In May I discussed a great way to give back to the representative profession. When a manufacturer whose products don’t fit your line card contacts you, take a few minutes to let them know your company is not a fit and encourage them to continue their search for a representative who would be great for their products. If you don’t, some other representative loses when they hire a direct salesperson.
This message struck a chord with representatives — here is some of their feedback from social media:
This is an excellent point, and I have to admit that I am about 50/50 regarding responses, but will turn that into 100 percent responses as of today!
— Tim Carey, President, Kirk Sales, Inc.
Charley — you could not be more right on with your comments. We owe at least that to our profession and to the Companies who pay to use this service.
— Mark Conley, President/CEO, O’Donnell Associates North, Inc.
I should practice what I preach. I always return my phone calls or e-mails, so I should do the same when a prospective principal is reaching out. I don’t like it when I leave a message and don’t get a reply. Thank you, Charles, for explaining how the prospective manufacturer was not getting a reply. I could understand how frustrated she or he was, and this is not a good reflection on the sales representatives’ profession. I will respond to all manufacturers that reach out in the future.
— Lisa Wilson, Owner, L.S. Wilson & Associates, Inc.
I always respond and will refer another rep who may be interested.
— John Aiello, Owner, PSE Associates, LLC
Guilty as charged. There seems to be a definite increase in searching for outsourced sales. I have just responded to a company, late, but responded.
— Thomas Leslie, Thomas M Leslie & Associates, LLC
In the field of material handling there have not been many inquiries. I have not responded to all of them since they don’t fit my business profile. I will, in the future, contact even those who do not fit my line card and express my support for what they are doing. We are PROFESSIONALS and this is one way to show that.
— George Murphy, President at G. Murphy Sales, LLC
To cultivate and preserve a healthy pool of principals for all of us, each encounter principals have with a manufacturers’ representative must reinforce our professionalism. Call them back or e-mail them back and you elevate the professionalism of our entire industry.