Posts

Sales Meets Big Data

monitor-376211_640

New software tools are taking sales into the 21st century by bringing big data into the picture. By analyzing things like the opening of emails and success rates of phone calls, these big data startups can identify the best time of day to reach a CEO or when it’s best to reply to an email. Here are a few of the tools that are available through these startups:

  • Salesforce IQ: Salesforce’s latest software is an aid to sales people, as “it proffers tips on how to interact with specific customers and nudges salespeople when, for example, they haven’t spoken lately to a client they tend to contact regularly.”
  • ClearSlide: This software “alerts salespeople when a potential client reads a pitch email, so they can follow up just when the prospect may be most receptive. It also tells them whether a prospect lingered on the message once they’ve opened it…”
  • The Full Picture: Many departments are already employing plenty of software, sometimes “more than a dozen digital aids. One analyzes records of millions of transactions stored in sales databases to serve up lists of potential customers, ranking them in order of their likelihood to buy. If a prospect doesn’t pick up, another program, at the click of a mouse, leaves a voice-mail message from a prerecorded template. When a salesperson closes a deal, a third program triggers a morale-boosting gong sound.

Salespeople need to step up their game as business are increasingly looking to take out the middle man in transactions. Many positions will be vanishing within the next five years, and as such salespeople need to increase their efficiency by using software aids to keep a leg up on the competition. Ensure your sales team is doing its best by looking into the options above and seeing what works best for your company.

Read the full article in the Wall Street Journal here.

What Cloud Computing Means to Your Job

22bits-cloud-tmagArticle

With advancements in technology, there have been many accusations that technology has made many jobs that were once vital to running a society disappear. From the production line to the accounting office, more and more jobs are being replaced by computers and software and it’s only going to continue to grow. In this era of cloud computing that the tech industry is moving into, companies will require smaller departments and less workers. Many companies will eventually have to adapt to cloud computing and that can be an issue. Here are some of the main points from the biggest cloud companies around:

  • Ed Lazowska who holds a chair in computer science and engineering at the University of Washington said “Technology shapes styles of work. One critical advantage of the cloud is that sharing becomes dramatically easier.”
  •  David Campbell, who is the head of engineering at Microsoft Azure mentioned how they are able to make engineering changes by moving parts of its customers traffic into new software in real time which “takes hours, instead of months and years in the legacy”.
  • At Amazon Web Services they have built the worlds biggest cloud computing business. Work is divided into teams of small size in order to determine what the customer is doing with an important product. This allows the team to quickly adapt the product to work better and look for new insight. For 2014, Amazon announced that it’s cloud division created 60% more new products that it did in 2013.

One can conclude that companies who adapt to cloud computing will be more collaborative, more specialized, and ultimately be better at delivering their services and products. What do you think?

Read the entire article here

Picking Up and Running With Your Dreams

23-CORNER-master495

Alastair Mitchell is the chief executive of Huddle, a cloud-based collaboration software company co-headquartered in London and San Francisco. In a recent interview with Adam Bryant of the New York Times, Mitchell spoke about his early management lessons, how to handle tough situations, and advice for college students. Here are some of the key points from the interview:

  • Learn how to empower people and give positive feedback: “knowing when to let them take risks and when not to criticize them too hard if things go wrong. You have to back them up and then say, That didn’t work, so how are we going to improve it next time?”
  • When faced with difficult decisions, what would we regret not doing in life?: “What would happen if I were to walk out across from your building and cross the street, and a big red bus is coming the other way and I don’t see it. In that brief moment before it hits me, what would be the thing that I would regret not doing? Whenever I’m faced with difficult decisions, I always apply the big red bus test. Instinctively, people know the right answer, but it can be buried under so many layers of doubt and questions. Starting my own business came from one of those moments. ”
  • Motivate yourself and think outside of the box: “I look for people who think big, who are motivated and who have the entrepreneurial instinct. In my questioning, I’m looking for almost the rough edges — the things on their résumé that look different or reveal an inner drive.”
  • Trust who you are and listen to your gut: “Go big or go home. And just trust yourself. Whatever your gut instinct is, you’ll probably be right seven or eight times out of 10. So just go with your gut. What you’ll regret more is the fact that you haven’t gone with your gut. ”

Click here to view the full article from the New York Times.