Joe Fenn is with HP Software Services, a global software enterprise and infrastructure tools company. The organization focuses on implementation and transformation for software customers. His role is sales excellence that focuses on enablement, confidence, and performance for our sales team.
Why did you see a need for a new methodology in your organization?
We’ve had methodologies for many years at our organization through many iterations of various disciplines, various other platforms. One thing we found was that as we had matured and became more of a tools-focused organization. The methodologies we were using took us through a very tactical route. We were looking for something to be more strategic and something to help us with skill development beyond just the product and process knowledge that we were currently covering.
What was it about SPI’s Solution Selling® that led you to select them?
We were introduced to Solution Selling® through some of our VPs who had been at other organizations. When we looked at how we could leverage the pain, power, vision, value, and control methodology in our current sales process, we saw a real watershed moment on how that could take our skills and our sales process to the next level.
What has it been like working with SPI?
SPI has been a great partner for us. The instructors are very knowledgeable about both the current methodology and the development maturity, so there’s quite a depth of understanding there. What’s really been great though, is the ability to cover the breadth of our organization from direct sales force enablement through mid- and executive-level coaching, even extending into our marketing and product development teams. So, when we have our product launches, they’re steeped in the methodology that the sales force needs to use for actual successful sales.
What results have you achieved since using SPI?
The impact has actually been great and somewhat unexpected. When we started looking at Solution Selling®, we were looking at just maturing our methodology, but it’s actually become another level of improvement to our entire sales process.
Now we have a single process integrated into our CRM, which we coupled with the skills to help our sales force achieve better pipeline generation, demand creation, and ultimately, better sales. There are a couple of tools that we’re using that were a bit unexpected for us. The Pain Chain that helps our technical sellers get outside of IT and extend into the business has been very helpful. The Evaluation Plan that our, again, technical sellers use to understand how our customers are going to evaluate and process the order from the customer side, has helped us realize that we could do quite a bit more on working with our customer, from their perspective, rather than taking that traditional feature function approach of technical sales.
What advice would you give someone embarking on this methodology journey?
So, advice for someone who’s just starting out on the journey – I think what’s made us successful is the fact that we were able to get a good cross-section of our organization involved. When we started training our sales force, we included our sales ops team. As that grew, we included our product managers and marketing team so that any time a new product launches, it has the tools the sales force needs. And then, anytime the order goes through order processing or order management, they have the matching tools within that system to support our solutions selling effort.
How would you describe your experience at the Customer Success Conference?
I think the experience here has been great. It’s been a nice blend of seeing what’s coming from SPI, hearing from other customers about how their implementation’s gone, and what’s made them successful or given them challenges, and also hearing from a couple of the partners on how their tools couple in nicely with Solution Selling® PPVVC. I’m looking forward to leveraging a couple of those partners as well.