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SalesTech Interview With Scott Anschuetz, CEO, Visualize

What were some of the early influences that made you want to work in Sales?

When I was about 12 or 13, my father took me to a Mike Wickett seminar.

Back in the day, Mike Wickett was what would be considered a motivational speaker and I literally sat and watched this guy talk. He explained the way you think and the way you speak to yourself has a tremendous impact. I remember realizing, “I’m watching all these grownups in here listening to this guy, they’re 30, 40 years old, and they’re just now starting to hear how this works.”

So, I said to my dad, “Dad, you got to buy the tapes.” He was surprised at my insistence, but he bought the cassette tapes. We went on a road trip a few months later and we listened to every one of them.

Another big influence was my stepfather – he was a manufacturer’s rep to Chrysler and he always told me he had the greatest job in the world because no one told him what he was worth or what he had to do every day. He said, “If I want to make more money, I just work harder.” That really stuck with me as well. 

What did you learn in your early years as a sales representative?

I was selling for Dun & Bradstreet back in the ‘90s, and I was successful because we only had three specific value propositions. I worked hard and thought I knew how to sell as I always overachieved at 200% of my quota.

Then, I moved to Clarify. At the time, Clarify was a new company in the emerging enterprise software market – so a new market, no brand name, and I was selling to many different personas with different value propositions. Initially, I crashed and burned – I started to recognize there’s so much that I didn’t know. Then, Clarify introduced the ValueSelling construct to its salesforce and things turned around for me.

How did things change for you with the ValueSelling Framework?

I started to recognize pretty quickly that I was telling people what I thought their value proposition was, not uncovering what was meaningful for them. With the ValueSelling Framework, you learn to ask questions and have them discover for themselves why you’re valuable and can help them enable what they need.

I became the top-selling rep for Clarify three years in a row. I visualized my success and just kept applying the framework and focusing on it. I was extremely impressed with the ValueSelling organization and wanted to work with the company, but I needed more management experience first. Once I gained that, I approached ValueSelling and started my business, Visualize, in 2002.

Today, we’re the leading provider of the ValueSelling Framework.

So, why did you decide to name your company Visualize?

Visualization is fundamental to how I approach life and success and failure.

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Growing up, I was able to see motivational speakers like Mike Wickett and Anthony Robbins when I was very young, and I was fortunate enough to discover that success comes from how you manage your own mind and thoughts. At the end of the day, it’s about visualizing repetitively where you want to be because what you focus on is what you get. I use visualization to set the bar in terms of what I want to achieve in sales. 

What makes the ValueSelling Framework so successful with your clients?

We connect to the various disciplines in an organization and get them to relate to the ValueSelling Framework. It helps our clients achieve higher levels of success because we do more than just sales training. It’s also about value articulation, about helping organizations articulate and engineer value. So, we engineer, message, articulate, sell, close, and renew – and continually assess against this framework.

Can you give a couple of examples of how you help your clients achieve higher levels of success?

Sure, here are a few who track specific metrics:

  • In the early days of Salesforce.com, we helped train their entire sales organization. They did a study, and we increased their win rate by 11 percent.
  • With VMware, they did an internal study, and they found that when people had been trained in ValueSelling, they saw a 65 percent increase in their Average Sales Price.
  • With Citrix Online, we helped them increase their sales rep productivity by 44 percent in two quarters.
  • At Right Hemisphere, their goal was a liquidity event. We came in, retooled sales, marketing, and leadership, and their Average Sale Price more than doubled in two quarters. They were acquired by SAP shortly after.
  • ServiceNow just did an internal study, and when the teams use ValueSelling with multiple Value Prompters, their new Average Contract Value is 2.75 times higher than without it. Powerful to imagine achieving 3x more on every net new deal.
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It’s different to sell and to teach other people how to sell, and articulate value. What enables you to teach that and be so successful at it?

It’s easy for me to teach this construct because I believe in it and have seen it work for myself and for so many others, and I share those real-world examples. It’s truly (embedded) in my bones. When I teach ValueSelling, there’s 100 percent transparency and enthusiasm, and that passion gets transferred to the people I’m training. I’ve had people come back to me and tell me how much this has completely changed their lives, and that’s amazingly gratifying.

How do you recharge your senses?

I love spending time with my family. My wife, two teenaged children and I like to hike, travel, play golf, ride bikes and, believe it or not, we still play board games together.

What’s one thing that might surprise people about you?

I sang soprano in grade school. I even did a few solo performances. Then I hit puberty.

What’s your “magic bullet”?

There is nothing else individuals could be leveraging that would be simpler and more powerful than the ValueSelling Framework. ValueSelling is realistic and accessible, and functionally something our clients can adopt. My team also delivers ongoing reinforcement to make sure that it works for our clients. We’re always accessible, and we’re always trying to make ValueSelling become part of the DNA for the companies we train.

Thank you, Scott, for taking us close to your Sales and Customer Success strategy!

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Visualize provides businesses with a proven and repeatable structure for increasing revenue. Visualize is an associate of ValueSelling Associates,and the leading provider of the ValueSelling Framework® for the last 15 years.

Scott Anschuetz is the CEO and Founder of Visualize, the leading provider of the ValueSelling Framework for the last 15 years.

With more than 30 years of expertise in sales, marketing, sales leadership, and building profitable companies, Scott and his partners at Visualize have trained thousands of teams around the globe at corporations including Avaya, Interwoven, MarketLive, Mercury Interactive, Motorola, salesforce.com, ServiceNow, SuccessFactors, TELUS, VMware, and others.