When Ftse 100 Ceo's were polled and asked the question, "Are your sales people calling on the right customers, at the right time, with the right offer?" 99.3% responded, "I don't know." Which shouldn't surprise. Sales and Marketing are still the last bastions of protected turf, limited management scrutiny and lack of accountability.
Unfortunately, the important lessons learned and the gains in effectiveness and efficiency derived from lean manufacturing have not been successfully translated to the Sales and Marketing environments. And, it's understandable. Sales involves people doing business with people, not people doing activities with machines and processes. Sales is perceived to be more of an art form than a science. Yet, ironically, Sales is virtually a pure science and, as such, is both measurable and predictable. If we are correct, the disciplines of Lean can easily be applied to the Sales and Marketing functions resulting in significant increases in effectiveness and bottom line results.