The Screwed Up letters – The Sales Prevention Officer – Part 1

Exchange of correspondence from a senior Sales Prevention Officer to a junior.

My dear Remora,

Greetings! It is a pleasure to welcome you to your new role as Junior Sales Prevention Officer.

You will be pleased to know that you were placed first from 100’s of applicants. Sales prevention is not for everyone. It demands tenacity, endeavour and commitment. In our organisation we take sales prevention seriously and have a dedicated Sales Prevention department. You are a small but vital cog in that well-oiled machine. Our long term survival depends on your ability to prevent sales.

Why we need to have a sales prevention department.

It’s all about long term sustainability. Our mantra is this – what got us here will keep us here. It is all about stability you see my dear Remora. Growth is an illusion. It is based on an assumption. You know what “Assumption” means? It means you make an Ass of U and sumption. And growth is such an over rated concept. Our vision is to stem the tide of innovation and creativity so that we can focus instead on being the best at what we were.

I am writing to help you to thrive in your new Sales Prevention role. My role is coach and mentor, a guide to help you develop.  Here are a few things that might help. It is worth looking first at our aims. They are:

  1. Team well-being. To prevent new sales that might impact the motivation of the firm. Do all you can to safeguard the emotional and physical well-being of the team by reducing undue activities caused by generating new sales. Senior management has a responsibility to ensure that all the staff members are not unduly stressed. Preventing sales is one way of achieving this lofty goal.
  2. Resource utilisation. We must prevent the over use of resources as that incurs further investment that in turn drives down profits. By holding back new business and sales we will ensure that we extend the life of the existing resources thus driving up profit.
  3. Customer retention. If we take on new business, our existing customers will feel ignored. That must not happen. The Client Life Time Value of an existing client is significant. Don’t threaten this by bringing on new customers.
  4. Reputation. Our customers know where they stand with us. New customers are hard to please. If they complain, our reputation is at risk. By avoiding bringing in new business we can reduce that risk.
  5. Metrics and KPIs. We know what we need to measure and how to interpret the runes. Our manual systems are perfectly up to the job, so long as we don’t take on any new business. It would create pandemonium in the sales office if we were to consider updating to a modern CRM system.

That should clarify what we do and why. You will initially be assigned responsibility for incoming sales prevention activity. You are the gate keeper. Repel them at every opportunity.

Bon chance Remora, I look forward to hearing of your successes. Write often, but please do not use that Email facility you seem so keen on. A well-crafted hand written letter is a sign of a well ordered and unhurried mind. I will write again soon to guide you in your new role.

Based on the Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis.

PS. If you want to learn more about Sales Prevention, call me on 0117 230 3166 or email me at . Happy to discuss where Sales Prevention is rearing its head in your business.