Winning the 5X Deals with Lisa Magnuson [Episode 752]

Lisa Magnuson, author of The TOP Sales Leader Playbook: How to Win 5X Deals Repeatedly, joins me in this episode.




  • Lisa focuses on big sales deals; she wrote a book on big deals by interviewing 41 Sales VPs about what they need in a sales playbook to repeatedly win 5X deals.
  • You do things differently when you’re targeting a 5X sales deal. Your old sales playbook is inadequate; you must do more. Big deals are messy. The first step is to identify the opportunity. The imperative is to identify big deals.
  • Lisa shares a case story from a consulting client. Lisa was called in to evaluate an opportunity and stayed with the client for 18 months working on a deal that earned them $20 million to begin with and a growing relationship.
  • Lisa’s book includes 16 plays; each play has a sideline coach, such as Brian Burns. Brian says your company has to change to land and support these big customers. When you get it right, you open the door for more big deals.
  • Big deals become steps for growth. Andy shares experiences from his years of selling big deals. As they executed their processes more effectively and productively, all their business opportunities grew.
  • Lisa explains the risk analysis you do when you evaluate a big opportunity. Look for red flags and yellow flags and see how to handle them and be flexible, even if it means partnering with a larger firm to deliver.
  • Consider compensation when you bring together a team. All the dollars shouldn’t go to the salesperson. Level out the rewards, based on contribution. Let your customers see the depth of expertise on your account team.
  • Andy recalls a sale where the customer placed one of their staff in-house at Andy’s company to oversee product development. That deal reduced risk and closed the sale! Lisa tells how a client answered an RFP with ‘win themes.’
  • If you plan to pursue 5X deals, first nurture a culture of accountability in your organization. Andy recommends the process Lisa lays out in her book. It’s not about finding superstar salespeople; it’s about the structure.
  • The account team gets it done by systematically planning for success. This includes relationship-mapping, strategy, and planning. Lisa helped a client get a $40 million deal last year by showing them the path to success.
  • Andy stresses that the CEO needs to be involved. He shares a story about a sales environment where the CEO ran every weekly sales meeting and all the executives participated. The CEO corrected all problems on the spot!
  • Lisa explains the executive communication brief in one of the culture plays in the book. Connect your company’s executives with your prospect’s executives. Capitalize on those executive interactions in the communication brief.