Marketing and Sales: Conflict and Cooperation in Consumer Product Organizations

1382 Words Apr 28th, 2006 6 Pages
Some might consider sales and marketing synonymous, one task split into two. However this could not be further from the truth. Sales are activities that lead to closing the deal and signing an agreement or contract. Marketing is the courses of action implemented to reach and persuade prospects (Lake, n.d.). The relationship between these two departments is analogous to the sibling rivalry of Siamese twins, joined at the hip and constantly arguing. Different in culture and personality, marketing and sales are traditionally at odds but cannot successfully perform their assigned tasks without the other. To avert the negative impact that arises from this conflict vigilant observation and swift action is necessary. Only in this way can a …show more content…
These types of personality divergences will lead to resentment and feelings that efforts being made are unappreciated, leading to offense and decreased productivity for all involved ("Co-Ordinate", 2004). As a manager, there are many avenues available to calm the friction between the two departments. However, one of the most essential things is to integrate the two departments with frequent and detailed communication. Sales and marketing should share goals, power, information, expertise and resources as members of the same team. This would help absolve the detrimental ‘us versus them ' mentality ("Co-Ordinate", 2004). Having a clear plan and unified strategy is also essential for the smooth running of an organization. With all policies set, this will preempt any disagreements over controversial issues such as customization for individual customers. Though each customer is unique and sales would like to treat them as such, marketing cannot design programs for every account. Customization becomes a pressure point in most organizations as salespeople apply it beyond the bounds marketing finds acceptable. Setting the limits of customization and defining the processes for usage approval will stop future arguments from developing (Shapiro, 2004).
A question frequently asked is which department dominates the relationship between marketing and sales. The answer depends on the type of company. For consumer
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