Management Needs Answers to plan
Assignment, delegation, and responsibility are created as plans are made. As the plan progresses, “questions will be asked.” These should be answerable if a sound control method has been built into the program:
1. Who are the profitable customers, where are they? If this is known, then how unprofitable are the losers, and why?
2. Which kinds of jobs are the profitable ones – by process, customer type, purpose? Which are the unprofitable and why?
3. How are our prices as compared with our competitors? What kinds of jobs have we been low bidders on, what kinds have we lost?
4. How many of our customers are in declining industries? How are sales to “old reliable” holding up? Are there any likely newcomers we ought to see more of?
5. How well are our salesmen covering the line? Are any of them becoming product specialists at our expense? Are they calling on all customers?
6. our salesmen seeing the right people when they call? Who are the right people? Do we have this information on record?
7. Have we any group of customers who appear to give us only their low-profit business? Can we do anything about this?
8. Are our customers classified as to (a) importance to us (b) potential volume (c) profitability? Are we playing the winners in salesmen’s call frequencies?
9. Are we providing any services that our customers particularly like? Are we providing any that are unnecessary, costly but not desirable?
10. How effective is our advertising and public relations program? What kind of corporate image do we have? What kinds of work does the public associate us with?
11. How do salesmen rank as to profitability of business brought in? Have we any unprofitable salesmen? Let’s see what our most profitable man is selling, and to whom.
12. How can we save salesmen’s time? What kinds of detail can we relieve them of, profitably? What kinds of selling can be done by phone or mail?