When and Why

do you need a sales process?

Share on Linkedin

Thanks for sharing!

Little nightly thoughts
by Business Exploration

Dear Fellow Innovator,

You reached Flavio's blog
on Business Exploration.

Let's have a chat:

Grab a coffee

I am always happy to talk
with interesting people.

Is there a time in an organization life when a sales process is needed to survive?

When an organization cannot rely on deals coming from a referral network,
and needs to push itself out of the comfort zone to find new prospects?.

It is not a trivial question. If you build a process that is not necessary,
you risk to freeze the organization ability to pursue opportunities that require nimble and adaptative mindsets.

If you don't build a process that can be repeatible, scalable, you may suffocate the organization,
that lacks of the deals flow required to grow.

The reasons that bring an organization to adopt a sales process could be many.
But there is a time, when it can be unescapable:

When it moves from a "family" to a "clan".

Check this article to learn more,
or give me a call to talk how to setup your sales process.


There are 4 times of crisis for any business:

There are 4 times of crisis for any business:

  1. The Birth
  2. The Family transition
  3. The Clan transition
  4. The Legion transition

They reflect the ability of our brain to handle the complexity of managing an organization.

The Birth

Any good ideas needs to be helped structure itself and prove its value for the market.

Today this critical phase of business organization has been well understood and clear methodologies have been defined to help structure business models in a safer, and less costly way.

(If you need a hand, just check our blog, booklets or ask for our 8 days workshop.)

The Family

When a human organization reaches the 30 persons, the planning and execution of tasks can not be lead by a single person anymore.

This is a time of crisis, where the only way out to a sustainable growth is to delegate.

Build an organization around a core team of “owners” is something that requires a mix of instinct, trust and sound facts-checking practices.

The Clan

If your organization has the ability to win market to grow up to 300 persons, you will start face a new challenge: the chocking of your span of control.

This is the moment in time when the human brain faces its own limitation: recent studies have identified as 300 the max number of interactions that we can personally manage.

Since 300 connections on, each “system”, “organization”, “tool” you add to your connection list requires that you eliminate an existing one.

Do you want to add a new Client? You need to delete an old one. Do you want to add a new “software tool”? You need to delete a person or a tool on your list. This is the time when you start substituting your persons with processes.

From 300 persons on, you need to rely on processes to manage your organization.

Here you face a false choice:

  • go on the market and bring home pre-packaged solutions; or:
  • design processes that are unique as unique is your company.

We know by experience that this is a false choice. Going on the market for plug&play processes and tools is something that has a meaning only for companies that know their processes and want to carve out the max efficiency from them.

But if you do not know your processes you need first of all to design them.

It’s a matter of to be effective. It’s something that requires a strong ability to model your business, map your critical decisions, align them to clear strategic goals and consolidate them with solid KPIs and rhythm.

The Legion

You built a core team, delegating mechanisms, processes; you have been able to coordinate up to 3000 persons. The organization is almost a living being. Almost.

All your efforts have created a team that is very good at responding to known challenges. The market ask, you replay. Effectively and efficiently.

But if you want to continue to grow, your dimension becomes such that you are not “in” the market. You “are” the market. Your size affects the market behaviors.

The only things that can disrupt your well oiled machine is a market change.

If you are the market and something changes the market, it changes you.

This is something that you can handle only anticipating the moves. You have to stop playing tactically and start playing strategically: collect strategic information, build scenarios, understand who are the players at the table and their ultimate goal.

Build strategic reasoning into your organization is the final step and the one that assure your growth beyond the market.

The 4 time of crisis are unscapable

The four times of crisis are un-escapable, because are built in our DNA

These 4 critical transitions are embedded in our DNA. You can question that the crisis does not comes at 30 but at 20, at 150 instead of 300, when it reaches 1000 instead of 3000. But the matter does not change.

The Durban’s Numbers have been identified by the anthropologist Robin Durban. He puts them in relation with the size of our neocortex size, the size of our brain.

There is nothing that we can do about it if not to support it to overcome its limits.

In any organization, overcoming these four critical times requires experience, know-how and ideas. We offer you the persons that can help you handle these transitions, because they not only have done it, but have also identified them and disassembled them into their critical pieces. Solving each one:

  1. The Birth
    with the use of Lean Startup and Go To Market methodologies
  2. The Family
    with the use of Project Management and Coaching methodologies
  3. The Clan
    with the use of Lean Six Sigma and Organizational models
  4. The Legion
    with the use of Strategic planning and Games’ theory approaches.

Building a Sales Process is fundamental to pass the Clan Transition

When the Organization reaches the Clan Transition, processes are no more escapable.

The ability to manage the Clan through few, trustable persons,
each specialized and with their unique talents
crashes against layers of delegation.

The risk that Vision and Mission defined by the Chief of Clan don't reach the members becomes a certainty,
doubled down by the risk of loosing valuable know-how, that should be accumulated and shared

Furthermore the size of the organization becomes so huge
that the luxury to pursue highly rewarding small niches
cannot cope with the shear reality of bringing home
value at scale to feed all the members of the clan.

Searching small jucy fruits can be nice if you have to feed few kids
but you need to harvest crops to feed a Community.

So if you are transitioning to a community of more than ~ 300 members
you should switch your mindset from:

  • Hunter / Gatherer

  • to

  • Farmer

Introduce processes, that are repeatible, scalable and capable to bring value no matter of the specific person in charge of them.

I went through this experience a few times. If you need a hand, call me.

Did you like? Share this article on Linkedin!

Share on Linkedin

Don't miss the next hint: