Neue Unternehmenskultur

Make full use of your strength in sales //

Today more than ever before, companies’ success depends on how well they pool their strengths and focus on markets and clients. There are a number of challenges that companies can no longer avoid: more demanding customers, increasingly complex products and solutions, and globalized markets, to name just a few.

It is therefore all the more important for managers to find the right strategic, organizational, and personnel solutions to help them face these challenges.

  • How do we identify the changes that need to be made and design an outstanding strategy for market cultivation and client care?

  • How can we create strong sales units that optimize direct client contact locally, regionally, and throughout the organization?

  • How can we effectively influence the conduct and clout of our entire sales team from headquarters?

Most companies generally already have polished ideas for new approaches on hand – it’s implementing them that tends to cause problems. In sales, changes must be made while operations continue, and new concepts must be immediately comprehensible and applicable. The more decisively the management team acts, the better this works.

With our experience spanning multiple industries and our in-depth understanding of the issues, we create the perfect conditions to allow our clients to attain the desired behaviors and achieve rapid success on the market.

Ben Heigert

“Nearly every company harbors undiscovered potential for sales that can be leveraged with resolute management.”

Ben Heigert

Sales management as a major factor for success //

For years, German and American bestseller lists on the topic of sales have been full of this theory: If you want to increase your sales success, the focus should always be on the individual salesperson and his or her talent for selling. The manager’s duty is to develop these individual salespeople into expert sales personalities who know how to bring the products to the customers.

In order to apply this theory to the entire sales force, companies often subject salespeople to cookie cutter-style training courses that do not meet their individual needs. And when these courses do not produce the desired results, the ‘system’ gets called into question: Companies attempt to perfect commission models and incentive systems in order to influence the conduct of client-facing employees. It is undeniable that these programs do have some influence on behavior, but that influence tends to be much less than many people assume.

Sales Community

Our experience: Top-notch sales performance and increased success on the market depends strongly on the sales leader. This has been equally demonstrated in the highly complex B2B field, in consumer companies structured in branches, and in the use of intelligent multi-channel strategies.

In our broad sales study, we determined the following:

  • There is an energetic manager at the head of all successful sales units who serves as a role model and demonstrates that he or she can succeed, even in difficult situations or crises.

  • This manager shows his or her team the way and, by focusing on just a few (!) areas, provides the necessary strategic orientation, never doing things simply for the sake of doing them.

  • At the same time, this manager stays close to the sales teams, spreads positive upheaval, and keeps the team in motion informally and directly – not with numbers and systems.

  • With their approach to management, sales leaders provide obvious team spirit and a will to win. Everyone gets involved and fights for the team – the strength of the individual and the strength of the team cross-fertilize one another.

  • There is a noticeably positive mood within the team, and team members always enjoy their work. However, this is never the result of a comfortable, feel-good atmosphere; it has more to do with a focus on performance and jointly achieved successes.

  • And finally: There’s no such thing as ‘more of the same’ in successful sales units – what they do have is a healthy dose of courage and creativity. The team develops and tests new approaches.

What implications does this have for day-to-day business in sales? //

Essentially, a sales leader and his or her team are responsible for creating a work environment teeming with positive energy, ambition, and bravery. But how do the protagonists reach that point? How can they influence their work environment? In our experience, there is no one ‘best’ way.

Central points of reference and guiding questions that emerged in our sales study include the following:

The factor that has the most influence on the work environment of a sales unit is its sales leader. As role models, sales leaders must act decisively. They must be a bastion of strength in turbulent times. Moreover, they should adopt a direct, informal management style – staying in close contact with their people, seeking out contact, and exerting personal influence. Bean counters who govern from behind their desks have no business here.

  • How strong are these characteristics in your sales leaders? Are these characteristics encouraged and taken into account in new hires?

In addition to these fundamental character traits, sales leaders primarily need to have a clear master plan for themselves and their unit: Where do we stand as a team? Where are we headed? How do we get there?

  • Is a plan like this in place for your most important sales units? Is it tied to the company’s strategies? Do people implement it in their day-to-day business?

In order to truly change the work environment in their teams, however, sales leaders will need more than just an excellent plan. Most importantly, they must be able to influence the conduct and collective fitness of their teams – the way they cooperate, and the level of passion that team members bring to their work.

  • What level of influence do your sales leaders have on day-to-day conduct within their teams? Do the team members know what is expected of them?

Learn more about our approach in our example project

Contact //


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© BBH GmbH // Strategy & Innovation