Mark Robert Halper

Sometimes reps promise more than they should; more than the company can profitably deliver. Sometimes they give work away, just to get a contract signed.

Before you say that you'd simply fire the rep, consider this: Sales reps are the ones feeling the heat on the front line. And it's too easy to criticize what took place after the fact.

Yes, sales reps do and say things in the field that they wish they hadn't. But don't be too hard on your sales staff if you see an occasional mishap. More importantly, do you think the rep did the best they could, and is this project profitable as sold?

On the other hand, if a salesperson is a “give-a-way artist,” that's another matter, and I know how to stop it. If they want to give away work beyond what's authorized, take it out of their commission. If they give away more than their commission, take it out of another job. No one has the right to give away something that's not theirs. If the commission is 25% of the gross profit and the salesperson wants to give it away, who cares? But they don't have the right to give away anything beyond that.

—Phil Rea shares his sales strategies each month through his MasterMind Program. For more information, call 866.441.7445.