Archives for January 2014

A Pebble In My Shoe

Photo courtesy iStockPhoto

Photo courtesy iStockPhoto

Do you have a pebble in your shoe?

More importantly do you have a pebble in your shoe and you are ignoring it acting like it isn’t there?

I did…my pebble was my 2014 goals.

As in previous years, 2014 is off to a fast start. The demand for increased sales revenue by your organization or customers if you are running your own group is beginning to resurface after a pause for the Holidays.

Mixed with that, many business owners, sales leaders and sales people have a strong desire to improve in 2014.

Sound familiar?

So how do you meet these objectives? You can wing it in some cases for a while, but for how long? This is cute, but will lead to disaster.

Like many sales professionals I receive a lot of my fuel from my goals. I keep these as simple as possible and cover four key areas of importance:  spiritual, family, financial and business.

As January has progressed I just felt that something was missing from my three business goals for 2014. They needed to be revised- now. By the point, I had a stone in my shoe.

Much needed solution.

After our Wednesday morning (January 22, 2014) conference call I felt the urgent need to revise my business goals, so with my next meeting at 11:30 a.m. I started immediately to see what improvements could be made.

Starting the process..

Goal 1 was very easy, very obvious just the right thing to do- easy revision.

Goal 2 was the same, but required a little more thought- a slightly challenging revision.

Goal 3 was where I hit the wall. What I had originally written was sincere, but it needed to be destroyed and I was at a fork in the road- torn between fear and comfort. I revised it again. A little better, but not quiet there. Frustrated, I pushed back from my desk and thought ‘what is missing’?

I walked to the kitchen for another coffee refill and couldn’t get back to my office fast enough.

Within a matter of moments five thoughts came to me out of the blue.

  1. Avoid the same path although it has been successful.
  2. Trust your creativity.
  3. Listen to others (regardless)
  4. Stand by your convictions.
  5. Persist and persevere.

With this insight my third goal fell into place within a matter of moments.

It was there all along, I just needed to change my thinking- more specifically I had to let go of some residual fear that has been there longer than I care to admit. I had to remove the pebble from shoe.

This had to be done; I have family, my company and our customers depending on me.

Just the day before a friend of mine shared with me that his 13 year old son had written a unique definition on ‘perseverance’.

When I heard it I was amazed as I think you will be as well. My first thought is how can a 13 year old bring this level of insight and encouragement, with limited life experience? Hey at 13 I was riding my bike, and playing Little League Baseball.

Great insight

“Perseverance is a quality formed in the crucible of trial and hardship.

Without tragedy, no one can persevere.”

Danny Pearson, January 2014

To reach my third goal I knew that it was the best step for my company and our customers.

It will take each of the five above qualities with a healthy dose of “step 5- persist and persevere”.

The pebble is gone; I feel more focused and deliberate now than in recent years.

Guess what… YOU can too!

What lessons can you learn from this move?

  1. When you harness your fears and set your goals correctly, they will provide direction and encouragement when it gets tough- and it will.
  2. When you fully commit to goals that really define your passion and creativity they will help you reach unprecedented growth.

Questions

  1. Is there a pebble in your shoe as well?
  2. Are you willing to make the needed adjustments?
  3. What will it take for you to take the next step?

Go ahead, stop now, and remove the pebble from your shoe. You will be glad you did.

Now you are ready!

Hey, you don’t have to travel this road alone. If you want to connect and chat that works too.

Let’s go create our best year ever!

Strength in numbers,

Andy

4 Words to Create Sales Growth for You in 2014

Credit: iStockPhoto

Credit: iStockPhoto

As the New Year approached you have received several newsletters, and blogs encouraging you not to make a resolution but to choose ‘one word’ to focus on in 2014. The ‘one word’ approach is simple yet powerful. Jon Gordon does a tremendous job with this approach.

Now that the New Year is in full swing you will quickly recognize that your ‘one word’ will sharpen your focus beyond your wildest imagination. The results is another story altogether.

If you haven’t yet chosen your ‘one word’ and are looking for perhaps a word or words that will create sales growth for you, then let me suggest the following four words.

Four simple words:

Three years ago our team began to implement each of these to grow our business and suggested these to our customers. The outcome has been phenomenal in terms of enhancing account management growth with existing customers and acquiring new business as well.

These four simple words are: Sustain, Develop, Regain, and Acquire

What do these words mean to you the sales professional?

Sustain

This group of customers within your territory need to be sustained, and are vital to your organizations survival, yet at the same time this group of customers offers little organic growth opportunity. Nurture and protect your customer but spend your time wisely.

Develop

This group of customers within your territory offers organic growth opportunity that will propel your sales to another level. Creating a solid plan around each of these customers and available product or service that can be added can further fortify your position and increase your commissions. Simply put, it’s about taking market share and a plan to get you there.

Regain

With the downturn in the economy in 2008 several customers of your downsized immediately this was a natural response to what they were facing. Today, many of those have survived and are looking to grow, they need to grow. It will be to your advantage to revisit those offering new opportunity. The upside is they know, like and trust you.

Acquire

The health and vitality of any sales organization is created by new business acquisition throughout the year. Once you consider your annual attrition rate this hits home quickly. Time for action.

The first two words sustain and develop focus on existing customers while regain focuses on former customers. Acquire focuses 100% on new business acquisition.

Hitting our sales goal in 2014 is a top priority for all of us.

Creating your sales strategy and tactics around one or all the four words will take your sales to new and exciting levels.

True confessions… my ‘one word’ for 2014 is PERSIST. My four words forever in sales growth will be sustain, develop, regain, and develop.

How can you use these 4 words to create sales growth in 2014?

-Andy