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Think Beyond Outside Sales

Think Beyond Outside Sales

December 5, 2016

Has your company embraced team selling? If I asked myself this question 20 years ago when I was managing an industrial sales team, I would have said yes. But after years of study and experience, I know that the answer should have been no.

More than ever, distributors need to think beyond their outside sales teams. Everyone in your company touches the customer – from sales and marketing to customer service, inside sales and technical service. In fact, some of them probably talk to the customer more than an outside salesperson does. So how are you leveraging their knowledge?

Consider all the customer-facing touch points you have within your company and how each of your departments communicate. It may be helpful to list these on a whiteboard or paper to visualize how your organization works together. Now, where can you improve? A CRM system is a great way to document and leverage data across departments in one place, knocking down the siloes that typically exist.

The primary message in my recent book, published by MDM, is that getting ROI from CRM is about sales process, not the technology. And a big part of that is using every part of your organization to uncover and convert more sales opportunities. That is the key to gaining a competitive edge in the market. It’s not necessarily going to be easy. As with anything, this requires a culture shift. But the payoff can be huge. A commitment to team selling can result in more sales to existing customers through upselling and cross-selling.

I will be speaking about this at Sales GPS 2017, March 1-2, 2017, in Austin, TX. Join me there to learn more about the changing role of field sales in distribution.

And I provide an in-depth look at team selling in my new book, ROI from CRM: It’s About Sales Process, Not Just Technology, available from MDM. Learn more.

Learn more about the value of team selling in this video:

Brian Gardner is author of ROI from CRM and founder of SalesProcess360, which is focused on helping industrial sales organizations think differently about sales process and get ROI from CRM. Learn more about SalesProcess360 at, and contact Gardner at

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