“You got to learn as much as you can about your customer prior to even proposing the idea. Then you can determine why is now the right time.” – Leon Baumann in today’s Tip 1666
How do you make sure you have the best experience for an executive briefing?
Join the conversation below and learn more about Leon!
Have feedback? Want to share a sales tip? Call or text the Sales Success Hotline: 512-777-1442 or Email: [email protected]
Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today’s tip comes from Leon Baumann. Leon’s focus at Dell Technologies and his career are centered around being a Champion for his Clients. While he has been engaged in B2B Sales for over 2 decades in Tech, he has found much more joy and success by focusing on Human to Human Helping (H2HH) as his approach. Here he is:
Leon Baumann: Hello, Daily Sales Tips listeners. I’m excited to share some experiences to help you all be better sellers and better serve your customers. And today I’m going to focus on something I did with one of my customers just last week. Last week I did my first on-site executive briefing in years. I mean, prior to the pandemic, I’d make an annual trip with my customer’s executives. But through the pandemic, I did a lot of virtual briefings, which were good conversations, but certainly not the same experience of being on-site together for a couple of days. We all traveled into the same location from all over the country. We started on Sunday night for a dinner and had two days of great meetings. I can tell you, by having everybody in the same room, the dialog about their objectives and the intended outcomes, it was incredible. It helps to have an executive team within your customer that is as forward-thinking, open-minded, and as focused as mind.
Here’s the tip. How to make sure you have the best experience possible for an executive briefing. Well, first of all, you got to learn as much as you can about your customer prior to even proposing the idea. Then you can determine why is now the right time. Why are you the right partner for them to commit a couple of days of travel to? Then you can start to develop the right agenda of topics and speakers that align to what your customer is trying to achieve. You then need to select the right speakers that are not only thought leaders within your company on the topics that are most relevant and important to your customer, but you need to make sure that your speakers understand your customer. Are they going to be prepared for the questions, for the interruptions, for the chance to potentially go down a rabbit hole but keep the group on pace? So you need to prepare your speakers.
Now, for me, I put together a complete dossier about my customer and share it with the speakers at least two weeks prior to the meetings. It includes, what do we do with them today. What does our relationship mean to them as a company? What is happening in their business? How do they focus on their customers? What are their business objectives? What are their technology objectives? And who are these executives? What are their backgrounds? What experiences do they have that are relevant to the topic that you want your speaker to cover? And recognize that you know a lot about your customer, but you’re now likely introducing a half a dozen or a dozen people that know their topic well, but it’s your job to translate the impact of their knowledge to your customers, executives, these great people that they’ve never met. Then I also do a prep call with all the speakers about a week prior to cover any questions they might have and review the content that they plan to cover. So when you’re actually there at the briefing, it’s good to have someone with you that has responsibility of keeping time and writing notes, action items, et cetera.
Now, for me, I’d love to have this be an AI function that artificial intelligence can write summaries of the conversation, develop the action items. But until I get there, I want a facilitator that has that role so that I can stay engaged in the conversation and be focused on reading the body language in the room. Now, ensure your speakers and your customers are focused on an open conversation where all questions are good questions and the customer’s understanding is the room’s number one focus. It’s my recommendation to create some shared experiences as well that are both memorable and engaging. If you’re like me, you’re bringing people together from all over the country, not only from your customer, but your team as well. Bring them together to do something that they will remember fondly about the trip outside of just the meetings. Then after you’re done, be sure to do something that shows your appreciation for their investment of time and engagement. Be sure to block some time in your calendar immediately after the trip so you can go ahead and review and document all the notes, the content, and share out the action items so that you can get back to your customer while the memories are still fresh.
In addition, I’d recommend creating a journey map that helps your customers see how they can take the steps from their current state to that art of the possible state, that future state that I hope your meetings created a vision for. Take the time to invest in an executive briefing for your customers’ executives. You, your quota, and your career will be glad that you leveled up to this type of experience. And if you want to learn more, feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn or go ahead and join the Sales Success Society and join me there for regular interaction and engage with other top sellers focused on helping our customers and getting better at our craft. Thank you and have a great day.
Scott Ingram: For a link to connect with Leon and to learn about the Sales Success Society, just click over to DailySales.Tips/1666. Once you’ve done that, be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip. Thanks for listening!