June 06, 2019

When Sales Wants to Overextend Servicing Capabilities —You Still Must Deliver

Brent Flanders

Brent Flanders
Founding Partner/CEO/Tapyness

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It’s imperative to adopt the mantra “there is no NO only HOW” to assist closing a sale while still defending the integrity of the business.

Leading a global enterprise Services team for over a decade, one is faced with many challenges. Ensuring the customer base is ultimately satisfied while consistently delivering a large portion of the organization’s profit margin, are just a few.

One of the most unique aspects of achieving both is understanding the vital role that Services plays in the sales process. It begins with Services consistently educating Sales on the capabilities and value propositions in place. Despite achieving success on this front, there are moments—end of quarter, edge of quota, strategic needs—that place Sales and Services in a strained position. “We can close this deal, IF”.

Those IFs can be complicated and difficult to address. Yet the Services team must derive a palatable solution for the Opportunity, while not overpromising the organization’s abilities. Furthermore, this has to be done without risking pricing standards, value propositions, intellectual property and not setting precedents that will be impossible to deliver long-term.

Always remember, revenue is the lifeblood of any organization, from startup to enterprise. Without it, there is no means to accomplish the mission, build a culture or enjoy fruits of the journey—whatever those fruits mean.

Therefore, it is essential to build into a Service team’s DNA—when Sales wants to outkick your coverage—the immediate answer cannot be NO. Rather, negotiations need to proceed to understand the details of what Sales needs to promise to get the deal. Because the deal needs to get closed.

While not rocket science, the process requires understanding on both sides. Sales needs to explain the Opportunity’s requirements while Services reaffirms their capabilities and the value proposition in question. In the end, a workaround solution must be achieved, with give and take from both.

It is possible to remove impediments from closing a deal while protecting the essential elements of the overall organization.

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