If your customers are slow to make decisions and your pipeline forecast is forever moving, we can help you.
If your sales force are submitting bids with a low uptake so you feel you are just providing free consultancy, we can help you.
Markets are changing and customers have more opportunities for research before they buy, consequently the sales force has different challenges in order to engage with customers. Gaining insight into your Customer’s world and thereby understanding how you can deliver greater value than your competitors can be key to how you approach your target market.
We have helped companies in various sectors re-focus their propositions and markets for greater customer engagement, leading to more new and extension business. This also assisted the sales management to obtain more reliable forecasts.
“Working with Performative greatly improved the quality of engagement with potential customers and our ability to forecast outcomes from those.” MD, Mobile Technology company.
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A transformed sales operation now selling solutions rather than just products and capable of competing and winning against all types of competitor.
“During the 15 month period of the Performative project we were going through significant change across the business. The extensive business knowledge of the senior Performative staff enabled them to make a major contribution to our change programme going well beyond the scope of the sales [performance transformation] project. The work done by Performative created a great foundation enabling us to maintain consistent double digit growth over the past 3 years. I have no hesitation in recommending Performative to any company needing help with business or sales performance issues.” MD, Sysmex
Sysmex, part of a major global corporation and a market leader in sophisticated blood analysis systems for laboratories, was facing increased levels of competition not just from other equipment manufacturers but, most significantly, from larger, established players with new strategies to provide fully managed solutions. To the NHS such solutions were particularly attractive as a means of dealing with budget constraints by removing the need for capital outlay. The MD was concerned that the sales personnel at all levels, the go-to-market methodology and sales processes were not ideally suited in the face of the new challenges.
The Performative Solution
Performative undertook a complete assessment of Sysmex’s sales position using the Performative Sales Maturity Assessment (SMA) and found:
- Sales people were qualified bio-medical scientists first and sales people second; they were most comfortable with products’ features, which influenced how they sold and to whom.
- Sales were typically made in the laboratory “scientist to scientist”, but NHS decision making was now a mix of procurement, finance, general management and steering committees which included members external to the NHS or the individual Primary Care Trust or hospital.
The SMA was followed by a Sales Performance Transformation Programme to change the selling operation to suit the new environment. Key deliverables were:
- New value-based solution proposition suitable for direct sales.
- New marketing collateral and web site in conjunction with an external agency.
- Complete structured selling methodology (Performative Structured Selling ®).
- Territory, account and deal planning processes including qualification and quantification.
- Sales pipeline and forecasting process including probability calculation on individual deals.
- Induction and sales training for all sales staff.
- Coaching and mentoring the Sales Manager.
- Support for the roll-out of a new CRM system.
- Support for the recruitment of new sales staff and a contracts/bid manager.
- Interim Sales Director role and recruitment of a permanent replacement.
Transformed sales team structure and composition to reduce reliance on too few customers and on the Managing Director as the focal point for sales, thereby positioning the company better as an acquisition target.
Arrk is a software development company that focuses on helping its customers improve their bottom line through the imaginative use of web and mobile technologies.
Arrk’s challenge was that it had built a strong, but small, customer base and this had become a risk to the business. The Managing Director (MD) was also heavily involved in the success of these few customers, thereby compounding the over-reliance position. At the time of Performative’s project, the MD was interested in the possibility of selling Arrk, so needed to ensure a robust selling operation was in place for the benefit of potential buyers.
The Performative Solution
Performative undertook a Sales Performance Transformation exercise in two stages:
- Performative initially provided an interim Sales Director, who undertook a range of activities to structure and establish a good team. These included:
- Evaluating the capabilities and motivations of Arrk’s existing sales and marketing people through one-on-one interviews and psychometric tests
- Creating a marketing/lead generation capability
- Designing and delivering a training and development programme for sales, marketing and sales support staff
- Managing the sales team and undertaking coaching and mentoring as required
- In parallel to the sales team work, Performative implemented Performative Structured Selling®, which included:
- Creating an overarching sales and marketing strategy
- Reviewing Arrk’s current sales and marketing processes including the bidding processes and standard document used for bidding and proposals
- Amending existing processes as required and blending with Performative Structured Selling ® to produce a complete sales and marketing approach
- Documenting the complete process as a sales manual.
A fully integrated and complete end-to-end sales process that underpinned the company’s healthy performance and enabled a corporate sale at a healthy multiplier.
“As a result of Performative developing and executing the Sales Performance Transformation Programme they achieved more in 4 months than we had been able to achieve during the previous 18 months.”
“Performative undertook three assignments for us between 2003 and 2005 including the customisation and deployment of Performative Structured Selling® of which the key principles are still in use today. We have come to realise the true benefit of this robust methodology as it remains a constant in the business regardless of the changes in personnel, market and proposition. The work done by Performative created a great foundation for what is now a very successful business.” MD, Smart421
Smart421 is a well-established systems integrator/software consultancy specialising in innovative business solutions at the sharp end of the IT industry. Prior to engaging Performative, the Smart421 board was facing falling revenues, and remedial actions over the previous 18 month period had been unsuccessful. Smart421 was keen to reverse this situation and aspired to a sales function that could grow existing customer relationships as well as find contracts with new companies.
The Performative Solution
The Performative Sales Maturity Assessment (SMA) uncovered many areas that required attention. A two phase approach resulted in the following deliverables:
- A pragmatic restructuring of the existing go-to-market model to provide a fully integrated end-to-end process.
- Separate sales teams for “new customer creation” and “account growth”.
- Initial focus on growth from existing customers to stabilise the business.
- A structured and supported outbound telephone “lead generation” function.
- Qualification and quantification processes for new customers and opportunities.
- Re-defined customer proposition and target markets.
- Sales recruitment, training and coaching.
- Providing an interim sales director and recruiting a permanent replacement.
- Design and roll-out of a new sales compensation scheme.
- Sales management coaching.
- New processes and templates for Account Planning and Deal Planning.
- A blended learning programme to cover all sales processes for sales and delivery staff.
- CRM and pipeline improvement plans to improve revenue forecasting.
A fully functioning, market aligned sales operation with a newly appointed Sales Director.
“The work done by Performative helped us establish a complete and structured approach to selling which gave us the means to grow the business in a controlled and predictable manner.
Performative helped pave the way for the steady year-on-year revenue increases that we have enjoyed following the completion of their work.” Paul Bragg, MD, Adept Scientific
Adept Scientific is a leading supplier of software and hardware to the research, science and engineering sectors. Adept’s extensive product range combined with superior service and support helps customers collect, analyse, simulate, organise and present data to deliver information and knowledge. Prior to engaging with Performative, Adept had become frustrated by the lack of business growth. Not unusually for a smaller business, Adept’s owners are experts in their field – in this case, science – and had achieved business success through their passion and knowledge of the subject, but they are not professional salespeople and did not have the experience to optimise their sales team to improve revenues.
The Performative Solution
Performative used a number of interventions to build a structured sales operation for Adept:
- A Sales Maturity Assessment (SMA) provided an assessment of existing sales capability and what needed to change to bring about the desired change in performance.
- A Market Focus Review (MFR) to improve understanding of Adept’s market proposition and how the sales people should exploit it to acquire new customers and gain additional business from existing customers.
- Restructuring of the sales force to provide appropriate effort to both new business development and existing account management; this led to more energy being focused on key accounts which held untapped growth potential.
- Introduction of territory and account planning tools and techniques.
- Introduction of qualification and quantification methods to assist with customer development, opportunity pursuit and pipeline management, reporting & sales forecasting.
- Design and delivery of training courses in selling skills as well as in the specially designed processes that had been implemented.
- Support for the recruitment of new sales people including design and deployment of an induction program for new recruits.
- Performative then provided an Interim Sales Director to embed the new sales approach while managing the sales team on a day-to-day basis. A recruitment campaign for a permanent head of sales was designed and implemented, followed by an induction programme and provision of on-going support for a period after his recruitment.