SALES VS MARKETING
Right now, mention the term “sales” to any employee in the financial industry, and they will be reminded of persistent salesmen. Today, the practice of “sales” holds a negative connotation built on forced interaction. As a result, people tend to avoid “selling;” they are hesitant to advertise their work, for fear of being “salesy” and annoying. Whether from laziness, carelessness, or fear of stepping out, employees can easily slip into the “order-taker” approach, which maintains a focus on ticking boxes and meeting quotas. This is an impersonal and forced approach which lacks proactiveness and excitement. This mentality makes the employees unmotivated, and the clients dissatisfied.
EMPLOYEE CULTURE SHIFT
This negative mentality forms the foundation of a poor employee culture. Employees end up disinterested, less likely to take pride in their work, and less likely to collaborate with their coworkers. In contrast, employees in a strong employee culture have made a conscious shift away from this negative approach. Proactively building a positive employee environment is key to building a successful institution overall.
This shift in perspective draws the employee away from the dreaded “sales” mentality and into the “marketing” mentality, which favors sharing value and forming relationships rather than making unsolicited sales pitches at clients.
At the core of this marketing mentality is the practice of “active listening,” a tool utilized in everyday conversations to hear, understand, empathize, and respond to another person. Listening becomes “active” when conversationalists are on the alert for opportunities to help others by not only sharing value, but by potentially solving problems in the process. This focus on others changes the perspective of the employee and does not inconvenience the listener, rather it helps.
“WIN, WIN, WIN”
Altogether, they work to create the “Win, Win, Win” ideology [WWW]. The WWW occurs when the institution gains a new client, the employee earns a reward, and the clients obtain a higher quality service or product that they wanted or needed.
This ideology is based on a referral-type system. This requires the employee to invest in the success of the institution. Their investment increases business, heightens attentiveness to client care and relations, increases collaboration with their coworkers, and encourages them to understand the institution as a whole. A positive company culture and other incentives help employees realize their personal ROI, and the promise of returns is what causes anyone to invest.
Their returns may come in the form of monetary incentives, through promotional gifts, vacation time, etc.; it depends on the institution and the needs of the employees. Through this system of referral and reward, employees are encouraged to communicate more effectively with one another, and to bring the conversation outside of the workspace. Additionally, establishing a “WWW” referral culture allows employees to connect with their co-workers and understand what they do, thus building a stronger community and increases the institution’s ROI.
On paper this sounds great, but the process of establishing a strong referral culture is hazy and often neglected. To remedy this information gap, Element has partnered with Performance Delta, a company that specializes in organization and referral, to deliver answers and results in the retail banking market. Performance Delta’s system of ReferralTrac lay out a method that is tried and true; they have smoothed out the kinks and found the best practices when running a referral system in an institution. Earlier in the summer, Element sat down with them to have a conversation on their “WWW” implementation method. Their programs have proven ROI increases as large as 300%-460%, encourage accountability, drive growth, strengthen communication, and promote the necessary culture shift. The video below explain just how ReferralTrac works, and how it has been able to spark a culture shift in the employees, resulting in exponential ROI of the participating institutions.
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Written by Bryn Baldasaro. Edited by Alexander Kalpakgian. Video directed, produced, and edited by Christopher Bailey. Filmed and photographed by Christopher Bailey, Alexander Kalpakgian, Scott Worroll.