For over ten years, I’ve made a living (sometimes in full, other times partly) from capturing and sharing across sales teams deals that they win.
My specific slant was always twofold; collect and codify any genuine best-practice that should be incorporated into any such similar deal, and pinpoint and promote any key messages that every single prospect in a similar position needs to hear.
A dozen different ways of slicing a success evolved, and each could be diced by a myriad of defining characteristics dependent upon individual circumstance.
Wonderful tales of the power of such intel, effortlessly caught and spread, constantly reached me. Over time, it was less the big numbers that made me most proud, but the small. To me, that’s when I really sensed a change of behaviour had occurred which, in most cases is fundamental and difficult to pull off.
By way of example, one such case involved a salesperson that learned about a new technique that one of his colleagues (and one he did not personally know) used to good affect, and tried to give it a go. Pretty soon, he’d nailed his first sale from it. It may have only netted him £800, but he’d changed what he’d been doing for almost twenty years and now saw a whole new light. Shinier, brighter and longer lasting. Wonderful.
Yet however sweet such victories, my lament is that they tended to be fewer than they should have been. All sorts of reasons abound for this. One for instance, is simply that most salesreps appear conditioned to ignore the experience and advice of anyone else in the field. Think about that statement. Anyway, I came across someone that had set up a spreadsheet to capture Won Sales Analysis.
If you are one of the tiny minority of salespeople that understand the huge value of this, then you’ll no doubt lap it up. What I found annoying corroborating about it though, was the author’s finding that no-one cares about such an activity. This view can be inferred from the observation from the number of pages coughed up by his three googlings;
500,000 – sales analysis
90,000 – lost sales analysis
100 – won sales analysis
I’ve blogged about this kind of gripe before, and notwithstanding the pedantry which would in my opinion erroneously suggest that ‘sales analysis’ by grammatical default includes won sales when I believe it really concerns data analysis, perhaps this highlights something that sets apart the achievers from under-achievers.