Question: What is your opinion of call reports?
It depends on what you mean by call reports. If, for example, you mean a requirement in your company that you note down somewhere – on a laptop, tablet, smart phone or piece of paper, who you called on, what you talked about, what the resolution of the sales call was and what you are going to talk about the next time, then, of course you should be doing that. I can’t imagine a sales person not keeping good records of his or her sales calls.
If you mean some smaller version of this that you send to your manager, I’m not necessarily in favor of this, but I certainly don’t oppose the idea. Your employer is paying your wages, and has a right to know what you are doing with your time. If, in your situation, your employer chooses to require you to fill out a document that tells him or her what you were doing and where you were, that is his or her prerogative.
I guess I am more offended by the idea that as a sales person you have no responsibility to be accountable for your time. I’m sorry, I don’t believe that. You ought to be using your time effectively, giving your employer at least a full day of thoughtful, effective actions. That’s the moral, right, and professional thing to do.
I only know of two reasons why you would object to having to fill out a call report. First, you may object to the time that it takes. Honestly, that’s a small thing. Your employer has a right to know what you are doing, and if it takes a half hour to provide him with the information he wants, so be it. It comes with the job.
The other reason someone would object to call reports is that he or she objectives to being held accountable. My response is “get over it.” If you are using your time effectively, you have nothing to hide. If you’re not, then you probably should be worried about what the call reports will unveil.
More and more, these days, this whole issue is moot. The ubiquitous use of CRM software allows a manager to see everything, and more, that a call report usually provides. So, be diligent about using the company’s CRM system, and the whole notion of call reports becomes a thing of the past.