In a recent newsletter, Jim Womack from Lean.Org has mentioned the hunters/farmers concept in sales, and encouraged the farmers in a lean organization. For the people who have not heard about hunters & farmers, hunters are the aggressive sales people whose interest is in getting sales higher and faster for the moment. While farmers can be quite future-minded, nurturing the customers, slowly building them up to a long term relationship.

These days organizations prefer hunters (we call head-hunters, not head-farmers; isn’t it?) and that helps them meet the short-term targets very well. When the hunters get worn out, they get new hunters! When the customer is not happy being hunted ruthlessly, the hunters go and find new customers and hunt them down! I guess that is why Jim Womack preferred farmers than hunters.

But, farming is not very attractive. And nobody has patience. What do we do now? ‘Hunters who occasionally farm’ does not sound nice! Shall we encourage farmers, who hunt occasionally?