Ep.10: Continuous Improvement on the Sales Process w/ Mark Graban & Greg Jacobson


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In this episode, Scott hosts Greg Jacobson and Mark Graban from KaiNexus, a software company that serves hospitals and health systems. Greg and Mark speak about how they built a successful startup utilizing the LEAN methodology and understanding the importance of LISTENING to customers. Key areas covered are:

  • How Greg founded KaiNexus as an ER doctor who thought there could be a better way and the lessons he learned when building out a product and taking it to market.
  • How Mark came on board to help build the go-to-market strategies for KaiNexus and bring on board the first customers while establishing KaiNexus in the “lean healthcare” community.
  • How a company can implement the method of Identify, Act, Resolve, and Recognize to their day-to-day process to improve the team and company in all aspects of the company.
  • Recognizing the difference between a know-it-all salesperson versus a learn-it-all, and realizing the valuable information to be learned during the sales process.
  • Identifying and understanding a customer’s needs and how to position your products different features to meet those needs.

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Podcast Notes

02:45 – How KaiNexus was started.

05:35 – The potential of what could be done in Healthcare.

06:45 – What underpins the feeling of Mark and Greg are on a crusade for continuous improvement.

09:40 – How a company can apply the four steps, Identify, Act, Resolve, Recognize to their process.

13:10 – How someone can take 5% or 10% out of a day to make sure they’re improving.

16:50 – How to build habits.

18:45 – The continuous improvement principle, the idea of a small test of change.

20:30 – The know-it-all versus the learn-it-all. What is the learn-it-all and what it means.

22:50 – What could be learnt in the sales process and how you could apply it.

25:45 – Understanding a customer’s need and knowing what part of the product is the right fit.

28:15 – Time is the most precious thing for an entrepreneur, how to choose to use that time.

30:05 – Identifying customers that believe in your “why” statements.

35:25 – The more narrow you set your focus, the greater chance that a small company is able to solve that problem better.

37:30 – Early versions of KaiNexus, did it feel like consulting when Mark and Greg were starting up?

38:40 – Focusing on your customers and their success.

39:40 – The organizational behavior and psychology aspect is critically important to the implementation.

41:20 – Churn rate is important to think about when you’re developing a SaaS enterprise.

42:55 – Recommendation to a small team to go about their own Seven-Day, 30-Day or 100-Day challenge to permanently improve their company.

45:06 – How to implement the 100-Day challenge in your company.

Resources mentioned or related to this podcast

  • The KaiNexus WorkOut, is an adaptation of a proven three month improvement model that originated at GE.
  • KaiNexus, a continuous improvement software platform empowers and engages your employees to make a meaningful impact on your organization in a culture of continuous improvement.