Quaker Steel

Essay by WesthuizenUniversity, Master'sA-, June 2004

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Maureen Frye wants to change the call patterns of salespeople responsible for selling extruded titanium alloy products at Quaker Steel. If she is able to successfully implement her plan, she would then like to extrapolate this process to other sales functions at Quaker. Frye's initial attempts to change the call patterns yielded negligible results; she has currently been tasked by senior management to develop a successful implementation strategy. Management has afforded Frye the latitude to propose radical changes to Quaker's organizational philosophy to help achieve her targets. Frye believes that a 20% reduction in Class 6 accounts can yield an increase in sales revenues exceeding 30% annually.

The primary problem facing Frye is lack of incentive for salespeople to adopt her plan. Salespeople are paid on a straight salary basis; incentives were typically not afforded for performance metrics. Though a modest cash bonus system exists for performance, one district sales manager (DSM) indicated that it was never utilized.

Internal research by Quaker indicated that a sales representatives' primary motivation was the experience of a successful sale. Secondly, they enjoyed working with customers to solve problems. Monetary rewards was the lowest ranked motivator. This lack of incentive is especially problematic from senior management's perspective. Whereas senior management would like to implement this call pattern strategy by Frye in order to increase revenues, the actual salespeople have no explicit or implicit incentives in order to actually achieve such results. Given their motivation, it should be expected that the salespeople would maximize opportunities to make smaller sales and to work hands-on with customers instead of within the bureaucracy of larger company. Currently, salespeople have very little reason to sell to larger customers, as it would result in a lower absolute number of sales, despite the fact that total sales and sales...