Jefferson Pilot: Growing the Sales Force Essay

1633 Words Nov 23rd, 2014 7 Pages
Jefferson Pilot: Growing the Sales Force

Discussion Questions

1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of using a career sales force versus an independent sales force?

A career sales force that the company hires, trains, supervises, and compensates likely will be more loyal than an independent sales force. As the case notes, these career salespeople sell only JPF policies. They also learn and contribute to establishing and maintaining the organization’s “culture.” They learn how things work at the company and can do a better job of negotiating the bureaucratic structure of a large organization.

On the other hand, an independent salesperson by definition represents a variety of companies. He/she is not necessarily loyal to any
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But, there is no job description; and the SVPs are unhappy that each one does not have his/her own coordinator. With three coordinators serving five SVPs, it is not hard to imagine that the SVPs have differing demands and expectations. Further, there would naturally be conflicts as to which SVPs work takes priority if there are competing demands for a coordinator’s time. The case notes that the coordinators are salaried employees. The case does say that JPF is reluctant to hire more people who are seen as increasing overhead.

4. What recommendations would you make to JPF to help it deal with these problems?

With respect to the SVPs, you may suggest that one problem seems to be that the company did not have an established sales force plan in place to guide development of the IMO channel. If it had, it could have had the SVPs agree and understand up front that at some time the territories would be further divided. This makes the general point that companies need a well-thought-out sales force strategy and development plan to guide them.

Note that one problem here is that the company has taken the standard sales compensation plan for insurance agents, 100 percent commission, and applied it to the SVP who may indeed be recruiting IMOs and indirectly agents, but this is different from an agent’s job. Is 100 percent commission the appropriate compensation system for someone who also must depend

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