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From the Desk of Jack Healy, MassMEP Lean Expert

Sales and Marketing: Manufacturing’s Biggest Deficit

By: Jack Healy, Director of Operations

Ask any manufacturer on how they would rate their respective manufacturing operations, on a scale of 1 -10, with the number one being very bad, and ten being very good?   Most responses that we have experienced to this question have been in the 7 to 9 range and indicates how these manufacturers perceive their manufacturing capabilities.

Similarly ask the same group of manufacturers (or yourself) on how they would rate their respective sales and marketing organizations, using this same evaluation scale of 1 to 10.  And responses to this question usually draw poorer evaluations - in the 3 to 5 range.

Why does such difference exists between the manufacturing and sales capabilities  when so many manufacturers are in continued need of sales ? 

Over 90% of Massachusetts manufacturing enterprises are establishments of less than 100 people.  In such a small and busy milieu it is always a challenge to deal with the differences between what is urgent and what is important.  It is a given that production problems are always urgent and as such demand immediate attention and time to correct.   The opportunity for development of sales, while important is never urgent, until it is too late.  Traditionally manufacturers tend to spend their time dealing with urgent matters because if they don’t, there may well be no company left.  We all feel that after we have dealt with what is urgent, we can then turn our attention to what is important.  But this seldom happens as there is usually very little time left, as urgent issues in manufacturing often expand in numbers and in detail so as to fill most of the available time.

The only way to address the inherent sales and marketing attention deficit is to acknowledge their real importance and to allocate a specific amount of senior management time to this activity.  Urgent problems can be delegated or dealt with in principle rather than in detail.  Manufacturers need to have a clear mind with respect that there is a time for problem solving and there has to be a time for seeking new sales opportunities.   Doing what seems to be the most urgent at the moment is the usual rationale for inaction as a succession of successfully  solved production problems do not add up to an opportunity.

There is a truism in that all manufacturers are different.  Each company has different people, with different skills, with different resources, and equipment etc.   This usually means that one formula or one size fits all solutions stops most manufactures from exploring a way forward to establish an implementation plan to address this sales management deficit, which is why the MassMEP has organized a full day workshop to help owners, managers or senior executives,  who no longer wish to have low rated sales or marketing organizations , plan for their  future growth needs as described on the following registration form.

Impact your top line: Develop the fundamentals of your sales and marketing process

Are you prepared for top-line growth? 
Only a fraction of American manufacturers measure up to the world-class strategies that describe what it will take to survive and grow over the coming years and become a Next Generation Manufacturer.  One of those key strategies is Growth and Innovation. MassMEP offers you a resource to address your Growth and Innovation needs and impact your top-line growth—Massachusetts Growth and Innovation Network

Join us on May 14, 2010 and learn how the Massachusetts Growth and Innovation Network helps you impact your Top Line. 

 Massachusetts Growth and Innovation Network Presentation:

You will be introduced to the tools and knowledge you need to achieve breakthrough levels of growth for your manufacturing company.  You will learn how to:

· Create Basic Foundations for your Sales and Marketing Strategy

· Better understand your clients

· Articulate the value of your product and your customer

· Determine if you have the right product and/or services

· Target the right markets

· Develop a structure that enables your business to grow

· Innovation impacts your company and be introduced to the MassMEP Growth Strategy Development Program

Date and Time:
Friday, May 14, 2010
7:30 am Registration
8:00 - 11:30 am interactive workshop

Registration:
Registration Fee: $29
Register online at www.massmep.org
Contact - Kathie Mahoney at 508-831-7020 or
kathiem@massmep.org

Location:
Hilton Garden Inn
35 Major Taylor Boulevard
Worcester, MA

Who Should Attend:
Company decision makers
Business owners
Sales and Marketing Managers

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