Tip of the Month
The IMPAX Tip of the Month is written for business development professionals who have learned and are implementing the IMPAX Process (in the form of IMPAX Strategic Account Sales Process, IMPAX Superior Account Management Process and IMPAX Strategic Inside Sales Process, among others). These Tips deal with subjects including Research, Communication and Presentation. For more Tips on dealing with Procurement, interviewing, relationship development, effective presentation delivery and much more, see the Tip of the Month archive and our book, Beyond Selling Value.
Acting with Intent, Part 2
In the last Tip, we reflected on the importance of developing “Coaches” in our sales and relationship management activities, and said that we are much more likely to be successful in this effort if we are putting a plan in place (rather than relying on hope or intuition). Here are a couple of things to include in a coach network development plan:
Networking – identifying more people who could be potential coaches. Ask yourself:
- Who do I know at the customer?
- Who do I know who might know someone at the customer?
- Who do I know who doesn’t work at the customer but still knows them well?
Think of filling the coach funnel the same way you fill the sales funnel. We need to add names, and then we’ll qualify them. Where to find the names?
- Your current contacts and coaches
- Your personal and professional network
Don’t limit your pool of candidates to people who work in the departments you sell to. Look further out in the company and even outside the company. As examples, find other people who sell to the company and find people who sell for the company. Sometimes the best coaches come from unexpected places.
Research meetings – conducting interviews (not sales calls) with potential coaches. In these meetings the intent is twofold—to learn more about the company and to develop a relationship. This is how we qualify the names in the funnel. Take an interest in them, ask good questions, listen well, and figure out ways you could help them win.
As you consider and develop this plan, don’t underestimate the importance of coaches. As many of you have found, there is a direct correlation between the strength of coach relationships/networks, and sales success. Simply said, the stronger the coach network, the better the sales results.
Every month IMPAX provides thousands of sales and account management professionals with a thought leading Tip of the Month. These tips support and expound on the IMPAX Process by addressing topics such as executive presentation delivery skills, powerful gatekeeper strategies and compelling interviewing techniques.
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