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Emma Botfield (Managing Director UK & Ireland at RS Components) coined the term ‘MarSales’ as a merging of Sales and Marketing on the first episode of The Insiders podcast. In this blog post, we delve into Emma’s aspirations to promote perspective diversity in ‘MarSales’ and her belief that different perspectives will drive innovation.
Emma’s career spans almost twenty years, joining RS Components eight years ago. She previously held a variety of positions in different sectors including Relationship Manager, Head of Customer Services and Head of People and Talent Development in Sandwell Council.
The diversity of her experience has provided her with great insights into the world of Sales and Marketing. Emma described her analogy of the marriage between Sales and Marketing…
“I sometimes think of it when you think of a marriage, you have two sets of in-laws. When they first meet, they’re sussing each other out and one wants to be the better in-law than the other. If you can get them to focus on the couple rather than themselves then you’ve got a really powerful force.”
Once the “in-laws” of Sales and Marketing are both working towards the same thing, Emma believes that breeding a diverse culture within these departments will increase innovation. Furthermore, Emma spoke of the importance of communities in the workplace and of team members bringing a growth mindset to their work.
This perspective diversity, or diversity of thinking, will enable the industry to develop and evolve. “Having the belief to just think differently, ask different questions be a little bit more curious” benefits everyone.
Emma also emphasised the importance of “learning from history” in order to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past. Historically, the Sales industry has been one of the most male dominated. According to the Harvard Business Review, women only make up one third of B2B sales jobs.
Besides the obvious moral and progressive reasons for increasing diversity, there have been a number of studies into the business reasons, too. Recent studies from McKinsey, PWC and NBS are just a few among many that have highlighted the advantages of diversity in businesses:
These studies undoubtedly support what Emma pointed out in the show, “different perspectives drive different outcomes to solve different problems”.
Now that we have established that businesses would benefit from increases in diversity – how do we do it?
As Emma mentioned, it is a generational thing that “we’re never going to magically turn overnight”. To start to turn this tide, Emma’s suggestion is to increase the viability of “Mar-Sales” as a career path.
Her aim is to make sales at RS Components an exciting and desirable destination for all by building communities where innovation and diversity are encouraged to thrive. This would need to be implemented at entry level and also for experienced, professional business leaders.
Get in touch to see how durhamlane can help you to overcome your sales challenges, and to hear more thought leadership in sales and marketing listen to The Insiders podcast here.