What I do:
What I did before:
Director, IT PMO, Lowe’s Companies
Why I became an Emissary:
I was actually recruited by Emissary. What I found really interesting about the company’s concept was that it gelled with what I used to do, except I was on the other side, reviewing SOWs from software, hardware and networking services providers for Lowe’s. This was a chance to see and understand it from the vendor’s point of view.
The number one question clients ask:
“Do you understand our service based on our presentation?” which is usually followed by “Who are the key players at Lowe’s?”
The number one question clients should be asking:
One thing every client should be asking upfront is “Do you believe our services are actually needed at this company?” Fortune 100s or higher already have plenty of software, services and methodologies, and it’s very probable they just bought something similar to what you’re selling. The likelihood of them swapping out what they’ve just implemented in order to go with a new product is extremely low. As an emissary I can provide that information, and it allows the client to redirect before they spend their resources pursuing a dead end.
Best win, so far:
I had one client who had all his presentation materials in pretty good shape when he came to me. So I provided him with some soft introductions at Lowe’s, and when Lowe’s indicated they’d like to proceed forward, I gave the client an overview of their budgeting cycles and where, when and how he should move forward based on where we were in the fiscal year. They’re now in the middle of discussions, and he reports it’s going well.
Why companies need Emissaries:
Many sales teams are still making the mistake of taking a wine-and-dine approach with their prospects. It might work at a few organizations, but not many. It makes so much more sense to spend that money on someone who actually has the inside track on the prospect’s culture and decision makers and can vet your product for suitability. To me, that’s worth a lot more than trying to take someone out to a golf tournament.
What I’ve learned as an Emissary:
I am all about networking and meeting other people, because you never know when you need to actually go to someone else and have a conversation. So understanding new and upcoming technology from people who have niches in these spaces, understanding their approach and their positions, actually helps me.