An Anecdote on CRM Decision Making

I had a great media brief this morning with a new upstart British online publication called Sales Pro. I like their model, because it is less about technology and more about enabling sales professionals to do their job better. People in this business too often forget that at the heart of CRM, there’s people.

The reporter asked me about selling CRM, and if decision-makers sometimes reject CRM under the notion that “our sales processes are far too complex for a CRM system to manage.”

This made me laugh at first, and then as I thought about it, I realized that the opposite is usually the case. What I man is that it is usually pretty easy to state the case that someone with a lot of complexity in their operations needs to automate their processes. These firms tend to “get” the need for CRM pretty quickly.

Now, it is the other end of the spectrum, the guys who feel that their sales processes are too simple for CRM, that are hard to convert. These sales managers usually say things like “we get leads, we make calls, we close deals…end of story.”

But if you actually dig deeper, and ask a sales decision maker some simple questions, like “how do you get your leads?” or “where do your best leads come from?” – the conversation can take an interesting turn. Especially among smaller sales organizations, the lack of visibility into these areas of business is huge. And until now, a lot of smaller firms didn’t have options when it came to low cost, low risk software…

3 thoughts on “An Anecdote on CRM Decision Making

  1. I think this stems from the thinking that it takes time to learn and eventually become familiar with the CRM software. BUT I do agree that the lack of visibility into these areas of business is huge. In my previous company, I had the opportunity to introduce SugarCRM software and it brought a lot of good things to us, especially in terms of managing leads and streamlining communication.

    Thanks Macel – always good to hear CRM success stories…-ms

  2. It is funny to see that there are managers (a lot of them) still think they are special. So special that Customer Relationship Management will not work for them. It is not about the software, it is about the relationship you build with the customer. CRM, the tool helps to bring order to the chaos. The managers that do not want CRM are the same that complain about not knowing what their pipeline and crappy forecasts from sales.

  3. And, even more illuminating for me, is *how many* companies still talk about internal processes (etc) in the context of the CRM. The clue is in the first part of the acronym, people …

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