Blog Archives

Have A Laugh Fridays – FANTASTICLY Funny Biz Quotes!

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I love this list of quotes that i compiled last year!

It looked as awesome as I remembered it when I first posted.

Enjoy this list and  have a great weekend..

ps did you love that I used the word “Fantasticly” and told the spelling editor to take a hike?

  • How many people on their deathbed wish they’d spent more time at the office? – Stephen R. Covey
  • The problem with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat. – Lilly Tomlin
  • Right now, this is a job. If I advance any higher, this would be my career. And if this were my career, I’d have to throw myself in front of a train. – Jim Halpert/The Office
  • The successful man is the one who finds out what is the matter with his business before his competitors do.  – Roy L. Smith
  • By working faithfully eight hours a day you may eventually get to be boss and work twelve hours a day. – Robert Frost
  • If you break 100, watch your golf. If you break 80, watch your business. – Joey Adams
  • The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary. – Vidal Sassoon
  • Aim low, reach your goals, and avoid disappointment. – Scott Adams/Dilbert
  • “There’s no reason to be the richest man in the cemetery. You can’t do any business from there.” – Colonel Sanders, founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken
  • “Success in almost any field depends more on energy and drive than it does on intelligence. This explains why we have so many stupid leaders.” – Sloan Wilson

The Seven Powers of Words

Great post by Dan this morning! Hope you like it as much as I did. Have an awesome Thursday…

Is It Time To Hit “Reset” With Your Team?

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Managing, coaching and/or leading a team can be a very rewarding role when things are going well. There’s a method to the madness in motivating and inspiring team members. When things don’t go well, the accountability has to fall back on the manager, and tough questions need to be asked. One of the questions that has always intrigued me is,

“Do you know your team members?” (yeah, yeah I do!)

No…

“Do you really KNOW them?”

I heard a story once about a sports star who was allegedly upset that his General Manager did not phone or visit him while he was in the hospital recovering from surgery. This caused a great debate – whether the manager should have had to make personal contact, or if it was satisfactory that his support team did the checking in.

I had a strong opinion on the situation initially, and concluded that the player was another over paid athlete who was whining and wanted a “big hug” from his adoring fans! A radio announcer quickly put it in to perspective for me. He said that although it was ridiculous to expect a General Manager to make calls to a player in the hospital, he needed to know his  players. If all it took to keep a multimillion dollar player happy was an occasional phone call or visit to the hospital, was it really that big a deal? Maybe he only had to do things similarly with a handful of players, but it would have kept harmony within the team. Speculation ensued and the player ended up being let go in a very public dispute.

“The Blind Side” movie provided another great lesson about knowing players.  A high school football coach had an offensive lineman on his team who was having difficulties blocking opposing players. The coach got frustrated, and did not know how to teach the player to block better, and protect the quarterback. The player’s mom was watching that practice, and went on to the field and gave some insight to her son. She knew that he had scored very well on testing at school when the topic was protection. She gave him examples of how he had protected the family and others close to him over time, and how it related to the football team concept.  It really sparked something inside him.

From that point on, he did an incredible job protecting the quarterback. The mom commented to the coach that he needed to know his players better. Every time the player struggled and was not blocking as well in the future, they just had to remind him again that this was his “football family” and he needed to protect them too!

In today’s business environment, now more than ever, Sales Managers and Executives need to understand the strengths, weaknesses, and tendencies of each of their team members. In the sales profession, some reps will be better at presenting, others will have more technical knowledge, and some will be customer relationship building standouts.

Work your butt off to understand the different personalities that you are managing, and adjust your style when  dealing with each of them . Focus on assisting them in areas of weakness, and capitalize on their strengths. Well-rounded reps will be much more successful on your teams in the long run than those who are one-dimensional.

Managers need to be prepared to change-up their leadership strategies based on their team member’s needs. If your team genuinely knows that your number one priority is their success, life at work should already be good if not great. If things aren’t going well with your team, ask yourself:

  • How well do I know each individual?
    • What motivates them day-to-day?
    • What are their long-term goals?
  • What can I do to get to know each person better?
  • How can I further their career development? (i.e. one-on-one coaching, encouraging continued education, job shadowing, mentoring)

Taking time to get to know your employees gives you valuable insight into leading your team effectively. Happy employees are more productive which is a win-win for everyone.

When Is The Last Time You…..

  1. said thank you to a customer for their business or got “wild and crazy” and hand wrote them a thank you card?
  2. helped a co-worker just ‘cuz?
  3. read a book or listened to an audio book in your chosen career path to help take your game to the next level?
  4. grabbed coffee for your inside sales or other support people or took them for lunch?
  5. made a co-worker laugh when they were having a bad day?
  6. told somebody “fantastic job!”
  7. took a real lunch break to relax and recharge for the rest of the day?
  8. emailed a colleague or friend a podcast, blog or article that you found helpful
  9. really listened to somebody when they were talking to you?
  10. planned a really fun vacation to get away from it all?

10 friendly reminders as your week starts to wind down!

I would be flattered if you used this as a checklist to help motivate yourself to do things that you wouldn’t normally do.

Keep me posted on your progress and good luck!

Do You Have “It”?

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All I wanted to do early in my sales career was manage the team that I was working on. I was young, I was new to the industry and I thought I knew it all! I was confident that some day I could handle the role. Unfortunately changes happened within the company, and I turned down my dream Sales Manager role when it was finally offered to me. Even with that setback, I have continued to follow sales and executive management throughout my career.

I did have some experience managing a team before I was ever interested in Sales Management. I was a Branch Manager in the car rental industry straight out of university. It was a great experience, and certainly taught me a lot about managing a diverse group of associates at a young age. Some of the employees were more than ten years my senior, and I learned very quickly how difficult being in charge could be.

The Sales Manager is arguably the most important person within the organization. They have a direct line of communication with the sales force; the associates who drive most of the front line revenue.

It can be very easy to get in to a rut with your day-to-day role. Sales reps certainly do, and it happens to managers as well. It is valuable to take a step back and think outside the box sometimes, from how you typically manage.

Great sales managers use enthusiasm and excitement to their advantage. They celebrate their team’s wins, while proudly announcing personal and team achievements. They may high-five team members in the office, or keep it simple and just pat everyone on the back when there are reasons to celebrate. The positive energy does wonders for everyone.

I have always been keenly aware of my manager’s actions, and I focus on a few areas:

  • how they lead the team
  • how they treat me
  • how they treat other reps
  • how they handle adversity within the team
  • the relationship they have with their immediate supervisor and others on the executive management team

If they excel in all the above areas, they probably have “it” with their team. “It” is hard to explain, but it can be summarized as the group is firing on all cylinders, and no issue is too great to break the cohesiveness within the group.

I have reported to a total of 16 assistant managers, sales managers and branch managers during my career. I have also had close working relationships with 12-13 executive managers. This has provided me a rich foundation of experiences.

  • As a manager what is it like to have “it”with the group of reps that you lead every day?
    • If you have “it”, you can probably describe “it” in general terms, but it may be hard to explain overall.
  • If you have never had “it” with your team, would you not like to know how to get “it”?

As I continue to discuss Sales Management in the future, I will build on the theme of having “it”. I will leave you with one other thought to ponder….

Are you just a boss to a group of employees, or is their much more depth to your relationship with the team?