Prod Decisions

The most compelling software in the world prods decisions.

While on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, Salesforce you have so many decisions for hundreds of data points. Every piece of content has a myriad of decisions to take ranging from favoriting/liking, commenting, retweeting, blocking, replying, updating, or clicking, just to name a few.

If you’ve built an application around an existing work flow that people do now in an inferior way, that application will get better with every feature that prods the user to make a decision.

The difference between B2C software and B2B software is that those decisions have different motivations. Great B2C software finds the emotional/social fit that motivates the most important decision, first: logging into the application. When was the last time you logged into Facebook vs. Twitter vs. LinkedIn vs. SnapChat? Sharing an update on LinkedIn likely has much different motivations and rewards than sharing a funny video on SnapChat. Regardless, there are so many decisions possible for the user of each software. Of course, these are billion dollar companies with extremely baked products.

For an early stage entrepreneur, find one feature that prods a decision in the work/userflow specific to your industry. If it’s a decision valuable enough to the business, you’re on to something.

In the B2B world, many times the decision is driven by management with different motivations. For example, how many sales reps crave data entry into SFDC? Yet, the business needs this valuable data for reporting, pipeline management, forecasting, automating tasks, and structuring schedules. Yuck, who wants to be forced upon a process? Senior leaders in the company who purchase Salesforce have made the decision that the benefits of having everything mentioned prior is more important than a few sales reps unhappy about data entry.

As companies continue to consume the enterprise, B2B companies that find ways to prod decisions within their application will be the stickiest.

For example, at Rivalry, there is a list of about 5 major decisions that a sales manager needs to for us to be a worthwhile application.

Decision #1: Does the sales manager want to coach and improve their reps? | Studies suggest sales managers should spend 75% of their time coaching. If a sales manager doesn’t want to coach their team, there is little use for us.  If the sales manager wants to coach their team, they will use Rivalry.

Decision #2: Does the sales manager want to have conversations around improvement? | Coaching is so unique. Within the same company, you can have two types of managers: a Bobby Knight type and a Coach K type. Some managers have no desire to coach through listening and understanding. Many have the mindset: “if you don’t hit your number, you are gone.” In Rivalry, we’ve built the product for both types of managers. For Bobby Knight we have live leader boards and daily emails (making that number very visible). For the Coach K types, we have weekly or monthly briefs where the manager and rep can facilitate conversation all around their development and improvement.

Decision #3: Does the sales manager want to follow up week in and week out on mutually agreed upon deliverables? | One of the hardest jobs with coaching is holding yourself and the reps accountable. Most currently do it through a notebook of some sort…if at all. Rivalry’s deliverable feature makes knowing what you agreed to the week before simple and easy. It’s up to the managers to decide to use this feature or not.

Decision #4: Is creating a culture of coaching and accountability worth it to the business to increase rep happiness, performance, and profit? | Read this study by Sales Executive Council on all the benefits of sales coaching if any data is required to answer this one for you. (PDF)

Decision #5: Is there a clear and justifiable ROI for the price of Rivalry?

These are the 5 major decisions that occur when we talk with any sales manager about Rivalry. Rivalry constantly prods decisions at the sales manager and sales rep level. I truly believe the best software prods decisions in your workflow.