Friday, January 20, 2012

FACTORY SALES REPS ARE THE KEYSTONE TO MODULAR HOME SUCCESS


Factory sales reps come in all shapes, sizes, knowledge and charisma but they all share one important trait; they are the key to both the modular factory and the new home builder’s success.

To better understand why they are so important you must first look at the non-modular home builder.  There are two basic types of site builders.  Tract builders build hundreds and even thousands of new homes every year.  They typically have a staff of designers, sales people, management and supervisory people that handle everything and keep as much as they can inside their organization.

The other group of site builders builds less than a hundred homes a year with many only building a handful.  The owners are sole proprietors, partnerships or LLC corps.  They also try to do just about everything themselves for their customers from design, to selling and marketing, advertising, scheduling labor and materials, job site supervision, accounting, customer relations and so many more things that you start to wonder how they can do all that with only 24 hours in a day. 

But the modular home builder has a partner is this game that can make the builder a “superman.”  It’s the factory sales rep.


When a factory hires a sales rep, they are entrusting them with the success or failure of both the factory and the builder network.  Seldom is this explained to the sales rep by anyone within the factory organization.  If the sales rep does what he or she is supposed to do, everyone wins, especially the builder.

So why is the sales rep so important?

They are the keystone that binds the factory with the builder.  A good sales rep insures that the builder’s customer’s wants and needs are met by the factory.  They are the ones that send information back and forth between the builder and the factory.

Sales reps help builders with design, costing, new product availability and much more.  They provide the builder with someone to talk to about running their business.  Leads generated by the factory website are usually given to the builder by the sales rep.  The rep is also the host or hostess when the builder’s customer visits the plant.  But one of the biggest things they do is to catch hell when something goes wrong with the home.  Late production run, delayed delivery, repairs, customer complaints and poor factory quality are just part of the everyday job for one of these heroes.

So how do most factories train new sales reps and continue to teach them about marketing, product improvements, new procedures and customer relations?  The factories rely on the Sales Manager.  If the Sales Rep can make or break a factory, the Sales Manager can make or break the Sales Rep. 

Factory owners need to not only look to their Sales Managers for more sales, they need to look to them for continuous improvement in the sales rep’s performance and this is only accomplished through training and constant attention to the sales reps needs.  Good luck with that!  


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