- Select a Company to Do the Win/Loss Interviews
- Appoint an Internal Project Leader
- Get the Team on the Same Page
- Get Interviewers Up to Speed
- Gather Win and Loss information
- Create a Discussion Guide for Interviews
- Conduct the Interviews
- Present the Findings
It’s best to use an outside company to do win/loss interviews because respondents will be more open with them.
You need to designate a staff member to be a liaison between your sales department and the external interviewers. This person should understand sales, but be removed enough to be objective. Sales leaders themselves may be resistant to this program because you’re going to be probing sales team successes and failures.
Coordinate a meeting between your sales director, marketing director, representatives from the research company, project manager, and other affected department heads so they can clearly understand the project’s goals and support it.
Once everyone is clear on the objectives, train the interviewers on your products/services and provide them with sales literature. Also, inform them about your sales process. This will help them converse fluently with the interview respondents.
If you use a CRM system, your project manager can collect data on recent sales wins and losses from it. If no tracking mechanism is in place, ask your sales personnel to report on recent sales successes and failures.
The company doing the research should create a discussion guide for the interviews which sets up a framework for interviewing. If marketing, sales, operations, and other affected department leaders approve it, they should be on board when findings come in. Specific areas you’ll want to cover in the guide can be found in 10 Questions to Ask in a Win-Loss Analysis Interview
When deciding who to talk with, remember that those who recently were involved in the sales process will offer the best information during interviews. People who have considered your offering within the last few weeks will be more likely to remember the reasons they did or didn’t choose you.
Members of your sales and marketing teams need to hear the feedback so they can work to improve the sales process. It’s crucial, therefore, to establish a system for delivering timely and uncensored interview reports to everyone involved. The research company should present the big-picture analysis to relevant departments and upper-management while sales people should receive individual feedback.
With the right structure in place, a win/loss analysis program will give you the critical insights you need to refine your sales process and to win more business.