Sales People are the key to SALES!

September 2, 2009 by Shirleen Von Hoffmann Leave a reply »

Why do you think some Companies and some Managers forget the fact that their Sales People are the key to Sales and are the touch point to Prospects and Customers?key

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15 Responses

  1. kevin morrow says:

    EGO – it takes a big ego to take the risks most independent builders take. So when times are good it is because of them and they feel they can hire retail clerks (Bambi syndrome), when times are slow – it is the salespersons fault – not the economy, the bad subdivision next to a nuclear power plant that is overpriced with bad floorplans. I really wish I had more of an opinion on this. BTW my builders isn’t like this anymore!

  2. Yes, Kevin, I would say you have an opinion on this question! LOL Thanks for the response.

  3. Todd Bagley says:

    Todd Bagley
    CEO for …

    Great post and question.

    Are you are talking about how firms treat their MVP’s… reps who work a two year sales cycle, bring in the initial order inside (which may be a trial order, so it is far less than even 10% of the lifetime revenue potential of the customer), and then get told that another less-qualified, lower-cost employee will now “take over” and manage the account?

    Or did you have some other scenario in mind?

  4. Yes Todd, you hit the nail on the head. LOL Thanks for the post!

  5. Michael Costello says:

    Thanks for the chance to comment on this. I would say ego and respect. Often managers have a degree, where as many sales people do not. So how could a salesperson possibly know more than the company or manager. It takes a special manager to be able to ask for input from anyone, never mind the lowly salesperson. Missing out on anyones input, especially people that are on the front line is a course of if not complete failure, one that just simply makes the company less successful. Just read the ads in any paper, and see what clever idea the marketing team came up with to generate a sale. $10,000 discount, buy-down interest rate, foreclosure pricing, and of that sound familar? But how many ads even mention the quality of the home or company? Front line people, see and feel for what works and certainly what doesn’t; take a minute and ask, you’ll be shocked, they might actually have something to say.

  6. Micheal,

    Thanks for the comment. I couldn’t agree with you more. I don’t know about the degree thing, that may or may not be true, I know alot of Managers without degrees, most were just good salespeople prior to taking the management position. But getting input from the field and being the touch point to the customer is right on target.

    Watch for my article next…on this very subject.

    Thanks for the reply.

  7. bill farquharson says:

    ….and yet some of my most successful customers make money WITHOUT sales people because the reps are not interested in selling digital printing. They simply don’t care about small orders (that add up) placed repeatedly. Go figure!

    Bill Farquharson
    Aspire For
    Training, Coaching, Landscaping. Just kidding

  8. Joni Fisher says:

    What I have been trying to understand is why Sales/Business Development is the only profession that is penalized for doing well? The 2-year sales tenure is right on; it seems that companies either divvy up the territory, increase goals exponentially with no additional support/tools or promote the Superstar into management to cap commissions? When sales people are RIF’d is it because Companies are eliminating non-producers or trying to get around payouts? Unbelievable 🙁

    You are right, sales people are the connection between the customer and the Organization. Is it no wonder clients get frustrated with the lack of continuity within Organizations? This seems crazy to me…

  9. Tom Wolf says:

    Joni, as a rep I wondered the same thing and as a manager I would hear management complain that sales people make too much money. Before I go further I would like to say that some companies still understand the value of their sales organization, but many others view it as a cog in the wheel. This becomes frustrating to the Sales/BD folks. Many of the people I know talk about recourses being cut and quotas continue to grow during this historic downturn; you’re right on about being penalized for good performance. Can you image if a CEO walk up to a VP and said Great Job last year, working 60 hour weeks, putting the company first, etc. Then saying your next years comp package will give 20% less annual income if do the same output, but if you push yourself to 70 hours a week you can match last years comp – Good Luck! I believe in raising the bar and continuing to push forward; however there are market research numbers that should play into this evaluation. A company should not raise ones quota more that the expected rate of growth for the industry they are in, market they support, etc.

  10. Scott Hudson says:

    Great discussion–I work for HR Chally and we do a great deal of Research on Sales–We last conducted our World Class Sales Research in 2007 and the findings from that research are below–we plan to update this early in 2010. It will be interesting to see what the changes are–particularly with the recent economic challenges.

    We typically begin discussions with clients by asking the following three questions—Whats most important to your success?

    •You’re Products/Solutions/Services?
    •You’re Products/Solutions/Services Quality?
    •You’re Products/Solutions/Services Pricing?

    HR Chally’s most recently published World Class Sales Research found for the first time; the Sales Representative has become the single biggest factor (39%) in a customer’s purchasing decision. No other factor, not the product, not its quality nor pricing equals the impact of a Sales Person. Product differentiation, pricing and quality have been neutralized because of process methodologies such as Six Sigma, Lean, ISO and TQM.

    If anyone is interested in the executive summary–let me know and i will be happy to send it out!


  11. Tom and Joni,

    Thanks for the replies. I couldn’t agree more and do elaborate on this subject. Watch for my article on this exact subject, making these same points.

  12. Bill,
    I am sure there are companies who make sales without Sales People, however the nature of this conversation is companies who have Sales People.

  13. Ken Gazella says:

    I fully embrace my Sales Team to be the best they can be, and understand they are the Key to the sale, I hope thy feel the same way.

    Ken Gezella
    Region Sales Manager at MHI Plantation/Coventry Homes

  14. Dorathy Tahloe says:

    Our sales people are extremely important to our success. Now more than ever they are needed to keep homes selling.

    Dorathy Tayloe, MIRM, CMP, CSP
    Sales Manager at Daniel Homes

  15. Dorathy and Ken,

    You are the kind of SM’s our world needs more of…Thanks for the comments!

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