As customers become more and more educated regarding the options available to them, they require more flexibility and customization to meet their needs.  If your strategy is to differentiate based on Customer Intimacy, you better have a plan to ensure sales decisions are made close to the customer.  How do you know if internal strategy decisions will result in customer churn? 


Sales Decision Makers


Benefits of Centralized (Command & Control) Decision Making:


  • Consistent execution
  • Cohesive culture during expansion
  • Reduction in risk (might be positive)


Benefits Decentralized (Field Autonomy) Decision Making:


  • Customer centric approach
  • Speed to Market
  • Strategy is tied to customer direction
  • Increased customer intimacy
  • Idea generation (risk is rewarded)
  • Pulse on the market
  • Sales force morale and energy


DOWNLOAD: This tool to help you determine if your organization should have a decision making structure that is more Centralized or Decentralized


Sales Decision Making Tool


How to Decentralize Decision Making


  1. Reduce levels of unnecessary hierarchy – hierarchy is costly and creates a wider gap between the customer and where decisions are made.   Many organizations found that they became more flexible after reducing middle management roles in the time leading up to the economic decline a few years back
  2. Implement Customer Feedback mechanisms – don’t try to assume what the customer if thinking.  Deploy multiple feedback channels to ensure you are receiving direct feedback from your customer base
  3. Enable your front line Sales Managerspeople inherently want to do what is right for customers, the company, and themselves.  Give them the parameters and direction so they understand what is expected and get out of their way.  If you hire the right people they will embrace the autonomy and run their patch as if it was their own business.  This will help your Go to Market Strategy come to life at the field level


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Scott Gruher

Orchestrates and designs the perfect project strategy, one engagement at a time, to ensure that every SBI client makes their number.

Scott joined SBI in 2010 with years of hands-on experience in sales leadership and enterprise selling. Since his arrival, he has helped dozens of organizations dramatically accelerate growth, from Fortune 10 organizations like Phillips 66 to fast-growing cloud service organizations like InfusionSoft. Scott specializes in cross-functional alignment. He helps leaders align around the growth goal and design the right processes to bring the strategy to life. His unique combination of real world experience and a pragmatic approach to problem solving have made him one of SBI’s most demanded resources.

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