August 16, 2012 1 Comment
I have been working in a sales capacity for about 10 years. During this time, I have witnessed a great change in the way we interact with the customer. In the early days, it was stressed that sales staff must be close to the office phone – just in case we may miss that million dollar call. Much of our communication was through office phone or fax and purchase orders on occasion were submitted to us by post. Although this was only a decade ago it is a sharp contrast to how we as sales people are able to conduct business today. Almost all transactions can be conducted through our smart phone and our customers have the ability to reach us during all waking hours. The office, for all intensive purposes, is always open.
In theory, this advancement in technology should make selling an easier task. These advancements however have made sales more challenging as well. In the past your competitors may have been limited to other local business or other known entities within your industry. Today we complete with a global market place. Household and business consumers are able to gain as much competitive knowledge as they want, right at their fingertips. The only real limit to this is the time an individual is willing to invest. It was about 400 years ago when the phrase “knowledge is power” was coined. In that time only the wealthy had access to books and had the literacy utilize their full potential. Today we live in a world where society is eager to share what they have learned. If you have a question on almost anything, a quick Google search will offer an abundance of answers for you to sort through. There is no room for any degree of complacency.
Personally, I love how easy it is to connect with our customers now. Also, I love the freedom to not be contained to a desk and still be able to conduct business with ease.
Also, I believe that ironically it has allowed us to go back to the old school practice of visiting our customers face to face. We no longer have the concern about being away from our phones and emails for days on end.