Have you heard about how the most successful people are wearing the same clothes every day to limit decision making? The aim behind this is to improve daily efficiencies by minimizing the number of decisions that have to be made. The idea is real; it’s called “decision fatigue” and businesses are working to evolve around this principle. This is the exact reason that business software providers will work, and work hard, to build a level of recognition that drives companies right to them. The goal is to become the obvious choice, saving you time and effort in your evaluation…hopefully.
Some decisions should not be brushed over, though. The issue here lies in the fact that your business is unique. In fact, your company still exists because it is unique. If you weren’t doing something different than your competitors, you wouldn’t be around, you wouldn’t be scaling and you wouldn’t be in need of a sales solution in the first place. What does this mean? It means that you should be taking a unique approach to evaluating any application that helps run the processes that drive your business.
Slowing Down to Speed Up
One realm where the “one size fits all” misconception is incredibly apparent is in the sales software or CRM space. And honestly, why wouldn’t it be? It’s no secret that finding a new CRM, getting budget and approval, determining the integrations, and ultimately implementing the system is a lot of work and very little fun. You have a business to run and none of these things feel like they make you money. But they do.
This is a case where the “slow down to speed up” concept is a real phenomenon. All too often companies resort to the “industry standard” or the 800lb gorilla instead of taking the time to do a deep dive to uncover the “why” as opposed to the “how” of a challenge.
To help illustrate this point, which of the following questions is more important?
1) How can my reps log their calls?
2) Why do I want calls logged?
The first question will get you a fast answer, and if you ask reps at different CRM companies, you’ll likely get many of the same answers. The latter, however, will ultimately lead to the first question, but it will first help you identify what you’re ultimately looking to get from this piece of your process.
Are you interested in making sure your reps are actually working? Is there a correlation to their activity and their success? Can you make a predictive change in your process based on the data you’re collecting? What data do you really need to make the largest percentage of positive change in the business? These types of questions will define the “how” in a way that will truly impact and improve your business – not just put you in the same old shoes as everybody else. And they will do so by helping you identify and capture the data points that you need to optimize your sales process.
I used to work at a recruitment firm and we used a truly antiquated CRM platform that was leveraged across a significant portion of the recruiting world. Why? Because this software was so widely utilized within our industry. Yet the reps around me were constantly complaining about how hard it was to import leads, make calls, log calls, and take valuable notes in the system.
The truth was, it was far inferior to other cloud-based CRMs on the market, and didn’t have the functionality necessary to support our unique sales processes. Looking back, we should have started our CRM search by asking “why” instead of “how,” and taken the time to find a solution that enabled us to capture the data we needed to grow, rather than taking a shortcut.
The Real Way to Improve Efficiencies
Data is the backbone behind sales success, and the only way to harness that data is by finding tools that align with your business. Find a solution that your company will use and you will start to see the results. Don’t let the 800lb gorilla or industry-specific assumptions get in the way of aligning with the best partner to help you grow. And if you’d like a little help in your search, check out our free CRM Buyer’s Kit.