1. says

    Dave, this is a really good post. It echoes my experience in selling and managing complex sales.
    As you have said, you need both the published organization structure and the political, or power structure. Without it, you are blind and not able to navigate the organization.
    Getting this published org chart should be simple – getting the political information means you will likely need an internal coach.


  2. Matt Sharrers says

    Your message is so accurate. Sales forces continue to miss the entire landscape due to not forcing themselves to recognize all the players. And your point about loyalty to competitors continues to get overlooked. Nice reminder of a complex selling must have.

  3. Debi Sauls says

    My company requires org charts within our Account Plans, and we do a poor job of creating and studying them for success. Probably because we have never had an effective tool to use for building the chart. We sell to both IT and Procurement, Operations, Facilities, Line of Business, and partners (hardware, software mfg, resellers, servicers, integrators). You get the picture. A very complex, wide, and deep chart is required. We have attempted to ‘color’ it for the contact’s relationship to us and other parties (champion/opponent, influence/decisions, structural/political). Can you suggest a great tool or a few? Salespeople have a lot to do, and strategy and planning often get pushed down the list for the immediate tasks; IE org charts – if it is not easily created, updated, and accessed. I agree with your comments….it should be a part of the planning for every meeting and activity!