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All Work & No Play

Targeted mailings and research are in. Client golf outings are out. If you expect to sell in today's economy, you need to stop wasting everyone's time.

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This story appears in the August 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

For Chad McClennan, the only thing that's changed about selling is everything. Compared to a year or two ago, says the 35-year-old Chicago entrepreneur, leads are harder to get, and fewer turn into prospects. It takes more time to turn those prospects into customers, and, if they buy at all, it's usually for different reasons than in the past. He's paying his salespeople differently-while hiring more of them-and investing more in training, supervision and technology to support sales.

"We've changed organizationally and technically, and we've changed the sales process and compensation," says the president and CEO of The Customer Group, a 25-person customer service consulting firm. "And we're beginning to see results."

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