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Thread: Are your reps doing more harm than good?

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    Are your reps doing more harm than good?

    Just an idea for those companies that have reps...

    I deal with around 20 - 30 suppliers and most have reps. I do not want to see reps all the time, for me once or twice a year is ample but like to be updated by email if there are any specials or new products on the market. Because I deal in brands unfortunately sometimes you have to deal with a company even though the rep is useless, that's just the way it is. I hate knowing that a portion of my orders is going to a rep that has no interest in my business.

    So the other day I received a phone call from a rep from a company I had been dealing with for a good three years. I was surprised as I had been dealing with the office and was not aware that they had a rep. Turns out he had been the rep for 2 years. And although I was happy with their products I looked around and found a better company to deal with. This is not the first time this has happened, I can think of at least two other examples where I have gone to another company purely on not wanting the commissions on my sales to go to an uninterested rep.

    The moral?

    Always have an "in house" rep that can deal with clients that your reps cannot deal with (ether because of time, laziness or distance)..let that person service the clients properly and pay that person the commissions earned because just knowing that a rep is earning commissions for nothing is a big turn off for customers.

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    Dave A (08-Dec-11)

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Food for thought.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Silver Member Petrichor's Avatar
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    Very good post pap_sak. I totally agree with your point of view. However, I think it is merely because the complexity of measuring effectiveness of sales people or reps in any other terms than revenue generated is what causes the scenario you describe. In a sense, being measured by Revenue, to a certain degree, causes the behaviour seen by reps who has a "do not give a damn about the customer" attitude.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Petrichor View Post
    Very good post pap_sak. I totally agree with your point of view. However, I think it is merely because the complexity of measuring effectiveness of sales people or reps in any other terms than revenue generated is what causes the scenario you describe. In a sense, being measured by Revenue, to a certain degree, causes the behaviour seen by reps who has a "do not give a damn about the customer" attitude.
    It's a tough one, the overall measure of a rep is how much revenue he is bringing in - he will then naturally target the bigger guys and not bother with the smaller boys. I have only ever once had a call from a suppliers "head office" asking when had the rep visited me, email me ect ect, and done properly (not a witch hunt), could be an effective way of deciding which suppliers stay with a rep and which moves "in house". I am going to start dealing with a company next year that I really do not want to deal with because of the rep - but it's a brand I want and have been putting it off for too long.

    BTW I am no saint and I know the service in one of my shops is not brilliant and I have to do something about it...

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