Significance Of Opportunity Win/Loss Debrief

Whether you won an opportunity or lost it, you need to understand its reason. This will help to adopt the strategies that have a high impact on success and to improve the what you are doing now . Win/loss debrief is a secret sauce that contributes to improving the conversion rate for opportunities.


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What is Win/Loss Debrief?

It's an activity, usually conducted post the opportunity/lead result declaration to understand the reasons behind success or failure. In other words, it's a retrospective discussion where stakeholders from different areas like Sales, PreSales, Technical/Delivery will speak about what went wrong and right.


Why Win/Loss Debrief it important?

  1. It helps to understand what went well in an opportunity. This will help us to adopt that strategy again for similar opportunities.

  2. It helps to understand what went wrong with that opportunity. Realizing about it will help us to prevent those mistakes in the future.

  3. It helps to understand how we can improve to increase the chances of winning an opportunity.

Is it like a trial?

Absolutely not. You are not there to find mistakes. But identify improvement points. The focus should be on what went well and how we can improve further.


When do we need to do it?

As soon as the results are out and we had a chance to talk to our prospect/client after that.


Is there any per-requisite for this activity?

Yes, we should try to get feedback from customers on the following before having a debrief session. This will give you the required information and help to foster the relationship.

If we won,

- How do you rate the overall sales engagement experience?

- Are we able to communicate clearly about our understanding and our proposed solution?

- What is one thing that you liked most in the submission documents?

- Were we proactive enough to meet your speed?

- Do you see any areas where we need to improve?

- What made you choose us? Is it cost, our response, or any other reason?

If we lost,

- Where do we need to improve? Is it on the cost, response, or any other?

- Were we able to clearly outline what we are proposing?

- Do you see our proposal lacking in any critical areas?

- What made you select the vendor who won this? Is it their approach, proactiveness, support terms or any other?

- Where do we stand on the cost aspect and timeline?


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How to perform a Win/Loss debrief

  1. Invitation: Invite all stakeholders who have worked on the opportunity. And include one person who is no way related to this opportunity. But belong to Sales/BD/PreSales/AM. This person will contribute some fresh views.

  2. Debrief Discussion

  3. Setting the context: Person from Sales/BD/PreSales who leads the discussion should set the context. He/she should speak about opportunity, how we pursued it, the result and the objective of the discussion. He/she should also thank all team members who have put on the efforts to prepare the response.

  4. Experience Sharing: You should prompt all team members to share their experience with the opportunity.

  5. Convey Client Response: The person who lead the discussion should also mention about the insights he had while communicating the client after the results are out.

  6. What Went Well: Evaluate various aspects like the following

  7. Timelines

  8. Preparation

  9. Customer & Opportunity Understanding

  10. Team Support

  11. Solution Approach/Offering

  12. Industry/Domain Experience

  13. Timely Response etc.

  14. What Went Wrong: Evaluate various aspects like the following

  15. Timelines

  16. Preparation

  17. Customer & Opportunity Understanding

  18. Team Support

  19. Solution Approach/Offering

  20. Industry/Domain Experience

  21. Timely Response

  22. Documentation

  23. Internal Support

  24. Cost

  25. Value Proposition

  26. How To Improve: Evaluate the aspects where improvements can be made and how to make it. Set timelines against it.

  27. Debrief Documentation: We should document all discussions and share the same with all team members attended the discussion. You can use the format below for documentation.


If you would love to discuss more on this, write to [email protected] or reach me at +91 9496 362209