Starbucks

Industry:
Manufacturing

Starbucks is a coffee company and coffeehouse chain based in Seattle.

Highlights

  • Partnered with Corporate Visions to enable better, more focused executive conversations, and to strengthen other key skills areas throughout the sales cycle, including pipeline growth and negotiations.
  • Increased adoption of key selling skills after implementing Corporate Visions training.

Challenge

Having a great consumer brand doesn’t always translate to success at the enterprise level for B2B relationships. Starbucks, one of the most recognizable brands in the world, faces an array of challenges and opportunities as it looks to engage decision-makers and have a presence in the places where coffee drinkers “work, live and play,” according to Joel Kline, director of branded solutions at Starbucks.

Besides navigating the challenges of keeping cross-functional teams aligned—from marketing to design, to operations and legal—Kline said another challenge Starbucks’ branded solutions division is facing is heavy competition from new entrants to the coffee space, both large and small. Other large consumer brands are making a stronger push to gain marketshare, while smaller, independent coffee companies also continue to enter the market, touting a perceived different experience and more local flavor.

Solution

Starbucks leveraged Corporate Visions skills training to improve their reps’ ability to have better, more engaging executive conversations with C-suite decision-makers.

“Partnering with [Corporate Visions] has allowed us at Starbucks to elevate our conversations, and probably the key takeaway is…as a sales leader, we tell our teams to do their research, but I don’t think we’ve ever put a lot of structure around what that research should look like, and then once you’ve done it, how to utilize it,” Kline said. “And through working with [Corporate Visions], it’s clarified what that research should look like, and then how it should be utilized in a conversation with the leaders we’re meeting with in our customer organizations.”

The response to Starbucks training programs with Corporate Visions has been positive, according to Kline, who said the initiatives have led to increased adoption of key selling skills.

“When you take the innovation and work we’re doing through our training and partnership with [Corporate Visions], it really sets us up for success and growth and continuing to expand the brand and meet our targets,” Kline said.

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