Sales Strategies

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Shhhhh…Listen!

I met with a woman the other day, named Cynthia Currence.  She happens to be the President Elect of the Georgia Chapter of the Institute of Management Consultants, and a really, really great person.

During this rather brief meeting, where we talked about our perspective businesses and how we could work together, she made it really clear for me that sometimes we are so busy categorizing everything, and putting them into nice, neat little boxes that we don’t take the time to listen.  The funny thing is that it was me that was doing the categorizing and not listening!!

shhhh...listenCynthia mentioned to me that she helps business owners listen, whether listening to their employees, their customers, their vendors or other businesses. What I heard, however, when I reflected back to her, my take was that she is a communications expert.  I did not emphasize the listening part, which was what was important to her…I classified her into the group of people who help two groups of people simply talk to each other.

The funny thing about that is this is the fundamental problem: as a knowledge-based workforce, we are learning to express ourselves rather effectively.  The other part of the equation we are missing is the active listening component – going beyond hearing and reflecting, but rather completely putting away our pre-conceived ideas and backgrounds to open ourselves up to whatever information is being shared with us.

This means that we don’t listen and think of something intelligent to say while the other person is speaking, but rather, seeking to understand that other person.  This was one of those thoughts or statements that makes ones ego vie for attention while scrambling for something intelligent to say.  Yet, this is what we do, day in and day out.  We spend so much time thinking that we forget to listen.

Think about this…how many businesses do you know of that have a turnover rate of >100% per year?  What about organizations that have very few repeat customers?  What about Non Porfits that can’t get their board and their director on the same sheet of music?  What about committees that cannot seem to “get it right” to move anything of any substance forward.

Now the question is: How can listening help your business?

For more information on how Cynthia might help your organization, please visit her at http://www.currenceassociates.com.

At Aepiphanni Business Solutions, we are a Small Business Consulting Firm dedicated to serving the needs of small business owners. We specialize in helping you develop strategies for your organization, and are committed to your success. If you have further questions about creating your strategy or developing your vision, please give me, Rick Meekins, a call at 678-265-3908, or email us at [email protected].
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Economic ReThinking

Here’s a great article from Bob Shelden, author of “When You Become The Boss,” called “Tough times calls for tough training.”  This excellent article has been nominated as one of the Top Ten Sales Articles of the year.  as of this publication, it is in second place, by a narrow margin.  You can check its status here – http://topsalesworld.com/topsalesarticles/; Here’s a quote from the article – a two minute read:

With the downturn in the market, good staff are still surprisingly hard to find, particularly at the operator level. image
A colleague in the hospitality industry, spoke about his challenges:
“Good staff have become rare. Everyone’s competing for the same pool of labour. The young, often with limited education, unskilled and without any career in mind, are just working for a couple of months until they find something they like. Our organisation is understaffed. Sick leave is on the rise, morale is down, productivity and efficiency are low. On top of that, the supervisors are overworked. We are caught in a vicious circle.”

Enjoy the article.  Employ its direction.  Pass it on to friends and colleagues.  If you feel it’s value added, why not let someone know by voting for it – http://topsalesworld.com/topsalesarticles/; I did.

At Aepiphanni Business Solutions, we are a Small Business Consulting Firm dedicated to serving the needs of small business owners. We specialize in helping you develop strategies for your organization, and are committed to your success. If you have further questions about creating your strategy or developing your vision, please give me, Rick Meekins, a call at 678-265-3908, or email us at [email protected].


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Go Forth…and MARKET!!

John Hanth of Duct Tape Marketing produce an excellent blog post called Marketing is Everyone’s Job, where he describes the need to teach everyone in the organization how to be part of the organization’s marketing strategy.  In these tough economic times, in order to move forward, we need to be able to shine in the marketplace, which means that every part of the organization must be aligned with it to help spread its message.clip_image001

Realizing that cost and marketing go hand in hand, having each member of the organization acting as parts of the marketing strategy seems to be more of an investment in time than dollars.  Even looking at it from a productivity standpoint, the investment will be far less than the return, if done properly.

John suggests having periodic marketing meetings with your team to help get the message across and to teach them to live the message, daily.  This in addition to daily reinforcement will help team members to own and live the message you wish to get across to your clients.  Being able to get a clear, consistent message to your target is key to your organization’s success.

Thus said, get your team together and GO FORTH AND MARKET!!

At Aepiphanni Business Solutions, we are a Small Business Consulting Firm dedicated to serving the needs of small business owners. We specialize in helping you develop strategies for your organization, and are committed to your success. If you have further questions about creating your strategy or developing your vision, please give me, Rick Meekins, a call at 678-265-3908, or email us at [email protected].


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The Successful Salesperson

Think about this: what would happen to your business if you shamelessly passed along information that you think would be of value to others as part of your business model?  How do you think you would be seen in the community as you passed more and more info along?  Do you think it would be a positive experience for others?  Do you think that “servant leadership” in the comclip_image002munity can make the whole community thrive?  We’ll have to talk more about that, later, but for your consideration, “None of us is as Strong as All of Us!” ~Kenneth Blanchard.

Inspiration Agents

I had an opportunity, last week, to plug into this great sales program that I must past along.  It was put on by my friends at Inspiration Agents. As you can see below, I enjoyed this so much that I promised I would post a link to an audio version on my website!

Now, if you are sick an tired of missing out on sales opportunities, wasting your time and energies on long sales processes, or are just plane unsure how to get more dollars in the door for your company, this is the seminar to be at.

“I hooked in last evening just as you started to speak so did not announce my name. I wanted to let you know that I did enjoy it and learned and/or re-learned some good stuff!”  – Neil Scott-Barbour, Proteus on Demand Facilities

The Successful Salesperson
We had two great calls on Thursday
CLICK HERE and listen to the recordings. (FREE)
The calls were jam-packed with ideas, systems, and techniques you can use right away to super-charge your sales results!
LISTEN

“Hope you are doing VERY WELL!  That was an EXCELLENT talk you guys gave, yesterday!  Thank you for including me in the invitation.  I hope you are doing a CD or MP3 download of the series; I’d be happy to offer them through my website.” – Rick Meekins, Aepiphanni Business Solutions

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