Voice technology to optimise your sales process

Your voice is the most important tool of sales! Not only do we rarely talk about the big question is how could we scale your own voice or the voice of the company? Peter Staveloz, ceo of Ireachm,  joins the Sales Accelearation show to discuss how you can leverage voice technology to accelerate your sales.

Listen to the podcast or read the full transcript below.


Leverage Voice technology to optimise your sales process

Michael Humblet:
Welcome to the Sales Acceleration Show. My name is Michael Humblet, and I’m the Founder of Chaomatic.

Michael Humblet:
In this show, we only talk about getting skills, making more revenue, and going faster. One of the things that always comes back is, “My sales guys do not fill in CRM.”

Michael Humblet:
I’ve invited Peter. What we’re going to do is have a very different angle to CRMs and all the sales tools around it. I’m going to talk about voice.

Michael Humblet:
So, tell our viewers what you do.

Peter Staveloz:
Thanks for having me, Michael. My name is Peter. I founded Ireachm three years ago.

Peter Staveloz:
Typically, what we do is we build digital assistants.

Michael Humblet:
Digital assistants?

Peter Staveloz:
To increase productivity for, for example, for sales teams. That’s our core business.

Michael Humblet:
So, what do I have to imagine? You told me a story like, you get the number, you can phone them up. There is a bot. Tell me a bit more, how can you help customers? Why would I need it?

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Well, it’s quite simple. A couple of years ago, the first thing we did was see what was the most time consuming tasks that sales people are experiencing today. Typically, it’s like, filling in CRM, missing calls and making calls. We made a list of the most typical things they lost time with.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Then, afterwards, we went into a small room, a black room, and I said, “Okay. How can we help them by using technology?” Quite quickly, we came to the typical sector of digital assistants.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
We’re trying to build a digital assistant for sales guys who don’t need to fill in their CRM anymore. They don’t need to handle all of their calls.

Michael Humblet:
How does it work? You have some use case, you were telling me some use case. Maybe you give one, so we really get it?

Peter Staveloz:
For example, you just did a meeting with a prospect. You come out of your car. What the first thing you need to do? You need to fill in your CRM system for follow up or whatever.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Typically, you call the CRM bot as we call it, and from the car, you actually dictate what you want to have in your CRM system. It’s as simple as that.

Michael Humblet:
It writes it down in the CRM system? Next actions, all of that?

Peter Staveloz:
That’s it.

Michael Humblet:
You could actually call back if you want to?

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
All of that?

Peter Staveloz:
You can actually imagine everything that you can write by hand or type by hand into a CRM system, you can do it by voice.

Michael Humblet:
Technology is strong enough to do it? I know a lot of frustration of guys at Dragonspeech, and all of these technologies, they get really frustrated. “Yeah, Michael, but I mean, come on, it’s not really working.”

Peter Staveloz:
Well, there are two things. Each bot needs to learn.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
It’s a matter of learning, it’s machine learning, its artificial intelligence. It takes, maybe, three to four weeks, and afterwards the bot gets to know you.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Knows which words you use, how do you pronounce them. We give context, also, to the questions, which means that they know all of your products, all of those things.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s educating the bot.

Michael Humblet:
If I have to choose a company … Let me ask you some tough questions.

Peter Staveloz:
Okay.

Michael Humblet:
Just thinking out, if I would want to buy this.

Michael Humblet:
I have a Chat Bot.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
Can I combine them? Should I have only the Chat Bot? Should I do both? Where do you position yourself in that industry?

Peter Staveloz:
Well, we position mainly in the field of voice. Why? Because we saw that a lot of sales people are in the car all day.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
In the car, the only thing you can do before we were born, was calling people, which is a very time consuming task and everybody is doing it.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
Besides that, we want to give them the possibility, also, to fill in their CRM system.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
that’s typically when they have time, when they are in the car.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Filling in CRM is a big issue.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, for sure. For sure.

Michael Humblet:
Every customer I go to, they all complain about it.

Michael Humblet:
For me, I see two main reasons, by the way. One of them is that when I’m in sales, I go to the meeting. I’m thinking about high transaction type of business. I go to the meeting, I come back, and I lost so much time. I need to fill it in, I fill it in the book. It’s just crazy.

Michael Humblet:
Another one, of course, is a lot of CRM systems are just bad. As in bad interface, it doesn’t make sense, very management oriented. That’s a whole other topic. That’s why we get guys that make CRM on the show.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
I’m just thinking about the voice. I think it would be a fantastic idea. I never even thought of it, sitting in the car, being social, talking, saying, hey, let’s fix it like that.

Michael Humblet:
What are other things you can do? I’m trying to flex my mind around this. I think it has a lot of potential.

Peter Staveloz:
Typically, what other things you can do with voice capabilities … For example, we just did a project for a bit client of ours who is in the business of kettles.

Michael Humblet:
Kettles? What do you mean?

Peter Staveloz:
Heating kettles.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, okay.

Peter Staveloz:
What you have in your home to make sure that it’s warm.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, yeah. The heating.

Peter Staveloz:
The heating.

Michael Humblet:
You see we’re not engineers?

Peter Staveloz:
Oh, no, we’re not engineers.

Michael Humblet:
The heating stuff.

Peter Staveloz:
The heating thing. The things that make us hot.

Peter Staveloz:
On that case, one of the things is that a lot of their clients were calling sales people when they had technical issues.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, that’s a big one.

Peter Staveloz:
Oh, you sold me something. It isn’t working, you need to be here.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
One of the things we did is that we put a bot on their mobile phone that actually understands the reason why people are calling them.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
If they see, okay, this is a guy calling for a technical intervention, the bot would automatically notify the technical service.

Michael Humblet:
But, you do it on the voice? Or, like, press two for-

Peter Staveloz:
No, no, no.

Michael Humblet:
That’s the horror.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, that’s the horror. We have different ways of doing it.

Peter Staveloz:
Here, it’s a use case where you hear the voice mail of the sales guy, but afterwards, the voice drop he does, so the voice mail he does-

Michael Humblet:
Ah, yes, like that. Yeah, yeah, sure.

Peter Staveloz:
– the bot says, oh, I understand it’s for a technical intervention. He sends automatically an email to the technical service with the client in copy, and the sales guy in copy, to say he needs an intervention.

Michael Humblet:
Because the worst thing that can happen is that your sales guys, your expensive sales guys, get stuck with support calls.

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely.

Michael Humblet:
That happens because he’s the only contact.

Peter Staveloz:
That we had … for example, Worldline is a very big client of ours, same thing. They sell those little payment terminals. The butcher on the corner calls them to say, “My thing isn’t working. What the hell?”

Michael Humblet:
I need it now!

Peter Staveloz:
Now. [crosstalk 00:05:49]

Michael Humblet:
He’s right, he’s right.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, absolutely.

Michael Humblet:
[inaudible 00:05:52] is not going to wait.

Peter Staveloz:
[inaudible 00:05:53] is not going to wait.

Michael Humblet:
It’s true.

Michael Humblet:
That’s a really good … So, then the magic is actually, when I’m a sales guy, I should never pick up my phone, then?

Peter Staveloz:
What the bot actually does as well, is he understands during the conversation, for example, that it’s related to a sales related topic, it can also send a message afterwards with some slots that the guy can call back.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s scheduling your agenda.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Different possibilities, different possibilities.

Michael Humblet:
I mean, at home because I’ve been digging into voice, also podcasts. I was thinking about for sales, it must have such potential. It’s hard to get them to shut up, right? That’s the essence. It’s okay, because we pay them for that.

Michael Humblet:
If I really think, then, if I have one of those Alexa devices at home, or … I mean, you have multiple. If you start combining it, you could come to the home office, start talking to the thing, and it would start picking up.

Peter Staveloz:
To share a little secret, we just bought two Google Homes for our office. My dream is that I could talk to Google Home and say, “Hey, I need to fill something in my CRM system.”

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s question easy to do because, it’s Google Home is only an interface.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s-

Michael Humblet:
It’s the app concept, probably? It hooks up to-

Peter Staveloz:
It’s an API that you can connect to the Google Home platform.

Michael Humblet:
Exactly.

Peter Staveloz:
I’m not technical at all, but I was told that.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah. I just find it so inspiring.

Michael Humblet:
Do you have other use cases? I like that one, that’s a really good one.

Peter Staveloz:
For sure.

Peter Staveloz:
One of the things, and that’s an important one as well, is that we’re digging into … It’s voice driven, but it’s also data driven. We’re digging into email sending as well.

Peter Staveloz:
One of the things you see is that if you look at all the emails you send out, you can find a red threat with typical emails that you send out, multiple times per day or per year.

Michael Humblet:
Then, you think of creating the template, and then-

Peter Staveloz:
Voila.

Michael Humblet:
Try to figuring workflow, technical stuff.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s it.

Peter Staveloz:
One of the things that we’ve built now is that you can say, “Hey, Google, or whatever. Hey, Nicki, as our bot is called. Can you send three dates to Michael for planning a meeting?”

Michael Humblet:
You hook it up with your agenda system?

Peter Staveloz:
Yes. It’s hooked up with your agenda system, it’s hooked up with your contact list. You will receive an email saying, “Hey, Peter asked me to schedule a meeting. These are three slots.”

Michael Humblet:
Let me challenge you again a bit.

Peter Staveloz:
Okay.

Michael Humblet:
Does this work in all languages at the same quality?

Michael Humblet:
One of the issues is my name, it’s actually a French sounding name, Humblet. If I ask, and I’m a lot online. If I ask Alexa, “Who is Michael Humblet?” Then, I get Michael Buble, the singer.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s not bad.

Michael Humblet:
Everybody in the world … Not bad, but I get everybody –

Peter Staveloz:
At least you’re very hot.

Michael Humblet:
Well, yes. [inaudible 00:08:32]

Michael Humblet:
I see a lot of struggles, and especially when you go to customers. There’s so many variations in names and all these little details. I feel that’s where I’m still, I’m sitting on my hunger still.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s the reason why we link with contacts lists.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
What you actually do when you give a voice commandment, there’s an audio file sent out. Besides the audio file, also send, not the get too technical, an Excel file with it saying, these could be words that you could find in this text.

Michael Humblet:
Ah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
What we actually do is that when I say your name, Michael Humblet, he will look into my contact list and say, I have a probability of 89% that it’s this guy, so I’m going to send it with it.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s accuracy.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s like your car.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, yeah. That makes sense.

Peter Staveloz:
I don’t know which car you drive, but most German cars, for example-

Michael Humblet:
It’s a German one.

Peter Staveloz:
-you have voice control. Yeah? Every sales guy drives German cars.

Michael Humblet:
It’s efficient!

Peter Staveloz:
It’s efficient.

Michael Humblet:
No.

Peter Staveloz:
No.

Peter Staveloz:
Actually, the same is in your car when you say, “Call Michael Humblet.” It’s the same logic you will see in your contacts list as well, and it makes a suggestion.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, that’s how you narrow it down.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
I think it’s the only way, because if you have to look at the whole database of the world, it’s just going to be crazy.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, no. You need to narrow it down.

Michael Humblet:
So you’re actually at the front line, at the sales, removing a lot of operational cost and increasing speed, if I hear it?

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely.

Michael Humblet:
I like the … Actually, for me the cost would be less, it would be avoiding double work.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
Which is annoying, and you take the speed to velocity. In a lot of deals, when I look at buyer plans, it’s always the same thing. They are slow because they forget, or they’re not … Could you actually set it up, just to figure out if the technology goes that far? You know the agenda, the meetings between three and four. The bot calls you and says, “How was the meeting?”

Michael Humblet:
That would be really scary, but I can imagine that would be, if I had … If I would be selling these small products, I really want to be tight on the process.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
It’s very different than relationship type of selling.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, I understand.

Peter Staveloz:
No, technically it’s possible, that’s no problem. The big challenge in the beginning was, when does the meeting end?

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, of course.

Peter Staveloz:
Everybody sets a meeting, one hour, or one hour and a half in his agenda. The only thing you know 100% sure is that it’s wrong. It will never end after one hour and a half.

Peter Staveloz:
It can actually also detect movement. Based on your phone, you can see, okay, he’s moving so his meeting-

Michael Humblet:
Let’s call the sucker!

Peter Staveloz:
Let’s call the sucker now! You can even have …

Peter Staveloz:
We had a question on that. You can even make the bot call with the voice of their boss.

Michael Humblet:
Really?

Peter Staveloz:
You could make a recording of that, and make it. Damn, it’s my boss calling me.

Michael Humblet:
That would be scary. The CEO, you get him and he just keeps shouting.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s a typical joke you get in every project we do. “Oh, could you get the voice of Alain, on this?”

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s-

Michael Humblet:
You should get the voice that sounds like God. What’s the guy’s name? Morgan Freeman.

Peter Staveloz:
Morgan Freeman.

Michael Humblet:
That would be the voice, the ultimate voice.

Peter Staveloz:
What was your meeting like?

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Okay, so you do that. Actually, at the other end, you also take away the pain of … I can imagine that’s field services would be a dream for this.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
You’re actually a layer on top of the app.

Michael Humblet:
I know a lot of companies trying to sell apps through field engineers. You could actually layer on top of that.

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely.

Michael Humblet:
And just make the process faster there.

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely.

Peter Staveloz:
My biggest dream, and I think that’s something we need to work on together is that you could actually have a bot coaching your people on the road as well.

Michael Humblet:
That would be good.

Peter Staveloz:
You actually … You’re the end of the meeting, and you call your bot, and he’s challenging you on the meeting.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Was there a budget?

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Who did you talk to?

Michael Humblet:
Like, the qualification criteria, stuff like that.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Let’s do a challenge. This year –

Michael Humblet:
We’re going to do that.

Peter Staveloz:
We make a Michael Humblet bot.

Michael Humblet:
So, when you’re watching this, if we have the bot, and you can phone Michael, and I’ll be guiding you through your deals. Oh boy, you better be good because I will find you, wherever you go. I know when your meeting ended.

Michael Humblet:
That’s really scary. Okay.

Michael Humblet:
So, how did you come up with the idea actually?

Peter Staveloz:
Very simple.

Michael Humblet:
I mean, I’m a lot in these rooms with beers, and I have ideas every day. I’m just wondering, why voice?

Peter Staveloz:
Well, very simple. My background, I have a background of 10 years in the call center business. I actually trained and coached, let’s say, people on the phone, being able to sell more. That was my core business, so I was always passionate about voice.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
The typical evolution that you see is that a lot of call centers are looking into digital transformation.

Michael Humblet:
Of course, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Voice and speech to text capabilities are-

Michael Humblet:
A lot of this sentimental stuff I really like, sentiment analysis.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Which is really scary. This guy is angry, you need to talk like that. The script starts moving around and all that.

Peter Staveloz:
Certainly, in a coaching environment it’s very interesting.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
To be able to say, okay, this is a conversation that is going the wrong direction. As a coach, you can intervene.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
These are interesting.

Michael Humblet:
The one issue I potentially see there, of course, is that you have many, many parameters.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
In a coaching conversation, it’s tough sometimes.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, that’s true.

Michael Humblet:
You think, ah, that’s his problem, and then you have to ask him three times. Oh, no, it’s something completely else.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah. There, we must be frank, is that you need to know the boundaries of voice as well.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
The boundaries are the moment you go into contextual analysis, artificial intelligence, and so on, and so on, the cost of setting that up is way higher.

Peter Staveloz:
We mainly focus on those repetitive things.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Schedule of meeting, if it’s in your business, in my business, whatever. It’s always a date, a travel time, and certain other parameters, but it’s always the same.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
In contextual analysis of voice, that’s much more difficult.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s not something people are investing in already today. Investing in bots as well is already, oh, science fiction.

Michael Humblet:
I wanted to say, I can imagine your job currently is a lot of education.

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely.

Michael Humblet:
I mean, a lot-

Peter Staveloz:
I’m a priest.

Michael Humblet:
You’re a priest, evangelist.

Peter Staveloz:
Yes. I’m an evangelist.

Michael Humblet:
A lot of people just don’t know it’s possible.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
Then, I think there’s a lot of resistance against the technology.

Michael Humblet:
I mean, I was amazed when I got the Alexa at home. I was amazed. My kids, after one hour, they were asking, playing, they were making jokes, they were 10 times faster. Now they’re angry at me, because I put one in the bathroom. In the morning I come down and say, “Hey Alexa, play music.” Sometimes if I have a bad WiFi it doesn’t work, they get angry at me. You’ve killed my friend! No, I didn’t do anything.

Michael Humblet:
It’s Telnet, it’s not me. Blame somebody else.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, that’s-

Michael Humblet:
I think there is also a big gain where you can actually move it a bit into the private …

Michael Humblet:
My dream was always, I come down to the bathroom in the morning, I brush my teeth, and I would like to have my, what’s my day going to be like? I would get the brief. Then I would, ideally, if i really think through, I would want to be able to react and say, “Move that, or cancel. Today, snow, really bad. Move it, cancel it.”

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Do this, or get a message.

Michael Humblet:
Can you also do the text stuff? If you ave voice, you very clearly have a number, technically meaning you can do text and start moving that around? A lot of people, especially our generation, we don’t do the picture thing, we do the text thing still.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
You could imagine … we had a demand from a client that who was saying, “Okay, could we talk to the bot and they prepare certain emails?”

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Okay. You can also say, okay, send a text message. This is actually … I think that’s one of the features that Google Home is already doing, if you link it with your Android phone.

Michael Humblet:
Speech to text almost?

Peter Staveloz:
Saying, can you send a text message to Michael Humblet?

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
They’re already-

Michael Humblet:
I think Apple actually does it.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Send a text-

Peter Staveloz:
I’m an Android user.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Sorry about that.

Michael Humblet:
I got stuck on these guys.

Michael Humblet:
It doesn’t’ matter, actually. Technology [inaudible 00:15:53].

Michael Humblet:
I can imagine your business, then, started to grow quicker and quicker, more questions. I think the biggest problem was the first name, this is the reference, and then people trust it?

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely.

Peter Staveloz:
Getting the first name, and boom. We get a big VC company on board. Proximus is going to resell our solution, as well.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, of course. Very nice.

Peter Staveloz:
Which helps in terms of credibility.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
They can be, let’s say, evangelists now.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s, indeed, the most difficult part.

Peter Staveloz:
The thing that we did is that we gave free demos.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
We gave [inaudible 00:16:24], just try it. Okay, it’s working.

Michael Humblet:
I remember your speech … It’s funny because you didn’t put on the sound.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
I don’t really remember because a lot this, when you do speeches, sound doesn’t work.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
You basically had text, like a chat, chat.

Michael Humblet:
I told in the beginning, oh, it’s Chat Bot! They said, oh, no, it’s voice.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Not possible. It’s the only thing I was thinking.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah, yeah, sure. Would be nice.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, but it’s trying to pass on the message, and people knowing certain contexts. It doesn’t work! They think, oh, it doesn’t work. That’s the biggest challenge today.

Michael Humblet:
Really cool. We’ll do this Call Michael. See if I can beat you.

Michael Humblet:
Okay, so near the end of the show.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
I always ask some tough questions.

Peter Staveloz:
Okay.

Michael Humblet:
One of them is, how do you keep focus? I can imagine you have many, many people coming to you and asking you, can you do this, can you do that, can you do that? You know it’s a problem because you have a limited amount of engineers, of course, to do certain things.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
You probably don’t have the VC budget of hundreds of millions to do whatever you want.

Peter Staveloz:
Not yet.

Michael Humblet:
Not yet, getting there.

Michael Humblet:
If there is a VC … No.

Peter Staveloz:
Good question. That’s a difficulty.

Peter Staveloz:
I think every entrepreneur is creative, and he sees opportunities everywhere. I think one of the main things is that we have a very good operational guy internally, and he manages the road map.

Michael Humblet:
That’s strict?

Peter Staveloz:
It’s strict.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
The things that come on the road map, are purely put in there through our customer experience process.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Which means that we can’t develop things that we like ourselves.

Michael Humblet:
No.

Peter Staveloz:
We need to develop things that came in as questions from clients. We typically have a ranking. 20 clients ask for this, 20 clients asked for that.

Michael Humblet:
So you do like what they call product boards?

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
One of the big issues that sales is always complaining. The big question is, do you develop a feature for a new customer to get the deal?

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
Or do you develop the feature for an existing customer that wants to stay? That’s a tough one.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s it.

Michael Humblet:
Then you do a product board. Put them all together and say … I like it because you make a joint decision.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Michael Humblet:
Then there is never the conflict of saying, Yeah, but. No, you agreed on that moment. We have three months, we have limited time. Like it.

Michael Humblet:
How do you say no, then?

Peter Staveloz:
Well-

Michael Humblet:
How do say no to people that you don’t want to do business with because you know there’s going to be trouble?

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
In the beginning, that’s always the difficulty. In the beginning, you don’t have 100 clients, so every job that you see you try to jump on it.

Michael Humblet:
Yes, we can do this!

Peter Staveloz:
Absolutely. Then, it goes wrong.

Michael Humblet:
So, you are a sales guy, typical sales says yes.

Peter Staveloz:
There’s a reason I’m very pleased with my colleagues who are saying no to me.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s actually the answer to the question. I have a lot of ideas-

Michael Humblet:
Get somebody else to say no.

Peter Staveloz:
Get somebody else to say no. Find people that aren’t scared to say no.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That’s-

Michael Humblet:
That’s very engineering. I used to take pre-sales guys and engineering guys to a meeting, and I would say, “Yeah, we can do all of this.” Then, the guys are like, no, no.

Michael Humblet:
Actually, I had one guy saying, no, I’m not lying like Michael. I’m like, what the hell? We got the deal because of him, not because of me.

Michael Humblet:
No, I actually think it’s a very good trick. Let others say no.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
You can be the angry guy.

Peter Staveloz:
I screwed up two times. It was like, I can’t say yes anymore.

Michael Humblet:
You’re in the blaming game. My team …

Michael Humblet:
I like this technique of you asking me a question, and then I go silent. I look at you and you go, no. That’s a good one, too.

Michael Humblet:
So, what’s the biggest mistake you’ve done in the last three, four, five years with the company? Or even before? Where you said, it’s something I did, and I should have done it differently. I should …

Peter Staveloz:
One some levels, going too fast. Somebody said, you need to go fast.

Peter Staveloz:
In the beginning it was very simple. We had a product that nobody was looking for because it was innovative. You need to be out there, and you need to be an evangelist. At that time, we actually spent way too much marketing budget on going out there, we go all the way. Everybody needs this.

Peter Staveloz:
At that moment, we should have spent less marketing budget, but more build the product, go into operational excellence, then afterwards scale it.

Michael Humblet:
Or even something I see sometimes is that, I think in your case, is build the product but get a really, really good, solid demo.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Most of the time, they either go really sales or really marketing. I’m thinking, guys, the only thing you have to prove is a really solid demo.

Peter Staveloz:
Mm-hmm (affirmative), I agree.

Michael Humblet:
I get your point. I think you’re right.

Michael Humblet:
It’s tough?

Peter Staveloz:
It’s very tough.

Michael Humblet:
If you’re fundamentally sales driven, you want to go faster, faster, faster.

Peter Staveloz:
You’ve already sold the thing before it is developed.

Michael Humblet:
But that’s the way you should do it.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, yeah.

Michael Humblet:
I was with a company, two years of engineering, lots of money, no customers. Then, they said to me, “Michael, we want to sell. We have three months and then our money is gone.”

Michael Humblet:
I said, man, your sales cycle is nine to 12 months.

Michael Humblet:
“what are you saying?”

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Do you have a demo?

Michael Humblet:
No.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s painful.

Michael Humblet:
Where do you get your inspiration? What do you read, what do you watch, what do you do to –

Peter Staveloz:
Well, to be honest, you’re my biggest inspiration.

Michael Humblet:
Of course, of course.

Peter Staveloz:
Of course, that’s logic.

Michael Humblet:
When I have the bot … When you make the bot for me, you’re going to listen to it every day, right?

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, yeah.

Michael Humblet:
Oh, thank you.

Peter Staveloz:
[inaudible 00:21:22] Michael.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Inspiration? Well, it’s actually quite simple. I’m quite uncommon. It’s not that I have a book or a person I look up to or whatever, for me the biggest inspiration is the team of people that we brought together, and seeing how they evolved, and how they treat the product and the company as their own.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
That, for me, is very inspirational because now it’s them coming with new ideas. Can we do it in that way? Can’t we do it in this way?

Peter Staveloz:
90% of our company are Millennials.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Which means we attracted very young people, with, let’s say, a typical entrepreneur drive.

Michael Humblet:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Peter Staveloz:
Wanting to take responsibility. We try to invest a lot in creating an ecosystem where they come up with new ideas, where they come with things.

Michael Humblet:
Ownership, you’re giving them ownership.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, ownership.

Michael Humblet:
I think it’s key. It’s key for growth.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, for sure.

Peter Staveloz:
That inspires me a lot. They are client of the future.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Peter Staveloz:
Which means that they’re already thinking about interface and whatever. I’m just not a Millennial anymore.

Michael Humblet:
You’re an old guy.

Peter Staveloz:
Yeah, I’m an old guy.

Peter Staveloz:
There you see that they come with other insights that I couldn’t have had. That’s my biggest inspiration source, the people themselves.

Michael Humblet:
So, where can we learn more about you and your company?

Peter Staveloz:
Well, let’s say we’re setting up a YouTube channel now.

Michael Humblet:
Really?

Peter Staveloz:
Someone inspired me about that.

Michael Humblet:
Good idea!

Peter Staveloz:
Very good idea.

Michael Humblet:
This could work.

Peter Staveloz:
This could work.

Peter Staveloz:
We’re launching a new website in two weeks, where you can actually play around with demos on the website.

Michael Humblet:
I think that would be cool.

Peter Staveloz:
It’s very auditive and very visual.

Michael Humblet:
You can get some very … I would actually go really, just the number. The number, phone it, and it unlocks the rest. You could hire me as a consultant for this.

Peter Staveloz:
Sure. Make me an offer.

Michael Humblet:
Yeah.

Michael Humblet:
So, be sure the check out the bot coming soon. I would absolutely check it out. For me, this was really an eye opener. Most of the time, tougher than this, but I really wanted to know all the use cases. I see so much potential.

Michael Humblet:
If you like what you’ve seen, give it a thumbs up, subscribe to the channel. He has a new channel very soon coming, so have a look at that.

Michael Humblet:
I’ll see you next time for a lot more.

Michael Humblet:
Peter, thanks for coming to the show.

Peter Staveloz:
Thanks a lot, Michael.

 

2019-09-30T22:36:12+02:00April 28th, 2019|

About the Author:

Michael Humblet is obsessed with designing, building and scaling sales engines and founder of Chaomatic, focused on unlocking & maximizing revenue growth trusted by over +207 companies. He is a seasoned sales strategist who served in different Sales Leadership functions. Michael Humblet is the host of The Sales Acceleration Show, the sales and marketing focused Q&A show on how to accelerate your business.
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