Imagine being on a sailing ship in a storm. Or underwater and a of your diver has a serious problem. Alternatively: Your department or even the whole company threatens to fall into economic slump. And now ask yourself: who is more important? The sales representative you have always been able to rely on? Or the young, wild and hungry hotspurs?
Crisis situations are moments of scarcity. It’s about everything, about survival. In most cases, the situation is confusing and time, the time to act and react, remains limited. Also, there is often a lack of resources. It is important to make clear decisions. In the crisis, this requires the ability to recognize what really matters. If you look at sales and distribution, you realize very quickly that it depends on a stable base, especially when it comes to the loyalty of your high performing salespeople.
Being in a crisis, do you really want to explain to your financing partners that the high performing salespeople will give you notice? And what effects does this have on the working atmosphere and customer loyalty?
You can certainly imagine the raised eyebrows of the shareholder circle, the financial investor or the bank, if you try to explain to them that their most reliable racehorses have jumped you. Associated customers often go with these employees – and they always do so to the competition.
Crisis situations are moments of concerns and anxiety. When it comes down to the business and the bones, we feel stress and fears can overpower us. Many of us will never or rarely have experienced such a situation, we lack the experience of having survived the situation. Not surprising, the question is raised, whether the binding of the young, hungry savages is not more important than the binding of the experienced veteran seller. Please consider: In most cases, the veteran forces own a high degree of customer loyalty. In addition, their loyalty to the employer is often high to very high. The key question is: Should you focus on customer retention or customer acquisition?
Here I have a clear opinion. There can almost always be just one top selling target in the crisis. I strongly recommend: Customer loyalty comes before customer acquisition. It is far more complicated to win new customers than to secure existing customers. In addition: Lost customers do not come back so quickly. This leads to an important principle.
Binding of those sellers with the high customer loyalty has priority.
In the crisis, dilemmas and double binds are to be avoided and the decision as to whether new customers or existing customers are more important is a clear predicament. And we really doesn´t need double binds in a crisis, because it is here to tackle bravely.
Therefore, for me, to cover the base, as a guarantor of stability and trust, must be given primacy.
I look forward to your contribution and the discussion with you.
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