Training new sales members how to present products to designers and facility managers is a lot of fun for me. But I am often reminding them of the basics and feel more like their mother than their sales coach: Do not forget to thank them for seeing us, thank them for their time, their consideration. Ask them what they think, be polite and listen. I am always remaining them to leave something behind, not just a business card but something else, a small gift, a brochure, a price quote. Help them so they can see what kind of person you are.
Most of all I remind them to bring the fireworks - fireworks are the fabrics and finishes. Designers love to see finishes, to touch textiles, to see materials. And good suppliers need to constantly work at discovering new materials that work better or have some new feature. Materials trends change often - we need to stay current and relevant and bring the tools to designers that they need to fire up their creativity!
Some change is based on environmental considerations, but price, availability, color, wearability - it all comes into play. Contract furniture is made to order; someone has to decide what the materials will be. I guess that means it is up to me to bring the fireworks. Anything to hear the customers go “ooh” and “aah”…