Building a Best-In-Class Sales Team

Consumer Packaged Goods

The client

One of the largest consumer packaged goods companies in Canada, with over 250+ sales team members


  • Flat sales due to mature categories, price deflation and a food safety setback
  • Profit margins squeezed by commodity price increases and increasing trade spend by demanding customers
  • Desire to create a best-in-class sales force focused on driving profitable sales growth

HORN Solution

  • Created a clear articulation of a sales culture grounded in customer centricity, results orientation, and personal accountability, and aligned with corporate values
  • Established behaviour-based sales competencies for all levels of the sales team, then assessed all sales team members against the defined competencies
  • Developed and executed a multi-year, blended learning curriculum spanning all aspects of selling and created standard selling tools to enable efficient application of learned skills
  • Defined standard management meeting expectations to instill consistent best practices for managers
  • Provided training and toolkits to support leaders in conducting high-quality, motivating coaching with their team
  • Incorporated employee development into manager bonus structure to reinforce the importance of team development

The Impact

88% compliance with new management practices (up 13% year over year)

91% of sales people perceived new management practices were building a positive sales culture

65% increase in sales team knowledge acquisition

Significant improvement in negotiation and sales outcomes from sales team