The paperclips didn't need a sales pitch. Neither do your clients.

SELLutions

How to have a Successful Meeting

by GSchulz 20. October 2014 01:52
       How often so we have a meeting; one on one, group, impromptu or scheduled, that you walk out of scratching your head wondering what that meeting was truly for? What did it accomplish?   Having a meeting agenda is very important. It should involve several things; 1)   Time-frame for the meeting. Everyone should know what time they are to be there and the expected end time to be able to plan. 2)   Begin with the end in mind. Its important for us to know what the purpose and expected outcome is for the meeting? There fore we can be prepared for it ahead of time and not waste time. 3)   What are the action steps after the meeting to be accomplished and by when?     Here are some questions to ask at every meeting to help be more successful and less of a time suck!   Typically from the leader;   1)   What are you working on (projects assignments etc.)? 2)   What do you see as your priorities and why? 3)   What so you need from me/the group to accomplish it/them? 4)   What are your timeframes for completion on it/them?   If you are having a smaller meeting (one on one) or just want to help move the meeting along you can ask these same questions in a different context. For example;   1)   Here is what I am working on. 2)   2) I see this or that as my priority and why. 3)   I could use help with or I need ______from you to move to the next step. 4)   Here are the timeframes I see for completion. Does that work?   Its not that tough. Remember, not everyone in the room wants everyone elses’ update on their ‘stuff’. Do that in a one-on-one and make your meetings quick, effective and a teachable moment. Click here to share this post.

How to have a Successful Meeting

by GSchulz 13. October 2014 07:19
 How often so we have a meeting; one on one, group, impromptu or scheduled, that you walk out of scratching your head wondering what that meeting was truly for? What did it accomplish?   Having a meeting agenda is very important. It should involve several things; 1)   Time-frame for the meeting. Everyone should know what time they are to be there and the expected end time to be able to plan. 2)   Begin with the end in mind. Its important for us to know what the purpose and expected outcome is for the meeting? There fore we can be prepared for it ahead of time and not waste time. 3)   What are the action steps after the meeting to be accomplished and by when?     Here are some questions to ask at every meeting to help be more successful and less of a time suck!   Typically from the leader;   1)   What are you working on (projects assignments etc.)? 2)   What do you see as your priorities and why? 3)   What so you need from me/the group to accomplish it/them? 4)   What are your timeframes for completion on it/them?   If you are having a smaller meeting (one on one) or just want to help move the meeting along you can ask these same questions in a different context. For example;   1)   Here is what I am working on. 2)   2) I see this or that as my priority and why. 3)   I could use help with or I need ______from you to move to the next step. 4)   Here are the timeframes I see for completion. Does that work?   Its not that tough. Remember, not everyone in the room wants everyone elses’ update on their ‘stuff’. Do that in a one-on-one and make your meetings quick, effective and a teachable moment. Click here to share this post.

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sales calls | sales managers

Everything You Need To Know About Social Media Etiquette For Business

by GSchulz 12. October 2014 07:46

Over the last few years, social media has evolved into a powerful tool for businesses. Not only does it help businesses build a strong reputation online, but it can also help businesses reach more customers and increase engagement.

However, before you can dive into social media, there are a few rules you need to know first. Although it might seem like social media is a simple marketing tool, there are some important factors to help in mind:

1. Always respond to customers.

Whether it’s a good or bad comment from a customer, always respond to their feedback. It’s also crucial to respond to their questions within in 30 minutes to an hour. This rule applies primarily to your Facebook and Twitter accounts.

2. Carefully use hashtags.

Hashtags are a powerful communication tool for your brand, however they can become very tricky, too.

When using hashtags to boost engagement, use hashtags that relate to your brand and industry. Especially if you’re sharing content on Twitter and Instagram, you’ll want to make sure you’re using the right hashtag to connect with your audience.

3. Publish engaging content.

If you want to build relationships with your customers through social media, then you need to create engaging content.

Post videos, photos, and interactive media to your Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest accounts. Visual content is key to building relationships, so make sure your strategy follows this rule.

4. Be human.

When customers engage with a brand on social media, they want to feel like they’re talking to a person. As you post content and respond to customers, use a friendly and genuine voice. This will improve your brand’s reputation and build stronger relationships with your audience.

If you follow these rules, you’ll greatly improve your business’ social media strategy. To learn more of the rules regarding social media etiquette, check out the infographic below:

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The Frustration of Others in Sales

by GSchulz 30. September 2014 02:42
I just got off the phone with a very upset salesperson. Sandy is what you might call a “people person”. She is very outgoing, vivacious and friendly. She is chatty at times which doesn’t always make for the best salesperson but, when push comes to shove, she gets the job done.   She was upset because her new boss, Valerie, sent her a very “cold” email. Response and she got upset that she is in some sort of trouble. 

I asked her a bit about what she thinks it might be about and she didn’t know but was really worried. She loves her job and hopes the new boss likes her.   Sandy sent Valerie an email telling her about a great sales call she had. Sandy gave lots of detail in the email about how they got along, what questions she asked and how interested the prospect was to get together and talk further about working together.  

Asked Valerie if she would be able to go with her on this appointment she had set up for next week since she doesn’t feel she know the product as well as she would like and would feel more confident if Valerie joined her.   Valerie send back an email that simply said,” I’ll have to deal with this tomorrow”. That’s it. No “Hi Sandy”, no “good job on this” and no “from Valerie” at the end of the email.   

I actually was surprised at Sandy’s emotion behind this so I asked her to send the correspondence to me.   So what happened here? In a word, nothing. Sandy sees things, like we all do, though our own eyes.  There have been several studies over the years about how people interpret things. There are huge cultural differences but even among people with similar cultures there are different personality traits and styles that we often don’t recognize, or even think about.   

I want to review some so we can get clear on our understanding because lets face it, in business as in life, we have a distinct advantage if we can read another person and help them feel more comfortable with us. I am not suggesting that we change out personality. I am suggesting we be more aware of the differences and work to mirror them. When someone sees you as similar to them, which is the idea of mirroring, they begin to feel more comfortable with you, often only subconsciously. That is enough though to start out the conversation or relationship on the right foot.   

First of all there are four different personality styles that we all general fit into.  We are often combinations of a few but here are the general definitions;   Dominant – A dominant style is the person whose need is to be in control and have power. This person is typically a leader in an organization because that is how they see their role. They are typically very task oriented and say things like “just get to the bottom line”. They are not very patient because they are always on to the next thing. Influencer- The life of the party owns this style. This is the ones that you’d say, ‘you’re a real people person’. Lots of these people end up in sales because they feel like they can persuade others to their way of thinking. This is not necessarily true. We often fall victim to this. It takes more to sell they just the ability to bond with another. (Sandy in the above example)   Steady Relater- A steady relater is just what it sounds like. 

This person has a need for little change and little conflict. If someone possesses this style they are often great supporters for your organization. Give them a task and they will get it done. Just be careful not to make quick changes on them, they will silently rebel.   Cautious Thinker- This is the detail oriented , data driven organized employees. These people are very bright, well read and often initially a bit skeptical of others. They will get the task done as well but they will cross all T’s and dot all I’s so have some patience and don’t ask for it too quickly.   

Hopefully this will shed some light on why some people do what they do and if you understand why they do it, you can work better together. Getting frustrated because someone is different then you and does things different then how you might do them is only going to frustrate you more. Understanding will help get things done.  
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Is Your Sales Manager Managing Time well?

by GSchulz 23. September 2014 08:24
Is he or she balancing priorities properly? How do you know? A big dilemma faced by most executives is what is my sales manager doing and more importantly what should they be doing?  It is a mystery but it shouldn't be.

There are 3 priorities in my opinion that should always take the bulk of your sales managers time. Some are obvious and some not. Priority one is hiring. Yes hiring. I am tired of hearing executives say to me, “well of course we have the regular 80/20 rule; 20 percent are really good and making their numbers consistently and the other 80 percent are inconsistent, one month up one down.” Why is this ok? Why is this an accepted practice? The most common reason for this is a simple one. We have 6 territories to fill and we have sales people in each of the territories so we have no hiring need. What? Here is the question. If your sales manager or any of your salespeople told you they have a good amount of accounts right now, they are pretty happy with them and if they lose one, then they will look for another to replace it, what would you do? Most executives say to me, “Are you kidding? I would fire them.”  Well that’s what you’re doing when you allow your sales force to stay stagnant with non-performers and look for replacements when someone leaves.  

Looking for sales superstars is something that is ongoing and constant. If you found someone better then your best person tomorrow wouldn't you find a place for them in your organization? Of course you would so why are you not constantly looking for that? Your sales manager should spend no less then 30 percent of their time on all that is hiring; looking, phone interviewing, doing assessments, in-person interviewing etc.    

Priority two is coaching. Who do we coach on our team to get the most from them? Where do sales managers spend their time, with A B or C players? Most would tell you with the A players to help close deals, then they would tell you with the Cs since they need the most work. I would tell you the B players will give you the biggest bang for your buck. Though this is priority two, this should take up about 40% of your sales managers time. Lets first Identify what each of the players are.

A players are typically about 20% of your sales force. They are consistently hitting their numbers, driven to continue on that path and don’t allow excuses to get in their way. B players are good strong salespeople, have good attitudes but really need some help to reach the next level and are open to it. Probably about 40% of your group. The C players are excuse makers, blame others for their failures and are inconsistent in their sales numbers.

They make up about 20% of your sales force. Also my own observation only, I often notice these are the reps that have been around for a long time and either have fallen in success and been ok with that or have always been average at best but have been in the organization for a long time so they have simply moved along. These are typically about 20% as well. Spend time with B players. They want to learn and will take best to the coaching.

Your ‘most improved’ nominees are sitting here. Priority three is accountability. Keeping your sales people accountable is very important for several reasons. First of all if they can track what they are doing activity-wise, they can themselves track what is working what isn’t. In sales you are in some respects, in your own business.

Sales people can create the amount of money they want to make and to help them by identifying what that looks like and help them analyze successes and changes they should make for the most success is the sales managers job. Additionally, we need to know for ourselves what it truly takes to make a success in a particular area of the business to create forecasts and projections.

This should be about 10-20 % of their time. Greta Schulz is President of SchulzBusiness, a sales Consulting and Training firm. She is a best selling author of “To Sell IS Not To Sell” and works with fortune 1000 companies and entrepreneurs.

For more information or free sales tips go to www.schulzbusiness.com and sign up for ‘GretaNomics’, a weekly video tip series or email sales questions to greta@schulzbusiness.com     Click here to share this post.

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