Sales Awards Blog

5 Ways to Prevent Deals from Stalling, From a Stevie Awards Sponsor Provider

Posted by Liz Dean on Wed, Dec 19, 2012 @ 09:55 AM

Scott Anschuetz, founder of sales and marketing consultancy Visualize, a leading provider of the ValueSelling Framework®, shares his tips for ensuring smooth business deals. (ValueSelling is a sponsor of the 2013 Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service, the world's top business awards for contact center, customer service, business development, and sales professionals. All organizations and individuals worldwide are eligible to submit entries for sales awards, contact center awards, and customer service awards. January 15, 2013 is the last day that late entries will be accepted; request your entry kit here and it will be emailed to you right away.)

Scott Anschuetz, Founder of VisualizeWith some reps seeing as much as 40% of their revenue coming in during the last quarter of the year, the recent ValueSelling webinar on keeping deals from stalling was especially timely. For those not able to take part, following are the top 5 situations that can cause a deal to stall or slip, and how to prevent them: 

1. No Business Issue: Lack of a connection to the critical business issue of a key stakeholder
It’s essential to uncover what a key stakeholder needs to address to achieve his or her business objectives. These business issues can usually be found in a variety of sources: websites; operating statements; financial analyst perspectives; peer comparisons; and by talking with individuals inside the company. Thorough research should confirm your understanding of a key stakeholder’s business issues.

There are some questions you can ask to uncover a key stakeholder’s business issues and objectives, including:

  1. “Our research indicates that X appears to be a critical objective for the company. Do we understand this correctly?”


  2. “How does this align with the key objectives with which you have been tasked?”

The question you SHOULD NOT ask is: “What is the #1 thing by which you are being measured?” Because that is ultimately what you are trying to discover.

Although it may take multiple conversations and lines of questioning to refine, it is extremely important to uncover your key stakeholders’ business issues early and to confirm them often. 

2. No “D” in VisionMatch Differentiated: Not being uniquely positioned to address a key stakeholder’s needs
You need to deliver a Differentiated VisionMatch. In other words, you need to uncover problems that only you are qualified to address—and that your prospect may not have thought of—and position yourself as the one-and-only solution provider.

3. No Personal Value: Failing to align with the key stakeholder’s personal value
It is critical that you get alignment with your key stakeholder and understand the power person’s motivations.  Examples of personal value for them could include a promotion, a bonus, increased credibility, or any other kind of recognition.

After you’ve developed an appropriate level of comfort, trust, and rapport with that power person, following are examples of questions you could ask to uncover their personal value:

  1. “What’s in it for you?”  (Open-ended question)
  2. “What kind of impact could this have on your career?” (Probing question)
  3. “Where does this sit on your priority list?” (Confirming question)

4. No Power: Selling below the decision level
The decision-making authority within a company or organization has perhaps moved up a couple of levels in recent years. Ideally, you want to gain and maintain access with the ultimate decision maker. You need to know which person that is: Be careful not to get so tied to any one contact within the organization that you can’t make a move without going through him or her.

5. No Mutual Plan: Not understanding the full sequence of events
Keep in mind that a signed contract is just a stepping-stone to future milestones. Confirm everything in writing, because every written message is another opportunity. Send a follow-up letter or email to your prospect confirming your understanding of the mutually agreed upon set of activities and milestones. We call this a mutual plan. It is a proactive approach to managing the sales cycle, being deliberate in understanding the prospect’s view of "When."

We all appreciate that a stall or a slip in the sales process is actually more expensive than an outright no, so it’s crucial to identify “no decision” situations early—and to be ready to do something about it.

About Scott Anschuetz:
With more than 25 years of direct sales, sales management, and leadership experience, Scott Anschuetz leads, coaches, and motivates sales forces. He combines an accomplished track record of achievement with real world practical applications in leading Visualize, the company he founded in 2002. Visualize trains over 6,000 sales and marketing professionals around the globe at corporations including: Avaya, Siemens, Mercury Interactive, newScale, Symbol,, VMware, Motorola, SuccessFactors, and TELUS. 

About Visualize:
is a leading provider of the ValueSelling Framework®.  Its team of certified associates enable companies to bridge the gap between sales and marketing while uncovering and applying value holistically, utilizing the ValueSelling methodology that’s intuitive, sustainable and proven. Clients turn to the experts at Visualize for consulting services, classroom training in sales and management, and e-learning, yielding immediate impact, repeatable strategies, and sustainable results.

About ValueSelling:
Since 1991, ValueSelling Associates has helped FORTUNE 1000 business-to-business sales organizations around the world compete and win. Generating revenue is the goal of all sales organizations. To do that, sales teams need the right tools, skills, and processes to succeed. ValueSelling Associates has maintained its position as a leader in the industry for nearly 20 years by continually evolving to meet the new challenges sales forces face.

Tags: customer service awards, business awards, Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service, sales awards, contact center awards, valueselling, Visualize, Scott Anschuetz

New Product Categories in the Customer Service & Sales Awards

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Mon, Nov 01, 2010 @ 05:18 PM

One of the big changes/additions to the Stevie Awards this year is in our 5th annual Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service.  In the past this program honored only the achievements of sales, customer service, and call center professionals: individuals, teams, and entire departments.

For the 2011 aSASCS10 Awards Presentationwards (entries are being accepted now through the end of 2010), we've added a slew of new product awards categories in the SASCS.  We now have new product of the year categories as follows (the numbers are our internal categories codes):


90. Collaboration Solution – New
91. Collaboration Solution– New Version
92. Contact Center Solution – New
93. Contact Center Solution – New Version
94. IVR or Web Service Solution – New
95. IVR or Web Service Solution – New Version
96. Marketing Solution – New
97. Marketing Solution – New Version
98. Relationship Management Solution – New
99. Relationship Management Solution – New Version
100. Workforce Management Solution – New
101. Workforce Management Solution – New Version

Read the rest of this article...

Tags: sales excellence, customer service awards, business awards, sales awards, valueselling, sales award, customer service award

Update on 2011 Sales & Customer Service Awards

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Mon, Nov 01, 2010 @ 04:39 PM

I'm getting very excited about our next edition - the 5th - of the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service, the world's premier program of sales awards, customer service awards, and call center awards

Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service PresentationWe had the early-bird deadline a few weeks back and entries submitted through that deadline were up about 25% from last year.  We have another deadline on November 12, and then we'll continue to accept late entries through the end of the year.  (The late penalty is just $35 per entry.)  If you don't have your entry kit yet, get it here.

I wrote the other week about all the new categories we have in the competition this year - check them out on the awards' web site.

Finalists will be announced in mid-January, and the program will culminate with an awards presentation and banquet at the lovely Eden Roc Renaissance Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida on Monday, February 21.  Some people have asked why we would schedule the event on a holiday (it will be President's Day in the U.S.A.), and we did that so that attendees can make a long weekend of it in the sun and surf of Miami Beach, without having to miss full day in the office!

Today I'd like to welcome ValueSelling Associates back as a sponsor of the 2011 Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service.  ValueSelling president Julie Thomas is a long-time support of the Stevie Awards, and we're delighted to have them back.  

From their web site: "ValueSelling Associates is the creator of the ValueSelling Framework, the sales methodology practiced by sales executives at FORTUNE 1000 companies around the globe. Through customized classroom instruction, e-learning, train-the-trainer and consulting, ValueSelling will arm your sales force with strategies, skills, tools and processes to:

  • Increase revenue
  • Access and dialogue with executive decision-makers
  • Increase forecast accuracy
  • Eliminate discounting
  • Increase deal size"

We have several sponsorship slots still available.  To learn more, get our 2011 sponsorship guide.

Tags: sales excellence, customer service awards, business awards, sales awards, valueselling, sales award, customer service award