Sales and Marketing working together
I’ve now been asked by two different clients if I could put together a training event to teach Marketing people about Sales. Being a Marketing person my automatic response was to ask, Why? In one case the CEO had told both functions to work together better, or else. The Sales Director thought that training Marketing people on selling was the way to make this happen. You can imagine what the Marketing people thought about that idea.
After some discussion I got agreement that imposing “training” on a group of people on a subject that they thought had limited value was not the answer. Marketing people do not want to be turned into Sales people and the “challenge” handed down by the CEO could end up being even further away from being met.
We then spent some time brainstorming what would motivate Sales and Marketing people to work better together. Perhaps not surprisingly the common theme was the opportunity to make themselves and their functions more successful.
The next step was to work out how we could achieve this.
The sentence that changed everything
Together we came up with one simple sentence that would have a dramatic effect and became the catalyst for change. The CEO agreed and announced it to the whole company. He simply said “Sales and Marketing will be held jointly responsible for delivering the revenue and profit objectives this year”.
Almost immediately the mood changed. Sales and Marketing got together to work out how they could ensure success. I worked with them to develop a simple plan of action and to support them where they needed it.
The next realisation was that Sales and Marketing needed the support of other functions in the business if they were going to be successful. To get that support they used the same Sales/Marketing skill sets that they have been using on customers for years. They worked. Even in Finance.
Everyone in the company ended up being trained. Not on selling but on what customers really wanted and their part in delivering it. This pulled together the whole company and the plan worked. At the end of the year the financial objectives were met.
Here is a short link to a similar case study in another company but with a bit more detail http://bit.ly/1rG2mRW
If you have a challenge getting Sales and Marketing to work well together perhaps we should talk.