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Key Considerations for Implementing a Win / Loss Program

Consideration One

The first decision is whether it will be designed and implemented internally or using an independent third party

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The first decision you must make when preparing to introduce a Win / Loss Analysis program is whether it will be designed and implemented internally or using an independent third party like Anova Consulting Group. These are the questions that require consideration:

  • What is the best way to obtain candid Win / Loss interviews?
  • Is there enough in-house bandwidth to ensure that the Win / Loss Analysis program will be effectively executed?
  • Finally, is there sufficient expertise in-house to aggregate, analyze and synthesize the Win / Loss data that is generated into actionable insights?

Although some organizations manage their Win / Loss Research internally, such programs are more effective when they are externally administered by a specialized service provider like Anova Consulting Group, which employs market research professionals with finely honed interviewing skills.

Once a decision has been made to implement a Win / Loss project, the next crucial step is ensuring you have executive level buy-in and support.

Consideration Two

The second decision is determining the scope of new business situations that will be analyzed

Another determination you must make when designing a Win / loss analysis program is the scope of new business situations that will be analyzed. Depending on your volume of sales opportunities, it may or may not be necessary or practical to conduct an extensive debrief for every sales situation. Many companies, for instance, focus their Win / Loss Research on their largest and most profitable clients and accounts. They also often decide to focus on certain products or services. Finally, they sometimes prioritize certain market segments or geographies.

Consideration Three

The next crucial step is ensuring you have executive level buy-in and support

Once a decision has been made to implement a Win / Loss Analysis program, the next crucial step is ensuring you have executive level buy-in and support. Without the endorsement and active sponsorship of your senior management, your Win / Loss Analysis is at risk of generating sub-optimal results. Given the breadth of stakeholders within an organization that benefit from Win / Loss Research and the importance of a clean feed of Win / Loss interview data to drive the best insights, “air cover” from executive leadership is a hallmark of a successful program.

A key message that needs to be delivered by executive stakeholders is that the primary purpose of Win / Loss Analysis is to serve as a learning tool – one that is focused on driving improvement rather than assigning blame. When executives display an openness to feedback and willingness to act upon it, this creates a virtuous cycle that reinforces and strengthens the Win / Loss Research process..

Consideration Four

The final step is deciding on the types of questions you would like to ask former prospects

Finally, if you wish to implement a Win / Loss Analysis program, you must decide the types of questions you would like to ask your former prospects. Most Win / Loss Analysis methodologies are designed to not only uncover why a company won or lost business in a particular sales situation, but also to shed light on the competitive dynamics that defined the sales process. Common questions include:

  • How did our sales team perform relative to others?
  • What actions on the part of our team and people made positive or negative impressions?
  • How did the content and quality of our presentation and sales materials compare?
  • How well did we differentiate our products and services from the competition?
  • To what degree did we emphasize messages and behaviors relating to our service ethic that resonated with the decision makers and influencers?
  • Did we fully and adequately address issues and concerns raised by the prospective client during the needs analysis portion of the sales process?
  • Were we too aggressive or not aggressive enough in supporting the prospect’s decision-making process?
  • What would we have to do differently in the future to win this business if we had another shot at it?