You did it. You finally found a person in the company who is genuinely excited to talk to you about your solution. But guess what? That’s not enough anymore.
It’s not even enough that they’re a real charmer who makes time to talk with you about the ins and outs of their company’s internal politics. You need to partner with someone who inherently believes that change is necessary. You need someone who can help fellow stakeholders understand why change is needed and get them to agree on the problem to solve and the type of solution to buy. These are people who have the credibility and authority to facilitate the change, build excitement for it, and drive alignment around it with the 5-6 other stakeholders who will inevitably be involved in purchasing a new solution.
CEB’s The Challenger Customer refers to these types of buyers as Mobilizers. They are active buyers committed to bringing about the changes needed to help their companies grow. You can’t find a Mobilizer in an org chart. They’re not necessarily a VP or Senior Director. Role and title don’t matter. Mobilizers are those who bring about change in spite of the org chart, not because of it.
Mobilizers tend to fit one of three personas, each with unique strengths and weaknesses:
- Go-Getters are relentless. They take ambiguous ideas and turn them into work plans.
- Teachers are the polar opposite of Go-Getters. They like the emotional part of an idea. They’re passionate, persuasive, and dynamic but poor project managers.
- Skeptics are a hybrid between Go-Getters and Teachers. They like precision and having complete certainty in a plan before moving forward.
Connecting with these personas demands a tailored style of communication. Taking the right approach can make all the difference in getting a Mobilizer to buy into and advocate for your proposed change for their company.
But, for a complete understanding of how to partner with internal challengers or Mobilizers, we recommend reading the full The Challenger Customer book.