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Three Lessons in Customer Relationship Management

Below are three pieces of business advice that I believe are really important, and I always come back to them, especially in terms of Customer Relationship Management (CRM). They really tie in with the core values of business too.

“Perfection takes infinity.”
“Strategy + Execution.”
“Ideas are free, execution is priceless.”

So, how exactly do these little words of wisdom relate back to Customer Relationship Management (CRM)? Well, I recently finished a sales process consulting project with one of our clients, Mandalay Technologies and I took away 3 key things that tie back to the above principles:

1. Start big picture then break it down into manageable chunks

The CEO, Product Development Manager, Business Development Manager (BDM) and CRM administrator presented some huge goals for their Salesforce.com implementation. We all agreed (fortunately for all our sanity!) that we’d start with the sales process and if that went well, we would then start looking at other aspects of the business.

2. Get the language (mostly) right

Across several sessions and reviews, we realised the importance of using language that the staff were already using to describe aspects of the sales process. There was going to be enough change without making the staff rote learn a whole new vocabulary that meant nothing to them! In fact, it is important to make the most of the type of language already used within the company – it can be a real positive. (I’ll explain the “mostly” part in the next paragraph.)

3. Execute then refine

We went through the project, mapping processes, implementing them into the CRM, identifying documents, defining fields and language. We always came back to using language and processes that were already relevant to the company. It was great fun and I felt like we’d hit the nail on the head. So I was ready to present the final deliverable to the Mandalay team.

I see it as a victory that when I presented the beautifully designed final version of the processes and implementation, I was hit with another round of questions, with some new points of view and ended up scribbling all over the final deliverable, adding one last step and changing the language of the final 2 steps!

Reflecting on it, I really enjoyed working on this project because it highlighted 3 of Bluewire Media’s core values:

1. Strategy + execution: We had a huge vision, then got started on a small piece of it.

2. Communication: Talking through the processes then getting the language right will be critical to the system being useful.

3. Continuous improvement: Even at the final deliverable there were things to be refined and perfected. The ability to adapt and change processes right up until the end will make a huge difference to the finished product.

Toby Jenkins co-founded Bluewire Media in 2005 – a Brisbane web design company. He keeps on top of the company’s finances and is an internet strategy and business processes consultant, as well as a popular keynote speaker and MC. To learn more about Internet Strategy call Bluewire Media on 1300 258 394. http://www.bluewiremedia.com.au