Planning is something that most sales pros say they want to do. That is until they realize that “Real” Account Planning requires actually having to Update/Upgrade the way they interact with Customers. This proves to be a sticking point with some sales pros, but those that choose to go down A True Planning path, often separate themselves from the vast majority of Sellers.
A key element is to always be sure to understand your customer’s Ever-Evolving needs. If you don’t, the odds are that whatever you position (plan to sell) will be out of date. The way we recommend doing Account “Execution” Planning that is labeled “Dynamic” is for a good reason: Proper Plans are updated on a continuing basis based on Change at Each Customer.
To be effective, the Account Execution Planning Process must include several Elements:
• Dynamic: The plan is continually changing, because things are continually changing. The Planning Process is ever changing, because that is the nature of most successful relationships with Clients
• Team-Oriented: Getting the right Resources from the Customer Engaged with the Seller or Selling Team, ensuring that all who will interact with the Customer will form a unified front in their interaction with the Customer
• Relationship-based: Unless you are selling today’s version of a “Hot” Product, building and maintaining a Relationship with your Buyer will make or break 95% of all Selling situations.
• Collaborative: Working both with your organization and then with the Customer Elevates how the Customer will think about the Seller and/or Selling organization.
• Ever evolving: In this day and age Plans have to be updated on an ever-increasing basis. is this the sign of a bad plan? Quite the Contrary, in most cases, it is the sign of a very good plan. As Progress is made, the plan needs to be updated to reflect the progress that has been made and where we will next work on advancing the work we are doing with each Customer.
There is much more that can be said, but see if your process can “Check Off” these key elements- or is all you are doing “Checking the Box?”