The c-suite challenge
Most enterprise technology companies engage with the market via the IT function, seeing the CIO as the ultimate decision maker. Whilst the CIO is influential, and not to be side-stepped, the key decision makers reside in the c-suite.
Tech sector business developers and account managers continue to struggle with attracting and retaining the attention of CxOs. Here is the problem and my proposed way forward.
There has never been a more important time to forge meaningful relationships with the c-suite and their associated influencers, particularly in respect of complex enterprise sales. The problem is big ticket sales are on the decrease because the forces at play, including Covid 19, have shortened the horizons for all organisations. Tech sector sales professionals have always struggled with acquiring and retaining the attention of senior executives and today is more challenging than ever.
I have worked with thousands of tech sales people for several decades. Much of my time today is spent engaging with the c-suite. I can see that that this sales engagement disconnect continues to dampen the value that the tech sector has to offer, at a time when it is critically needed.
Here’s how I can help you address this:
One way to establish trust and relevance is by association. I can speak at your c-level events and thus demonstrate to your clients and prospects that you see the world from their perspective and understand the problems they face, perhaps better than they do.
I can support you in respect of intimate gatherings right through to arena-scale events. The ‘inspiring slap in the face’ they receive will help you move into uncharted transformational territory, rather than simply responding to problematic ‘request for digitalisation’ proposals.
Workshops offer a way to take the conversation to the next level. I can work with you and your experts to create valuable experiences for your c-suite contacts and in turn deepen the connection between your organisation and the key decision makers.
But such marketing approaches will come to nothing if your people are unable to run with the associated leads. I have developed a workshop for your sales professionals that will give them a framework to both acquire and retain the attention of the senior executives in your key accounts.
Your sales people are only as effective as the environment in which they operate, I can work with you to optimise your approach, processes and work conditions to ensure you harness the full cognitive capacity of your team in a manner that both they and your market will deeply value.
I can also:
- Work with your key account teams to improve their hit rate.
- Play an advisory role to your clients in respect of how to navigate these uncertain times, as part of your key account investment activities.
Online training enables your people to learn in their own time. Such training can be used to help your partners develop their c-suite capability and thus create greater value for all parties.
This online training can include your own materials as well as your branding.
- Assess the capability of your sales professionals, the way they are managed and the means by which they are supported by your marketing function.
- In conjunction with your sales leadership, I will develop an educational programme that will be focused on capturing and retaining the attention of c-suite targets. The primary focus will be in accelerating the paths to trust, relevance and value. The CIO will be a supporter, rather than an adversary with this new approach.
- Work with the sales leadership to establish an operating model along with the associate metrics that encourages c-suite engagement.
- Work with marketing to ensure that their content, events and tools resonate with the c-suite.
Please note the c-suite engagement is not an alternative approach to creating new opportunities, but an additional one. However it is an important channel because increasingly strategic technology spend decisions are made outside of the IT function.
The key benefits of engaging me:
- I have worked with thousands of sales professionals in the enterprise IT space across the world.
- My approach will enable your people to accelerate the paths to trust, relevance and value delivery.
- The value expectations in respect of your offerings is a given. I will help your people deliver value at a personal level and thus amplify the c-suite perception of your organisation and its offerings.
- As the world moves to a consumption model, there is a danger that IT players will devolve into invisible utility players. I will reverse this trend for your organisation.
- Ultimately your sales professionals will develop the confidence and capability to engage as a peer of the c-suite.
We wanted someone who would engage our leadership differently. Ade did this brilliantly. Engaging, fast paced and multifaceted. Just what was needed to shake things up a little in the last session of our conference!
We recently held a conference in Milan around “Digital” for our senior partners throughout the MED region (Italy, Spain and Portugal) and Ade joined us by VC as a keynote speaker. Even by VC Ade kept the audience captive with lots of note taking and it also provoked a lot of discussion after the event. One of the most compelling keynote speakers that we have had in the MED region.
Ade understands business and IT opportunities through the lens of executives and how to present this back in a concise manner with clear takeaways.
Ade spoke at an event for around 250 of our UK & Israel Technology team. Ade has a fantastic presentation style, and it was clear in the prep calls that he was able to take our overall theme of the event and link that to his presentation. I would highly recommend Ade as a motivational speaker and thought leader.
Ade McCormack sounds a much-needed clarion call for IT to “grow up” and become a mature business function.