Woody Sessoms, SVP, global service provider at Cisco, shared his insights at the 2016 Chief Sales Executive Forum on winning the trust and loyalty of customers. To engage in long-term partnerships with customers, successful companies embrace the following tenets:
- Recognize the Game Has Changed–Customers no longer make purchasing decisions based on features, but outcomes. New competitors are creating cost pressure. The speed of innovation is accelerating. Change is a constant. Express the value of your products in terms that are relevant to your changing customers…and work hard to maintain that relevancy. Because what is relevant today will change tomorrow.
- Adapt Market Segments–The market consists of innovators, fast followers and late adopters. Each customer group has its own go-to-market model, speed of innovation and appetite for risk. And each gets a different sales force. Your company must find ways to co-create with each type of customer to deliver an optimized business case.
- Earn Trust–Enduring principles, like trust, never go out of style. Differentiate your company from competitors by creating customer partnerships based on trust that you will deliver what you promise.
- Create Culture–Great business culture is derived from involved people. Pay attention to how you reward your employees and how you measure success. Look for creative and entrepreneurial people to join your staff and expand your business culture. Work hard to get them involved.
The illustration below from graphic recorder Kelly Kingman illustrates Woody’s presentation in a most innovative way. Enjoy!
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