Rapid organizational growth through acquisitions resulted in a merger of multiple different global engineering companies, each with different specialties, systems, and sales languages. As a result, internal communication breakdowns often occurred as multiple divisions were involved from project start to finish, adding to the stress of overwhelmed project managers.
Operating in a fiercely competitive, commoditized marketplace, it was paramount that a common selling framework be adopted across the different companies to ensure a consistent approach, yet one that was flexible enough to respect entrepreneurial differences.
Link to Strategy and Executive Sponsorship
Partnering with Strategic Enhancement Group, a Wilson Learning local representative, along with facilitation and learning specialists, a systematic approach was intentionally followed to dramatically increase the likelihood that what was learned in the classroom made a difference in project managers’ job performance.
Initially, discovery meetings were held with each of the company’s business unit leaders. A meeting was then held to give executives from the various companies an interactive overview of the Counselor sales methodology, and a planning session provided a clear linkage to their business imperative to sell value and focus on price optimization. As a result, there was active sponsorship from the top and the initiative was a top priority.
A strong communication approach was also utilized to make sure everyone understood what was coming, how it supported the business strategy, what was in it for them, and exactly what role they were expected to play.
Facilitator-led webcasts were initiated prior to each training launch to give participants an opportunity to air any concerns they may have or ask questions.
Another valuable communication vehicle developed with the client was a “success story template,” now posted on the company’s intranet. Success stories from the field highlight client wins and stories of successful internal collaboration among different divisions when providing solutions to geotechnical challenges.
Coaching and Reinforcement
The Learning Advantage by Wilson Learning was deployed to prepare for, learn, and reinforce new skills and behaviors.
The Salesperson’s Learning Journey provides scheduled reinforcement messages that direct project managers to put new skills to use in real work situations. An on-demand online learning portal allows for instant access to all CSP learning tips, tools, and planners, as well as badging to encourage some friendly competition.
The Manager’s Journey provides sales managers with coaching and reinforcement tips and tools to support project managers. Managers also access the on-demand portal for coaching tips, using the Coaching Playbook to strengthen their skills and ability in supporting their team.
The initial impact evaluation showed a bump of $2.9 million in additional business by nine project managers. A subsequent impact evaluation revealed $5.8 million in additional business by 35 project managers. Success stories continue to roll in and are showcased in the monthly newsletter.