Which Half of Your Sales & Management Effort is Working?

John Wanamaker once said, "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don't know which half!"

This is, of course, the reason frequency is such an important element of marketing.

It is also an important element of selling and of sales management. We must be diligent in our efforts to maintain a proactive and persistent posture when selling, and we must do the same when engaged in sales management which many believe is simply a "higher level of selling."

The key reason for this fact is that we can never be sure about which component of our effort is going to be effective at any specific time.

In other words, time spent coaching a Rep today may, in fact, pay off immediately or it may not pay off for a month or two; time spent presenting good reasons for a policy or procedure may not truly result in team buy-in on the spot, but might do so over time. Just like John Wanamaker, we just can't be sure

If we fail to interact with our customers, pospects or sales people with sufficient frequency, and if we fail to reaffirm the value associated with our products, services and our orgnaizations as well as our personal value, then we will most likely fail as sales people and sales managers.

This requires consistent, straightforward and strategic communication. Not only must we possess strong communication skills, but also (as the term implies) plan our approach. While many tend to think about communication in terms of “speaking,” the truly critical skills are:

  • Planning
  • Probing
  • Listening
  • Proactive style

As prudent sales managers, we must be aware of the critical role our communication plays in the day-to-day execution of our jobs; the way in which we communicate will have a significant impact on the people we lead.

We should also be ever-aware of the importance of establishing and reaffirming our personal value – the value we provide to our sales team each and every day; the value we provide by helping them achieve success; the value we provide by helping them maintain focus on the right things; the value we provide by continually reminding them that the job can be done and they can do it.

See related article outlining a proactive sales management system.


Proactive Sales Management