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We’ve all heard the expression “inspect what you expect” and granted there is great power, insight and learning to be had by monitoring your processes through thorough reporting. However, when is the last time you inspected the data from which those reports are compiled?
The power of inspection lies primarily on the focus those actions will receive because everyone knows they are being monitored. This very knowledge however can backfire when your basing the reports on false data. For example, we know there is a direct correlation between closing percentages and response times. There is also not a manager worth their salt that does not keep a keen eye on this metric. When was the last time you took the extra step and looked at the quality of those responses? Better yet, have you ever picked up the phone and simply asked the consumer “I know you just spoke with my I-Net manager, but I wanted to personally thank you for giving us this opportunity. Have you received all the info you requested?” The answer may shock you. I know it did me!
This last 2 weeks I have been thoroughly engrossed In processes long before they normally escalate to my desk and I can say that salesmen still “cherry-pick” and form judgments and opinions about who is a “buyer” and who is a “shopper”. The worst are from customers who have contacted your store within the last 90 days but have not yet purchased.
Inevitably, the notes on the contacts become redundant and I marked more than sale “lost” and “bought elsewhere” because the salesman said they were waiting 6 months (oddly enough that was the original note on the show room visit event).
Prejudices form and the easy way out and next and newest beckons more enticingly to most.
Don’t just look at your reports, get involved! Shop your own store, or get a friend to, and quit delegating every task thinking that some are “beneath” your level and what you have to do is more pressing. Inspecting what you inspect will most certainly raise your expectations and provide insight into your business that no report can show.