Interdepartmental Collaboration: Is a Siloed Sales Model Still the Optimal Sales Model?
For the last hundred years, companies have relied on one strategy in order to sell their products.
The company’s sales departments are not integrated with the other parts of their business.
Sales departments are often left to themselves, competing with each other internally. They don’t work closely enough with marketing or customer service.
Companies keep this sales model because it’s been successful in the past.
I’ve been in sales for over a decade and have seen the traditional siloed approach, which has fueled many multi-billion-dollar companies. But now I see an industry shift happening.
Working in a more collaborative environment has become popular among new generation of salespeople.
It would be good for the company if sales were integrated into all aspects of it rather than just being a separate entity.
I’ll explain 3 reasons why an interdepartmental collaboration model is taking over.
- The data advantage
- There is a lot of change in the cultural landscape.
- Healthier competition
Interdepartmental Collaboration and the Advantage of Data
It’s been shown that data collected from the sales department can be used across various teams to improve performance and make decisions more intelligently.
The data from how people interacted with the company was useful for marketing departments. They could use it to inform their PR strategy, as well as design landing pages and run ads.
According to a study, when sales teams had access to the intelligence and data of other company departments, they performed better.
It’s more than just sales teams. Companies saw that data collected by other departments could be used to improve the company as a whole, so they integrated sales models.
Success with this approach paved the way for its popularity among startups.
One of the most important components to a successful team is data-driven decision-making.
Interdepartmental Collaboration and the Shift of Cultural Landscape
The world has changed a lot over the last twenty years, and simply put people want interdepartmental collaboration. The more integrated your sales model is, the more likely it will be that you have employees who are collaborative rather than competitive.
As society changes, so will the collective consciousness.
Younger salespeople like working in collaborative environments. They want to work across departments, and they prefer open communication.
Millennials are drawn to things like open floor plans because they crave authenticity. Companies run by this generation have the same goal.
More open cultures have a better chance of success. People who are dishonest and manipulative thrive in an environment where they can do things without being seen or heard.
A siloed sales model is a terrible way to go about hiring people. It prevents communication and it goes against what your talent wants.
Many companies are focused on team building, especially during the hiring process.
Competition and Interdepartmental Collaboration
One of the most common arguments against integrated sales teams is that they take away from the competition.
Salespeople are first motivated by money and the goal to make as much as they can. They’re also competitive, so a company’s sales process should encourage competition.
I think competition is important for increasing sales, but a collaborative environment can also be just as successful. When workers are allowed to collaborate with each other and different departments, the bottom line goes up.
It also encourages competition, since there is more transparency. It cuts down on backstabbing and dirty politics.
Enhancing Communication With Customers with Interdepartmental Collaboration
In the end, what matters most for any given company is how well they can satisfy their customers.
When teams don’t communicate with each other, there are bottlenecks and unaddressed customer pain points.
If you’re building a company, look at the companies that are most successful in your space and design your processes to mirror theirs.
The key is to understand that collaboration can be a good thing. I’ve seen it happen at ShipChain, and what makes these companies unique are their collaborative environments.
The future of sales may be different than it is now.
But now, more than ever before, integration is the key to success. It’s proven that if you want transparency and collaboration in your workplace environment then it’s critical for people from different backgrounds to be part of the team.
What are your thoughts on collaboration? Does your teamwork with other divisions in the company or do you find that this has been a problem for you so far? Share them below.
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