Here are some of our success stories:
- Tom introduced the transformative change of developing a sales culture in a bank leading to one of the most challenging and successful bank transformations ever undertaken. Staff did not join a bank ever expecting they would need to learn how to sell. Among the uninitiated, being a sales person carried connotations of hard sell. Tom shifted what he referred to as the “rubber pinstripes syndrome” and repositioned selling from their image of hard sell to one of providing great service to consumers by asking the right questions to more accurately determine their needs and then matching somewhat complex products to them. Selling was positioned as the highest form of service. Staff embraced the concept so strongly that the culture at the branch level changed much faster than expected. By training staff to ask the right questions to more fully understand customer needs helped staff understand that this was actually something their customers wanted. It resulted in a quantum leap forward in building the bank’s image as a friendly, helpful bank. Customer satisfaction soared.
- For a large Canadian publisher, with most customers south of the border and with little understanding of the Canadian market, Tom built sales scripts that helped the sales force convince potential American customers, who didn’t think Canada was a market worth investing in, that the Canadian market was too big to ignore. By taking a marketing solutions approach to helping Americans understand the Canadian market, pipeline leads increased by 35% and closed sales by 20%.
- While facilitating the transformation of branch staff of a large Canadian bank to a sales culture, we realized there was extremely low understanding of the customers that lived around neighbourhood branches. To solve the problem, using readily available local area market data, Tom created information packages that helped staff understand the customer demographics in their immediate branch trade areas. Based on these demographics customer needs could be more readily identified. However, after the introduction of the info packs we quickly realized that the products staff were trained on were mismatched with customer needs living in the area. This led to the development of the “Dream Team” staffing model. Immediately staff training was inventoried for every staff member in every branch. Once skills were inventoried, staff were dispatched to the branches that matched their knowledge and skills to the needs of customers living around the branch. Training programs were developed to fill gaps where they existed. An additional benefit was that staff no longer wasted time trying to sell products customers didn’t need. Staff productivity soared.
- Introduced contact management software that databased every sales contact, the essence of the conversation, follow up call dates and every potential new sales prospect. Productivity increased 30%.
- Created common sales proposal templates for every sales person. All too often sales people are left on their own to create a sales proposal…the net result they’re all bad and no two are the same. Tom created common templates for new proposals for non-customers and a common template for existing customers simply because their information needs are not the same.
- To further increase sales productivity at a leading bank, a quadrant analysis was undertaken. Every retail branch was ranked in one of four quadrants based on their level of current development vs. their development potential. We found a huge mismatch between the skills staff had in their existing branch and the skills they needed to optimize customer growth, acquisition and retention. To optimize sales, staff with the best sales skills were dispatched to branches with the highest potential for new business development but were underdeveloped…i.e. they had tremendous growth potential and therefore needed the best sales people. Equally, staff with the best relationship skills to retain and grow business with existing customers were dispatched to the branches that needed staff with awesome relationship building and effective phone skills to stay in touch with customers (i.e. branches were well developed but had little upside growth potential). The quadrant analysis was also effective in determining branches that had low development and low potential – these were deemed to be closed or relocated.
- Tom worked with a one of Canada’s largest giftware wholesalers to realign their sales territories ensuring the right number of sales people serving potential sales prospects in each.