Creating a Sales Culture: It’s Not Just for the Sales Team

Team Pulling Up an ArrowWhen you read the phrase sales culture, what does that mean to you? When I ask folks I get responses like ’having our salespeople focused on selling our products or services,’ or ’successfully fulfilling a want or need of a customer,’ or ’meeting our sales goals on a regular basis.’ I’m thrilled when I hear responses like ‘having our salespeople focused on creating value’ or ‘we want our sales culture to be one of problem-solving for our customers’ or ‘we are a customer-centric culture.’ YEA! So why do we limit this thinking to just the sales team? Why don’t companies adopt the idea of creating a sales culture…one that is about creating value, being problem solvers, being customer-centric…why isn’t that the corporate culture?

Henry Ford said Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black. While I’m sure no one in your organization says that to a customer or someone within the organization, isn’t that the message they hear? Phrases like ‘as long as you can wait till Friday I can get you the information,’ ‘we’re understaffed and can’t get to your request,’ ‘you’ll have to ask someone else to handle it,’ ‘I forgot,’ ‘you have to fill out the form before we can respond to you’…and the list goes on. Imagine your company if every person and every department thought and acted like your sales team, was intent on creating value, problem-solving and being customer-focused whether those customers were internal or external to your organization. Productivity would soar, team dynamics would improve, customer complaints would diminish, revenues would climb and you’d hear laughter instead of complaints.

Creating a sales culture is about doing things right and finding solutions when there appear to be none. Mark Twain said it best: Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest. A sales team that concentrates on creating value for the customer is a winning sales team. An organization that applies these same principles in all departments is a winning organization. Implementing a sales culture throughout your organization is the first step toward creating an unbeatable company.


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