Central to any high-performing sales organization is a great culture, and the Sales team here at Checkr is no exception. Much of our sales culture is derived through the company’s core values with a particular emphasis on transparency.
In the world of sales you live and die by how transparent your organization is. A sales leader can’t provide proactive, meaningful, and effective coaching without transparency into his team daily activities such calls, emails, meetings, etc.
And I, as a Sales Operations professional, can’t even begin to generate an accurate revenue forecast without full visibility into all active opportunities in the pipeline. Pro tip: the trick of putting your finger up in the air and going with your gut doesn’t work in today’s modern sales environment.
So, how do we drive transparency within our Sales organization at Checkr? Why, meetings of course. There simply is no substitute for getting everyone in the same room, face-to-face, where we can richly communicate and receive information. I firmly believe this creates an environment of camaraderie and mutually accountable transparency.
As a sales team, we meet twice weekly to primarily review specific metrics on an individual basis, over-performance and/or shortfalls, and create an open forum to solicit honest, candid feedback. Every team member is given a few minutes of mic time to share personal learnings and, perhaps what everyone most enjoys, a personal win story (or two).
Now while it’s fun to share tough, hard-fought wins with those that are in trenches with us daily, it’s even more so to celebrate with the broader organization; after-all, who doesn’t enjoy a bit of the spotlight every now and then? Further this provides a great opportunity to recognize the other teams at Checkr from Applicant Support to Engineering without who these wins would never be possible.
Enter the Sales Gong.
The original version of the Sales Gong was literally that: A physical gong placed in the middle of Sales team, rung with each new deal. The addition of the sales gong did exactly as expected, resulting in cheers and clapping throughout the office with each new gong ring.
What was not expected however, was the deluge of Slacks and emails about what happened. “Who did we just close?”, “Who closed the deal?”, “What was the value of the deal?” and “What products were sold?” were common.
A bit of a novelty the first time, but as the gong rings consecutively for each new deal, big and small, you’re looking for a solution to keep sales transparent without interrupting the office with the gong when many sales close at once, and to prevent the stream of questions that follow.
Enter Sales Gong 2.0.
The most-current version of the sales gong represents a marriage of two productivity products used here at Checkr: Salesforce and Slack. The former is our source of truth for deal-level data and the latter is the company-wide internal communication and collaboration tool.
I created a customized Webhooks integration to link both, with a bot reporting information as it happens in a dedicated channel that can be followed by anyone within the company. Each report details the company involved as well as the conditions and size of the sale, properly giving credit to the member of the team who closed that deal.
The union of the two create a perfect notification system with real-time, organization-wide information sharing as the Sales team executes on new transactions. We can keep up with deals both big and small, properly highlighting the members of our team who close contracts regularly but don’t get the large display that the bigger sales do.
Best of all…no more questions!
Gong Photo by Alan Levine