How to respond to the scarcity of manpower in the sales world?

rodolphe meynier Published by Rodolphe Meynier – 28 September 2023

Act on 3 key aspects of sales optimization

Labour shortages affect companies at all levels, and can significantly slow down operations and the achievement of growth objectives. Like everything else, the sales function is also affected. How can sales react to this particular situation without losing feathers? It’s time to optimize: resources, assets and strategies.

Optimizing the sales function involves three key factors: the customer portfolio, salespeople’s activities and their skills. For these three important cogs, external factors (market, competition, economy, weather, etc.) must be well considered, while internal factors (pricing, marketing, training, support, etc.) must be judiciously managed. In times of limited sales resources, it’s important for the manager to keep a close eye on his or her team, to support and motivate them on a daily basis.

To optimize customer portfolio management, you need to qualify each customer and put all your energy in the right place. Keeping loyal customers requires a sustained and attentive relationship, growing with the customer, remaining a present and invested growth partner. Customers with strong sales potential need to be thoroughly analyzed in terms of their past, present and future needs, their business vision and their objectives, so as to be able to provide them with an adapted offer. You also need to keep your finger on the pulse of what’s happening in your territory, to identify the right prospects and make sure you don’t miss out on any opportunities.

The activities of the sales team need to be continuously analyzed to ensure that they remain focused on the strategy and objectives to be achieved. The manager’s mission is to ensure that customer interventions are of sufficient quality and quantity, and that each one is rigorously followed up with all sales staff. The sales team’s performance can only be optimized if activities are properly managed.

Last but not least, skills development will always remain a valuable tool for progress for all team members. Motivating the troops inevitably requires both individual and collective investment in their professional development, through the continuous improvement of their know-how, their interpersonal skills, their work environment and their quality of life.

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