Case Study

Restructuring to Create a Single Unified Global Sales Force

An Interim Director International Sales, Switzerland and U.S. integrates a medical sector company’s sales units into one high-performing international sales force, merging operations and staff into a unified team across more than 100 countries.

By Georg Larch

The Client 

Our client is a renowned Swiss medical device company in the field of eye care operating internationally. The group develops, manufactures and globally distributes cutting-edge solutions and medical devices including slit lamps, tonometers, chairs and stands for refraction workstations, as well as biometers, perimeters, surgical microscopes and other equipment. They also offer virtual reality-based solutions and simulators for medical education.

For more than 160 years, the company has worked with well-respected scientists and physicians worldwide. In keeping with the principle “Look closer, see further”, they apply keen attention to detail to develop and produce progressive and comprehensive solutions of the highest quality for eye care specialists.

The Challenge 

The company had two separate sales units, and management decided to establish a single global sales organization spanning more than 100 countries. It would include the company’s own subsidiaries in the US, UK and Germany, as well as independent international distributors worldwide.

In order for the new sales structure to be implemented, an Interim Director International Sales was needed to develop and implement a plan until a permanent successor could be found. The project would be supported by the company’s CSO, as well as the CMO, and involve all stakeholders.

The Solution

Having long experience integrating and motivating teams, the Interim Director determined that in addition to including all stakeholders, the best course would be to establish a valuable open collaboration with the sales and marketing teams of both units as well as customers. The goal was to eliminate siloed thinking – as well as siloed actions.

He proceeded to design a roadmap with milestones for integrating and motivating the two sales teams, and successfully implemented the plan. His leadership and wealth of experience in the field led to the creation of a single high-performing sales force with full transparency for all team members.

In our client’s words, "This Interim Director is a master at getting things straight to the point and always manages to push them forward. He is analytical, quickly gets to the heart of the problem, offers suitable solutions, and is not afraid of tackling new things. Communication with him is fast, thorough and always goal oriented. He takes on activities at lightning speed and makes concrete and constructive suggestions on how necessary changes are to be tackled, and implements them operationally with pinpoint accuracy. He always joins in and leads the way. It's a pleasure to have someone like him as part of my team."

The Result: Client Voice 

With the team established and prepared to move forward with a shared sense of direction, the Interim Director ensured a successful transition including handing over the reins to permanent management.

Based on the successful completion of this mandate for the group headquarters in Switzerland, the CSO – and simultaneously the CMO - asked the Interim Director to lead a similar team-building process in the company’s US organisation – a very large and important part of its global business activity.

The US assignment entailed taking on the role of Interim Vice President Marketing and Sales with the primary goal of creating a new regional sales structure in the US with a new team of sales managers. The focus in the US was to develop a single, visible client brand across the main divisions in accordance with the “one face to the customer” strategy.

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