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BUS 39 W — Data-Driven Sales

Quarter: Fall
Course Format: Online (System Requirements)
Duration: 7 weeks
Date(s): Sep 30—Nov 15
Drop Deadline: Oct 3
Unit: 1
Tuition: $565
Instructor(s): Ken Niese
Limit: 45
Status: Closed
Please Note: Online courses have a new refund policy. The full tuition refund deadline for this course is October 3rd at 5:00 pm (PT); 50% tuition refund deadline is October 8th at 5:00 pm (PT).
Sep 30—Nov 15
7 weeks
Drop By
Oct 3
1 Unit
Ken Niese
Please Note: Online courses have a new refund policy. The full tuition refund deadline for this course is October 3rd at 5:00 pm (PT); 50% tuition refund deadline is October 8th at 5:00 pm (PT).
Sales is no longer only an art. It is driven by scientific methods of data collection and experimentation. Organizations need to design their sales teams and processes based on the observations and conclusions found within their customer interactions. Armed with the right data, today’s companies can make their sales teams exponentially more productive by applying thorough analysis to sales information.

In this course, you will learn the core metrics of successful sales teams and how to design metrics unique to your business. You will understand what data you will gather, how your sales reps will collect it, and how you will use it. You will also use real-world studies to draw conclusions about the most effective sales processes, team structures, compensation plans, and lead generation. Additionally, you will learn how successful sales organizations rely on an operations team to optimize their sales prospecting, sales reporting, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, and sales incentives. By the end of the course, you will understand how to use data to achieve the optimal convergence of three opposing forces in sales: what customers want to buy, what salespeople want to sell, and what the company is in business to sell.


  • Course sizes are limited.
    You won't have 5,000 classmates. This course's enrollment is capped at 45 participants.

  • Frequent interaction with the instructor.
    You aren't expected to work through the material alone. Instructors will answer questions and interact with students on the discussion board and through weekly video meetings.

  • Study with a vibrant peer group.
    Stanford Continuing Studies courses attract thoughtful and engaged students who take courses for the love of learning. Students in each course will exchange ideas with one another through easy-to-use message boards as well as optional weekly real-time video conferences.

  • Direct feedback from the instructor.
    Instructors will review and offer feedback on assignment submissions. Students are not required to turn in assignments, but for those who do, their work is graded by the instructor.

  • Courses offer the flexibility to participate on your own schedule.
    Course work is completed on a weekly basis when you have the time. You can log in and participate in the class whenever it's convenient for you. If you can’t attend the weekly video meetings, the sessions are always recorded for you and your instructor is just an email away.

  • This course is offered through Stanford Continuing Studies.
    To learn more about the program, visit our About Us page. For more information on the online format, please visit the FAQ page.

Ken Niese, Director Sales Operations, Angie’s List

Ken Niese has applied sales operations principles for over fifteen years to enhance the productivity of sales teams across sectors as diverse as technology, manufacturing, security products, and background screening. He specializes in optimizing the people, processes, and tools to support successful sales management. Prior to Angie’s List, Niese worked at First Advantage, Ingersoll Rand, MYOB, among others. He received an MBA from UC Davis.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required)  WW Chee, The Sales Operations Handbook: A Primer on the Sales Operations Function (ISBN 978-1978061989)