This is the sixth in a series of posts on executing a global sales framework. Successful implementation of a global sales management framework requires respect, local autonomy, communications, and leadership.
Successful global sales organizations respect the local cultures in which they operate. Sales leaders in the corporate home office recognize the different cultures, values and traditions of the local offices. They also recognize that embracing those differences can mean the difference between success and failure.
Similarly, the local sales management teams respect the corporate culture in which they must work. They embrace the vision and values defined by the corporate home office. This mutual respect goes a long way toward building the trust necessary for successful relationships.
As information moves rapidly throughout the local markets and across the globe, local sales managers need autonomy to make immediate decisions. Based on the knowledge, skills, and trust the company has developed within its sales teams, local autonomy enables them to respond quickly to customer requirements and fluid situations. When developing new markets, an experienced, autonomous local team can also more successfully navigate pitfalls found where the infrastructure has gaps or is non-existent. Without local autonomy, the pace of business slows dramatically and opportunities go to nimbler competitors.
Regular, clear, open two-way communication reinforces sense of belonging to a team. Remote sales teams can lose touch with the company and lose the camaraderie necessary for buy-in to the overall company vision and goals. Without this sense of team, sales reps perform at a lower level or at odds with the company’s goals.
Communications gives all parties the opportunity to solicit input and provide feedback. It enables review and guidance when sales teams are dealing with challenging opportunities. Finally, open communications create a pathway for the corporate home office to get involved in regional or local decision making, if needed.
Finally, a successful global sales management framework requires strong leadership at both the corporate and local levels.
Strong corporate leaders define and enforce the corporate culture. They clarify what actions are acceptable to maintain the corporate vision and values and what actions are not. Strong corporate leaders also define the corporate sales strategy, set the corporate goals and expectations, and provide the tools local sales teams need to run their businesses. Successful corporate leaders know how and when to provide local management with support and coaching. They also know when to leave local teams alone to deliver their own results.
Strong local leadership is equally important. Local management teams must lead their sales representatives to develop effective sales strategies, execute those strategies, and deliver on their commitments. Finally, local leaders must be strong enough to secure resources from the corporate home office needed to execute their strategies such as headcount, capital investment, or technical support.
Wallace Management Group helps companies put in place the tools they need to succeed globally.