A couple weeks ago while driving from Phoenix to Santa Fe, we stopped to visit the Very Large Array. I wrote a post on this topic on April 26th because it was fascinating to see how the scientists were directly involved in explaining this complex facility to the public. Their excitement got me excited to learn more and write that post. This is similar to the experience I have had hundreds of times talking to technology creators, their passion gets others excited about their work. So why does almost every company have product managers, account managers, sales managers, sales engineers, application engineers, sales people, and sometimes all these (or more)? There are a few contrarians, companies who eliminate the “necessary evil” of sales people and have engineers do it all. These people get titles like “forward deployed engineers,” but aren’t they now just highly trained sales people? In my experience as a sales manager, it comes down to what excites people. Those engineers explaining the VLA probably would not be excited after a couple weeks of traveling around “pitching” the VLA to others, that’s why the videos were genius, it transmitted their excitement and they only had to do it once. Then they could go back to what really excited them, making a better orthomode transducer or correlator.
Great sales people also get excited about technologies they sell and have the ability to transmit that excitement, but they love the sales process itself. They love finding the customer, developing the relationship through helping them solve their problem, and getting the “reward” of the successful sale. They don’t mind the repetition because the rewards (financial and psychological) are so compelling.
So can this gap be bridged with today’s technologies? Could the sales process be replaced with technology? I will leave you with a few links and the teaser that every step in this direction could have a major impact on your organization (obviously!). To be continued.
Are Sales People About to Become Extinct – http://www.salesarchitects.net/articledet.php?aid=62
Want Your Company to Grow, Fire Your Managers – http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20130320152447-5799319-want-your-company-to-grow-fire-your-managers
No Sales People, Just Forward Deployed Engineers – http://jackmalcolm.com/blog/2011/11/no-salespeople-just-forward-deployed-engineers/