This blog post is part of a series I call 'Simple Management Tips' that deals with everyday management problems and how to solve them in a simple and non-academic way, easy to understand and implement in the organization

THE MULTICHANNEL CHALLENGE

If you sell three products through three different sales channels, you most likely will have six managers, three channel managers and three product managers

Who's responsible for the sales?

The product manager can claim that failure to reach the targets is because the channel managers failed to sell - and the channel managers can claim their channel is not performing due to poor products

 The product manager (green) is responsible for the sales of his product across all three sales channels, and the channel manager (blue) is responsible for the sales of all products in his channel

The product manager (green) is responsible for the sales of his product across all three sales channels, and the channel manager (blue) is responsible for the sales of all products in his channel

Let me introduce the three-figure-matrix :-)

Looking at the matrix it is clear that the sales responsibility of one product lies with the product manager and that the same goes for the channel manager; he is responsible for the sales of all products in this specific channel

This, however, does not solve the blame-game, as a manager still can blame failure to reach the target on another manager

The interesting part here is what happens in the cell where both green and blue are - and this is where it's possible to make a difference

Adding the sales in this specific cell to the performance targets of both managers (product manager #1 and channel manager #1) will force the two managers to collaborate to achieving the sales target in that specific cell 

In other words, if the channel manager does not feel the products are 'good enough', he must engage in dialogue and problem solving with the product manager, that in turn will have a similar challenge if that specific sales channel is not performing

Experienced managers will already now have seen the beauty of the model; as all managers keep their overall responsibility of their products or channels, no-one are losing responsibility and 'power' which makes this model easy to implement in the organization

Simple, easy, beautiful

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