Social Intelligence – Part 2
By francisco.casas on Aug 12, 2008
So we continue on the theme of Social Intelligence (SI) with the basic premise that its primary purpose is to add personal value to the elective user such as a sales rep. For a definition of Social Intelligence see http://blogs.oracle.com/socialcrm/2008/07/social_intelligence.html
In this post, let us address a few simple questions: 1) How do you keep that elective sales rep coming back; 2) make them feel that they have some control and; 3) adjust the application to their knowledge of the industry, territory or present events.
Why is control important? I have never met a sales rep that likes being out of control of their destiny. As much as sales reps are naturally social, they are natural control freaks. At least the ones that consistently make their numbers are.
Sales reps cannot control the past; they live in the present and they would really like to control the future so they can take home bigger commission checks. As far as SI is concerned, they can and should control the levers that predict their future.
Let us say that a loan officer at Bank of Sky believes that a customer’s “net asset value” is more important in recommending certain loans to customers than the loan officers at Bank of SubPrime. The executive team at Bank of Sky may have an importance of “high” to “net asset value,” while Bank of SubPrime may have an importance of “medium”. That in itself gives the each bank the ability to add value to their loan agents (sales reps). What about if the loan agents of Bank of Sky believe the importance of “net asset value” should really be “very high”. The loan officers of Bank of Sky should be able to override their executives with their anecdotal knowledge by changing the value from “high” to “very high”; over time the “hidden” predictive model will move to “very high”, as more and more sales reps express their anecdotal knowledge through their control.
Another example are insurance agents. An agent that sells insurance in New Orleans may decide that a “flood area” designation is more important to their colleagues in Los Angeles. However, the Los Angeles agents feel that “earthquakes” are very important. The agents in each of the Enterprise Social Networks could decide the importance of each attribute, or they should be able to add new attributes to be considered. In this way, not only are they exercising more control, but they are also adjusting the industry model defined by their employer.
What the examples above have shown is the ability of the sales rep to have significant control of how their company does business and how the predictive engine will behave towards them. Indeed, the individual sales reps, can in effect, override their executive team who set guidelines that are often too generic for business or worse, out of touch with reality. The knowledge of the crowd is very powerful, more than that of any executive.
What keeps sales reps coming back? Social Intelligence that learns from them and adjusts to them thereby, providing continuous personal value in changing markets.
I hope you found this useful.