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Recollective Sales Amnesia

Corporate amnesia is a topic I see with a burgeoning following so far this year.

One comment I was particularly struck by was from a Derbyshire seamstress. She noted that on her clothing production line, it took way longer to unpick the mistakes of trying something new to you, than for the company to get someone adept already to share how it’s done beforehand.

Know-how slips through the cracks of every organisation.

Technology has sought to resolve this. In our Sales realm at least, there’s been no solution. Whatever a new generation of once 2.0, latterly social vendors pretend.

The overwhelming stumbling block is the expectation in the technology itself. Put a place for winners to tap in their wonderfully world-beating experiences and all will be resolved.

Even worse, management then expect all colleagues to read up and act upon the proven wisdom of their peers.

Tech alone goes nowhere.

When confronted with such conundrum myself, lengthy development of software concluded no matter of effortless clickbait wizardy could affect everyone to sup.

A pivotal, human, presence was needed. Embedded, respected. A heartbeat of the sales efforts.

Most teams I encounter have some kind of 2 i/c. A trusted lieutenant, straight line only to the boss, no direct reports of their own. Yet clearly treated as important, on par with the top level of sales managers.

In the 90s, they tended to be called Sales Ops Managers. Training and process to the fore. Yet as the Millennium breezed by, they became ever more techy, chasing after crm compliance and reports and veering worryingly towards micro-management. Today, the few I’ve met recently seem to have gone deeper across Marketing. Liaising with ‘partners’, getting involved in the detail of comm plan incentives and ‘investigating mobile’. Oh-oh.

So if it is bad for corporate amnesia to strike, what’s the antidote? Step forward Chief Memory Officer. Bordering parody perhaps. I remember when any latest buzzword was swiftly popped on a business card to preface the label ‘executive’, ‘manager’ and then in-between the capital C and O. Anyway, around as a concept since at least 2000, one definition reads;

the person in charge of maintaining an organisation’s collective knowledge, experience and history

That’s quite some scope. Here’s some context;

chiefmemoryofficercontext

Tempted to cite the flood of qualified psychologists becoming on-call performance coaches?

Sales Memory Manager. I can sense the bandwagonners.

Capture and spread of ‘best-practice’ is a work shaft from which little emerges into daylight. Even before discussing how you recognise what is worthy of capture or how you monitor whether what’s spread gets deployed with results.

Beyond flippancy, this is a vital role. But shockingly overlooked in our world.

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Category: sales knowledge management

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