When Sales tools are used properly, they become tremendous solutions, for example:
* your salespeople update their opportunities in your Sales Force Automation application of choice (mine is Landslide.com) in real time (a minute here, a minute there)
* your salespeople create slides for presentations, proposals, webinars and demos
* those in your company that blog use it to generate credibility, visibility and leads
* other social networking, like the use of LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are also used to generate leads
* email is used for updates but not in place of conversations that should take place on the phone
But how often do you observe your salespeople doing any of these things?
* taking a couple of hours, during the day to update the pipeline
* taking a couple of hours to work on a power point presentation they'll need next week
* spending time using a social networking site to communicate with others
* responding to emails that can wait until evening
* doing something other than focusing on finding, moving and closing opportunities
When your salespeople focus and play with the tools instead of using the tools to support their selling efforts, the tools become part of the problem. Am I suggesting a 15-hour work day? No. You need balance, you should spend time with your family. But salespeople must do the work that doesn't involve interacting with their prospects, at times when they can't reach their prospects.