Internal beliefs are interesting, and sometimes misleading. Companies can develop a shared understanding of the truth and work with that set of beliefs, even in spite of evidence to the contrary.
But here’s one that surprises me: a client examined sales results across market segments and found a deep paradox, or two:
- they were losing heavily in the segment believed by the sales team to be their “sweet spot”
- they were winning disproportionately in smaller accounts where common wisdom says they should be less of a fit
The first point is pretty common for us, and we use Win/Loss Analysis to get the insights there.
But the second part of this paradox is interesting, at least for me as someone who studies business results: You might phrase this as, “why are we winning so much?”
I find that question amusing, but the real question is, “what is wrong about our mental model, or our internal belief system?” As we study wins in this segment, are they just weird edge cases, or can we learn from those wins to find more like them? If sales focused more on this segment, could we scale it more than we think we can?
When you’re looking at business results for your product line or your business, look for anomalies and paradoxes like this. Where does the data match, or diverge, from what your internal beliefs would predict? Those paradoxes represent fertile ground to dig deep with research like Win/Loss. Let me know if we can help.