Background to the partnership
The implementation of Microsoft’s new “Mobile First, Cloud First” strategy required its global sales teams to sell in an entirely different way to an entirely different corporate customer. The team found itself negotiating, on the basis of complex business arguments, with senior executives – as opposed to talking technology with IT managers. It was a whole new sales challenge.
As a result Microsoft collaborated with INSEAD and Intrepid Learning (a learning technology specialist) to custom‑design some robust online Executive Education on a global scale, with an intensive and highly specific business curriculum. Based on the techniques and technologies of Massive Open Online Courses, but tailored to Microsoft’s exact needs, this programme has achieved phenomenal results.
Exceeding expectations at every stage
5,000+ sales executives
85% pass rate exceeded expectations at Microsoft and INSEAD
95% said the course will improve how they perform their job
99% overall satisfaction rate
80% completion rate amongst participants
Read the case study
The Microsoft-INSEAD Customised Online Programme Case Study won the following awards in 2016:
- GOLD in the category of Professional Development, EFMD Excellence in Practice Awards
- GOLD in the category of Best Programme for Sales Training and Performance, Brandon Hall Excellence Awards Programme
The INSEAD-Microsoft online programme has won the Gold Award in the EFMD 2016 Excellence in Practice awards for the category ‘Professional Development’. This highly regarded award recognises outstanding and impactful Learning & Development partnerships in the domains of Leadership, Professional, Talent and Organisation Development.
INSEAD's partnership with Microsoft won Gold at the 2015 and 2016 Brandon Hall Excellence Awards. The awards are in the field of Best Programme for Sales Training and Performance and Best Use of Learning and Talent Technology.
At the end of the course, I have not only researched my new client to a new level of breadth and depth that I will now transfer to my other accounts but I have great ideas for how to land our value proposition in their terms: value chain, value creation, ROI, NPV, etc. I am a hands‑on learner, so I am excited to put this material to work in a real‑life scenario and fully gain the benefit as it sets in over time.
Account Manager, California
The INSEAD approach of value chain analysis helped to identify the competitive advantage that the workforce management support solution would bring to the client [leading telecoms firm] and led to a deal closed at a value of €250K. INSEAD also helped us prove that €250K was a good price through the Return on Investment approach.
Sales Manager, Greece
One of our sellers in Russia let us know he attributes a recent very large deal directly to his team’s participation in the course. The application of the financial acumen articulated in the course was what made the difference in closing the sale. This fantastic win of $24.2 million is attributed directly to INSEAD’s financial acumen teachings: demonstrating ROI via NPV (net present value) and DCF (discounted cash flow) calculations – and the opportunity to move from CAPEX to OPEX.
Account Director, Microsoft Russia
With the knowledge gained from the INSEAD business model innovation training, I was able to challenge a customer on their existing business processes and have a valuable discussion with them about how they can transform their business models into more agile and efficient processes with our cloud technology. We have successfully closed 2 cloud deals with traditional customers, which resulted in approximately $150K of cloud revenue in Q2.
Opportunity Manager, Slovenia