I am a sales person at heart; Queen of the Living room; Goddess of the Conference Room. I love to find technology that will improve the client’s world, and I love to tell the story how technology can acclimate into it. Most people rock, and I enjoy the relationship we make.
But what happens when you make your sales people install that same technology themselves?
Recently we had an issue with a showroom piece that took out some lights at our store and no tech available to fix it. At our weekly meeting, it was proposed that this system is so easy to use that the sales team should be able to make it work. This information was not something I wanted to hear. I know it is terrible; we preach about the simplicity, yet squirm when it is our turn to make it work.
But here are five reasons why having your sales team install gear from time to time is imperative:
1) Teachable ToolNot only will the sales staff truly learn about the product but they will more easily be able to step through simple issues with clients saving both time and money down the road. Instead of pulling a tech off a job, many of these issues can be resolved over the phone.
2) View from the Other SideIf you want your sales staff to truly appreciate your techs, then have them install. Fitting into tight spaces—blind—while the customer leans over you trying to hold a conversation is an experience that cannot be explained. Having a sales person explain how to use the remote to a client might just be the missing training link you have been seeking.
3) Connection ConceptsNever will one truly understand how to connect components until they have done it. I remember many moons ago hooking up my first AV receiver back in the days or S-Video, component, and composite cables, which is quite different from today. Getting all of those units to work together in harmony certainly gives one an appreciation for what installers. Today, while hooking up a few HDMIs may be simpler, there is the added bonus of network connections to keep the waters nice and murky.
4) Better Sales UnderstandingIf I only had a penny for every time a client said, “I’m sure it’s easy,” I might not need to work anymore. I find the sales staff can become desensitized to the time issues out in the field, and this can create tension and money loses. If the sales team thinks it only takes a half hour to swap out a receiver and forgets about calibration, the business is losing money. If they understand the time and effort that goes into such tasks, they’re more likely to estimate time more appropriately.
5) Better PerspectiveGetting out of the office is refreshing. There is a lot to learn about the install side and the adventures one finds on the road. Having your sales people out in the great big world once in awhile, not only teaching them how systems and install works, but also gives them the experience of what can be accomplished by the company.
While I despise change and go on the road kicking and screaming, I often reflect— afterward—on the importance of the experience. I also have found it broadens my perspective; not that I’ll leave the comfort of my office more easily, but I get it. Forcing your people (like me) out of their comfort zone can improve the entire team attitude, the company culture, and even the bottom line.