Paul Charles & Associates                                         
                                           Sales Management Consultants


   In this Issue:
      Business Development is Hard...
      Managing Quotes
      A Few Quick Seconds
      Latest Blog Posts

Sales & Marketing Newsletter Volume 117

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Did You Know?

The culture of any given enterprise is most often a reflection of its leadership, and the sales force tends to mirror that culture when interacting with customers and prospects.

"I've never seen a company that was able to satisfy its customers that did not also satisfy its employees," said Larry Bossidy former CEO Allied Signal, Inc.

"Employees will treat your customers no better than you treat your employees."

Others suggest that an organization tends to sell in a fashion that is directly related to how the organization buys — in other words, if the organization evaluates suppliers and makes buying decisions based primarily on price, then they also tend to sell at lower margins; and vice-versa.

Either way, as leaders, we have a profound impact on how our sales people interact with the marketplace each day, because the direct and implied messages they convey to our customers are based upon their impressions of our position on a range of issues — from how we evaluate and buy things, to how we talk about and treat customers.

Similarly, if the sales force is not enjoying high-levels of success in the marketplace, our cultural approach to improving their approach — i.e., building upon strengths versus focusing on weaknesses — can significantly impact their success or failure.

So what can we do to positively lead or impact the selling process?

Here are 5 steps you can take...




Latest Posts!

Sales Call Frequency? Go...

5-Step Business Development Plan. Go...

Sales Management & the Rear-view Mirror Go...

How to Close More Sales... Go...

 Managing Quotes
"It’s not about having the right opportunities. It’s about handling the opportunities right."
—Mark Hunter 
"You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do."
—Henry Ford
"Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesperson, not the attitude of the prospect."
—W. Clement Stone
"There is little success where there is little laughter."
—Andrew Carnegie
"One of the tests of leadership is the ability to recognize a problem before it becomes an emergency."
—Arnold Glasow 
"Outstanding leaders go out of their way to boost the self-esteem of their personnel. If people believe in themselves, it’s amazing what they can accomplish."
—Sam Walton  
Paul Charles & Associates
519 Mammoth Rd - Londonderry, NH 03053
[603] 537-1190
     "Helping people sell more
                                 & communicate better"

The Hard Part of Business Development

We all know that growing a business or sales territory is hard work. As noted in one of our on-line articles, a good start is to create an annualized business development plan. But simply crafting the plan isn’t enough! We must commit to the plan as well as to the proactive components of the plan — or as many people call them, the “hard part” of business development.

Honest Self Assessment
It’s important to realize that business development consists of both reactive and proactive elements.

Running advertisements, updating a web site, posting blog entries, distributing newsletters or attending networking events might all be parts of the plan, but once these action steps are taken we often find ourselves in a reactive position – that is, waiting for someone to call.

These reactive action steps are the “easy” components of business development. The more difficult aspects of business development include proactively working to make things happen. These more challenging activities include sending follow-up emails or letters in which we ask for or suggest next steps, leaving proactive voice-mail messages, making follow-up calls, and scheduling meetings.

Research, pre-call planning and some imaginative thinking are also part of the mix, but the “hard” part of business development is staying the course.

Statistics indicate that most things “happen” after someone (a seller) completes five or more contacts with a prospect. But most “sellers” make fewer than three approach calls – thus the challenge most of us face when trying to make things happen.

Setting goals and monitoring results are the best methods of ensuring success.

The first step is to identify the number of new customers or clients you’d like to add each month or each quarter

Using a reverse funnel approach, the next step is to estimate the number of appointments, lunches or meetings you’ll need to conduct in order to achieve the new customer goal

Step three is to determine the number of prospects you’ll need to contact (and how many times) in order to schedule the desired number of meetings

Now the real work begins… make the calls and measure the results

If appointments or meetings seem hard to come by, then review your metrics as well as your planning and messaging.

Growing a business or sales territory is not easy work. If you are able to achieve sufficient growth in a primarily reactive way – advertising, referrals, and so on – then you’re among the fortunate. For the rest of us, committing to proactive business development is the best approach.

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A Few Quick Seconds…

Here are a couple of related articles from past issues you might have missed, and which generated especially positive feedback:

As each new year arrives ‘tis the season for, among other things, New Year’s resolutions. In the business world, many will resolve to pursue revenue growth in one way or another, and our intentions will be good! But the road to "you know where" is paved with these good intentions!

Read full article

Are You Interested?

Whether you are a sales manager, business executive or business owner, becoming "interested" is an important component of driving your organization's sales and business development effort. While emphasis is more commonly placed on striving to be "interesting," consider becoming more "interested" and how it influences the various people involved.

Read full article...


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