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Jennifer Miller, VP Sales, Vuture | Create A Creative Work Environment – Sales Confidence

Hi my name is Jen Miller I work at a company called Vuture, in the past I also worked at a company called Vocus so I tend to like companies where you just drop the F out of V, so if someone starts a company called Vaak, I’ll will probably be there! So Vuture actually got acquired last week which is exciting news, and needless to say I’m tired, but I think what that means for us and for our businesses we’re about to embark on a very big change management process and it’s not just a change management of a few things it’s going to be a change management of almost every process that we have within the company and with every technology that we have in the company and all the things that we do. 

And so I was thinking about this and I was thinking about how do I help my team and how do I help my leaders to be more effective in this whole change management process and I think the fundamentals of change are actually the same fundamentals of sales. And I think sometimes we forget that because we’re you know we’re so excited being in sales, and we were so excited to be sales leaders that we sometimes forget just kind of the the basics and there’s lots of methodologies, and some of them I think are too complicated for what they are like medic, I’ve done it and I’ve tried to implement it in other places and I’m like you need a lot of help to implement medic, it’s not really fit for purpose in some contexts. And so what I thought is like let’s go back to the beginning of my sales experience and the beginning I learned BANT. How many of you have used BANT look at that like 70%, you used it a lot because I was a long hold! 

So with with BANT I think if you kind of take that same model and you kind of switch it up a little bit what you have is a really good way of thinking about change management. So the be instead of thinking of its budget think of it as bandwidth you know because in in leadership roles and in sales, a lot of times our money and our value is our time, and so if we’re thinking about our time not just our time but also the time of our team, and the roles that they have in the KPIs is that they need to achieve to be successful, you know can we implement something that will give them the bandwidth to stay successful and can we actually see it through to finish; because a lot of times what we do and I do this medic last year is a good appoint got it in and got it in Salesforce has really amped up, it fell flat, and it’s hard to admit that but it but it did and it’s because I didn’t have the bandwidth to see it through with all the other priorities in the business. So whenever you’re thinking about change think about can you do it, if you can’t do it, and if not can someone else in your team do it and if not maybe it makes sense to de-prioritize that for that period of time.

And I think it’s also about the next bit of that is your instead of A, Authority let’s go A is audience. So when you think about change, typically you have a number of different people internally and this is where we’re gonna bring in some other kind of sales methodologies, but think about the people who will be the people that will influence your ability to make change, think about your champions the people that always are amped up about everything that you’re doing, think about the people that are difficult though the ones that typically you know they see the storm cloud and never see the rainbow, and you know think about how you can use those different people for different bits of that process, you know a lot of times I found with people that are really negative, just get them to take ownership of certain parts of it because usually if people own things, they’re emotionally invested in them and that emotional investment tends to mean better outcomes. Your champions right so champions are you know they’re the people that are rally, but they’re not always the best of execution so don’t always think that your champion is the person that you should let lead you know maybe they are the perfect leader for certain parts but maybe they’re also the perfect follower for other parts, so try to know your team know your audience also develop a lexicon right like know the language that’s important to your business for people to be successful, you know when you think about sales, you know we’re a lot of the times experts at mirroring people you know, we take language we use language and really crafty ways sometimes I think, maybe too crafty but we’re using it all the time to get people to buy into what we’re doing and we’re essentially getting them to buy in to change processes. And so really the fundamentals of sales are change management. I think audience but know your people know what they need know what they care about then figure out how that fits in to not just the kickoff of a change process but the ongoing management, the ongoing accountability to those different points

N, alright, so think of the outcomes see that doesn’t work, so think of the need that you’re trying to to fix but then think of the outcome so it’s a little you know I’ve got creative there. But the idea is that if you don’t know what your team need to be successful and you don’t know what the outcome is is that you’re actually driving towards what you’re probably gonna do is what a lot of us probably have done you create these processes and you think they’re beautiful like I’ve done it it’s great it’s all like it’s lined up start to finish from the time someone starts till the time they put into Salesforce, till the time I want to report on it, so the thing is is if that actually isn’t driving the result that you want which is in most cases money, you know, is it good to know that every activity someone does is worth twenty eight pounds you know like that’s exciting for some people but then they may just think they’re not getting paid enough, and so it’s about not getting too caught up in the the detail of what the process and what you’re trying to do but really making sure that the process is is leading to the outcome, and the last bit of that is the timeline, and I think that the outcome and the timeline are so attached because I think change management is the wrong word, because change is very kind of absolute you know. I change jobs that means you know I’ve left and gone to a new one, I’ve changed the country I live in you know it’s pretty final I think that most most of the time we do need this agile way of thinking, or this sort of you know evolution management, and so what we’re trying to do and you know I think that the timeline bit and why it goes back to the the outcome and need bit is that it’s never done, you know you’re you know you have to build processes that help people build routines but you also have to help people realize that a routine isn’t always fixed, and that’s a really hard thing to do because you know if you think of us as human beings we are naturally disposed to be lazy, you know our brains optimize for laziness and I not necessarily laziness but we’re trying to always find the easiest possible way to achieve a goal or to not achieve a goal you know, it’s like I like going to the gym but most the time I don’t actually, but I do try, and I get in habit sometimes and that I break them. You know if you just think about that in terms of people we are managing people evolution processes our people processes, and they are constant. And if you just think of the routine side of that you know we have to be flexible we have to be creative we have to change, but we also have to build in routines that help to drive the outcomes that we’re actually trying to achieve. And so I think the easiest way to think about this is you know if we are what we do is that Aristotle probably yeah if we just think about the the routine side of that we do need to keep that in mind, is that it’s not always about changing and being super agile it’s about having a process around that flexible thinking

So if we just think about evolution change or whatever you want to call it I think it’s a it’s a number of things, so one just think of BANT. It’s the easiest way to just break it into something quite simple that when you’re thinking of building out something new or changing something new can you do it, if you can’t do it can your team do it if they can’t do it who can can you outsource it, can you get budget to do it because if you can’t reprioritize the audience it’s your team your team impact your customers if they’re not happy that’s not working for them it’s probably not working for your customers, so maybe shift the way that you’re thinking what is the need what are you actually trying to solve for versus what’s a symptom, so think of that need versus the outcome and then think of how you’re going to build that into processes not think of it as has to be done by X timeline. Because you know it’s like you think of when you sell a deal it goes into success management and in success management they have quarterly business reviews they have ongoing things that they’re doing in order to stay successful, so again apply that model into the model in which you execute change management, thank you. 

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