How To Train For The Stakeholder Gauntlet

Industry Trends, Tools and Resources
Mitch Turck

Question: How will your business scale if the same handful of domain experts have to attend every late-stage deal?

It could be argued that the holy grail of product-market fit is having an employee who can pitch any prospective customer, and be entirely unfazed by the myriad job titles in attendance. COO, VP of Product, Head of PR, Sales Engineer, Data Science Lead… the more the merrier, and the more likely to move a deal forward. But at best, a typical company might have one all-star on the client side who can navigate this gauntlet of stakeholders in real-time.

I want to show you how distributes this authoritative confidence across your entire org, so that growth is no longer capped by the bandwidth of your internal experts.

Stop Sending Out The SME Bat Signal

Every company starts with the founder(s) participating in every deal. As the team grows, knowledge is disseminated, and what used to require an in-person elevator pitch starts to become marketing videos, product features, battlecards… the materials more team members can push to a larger market. But then, your sales team hits that dreaded stumbling block:

Pitches and demos just rehash what the customer’s already heard. Customer wants additional depth. Customer needs risk mitigation. Customer brings one of their domain experts to the table. Customer asks tough questions. As a result, the salesperson has to decelerate the deal and send up the bat signal to one of your own subject matter experts (who are surely spread thin as it is).

What’s really going on here is that the salesperson has only been equipped to walk a prospective customer down the happy path — we all know that’s not realistic, and from experience we already have a notion of what questions (or at least, themes) the customer’s going to ask. So why do we knowingly choose to make a poor impression and lose velocity?

It boils down to a culture issue, and that’s precisely where has targeted its solution.

You can’t scale an individual founder or subject matter expert, but you can absolutely scale their domain knowledge, their perspective on the market, and their sense of what to prioritize vs. what to let slide.’s matrix UI is built for this.

With a scalable platform — and built-in AI guidance to help inexperienced teammates contribute — SMEs can deliver more than just ad hoc answers. They can manage their bandwidth by prioritizing the most frequent questions being asked in the field, and distribute their knowledge (in whatever media format they like) framed by how much risk the question creates, how confident the answer is, and how differentiated they feel the answer to be.

Knowledge delivered through this underlying infrastructure can quickly illuminate the most confident and differentiated information client-facing teammates need to learn. And, as they put that education into practice, their own confidence increases, which in turn quantifies itself as deal acceleration (anecdotally, we’ve seen teams close deals up to 40% faster).

One of the major upsides to this approach is that you start identifying the unique superpowers of your client-side team members. Instead of simplistic round-robin lead assignment followed by panic-flagging for help on the deals, each representative gravitates towards the domain expertise where their confidence is growing fastest.

Instead of one “integrations” SME addressing every sales rep’s integration questions one by one, you may see five reps who have learned enough about how to address integrations in the context of customer conversations to bolster the knowledge on SkillBuilder, and thus boost the competence and confidence among the less-informed reps. It’s each one teach one, gone viral.

Is that a convincing reason to try SkillBuilder? If so, you can launch into a free demo here. If not, tell me why, and I’ll owe you a favor.

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