I spend a lot of my time helping people sell the software I write. For scalability, this often means teaching them how to sell it themselves. Some of these people are “sales guys”, account executives without the expertise required to implement the system, but often with a reasonable basis of technical expertise compared to a lay person. Others are technical pre-sales consultants, sales engineers, who have some of the expertise required to implement the system, and are there to be able to relate directly not just to the business case for buying the software, but to help technical stakeholders from the customer organization understand the software, and sometimes do demonstrations or implement proof of concept projects. Both roles are invaluable when selling complex software to large organizations. But in order for it to work, people like me, from the engineering and product development organization, have to teach them about the products, so they know what to say.
When I’m teaching people, which happens informally and formally, often times they want to know the questions the prospect will ask, and what answers they should give. The FAQ, as it were, so they can have the answers at the ready. And they don’t just want the technically correct answers, they want the answers that will encourageRead the rest of this entry »