The Director of ITC’s Galician office is Raquel Maquieira and Industrial Engineer with extensive experience in marketing both services and goods. She was interviewed regarding the work done by ITC within the IGAPE framework of supporting SMEs in the development of sales. Raquel is the manager of this project:
“Competing means developing an effective sales protocol that enables companies to achieve their goals”. This is the leitmotiv that underpins all stages of the processes to strengthen sales efforts that make up the Re-Acciona programme. This service has been provided by the consultancy ITC since its initiation in 2012 and in which more than 120 Galician SMEs have taken part.
We are talking to Raquel Maquieira, a member of the ITC team, who will give us details of how the programme works.
What is competition for you? Do you believe that an SME or self-employed person should embark on a programme like this?
- Competitiveness is the ability of a company to maintain or increase their market share by creating a competitive edge over their rivals.
- In a situation such as we have nowadays in which markets are saturated by offers of ever more comoditized products, it is essential to design and develop strategies that offer the consumer a higher added-value. Internationalisation and innovation are two of the key levers that SMEs can employ to increase competitiveness.
How does the sales strengthening programme benefit SMEs? Which of your services are the best rated?
- Ours is a very practical approach which aims to enable SMEs to position their products on home and overseas markets. As advantages derived from the service, I would like to mention, amongst others: the definition of a value-added offer; the constant search for new niches in which the company has a competitive edge; systematising company sales processes; repositioning products in the market and a constant monitoring of their competitors.
- Our clients tell us that what they most value are the strategic insights they glean from the months that the projects last.
This service is based on redesigning company sales structures and process, could you give us a short description of your methods?
Our aim at ITC is provide SMEs with the tools they need to improve sales practices through learning processes and developing sales agendas. Hence we offer a methodology that favours non-prescriptive training designed so that the SME in question can make self-sufficient progress once the project concludes..
What are the main stages of the process? Is there any one of them that is especially difficult to develop?
- The first step is to sit down with the company to identify those areas within the sales department that need improving or are not functioning optimally. Once we have drawn up the list, we can map out a plan of action and a timeline. From here on the wheels are put into motion and a report is drawn up on completion of the programme.
- Rather than difficulties I prefer to speak of the need to focus the service on the need at hand. The programme lasts only 4 months, hence the need to target the solutions to obtain positive results in each and every stage from the outset.
To finish off, although you have managed many projects, is there any one that you would especially like to single out?
Of the more than 120 Galician companies we have advised since 2012 success stories abound, a few examples would be: for a Galician wine producer we designed an international marketing campaign including redesigning the label for the American market. One company from the sanitary industry increased sales by 50%, or the outstanding success a producer of timber for the construction industry had in opening new market niches
Interview published here: http://reacciona.igape.es/index.php/blog/