Guidelines for Companies
- The focus of the evening is to give you as entrepreneurs running a small to medium size businesses an increased understanding of what it takes to secure sales with an Enterprise or Government customer.
- The Executives you will be speaking with are volunteers who are giving up their personal time to tap into their experience to help you accelerate your learning. Respect this in the way you conduct yourself when talking to them.
- Mentors will have supplied the backgrouinds via a linkedin profile under the Mentors menu tab. Take a moment to look at where they are working now AND also where they've worked in the past. Many of them have deep experience in multiple industries and / or organisations that might surpirse you.
- Please select which mentors you wish to speak with carefully. If your company is highly unlikely to target a mentors’ industry please don’t schedule a meeting with that mentor just for the sake of it: You may be preventing someone else from having a much more focused conversation that would benefit their company which is targeting that industry.
- You should have a working offering that has beta users / early sales and plans that mean you are either ready to sell or will be ready to sell to enterprise customers within 12-18 months. If you are a solo operator or do not have a working offering please reconsider attending this event since you are likely not in a position to put the counsel you will receive into practice.
- You should not disclose commercially sensitive information nor expect that the conversations are covered under a non-disclosure agreement.
Focus your conversation with the mentor on discovering what it is you need to do be to sales ready. Some examples that may come up include:
- Timing: many big corporates plan budgets during a 2-4 month period each year and once locked down, find it very difficult to consider new engagements that are “out of cycle”
- Budgets: Fit within the procurement process in terms of who, which department / budget, responsibility levels, decision criteria.
- Regulations: Compliance around certain data, operational, and legal standards is essential for some engagements.
- Partnering: Many Enterprise and Government customers use large outsourcers to manage the integration and operation of their process and IT. It may be better to go via one these large outsources than to go direct.
- Platforms: Big Business typically standardises around certain platforms for efficiency and cost. If you don’t or can’t tailor your product to integrate with them then they can’t buy from you.
- Relationships: Just because someone in a big company show interest in your offering doesn’t mean they have the power to say “Yes” to buying it. You need to know who the right people to talk to are to be successful.
- Be sure to make this a two way conversation, share what you need to deliver (within the bounds of what is sensible) if you were to become a partner or supplier to a larger company. Often larger organisations are not used to working directly with smaller businesses help them to help you succeed.
- Finally have fun!
Companies will need to provide a one-page summary using the supplied template on their company (bullet point answers are fine, compelting form should take no longer than 15-20 minutes) for vetting to ensure readiness to execute at the time of application to participate and subsequently for sharing with the mentors prior to the evening should they be invited to attend. Completed templates should be emailed to email@example.com