A Must Read for Marketing/Sales/QA Managers, and Also for Senior Executives and MBA Students

The following was posted on Amazon yesterday by a CEO in California:

Most CEOs/COOs/CFOs would agree:

  1. Marketing/Sales are both an art and a black box, or even a black hole as it seems to be a continuous cash guzzler.
  2. Sometimes CEOs feel they are captives to the Sales VP because even though they are not happy with their sales performance, firing and replacing them with new ones is not a sure win.
  3. Marketing campaigns are like shooting in the dark. If you don’t shoot, you will not catch anything. But if you keep shooting in the dark, pretty soon the bullets will run out. Most CEOs feel their Marketing VPs are “addicted” to all those fancy marketing programs without assured ROI.
  4. VP/Marketing and VP/Sales are like a divorced couple. The best way to pacify them is to keep them separate forever. But how can CEOs afford to do that?

Systems Thinking in Sales and Marketing

Systems Thinking Guru Russell Ackoff once said that the System cannot detect its own problem and it must be detected from a high order system level. Marketing and Sales VPs cannot solve their own dilemmas and problems; it requires the CEO/COO/CFO in conjunction
with other functional VPs to work together in a systemic way.

However, among all the functional disciplines, Marketing and Sales are the two most mysterious and hard to understand arenas for the whole executive team. “Sales and Marketing the Six Sigma Way” is the first book ever that not only presents the real CORE of the respective Marketing and Sales function in an easy to understand system way, it also reconnects Marketing/Sales function with the rest of the business in a systemic manner. The introduction of “Customer Value Mapping” in the whole Marketing/Sales process is truly a remarkable contribution by the author, Michael Webb. I personally first saw that idea on Webb’s business website 18 months ago and applied it to the company I worked for and realized an unbelievably rewarding result.

A Well Written Book

A side benefit of reading the book is that with Webb’s superior writing style people can easily absorb the whole idea of Six Sigma and Lean Management without going through all the terminology and jargon commonly found in other books on Six Sigma. This is a very important feature of the book as its main appeal should be for all corporate executives and Marketing/Sales managers, not just QA coaches.

Among over 100 books on Marketing or Sales that I have read since 1990 after founding my own company, this book is definitely on the top. It will also be a great companion book for MBA students to get bridged to the real challenge of the business world and get well trained with a systemic framework that has rich real world success track records, including my own company’s fantastic experience.

C.T. WU, Ph.D. in E.E.
Santa Clara, California
September 11, 2006


Michael Webb

Michael Webb founded Sales Performance Consultants to create a data-driven alternative to the slogans and shallow impact offered by typical sales training, sales consulting, and CRM companies. Michael helped organize and delivered the keynote speeches for the first conferences ever held on applying Six Sigma to marketing and sales. Connect with me on LinkedIn.

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