Sanchita Sur says business-to-business sales representatives may be taking the wrong approach to increasing sales.
Sur, the founder and chief executive officer of Emplay, a Dublin, California-based sales tech startup, says too many reps are struggling to talk to too many prospects.
“Fewer, higher-quality deals will get you there,” Sur said Thursday, in an interview at the new SAP Leonardo Center in New York.
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SAP S.E., a company based in Walldorf, in the German state of Baden-Württemberg, is one of the biggest software companies in the world. The company’s Leonardo program gives customers a chance to use new types of tech tools — such as machine learning systems, tools for handling giant streams of data, virtual reality systems and Internet of Things tools — through the cloud, or giant networks of distant computers that SAP manages.
SAP wants to get big corporate clients interested in playing with the Leonardo tools, and it wants to encourage startup companies to help the corporate clients find something useful to do with the tools.
SAP is trying to match the corporate clients with the tech startups by setting up a network of SAP Leonardo Center offices, or Leonardo tool showrooms and idea hatcheries. The first four are in New York, Paris, Bangalore and Sao Leopoldo, a city in Rio Grande do Sul, a state in Brazil.
Google Fantasy Camp
The New York center is like a Google employee fantasy camp. It’s on the 48th floor of a new office building overlooking the Hudson River, with elevators controlled by the QR codes on riders’ ID cards or visitor passes.
SAP has put its new Leonardo Center in New York on the 48th floor of a building overlooking the Hudson River, and all of Lower Manhattan. (Photo: Allison Bell/TA)
The center itself features its own espresso bar, a foosball table, panoramic views of New York, an open floor plan that’s good for training sessions (or parties), and booths where people who need to think can get work done.
The center, which SAP describes as an innovation center, also features employees with skills in areas such as the Internet of Things and machine learning. Managers hope to have people from startups, academia and financial services companies working together in the center at all times.
“You combine all the ingredients you need to innovate,” Birgit Fien-Schmalzbauer, head of research and innovation for the insurance industry unit at SAP, said in an interview. “They’re all here.”
Sur, for example, has been using proprietary data, analytical strategies, rule sets and pattern-detection tools, including SAP Leonardo tools, to develop systems that can predict which sales moves might work best in specific situations.