Saturday, March 16, 2019

Sales Engineering -- Quick Question Hit List

Need a direct list of short questions to identify where you fit in a potential solution? Here you go:

  1. How painful is this? 
  2. Who's involved? 
  3. When do you want to solve this? 
  4. What are you doing now? 
  5. How can I solve this?

A short list of considerations: 

  • Your customers buy from people they like. There's a complex vibe going on mixing personality, likability, respect, and trust. 
  • Keep it simple. The more convoluted the answers, the more I start looking for BS.
  • Avoid word games and cliches. Use industry terms in grammatically correct context. But let it go if someone speaks with artistic license as long as the point is made. 
  • Match tone and pace. If I'm tired - don't come at me like a rabid pit bull. Just slow down and chill. If I'm upbeat, then don't bring me down. Match me. Then take me for a ride. Watch experienced Grandmothers. They'll do this with small children, and it works like a charm for adults too. 

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Technology changes. Politics have not.

Excerpt from something I wrote many years ago. Thinking about this now because it's in a chapter I'm updating from nine years ago.

An Introduction to Legislation Related to Internal Controls
The global nature of business and technology has [...created standards bodies]. Participation in these standards bodies has been voluntary, with a common goal of promoting global trading for all countries at all levels. Individual countries have gone further to establish governmental controls on the business activities of corporations operating within their boundaries.

The reality is much more complex than this, as national interests, industry concerns, and corporate jockeying create political drivers that motivate the creation and adoption of legislation at all levels. Politics can have a negative connotation, but in this sense, we simply mean the clear understanding that regulations generally benefit or protect a representative group of people. Nations, industries, and companies have concerns about the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information. Agreed upon standards and legislation is one method of ensuring concerns are met.

The unfortunate reality is that not all sets of requirements are written equally. Sometimes it's the interests involved. Sometimes it's the people. Self-interests, self-promotion, arrogance, inexperience, lack of help, poor communications. These get in the way of results.