The Field Rep's BFF – Telesales

26 Mar

Every company has them – the field rep that considers themselves the lone cowboy, the sniper that single-handily closes big deals. They take pride in making their number all by themselves with minimal involvement from others. They often don’t want anyone else in their account or insist that all communication goes thru them. And since they’re often successful, no one in management tells them to sell differently.

cowboy sniper doortodoor

From personal experience, I’m saying that the field rep that does not embrace their telesales rep is leaving money on the table. If you can do 100% of your number by yourself, imagine what you can do with a telesales rep helping you.

When I started in telesales, I supported a team of field reps that sold into the US government’s secret DoD agencies – you know the ones with the 3 letter acronyms. These field reps saw no value is a telesales rep that could not prospect for them since cold calling into the agencies was illegal. And yet their comp plan said that they had to share the sale with their telesales rep. My telesales predecessor quit because of the animosity of these field reps. So my immediate goal was not to win customers but win over my field reps. Since the comp plan was not changing, the field reps and I came up with creative ways I could support them and have them feel I added value. Some of the things that we agreed Telesales would do for the field rep included:

* Doing all quotes
* Processing all orders
* Updating the CRM system – contacts, notes, tasks, opportunities, calendar
* Handling inbound requests from customers & prospects

Since I could not help them at the beginning of the sales cycle, I showed my value at the end of the sales cycle. And once they and their customers got used to working with me and saw how quickly I could respond since I was always in the office, my relationship with the field reps improved dramatically. And as more customers called, I was able to help earlier in the sales cycle, too.

The field rep’s ultimate expression of their trust in me was adding me to their voice mail. “Hi, this is your field rep, please leave a message at the beep. But for immediate attention, call Michael at 867-5309.”

Now that I’m in the field, I work with my telesales rep to maximize our selling potential together. Comp plans are generic so they don’t take into account the nuances of every territory. When I develop my territory plan at the beginning of the year, I include my telesales rep. Because I know if I can do 100% by myself, then I can do 150-200% with my BFF – the telesales rep.

One Response to “The Field Rep's BFF – Telesales”

  1. Trish Bertuzzi March 31, 2008 at 2:57 pm #

    Michael, you hit the nail on the head! Figuring out how to most effectively partner as resources is the foundation of successful selling. Look what it did for Nicole and Paris!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: