5 Questions You Need to Answer to Avoid Slipped Deals

avoid slipped deals

It’s a few days before the end of the quarter. You’re on track to exceed your quota, and you can already feel the breeze on your upcoming Champion’s Club cruise to the Caymans.

That’s when the phone rings. It’s the Champion at one of your biggest accounts. He sounds tense, and you know what’s coming before he even says it:

Management has decided to wait until next quarter. The money just isn’t there at the moment.

You’re joy disappears right alongside that cruise.

Down the hall, you see your manager congratulating the top sales rep in your office for another record quarter. What’s he doing that you’re not?

He’s probably answered the following five questions that let you avoid slipped deals.

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How to Better Close Complex Deals

Scoring a complex deal goalClosing large deals is the World Cup of sales.

Your first $1 million-dollar deal won’t let you sleep at night. You’ll be running in circles coordinating all of the people, tasks and information you need to close.

And it only gets worse as you get closer to D-Day, the final decision, where you find out if all your effort was worth it or not.

No matter how senior you are, large deals ask everything of you and change your life after your first big win. Your confidence, recognition, and compensation all transform overnight.

In our efforts to help sales professional everywhere, we have put together a summary of best practices that will help you close complex deals faster and more effectively.

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sales playbook

How a Sales Playbook Can Help You Find Business Insights


97% of B2B customers rate a sales rep’s ability to offer unique and valuable perspectives as among the top drivers that led to closed deals. Coming in close at almost 90% is the ability to educate the client and help them avoid landmines within their own industry.

In other words, sales reps who challenge & teach their clients with business insights are shooting well past the competition.

The question is, just where do we find these insights?

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improve sales performance

How On-the-Job Coaching Can Improve Your Sales Performance

On the Job Coaching

According to Neil Rackham, 87% of sales training content is lost after 30 days. How can you stop this loss of investment? Are there better ways to improve sales performance and knowledge?

I’m sure you’ve experienced this before: your employer spends hundreds of thousand of dollars to get all customer-facing sales reps together and ‘brainwash’ you on the latest product updates, sales techniques and SOX-compliance rules.

You spend 10 hours a day in a room with no daylight, using your breaks to make return calls to your clients and prepare your forecast by Friday, only to come back the next day (maybe a little hung-over from a night at the bar) and repeat the whole thing.

By Monday morning, you’re lucky if you remember about half of what was covered. And, according to a study by Neil Rackham, 87% of what you learned is lost within thirty days!

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A New World of Sales

Until recently, customers seeking business solutions had to ask suppliers for guidance early in the purchasing process, because crucial information wasn‘t available anywhere else. But today customers are better informed than ever before. By the time they approach suppliers, they generally have a clear idea of the problem they need to solve, the solutions that are available, and the price they‘re willing to pay. In this world, process-driven sales machine approaches fall short, because they give sales reps no room to exercise judgment and creativity in dealing with highly knowledgeable customers. The new environment favors creative and adaptable sellers who challenge customers with disruptive insights into their business and offer unexpected solutions.

a new world of sales


3 Reasons Why the MEDDIC Sales Process Works


Did you ever give a thought why pilots go through rigorous checklists before they start the engines and take off? That’s right, they have to be 99.9% sure they are setup for success, as even small issues could have big impact. Once they’re airborne, there’s no option for failure.

Similar to a pilot, MEDDIC gives you a checklist for every sales stage, giving you a health check for flying a deal to closure. Just like a pilot, you’ll be able to quickly understand your chances of landing successfully, and might even consider to step back and take another plane. While the pilot saves a lot of lives, we in sales save a lot of very precious time by planning to recover early to succeed in the end and close more deals.

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Asking for the Order Is a Closed Question

It doesn’t matter if you sell into Enterprise Companies or Small and Medium Business, we sales people do a hell of a job preparing the decision making, support clients to understand their benefits and show them how to get the quickest return.

Still, we seem to have a big issue harvesting on all the hard work we have done and ask for the deal. The most common perception is that sales hate to get a “NO”. Here is an interesting video with a different opinion.


MEDDIC Checklist

Your MEDDIC Sales Process Checklist

Your MEDDIC Checklist

There’s no doubt:

MEDDIC as a sales process has helped many sales teams around the globe to achieve extraordinary results.

Statistics prove that 30%+ growth rates in saturated markets and 250%+ in start-ups are possible. In fact, many salespeople that touch MEDDIC will never again work without it.

Fast-paced companies like Workiva, MongoDB, Alfresco, Snowflake and many more have build a healthy pipeline and forecast on the fundaments of MEDDIC.

Read on to get a brief overview on this simple and lightweight qualification process.


Here’s the basic MEDDIC checklist:


MEDDIC checklist
MEDDIC QualifiersExplanation
MMetricsWhat is the economic impact of the solution?
EEconomic BuyerWho has profit and loss responsibility for this?
DDecision CriteriaWhat are their technical, vendor and financial criteria?
DDecision ProcessThen what happens? Define validation and approval?
IIdentify PainWhat are their primary business objectives?
CChampionWho will sell on your behalf?



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Some Tips for the Right Sales Attitude

Cultivate the opportunity

  • Determine if the opportunity is worth the investment of time
  • Hypothesize about new ways to engage the customer
  • Infer the scope of the opportunity on the basis of limited information about the customer

Asses the customer’s receptivity to insight

  • Make informed assumptions about the customer and its needs
  • Identify atypical sources of information about the customer and its assumptions
  • Exercise patience in order to allow an opportunity to develop

Challenge the customer’s thinking

  • Judge when best to engage key decision makers and other stakeholders
  • Adapt the approach in order to generate buy-in
  • Asses the worthiness of the pursuit on the basis of the customer’s reaction

Build consensus

  • Tailor responses to stakeholder’s highly varied objections and reactions
  • Creatively determine ways to revive stalled deals
  • Encourage and arm key stakeholders to influence detractors

Close the deal

  • Asses the buying group’s understanding of what differentiates the solution from the alternatives
  • Know when to stand firm or acquiesce in negotiation
  • Identify negotiation points beyond terms and conditions