Pablo Picasso said that, “action is the foundational key to all success.” While I agree with Picasso, he is missing out on one key element. They need to be the ‘right' actions.
Too often in sales and business people are doing things, but they tend to be the wrong actions. They are engaged in activities that feel good, that keep them busy or beneath their level of compensation. Even worse, there are those who engage in no actions.
What actions or activities should you be doing to increase your success? Here are 5 ‘right' actions to improve your success:
Activity without purpose or forward momentum is simply busy, wasteful energy. Truly successful people in sales and business do actions & activities that contribute to some future result. Their actions are directly correlated to their success. Follow the 5 here and you will start increasing your successes.
Conferences are an excellent way to get exposure and network, and a prime source for new prospects. Here’s the challenge though; you’ve just registered for your next conference with the intent of getting business - now what?
Most companies and salespeople really have zero game-plan how to make the most of their conference. The intentions are there, but intentions don’t produce results. As a consequence, the conference ends up like all other conferences. Nothing to show but a hangover, a collection of business cards that find their way into the circular file and wasted resources.
To maximize and get the biggest ROI at your next conference, follow these 5 rules.
Conferences can be fun, and they can also be long and tiring at times. Either way, they’d better be profitable and successful. That’s what your company is counting on. Follow these 5 rules and you will improve the ROI and success of your next conference.
The #1 one most important success factor companies have is also the #1 problem that all businesses face. Sales.
Sales are the #1 reason companies succeed or fail. You can argue that people, products, services and process are more important. They’re all important, but sales are senior to all. Without sales, none of those matter.
This isn’t a what came first argument, the chicken or the egg? Most businesses today are started by selling and idea or concept, and then creating it after its been sold. Without sales you don’t need employees, you don’t need products or services and you certainly don’t stay in business. So if lack of, or not enough of, sales are the #1 problem businesses face, why do so few companies do little to nothing to fix sales growth?
There are many reasons/excuses, and they usually come down to lack of resources; whether those resources are time, money or other, it’s usually resource related. What’s ironic is resources are the worst excuse of all. Sales development doesn’t require tremendous amounts of time. It needs consistency. Sales training isn’t expensive. It should actually pay for itself with results.
Abraham Lincoln said, “the best way to predict the future is to create it.” The best way to predict your sales success is to create it. Your first step in creating your sales success is sales training. To take away any excuses, we created the ideal 1/2 day program for you. It’s motivational with tangible sales take-aways, and it’s cost effective. For more information, and to learn more for your team, click on the link.
You’ve heard the expression “fake it till you make it.” It’s used frequently by entrepreneurs and professionals alike trying to get to the next level. It’s a great belief until you realize that almost 100% of the people saying it have no idea what it really means.
Most say it and believe it’s about pretending to be a certain way until you succeed. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Fake it till you make it is not about:
Fake it till you make it means living and breathing like an expert, working like an expert, and not pretending. Successful people never stop doing what made them successful. It’s a lifelong decision, not a choice until you think you’ve become successful.
5 Traits of Elite Salespeople
Every sport, every profession has their version of the “elite” performer. Sales is no different. There are certain traits that make them elite in their respective fields, and they are consistent in these traits. In sales, there are 5 primary traits that all elite sales professionals live by.
Will focusing on these 5 traits alone make you an elite sales professional? No! But by not focusing on them you are guaranteeing that you will never play amongst the elites.
Product Training vs Sales Training
To train on product or to train in sales, that is the question. You certainly need to know your product offering, but what’s the point if you can’t sell your product? You need to know how to sell, but what’s the point if you don’t know what you are selling?
The reality is both are essential to your success in sales. The further troubling reality is most companies mistake product training for sales training. They believe that their product or service is what you sell. So most, if not all, product training focuses solely on all of the features and technical merits.
When you sell features, technical specs, etc., you become the same as all of the competition. Now you’re competing, rather than dominating by solving problems, fulfilling needs and delivering value. This is where high quality sales training needs to be implemented.
Sales training, or sales development, is designed to teach salespeople the necessary competencies and skills necessary to uncover needs and deliver value-based solutions. Features are not solutions. They are not value. Features contribute to an overall solution and fulfillment of needs. The value is “what’s in it for them” when the customer or prospect says YES.
Product and Sales Training are both important. You need both. They are not the same, and they serve different purposes. Don’t accept only one. Demand both.
How many times, and how many managers, have you heard say and focus on cutting expenses or reducing margins? Virtually every company I go into, they talk about cutting in some capacity.
Is your company this way? Is that the focus of management? If so, they are dead wrong. You don’t fix by cutting. You can’t cut your way to profits. In fact, cut to far and you cut yourself out of business.
Why? Because the more you cut the more pressure you place on what’s left over. Worse, the pressure is placed on companies biggest internal asset - its people! Check any pressure cooker of a business and watch what happens. Its most valued internal asset quits, and that is the beginning of the end.
So if not cutting, what then? It’s all about top line growth. Expenses are not the problem in companies. Income is the problem. The top line of every single Income Statement is Revenue. It’s SALES. That’s what counts.
You want to improve margins, then increase your sales. You also have to raise your selling price. Easier said than done for sure. Do you know why? Because companies, your company and maybe even you, focus on cutting. You’re not focused on growth. You’re not focused on selling.
It’s obvious who’s focused on sales and who’s worried about cutting. Companies who focus on top line growth invest in top line growth. They spend the bulk of their budgets hiring, training and developing high producing sales teams. Why? Because they know that sales is the lifeblood of companies!
Interestingly your personal life is no different. Your problems aren’t your expenses. Your problem is that you don’t have enough revenue to cover your expenses. Go sell and earn more. Suddenly, your expenses are no longer an issue.
Our society has become so polluted with the supposed financial experts. They’re telling you to save and not spend, to cut back and to live modestly. “A penny saved is a penny earned.” No it’s not. It’s a damn penny. That is a bullshit set of lies companies and people have bought into. Saving is easy when revenue is high enough. Saving is not possible when revenue suffers.
How’s your revenue? How’s your lifeblood? Make no mistake, sales and revenue are everything. Shift your focus and invest. Expenses shortly will no longer be the issue.
Time Management is a Myth
Is there such a thing as effective time management? Can you effectively control time to your advantage?
Absolutely not! You cannot control time no matter what anyone try's to sell you. It's not possible to manipulate the 24 hours we are given everyday. Time management is a myth.
You can, however, mange what you do with those 24 hours. You can manage activities that you engage in. So the real question is, what should I focus my activities towards?
The answer is a direct reflection of your goals and results. Do you want more money? Than what activities will drive more money your way? Do you need more sales, then prospect more. Do you need better closing skills, then get training.
Do you want to lose weight, then your activities must reflect weight loss functions. Whatever your goals are, your activities must directly impact those desired results. What activities you fill up the white space on your calendar with are how you manage the time you have.
You must focus on activity management. Time management is a myth. You can control the activities you engage in. You cannot control time.
Sales, selling, the art of selling, whatever you want to call it, has lots of rules. Some rules are better than others. I noticed a colleague recently talking about how many contacts she had and the number of connections she has made.
Lessons from a Billionaire
"There are 1645 billionaires world-wide, and contrary to popular belief we don't all wear hoodies, jeans and tennis shoes."
A few months ago I was networking at a business roundtable where the keynote speaker happened to be one of these 1645 billionaires. He is a distinguished member of our community, and an incredible philanthropist. When a billionaire (not a millionaire) offers advice, you pay very close attention.
That first statement was his opening statement, and not what any of us expected. His message centered on the very art of networking, and how crucial it is to any individuals success in life. He offered brilliant and real usable information. Here are just a few of the highlights and his "billionaire" reasoning:
We knew the billionaire. No one remembers the guest. Hmmm, lesson learned from breakfast with a billionaire.
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