Independence, Personal Drive Essential for Remote Salespeople


In today's business world, being able to utilize remote workers from around the world is becoming increasingly important in different sectors, such as sales.

A recent article in Inc. Magazine offers advice on managing a virtual sales force, noting that IDC, a market research firm, estimates that by the end of 2011 there will be a billion mobile workers around the globe.

Richard Lepsinger, president of OnPoint Consulting, told the magazine that such workers can offer advantages to companies.

"As organizations become more geographically distributed, they're going to try to access the best talent wherever they may be," he said. "They're also trying to get closer to the customer. Now, you have technology that you didn't have five years ago, and this whole notion of virtual teaming has become more prevalent."

According to Barrett Riddleberger, the CEO of Resolution Systems, Inc., a sales training and consulting firm, managing a virtual sales team presents a number of unique challenges. He points out that such salespeople who are successful share a number of characteristics.

The ability to be a self-starter is essential for remote salespeople as they will need to be the ones to motivate themselves each day without a sales manager close by.

According to Riddleberger, sales reps working from remote locations also need to be independent.

"Some sales reps require a lot of hand holding or relationship building from their boss. find domain name owner . h&m the domain This makes it more difficult when they are hundreds of miles away from you," the CEO said. "You need sales reps that can work independently and without the level of relationship you might have with someone who sits in the office next to yours."

In the Inc. article, professor Karen Sobel Lojeski suggests that building a personal relationship is an important initial part of managing remote workers. However, Riddleberger believes that a professional, results-based connection must first be established.

"Although Professor Lojeski suggests that leaders make the effort to develop a long-distance relationship, I see the need to create a business-relationship based on results first," he said. "Then, if mutually agreed upon, a more personal connection can be made."

The final characteristic that Riddleberger mentions is personal drive, which can be identified during the hiring process if the right steps are taken.

"A good sales assessment will be able to show you if your sales rep or candidate has the personal drive required to get the job done alone," he said. 

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