The Two Types of People in Your Company

Updated: Mar 1, 2020


I grew up between two brothers who are engineers, and when we were all starting out in our careers, I was the only “salesperson” at the dinner table. I was the brunt of many jokes ranging from used cars to Willy Loman to “coffee is for closers.” We graduated to reenacted Tommy Boy scenes.


It was more than mildly irritating to listen to these young men speak about how they were the critical cogs in their organizations - so smartly developing fantastic and unique products. Only to find out that their salespeople couldn’t sell or if they did, they practically gave away all the profits because they couldn’t articulate the value!


Sound familiar to anyone? Little did I know that this type of dialogue was happening in companies everywhere.


Fast forward several years and our conversations are quite different. As each one of us has held leadership positions in our respective organizations, we know the truth is this; there are only two types of people in any successful organization:


  1. You serve the customer directly

  2. You serve those who serve the customer


Let’s be clear - both are equally important.


The reality is this: every single person in the organization contributes to the customer experience. No matter what sort of business you're in or what role you have; from owner to entry-level, from customer service to manufacturing - you are responsible for serving the customer, either directly or through a team member who has direct customer contact. In short, this means no matter your role, everyone is on the sales team!


If you want to change faster, innovate more, and anticipate customer needs faster than the competition, every role in your organization must have an unwavering commitment to focus on the customer at every single touchpoint.


The following are best practices of a customer-focused, sales-driven organization. How many of these describe you and your company?