In this article, we’ll break down what sales collaboration is and how you can better implement it across your company to boost revenue, enable growth, and create a company-wide sales mindset.
What is Sales Collaboration?
The short definition of sales collaboration is bringing people from different departments together to work on sales initiatives. The goal of sales collaboration is to shift focus from individual sales reps managing their own accounts and instead better align revenue oriented teams in the organization.
In a traditional company, the sales, marketing, and customer success teams all work independently, with their own priorities, hierarchies, and a relatively siloed communication framework. The goal of sales collaboration is to break down these silos and create a structure where all three teams are in constant interaction and align their goals with each other to create a more cohesive, collaborative customer journey.
Why Is Sales Collaboration Important?
Salespeople already depend on the marketing and customer success teams to provide them with support to bring customers in and successfully onboard them. However, there is a noticeable lack of communication and collaboration with these teams in many sales orgs.
When you include more people in the sales process, it gives you a more holistic view of your customers and allows each team to better understand what’s happening at different stages of the customer journey. For example, sales reps can share with the marketing team which pain points are coming up the most on sales calls.
7 Tips to Improve Sales Team Collaboration
Now let’s talk about actionable tips you can use to boost teamwork across the sales team…
1. Create a deal desk
A deal desk is a hub where deals meeting a certain criteria (anything over a $100k contract, for example) are discussed, assigned, and tracked. It’s comprised of an inter-departmental leadership team and is the best way to bring all the stakeholders in your company who have an interest in a deal together in one place.
These stakeholders may include legal, marketing, sales, customer success, and accounting representatives. The deal desk is responsible for aligning all their teams to ensure the deal goes through smoothly and collaboratively solve any bottlenecks that arise.
2. Have managers run a daily/weekly huddle with their reps
It’s a good best practice to have sales managers run a daily or weekly sales huddle with everyone on their team. The benefit here is that it allows reps to hear what their colleagues are up to. They can get insights on what’s working vs. not working and they can help each other when familiar problems arise.
1 on 1’s are helpful, but you’d be surprised at how much your reps can actually help each other out versus just relying on their sales managers to help them troubleshoot a sale.
3. Create a clear process for how sales hands off customers to customer success
One way or another, customer success is a vital part of every deal that is signed. That’s why it’s important to create clear workflows and expectations regarding when and how customer success will acquire a customer from the sales team.
For smaller deals, you may want to bring in customer success early so they have enough time to get a handle on the customer’s needs and expectations before the deal closes. If you have a relatively short sales cycle, there may not be enough time to get customer success up to speed before the handoff.
Getting them involved in the deal discussions buys them critical extra time to ensure everything goes smoothly in the handoff and onboarding.
4. Create a Central Hub of Sales Resources
A central hub of sales resources where everyone can go to find what they need is essential for any sales collaboration strategy. This includes sales enablement documents (i.e. case studies, white papers, and buyers guides) they can search through, sample email templates they can use, and a list of common objections from prospects.
You can design this yourself or use one of many third-party software platforms (like Seismic) designed to create a central repository for all your sales resource data and enable different team members to update these materials and communicate with other teams.
5. Celebrate Wins
Once you’ve got everyone working towards a common goal, you need to make sure that they can all share in victories together as well. Many teams will celebrate big wins just within the sales department, but we encourage you to go bigger.
Create a company-wide Slack channel and build a Rattle automation that triggers in real-time whenever you close a deal over a certain dollar amount.
This makes those big wins a big celebration, and by automating them, you won’t be adding another task to your sales manager’s plate. Sales should be celebrated across the company, not just by the sales team. It helps get everyone excited about sales.
Key Takeaways and Next Steps
So if you’re ready to reap the benefits of a less siloed organization, more productive sales team, and higher growth potential, try putting some of these tactics for collaborative selling into action and see if they help your company.
We mentioned it under the Celebrate Wins tip, but wanted to take a second to expand on how Rattle might be able to help you improve sales collaboration even more…
From Won Opportunity alerts to collaborative reports, Rattle has become an important tool in the modern sales org’s tech stack.
Rattle bi-directionally connects Slack or Teams with Salesforce, allowing you to send alerts based on key actions and give you reps the ability to make changes directly from those messaging apps.
Here’s how some Rattle customers are using the tool to improve collaboration:
PartnerStack has created a #closed-lost channel that has people from across departments in it. A Rattle workflow will post a message in this channel whenever an opp is moved to closed lost, along with the lost reason. This lets the team collaborate and find patterns that might help better the product or sales process.
Terminus created a workflow that helped the operations team collaborate with the deal desk team whenever an opportunity reaches the proposal stage. This timely collaboration ensures that teams have relevant resources to win deals.
LogDNA moved their approval process to Rattle and couldn’t believe how easy it was to get started. Within a day, their team was relying 100% on their Rattle alerts to collaborate and manage quotes directly from within Slack.