They hand out complements like manhole covers here….

I was listening to a Sandler Sales podcast on how to manage your sales team. All too often all al that employees get at a review or one on one is a laundry list of that they are doing wrong. Ugh been on the receiving end of that myself. One company I worked for as a Customer Support person, was to say the least challenging. My first day there the VP of the department had me in their office. They said: There’s people out back making things, there are people in the field selling things, then there’s you, you are just overhead. With that inspiring speech I started my job.

About a year later one of the sales team members took me on a ride a long. He quipped that they hand out complements around here like are manhole covers. Considering they weigh 75 lbs each, they aren’t all that easy to hand out. We agreed that if you get things right you get left alone, get one thing wrong and that is all you will hear about. Well you can imagine how loyal folks were, and how that was reflected in product quality. It took some years but eventually the birds came home to roost and they are gone.

This was an important lesson I learned. As I think Jim Rohn said you can learn from successful people and you can learn from unsuccessful people. Imitate the Successful Experts and learn what not to do from the unsuccessful people. Later in my career I noticed a project was drifting towards failure. I took action, got buy in from the VP I reported to and then grabbed the bull by the horns. I took the time to meet with folks individually and formulate a plan to get the project on track without blame. One key thing I did was drive from the HQ Office to the Factory for our weekly meetings. My secret weapon was complementing even the smallest progress, that and brining Doughnuts and Bagels to every meeting. Then I championed their needs with Sr. Management back at HQ. Then shared the credit with the team. We got the project done on time and that lead to a very successful product launch.

The podcast said you have to build trust and credibility before you can provide constructive feedback. One of the key things I learned from the podcast was to complement 5 times more than you suggest corrections. A one to five or more ratio will make it more likely that the person will accept your recommendations. Next they said track it, yes track the number of Complements you give every day. Then set a goal to increase it. If you measure goals they tend to happen, if you don’t they don’t.

Complements can be light as a feather, they cost nothing and are highly valued by the receiver.

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It’s The First Work Day of The Year Got Goals ?

It’s dawn on the first work day of the year as I write this post. I remember my Sandler Sales Training Coach saying you are working on part of your goals or someone else goals. Maybe that other person has our needs in mind, maybe not. It is not too late to set some goals and get focused. One big reason people don’t set goals is fear. Because if you set a goal you can fail by not accomplishing it. Fear not even a partly achieved goal is a success, it is often accomplishing more than if you had not set a goal.

Some folks set huge goals partly or fully accomplish them and feel better about it. Others set goals and have to achieve or over achieve them. When it coms to goal setting learn what works for you. Early on in your goal setting it often makes sense to set very achievable goals and hit them. Nothing succeeds like success, gather up a series of personal victories. It is also ok to have big goals that are never achieved, like personal development, spiritual development, etc.

I started out because of an audio recording by Brian Tracy on success and how to achieve it. He said once you put your goals on paper your brain gets to working on achieving them. He quoted Napoleon Hill “Anything them mind can conceive and believe you can achieve” I wrote three goals on a scrap of paper. Kept that scrap on my counter where I would see it every day. I achieved those goal, and now many years later I still have that scrap of paper and take inspiration from it.

Another lesson I learned from Brian Tracy is to make a list of Frogs to Eat each day. No not real frogs, it is a metaphor referring to an old Russian Saying. “If you eat a frog first thing in the morning, the rest of your day will be better”. Do the hard thing you don’t feel like doing right away and the rest of the day becomes easy. Like me writing the blog post at dawn. Here are a few resources:

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Plan Next Year NOW…!

Well I meant to write this post back on Oct 1st, but got distracted and procrastinated till now. Sorry My Fault. There is an old Chinese saying: The best time to plant an orchard was 20 years ago, the next best time is now. The best time to make a plan was in the past, the next best time is NOW. It is a great time to make your plans for next year, while we are not caught up in the hustle & bustle, emotions of the holidays and year end. We have time to calmly think out what we want to achieve.

I saw a post on Linkedin that realty sums it up, don’t know who said it: “A DREAM, written down with a due date becomes a GOAL. A Goal broken down into steps becomes a PLAN. A plan backed by ACTION becomes REALITY.”

I would add due dates for the steps and daily, weekly, month actions. To quote Robbin Sharma “Each Day is Our Life Lived in Miniature.” Find some way to further your goals by daily actions, or some weekly action. It depends on the Goals, some are better suited to Daily Actions others Weekly. I find monthly well too long and easy to forget till the end of the month, then I am scrambling to get them done. But you have to find out what works for you. My friend Chris Jennings always said “I am a big fan of success, if what you are doing is working keep doing it.”

I follow Ken Fisher on twitter, last year he posted a question asking how many people had written goals for the year. Not sure how many people responded but it must have been darn few, because he responded to me personally, saying “That puts you way, way ahead of other people”. Dave Ramsey said that you don’t become wealthy by accident. I would say the same thing about any form of success it does not happen without two things: 1. Clear intent and planning 2. A lot of Hard Work over a extended period often years.

Well now is the time to take action, pick up your iPad, iPhone, laptop, even pen & paper and make your plans for next year, next 10 year or for the rest of your life. Fail to plan and you have planed to fail. Good luck. in a new tab)

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Sales in the Post Covid World

I am a podcast, cd, mp3 junkie. Zig Ziglar famous sales evangelist of recent past, his style was modeled on that of a preacher. Said Go to “Automobile University” play tapes (& later CDs )while you are driving from one Sales Call to the next. He said keep on learning, because listening to music or talk radio is costing you money. How true.

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Since most of us now work form home we have to adapt. For me every day at 5:00AM I get out and exercise for an hour plus. This is now my “Exercise University”. This morning the Sandler Sales Podcast had a great session on selling in a hybrid world. Link below:

The gist of the podcast is that we have to adapt and use several methods of communication and create a new sales model that works for us. Using modern tech to keep in touch with our customers, such as a CRM, text, phone, emails etc.

The episode covers:

  • What is the best attitude, behavior, and technique on how to succeed at selling in a hybrid world
  • Decide what will be done digitally and what won’t
  • How to be a helper
  • How to contact prospects multiple times in multiple ways
  • Spend your time with the Prospect Listening, don’t talk
  • Sitting is the new smoking, sit less
  • Prep and debrief every call call
  • Don’t stack Phone Call Blocks and Zoom calls without prep and debrief time in between




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12 Steps to Lifetime Failure, and how to Avoid Them

  1. Spend more than your earn then borrow more. Sounds crazy yet that is what many folks do, go to college take out a huge loan for a degree that will result in career with mediocre pay. Better yet to to an expensive school and do the same. Solotion: Live on Less than you earn, don’t borrow unless you absolutely have to.
  2. Just spend as you go, spend on impulse don’t bother with a budget and avoid a keeping track of your spending let your credit balance be a surprise at the end of the month! Solution: Have a Written Budget every month, each dollar has a name and a place it is going to loosely quote Dave Ramsey.
  3. Rack up the debt, use credit cards balance transfers to pay off other credit cards then get more credit cards along with a car loan you can’t afford or better yet Lease an expensive vehicle. Solution: Save your money to pay for what you need, have a car replacement fund. Get Out of Debt or better yet Stay out of Dept.
  4. Do Not Save Any Money for a rainy day, retirement, your next car, a down payment on a home. Many working folks don’t have enough saved to deal with a $1,000 sunrise problem – expense. Solution: Learn to Save and Invest. Delay gratification & Spending until you can pay cash for most things.
  5. Be a cheapskate, spend on yourself only never give to charity. Solution: Generosity is beautiful and there is a high correlation between success and generosity people help generous people they are more likable.
  6. Hang around losers, people who spend carelessly, live messy lives and are always broke & unsuccessful. Better yet take their advice on how to get rich quick. Soloution: Invest in Quality Relationships “It is hard to soar with Eagles when you are stuck on the ground scratching with Turkeys…. S. You are the sum of the people who you hang around with . You become who you hang around with.” according to Brian Tracy.
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7. Drop. our of High School. Solution: Graduate High School every neighborhood has one, stay in school and graduate

8. Become a parent as soon as you are able. Solution: Get married before you have children, both you and your children will be better off.

9. Pay no attention to your money, stay ignorant about how to handle money, and take advice from broke people. Solution: Learn about money, learn about how to create a budget, never stop learning.

10. Expect others to take care of you: the governement, your parents, relative and friends as long as you can. Solution: Get a Job any job as soon as you are legally allowed to work.

11. Ignore the rules of Society especially the Law. Solution: Stay out of the Criminal Justice System once you get in this loop it is hard to get out and stay out.

12. Abuse legal & illegal drugs, this is the fastest way to the bottom, and one of the hardest holes to climb out of. Solution: Stay clean & sober, don’t even dabble in Drugs, especially if your family has a history of Alcohol & Drug abuse, there appears to be a genetic component

Don’t be afraid to seek help there is plenty out there. Dave Ramsey has a great series of videos on YouTube. or Dave

How I learned to be Good with Money – Dave Ramsey 1/10/2018

XACTLY What We Teach – Dave Rant Oct 8 2015

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Will Sales and Marketing go back to Normal in 2021 and Beyond ?

We have a steady roll out of vaccines. The number of those inoculated rising, Covid cases declining, is normal in sight? Every Sales & Marketing person I speak with is asking the same thing. If not normal what will the future look like?

First the Good News, according to a recent webinar hosted by Fisher Investments the economy is stronger than most people think it is. As the vaccine is given to ever greater numbers of people the economy will rebound. They feel that despite volitility it is likely 2021 will be a good year for both the economy and stocks. The big beneficiaries will continue to be Tech Companies.

So good so far. A good economy is good for selling & marketing. How will sales & marketing be different? I believe that Business Travel will be down significantly and will stay down. Prospects & Customers have learned to buy remotely. The big question is have You learned to sell that way? See the Sandler Sales Pod Cast “How to Succeed at Video Selling” at the end of this article for some tips. The Economics Explained Vid at the bottom of this article suggests that Business Travel may be down 40%. As Corporations have managed to sell without travel, ask yourself why go back ? Travel is time consuming, expensive and limited in scope. In one web meeting any number of prospects can be sold. There are few of the limits and conflicting schedules, that travel brings, not to speak of jet lag. There is hidden savings as well, you are not limited to hiring sales people in a particular geography ie high cost markets like San Francisco, New York, London, Tokyo etc.

I was having a conversation with a Colleague in Europe about this topic, he shared an example of how his company is adapting. They manufacture sophisticated machines used to make electronics. A machine in Asia broke down and due to the lock down sending a Technician was impossible. In a moment of inspiration the Techs on both ends got Virtual Reality Goggles VR. The Tech on the European end walked the Tech in Asia through the process and got their machine fixed. Virtual Reality Tech has been commonly available for some years now, yet it took a crisis and creative thinking to push adoption. Ask yourself do you think management will take a serious look at the cost of VR vrs Travel? A trip to Asia from Europe is pushing nearly $10,000 when all is said and done.


I believe that Sales & Marketing has changed and will not return to “Normal”. Many workers will resist going back to the office to work. This will have a major impact on Sales & Marketing. The only way to get all of the decision makers in one room will be a Zoom Room. You probably won’t be doing walk ins, road trips, trade shows as much as in the past. Invest in the future. Set up a home studio, with a good camera, a great mike and put a lock on the door. Get your best list up and running on your CRM and get to it.

How to Succeed at Video Selling

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“Giving Powerful Virtual Presentations” Webinar Notes

Recienlty I attended the “Giving Powerful Virtual Presentations” Webinar by Sander Sales ( hosted by VP Mike Montegue. He said we are all struggling with trying to get business done while attending endless online meetings. It is one thing to attend one, presenting one it is a whole different animal. This presentation was a huge help to me on ways to improve my online presentations. The is the link to the full presentation is at the end of this artical. Here is are my key notes.

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If you are using the camera on your laptop make sure it is at eye level, no one wants to look up your nose or down on to the top of your head – shiny bald spot for us guys. Tip: Try your camera in advance to see you you look and watch yourself in the window as you present. Tip: Clothing with Solid Colors are better than patterns and match your clothing to how you look best with your lighting. Good bright lighting helps.

Look directly at and talk to the camera as if you are talking to the person on the other end. Have your notes just above or just below the camera it you need them. Tip: Put a sticker note with a Smiley Face or arrow saying look here.

Prep a lot up front, and Prepare a lot up front…! Then Prepare again. Tip: Rehearse with a trusted partner.

Bring up any potential tech issues at the start of the presentation, like potential bandwidth issues. Better yet upgrade your equipment and bandwidth. Spend more money on tech than you do parking a the airport. Tip: Wired cat 5 cable is faster than wifi.

Set up your office so it has a back drop or a background that looks professional and is Not a distraction. Tip: Some folks use virtual backgrounds , for example a Google image of the prospects front office lobby or building. Good lighting is almost as important as a good camera

Remember 38% of your message is Audio have a good headset or mike they aren’t all that expensive. Background noise Always Sounds Louder not the other end. Tip: Ask how your audio sounds on a scale of 1-10 anything less than 9 means you need to upgrade.

When using Slides less is better, like a Comic strip just the headline you fill in the rest with your presentation. Tip: Use simple Images usually one per slide

Large text remember some folks are watching it on a phone screen…! Tip: the older the audience the larger the text should be.

Put Boom in your Zoom, not death by PowerPoint. Engage your audience, Tip: get them talking interacting using emoji, polls, open ended discussion, etc

By the last 10% of your presentation you start setting the stage for landing the plane, that is the Decision step, Post Sell. and Define Next Steps. Tip: if you end without a clear next step like send over a contract and let’s get started, or scheduled a meeting with a clear agenda to procede. You made poor use of your time.

A Big Thanks to Sandler Sales for this Free Webinar on how to Improve your selling using online meetings.

Webinar Link: Here is the link to the full presentation: http://Here is the link to the full presentation:

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Are YOU the Fire Fighter or Arsonist

I was reading an article on the web about a Former CEO Of Multi Billion Dollar Global Corp. who remarked about always having to put out fires. That sparked a memory of my Business Coach telling me if you are Always Putting Out Fires You are the Arsonist. Some people like the excitement of the crisis and being the fire fighter. Yet it is hardly the way to run your career much less a business. It also brings to mind what the Famous Management Consultant Peter Drucker said: A well run factory is boring it just ticks along like a fine watch, on the other hand a poorly run factory is all full of smoke and people running around putting out fires. Yet some companies reward the heroics of fire fighters and ignore the smooth running watch. Guess which one is more profitable.

Are you the Fire Fighter or the Arsonist ?

In our own lives and business we can if we take the time to take an honest look at most crisis situations say that they could often have been prevented. One wag told me: Proper, prior, planing, prevents, pitifully, poor, performance. We can’t predict when we will get a flat tire but we can make sure we have a spare tire and that it is full of air and/or have AAA as a backup. Avoid doing, before planning, don’t be in such a rush to start that you won’t have what you need when you get there. Yes plans need to be flexible, 2020 and 2021 have been ample proof of that.

Back to the CEO well his situation turned out much like you would expect when tough times hit in 2008 his company wasn’t ready. A once great company nearly collapsed and was wounded such that it is still many years away from full recovery. Fires are more easy prevented than put out. My Sales Training Coach Chris Jennings explained to me the universal law of problems “Problems start small and grow with time and accrue interest, becoming Big Problems. Thanks Chris wise advice that has helped me stay on the right side of the trouble line.

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Sales Teams Adapting to 2021 And Beyond

I was reading a research report by Sandler Sales (Link at end of article). Note that: All of the data & results in this article came from that report. It should be not surprise that folks that had adopted Technology Like Zoom, WebEx and Salesforce CRM before Covid Virus hit and lock downs began did a lot better than those that hadn’t. Playing catchup was a very hard game to play, everything was and in some cases still in short supply, web cams, laptops, technology folks to implement the software. Many folks have found Soloutions to these challenges. Roughly 68% invested in technology to improve selling, with 74% focusing on improving the Sales Process. The next area where people are struggling with people management. Yet only 32% had received training on how to manage people remotely.

According to the survey conducted by Sandler Sales 71% changed their sales process, 77% reported competitive landscape changed, 82% saw an increased commitment to client retention Managing people changed dramatically those have been successful chose the approach of coaching people towards personal development. Those that chose a remedial approach were not so successful. The good news is that about 57% of sales people had been given some new training on how to sell remotely.

The three top areas of coaching are in order: 1. Sales Process, 2. Sales Pipline 3. Sales Calls. I strongly agree with that order of priority. When you have a Sales Process you can measure it and identify where you are doing well and where you need to improve. Versus using a bag of sales tricks. The Sandler Sales Model is one of the best in my opinion. A Sales Pipeline preferably in your CRM keeps the focus on the best Opportunities. Last tracking Sales Calls and the techniques you use is where the rubber meets the road.

When it comes to CRM Technology 50% saw some improvement in use, and 11% saw a considerable improvement in use. With 38% showing no improvement in use. I don’t suppose any of my readers are among the 38% who saw no improvement, on the off chance that is your situation you may want to contact me.

Link to the full report:

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Create A Better Salesforce CRM User Experience

Alphabetical Pick lists make logical sense to the Salesforce Tech creating them, but are very annoying to users when you have to scroll through 140 country from Arminia to Azabijan etc for a Domestic Company? If you only do business in the USA, Canada and Mexico put them at the top then the rest of the world after than in alphabetical order. Do a Quick analysis of your top 10 customers and rank the 10 Countries from most to least then the rest alphabetical. Or If you are a N. America Co. list USA, Canada, Mexico and Other, when Other is selected a Text Box appears for them to type in their country name.

Non-sense pick lists, Limited options, Options that don’t Make sense, have choices that are too similar, or no option for “Other” and a blank space for me to type what Other Means. Here is an example of a well done list that probably uses the IP address to default to United States. Great Job Danaher..!

Also when United States is selected the State pick list appears, nice touch. Some folks use Zip Code but Zip Codes are not exclusive to one state. They also selected the country code for your phone number based on your country selection, nice touch.

Ask them your team how they use pick lists your page layouts I often get some good suggestions. What are their top 10 picks in order of importance (or do a report and rank them yourself)

Are the sections of the page they use most often grouped ? or do they have to do screen gymnastics to get from field to field by scrolling all over hells half acer ? Most often used stuff top Left, Then along the top and down the left hand side ie. in the shape of an “F”

Watch your team enter data, watch your users and how they interact with salesforce. Are they picking up a calculator to do calculations? Put that math into your fields, let the software do the work. If a user struggles and or gets it wrong it Fix it You Created it WRONG…!.

To paraphrase Henry Ford Don’t make faster horses, rather than mimic what they are doing now, automate it.

Automate repetitive Routine Tasks, if you regularly assign a series of tasks use the Action Plans automation in Salesforce it will Assign a series of tasks to a variety of people, groups and Ques at the press of a button. Better yet create process that can be automated using the Process Builder or the Flow Builder.

On the off chance any of this is of interest it may be worth a quick conversation, feel free to call Phil at 949-636-5286

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