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When sales staff quit, clients switch over!
Dr. Shridhar LollaCVMark Consultinglolla@cvmark.comFebruary 2009.Visakhapatnam, INDIA(Based on discussion with Dadji, Owner of a large printing press)Owners often complain that they continue to loose clients because they loose salespeople. When sales staff leave the organization, they move out along with the clients.1.This places organization at the mercy of sales staff, 2. Sales staff do leave andorganization undergoes tremendous pressure to obtain new clients (knowing that a newclient cost more than 5 times retaining an existing client). 3. Attrition of sales staff impacts its top line and growth. The disturbances in sales lines, takes a lot of management attention, and prevents it from focusing on real issues i.e. growth.Owners also complain that sometime, sales staff over commit offer to clients and theorganization has difficulty in meeting deliveries. While the organization is able to blamethe sales staff, at the client end some thing different occurs. Upon the non-performance of orders, the unaligned sales staff, often, tend to isolate themselves from the organizationand give an impression to the client that everything is ok with the sales process but herorganization has run out of capacity or certain capabilities. Thus, for the client, theorganization becomes the scapegoat. Situation worsens when the sales staff do not shareerrors caused by organization and blame the organization for a faulty deliveries.Sales is the front end activity of the organization. A sales is actually the front line of attack for an organization. Sales staff know this, very well. In a majority of organizations, often one gets an order because of the company and more often, because of ones own skills and relationship with the clients. In several businesses, where theorganization (or its top management ) is not able to be in direct touch with the clients, therelationship is purely the relationship between the sales person and the client.The client relationship often has a degree of unpredictability in terms of performance,price , supply, returns, customer care& relationship, etc. And it is necessary to maintainthis relationship on an ongoing basis and sales staff (in some case, CRMs) do this. Withintwo or three transactions, an average sales person is able to establish a good rapport withthe client and is able to enter into her buying DNA. Not much of ones knowledge andrelationship is, though, passed onto the organization that is content with the transactionitself. In such cases, the relationship between client and the supplier in actually a thinline, while that between the sales staff and the client is a solid line. No doubt that theclients walks away when the sales staff change their organization.