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Adopting a New CRM - breaking bad habits and forming new ones

Change is always difficult. Disrupting deeply ingrained habits takes some perseverance and, in an ideal world, support from others. For many salespeople using email as their main sales tool is the habit of a lifetime.

Habits are like shortcuts. Things we do quickly and without thinking. This is because we've done them so often. Using your inbox to manage your sales process is one such shortcut. But it is one worth breaking because you are losing money.

To create a new habit, we need something to replace it. And the knowledge and understanding of why we are going through the pain of breaking the habit. Another trait of creating a new, positive habits? They offer a reward. I mean you don't get up each morning and traipse into the kitchen and fire up the coffee machine without knowing that a freshly brewed cup is the reward at the other end.

Changing habits means disrupting routines. It can often be easier to break habits in the midst of other big changes. And change becomes easier again if the new habit can be reinforced again and again. This reinforcement can take both a carrot and a stick approach. The carrot is the promise of more sales, more commissions and a better work/life balance due to the time saving of the new CRM. The stick is that your managers and their managers are watching. A new CRM brings transparency. Not only to sales figures, But to what salespeople are doing. Are they completing the activities they have been set? Did they reach out to that unhappy client?

In addition to reinforcement, timing is important in making new habits stick. The first two weeks are critical. A training session prior to using the CRM is a given. But what about after a week and then after the second week? At Motii, we find that it is the second and third training sessions that drive adoption and create habits. By this stage. staff are familiar with the CRM and come to the training sessions genuinely engaged. Some of the initial apprehension is gone and they are asking the right questions.


By the end of the second week, the team should be settling into their new routine. The third week is crucial. Use it to drive home the fact that their new CRM is already paying dividends. Demonstrate some of the positive results. As well as running sales meeting using the new dashboards and reports to make sure they know they are now more accountable than before.

Repetition is the key. Have team members manually create deals. Run short internal sessions where you take the deal of an example client through the pipeline from start to finish. All the way from creating the lead, person and organisation through to winning or losing the deal. Have each team member do this and video themselves doing it.

All of this is layered on the top of a video-based training manual. Different folks learn at different strokes. And some staff don't do well in group training sessions. They prefer the solitude of a well-made training manual and the ability to replay and review ideas, workflows and processes in their own time and to learn at their own pace.

Motii always provides your video-based training manual prior to the first sessions and recommends that team members watch at least 3 key videos. This prepares them for the sessions and prevents them from being overwhelmed during the live training.

Key takeaways:

  • use big changes to break habits
  • creating new habits is easier than you think
  • it takes 3-weeks to create new habits
  • reinforcement is key
  • use a carrot-and-a-stick approach to compliance
  • different team members will have different ways of learning
  • use the video-based training manual to prepare teams for the live training sessions


Ben Fuller

Co-founder at Motii

Serial successful start-up Founder, and former C-level executive, Ben understands that data and systems are what makes everything tick.

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