Salvaging a Sales Person Who Is Struggling

We have a person who is helping us with sales. He’s opening a lot of doors, but not closing much. We like this person a lot and would like to see him succeed. What should we do?

Thoughts of the Day: Sales is a multi-disciplined job. Look for bad habits that are getting in the way. Consider if fears are holding your sales person back. Think about the kind of training you’re willing to invest in. Use a formula to figure out what to expect.

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Figuring Out If We’re Having An OK Year

We’re hitting our numbers in terms of new sales, but we’re still off in overall revenue and profit forecast. We’re trying to figure out what’s working and what’s not working. Is it mix? If the mix is OK, maybe our forecast was off? What about the time it takes to ramp up and show results?

THOUGHTS OF THE DAY: Delivering according to plan can be complicated. Coming up with a plan that makes sense can be just as challenging. Look at the puzzle from multiple points of view. Take a critical look at the timing of income and expenses.

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From Doer to Manager

Our shop guy needs help. His hands are on the machines because he doesn’t have the right people working for him. He doesn’t give out enough warnings, says he doesn’t have time to look for people to hire. He’d rather do the work than step back and manage. What should we do?

THOUGHTS OF THE DAY: Managers are made, not born. You will have to help your shop guy make time to step back and assess. Recruiting is a specialized skill. Find someone in the shop who can be a great second in command.

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The Value of Maintenance Work

We add one client and then we lose one. There’s no real growth in maintenance work. We have never done a campaign push to grow the maintenance side of our business. Should we focus there? And if so, how do we do it?

Thoughts of the Day: Consider the effort that goes into getting new customers. Make sure that the business lines you’re growing have long term value. Teach your employees about how valuable repeat customers are to the business, what that means to the company’s well-being long term, and what they can do to help.

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Teaching People to Reach for More

As a leader, I know I’ve made a big mistake, more than once. By taking things away when people couldn’t get everything done, I’ve taught them to throw their hands up and throw in the towel. How do I teach people to stick with it and climb up that big hill, overcoming more challenges than they think they can, without having them get lost, and without jeopardizing the business’ progress? Appreciate the help!

Thoughts of the Day:   Manage your expectations into the realm of reality. Be willing to let people fail. Listen carefully to what’s going on. Build an expandable toolkit. Put the customer front and center.

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