Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members

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What should be key strategies and tactics for sales professionals during Covid-19 crisis?

Any crisis is an unprecedented event that disrupts the normal functioning of an organisation. That’s a period where the entire business needs to revamp itself, develop key priorities, make course corrections, assess its financial situation and strengthen its communication.

The key strategies for sales professionals in this period are the follows:

  • Actively communicate and inform the affected stakeholders (customers, dealer partners, employees/network teams, suppliers, etc.) of the situation at hand
  • Continuously engage and involve the network teams in activities for business continuity
  • Re-build confidence: safe and sanitization measures undertaken at different touchpoints
  • Prepare alternative, accessible business solutions that are aligned with the changing customer behaviour. In case of COVID-19, Volkswagen digitalised its sales and service platform, by enabling online bookings of Volkswagen products
  • Build realistic campaigns that motivate the sales team for further action
  • Adapt to the new normal

What are the top technologies that are disrupting your role?

In today’s scenario, technology has definitely been a boon as economies across geographies are relying on digital platforms for business communication. While there are newer innovations every day, the top technologies that have penetrated in our business are:

  • Virtual/remotely accessible markets (digital retail): enabling virtual negotiation among the buyer and seller, through a secured transaction/medium
  • Voice search/ recognition
  • Chat bots that act as a support to our contact centre team
  • Artificial intelligence

What are the top 5 sales skills that you would want to enhance to be future ready?

Sales and marketing go hand in hand, regardless of the type of business, it’s a key driver for growth and development. Sales representatives are the ones that face the customer, few skills they must attain in the future are:

  • Active listening and understanding of the customer’s requirements
  • High levels of emotional quotient
  • Ability to engage with the customer and make their experience customized or personalised
  • Entrepreneurial spirit
  • Strong communication skills

Give us 5 Bold Predictions for a Post Covid World that will Impact the Sales Profession Drastically.

The ongoing Covid19 outbreak has impacted the economy world over and pushed us to innovate and collaborate towards the new reality. The resilience of individuals and corporates will prevail in the post Covid World. The shifts sales professionals will witness are:

  • Higher priority on personal hygiene, safety and sanitization
  • Reduced spending on premium/luxury goods. Focus on essentials and financially prudent alternatives
  • Shift in purchase channels: customers will prefer online sales/digital tools in most categories with the accessibility of experiencing the product at the comfort of their homes.
  • Virtual/ remote engagement with customers that are transparent, to the point and high on EQ
  • Reduced foot falls at the sales outlets

The views are those of Steffen Knepp, Director, Volkswagen Passenger Cars India

 

 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members

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