Time to read: 4 minutes
No Champion, No Deal - Your Quarterback in the Sales Process
One of our most popular maxims at MEDDICC lives the truest - ‘No Champion, No Deal’.
Going into a potential deal without a Champion is like an NFL coach going into a game without a quarterback - you might get lucky, and you could find yourself in a ‘gimme’ situation where you get the deal, but it is not sustainable.
The thing that people love most about MEDDIC is the repeatability and the way it acts as a game plan for sales. MEDDIC is the framework of choice for the most elite sellers for a good reason - the ability to find consistent success and wins.
The best deal winner will know that the most important player in the game of sales is the Champion. This does not mean that this is just one individual in the deal - it can be a group of people as well as just one, so identification and qualification of a Champion are just as crucial as having them fulfill the role throughout the deal. A bad Champion can be so detrimental to a deal. It has been reported that there are over 128 million people involved in the direct selling market for 2021 - there are a lot of potential Champions out there, so you will want to make sure that you are picking the right ones.
What makes a Champion? It’s somebody who holds the influence, power, and responsibility and puts their neck on the line from the side of the potential customer. They are more than just an influence, however.
Avoid falling into the trap that your Champion has to be a person within a C-suite position - anyone from an SDR to a Team Leader can be a Champion as long as they meet the criteria
The final component of what makes a Champion is their commitment and investment in you succeeding in your deal - you should not doubt that your Champion or Champions want you to win the deal and succeed. You can read more about our criteria for a Champion here.
The Importance of a Champion
The thing that makes a Champion so critical to your success is the way they operate for you inside the customer organization. A true Champion lays the foundation for your deal and will sell your product or service on your behalf behind closed doors.
Not only will a Champion help educate you on how your solution addresses Pain within the customer business, but they will also go to length to help you create the game plan around why your solution has so much value.
A Champion will be the leader in many ways - think of all the great quarterbacks in the history of the NFL, like Joe Montana, Tom Brady, John Elway, and Aaron Rodgers - they are all great leaders for their teams and elevated teammates to greater levels of success. A Champion will do this for you in sales, through support and guidance when it comes to identifying the Decision Criteria and Economic Buyer as you work your way to clinching the deal.
The Difference Between a Champion vs a Coach
Mistaking a coach for a Champion can be a huge mistake in your deal. By not having a Champion you lose out on all the power and influence in a deal. A coach can be great for a seller - someone who gives them plenty of time, direct access to buyers, and more, but they will always lack the key influence that a Champion possesses.
The biggest mistake is staying in the mistake - you should always be ready to pivot in identifying and qualifying to find the right Champion for your deal, someone who wants to be in the loop during the deal, who has an allotted amount of time for you and someone who can be led from the customer’s side of the field.
In the end, you need to be utilizing your intuition and knowledge - you have to have no fear, no doubt, and always be putting your Champion to the test to make sure they are the real deal, someone who can help guide your deal to success.
Can You Develop a Champion?
Like in sports, the best prospect is not always the one most ready to go. In the NFL world, quarterback Tom Brady was drafted 199th overall and had a year to learn and develop under the stewardship of Drew Bledsoe for the New England Patriots. When the Green Bay Packers took Aaron Rodgers in the first round, they already had the legend Brett Favre starting - they saw Rodgers's potential and the bigger picture, and after a couple of years of developing Rodgers would come in and lead the Packers to a Superbowl not soon after.
In sales you are rarely going to be served a Champion on a silver platter - just like everything in a deal, you will have to work for it (if you don’t have to work for it, it’s not a deal but an order). It can take time and effort to forge a relationship that helps develop and grow the Champion, and will require your focus on the small yet key aspects of what makes a good relationship - this is the thing that will help maximize your potential in the deal.
The work you put into the relationship with your Champion, the more success you will have during the crucial aspects of the sales process. In the same way, Tom Brady has led his teams to 44 comebacks in the fourth quarter of games, your Champion can help step up for you in the most challenging moments and guide your deal to a win.
You are as Good as Your Champion
Ultimately, the Champion of your deal can be a huge predictor of your success.
Are you willing to put a backup in the most important position in your deal, or are you going to develop your identification and qualification skills to make sure you have an all-star leading the drive when you put your deal into play?
Want to learn more about how you can get the best Champions in your deals? Become an elite seller and find the best Champions here.