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Transforming Your Sales Force for the 21st Century
The book, written for sales managers and executives in the distribution industry, provides a blue print for executives to transform their sales forces into highly directable, effective, focused performers.
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Developing Your Salespeople

Copyright 2001, by Dave Kahle.

Which of these issues are worrying you these days?
  • Keeping the good salespeople you have?
  • Motivating your salespeople?
  • Stimulating your salespeople to become more productive?
  • Attracting good quality, new salespeople?
If you are concerned about any one of these issues, you are not alone.

These are near the top of almost every businessperson's list these days. With good reason. If you can positively resolve each of these issues, you'll go a long way to profitably growing your business. If you can't, you may have a very rocky road ahead of you.

Now, suppose you could focus on one initiative that would help positively resolve each of these issues. With one simple move, you could help yourself on every one of these troublesome issues. Is there such an initiative? IS THERE ONE thing you can do that will help you keep the good salespeople you have, motivate your salespeople, stimulate your salespeople to become more productive, and attract good quality candidates?

The answer? Of course there is. It's this: You can build a systematic approach to developing your salespeople. And in successfully accomplishing that one thing you'll resolve all the others.

First a definition. By "development" I mean this: "Continuous improvement in the knowledge, processes, skills and tools necessary to be ever more effective and efficient." I don't mean that once a month you have a sales meeting when you talk about problems, new company policies and procedures or discuss a new product. Those kinds of meetings are necessary, but hardly sufficient.

Nor does it mean that you expect your salespeople to learn on the job by trial and error. At best, that is a very time consuming and costly approach. At worst, it leads to mediocre performance, confusion and frustration on the part of the sales person as well as his boss. Most companies who claim to do on the job training are really making an excuse for their lack of ability to do anything better.

I don't know of any other sophisticated area of human labor where it is expected that every practitioner will figure out how to do the job well on his/her own. I, for one, would not want to settle into my seat on an airplane and have the pilot announce that he's figured out how to fly this plane on his own. Nor do I want to put my life in the hands of surgeon who learned a surgical procedure by trial and error. The list can go on and on. It includes almost any profession you can think of: lawyers, teachers, social workers, ministers, engineers, repair technicians, etc. In every one of these sophisticated jobs, there is a body of knowledge, of principles and procedures, that the practitioners are expected to master. While all of these professions expect people to practice, none of them expect them to learn the basic principles on their own by trial and error.

Are field salespeople somehow different? Are their jobs so simple that it's easy to learn how to do it well? Or, are they some how super intelligent and able to figure it all out on their own? Clearly the answer to both questions is NO. Sales is an incredibly formidable profession that offers its practitioners a lifetime of challenge. No salesperson is ever as good as he/she could be. And salespeople are no more nor less intelligent then than counterparts among teachers, social workers, ministers, and the like.

Not only that, but every other profession expects its members to continually improve themselves. Show me a doctor, lawyer, CPA, teacher, social worker, minister, etc who has not gone back for additional training and development in the last two years and I'll show you one who is either retired or dead. Show me a salesperson that hasn't invested in improving themselves in the last two years and I'll show you 80% of the salespeople in this country.

Why is that? One major reason is that most of the companies for whom they work don't require continuous improvement. One of the main reasons they don't require it is that they don't know how to pull it off. So they busy themselves with "product-oriented" sales meetings and complain often about unmotivated salespeople.

Dave Kahle offers a variety of resources that can help your business stay competitive in changing times. To learn you can reach Dave by phone at 800-331-1287 or send him an email request.

Transforming Your Sales Force for the 21st Century
Transforming Your Sales Force for the 21st Century
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Distribution companies, by their nature, should be sales-oriented companies. But, most distributors don't do sales very well. That's the premise behind this new book.

The book, written for sales managers and executives in the distribution industry, provides a blue print for executives to transform their sales forces into highly directable, effective, focused performers.

The book begins with an analysis of current conditions that pressure the distributor to revise the way he/she thinks about his sales force. Kahle then paints a picture of the distributor sales force of the future. The sales force will be:
  1. more specialized
  2. more directable
  3. more flexible
  4. more professional
  5. more productive.
His advice begins with "See it as a system," a concept that is based on one of the key principles for the book, "When you change the structure, you change the behavior of the people who work within that structure."
Dave Kahle has trained tens of thousands of B2B salespeople, sales managers and business owners to be more effective in the 21st Century economy. He's authored nine books, and presented in 47 states and seven countries. To access Dave's training, insights and tools online, visit The Sales Resource Center. Visit www.davekahle.com to check out a seminar near you.
 
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