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On episode 24 of The Insiders Podcast, hosts Richard Lane and Simon Hazeldine were joined by Jedd Williams (Head of Global Sales Acceleration) from Poly.
Jedd weighs in on how global sales acceleration teams can help generate revenue across broader organisations and shares how to encourage sales partners to drive product and sales using a customer first mindset.
Sales acceleration is a prominent strategy throughout B2B organisations due to long, complex sales cycles within competitive markets.
Depending on what product or service your organisation is selling, acceleration strategies can look different. But they generally consist of using content, analytics, and resources strategically to deliver impactful engagement that increase deal momentum. Speaking on his current role, Jedd said:
“Ultimately sales acceleration is really a way to drive new product introduction, new lines of revenue across the broader Poly sales organisation.”
Putting acceleration strategies and resources in place helps sales teams become more productive, allowing them to push customers through the pipeline more effectively, aiming to speed up the sale and resolve customer needs faster.
When discussing the effectiveness of sales acceleration, Jedd also noted that sometimes acceleration teams are best placed outside of the sale. Explaining that it’s all about adding value to the sale, he added:
“I also say if my team is not adding any value to the equation, we should not be in that equation. So, the ideal scenario is if the HP team or the Poly team can transact the deal and they don’t need the global sales acceleration overlay team in there, that’s not a bad thing.”
Exploring how best to gain momentum around a company project, Jedd provides a simple solution – name things. Jedd said:
“As silly as it may sound, and as simple as it may be, give it a name that everybody from the CEO on down talks about. Back to the one team, one plan. Let’s embrace it, let’s get behind it, let’s go. And that does seem to get the momentum of the broader organisation behind you because people know what it is.”
Often, naming things like practices or projects gives them an added sense of concreteness and helps teams connect on a shared definition. As Jedd highlighted, “It creates focus.”
In some instances, businesses might opt to broaden their market by implementing an alliance partner or a co-selling framework. This is often the case for companies that provide hardware or software solutions – if both products work well together, partnerships can create a smoother customer experience and help businesses win renewals.
However, co-selling and partner selling come with their own challenges. Jedd argues that within these selling frameworks you need to understand and work through three obstacles:
1) Choosing the right partners
Not every business will be the right fit as a potential partner. The most successful partnership will work well in the desired market, have complementary offerings to your own and be willing to work as a team. As a hardware provider, Jedd shared his insight:
“You really must look at the platform providers that are specific to the country you’re going to market in and make sure that you have the right relationships with those providers. Identify their desire to be a strategic partner and avoid those that look at you just as a hardware provider.”
2) Knowing your role
Effective communication is key. It’s paramount for your organisation and partners to work well together, for the sake of the customer. Customers will be hesitant to invest in a solution that does not work seamlessly:
“To use an American analogy, understand who’s the quarterback driving that overall, the transaction really owning the relationship with the customer, and who is providing more of a support function to help bring the right level of expertise into that discussion with the customer.”
3) Maximise your opportunities
Both teams should be focused on working together to put the customer first. Jedd said:
“The Poly team make sure that we’re maximising the size of the opportunity and getting the customer what they need early in the process. If we can really co-sell and wrap those opportunities up faster and get the customer what they want, it’s good for everybody: partner, customer and Poly.”
Listen to the Jedd’s full episode on The Insiders Podcast to learn more about how you can supercharge partner selling and create a successful sales acceleration culture.