Diminishing Fields


Beauty brands have been aggressively making changes to field staffing over the past 5 years. Realignments and brand groupings being the most prevalent. This is due in most part to the ever-changing retail environment that is more challenging to achieve sales goals and balance a P&L. There is a great deal that goes into those P&L's; gwps, samples, new product launches, advertising, training, staffing...the list goes on. So with the diminishment of foot traffic in brick and mortar, big box brands believe that the line on that P&L to reduce that makes the most sense for profitability is the sales field. I come from the field and for decades the joke at every company is 'it must be the fields fault' or 'what is the field doing'. Because there exists a lack of understanding, communication and trust between the corporate offices and the field teams. Personally, I think it's a bit of the Emperors New Clothes for those that sit in the offices believing that they know more and it's the fields 'inability to execute' what is necessary to make the 20% increases over last year. If you sense a bit of sarcasm, you are correct. It's always been the 'us' and 'them' mentality when it comes to corporate offices versus the field. So the field is paying the price with more and more work for the same amount of money. Or worse yet, no work at all. The ownership needs to be shared, communication needs to be established and ideas need to be fostered to solve this problem for everyone. Or perhaps a mirror might be a good gift for those that are making these decisions. What would I know? I come from the field.

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