Project Management

Making Your Commitment to SFA Succeed

Tom Keenze

For better or for worse, sales force automation is a necessary part of customer relationship management. Making SFA successful for you is another story, one that requires not only involvement, but also commitment. What does that mean? As the wise man said, "The difference between 'involvement' and 'commitment' is like an eggs-and-bacon breakfast: The chicken was 'involved,' the pig was 'committed.'"

One aspect of the term SFA is "automation." This is a word that strikes fear into the hearts of many sales people. Few of them want anyone interfering with the way they work, especially if the methods they have developed over the years are producing good results. "If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it," is the maxim that comes to mind here.

Whether or not you believe your sales folks will benefit from a sales plan that calls for a number of specific steps to be followed--and this is what the automation part is all about--they will benefit from (and are probably already using) some kind of contact management tool. There's the other part of SFA--and the piece that is critical for CRM. How can we make it work for us?

There are a variety of methods available to the individual sales person to manage contacts. Everything from the Rolodex to index cards, Daytimers and even contact management software such as GoldMine. Any of these contect management methods can…


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