As I peer into the bottom of my teacup at the end of the week to see what reading the lifeless tea leaves tell me, I am left pondering the number of corridor and café conversations I have partaken in over recent weeks with various B2B Head of Sales.  Moreover, I am cogitating a trend that threads these miscellaneous conversations together………….and it is a trend that leaves me unsettled.  Even a bit disturbed.

I have oft written about the virtues of a systematic, cultural, even evangelic zest for good sales teams to gather defensible data or estimates to gauge each customer and prospect on their potential value (ie the customer/prospect companies consumption or throughput of all the products and services in the categories in which your company competes).  Of course, this exercise, which should be on-going and an integral component of sales team optimisation and the sales process, becomes increasingly difficult, the more your company operates in a complex value chain and distribution channel environment.  Data sharing, access and integrity become increasingly more challenging in this scenario.

Problem is, as has been borne out in my recent corridor and café conversations, that too many Heads of Sales, and their sales  teams throw their hands up in the air and put it into the too-hard basket.  Counter-intuitively, the reality that gathering PV data in that type of environment is difficult, is the very reason these Heads of Sales SHOULD NOT walk away from their responsibility.  Because if they can carve a pathway through lack of data sharing, access and integrity they will be ahead of their competitors who still have their hands thrown up in their air in dismay!

Come back next week and lets kick around the “how and why”.