Filling the "Compete" Gaps
Have you ever tried to qualify and progress a sales opportunity by bringing account teams from 2 or more companies together? If you are nodding your head and partially rolling your eyes, I have something to share that has made a difference for me.
First let me describe the problem state.
You have 2 account teams working into the same prospect and not inclined to explore each other's offerings and associated leverage points. From outside the 2 teams you can see clear points of leverage but can't convince the teams to meet and collaborate. In addition, in the absence of collaboration, there is high likelihood of you and your partner companies competing.
Confronted with this situation, I catalogued key data items that shaped my side of the partnering discussion, including:
- Delivered business value.
- Delivered strategic value.
- Software sold and/or installed and/or deployed.
- Enterprise agreements in place.
- Business solutions from specialist software companies that have been implemented.
- Long term projects underway.
Partnering to Differentiate
With this information as a foundation for each participating account manager, the onus is now on the account managers from each of the partner companies to meet and search for their combined Unique Business Relevance (UBR).
The discovery steps can be completed in a 1 hour meeting and relies on each account manager sharing a one page:
- Summary of their company's business relevance into the account, as per points 1-6 above.
- SWOT analysis.
When these information is shared, the balance of the conversation is built around whether one company's weaknesses can be covered by the other's strength or if a mutual 3rd party can provide such coverage of a weakness.
At the end of the hour the account managers will have populated the UBR template with their aggregated account specific information.
Keen to hear if this model and associated process has helped. Also, interested to hear of other approaches to solving the same problem.