The B2B Revenue Executive Experience
The B2B Revenue Executive Experience

Episode · 4 years ago

John Fairclough on 5 Ways Sales Is Changing Forever

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

“Front and center is that we're people first,” John Fairclough said. Making sales to clients or to companies staffed with professional buyers isn’t easy because most sales teams aren’t people-focused.

John Fairclough shares 5 techniques for recentering sales on what matters: building relationships with people.

You're listening to the BDB revenue executive experience, a podcast dedicated to helping executives train their sales and marketing teams to optimize growth. Whether you're looking for techniques and strategies or tools and resources, you've come to the right place. Let's accelerate your growth in three, two, one. Welcome everyone to the B Tob Revenue Executive Experience. I'm your host, Chad Sanderson. Today we're talking about creating a world class culture, how that impacts the service you delivered to clients and how you really need to be selling who you are and not vaporware or some promise that the rest of the organization can't deliver. To help us, we have John Fairclaus, CEEO resucom, a company focused on enabling customer experience through construction and facility maintenance, a different side of the C X Equation, which we've all heard me talk about before. John, thank you for taking time today and welcome to the show. Thanks for Hamringy Jen. All right, let's start with the obvious, and how did you become CEO Res Acom? And just bit of background in context, especially around you know what Resucom does. Sure, thank you. So I started resucom about twenty years ago and prior to that I had worked in some family businesses. All my families in the trades and generation before me in the generation for them, and it helped one of my uncle's grow is construction business and his painting company, and from there I went on my own and they of it a shot, cable to go and it's been wildly successful. It sounds like it's been a fun twenty year right. That's so. RESI come has an interesting part to play in the customer experience of Band Brand Protection area. On My background, I spent ten years selling CX digital services. How do you merge digital and physical spaces? And you guys really focus on the actual construction and maintenance of those physical spaces. So as we were prepping for the podcast, you mentioned wanting to touch on culture and how it impacts the services you provide and kind of curious why that topic and why now? Well, the services that we provide to retailers are really to help them protect the shopping experience and so it really got us focus in and understanding what the designed experience is and then what steps can be taken to protect it or to enhance it. And so all kinds of different projects have come our way to manage the smell of the store and one of our clients just to go around and spray Cologne bottles and then they found that manager spring too much or two little, so they installed blowers so that the scent was consistent right. And so just addressing all of the senses of the shoppers experience and the role that they play and purchasing, so understanding that the whole person is involved in the shopping decision and paying attention to that. Well, then we really better know what it is that we want to be and when we go out and sell ourselves and pitch our services, we need to make sure that that it's true the promises that we're making we can keep. We've just found that it's super important for the culture of the company to really encourage and promote working in alignment with what we promise well,...

...and so you've got a couple of things that I want to want to touch on some retail. Obviously a lot of attention on the retail sector right now, especially with stores that, let's say, didn't invest in their experience a lass years and stores like that, and then you have the higher end stores. You say the Colonne thing is funny. I walked into an American Eagle outfitters one time and had to turn around and walk out because it was just the scent was overpowering. So completely understand how those little nuances play into that. I'm curious how do you work with your sales teams or your you know your people are out there building those relationships. How do you work with them to make sure that they really understand all of the nuances that goes into a true design and construction of a physical space? Well, the clients bring us in to execute what their vision is. So they may have made a determination that hey, if we change the color of our walls to light gray, that that's going to make it a more comfortable environment for our customers to linger and if the longer they linger the more they buy, or or some other researcher or something that they've done. So we help them execute the test. Then they derived the data from that and then go out and maybe roll that out fleetwide. So we're involved on that piece of it, as well as any other ideas that they want to try. I mean it's harder to do things better, faster and cheaper if you're not trying something new. So we get involved in a lot of those prototypes because we understand that that's what we're doing. Our mission here is to try to find ways to better connect and as you're doing that, it's a theory and by prototyping and Beta testing you're proving out the theory. That then gives you the green light to go forward with a project. And so when it comes to our sales team, basically we call the client advocates and their role is to understand the objectives of the client and then bring those back to our team to look at from a bunch of different perspectives to provide something of value to them. So it goes the step beyond just the typical hey here's a spect go build my stores. It's really a collaborative it's almost a blend between the services side and the execution side of it, working in collaboration with a customer to make sure that their vision that they have is actually the right vision, because maybe they may have some of the wrong ideas. It's not wouldn't be unusual, I think, some of the cases I've seen. But then making sure that your sales people, your advocates are with them. Are they with them all the way through the process? Well, sure, and so most of our accounts we don't really get hired on a product by project basis. We have accounts that we land that we then take care of the projects as they come up. So we have an ongoing GIG rather than a product specific type of relationship. Typically that relationship is really one were regularly reviewing our clients. I mean we're dealing with some of the most sophisticated buyers in the world right. I mean our clients are recognizable names and every their household names. So when those companies are buying services, we're dealing with a professional buyer. We're not dealing with someone that this is something that they do with five or ten percent of their time.

A lot of times these people are in charge of millions and millions of dollars. So we have to bring value to them and to do that we better understand what their objectives are and then provide options that will meet that. And again, everything is this push for better, faster, cheaper. We call it smarter. You know, everybody wants it better, faster, cheaper, and you probably can't tell me, but I'm dying to ask and if you don't respond to the question then then I'll leave it alone. But the new McDonald's they just unveiled in, I thinks, CHICAGO, that everybody's saying looks like the apple store. Well, suppose you guys were involved in that one. We were not, but it's pretty cool what they've done. It was. It was amazing, right. It was an amazing evolution of that in store experience with Donald's kind of playing with that a little bit, dealing with also the health issues, right, so the totality of what they sell in the environment in which you're experiencing it. It was an interesting unveil, at least you're an outsider standpoint. So Tesla imitated the model as well, so that the whole apple store experience is what Tesla went out and pursued on its own as well. Apple has some of the highest sales per square foot. I think it is the number one sales per square foot retailer out there, and so anytime we are a leader like that, people are going to look at what you're doing and look to copy it or to hire your people away so that they can implement the same kind of thing. And there's a lot to be said for the attention to detail and that shopping experience, and you better believe this part of the culture of the people that are working there. Where ever, everybody is zoned in on that and as you can figure that out, amazing things can happen. And if McDonald's is successful in this, I mean imagine you're talking about a business that's built around minimum wage employees. If they can deliver an outstanding they really know how to deserve the liver consistency, if they're able to up the game in the shut in the diners experience, I mean there's great opportunity to head for them. Without a doubt. We I mean you see it all the time, right when you in sales, in sales enabling the stuff that we do. We call it sales rd. so we rip off and duplicate from each other when somebody's got a great idea out there and it works, course you would expect, you know, it's the greatest form of flattery, as they say. You mentioned it focusing on the details, and so we're talking about the details of physical space and all of that. I'm curious how do you enable your sales teams or or your advocates to work with customers and pay attention to the details of the process and the impressions that they're making, because that consistency of brand and experience be what you sell. kind of stuff that starts from the first interaction all the way through, you know, execution and assessment. So I'm curious what you found you over the twenty years of building the company, what's been really successful in helping those advocates understand that they also need to be paying attention to the details of how they're interacting with their prospects and customers. Great, great question. So we're people first. You know that times we forget that. We just follow this process and check these boxes and good things can happen. But like there's laws and then there's like the spirit behind the law, or there's a process us and then there's a spirit behind the process. We spend a lot of time focusing on the spirit behind the process. So we know that...

...the only reason why people should hire us is if we can deliver great value to them. If we can't deliver a great value, they shouldn't hire us. So why don't we focus and if they do hire us when we can't deliver a great value, there's probably not going to be the longevity that we're looking for in the relationship. So if we by focusing on the value at the front and to deliver value will that all comes down to people, and so getting our people to understand why we're doing what we're doing is critical. So we have a process. When we have the the reach out campaign, we don't want to just send an email that says, hey, we're interested in providing the service for you. Give us a call. We actually want to go visit their locations. We want to have something insightful to share and there. So it takes a lot of research and then there's a custom message just for that person, based on where they may be a work for or based on things that are inside of the store, and we call out why we're a great fit right in the opening paragraph, as you know, because of your geographic presence, so where they're located, the finishes they have within their store and and how important the in store shopping experience is to them. Because of those three things, this is why we think you're a great fit and why we'd love to talk, because this is these are some of the results we've had with companies like you being that specific on it is demonstrating that this is our space right, that we can bring value with her, we can make a meaningful difference and our whole item that we're trying to get across the people is that together we can a lot more value out of your budget, and so that's really everything for us is around saying that. So we take the stuff by step process that the different reach outs and all that. We use it as a way to educate our people on why each of most questions are, each of those items is important, so that we have a more prepared, a more informed advocate out they're representing our company. I'm going to can that you just summed up everything that we talked about all the time when we work for clients and I love it. It brought it literally brought it to to my eye, because most of the salespeople out there, we train them on product or service or whatever it is, and we unleash them and then we're surprised why all they want to do is talk about their product rather than take the time to understand the person that you're approaching, their perspective and what they may find valuable, and that's I think it's extremely powerful. It seems like you guys have tapped that equation and seeing the success as a result of it. Thank you. Got A lot of great people working, I think. And so, okay, twenty years we've been growing the company. What things have you learned from a cultural standpoint to keep the employees, you know, engage in the vision, create the perfect environment to get, you know, the most out of employees while you also simultaneously rewarding them? What kind of things have you uncovered or lessons learned around Culture Development? Appreciate the perspective that people have and what they bring to the table, as well as the timeline of the work that they're working on. One of my big struggles has always been around the people that have short term time horizons. So if we look at project managers, they're looking at that one project, as they should. That's their attention and if you don't deliver well On that one project, well then you're putting the relationship at risk. So they have a...

...very narrow focus. The challenge for me has been, well, we've got some long term objectives and for a long time I didn't I didn't recognize the difference in points of view. I knew I had the winning argument because the long term health of the company, it would never do anything in the short term that would compromise it. But without looking to the long term we really can't decide how we should handle the short term. And if we just give short term the ability to do whatever they want, well, they might not be doing things like cross training others. Right. I had this test in the company. I said, Hey, who wants the best person in the company to work on every project? You know that comes away, and you know everybody raises her hand. And then I said WHO wants? Who wants only one person that have any experience working in a project? Reserve US one too doing it, and no one raise her hand, you know. So you go back and say one side do you want it, one side you don't. The key to management is going to be to reconcile those two to execute the short term with the long term in mind. Now, sometimes we can't do a lot of the things for the long term because the short term is urgent. Maybe there's some problem situations that we're dealing with. However, we cannot ignore the long term. So the biggest thing, and I didn't mean to spend so much time on it, but the biggest thing, the biggest challenge that I have found and I found in other business owners and leaders has been the lack of recognition around time horizons for the people and then all the subsequent problems that the all out of it. Said, challenge right, you've got to focus on the customer needs today, but also focus on what's going to be best for your company, the person, the individuals in the company, as well as the client long term, even sometimes when the client can't look past, you know, the next deadline. That's what is key, I think, to you know long term relationships and mutually beneficial relationships with customers and clients. So, as we were prepping for this, you mentioned the importance of terminology in an organization and I wanted to dive into that. Sit's something that we talked about a lot when we work for clients. Love to get your perspective on the importance of specific terminology and the organization. To simplify the language, you reduce the heirs of it. I love it. And how do you guys go about doing that? Well that it's a deliberate action. Right. If I'm calling something a ticket, you're calling you a work order. Someone else is calling your project and we need to reduce our language so that everybody understand what's been said, and so building glossaries per client. So we have our rather kind glossary, but then each of our clients we build the glosstery because we have to follow the terminology that they use. And so one company might call it a wardrobe or someone else calls it a closet, someone else calls it a shelf. I mean, everybody's got a different name. So we need to know what that is and then be able to support the people that are off there any business. I mean, if you're looking to drive value, you got to get down to the technician level, the person that's doing the work right, and if you can figure out how to make it easier for them to be successful, you're on the path to optimization. It's just where the savings can be and if you can find a way to make it easier, you're what makes it easier for knowing what you're talking about, giving them clearer instruction, you know, so all the preparation, then supporting them during the project, being available, answering questions that...

...they have and whatever minor issues are there. And then, if they face a problem, provide the guidance to get under them. You know, we don't want to leave people up to their own devices that are inexperienced that resolving that issue. To make the call. It's real simple. If you're not going to make the great decision, shouldn't be the one making the decision. Hold on all these things that make sense, you know well, and I find that I find extremely refreshing because the simplicity. I often talk to companies that have created these extremely complex sales processes, not for the service of the customer or for the sales team that has to execute them, but more just as justification for the existence of sales I mean, at least thanks to the current political climate, we're not the most, you know, hated individuals of the planet. I think politicians and lawyers have a speed right now, but most people see sales professionals as a necessary evil, and so that complexity builds itself in as a way of justification. But when you get right down to it, as you mentioned earlier, people buy from people and simplicity and that language, if you can speak their language, build credibility that you did your homework, that you want to make sure they're successful on their terms instead of expecting them to change to the way you see the world. I love it. I love what you just said. Really comes down to. People are so worried about looking right at we're all about being right. That's would be the quote. That's going to be your quote. Shows up of the graph effects. I love it. I love it. I know. I know exactly what our producers are going to pull out. That's perfect, excellent. So when you look back over the last twenty years, you've learned a lot of lessons. But we're in a really dynamic environment, especially in retail. So when you look for the next you know, five ten years forward, what do you see on the horizon that both excites you and maybe causes a little constern nation for the future? resucum. Wow. Well, so, if res it comes proven anything over the last twenty years, it's that it's resilient. So we've evolved multiple times, both from a size standpoint, like as we grew, you know, we had to let go of some services that we provided. A just change all of that and I believe that that don't just continue. And we used to be one hundred percent self performing company and then we evolved into being more of a broker, because we found that we could scale up and down much more quickly and we found what was really great about us, and what's great about us, is our ability to get it right, to understand the objectives, to solve the challenges that are in front of us and make it kind of fun to go through the process where people want to be a part of it. So actually, one of the things that we talked about is people buy from us because we're easy to buy from, that we're cool to deal with. So, with those kinds of things being our makeup, it's not really about the services being provided as is about the people that are delivering the services. So, yeah, as retail evolves, it's going to be back like it used to be. There used to be the great stores, the grow fine stories, the Boutiques, and then there were the the companies that offered everything, and that's kind of what you see going on in the brick and or space, because there are always going to be the people that want to go try on those expensive items. A lot of women like to go and see what they look like in the mirror and have that at whole experience and get together, and so that stuff...

...isn't duplicated online. Maybe the goods transferring from the store to the home. You know, maybe that you know. I mean we can see what Amazon and in its great growth and things, but it's not for everything. And I believe that people that are selling things that people want to interact with physically before purchasing. I believe you're going to see an incredible increase in attention to shopping experience. So you see it in the mobile device store. If you go in there, there's people all over you. Yeah, I mean there's no there's no easy replacement for a total experience. Right the end, you can augment it with digital. I think that the transfer of goods, I think is a great thing that Amazon does. If I know I need a dog leash that allows me to walk my two dogs simultaneously, I don't need to go into a store. I didn't need it because my dogs are driving me nuts. But if I want to go buy a mountain bike, there's a store here, I mean Denver. There's a stores off of Denver that has an amazing experience from the second you walk in the door to, you know, test riding the bikes, to buying the accessories to, you know, going out of the store. They have it really fine tune and it's enjoyable. It's enjoyable to go there. It's not like I got to go buy a bike. It's is an experience that we talked about with friends and family and other people that we meet. So the ability to do that and have, you know, at access to companies like Resu come I can do that, think's going to be part of what's going to set retailers apart in the future. Sure, hope you're right. All right, let's change to actually a little bit here. I ask all of our guests kind of two standard questions towards the end of each interview. The first is simply you're a revenue executive, you're the CEO, so people are going to be coming at you all the time to try and sell you things. So when somebody doesn't have a relationship with you or they don't come through a referral, what do you find to be the most effective way for someone who wants to get in front of you to build the credibility necessary to capture fifteen or twenty minutes your time? I like it when it comes through that they know who they're dealing with, that they know who they breach out to. So the cold, I mean I'm going to be to be and and mic clients are the things that we buy, we buy a lot of, right, and the things that we sell, we sell a lot of. So we're not us. We wouldn't be a small account for most people that sell on us and the accountant we sell to. We're not only to be a small account, we've got a narrow market. So with that in mind, to me the most important thing is to know who you're talking to or know where you're reaching out to and demonstrate that in your message. Like John, I've seen that you have this or that and like connected something that I have, and then give me a really being an intriguing problem statement. You know not. Hey, would you like to save more my okay, you know that's hot. It doesn't work for me, not in my area. Now for other niches, but I'm a professional buyer of services, by a lot of them, and I'm a professional seller of them. We sell a lot of them. So the kind of thing wouldn't work with me. But give me something intriguing and it doesn't. I mean I've had email else that I responded to on solicitation for people have misspelled things and have things cap I mean all of the cardinal sins. I've responded to those emails because behind all of the fluff was the...

...guy had something that was intriguing to say and he knew who he was talking to. I like that. So I'm not a guy. I'm wearing jeans and a tshirt right now and this is the way that this is the way that I go. Excellent. All right. Last question. We call it our acceleration insight. There's one thing you could tell sales, marketing professional services people, one piece of advice that, if they listened, you believe would help them hit their targets blow out their quotas. What would it be and why? I love that. You don't like the can responses. You know I love it. I really think front and center is that we're people first. We are people first, and we all want to do good work. We all want to make a difference, and so when you're worried about how straight your tie is and how you know, make sure that you look polished and all that. If you're not, that's not who you are. Don't be that. Be who you are. So whatever all the good in you should be conveyed out there. When you're being your true self, it comes through. It's passionate, it's not over the top, it's real and people can feel it. They know when someone's being real. So my recommendation would be that everybody matters, you know, in different areas, right. So it's not I don't mean like anybody can do this job. Know, if your skill set is in developing relationships and caring about delivering value to the other person, then maybe sales or some sort of management is good for you. But I can't take anybody off the street and tournament into a salesperson because I'm that process dependent. So number one thing would be who are you? What are you really good at, what do you really care about, and make sure that you're sharing that. And that's what I would say is know who you are and accept it, embrace it and let it shine. Parfect John. For listeners interested in talking more about Rescom or topics that we've talked on today, what's the best way to get in contact with you? The best we would be to email me. John and Rosa, come onlinecom excellent. I can't thank you enough for taking time to be on the show. It's been great having you. Thank you so much for Hammy jet. All right, everybody that does it. For this episode. Please check us out of BB REV exaccom. You know the drill. share the episodes of friends, family's CO workers. If you like what you hear, drop us a review on itunes. Until next time. We have value prime solutions, which you all nothing but the greatest success. Are you concerned about hitting your revenue targets this month, quarter or year? Your answer is value prime solutions a sales training and marketing optimization company leveraging the value selling framework. visit www dot value prime solutionscom and start accelerating your results. You've been listening to the BB revenue executive experience. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe to the show and Itunes or your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time.

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