Are you making the most of your salespeople's daily customer interactions?

The answer to the headline is probably no, unfortunately. Here, you can discover what it takes to turn the tide—if your sales organization is open to new ways of collaboration.

listening tube that illustrates the ability to listen to customers

Maj Wissing



min read

September 19, 2023

  1. Are you capitalizing on the free customer feedback that salespeople receive daily? So that you can know exactly what customers think about prices, products, and services and can adjust accordingly?
  2. Are you addressing all of the customer's needs? Or could you benefit from more eyes on the case?
  3. Are you creating structure and focus? In other words, are your sales operations organized in a way to intentionally support transparency, constant evaluation, and adjustment?

If you answered no, no, and... well, sort of no, then keep reading to see how to get started.

Can you afford to waste (free) customer feedback?

The daily interactions salespeople have with customers offer a unique opportunity to gain insights into their habits, challenges, and desires. These insights come directly from customers—and for free. However, it takes resources to build an organization that's ready to accept and utilize this feedback, especially in areas like product development and customer service. The world is always changing, making it hard to stay ahead. Still, understanding your customers can help you become proactive rather than reactive. This requires constant sharing, testing, and reacting to what you observe, ensuring you remain relevant to your customers.

What's the cost of only having one perspective on the customer?

Salespeople are often seen as lone cowboys who've traded their horse for a (sometimes) flashy car. As a result, they often face the customer alone without any support. Also, sales is highly competitive, so salespeople keep their cards close to their chest, which doesn't usually benefit the customer—and ultimately doesn't benefit the salesperson or the company either. This makes it clear that we need to consider how sales teams can work collaboratively.

Having a team responsible for the entire sales process around a customer or a group of customers can ensure a comprehensive understanding of the customer's needs and challenges. Four eyes are better than two. But this doesn't come naturally. It's crucial to maintain:

  1. Transparency
  2. A willingness to test one's approach
  3. Flexibility to adjust

These are fundamental principles when working agile. Yes, you heard right. There's actually a term for this work approach: AGILE, and it's not an adjective. Agile provides a framework for a new way of working, allowing close collaboration with stakeholders and customers and quickly adapting to changes in needs and requirements.

So how can we transform our sales approach?

Structure creates focus. You can benefit from having structured daily operations in the sales organization.

The agile framework, Scrum, offers an event setup that can be relevant for a sales organization with a bit of tweaking. There are many fancy terms, but don't be intimidated. It's straightforward:

  • Sprint – While there's not much "sprinting" in the sales process, consider working in 4-week units of time with goals set for the end of each period. This is called a sprint
  • Sprint Planning – Plan out the next four weeks concerning what's needed to achieve the sprint goal. This is where you look each other in the eye and commit.
  • Daily Scrum – Imagine the value of meeting with your team for 15 minutes daily to discuss progress towards the sprint goal. Doesn't it make good sense to address any challenges head-on?
  • Sprint Review – or "Pipeline Review" – showcase your accomplishments from the past four weeks to stakeholders and those with a shared business goal. What did you learn? What did you sell? With input from stakeholders, how will this affect future projections? What will you bring into the next sprint? This could also be where you provide customer feedback to product and customer service teams.
  • Sprint Retrospective – Reflect on the past four weeks of collaboration. What worked? What could have been better? What should you do more of or stop doing altogether?

With this structure, you'll always be held accountable, ensuring continuous progress.

Can you afford not to change the way you operate?

The world is evolving rapidly, and circumstances change constantly. To be proactive, you need:

  • Ongoing input and feedback from customers to adjust products and services continuously.
  • A multi-faceted perspective on customers and their challenges to provide the best advice.
  • Structured and proactive work with customers.

Changing how you operate is part of the solution—specifically, starting to work agilely. Such a shift won't happen overnight, but it's worth it.

So, what are you waiting for? Isn't it time to get started?

Changing how you operate is part of the solution—specifically, starting to work agilely. Such a shift won't happen overnight, but it's worth it.

If you're keen to learn more, please let us know. At Syndicate, we have experience implementing agile approaches in sales organizations, and we're always up for a chat about your potential.

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