In his book “The Prince”Machiavelli states that leaders “must assume that all men are wicked and will act wickedly whenever they have the chance to do so.” To tell you the truth, I have not found this to be the case. In fact I have normally found the exact opposite to be the case. In most of the organizations that I have been in, I have found the team members to be ready and willing to do the correct and proper activities when they are given the chance.
The key here is to enable the team to do the right things. Make sure your sales team has the product training and competitive knowledge to successfully compete in the marketplace. If they don’t know what their product can do or what their competition is capable of, then the chance of their misstating your product or corporate capabilities increases. They will take some of the blame for not having the information, but you should take some of the blame for not making sure it was provided.
The sales team has the unenviable job of trying to please two masters; the customer who buys their product, and the management of the team that supplies the product. The sales team wants to tell the customer the truth and set expectations appropriately (as well as get the order) so that the customer will not have issues regarding the product performance and the perceived value it brings. The sales team also wants to meet the goals and expectations of their management in order to receive their rewards and maintain their positions.
In business and sales there will always be issues. By providing the right information, capabilities and incentives to the business and sales team, they will be enabled to do those activities that they need to do right, and to continue to prove Machiavelli wrong