Walking a tightrope looks easy from the spectator seats, and learning the basics of smart sales tools can also appear simple at first. However, as with any powerful set of tools, improper implementation can lead to negative results.
Successful selling is all about good time management and having the correct set of tools and skills. Statistically, sales should increase by 25 percent if you increase your working time by 25 percent, but by implementing smart cloud and communications solutions balanced with careful time management the same result is possible without the additional hours.
Tools were created to make specific tasks easier. Using a sledgehammer to cut glass would lead to a debacle. The same holds true for today’s smart tools. For example, improper implementation could result in excessive micromanagement, which can undermine employee morale rather than achieve the desired goal of creating an atmosphere infused with energy and innovation.
The key is a proper balance of management supervision and team incentives. Each member of the team should be able to act independently and feel they own the process. Pride of ownership is always a great motivator for success. Try providing your sales and marketing teams with a solid direction, and then allow them to run with it. The often-used sink or swim moniker for this method does it an injustice. Experience has clearly demonstrated that implementing this approach attracts a higher quality employee and achieves better results. Plus, today’s smart tools allow managers to monitor an employee’s activity without being intrusive, and if employees get in over their heads you can always throw them a life buoy.
Falling is not the problem for tightrope walkers – it is the sudden stop at the bottom. The same adage applies to sales and marketing managers. If sales begin to fall and the trend gains momentum, the results will not be pretty. Fortunately, today’s smart cloud and communications solutions provide managers with a terrific safety net. They are easy to use and can help generate additional sales. However, they do not have a full autopilot option yet and still need human managers to administer operations, which if you think about it, is a good thing. You are still needed.
Max Schroeder (News - Alert) is Vice President Emeritus of FaxCore Inc. (www.faxcore.com) and managing director of the DPCF.
Edited by Maurice Nagle