deals more repeatedly. The big deals of the past had been challenging to work on and, while very profitable, had been disruptive to close. Sean encouraged the company to read John McMahon’s book, “The Qualified Sales Leader,” and with that tome as inspiration, quickly deployed MEDDPICCC to help them qualify deals.
MEDDPICCC by itself is not enough. The company had already licensed Salesforce, one of the highest-rated CRMs on the market, but Sean put MEDDPICCC into the various stages of the sales process to ensure that the salespeople knew all the required information about a big deal. Sean also created dashboards within Salesforce to track deal progress at the management level. The company implemented Sales Plans for Key Accounts and the Power Matrix to document the most influential people in the customer’s decision-making process.
The very first big deals that the company found after Sean started to help them also benefited from the Decision Timeline. The Decision Timeline is a tool to allow the sales team to walk through the entire decision-making process of the customer to understand all of the steps required to make a significant investment decision. It allowed frank and honest conversations to take place with the prospect as the team worked to close the largest deal in the company’s history to date.
Time to run on their own
As with most of the assignments with New Sales Expert, LLC, the goal is to allow the company to run independently. Bob Robinson Jr. was the company’s VP of Sales. Still, he needed to shed those responsibilities to help run the entire company. To finish the transition, Bob and three of his leaders took SalesXceleration‘s Certified Sales Leadership course delivered by Sean O’Shaughnessey.
The Certified Sales Leader (CSL) designation is the country’s most comprehensive sales leadership certification program offered. CSL leadership training and certification will prepare you with the analytical, tactical, and strategic sales management skills needed to drive revenue growth now…and into the future. CSL training expands the skill set of a Sales Manager by providing coaching, techniques, and tools to lead a successful sales team.
All four Kaivac leaders passed the CSL test. One of them, Mike Perazzo, was tagged to take over as Executive Vice President of Sales. According to Mike, “Sean is a master coach for helping shape sales process and methodology. Following his methods will help grow sales faster, transactionally, and strategically. Often a couple of pieces of the puzzle are missing, and Sean helps quickly identify them.
You have everything to gain by having Sean look at your current approach. He is a change agent and disruptive to the status quo. Pushing the pace and flow of deals is his sweet spot. I am a better sales leader because of my time with him.”
Sean O’Shaughnessey of New Sales Expert, LLC states, “Kaivac is a wonderful company. They have created a line of machines that gives pride to the workers in one of the toughest jobs in America – keeping things clean. They are focused on the success of their customers and their employees. They had all of the raw skills within their sales team to be a great sales organization; they only needed me to focus them on activities and techniques that allowed them to close bigger deals faster and at a higher profit level.”
“If anyone works in a clean building with clean restrooms and hard surface floors, they are either cleaning it with Kaivac technology or paying too much for that cleanliness,” Sean explains.
Revenue and profitability have grown since Sean helped Kaivac develop a higher level of sales professionalism. Recent results have shown a dramatic increase in revenue and profitability. The sales and revenue growth have allowed the entire family of Kaivac to prosper. The Robinsons have always considered their employees an extension of their family. The company’s prosperity is passed along to team members through a bonus structure for the whole company. It all fits into the spirit of Kaivac. Bob Jr. says, “Our organization was built to have heart.”
In this episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales, hosts Kevin Lawson and Sean O’Shaughnessey delve deep into the salesperson’s value in the modern sales process. Our hosts discuss how the salesperson’s role has evolved with the advent of the internet and the importance of building trust with potential buyers. They also talk about redefining buyer needs and how to differentiate your product or service in the market.
Key Topics Discussed
The Salesperson as a Value Carrier: With a wealth of information available online, the salesperson’s role is to add value to a buyer’s perceived problem.
The Importance of Trust: Building and transferring trust from the seller to the buyer is the essence of a successful sale.
Unique Selling Propositions: Every salesperson has a unique aspect of their product, their company, and themselves.
Redefining Buyer Problems: It’s important for the salesperson to understand the root cause of the buyer’s problem to provide a tailored solution.
Ask Better Questions: To create value separation and reframe buyer problems, salespeople need to ask insightful questions.
From Sean: “Sales is nothing more than the transfer of trust from me because I trust my product… Transferring that trust to the buyer and having the buyer then have that trust that I can actually solve the problem that’s at hand is what sales is all about.”
From Kevin: “The salesperson and sales leader, their whole job is to become the differentiators. The salesperson has to become that value. And it’s not just a value of, ‘Hey, I’m different. Hey, I’m cheaper.’ We’re not competing on price here; we’re competing on actual customer-facing value.”
In the age of readily available online information, a salesperson’s job is no longer just about conveying product details. It’s about building trust, understanding the root of the customer’s problem, and providing them with unique solutions. Join Kevin and Sean in this enlightening episode as they redefine the role of the modern salesperson and provide actionable insights to excel in the evolving sales landscape. If you’re ready to take your sales skills to the next level, this episode is a must-listen. Remember, sales success is not just about selling a product but also about being the value a buyer seeks.
In the intricate and often unpredictable world of B2B sales, two terms frequently arise: “Champions” and “Coaches.” While somewhat similar, these labels correspond to entirely distinct roles in the sales process. Each plays a vital part, yet misinterpreting or misusing these roles can lead to the loss of your sales opportunity. Many experts believe that believing you have a Champion when you only have a Coach is the biggest problem in long-running sales campaigns.
This article aims to delve deeper into the specific role of the Champion, introduce an innovative strategy known as “Champion Chess,” and illustrate how these elements can transform your B2B sales approach for the better.
Coaches and Champions are both part of the Opportunity Qualification system known as MEDDPICCC. MEDDPICCC stands for
M – Metrics
E – Economic Buyer
D – Decision Criteria
D – Decision Process
P – Paperwork Process
I – Identification of Goal
C – Coach
C – Champion
C – Competition
Deep Dive into the Role of Champions
In the sales universe, a Champion isn’t merely a supporter of your business or service; they actively advocate for your product or service within their organization. Champions usually occupy a strategic position within their company, influencing decision-making processes that can make or break your sales success.
The power of a Champion in the sales process is remarkable. They can effectively expedite sales cycles by persuading their organization of your product’s value, thus overcoming internal objections and resistance. Their advocacy of your solution goes beyond the superficial – they believe in your product’s merit and fight for its adoption and success within their organization. These qualities make Champions an invaluable asset and integral to any successful B2B sales strategy.
Every successful sales process relies on a deep understanding of the many moving parts within the targeted organization. Key among these are the internal influencers who can significantly shape the trajectory of your sales campaign. In the realm of sales, two roles stand out: ‘Coaches’ and ‘Champions.’ Both can impact your process differently, so a firm grasp on who they are, what they do, and how to engage with them can be pivotal for your sales success.
MEDDPICCC is an evolution of the MEDDIC sales qualification methodology that’s proven to be particularly effective for B2B enterprise sales organizations. At its core, the MEDDPICCC methodology aids organizations in ensuring they are working on the right deals and concentrating their efforts effectively to secure wins.
MEDDPICCC extends the MEDDIC acronym to include an additional ‘P’ for Paper Process, ‘C’ for Competition, and ‘C’ for Coach. The inclusion of the ‘Paper Process’ reflects the increased complexity in technology purchasing compared to the past. Factors such as the shift from perpetual licenses to subscription agreements and enhanced data security and privacy requirements have intensified the contractual obligations between vendor and customer. Consequently, the ‘Paper Process’ has emerged as a significant factor influencing sellers’ forecasts, warranting its inclusion in the methodology.
The second addition, ‘Competition,’ acknowledges the intensified competitive landscape in the current era. Competition can come from various sources: new companies emerging rapidly with the help of modern technology, other vendors vying for the same budget and resources, potential in-house solutions, or the choice to maintain the status quo. Understanding and navigating these competitive elements are critical to a seller’s forecast accuracy and deal success, thus necessitating the inclusion of ‘Competition’ in MEDDPICCC.
The third addition to MEDDPICCC is ‘Coach,’ and it is added to understand that there are frequently those people in an organization that will give you knowledge and advice about the sales opportunity, but they do not rise to the level of a Champion. One of the biggest mistakes a salesperson can make is confusing a Coach with a Champion. They may be your advocate and are pushing your product or service to other influencers in the account, but don’t let that confuse you. Without true power and the ability to sway the final decision with the Economic Buyer, you merely have an influencer. Let’s make no mistake; a Coach is also very important in a deal. They are a “guide” that you typically have more access to and can generate imperative touchpoints that help keep the deal moving forward.
In essence, MEDDPICCC is a comprehensive, strategic framework that equips sales teams with the necessary tools and insights to identify and pursue the most promising opportunities effectively, navigate the intricate contractual landscape, and outperform the competition. By adopting and mastering the MEDDPICCC methodology, less experienced salespeople can enhance their sales performance and contribute significantly to their organization’s success.
In this episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales, Sean O’Shaughnessey and Kevin Lawson discuss the importance of standing out and differentiating oneself in the competitive world of sales. They explore how salespeople can escape the commodity mindset and become trusted advisors to their clients, ultimately leading to more money and success.
Key takeaways from the episode include:
The importance of differentiating oneself in the sales process
Understanding and embracing the role of an expert in your field
“The Challenger Sale” book’s approach, and its impact on sales success
The dangers of proposing too early and devaluing your offering
Creating value for your clients by helping them be successful
Evaluating and improving your sales pipeline to increase revenue
The hosts also mention insightful books and previous podcast guests, such as Kelly Crandall and Jim Hardwick (both Fractional Sales VPs aligned with Sales Xceleration), who provide valuable perspectives on sales and leadership.
Sean and Kevin encourage our listeners to reach out with any questions or topics they would like to see covered in future episodes.
Don’t miss this episode full of practical advice and insights on improving your sales game, adding value to your clients, and ultimately making more money. Listen now to learn from the experts, and start transforming your sales approach today!