There are many things that are being done right in this organization from your excellence coverage of current accounts to your relative domination of high quality products but as you have found there are many reasons why Wenworth Industrial Cleaning Supplies has seen a decrease in cash flow and an increase in competitor take over. The number one and number two reason being the ineffective use of the salesforce and the lack of communication (including incentives) between the salesforce and management (its distributors and area, territory, regional managers). The three reason why sales have slowed or even decreased is the high cost of sales itself.
By changing the salesforces job description to a more creative approatiate and not a “checking the boxes” method would allow for newly placed uncapped incentive programs to be even more effective which in turn would increase new sales and increase current account profitablity. Area managers roll should be changed to directly managing the salesforce instead of wasting time on cold calling which has been expressed by your area manager as an uneffective method to gain new business. I do see room for area managers to possibly still be active in calling on businesses which have shown a decrease in WICS purchases. Communication can be improved by making the salesforce feel comfortable going to managers of any level and know that they are being listened to. To fix this could be as simple as having more conference calls or having more general meetings or maybe even a more technologically based solution. These two changes will also make the managers more accountable for their salesforce which in turn would foster a more personal relationship with the salesforce.
To reduce sales costs will be the hardest of all since this will not be an over night success sotry, but since sales costs are about 45 percent there has be a reduction in sales demonstrations, price of the “average” or the cash cow products, and