Aug 1, 2016 | OPERATIONS

Business Operations

Death of a Salesman isn’t just a famous tragedy by Arthur Miller. It seems to be a sign of the times! Human contact is slowly being replaced by e-mails, e-blasts and e-carts. Record store salesman – gone; now you download one song at a time. Video store clerk – gone; replaced by streaming. Photo developing – gone; print at home. And it’s not just products… many services have been replaced. Travel agents – gone. Directory assistance – gone. Newspapers – not gone but on their way out. – The death of a salesman has hit the engine parts aftermarket hard. Not long ago our industry was serviced by manufacture reps who showed us new products, offered marketing assistance, and handled service issues. Today, most suppliers have cut that expense so they can lower their selling price. – The death of the salesman is a natural progression in a mature industry that has transitioned from a “service” industry to a “commodity” supplier. So, here’s the tip: appreciate the few salesmen who are left. Answer their phone calls and listen to their story. But most importantly, ask them to provide help to your business, after all, that’s why they’re there . And, if you appreciate personal contact like we do, it might benefit your own business to get out of the shop at least once a week to visit your own customers and prospects.

Rich Stevens
Richard’s Automotive Machine
Kansas City, MO
August, 2016