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"You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."
One of the fathers of personal development Jim Rohn, famously says.
What happens when there are more than 5 people?
When you are building a business, you are gathering a tribe of hundreds, if not thousands of fans, partners, clients, investors, and employees.
As our network gets bigger and bigger, it gets more difficult to maintain and nurture these relationships over time.
Robin Dunbar, an anthropologist famously created the magical number after which it becomes more difficult to remember key details: 150 people.
Luckily, there is a group of people that we can learn the secrets on how to drive collaboration: Salespeople.
Sales organizations have been using sophisticated pieces of technology for decades, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems, to keep track of leads, deals, contacts, and organizations that they want to build relationships with.
These CRMs centralize key pieces of information so you don’t have to keep everything in your head, and can manage relationships at scale!
When building relationships within your ecosystem there are 5 Key Data Points that will provide the overall view on your progress towards collaborating and creating results, whether its enrolling investors, clients, and/or distribution partners.
- Decision Makers/Process
- Next Check-In Date
- Tasks & Actions
Let’s dive into each, shall we?
- You will want to understand what each person’s goals are. Do they have revenue goals? Are they trying to launch a new project?
- While your specific solution may not be the right fit, understanding their goals opens up the possibility for a more aligned referral
- Within your CRM, you can already pre-set a list of Goals that are collected when prospective collaborators are filling out an intake/call scheduling form
Challenges & Constraints
- What is getting in the way from achieving these goals?
- This challenge establishes the gap that is present, which creates pain and frustration for prospects
- You can communicate the solutions you’ve developed to address those specific gaps with those specific collaborators.
- In your CRM, this can also be a pre-set list of Challenges with extra text field for additional information
- Who is the person that makes decisions in an organization. Whether its a purchasing, investment, or discounting decision, you will always want to ensure you are building a relationship with that person.
- Sometimes relationships begin between two entry-level, or junior analysts
- After both sides qualify viable collaboration opportunities, it will become important to develop a relationship between decision makers
- Specific details such as interests, family information, personal passions are kept track of all the time within CRMs.
- This information opens up possibilities for incredibly personalized gifts before, during and after the collaboration (sales/investment) development process
Next Check-In Date
- Given that all organizations are driving anywhere from 50-200 collaborative conversations at any one time, it’s critical to maintain the momentum
- Always note when the next check-in date is with all collaborators
- Through referencing the list of all contacts with a Next Check-In in the next week or month, you can ensure that meetings are set on the calendar to continue the conversation
Tasks & Actions
- Tasks and Micro-Commitments keep the ball moving forward when designing a collaborative opportunity
- These tasks can be assigned owners and dates to ensure that there is a level of engagement in making something happen
- If tasks are not completed, you can inquire if interest is still present. and if they are, well thats a great sign
While leadership and growth teams can focus on designing collaborative opportunities, your (fractional) Operations team can ensure that your system is being managed and maintained so your organization does not skip a beat or miss out on any follow-ups.
Who in your organization is owning the CRM and keeping it up to date?
If you are interested in exploring how we can help you design a CRM maintains the flow in your organization, don’t hesitate to reach out and setting up a time.
Thanks for reading, Ernesto
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