The correct answer is, “Every, single, one of them. Yes, all of your employees are in sales. Some work directly with client’s while others are behind the scenes. However, whether the employee has the title of salesperson or production assistant their quality of work, commitment to service, and communication with customers all impact the sales cycle.
I think I’ve made my point, and if I have then you must agree because to some extent everyone on your team affects sales. If all employees are in sales then everyone on your team can impact the sales process are they getting the sales training they need? Good question, isn’t it? It’s been my observation that in most cases the answer is no.
How Do Employees Impact Sales?
90% of your employees use social media daily. Many post images and content about work. Consumers see these. A few potential customers even search for them. Derogatory comments about the workplace, co-workers, or management do not put your organization in a favorable light to prospective clients. A client recently asked me what to do about an employee who complained on Facebook about how difficult a customer was to work with. I advised them to reach out offline and apologize to the customer. It was an important customer, and they lost the business. But the other thing needed was training. The organization had no social media policy, or training. Although it would seem common sense should prevail when posting about a customer – it didn’t.
In a perfect world all employees would conduct themselves in a professional manner, not only in the shop or around customers, but anytime they represented the organization, including social networks. But that’s not always the case, is it? Teaching teammates what this means is simple – it means being courteous, respectful, and supportive, not mean, snarky, and cynical, which is what we see far too much of on social media. It also means not sharing trade secrets or information about customers such as photos without a release. Do you monitor what’s being said about your business online? Do you conduct customer contact and customer service training? Shouldn’t you? Since all of your employees are in sales shouldn’t you monitor what they’re saying about your business?
Quality Products and Services
The quality of product and service directly impact sales whether the production and service teams ever communicate with a client. Inferior quality products don’t inspire reorders. It’s challenging to develop it’s customer loyalty without employees understanding the value of customers and how what each employee does makes a difference. Time and time again I’ve observed employees who think of customers as a nuisance who gets in the way of getting the job done. If you’ve ever heard teammates complain about customers – you know what I mean. Change begins when you show employees how critical what they do is to sales and explain that without sales the company no longer exists. And that when it comes down to it all employees are in sales.
Work areas and employees should present a professional appearance. Do you have a dress code? Is it taught and enforced? Do you conduct housekeeping? If you looked at your business through the eyes of a customer, vendor, banker, what do you see? Would you buy from you, extend a line of credit, or loan your business money based on the appearance of your operation?
I remember my dad taking his car to an automotive shop, finding it dirty and unorganized, and deciding against trusting them to repair his vehicle. I thought auto shops got dirty, so I asked my father why he didn’t trust them. He said he’d never trust his car to someone who didn’t take better care of his or her own shop.
Here are a few examples of training exercises with teammates that can help and support sales.
- Develop and then train scripts
- Share how employees should conduct themselves when wearing company apparel in public
- Train mindful driving and set the expectations for driving company vehicles
- Discuss appropriate behavior at networking events, trade shows, conferences, etc.
- Provide social media guidelines
Is Your “Sales” Team Trained?
If you accept that all employees impact sales at some level, then it only makes sense to give your team the training it needs. To expect teammates to make the best decision for the company without giving then the direction they need is a recipe for disappointment. If your operation isn’t investing in this training with your entire team isn’t about time to do so?
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