11 Concepts for Managing Sales During Times of Change
From Founder & Chief Learning Officer, Tony Cole
Remember your first day on the job? What were you doing? What was your attitude and how did you approach your new responsibilities? How did you interact with your new co-workers? Suppose the world turned and the next day, you were working in a completely different environment. How did you respond? Did you adapt and improve or resist the changes? Here are 11 concepts to help you evolve and adapt and continue selling or managing a sales team.
Concept #1 – Commitment is a gift you should give to yourself.
- What are you committed to?
- If you are not committed to doing whatever it takes to succeed and increase sales, then you must:
- Set personal goals that are non-negotiable
- Have a vision of where you want to go (and where you want to end up)
- Failure to do these things will lead to failure to fully commit
Concept #2 – Senior management must empower all others to think like a CEO. If senior management can accomplish this, then non-managers will think and act like they are CEOS; looking out for the entire company, and not only for themselves.
- Support people to make decisions
- Train them on how to make decisions
- If bad decisions are made, it is because of the following:
- Leadership hired the wrong people
- Failure to communicate well
- Failure to train on decision-making
Concept #3 – The use of technology:
- You must use it and demand it of yourself and your team!
- If you have people that have a belief that ‘You can’t teach old dogs new tricks’, get those people off of your stage
Concept #4 – Flexible thinking and changing beliefs are critical. There are some truths that you will have to accept.
- Life isn’t fair!
- Life isn’t fair!
- Life isn’t fair!
Concept #5 – Companies are curious.
- How can you increase my top line?
- How can you add to the bottom line?
- How will you prove it via accountability to measurable achievements?
Achieve Sales Growth During Uncertain Times
Concept #6 – Your company will be asking, “Why should I keep you”? You must demonstrate that:
- You are a good employee
- You work hard
- You get things done
- You are capable of learning
- You have experience that is valuable to YOU and to the future of the company
Concept #7 – Lifetime learning:
- Information doubles every 5 years
- Power and speed of the microchip doubles every 18 months (Moore’s law)
- The cost of computing drops roughly 30% every year while working faster and better
- Are you twice as smart today as you were 5 years ago?
- Have you doubled your capacity in the last 18 months?
- What are you doing today to be twice as smart in 18 months?
- How much are you costing the company? Are you a better “buy”
Concept #8 – Job security:
- The ability to initiate new relationships
- Being able to create and sell creative solutions to qualified buyers
- Your ability to facilitate decisions to buy from you
Concept #9 – Make sure you contribute more value than you cost
- The company’s perception about contribution vs cost is the reality
- You are not entitled
- Prove your worth
- If you consider leaving, would the company do whatever it takes to keep you?
- How is your value measured by the company?
- How is your cost measured?
- The value of every company is outside the company (The marketplace) what are you doing to bring that value into the company?
Concept #9 – Serving others:
- What does it take to please them (everyone in your sphere is a “them”)
- How can you contribute to the success of others?
- The person at the next desk, down the hall on another floor; make no mistake they are your clients and customers.
- The “Best Bargain” is based on the value you bring. The consumer will seek and find the best bargain. They will either get it from you or from someone else.
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Concept #10 – Ownership / Responsibility / Accountability:
- You are responsible for your attitude
- Philosophy > Attitude > Behavior
Concept #11 – Be a fixer, not a problem creator:
- Create or find solutions vs. announce and identify problems
- Base conversations and actions on principles rather than your own personal position
- Focus on getting outcomes instead of creating rules regulations and procedures.
Consider This: Who are you holding captive for your success, you, or your employer?
How appropriate are these concepts today? Every one of these thoughts, ideas, and action items can and will help you lead yourself and others through challenging times.
What I think you might find interesting is that these notes are a result of a book I read by Pritchett and Associates titled: The Employee Handbook of NEW WORK HABITS FOR A RADICALLY CHANGING WORLD.
Price Pritchett does a great job of outlining 13 ground rules for job success in the information age. The booklet was written in 1994! However, the principles and ideas make as much sense today as they did back then. Some of the technical data might be a bit off given the advancement of the IT science but if anything, the technology has gotten smarter and faster due to big data capabilities.
Consider this: “You think you understand the situations, but what you don’t understand is the situation has changed.” Putnam Investment advertisement