Several weeks ago, I was conducting a sales seminar for designers and salespeople. Since I was the last speaker for the week, I asked the group what was their biggest challenge with the information they received. The answer: how will we implement these great ideas? You see the participants weren’t owners and couldn’t go back and immediately make changes. This wasn’t the first time I’ve heard this but this time I decided to add some sales strategies for the participants.
What good would all this information be if no one would listen?
1. So what do you do? First you must understand that if you’re selling customers you are an owner! Without you and your sales the business would die. Trust me, if you can’t sell anything you’ll be out the door and be replaced by someone who can sell. That’s how important you are.
2. Think like an owner. Being an owner and worked with many, I can tell you they think about money and sales. Without sales the business will not exist and a smart business owner puts as much money and time into training their sales staff. If you’ve been sent to a sales seminar consider it an honor and take it seriously. The owner has made an investment in your future. It means you are valued.
Your job? Rise to the occasion and learn as much as you can and be prepared to go back to your business and as they say: learn it, teach it and do it!
3. First things first. You’re probably excited and learned so many things you don’t know what to talk about first. Think like an owner and discuss the things that are connected to number 1. –sales and money. You will have learned lots of important things and many will stand out in your mind but are they the ones “most connected to the bottom line?” Are they ones you can implement easily, will they have the most impact on your business? Start with these things first. As someone once said, we’re learning how to be “mini moguls!”
4. Make sure it “makes sense.” Do you have the data right, do you have an example of how it gets done? If you need more info before you present your ideas, go get it right.
5. Make an appointment with the owner or manager who will be implementing your ideas and use rule 2. as one of your bargaining tools. “You sent me to these informative seminars, and there are ways that we can make more money and improve our sales. Who wouldn’t want to listen to this sales pitch? This will be the best sale you’ve ever had!
6. Have your list written and ready to go. Have examples of what other profitable stores are doing and use the names of industry people providing the information.
7. Back up your ideas with “clout.” By the way, don’t give up, offer your services if the owner wants more information and go find it. Hold yourself accountable for getting things done. Have a list of as many ideas as you want but start with the top start three. When you have some success, go back for another three!
8. Remind yourself why this is important. Changes that will improve your business will improve your personal business as well as make you more valuable to the business. It’s up to you manage your own career, build your brand and get educated. If you know it’s right, make it happen. Chances are your self-esteem will improve if you can make changes for your business. If you haven’t seen the movie “Moneyball” I suggest you see it. I love movies that make me want to go out and change the world. ( There’s a link to the trailer-watch it.)
9. Pat yourself on the back, know you’ve done a good job and pay attention to the results. Good luck!
10. Final suggestion: “When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So what the hell, leap.” Cynthia Heimel
Need help with your business? In Lisbeth’s book, Red Hot Customer Service, Lisbeth outlines the steps for building a successful business with customer service techniques. Lisbeth has been providing custom marketing and sales programs for the past 20 years. Lisbeth can be reached at Redhotcustomerservice@nycap.rr.com