From Our Team to Yours: Conversation with a CEO

Win / Loss analysis ceoExploring research programs from different perspectives introduces different ideas and takeaways. Each perspective has its own strategies, talents, and processes whether it be researching win / loss, departed client, or client satisfaction. Consider what happens at the CEO or executive level. How do these things change? The conversation below reveals just that – find out what these programs look like at 10,000 feet about the data – through an interview with Anova’s CEO and Founder, Rich Schroder.

Anova: What draws you to market research?

Rich: A long time ago I learned that gathering feedback and applying it to what I was doing produced a better result. I am incredibly results-driven and I came to transition a defensiveness to the feedback into an acceptance. Feedback, especially delivered in an unbiased, honest way, gives you the edge. It can really impact how you are doing what you are doing and the way you feel about your work.

Anova: How does that apply to win / loss or departed client?

Rich: That edge can be found in any program Anova works on for our clients. It is what links them all – whether a client is learning how to close more business through a win / loss program or find out how to retain more clients by learning from those that have already left for a competitor or even how to really listen to their clients through a comprehensive client satisfaction program. The feedback is rich, honest, specific, and actionable. If an organization wants to understand themselves better and really commit to seeing improvements, any of these programs work.

Anova: Can you give an example of how an executive can experience the material value of this kind of feedback? In other words, can it be tied back to hard dollars?

Rich: Yes, we have learned some key findings from our clients that I think answer your question. First, an executive is most likely tracking and revisiting the cost of new sales. In other words, what does it cost for an organization to move a prospect through the presales, sales and onboarding process to a new client? This is an important number. One of Anova’s clients shared with us that it took them three years to break even on the cost of a single piece of new business. We also know from years of research that 36% of new clients experience issues that threaten their overall satisfaction – a situation where that new client could depart before that break even happens. Win / loss research announces these early issues to organizations allowing them to respond in a timely manner and secure their satisfaction. The cost of any one of Anova’s programs would pay itself back if one client was saved from departing.

Anova: Does Anova run these programs on its own business?

Rich: Absolutely. We follow the same principles we share with prospects and clients. We totally understand what it takes to get a program administered and supported as well as how to communicate and learn from the feedback. We are constantly learning from our new sales situations and from our client relationships – current and departed. It is invaluable information and hopefully shows we are committed to learning and improving.

Anova: If an organization had budget for one research program, which one would be the most impactful?

Rich: That’s a great problem to have. Securing budget is a big step for any organization moving forward with market research. My answer is that it really depends on what the organization wants to learn more about. If there have been more departing clients than typical, running a departed client program would help an organization learn what happened and when during those decisions – the research would help that firm be in the know for its existing clients and help them retain them better. If the organization has new service folks or new products in the field with existing clients, a client satisfaction program would help an organization assess their success or challenges and identify their top areas of loyalty. And finally, if an organization wanted to understand its competition better or improve its win rate, I would recommend a win / loss program 100%. As a CEO, I use all three and cannot imagine making decisions for my company, employees, and clients without them.

Anova: What makes Anova stand out from its owns competitors?

Rich: That’s easy. Our people and our experience. Those are the two keys to our success together. We work for amazing clients and we are continually committing to delivering the best experience and research to our relationships. Anova would not be the same firm without our team and the mountain of experience they bring to work every day.