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My performance has significantly increased without working harder but by working smarter! I would encourage any sales person to at least invest a couple of hours with Corporate Strategies, unless you're one of my competitors then please keep doing the same sales process you have been using for years!
Cody Strub, Vertex, Inc.
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Bill Bartlett as appeared in the Business Ledger, August, 2011
The time has come for small business owners to return to the basic behaviors originally used to create and grow their businesses. A quick glance of any news reporting site is enough to distract the business owner from performing critical behaviors to drive their prosperity. In my experience, too many businesses experience sidetracking and find themselves drifting from their original mission.
A good friend of mine recently purchased a new car that was loaded with incredible "bells and whistles". His car had a sonar system in the front and back to activate the breaks in case he was unaware of a vehicle stopping too fast in front of him or approaching too fast from the rear. There were "blindside" warning alarms installed in both side mirrors in case he swerved into another lane accidentally. Additionally it had cameras in the rear to prevent him from backing into another vehicle. My friend felt his new car was safe from all accidents due to all of the safety systems and features.
Unfortunately, my friend had an accident yesterday in this car equipped with all the warning systems designed to prevent such occurrences. You see, my friend is a "daydreamer" who, on a warm sunny day, lost focus and didn't hear any of the warning alarms. He wasn't hurt, but his new car was ruined!
Many business owners act in a very similar fashion to my friend. They build solid businesses and equip them with all the alarms necessary to prevent failure. Regrettably, distractions created by the current economic conditions and their fear associated with it prevent them from seeing the signs of self-inflicted failure.
The basic business principles of growth still apply in this economy or any other economy you could imagine. All businesses must develop a product or service to meet or exceed the needs of their consumer. Next, all businesses must target the consumers who should purchase their product or service.
Here's the critical next step: All businesses require a sales force with prospecting, selling, closing and servicing skills. There is no magic fix for this last step! Note: If you are a business owner with a sales force, please stop accepting the excuses associated with the economy and start holding your sales team accountable for prospecting, building relationships, qualifying, closing—and repeating these activities on a daily basis. If you don't have a sales force... you must personally commit to sell as well as lead or your business will fail.
Digging any business out of its current rut takes a careful examination the basic behaviors performed when it was first established. Just as all sports teams do prior to their upcoming season, it's time to return basics. There are no shortcuts to success.
Go conquer your worlds!
Do you have a personal story about how returning to the basics has helped create success that you'd like to share? Leave a comment below.
Bill Bartlett is the president and owner of Corporate Strategies & Solutions, Inc., a Sandler Training Center. He is a certified Sandler trainer and business growth expert, and has been training and coaching presidents, managers and sales people for more than 17 years. He may be reached at 630-778-1500 or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org