JT Pedersen on Sales and AI opportunities

What is AI’s Role in Sales?

Have been thinking about how AI might be specifically applied in the Sales environment. Today’s HBR article, 𝘏𝘰𝘸 𝘎𝘦𝘯𝘦𝘳𝘢𝘵𝘪𝘷𝘦 𝘈𝘐 𝘞𝘪𝘭𝘭 𝘊𝘩𝘢𝘯𝘨𝘦 𝘚𝘢𝘭𝘦𝘴 is rather timely.

The article takes a look at 𝐖𝐡𝐚𝐭’𝐬 𝐏𝐨𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐛𝐥𝐞 (Reverse admin creep, Enhance salespeople’s customer interaction, Assist sales managers [and rev ops<g>]), before talking about how. The balance of the article discusses high-level processes and steps to begin realizing it’s benefits (such as with MS 𝘝𝘐𝘝𝘈 𝘚𝘢𝘭𝘦𝘴 and Salesforce’s 𝘌𝘪𝘯𝘴𝘵𝘦𝘪𝘯 𝘎𝘗𝘛).


Their take: 𝘞𝘦 𝘦𝘹𝘱𝘦𝘤𝘵 𝘈𝘐-𝘱𝘰𝘸𝘦𝘳𝘦𝘥 𝘵𝘦𝘤𝘩𝘯𝘰𝘭𝘰𝘨𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘵𝘰 𝘳𝘢𝘱𝘪𝘥𝘭𝘺 𝘣𝘦𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘦 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘺 𝘴𝘢𝘭𝘦𝘴𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘴𝘰𝘯’𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘺 𝘴𝘢𝘭𝘦𝘴 𝘮𝘢𝘯𝘢𝘨𝘦𝘳’𝘴 𝘥𝘪𝘨𝘪𝘵𝘢𝘭 𝘢𝘴𝘴𝘪𝘴𝘵𝘢𝘯𝘵. Generative AI is already helping copywriters draft content and computer programmers write code, boosting their productivity by 50% or more. It can do the same for salespeople.

𝐎𝐟 𝐩𝐚𝐫𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐮𝐥𝐚𝐫 𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐭 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐦𝐚𝐧𝐲 𝐨𝐟 𝐮𝐬 𝐢𝐧 𝐑𝐞𝐯𝐎𝐩𝐬, is this observation: 

The odds of success are greater when efforts to bring AI to sales are led by a “boundary spanner” — an individual who understands and is respected by technical experts as well as by sales force members. That’s the kind of role many of us in RevOps thrive in.

This is the sort of positive reflection needed regarding this game changing technology. In recent weeks, months, many discussions about AI’s potential to replace mankind have had alarmist perspectives. For some roles, the concern is warranted. However, as with many earlier technology advancements, it has the potential to empower us to do even more.

Specific to Sales, I am increasingly enthusiastic about analyzing and testing what AI, such as Viva Sales and Einstein GPT, can do for us. Way too much Sales productivity is fundamentally wasted:

  • Basic administration and manually overseeing (often, supposedly) automated processes.
  • Updating CRM, such as entering contact information, opportunity activities, pushing/pulling Close Dates, creating/revising summaries for managerial review
  • Struggling to find the best, most relevant marketing collateral for the current opportunity.
  • After architecting a good solution, finding the precise product variant (from a sea of dozens of look-alikes in a price book), resulting in meticulously built quotes customers can easily comprehend and sell internally.
  • Identifying white space areas to expand or find opportunities.

These tools offering the potential to supercharge a sales person’s abilities. I envision a trained system doing much of this in the background for the sales person: automatically identifying potential white space for instance.

More excited than concerned about this right now :)!

#techindustry #leadership #operations #AI

Image Credits:
MS Viva & SF Einstein GPT – Their respective owners
Feature image – Daria Nepriakhina