When a sales cycle shortens from six months down to three weeks and sales numbers increase suddenly, people are going to take notice.
This is what was rumored to be happening in Southern California. A relatively new Associate Director of a Small Business Team in Los Angeles that had been struggling was suddenly blowing numbers out of the water.
Beginning in October of that year, the AD saw his two SMB teams in Los Angeles struggling to perform. Their numbers were down and unacceptable to him. So he decided to fix this using AXIOM's Selling Sciences sales process (SSP).
He began using his daily face-to-face meeting with his entire SMB team as an opportunity to coach and practice this sales process. That means that every morning he used his 8:15 team meeting to role-play, coach, practice, and build proficiency in SSP.
Here are a few of the challenges this Associate Director experienced:
- Getting his team to believe that SSP was the right process to bring success.
- Building the belief that customers would participate in the process.
- Having the discipline to buckle down and practice SSP every day.
At first, his team had a very tough time with the process. However, after some time and daily practice, they steadily built proficiency in SSP.
Outside of the team meetings and role-playing, he has also seen strides in how his Business AE's interact with prospects and customers. Their behavior is changing, and so are the results.
Here are the results the SMB team has experienced:
- October: 450 GG
- November: 550 GG
- December: 1000 GG
- January: 1200 GG
December and January's results do not include any huge deals that would skew the numbers. The deals they are closing are typical-sized. However, the team is closing significantly more new logos.
Additionally, the AD reported sizable deals (50-100 lines) that typically took around 6 months to close in the past are now being closed in about 3 weeks.
Using SSP properly has decreased the length of the sales cycle because the customer sees the pain of not having their product and accelerates their customer's urgency to make a change.
From the Horse's Mouth
I asked this AD some questions about his team's success and here's what I learned.
1. What are you doing on your team to get such great results?
"I'm doing nothing special. I'm doing what the trainer for AXIOM told me we needed to do to get the results we were seeking...we simply practice AXIOM every day."
2. What advice would you give your peers?
"The toughest part of implementing this daily routine for my BAEs was the self-discipline to work on this process with them daily."
I am sharing this with you to provide a successful model for you and your team to emulate. If you change the culture of your team, teach them all to speak a common language, and have a shared strategy on a sales call, you'll be able to both shorten the sales cycle and increase sales.
Not only does this improve their sales proficiency in the classroom but more importantly your teams improve their sales proficiency in front of the customer."
Ed McAdoo is a Guest Author for AXIOM. He is a 20 year veteran of the CRM and Sales Enablement industry with experience in a variety of highly successful private and public companies. Ed has worked with CRM systems from Siebel, Oracle, PeopleSoft and Salesforce.com.