Gartner Blog Network


A CRM Litmus Test Question: Who Owns the Client Relationship?

by Tad Travis  |  July 6, 2015  |  Submit a Comment

The question: when discussing your company’s clients and prospects, what pronouns do you use?

I recall an interaction some time ago in which a sales account executive attempted to rally support for an urgent up-sell deal.

The representative used the phrase “my client” several times in an email to the extended account team and relevant SME’s. After several exchanges about how to best serve the client relative to the demands of the sales cycle, one of the SME’s asked the representative:

At what point do ‘your clients’ become ‘our clients’?

This question was somewhat rhetorical, but it’s an excellent one.  I recommend that you use it as a litmus test for assessing your teams’ abilities to build meaningful customer experiences with your clients.

If you find more “my” pronouns in your internal conversations than you find the pronoun”our”, then your teams haven’t figured out how interact as a cohesive team.  And your clients have likely discovered the same.

Additional Resources

View Free, Relevant Gartner Research

Gartner's research helps you cut through the complexity and deliver the knowledge you need to make the right decisions quickly, and with confidence.

Read Free Gartner Research

Category: crm  

Tags: crm  future-of-sales  sfa  

Tad Travis
Research Director
1 year at Gartner
15 years IT Industry

Tad Travis is a Director in Gartner Research. He is responsible for managing the Sales Performance Management (SPM) sector of Gartner's CRM research practice. His research focuses primarily on SPM tools and capabilities to drive sales effectiveness and efficiency in all industries. Read Full Bio




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes, with attribution to Gartner. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an "as-is" basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.