By Marc Lacoursiere – If you search the Internet for: the hybrid workplace is here to stay, you’ll get over 2.9 million hits. It’s hard to know if this will be the reality forever, but it’s popular right now. According to a recent survey of C-suite executives by McKinsey Company 50 percent of respondents believe their employees should spend most of their time at work. Only three percent believe their entire offices will be remotely staffed1. Regardless, businesses must make decisions to manage what is happening right now. And for most businesses, that means changing the sales process and delegating sales activities differently.
Adapting Our Sales Approach
Over the decades, sales reps have been road warriors, travelling between clients and prospects. They managed virtually all aspects of the client relationship themselves, but the cost of serving clients had been increasing. What we are seeing is client acquisition and account management shifting to multi-channel strategies. They involve multiple people, including in person, inside sales and even chatbots!
Delegating Sales Activities
Managing a new client service model means establishing who does what with clear business rules describing the handoff from team-to-team, person-to-person. Ensure there is overlap to avoid any unintended miscues. For some sales team members, this means learning to let go of specific tasks and delegating them to others who may have more capacity or expertise.
A business that understands who does what well and leverages those strengths can make better decisions on the ground. Consider new client acquisition – not everyone shines at every stage in the funnel: some are good door openers; others skillfully uncover needs during interviews; some write compelling sales proposals, provide effective follow up, and close deals. There are those who excel at managing accounts through penetration and retention skills.
Tracking and Quality
People communicate best face-to-face, but with less of that, the chance of errors is higher. This means our processes must be foolproof. Tracking becomes more important in a virtual world. More businesses are using tools such as customer relationship management (CRM) and other measurement tools to understand what’s getting done well and where you need to improve.
Delegation means change, doing things differently, sometimes letting go of things that might be esteem building, or perhaps inheriting tasks one might prefer not to do. Changing the selling process is not an option for many businesses in order to survive, and we hope you enjoy the ride.
1McKinsey & Co. //mck.co/3i1Y5td
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