8 Simple Steps to Building Your Sales Machine

“We are an organic growth company, not an active growth company.”

This is a verbatim quote from a recent client session. While there’s nothing wrong with these words, there is a challenge when relying on “organic” (or passive) growth when you want to double your sales revenue this year.

“Everyone lives by selling something,” according to Robert Louis Stevenson. We are all selling, all the time. We may not see it that way, but we’d benefit by taking a large part of the mystery out of selling. Keep the mystery in place and we don’t meet growth goals. Worse yet, we get into real trouble.

Read more

Stretch Your Thinking to Tighten up Your Results

closeup of a clock about to strike 12:00“There are no unrealistic goals, only unrealistic timeframes.” – Dan Sullivan

The past three months have been full of annual planning sessions in which we review what we accomplished in 2016 and identify what we aim to achieve in 2017, especially in the first quarter.

Many companies had a great year in 2016. Some of the wins were tangible, dollar-driven results, while others were more qualitative. Wrapping up the year is absolutely a time for celebration, and it’s also a great time to reflect on what’s been learned and what lies ahead for 2017.

But not all goals were achieved.

Read more

What’s Wrong with the Company Data You’re Using?

computer screen showing data graphData is key to getting things done. But data is just an indicator, not an objective. It’s our use of data that truly drives results.

“Expert” may be a level of status for which we strive, but many “experts” have a gift for complicating things. Take a recent client conversation, for example.

One team member positioned himself as an expert in data. He created a list of the top 37 data points he felt the company needed to measure. When asked for the weekly goal of each metric, the data expert shared two reasons weekly goals were very difficult to define:

  • Much of the data was very difficult to access
  • The weekly goal would likely change based on several factors

This client has struggled for months to understand what the health of their business was each week.

Read more

Get Rid of Your Job Descriptions

Underwater view of male swimmer in a pool with swim lanesA client reached out recently with the following:

“Stacy and I are planning to have a ‘difficult’ conversation with Joe tomorrow. His performance is leaving a lot to be desired. I suspect he will be surprised. We plan to talk in terms of core values, capabilities and accountabilities, but acknowledge that Stacy and I may have created some of this problem by stepping in and assuming some of his responsibilities (rather than holding him accountable). He may be in the wrong seat and, as we define the seats on the Accountability Chart, he may be better suited for a different role. Did we screw up?”

Read more

Let It Go

For any of us who are parents, the process of “letting go” of our children can be one of the most difficult experiences with which to deal. We’ve birthed them, we’ve fed them, we’ve clothed them, we’ve gotten furious with them, we’ve had compassion for them, we’ve held them in our arms when things got scary or confusing, and celebrated many a success with them. We’ve made an enormous investment of our time, our effort, and our hearts.

But at some point, we have to let them go. They are ready to face the world without us; to create experiences, success, and resolve issues on their own.

As well intended as it might be, if we hold on too long or too tight, they won’t grow.

Read more