It is easy to slip into the Best Supporting Rep role. Filling an urgent client request or fixing a problem begets customer gratitude, and, we all want to feel appreciated. When the positive feedback from the “need to please” becomes your driver, overall business can suffer however. Being dependent on customer kudos can compromise your ability to prioritize what is in your funnel. You need a balanced sales approach.
Balanced Sales – Adjusting Your Approach
Customer/rep codependency is easy to spot. You are paying lots of attention to select customers but losing ground on new prospects and accounts. Certain key accounts are being neglected. Despite working long hours to please your customers, you feel you can’t keep up. If you find yourself struggling to put more balance in your sales approach, try these ideas.
- Delegate – Let someone else in your organization promptly return calls. Your support staff is generally equipped to handle most issues and to arrange shipping or hotshot delivery. Once a situation is resolved, you can follow up with a text to your customer. Avoid a phone call so you don’t create a situation where you become overly involved.
- Realign resources – If you have allowed the customer to become dependent on you as the authority figure you need to realign resources. Offer your overly dependent customer the name of someone else inside your organization that can help him. Also suggest that he take advantage of what your store or warehouse have to offer if he goes there directly.
- Create the right expectation – For customers that call often, arrange a meeting to review call frequency and visits. Many times customers don’t realize that they are contacting you too often. When they do, they will normally participate in corrective actions that get their problems solved just as effectively.
A respectful understanding
The best salespeople built strong relationships. These can make you feel obligated to be available at all times. Using the guidelines above, you can achieve a respectful understanding of your professional responsibilities to your customers. With a balanced approach to sales, you will still feel appreciated but not overwhelmed.