The Company and the Situation:
I met the CEO of this company from Montreal, Canada at the FounderX 2016 event for graduates of the Founder Institute in the Silicon Valley in the September / October time frame. She had just graduated and was telling how she was planning to get into revenue 6 months later (at the end of Q1 2017). Why? Because her software platform was not yet complete and would be only in Q1 2017. But! … they had identified 600 prospects and knew exactly to focus on.
Listening to her amazing business narrative, I knew she was solving a real problem people had in the market, so I asked her if she wanted to get into revenue in the next 90 Days i.e.; before Christmas. Her response … a resounding YES!
- Forget about the 600 identified prospects. Pick only 10 prospects that you know well enough to request a meeting without full explaining the offer until you met face to face.
- Meet each one of them and ask them if they suffered with the core problem your primary offer provided a solution for.
- For those who had a funded initiative to solve this problem; ask them if they would allow you and pay you to solve it.
- Proceed to solve the problem manually (since the new software platform was not yet ready) and provide a solution to your customer to their full satisfaction.
- Get paid.
The Result and Benefits:
To the CEOs credit, she followed this 5 Step process and got three of her prospects to give her an opportunity to solve their problem.
- This gave her a tremendous opportunity to identify severa deeper and subtle issues that she did not know existed with her customers.
- She got to include in the software as it was being developed.
- She got tremendous first hand experience understanding her customers even better.
- She started getting a reputation as a problem solver in this core niche of hers.
- She got t talk about her success which accelerated her growth when she did get her software platform up and running.
Most importantly, she got tremendous boost in her confidence levels, because she now had a deeper understanding of what her customer problems really were and what solution they really wanted. She ended up pivoting because of this experience and started closing a ton of deals.
She has subsequently gone on to win several awards for startups, she has spoken all over Canada and the world as a matter of fact. She has got funded a couple times and is now one of the Top 100 fastest growing companies in Montreal Canada.
I still mentor her and her sales team on a regular basis, helping them overcome challenges and help them focus on the deals that matter.