What many #sales driven organizations sometimes forget (and how not to)

I’ve observed organizations keeping no stones unturned to sell their stuff.

From hiring (so-called) intelligent management grads from top B-schools to making a wild number of on-site visits to making a local veteran with 40 years of industry experience overloaded with more functions than he can justify – just so that other persons can focus on sales…. means getting the “Goat” in the box!

Photo Credit: Shahrokh Dabiri’s Flickr photostream

Such organizations focus solely on increasing sales. To do that, they run aggressive campaigns, extensive cold calling, participate in many trade-shows, do a large number of on-site sales visits etc. – all the time they are running, running and running… to find more customers to sell their stuff.

They do not like to invest their time in making their operations process-based/effective. Investing in industry standard certifications like CMM or ISO 9001 and the discipline that is required to maintain such certifications is a waste of energy for them. Instead, they rely on an individual’s skills to get things done. In essence, they are neglecting to measure the quality of services or the products they are providing.

Often they overlook the basic principle that if the service you provide or the product you sell is outstanding; it will sell itself!

I’m not saying that aggressive marketing efforts are bad, I’m just saying that equal attention should be given to operations part of the business as well.

Such a biased mindset negatively impacts their employees, their family life, and the overall business over the long run. Such organizations end up with the poor group of employees who are just helpless people who don’t have any other career option available and hence are staying with them.

And such organizations expect that such employees will take care of their business. Can it really happen?

Here is one way to fix this problem to an extent: validate the quality of their products and services from the customer’s perspective and ensure the right delivery.

They can:

  1. be their own customer. Call their customer service department to talk with one of the executives. Call at different times. What kind of experience do they get with different executives?
  2. hire external consultants or ask their friends to just walk-in like their real-time customers… get the report of their experiences.
  3. ask their employees, “Would you buy the services that your organization offers?”  they should also drill into the reasons.

Now they should observe the pattern of the answers. Do these patterns resemble anything? If yes then they know what to do.