Delegate sales duties to help business, and employees, grow and prosper

Don’t think the better customers trust anyone but us. It’s our fault. We’ve created our own problem. Few of our employees deal with clients. We wanted to be sure customers could get the answers they needed right from the horse’s mouth – us. We also wanted to be sure that customers wouldn’t follow a departing employee. And, of course, no one can do pricing except us. But now we’re bogged down. We’re not growing the way we used to. And we can’t take time off the way we’d like.

Thoughts of the Day: Sales, like every other part of the business, benefits from a team approach. Practice by working together to accomplish group goals. Train employees to handle prospects and customers correctly.

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Communicate clearly through your marketing plan

We don’t know who we should be marketing to or how. We definitely don’t have a plan of attack. Looking for suggestions.

Thoughts of the day: Start by reading about what goes into making a good marketing plan. Define what makes your company stand out. Take a good hard look at who wants what you have to offer. Jump in by picking a few marketing efforts to focus on, but have a context into which those fit.

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Make your business unique

We need a differentiator; as an industry we’re being commoditized. We won’t be able to stay in business forever unless things change.

Thoughts of the day: Offering something unique boosts profitability and chances for survival in any small business. Avoid price wars. Turn away some buyers in order to create value. Don’t get complacent. Be nimble.

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Sell things for what they’re worth

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Our salesperson likes to discount things, especially add-on services, which are a really big profit margin for us. He’s even told some clients we would do it at cost. We need to fix this now because he’s starting to make headway in sales. Bigger accounts are coming in and we could end up losing a lot of profits.

Thoughts of the day: How much does your salesperson know about how your business makes a profit? Is your salesperson calling on the right class of customers? Equip your salesperson with an effective information-gathering approach. Check that everyone is clear on what the goals are. Use reporting to evaluate and learn from results. Make sure there’s a plan to get more referral business from the best customers.

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Prioritize the workload and distribute it fairly

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At certain times of the year, the people in the field aren’t working as much as we would like them to be. When things pick up, we find certain people who are doing a lot more than others. This has to be addressed, but we’re not sure how to fix it.

Thoughts of the day… Who is in charge of distributing the workload? What projects can get accomplished in slow times? What’s the reward for showing initiative? Make sure everyone understands what has to happen to make the company productive and profitable.

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