Industry Leaders Aren’t Afraid of Help

With most top lines feeling the pinch of a tough recession, many companies are trimming back their sales forces to “hibernate” while others are aggressively trying to win market share from their more dormant competitors. There are merits to each strategy, which could be the subject of another post. In this post we consider the way that asking for help is not a sign of weakness but a sign of strength for many industry-leading companies.

Consider, for instance, that almost every one of the Fortune 100 companies regularly employs outside consultants for a variety of purposes – be it strategic consulting, sales help, operations consulting, outsourcing, or IT. Knowing where core competencies lie and asking for help beyond those is one of the most prudent that companies focused on growth can do: trying to bring in-house areas that are not at least peripheral to core competencies can be an expensive waste of time, and CEOs, COOs, CFOs, CTOs, and CIOs of the country’s most successful companies realize this.

In few areas is help so frequently needed but so infrequently called, however, than in sales. After all, selling a product requires intimate product knowledge, loyalty, and team spirit than can only be fostered by keeping salespeople in-house, right? While for some products this is true, it is the exception rather than the rule. Sales experts have capabilities as consultants and as outsourced salespeople that can revive sagging sales numbers or open up new markets that seem out of reach. So asking for help in the sales department is a sign of strength and a willingness to improve, rather than a sign of weakness.

Sales help can take a variety of forms. As mentioned, sales experts in all kinds of industries are willing to help build an overall sales program on a consultative basis – and companies like Acquirent offer that expertise. Another service that many medium-sized companies find useful is outsourced recruiting and screening, ensuring a steady of flow of seasoned and enthusiastic salespeople with the attitude and skills that will really make a difference to the top line. And other companies still prefer to outsource all of their sales on a contract basis so that they can focus better on their core competencies – developing new products, improving operations – rather than on recruiting, hiring, administering, and motivating a full-time in-house sales force. For any sales problem – or even just a minor headache that could be improved with the help of knowledgeable sales experts – help is more readily available than most companies who need it would imagine, and it is easily affordable if not downright good business sense in the long run.

Smart leaders know that asking for help is a sign of strength and not of weakness. Help with peripheral functions like sales allow them to focus on improving their companies’ structure and products: the essence of what it means to be focused on innovation and relevancy.

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