sales-activity

During my experience of either managing multi-million dollar sales organizations or coaching and training businesses on how to improve their selling operations, there is one belief that I am convinced of:

“Activity Breeds Results.”

Whether it’s executing face-to-face visits, making outbound phone calls (i.e.“dialing for dollars” ), prospecting for new customers, proactively maintaining existing client relationships, or massive quote generation with timely follow-up, the “sales” people who create the most activity are the one’s who tend to be the superior producers.

An obvious performance management necessity for any selling organization is the establishment of quotas or targets, coupled with a reporting measurement mechanism that can “scoreboard” the results for all of the players on your sales team…on a daily basis.

Most businesses will have some form of a CRM (Customer relationship management) system to facilitate this tracking & reporting for their business.

Now here’s the key to actually optimizing this “activity notion”…

“Managed Activity Improves Results.”

Mix in a component of consistent daily performance management, including praising for successes while coaching on those down days, will tend to multiply those results!

In order to accelerate your organization’s selling momentum, promote massive activity and manage it accordingly.

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In the press of business (and life), it is so easy to get caught up in things, to feel trapped in the “whirlwind,” and become overwhelmed by all that is going on in “your world.

The rapid evolution of technology during our current stage of the “Information Age” makes it even more challenging to stay focused and deliver on our commitments.

Among certain individuals, there exists what I consider to be a truly exceptional trait, an oddity that, given my personal experience, exists in about 10 % of the business professionals that I have worked with and/or coached…

“doing what they say they are going to do,

and by when they say they are going to do it!”

Given this ultra-competitive world in which we live, it amazes me how often people or businesses are slow to, or in some cases don’t, follow-up on requests, obligations, vows, inquiries, etc.

Those unique people who indeed do what they say, and within the time frame that they promise, truly separate themselves from the majority who either are delinquent with, or worse yet, abandon their commitments.

Here’s a closing thought…perhaps we should consider delivering more than what we promise, faster than it is expected!

do what u say

success team

My previous blog responded to the question: “Do the best leaders surround themselves with great people, or do they help the people around them become great?” with the answer “both”.

Focusing on the second part of this question, here are 10 common denominators that I’ve observed which help people become great (or at least much better) at what they do:

  • EVERYONE understands the company’s Vision, Direction & Purpose
  • There are clearly defined roles and responsibilities for every person on the team
  • KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) and SLA’s (Service-Level Agreements) are established with each individual, and agreed to by both the manager & employee
  • Actual performance is measured against targets and “score-boarded” for all to see
  • Good results receive timely acknowledgement & praise
  • Poor results receive timely “coaching” for how to improve going forward
  • Employee strengths and opportunity areas are identified & understood
  • Strengths are exploited and areas for improvement reinforced
  • Ongoing growth & development within the organization is encouraged
  • Candid praise & constructive feedback occurs consistently with EVERYONE

Here’s a Leadership Challenge suggestion for you: review each of these 10 items and rate your business on a scale of 1 – 5, with 1 being poor & 5 being great.  Then, prioritize your opportunity areas for focused improvement based on the lowest scoring results.

 

A question for you to ponder: Do the best leaders surround themselves with great people, or do they help the people around them become great? 

My experience tells me the answer is…both!  But let’s start with the first part…

During a recent conversation with a highly successful manager, who operates in the challenging food & hospitality industry, a point was made about team development. He noted that one of his key objectives was to hire people who were better, smarter or more talented than he was.

This resonated with me as this has become one of my essential success tenets.

Decades ago, once I became mature enough to put my ego aside, the realization that if I secured, & surrounded myself with, really talented people, perhaps my leadership role would become much easier. And it did!

Often I’ve worked with leaders who feared talent that was potentially as good, or even better than they were.  They let their ego’s and foolish pride get in the way of doing the smart thing, which subsequently led them toward hiring marginal talent compared to what was available in the market place.  This ultimately resulted in less than optimal performance.

These “bosses” shared an underlying concern that the potential “superstar” would make them look inferior, or even worse, eventually “steal” their leadership position away!

This type of self-centered thinking not only limited the team & businesses success, but truly restricted that leader’s ability to grow through the organization.

The reality is that leaders who surround themselves with the best possible talent tend to produce better-than-average results. Further, they consistently demonstrate the ability to develop talent for the organization, which often facilitates professional growth and advancement.

Perhaps you have seen this happen in your experiences as well.  Or even worse, if you happen to be one of those who has unknowingly inhibited your success by falling into this trap, this could be the perfect time to take on that new approach for building your team.

surround

The most effective strategy I have used to calm myself down from worrying about money, failure, and success has been to read biographies of people long dead.  Within this therapy lies the realizati…

Source: Work, Success, Reversals, and Death

Leadership…in the making! Incredible perspective.

Two-Minute Tune-Up

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If you want a kick in the entitled pants, this documentary will do it for you.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIsQ0B43Q9Y

If you think this is just another, “eat-your-vegetables-kids-are-starving-in-Africa” post, maybe it is, but it sure helps me with perspective.

Complaints about family, school, work, or your country club? Call the third-world-country hotline or 1-800-get-a-clue.

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Whether in business or your personal life, speak for intended as well as unintended audiences.

Two-Minute Tune-Up

So many hurt feelings, betrayals, and communication issues occur because we expect other people to have the same sensitivities, preferences, and communication language that we do. Before we judge another’s motives, it might be helpful to review the following list:

  • Have you ever said something unflattering behind someone’s back…primarily because you thought you couldn’t say it to their face?
  • Have you ever been accused of being insensitive about something that seemed so innocuous to you?
  • Have your motives ever been misunderstood?
  • Have you ever avoided someone to prevent a confrontation?

We are all trying to get around the block with the least amount of pain. The growth challenge is to learn about perspective differences before we judge.

Give peace a chance.

photo courtesy of lucacix.diviantart.com

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Seek first to understand…

Two-Minute Tune-Up

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Even if you have been thinking it for a long time. Especially if you have been thinking it for a long time.

Ever run into a brick wall trying to reason with someone? So frickin’ frustrating!

Ever notice that sometimes you are the brick wall? Especially when someone dares to have a contrary opinion to yours?

It’s taken a while, but I am learning to say, Tell me more about that, or That’s interesting before I start my reBUTtle. Consequently, I have found out I am wrong more often than I thought; improving, only because I was willing to peek over my brick wall and discover an overestimation.

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Hallowed Halloween Reflection

Two-Minute Tune-Up

The roots of all man-made (or woman-made) terror:

  1. Hatred
  2. Duplicity
  3. Greed
  4. Jealousy
  5. Bitterness
  6. Arrogance
  7. Deception
  8. Ignorance
  9. Selfishness
  10. Bigotry

And nothing is more terrifying than when I find these things in myself.

walt-kelly-pogo

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Have a happy (and honest) Halloween!

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In reference to a prior blog on “The Review”, this process is often challenging and ineffective in terms of generating the desired performance improvement that Managers are seeking.

The traditional performance appraisal reviews past performance, and is often an inaccurate reflection of true performance due to:

  • inadequate preparation or effort,
  • poor documentation or record keeping,
  • any number of biases.

I believe that what really matters to is to provide your employees with input that leads to the development of their skills, which ultimately benefits them personally as well as serving the organization’s future.

There is much discussion in HR circles about eliminating the annual or semi-annual review process altogether. Such a change should foster more frequent conversations and updates about an employee’s performance, which is what most workers want.

ConstantONGOING coaching and feedback is one of the keys toward achieving continuous employee growth and development.

I’m not saying micro-management, but rather taking the time to ensure that every employee:

  • understands the clear expectations surrounding their role and responsibilities,
  • knows where they stand in terms of their performance,
  • and has a vision of how to grow and improve.

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