There have been a lot of methodologies that define various steps to form a plan that needs to be completed in order to move forward. This will often lead you into a situation wherein sales activity does not give any guarantee of progress in the buying side. This is where a mutual action plan comes in. This is considered to be a powerful concept that enables you to establish an agreement between the buyer and the seller. This helps in the progress of buying journey and in the decision making process. Before we will be talking about how to create a mutual action plan, we must be able to know first the need to work on with a customer to know their current situation and their desired future. This would help them identify their expectations in generating a solution.
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What is a Mutual Action Plan?
MAP stands for Mutual Action Plan. This type of plan serves as a document that helps the sales team and their customer in working together to find mutual solution. MAP has different names. It can also be called as a mutual success plan, mutually agreed action plan, joint execution plan, go-live plan, and close plan. Take note that MAP should be able to answer the following questions: who needs to do something? and when should they do it to make the plan happen?
This is not just something that can easily be worked on by both the sales team and the customers. The reason behind the fact that a business plan would work so well is through a collaborative effort. A well-written MAP has details and input coming from both the seller and buyer. It should be able to identify the steps in implementing a particular product or service within an organization.
Creating a mutual action plan would help in keeping the sales team and customers on track. It is quite a very essential tool in business as it serves both the seller and the buyer. It even helps you in identifying a specific deal that might end up to nothing.
Importance of Using Mutual Action Plan
Mutual action plans helps every sellers to have a close deal faster and provides a management essential in sales forecasting. For the buyers, it can provide quality buying experience that would create a difference from every business competition.
There are four (4) benefits of using MAP:
1. Higher close rate – MAP helps you identify buyer’s process in advance as well as the stockholders’. This is for the purpose of showing you when a specific deal is not even viable so that you will be spending more time in finding for deals that will contribute to success.
2. Faster sales cycle and fewer deals slipping into the next quarter – MAPS helps you in speeding up your sales cycle. You can clearly show how a possible slippage could cause a risk, executive attention and more. This is applicable whenever you try to anchor deal and put two dates on the mutual action plan.
3. Deliver better buying experience – it is always about minimizing risks that would help you have good decision making skills. Transparency leads to buyers give trust over their counterparts. This minimizes the risk of wasting so much time and effort and being held responsible for having a bad business deal.
4. Better forecasts and deal coaching – an organization depends on knowing what to work so it is much better that you have to know about it sooner. One factor that ensures an accurate forecast is that if you know the status leading to a compelling event. Consider measuring the buyer’s progress also.
What could be the elements of an effective mutual action plan?
The elements include making sure that it is really mutual, thinking of outcomes, adding key dates, working back from launch date, introducing a map early, keeping everything updated, showing impact on the slipped dates and sharing as wide as possible.
What can you gain in a mutual action plan?
You will have reduced risks, less work, self-awareness, understanding of the scope, and being accountable.
What are some of the details that a mutual action plan has to cover?
The details include activity and outcome of the buying phase, list of participating individuals from the vendor and customer, date of completion, current status of the activity and the key members of the customer and vendor’s team.
Customers who are inexperienced in the buying aspect of the business would usually appreciate insights. What helps them in establishing a timeframe is through the idea of delivery value and on working backwards. When you try to incorporate your current situation and desired future as a buyer, it will help you in seeing as to why the project is marked as essential.
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