• 18th March 2007 - By proteman

    Last night I watched the cute Kate Hudson, Matthew McConaughy film, How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days. It’s not The Godfather or Citizen Kane, but it’s light and mindless. In it, Kate Hudson is writing a fluff magazine article on things women do that push guys away. You’ll have to see the movie yourself to see some of the chic-sins she commits (like moving personal belongings into his apartment after a first date). The funny part was (gasp) that we’ve ALL done some version of these stupid things in some relationship – we were just too close to the relationship to see it at the time.

    So in the spirit of that movie, and for all of us who have done stupid things to push people away without realizing it, this blog is a10-day primer for sales managers. Read on to find out how to LOSE A SALESREP IN TEN DAYS!

    Day 1:
    Give the rep a sales goal that’s way out of reach. Confide in the rep, “I know it’s way too high, but it was handed down to me by someone at the top. I think they pull these numbers out of a hat…and we get stuck with them!”

    Day 2:
    Forget to ask about his kid who broke his leg on the playground yesterday.

    Day 3:
    When he gives you that 20-page Excel report you asked him for last month, say with a look of surprise, “Oh, you were still working on that? We dropped that project a few weeks ago. Hope you didn’t spend too much time on it!”

    Day 4:
    Schedule a performance review meeting with him. Miss it. Then email later saying you’re sorry – and that you got called into an important meeting.

    Day 5:
    Give him feedback and tips for how he can improve his sales performance. You haven’t been in the field with him for months.

    Day 6:
    Call in the evening during his family dinner to ask why a big deal didn’t close that day.

    Day 7:
    When he tells you proudly that he just closed a big account he’s been working on for months, tell him, “It’s about TIME.”

    Day 8:
    When he tells you proudly that he just closed a 20k deal, ask him, “Why only 20?”

    Day 9:
    Ride along in the field with him (finally…you’ve been meaning to). Jump in on all of his calls and close deals for him, because you miss the thrill of the sale (and you’re really good at closing)!

    Day 10:
    The rep just closed a few big sales and is well on his way to meeting goal. Congratulate him and in the next breath, say, “Since you’re doing so well this month and the rest of the team is down, we’re going to up your goal. I know you can do it because you’re so good!”

    Salespeople are guilty of committing “sins” too. If you want to discover some of the more common and deadly ones, see a great article by Steve Martin in ManageSmarter.

    © 2006 The Loyalty Group. All Rights Reserved.

  • 3 Comments to “How to Lose a Salesrep in Ten Days”

    • Steve Roesler on March 19, 2007

      Hello, Phyllis,

      Well, this sure hits home. It should be turned into a pocket card or some such thing, maybe with a microchip sensor when one of them happens.

      My fave is a flip of #10: “When a sales rep sells the daylights out of a territory and makes really good money, by all means take it away and give it to a new rep.”

      The post is a must-read reminder for Sales Managers.

    • Phyllis Roteman on March 19, 2007

      Steve, thanks for your comments. I think your suggestion works for the 11th day, if the rep hasn’t already left by Day 10.

    • Alexander Kjerulf on March 21, 2007

      This is great – a very funny approach to some serious workplace issues.

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