You’re the waitstaff; they’re the patrons. These five key functions of sales staff can help you understand how to sell any dish (aka your product.)

If you’ve ever read an online restaurant review, you’ve probably seen one-star reviews where the emphasis was on poor waitstaff. At a restaurant, even when the food is poor, it’s not usually the chef that gets hit with criticism, it’s the waitstaff.

Why? Because the waitstaff is on the front line. They’re the defenders of the kitchen, and the restaurant. They are who the customers talk to directly. A poor experience with waitstaff can ruin a meal, even if the meal is delicious.

And you can ruin a sale, even if the product is amazing.

A sales team acts as the face, or voice, of a company. They are on the front lines with customers, just like a waiter in a restaurant, or a cashier in a retail store. When it comes down to it, a sales team plays the most pivotal role in engaging customers to purchase your company’s product or service.

That’s why they call it sales.

And since you are one of the key factors of success to your business, gaining fresh insight into the functions of your sales team will keep your staff polished – reflecting positively on you.

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lead-managerLet us help you simplify your sales process.  Sign up for a 30-day FREE trial of our lead management software and turn more leads into customers with less work!

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The Key Functions of Sales Staff

1. Evangelizing: Have you ever eaten at a restaurant and asked the waitstaff about their favorite dish on the menu? If you do this often, then you know some will come back with an enthusiastic review of their favorite dish. They love it so much you can’t help but order it. Other times, you get someone who says, “uh, the mozzarella sticks?” or even worse, “uh, I like it all?”

Understand the product (or service) you’re selling. Use the product you’re selling. QA the product you’re selling. Come up with a list of likes and dislikes. The function of a sales staff doesn’t stop at reading a script; you need to evangelize the product as if it’s your own.

2. Networking:  This isn’t news to you. Sales take place in and outside of the office. Planting the seeds at networking events and conferences is one strategy that all successful salespeople use. If the extent of your sales effort is waiting for calls to come in, or respond to a cold email or phone call, think about better ways to spend your time. And when you start collecting leads, use sales automation software like Blitz to help you track and follow up with them.

3. Teamwork: Absorb what you can about other departments, not just sales. This concept, married with open communication amongst your coworkers, will make you a hit at the company. You can only become better at selling a product, by knowing the team that develops it, and who can lend particular insights you won’t know on your own.  Teamwork also applies to working well with business partners and clients.

4. Closing Sales: Sales coach Patricia Fripp says, “You don’t close a sale; you open a relationship.” Since closing sales is arguably your number one function in sales, a significant amount of time is spent researching leads. Prioritize this by understanding the type of customer you are dealing with and catering to their needs.

The same goes for knowing your competition, too. Let’s say you are trying to close a deal with a customer, but they are shopping around for the same product at another business. Tactfully illustrate points that show the competition can’t even come close to your product.

5. Administration: Making sales is more fun than documenting them, writing contracts, and filing them. While most administrative duties can be tedious, these are one the most important functions of sales staff. All administrative tasks (such as writing emails, planning meetings, and keeping an account of everyone’s work), will maintain structure in the workplace.

While you’re working on the other functions of sales staff, let Blitz automate many of your administrative duties for you.

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lead-managerLet us help you simplify your sales process.  Sign up for a 30-day FREE trial of our lead management software and turn more leads into customers with less work!

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What roles do the sales staff play in your company? Share some of your experiences in the comments section below.