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Thought for the Week 2-28-10

Posted on February 28, 2010 under Thoughts for the Week.

 ”Success is not the result of spontaneous combustion.  You must first set yourself on fire.”    -Reggie Leach

 Sales Reminders 132-145

  • If you aren’t careful, you can ruin today worrying  about tomorrow.
  • Dress for success (no, I’m not kidding with this one – check the mirror in the morning)
  • Don’t forget your ‘thank you’ notes
  • If you’re still using power point, for goodness sake, keep those slides lean and full of meaning
  • When talking with customers, always use “we”
  • Don’t work with people who don’t keep their word; there is such a thing as bad business.
  • Exceed your own expectations today.
  • Always be especially nice to receptionists and secretaries.
  • Use 80% of your time taking care of your existing clients; 20% looking for new ones;  remember, it’s harder to keep an account than it is to get one
  • Google yourself
  • How long has it been since you’ve had lunch with each of your top clients?
  • Read another book on selling (I’m assuming you’ve already got 2 behind you for 2010)
  • Listen to your voice mail message; would you call you back?

 

Have a great week and go sell something.


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How’s the attitude today?

Posted on February 22, 2010 under Attitude Adjusters.

Happiness is an attitude.  We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong.  The amount of work is the same.  -Francesca Reigler

You do get to choose.


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Thought for the Week 2-21-10

Posted on February 21, 2010 under Thoughts for the Week.

You are your own brand and your face is the face of the brand.   Make that face positive, brave, happy and smile.  A Chinese proverb says it even better:  “A man without a smiling face must not open a shop.”

Sales Reminders 123-131

  • Create a lead sharing breakfast group:  lawyer, marketing pro, architect, rep from another industry, etc.
  • Remember:  order takers are extinct
  • If there is a reason to question the ethics of a decision, you already know the answer
  • Learn something new today
  • Pay it forward.
  • Make volunteering a part of your week
  • Be special or be forgotten
  • Blame no one.

Final Thoughts – Vancouver 2010 -  Olympic Level Selling

Despite the commercialism that has crept into amateur athletics over the years, to me, the Olympics still embody everything that is good about sports:  dedication, team work, persistence, goal setting, sacrifice, hard work, winning with class, losing with class, etc.

And, I must confess, I still get a lump in my throat every time the National Anthem is played.

Did you ever stop and think about how many hours Evan Lysacek, Lindsay Vonn, or Shaun White  have practiced in their lifetimes?  Odds are they didn’t decide last summer that they wanted to win Olympic gold.

There is a fascinating book out that I would encourage everyone to add to their sales library:  Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell (he also wrote Blink).

In Chapter Two he quotes neurologist Dr. Daniel Levitin:  “ten thousand hours of practice is required to achieve the level of mastery associated with being a world class expert – in anything.”  “In study after study of composers, basketball players, fiction writers, ice skaters, chess players, composers, concert pianist, master criminals, and what have you, this number comes up again and again.”

Gladwell goes on to give other examples:  the Beatles, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and shares this observation from John Lennon:  “the more we practiced, the better we got.”

So where does that leave us in our quest to master the art of selling?  Are any of us approaching 10,000 hours yet?

Prospecting, listening, presenting, networking, asking the right questions, professional persistence — are we already as good as we can get?   Or, can we raise the bar, try to bring more value to our clients and begin to live and work outside our comfort zones?

So as you go into tomorrow, remember the Rule of One:  make one more call, learn one more thing, swim one more lap, hand write one more thank-you card, read one more page, practice your elevator speech one more time, add one more customer to your pipeline, find one more client’s PAIN, research one more prospect on the Internet, and eat one more carrot.

Have a great week and go sell something.


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Mid-Week Adjuster:

Posted on February 17, 2010 under Attitude Adjusters.

Every day may not be good, but there’s something good in every day!


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Old Zen “attitude adjuster”…

Posted on February 15, 2010 under Attitude Adjusters.

“After my house burned down, I saw the moon more clearly.”


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Peter Drucker wrote:

Posted on February 14, 2010 under From the Web.

“my ancestors were printers in Amsterdam from 1510 to 1750 and during that entire time, they didn’t have to learn anything new.” (Drucker means ‘printer’ in Dutch).

And now?

“Knowledge becomes obsolete incredibly fast,” Drucker argues. “The continuing professional education of adults will be the #1 growth industry for the next 50 years.”

His thoughts just serve to reinforce a point I make constantly to my corporate and individual clients: the need for ongoing, continuous training (perpetual growth and improvement) has never been greater.


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Thought(s) for the Week 2-14-10

Posted on under Thoughts for the Week.

Sales Reminders 114-122

  • Believe in yourself; if you won’t, who will?
  • Make that extra call at 4:30PM
  • Read Living Above the Level of Mediocrity
  • Your chances for success increase in direct proportion to the number of sales calls you make.
  • Invest in your career.
  • Know your clients hobbies
  • Don’t give away the farm and smile more!
  • Your sales career is not going to move forward real well with one foot on the brake and the other on the gas; just do it!

Final Thoughts (the one below from Mr. Twain, the rest from me)

“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you too can become great.”

Make it a great week, pay it forward, learn from your mistakes (and let ‘em go), enjoy today (it’s a gift remember), make good decisions, and think about this as you roll into Monday: we tend to become what the most important person in our life thinks we will become.


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How’s the attitude today? 2-13-10

Posted on February 13, 2010 under Attitude Adjusters.

There is no room for self doubt in sales; you must believe in you.


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It’s All About Attitude 2-11-10

Posted on February 11, 2010 under Attitude Adjusters, Thoughts for the Week.

You become what you think about all day long.


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Thoughts for the Week of 2/8/10

Posted on February 8, 2010 under From the Web, Thoughts for the Week.

Sales Reminder 113 – “You Were Raised Better Than That!”

[originally published @ CANVAS Magazine]

This past Holiday Season, I finally drew a line in my family’s sand: if you are old enough to go to school, feed yourself, be responsible for your personal hygiene, and access Face Book, you’re old enough to say ‘thank you’.

And I don’t mean a phone call (although that would be my second choice), an email, or a text message. I mean a genuine hand written thank you card.

No more IPODs, train sets, or gift cards that go unacknowledged. No more of those special die cut graduation envelopes (the ones that when the inserting is done properly feature a picture of one of our Presidents) that for all you know got lost in the mail. No more, no more, no more.

There’s a life skills lesson to be learned here and I guess I’m going to be my family’s teacher.

How about you Mr./Ms. Professional Sales Person? Are you on board here?

How many ‘thank you’ cards did you send out last month? Did you get one to:

  • Your CSR for staying until the middle of the night to check some proofs?
  • Your best customer for his loyalty and friendship and business?
  • Your estimator who turns things around in less than a hour?
  • Your new customer for that first order?
  • That outside supplier who ‘saved your bacon’ on a rush job?
  • The buyer who took time out of her day to learn more about why she should do business with you?
  • Your neighbor who watched your kids because you had a press okay?


If there is an easier way to show creativity, sincerity, and humor, I don’t know what it would be. If there is a faster way to set yourself apart from the masses, I don’t know what it is (everyone can find five minutes).

By the way if you take my advice and decide to make this a part of your weekly prospecting plan, here are some ‘thank you’ card pointers:

  • write legibly (duh!)
  • spell correctly (remember what a dictionary is for?)
  • use a quality card stock (think Crane’s)
  • before you write, practice writing a line several times (we don’t write much anymore)
  • sign it with your first name only
  • if possible, mail your card to the recipient’s home address


Thanks; make it a great month and always try to remind yourself that the daily implementation of the ‘Rule of One’: (one more call, one more quote letter, one more task, one more lap around the track, one more serving of vegetables, one more thank you note, up one hour earlier) can make all the difference in your world.

Final Thoughts

Having discipline shouldn’t be a chore!  As William Feather so aptly said “if we don’t discipline ourselves, the world will do it for us.”  Here are some keys to self discipline: 

  • have a plan and work it;
  • whenever possible ‘just do it’;
  • train yourself to be a better manager of your time;
  • within reason, make decisions quickly;
  • know your strengths and build on them;
  • know your weaknesses and get better;
  • always see to be better today than yesterday.

Make it a great week, pay it forward,  and consider keeping track of how many times a day you check your email; try checking it less frequently and see if it doesn’t save you some time without jeopardizing your sales efforts.


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