Sales People are Not Bill Collectors
Subject: Selling, Account Payables, Collecting Bills, Sales Training
Salespeople are Not Bill Collectors
The other day I’m in a meeting with my staff where we were going over next year’s sales projections and profit margins on our product sales. As the CEO of a company, my job is to insure that sales are coming in from one side and that are costs for manufacturing are down from the other side. In the middle of selling and cost control lies this specter called, Accounts Receivables. For those not familiar with the term, it simply means bills (money owed) that have not been paid to the company.
During this staff meeting, one of my finance personnel began to mention how she needed help from the sales people in collecting these outstanding revenues owed to the company. It was at that moment that I got very upright in my chair and ask for a clarification.
The finance person, realizing my reaction, quickly clarified that she only needed the salespeople to help her collect on bills that were more than 90 days past due. The exchange went along this line:
At this point I knew she was not skirting my direct question. So I made the following comments which was also part of my overall sales philosophy.
I could tell by here body language and demeanor that she was unsure of what to say next. I went on to clarify the importance of maintaining a separation of church and state when it came to sales and accounting.
So What Can be Done?
In this case, there are several approaches to this dilemma. I mean, bills have to be collected if future sales are to occur. So here were my suggestions to the staff:
Like in any relationship, the introduction of money into a conversation can be very damaging if not managed well. There is an understanding between the client and the salesperson that they are there to negotiate product and price, not payment…that’s an accounting issue.
Please share this with a colleague or friend who may need some words of inspiration.
Victor Antonio G. is an author and motivational speaker.
Copyright © 2005 by Victor Antonio G. All rights reserved. This article MAY be reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, as long as the author’s name, website and email address are included as part of the article’s body. All inquiries, including information on electronic licensing, should be directed to Victor Antonio G.
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