Pitch and dump still happens
As we begin an RFP, we ask clients about their previous successes and challenges when hiring suppliers. The number one complaint has been that they get pitched by the senior “A” team, but once they get the account, they are quickly passed on to a more junior team. Sometimes they actually never get to meet the senior team again… Like me, you must be thinking “does this still happen?” Well, it does. We still hear it from clients frustrated by the lack of attention and service they are receiving from their selected partners.
Here are a few tips to help avoid this deception:
- Clearly state in your brief that the supplier should bring the day-to-day account team and be involved in the presentation. Underline and bold to make sure this comes across.
- Request a list of attendees along with title and responsibilities ahead of time.
- Request the team to present their roles and responsibilities directly related to your business if selected (asking for an org chart doesn’t hurt).
- When negotiating your contract, request that the selected account team stays on your account for a minimum period of time. I usually suggest a minimum of 12 months unless the person leaves the company.
- You might also add in your contract that you be involved in selecting the new account team if a change is necessary.
When our consulting team manages RFPs on behalf of our clients, we take the above very seriously. Suppliers that are used to working with us know that they travel in packs. The good news is that we have benchmarked them against many other suppliers and validated that they are a strong candidate based on our clients’ specific requirements. Thus, by the time they present live, they have increased chances of winning the business and are set up for a long-term successful relationship with their new account.
As always, please share your feedback or tips on how you set up your new account team for success and avoid disappointments.
Steph (email@example.com) | @tealbook