Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Breakfast In Bangalore

I just finished breakfast with one of my customers out here in Bangalore. He runs a 90 person Asia-Pacific SE team. It's insightful, yet also disappointing, to hear about the apparent global mismatch between sales and presales during the middle of the sales cycle.

Now we both want the same thing - great success for our customers and great revenue for ourselves. It's the speed of the salescycle which causes the discord. Presales views sales as charging through the sales phases as quickly as possible, short-cutting or omitting steps where possible. Sales views presales as an anchor to the process, always slowing things down with questions and yet more questions.

Both sides (and maybe that is the root cause - that there are sides instead of a true single team) believe their approach is correct. Since sales usually trumps presales in >90% of companies - speed rules. The resultant chaos keeps people like me in business. So where is the middle ground? What is the balance between speed and caution? How do we avoid "the dash to demo" yet get the deal done in the shortest time possible?

Many questions . interested in hearing what you do in your company to strike the appropriate balance?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

September Updates

The September Issue of the MTS edge will be published tomorrow (Wednesday Sept 7th) because of the US Labor Day holiday. The focus this month is on Discovery. The lead article looks at Six Magic Questions to ask, once you have covered the First Law of Discovery. It's a little like Newton's First Law - in that customers at rest tend to stay at rest until an external force (that's you) is applied.

You have to understand what the appropriate force is (money, time, regulations, competition, risk etc..) and then how to measure it.

Ask John looks at dealing with an SE who has spelling and grammar issues. It's not as easy as it might initially seem.

The Book Review is John Medina's "Brain Rules". Which not only provides scientific proof that we all have a Jennifer Aniston neuron, but also explains how and why we pay attention and learn things. Very insightful and a good read for an SE.

And The Last Word showcases some examples of whiteboards being used in the "real world" - ranging from UPS to the White House to VMWare.

Enjoy The Read!!