Telco Comms: Fight and fancy

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Telco Communications wants to be among the top five B2B dealers in the land, mentioned alongside the likes of Phonebox Communications and Sprint Communications.

Operations manager Sean Smith reckons that, in a few years, Telco can make good on such an ambition. It is quite a boast for someone who has only been in the mobile industry since January.

Telco was set up in 2003 by directors Lee and Sharon Burke as an Orange business connector, and both still remain with the company.

“There was no real strategy or direction. In the early days the industry was all about big commissions, big bonuses and easy sales,” says Smith.

Smith was selling finance and insurance products for the likes of Audi in those days. He was recommended to Lee Burke by a mutual friend and was approached to turn the business around.

“It was a challenge I couldn’t turn down. The directors wanted a good man in the hot seat. It was a massive opportunity to grab hold of something that was crumbling into something potentially huge. Telco was treading water and the headcount was shrinking.”

Smith knew he was in for a fight. He says he arrived to find staff working out of two rooms in Bridgenorth, Shropshire, from computers running off the Windows 98 operating system. “Hardly any sales were being generated,” he says.

But Smith embraced the challenge, and trusted in his willingness in the first place to put in the hours and to review company processes in detail.

“A total change of direction was needed. New premises and equipment were needed to attract better quality staff. We needed a city centre base and a couple of telesales staff to generate leads so we could all go out and close sales.”

Full article in Mobile News issue 450 (October 19, 2009).

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