I suspect that most parents with young kids have kitchen tables with wooden tops, not the glass tabletop that we have. Our six-year old son and his friends manage to get more of a mess on the underside of the tabletop than on the top side. So, if the parents with wooden tabletops don't see the mess, does that mean it isn't there?
Many executives take the same approach with their sales forces. The problems that prevent salespeople from achieving the desired results, are on the underside of the salespeople - under the skin. Executives may see symptoms, like failing to hit quota, not enough new appointments, or low conversion rates. They may even see more subtle symptoms, like too much talking and not enough listening and asking questions. But they don't see The Mess, the underside, the reasons for that behavior. And if they don't see it, it must not exist.
That's where the uncertain economy comes in. As more companies are affected by the economy and more salespeople struggle to get business closed, executives begin to realize that there is a mess underneath; they just can't see it because their salespeople aren't made of glass. But there are fingerprints under there, the DNA of sales effectiveness, and there will never be a better time to get that mess cleaned up. Have your sales force evaluated, discover what's underneath, clean up your mess, and watch sales soar, even in an uncertain economy.
(c) Copyright 2008 Dave Kurlan