Change is daunting. In sales, tweaks and shifts in the process–both minor and major–can make even the most experienced sales leaders anxious.
Implementing a new tech solution should make everyone’s job easier–but that doesn’t change the fact that learning something new can be met by a bit of resistance from stakeholders.
Of course, if the new tech is ultimately beneficial to the organization, people will eventually overcome their fears and give their reservations a rest. Yet, as with anything new that’s going to impact the way people work, things can go wrong.
Yes, implementing a new tech solution is a sensitive situation. If not handled correctly, there is a potential to delay the benefits.
To avoid this, sales leaders must ask themselves these questions before making major decisions with regard to adopting new tech.
Was the purpose established?
There are so many new tech solutions out in the market that it’s a real risk for tech buyers to create need instead of responding to their existing needs.
What does this mean? When thinking of adopting new software, it’s important to define what the holes are–what needs are left to be fulfilled? Will the new tech serve this purpose?
Is there a clear sales purpose and sales outcome arising from this new tech?
In real terms, how does this new solution impact the processes of the sales organization?
There are tasks that could be simplified, yes, but will the new software impact the outcomes of sales directly? Will make the job of sales easier, and in effect, allow them to hit sales goals and set bigger ones?
Does it reduce costs in the long run?
A lot of tech solutions are front-loaded costs so it might not be wise to look at the initial investment and judge the tech against that. The question that begs to be answered is: Is this new tech able to do one or both of the following: (1) create more revenue and (2) save time.
Will it improve the quality of current output?
In sales, it’s not always about the number of deals closed. Will the new tech allow reps to improve the quality of the deals closed in terms of getting clients with better product match and reducing the churn rate?
Will it smoothen prospecting? Will it make everyone better at their job, effectively getting better results for the organization?
Has it been tested by actual key stakeholder?
It is nice on paper. The demo was solid. The reps watched and it looks like something that would really impact the team.
But, has anyone on the team tried the tech yet?
Is it something that can be learned relatively quickly? Does it match the current process? Is it intuitive in the context of the current workflow?
Is it timely? Can the team afford the onboarding time?
Any tech solution that holds the promise of impacting a sales team positively will likely require time for onboarding. This time includes learning the purpose, function, and use of the new tech.
Can you afford to schedule this now? Is there time to put together an onboarding plan that matches the pace of the sales organization? Is this the right time to adopt this new tech or is there a need to schedule it sometime in the future?
Are there established channels for stakeholder feedback?
With the excitement of new tech comes rose-tinted glasses. To encourage both positive and negative feedback to be reported, there has to be established channels for it. A daily or weekly check-in that’s dedicated to evaluating new tech is a good starting point.
Is the vendor open to providing potential customization and additional support needs?
As with any tech solution, the flexibility of customization is crucial to ensuring you get the benefits you projected. In the earlier stages of your buying process, ensure that you’re asking these questions to the vendor. Do your best to think of possible challenges and concerns that would need customization. Same goes for situational issues that might require extra support.
As a final note, you only want to introduce new tech that will ultimately add value to you and your customers. But before you even get to that, you still need to ensure that the solution is something stakeholders will use.
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