Do you have opportunities in your sales pipeline that aren’t moving? Are these opportunities stalled or stuck? There is a long list of reasons why an opportunity might not be moving. Here are of some of the reasons that opportunities stall and some thoughts about how you can get them moving.
1. No Compelling Need to Change – Business Challenges
Everyone needs a reason to change (and in this environment they may need more than one); reasons that are measurable and compelling.
These stuck opportunities are both the easiest and the most difficult opportunities to move. Ask yourself, ‘have I done a great job building a compelling value proposition?’ If the answer is no, then doing so can get them back on track pretty quickly. However, if they are stalled because your solution doesn’t create enough value to make it worth pursuing, they can be much more difficult to move forward. It’s possible you have prospects on both ends of this spectrum.
If you can restate your value proposition then do so clearly and concisely and create a compelling case. Understanding their real business challenges is the best place to start. If there really isn’t enough business value being created, then your only way forward may be to work with your client to build a more meaningful opportunity by understanding their business challenges more clearly. Or, it may just be the right time to move on to other better opportunities. Don’t be afraid to move on to better opportunities.
2. Changed Priorities – Lack of bandwidth
In the business environment where change comes faster and faster every day, it isn’t uncommon for your prospects to change their priorities quickly. Sometimes deals with great promise can stall because clients changed priorities, or simply due to a lack of bandwidth for anything but the most urgent priorities.
Getting these back on track requires you to attach your value proposition to their new highest priorities. This is easier said than done, requiring deep knowledge of your client’s pressures and changing objectives. And sometimes you will have to go as far as creating an entirely new solution that better meets your clients changed priorities once you have discovered what they are.
3. The Status Quo
Nothing kills more deals than the ‘status quo’.
The status quo has your dream client company wired in every way. It has complete consensus throughout the entire organization, and its defenders are legion. The status quo isn’t defeated easily, and often not without a strenuous and sometimes prolonged struggle.
To reinvigorate stalled opportunities captured by the status quo requires working deep within the organization to build consensus. You must create value for every stakeholder, at all levels. You need an internal champion willing to do battle with the enormous forces of status quo. This can help you regain the momentum and get your opportunity moving.
Paying attention to the factors that are stalling your deal is the best way to begin addressing these issues and start making progress toward closing the deal. Check back soon for a discussion about more ways to manage stuck deals in Can You Manage Your Stuck Sales Deals- Part 2!