Another Forecast Spreadsheet

One of my customers shared with me the parallel reporting that has since resoundingly taken the place of their ditched Goldmine crm.  It’s a single worksheet they call the Schiffman Board.  It seems that with usage of Goldmine having tailed off to practically no use at all, a new Manager (an American emigré) introduced this spreadsheet.

Web surfing doesn’t shed much light on its origins, although a New Yorker with decades of sales support appears the front runner.

The good news for those exasperated with crm, and bad news for those who promote its use, is that this team appear to fill-in their ‘Board’ and email updates to the Boss on a weekly basis with little grudge.  One fella even boasts how it’s improved his forecasting accuracy to such an extent that he’s only a couple of hundred quid out each month.

The spreadsheet has five areas to input:

  • 1st Appointments
  • 10% close chance
  • 50%
  • 90%
  • Closed

A cheeky macro then populates a trio of forecast figures multiplying the percentage by the deal values; Realistic, Midrange & Longshot.

Whether the probablities chosen are from Mr Schiffman’s recommendation or the team’s boss is unknown.  What I feel is critical to its usage though, is the clarity that is given to the thresholds that must be crossed to progress from first appointment through to close.

In this case, after your initial meeting you must have an agreed Needs Analysis to earn a 10% chance.  Then a Trial with an agreed feedback meeting ensures a 50% chance.  And for 90% certainty, you must have been given the verbal nod.

These can quite readily be adpated to most solution selling situations I’m sure.

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