Engineers Can Sell – EXAMPLE LEARNING PATH
Note: this is an example learning path. YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO ACCESS MOST OF THE CONTENT unless you have a subscription.
- Engineers Can Sell – EXAMPLE LEARNING PATH
- Suggested learning path for EXAMPLE ORG
- 1. Intro
- 2. The mindset that leads to strong sales behaviours
- 3. Understanding how customers ‘buy’
- 4. Engaging new customers
- 6. Exploring and building value
- 6. Exploring and building value (cont)
- 7. Conversational process and skills
- 8. Other useful modules
- My clients have included
- Other options to help engineers learn to sell
This is your team page which will contain a suggested ‘learning path’ for you to follow together with some group exercises.
There’s a button like the above in the left sidebar of module pages. Please provide me feedback any time so that I can keep the journey efficient and hopefully enjoyable for you where possible.
My goal is to create the most efficient way to help engineers improve their sales results. If you have ideas that might help me do that (so that things work continuously better for you), I, and those who use this after you, would really appreciate your help.
You can access the platform with the button below.
Director – Excelerated Performance Ltd
Suggested learning path for EXAMPLE ORG
The modules below are clickable links. Autonomy for your learning approach is important however some of the team exercises will require you to take some modules so that you can explore them with your team. Don’t forget you can access the entire platform here and either browse the directory, use the tagcloud, or best of all use the ‘learning heist’ search box to search for solutions to your challenges.
Each module below has it’s title and clickable link, followed by why it might be useful to you.
Tip: don’t forget to learn efficiently, you’re in control. That means don’t just sit there, do something. Change the video playback speed if I’m going too slow, use the video bookmarks where available, navigate to the most impactful content, ask yourself questions, ask me questions, take notes (copy my ideas), make notes (spark your own ideas) etc.
If you want a welcome and an overview.
1.2 How to maximise the value you get from this resource
How to use the platform efficiently.
1.3 The one thing that’ll make the biggest difference
The reason most engineers struggle to sell. Fix it!
2. The mindset that leads to strong sales behaviours
2.1 Want to think like the best?
We get in our own way. Those succeeding think differently.
2.2 Get building the most important skill now
Everyone should start improving this right now.
2.3 How to avoid being ‘salesy’
Engineers often need to act on this.
2.4 The mindset that builds trust and respect
For those too focused and excited by their own solutions! (Hint: that’s most engineers)
Team exercise: the lens customers buy through
You’ll need to have done modules 1.3, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4.
Suggested time: 30 mins discussion.
Pay-off: This is pivotal. It opens up the teams perspective of what might really be driving your buyers thinking and decisions.
Challenge the ‘logic trap’. If your buyers were pursuing a feeling, then what feeling(s) are they making decisions towards? Your engineering solution, logic and details enables that. But they buy the feeling/emotional outcome first. So clarify it. And lead your approach with it.
3. Understanding how customers ‘buy’
3.1 How do your buyers buy?
Useful to understand the stages your customers are at so that you can align.
3.2 What sales engineers must know about business
Some quick pearls of wisdom to embrace if you want to make this work
3.3 Working around customer barriers and limitations
If you or your customers face limitations that prevent them saying ‘yes’. (And how to progress when things aren’t perfect).
3.4 Set yourself up to win
This module and exercise is worth doing every so often no matter your experience. It gets both your feet on the ground and in a strong position to get business with the right customers.
Team exercise: understanding how customers buy
You’ll need to have done modules 3.1 and 3.3.
Suggested time: 30 mins. Longer if there’s value!
Pay-off: there is a typical buying process (or set of steps) your customers go through. You should clarify what those are, then be steps ahead of them, ready to appear with value for that customer where possible. If you do, getting the ‘yes’ at the end becomes much easier.
Team exercise: set yourself up to win
You’ll need to have done module 3.4.
Suggested time: 30 mins
Pay-off: Your competition probably can’t answer these questions easily. Once you can, you’re ahead of them, and your customers will notice.
4. Engaging new customers
Note: Conversations revealed you might not have a challenge getting doors open. However, you probably still need to engage people who you don’t yet know, so these modules are helpful to align with other personality types.
4.1 The best way to engage them
If you can get them talking, you don’t need this. If you can’t, you do.
4.2 Becoming their ideal ‘white knight’
This is more important if you’re competing against other people. They want the right kind of ‘white knight’ to come to their aid.
4.3 Cutting the key that opens the door
How to reach out cold and get a ‘yes, lets talk!’ Note, you may have a pipeline of opportunities but these modules can still help you learn how to align to people.
4.4 How to be someone who’s always ‘right’
Oh, come on, who even needs to be persuaded to view this one?!
4.5 Crafting your message
A walkthrough to create an email that gets a ‘yes’.
Team exercise: engaging new customers
Totally optional if you think this is worth some team attention. If so, it’s worth agreeing to sit the modules above. (Or one of you take them then teach the team!)
Suggested time: 30 mins
Pay-off: Most clients who complete an ’empathy map’ with their team are glad they did. It helps you better understand your customer’s perspective.
Did you see the module on ‘how to be someone who’s always right’? (Of course you did, you pushed someone out the way to get to it didn’t you?) My clients often share great successes with this technique. It works. You can either think on your feet and use ‘pace pace leads’ but to get to that position it’s worth designing some to use in specific situations (or at least discussing some examples with your team).
You could do this:
Each come up with a part of a typical conversation that feels a bit awkward or clunky. E.g. approaching discussing price, or pushing back on them, or justifying something you’ve said. Those conversational bits when it’s hard to find the words. Then, in pairs, design a ‘pace pace lead’ that might work. Keep it short and punchy, ensure two nods, then a simple ‘lead’ that progresses the situation seamlessly. Don’t forget to challenge each other’s efforts to improve them! You could then learn these so that they flow. A (cocky) top performing sales person once said to me, “Mark, I have certain words that when said in a certain order make me a lot of money!” (Interesting that computer coders could make the same claim.)
6. Exploring and building value
6.1 Building and maximising value to get a ‘yes’
Understanding much of this will do the heavy lifting! Note, this is not one module but a ‘lesson’ consisting of a number of modules. If you don’t take them all, at least go to the ones you’re drawn towards. Then discuss with your colleagues. There’s ‘stuff’ to be learned here! It’s helped me sell into large global organisations as a one man band.
Team exercise: plotting and building value
You win at this when your understanding of true value to the customer matches theirs.
Suggested time: 60 mins
Pay-off: This is perhaps the most important (or valuable) exercise you could do as a team that will impact your sales significantly. It helps you to ‘see’ the value in your offerings that you perhaps previously couldn’t see. And it especially helps you ‘see’ value as your customer sees it. Get that right and it changes everything.
You’ll have to complete the modules in 6.1 above, and there are a number of modules and videos to go through. However, you could tackle these 1 module at a time, then do the exercise with your colleagues. The doc below should be printed and ideas written into.
6.2 Finding the buyer’s map
If you’ve got their map, you can show them how your solution advances them. If you haven’t, you can’t!
Team exercise: finding the buyer’s map
Suggested time: 30 minutes
Pay-off: focuses you on increasing clarity so that you can position your value
The exercise is mentioned in the video on the Finding the buyer’s map module. You can jump to the part that describes the exercise using the bookmark on the video.
6. Exploring and building value (cont)
6.4 Your customer’s journey
Module coming soon! (This is about building value at every stage with customers)
6.5 How to be more valuable to customers
I know you folks are lovely, nice, polite people. Keep it that way. But also do this or you won’t get ‘yeses’!
7. Conversational process and skills
7.1 How to build rapport
Most people could do it better, and it builds instant trust (to build further trust upon!)
7.2 Are your customers telling the truth?
Module coming soon!
7.3 Grease the wheels for the customer and remove pushback
Conversational techniques to keep the customer onside
7.4 How to prevent pushback and objections
Get this right and everything becomes easier.
Team exercise: preventing, dodging, and dissolving pushback (and objections)
Suggested time: 20 mins
Pay-off: These conversational obstacles throw most people and shut deals down. Much of the time they needn’t! Get this right and you’ll handle them like a pro.
You should do module 7.4 above and I also recommend doing this one on reacting to objections (which is also in this learning path later).
For this exercise, as a team, brainstorm the top 2-3 most common objections you face that you find challenging to overcome. Decide on the no. 1 priority. Together, write down some phrasing to pre-empt the objection (similar to mine). Feel free to send it to me to critique! Done right, it’ll be worth learning and saying early at the appropriate point. Then, take your 2nd or 3rd objections on your list and design phrasing to say if you had to respond to a customer who brought these up. Again, feel free to send to me for comments. Note, reacting using the phrasing isn’t all that different to pre-empting. So long as it flows and makes sense. It’s just pre-empting is easier because you’re not on the back foot.
7.5 How to position things to make sense
This is about ‘framing’ what we say to put context, purposeful meaning or value around it.
7.6 How to show that you’re listening and understand
No one will buy from you if you don’t do this!
7.7 Full lesson of modules: Explore
These modules explore how to ask your questions in conversation
7.8 Full lesson of modules: Value
These modules help you conversationally bring alive everything you’ve learned about ‘value’.
7.9 Full lesson of modules: Options
These modules help you present your options, suggestions and next steps to customers.
Most people just want me to tell them how to make their customer say ‘yes’. Alright, I’ll tell you. Master all the previous modules and you’ll find getting a ‘yes’ comes really easily! Also take this module, just incase…
8. Other useful modules
8.1 Intro to engaging customers who come to you
Module coming soon!
8.2 Things you should and shouldn’t say to customers
This is worth a look for some things commonly said by engineers that result in an unexpected ‘game over!’
8.3 Learning and growing from the meeting
8.4 Squeezing all the value you can from a ‘no deal’
Module coming soon!
My clients have included
Other options to help engineers learn to sell
Don’t forget that as well as this e-learning platform Mark runs face to face workshops, online workshops, coaching, and consulting too.
You can find out more here: https://helppeoplebuy.com/