Describe a specific change initiative that you participated in that seemed to work well
I work as an assistant sales manager at a local private label company in our home. Just like most businesses, we are normally paid a retainer and a commission for every new sale that we bring the company. While this process is effective in ensuring that the sales agent are always looking for new customers, it has the problem of resulting in poor service since the agents focus on closing sales rather than retaining new customer. To overcome this challenge, I proposed a sales structure that would ensure there was the provision of good customer service and focus on sales. In this new structure, a weighted payment system was developed in which sales agents received 6% for every sale that they made, 2% for a return sale, 1% for customer request for the agent, and 1% for customer training. This system was an improvement of the old system in which agents received a 10% share for every sale they made. Interestingly, both the management and the sales agents loved this new system. In the first three months after its introduction, sales rose by 14% in each consecutive month. The return customers were 28% and there was an increase in customer training on how the company’s products work.
Describe a specific change initiative that you participated in that did not achieve its intended objectives.
As the finance organizer of the student’s union in my college, I was tasked with the duty of rolling out the cashless payment for all necessities that students purchase within the school premises. Generally, these are snacks, books, pens, and beverages. This payment system aimed at ensuring that all the students stayed abreast with the changes in the financial sectors and embraced technology in their daily activities. Despite our best efforts to encourage students to adopt cashless payments, there were challenges that we had overlooked, which made the change process ineffective. Firstly, there was the issue of incompatibility which was due to the different payment companies that students used. Some used Apple Pay, others Google Pay, Samsung mobile payment, and digital cards from various cashless financial providers. In addition, there were issues on the ability of the point of sale machines running out of charge or black outs, which made the POS that entirely depended on electricity not to work. Due to these factors, we were forced to abandon the system.
Compare the 2 initiatives in terms of what happened and why you think the results were different.
The success of the first system was due to the adequate research and experience I had in sales. Therefore, I was able to understand that in order to be successful in sales, a sales agent should be effective in both relationship and transactionary marketing. These views were held by both the agents and the management. In effect, their collaborative efforts led to the success of the system. The second system failed due to the student’s union management lack of insight on the challenges of cashless payment. In particular, they had failed to oversee the challenge of incompatibility of payment systems.