- Selling Power.com points out that sales force ethics begins with the company and its policies. There needs to be a defined set of ethical sales practices offered to each sales professional. The company should host regular trainings on sales ethics, and offer advice on how to deal with as many situations as possible. The sales force will look to how the company is run to determine how they will conduct business, so there needs to be a code of ethics in place throughout the entire company. The company culture needs to be based on doing good and honest business so that when sales representatives are faced with a question about how to proceed in any given situation, they already know what is and is not acceptable based on their company culture.
Involve Sales People
- "The Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management" tells us that one of the best ways to instill a strong ethical code in sales people is to have them involved in the process of creating and monitoring ethics within the company. It is not enough to develop a set of rules and then dictate them to the sales force, have sales people get involved in creating those rules and then make each sales person accountable for the proper execution of the ethics code. Help sales people to see that ignoring ethical sales practices does not give a representative an upper hand, but rather that it hurts the company and the ability for the company to do business. When the organization's ability to do business is affected, then that can hamper the advancement of the sales force. Getting sales people intimately involved in the ethics building process can help them to understand its importance, and make everyone accountable to each other."
- According to the business experts at the Value Forward Network, taking action against a sales representative based on a customer complaint can help to undo any dedication the sales force has to ethics. In some cases a sales person may follow all the rules of ethical behavior, and a prospect or client may still complain to management about the representative's actions. Investigate all ethics complaints thoroughly, and be sure to let the representative know the full results of the investigation. A sales force may find it difficult to adhere to a code of ethics if complaints against them are not fully investigated before any punishment is administered.