If You Want to Be a Successful Entrepreneur, Take Note of These 7 Lessons

While everyone seems to have a good business concept, few ever execute their ideas successfully.
If You Want to Be a Successful Entrepreneur, Take Note of These 7 Lessons
By: Alejandro Saracho

One of the main objectives of creating a business is related to the generation of wealth: for the environment, for society, and for the business owner.

The generation of wealth is related to money and its correct management. Many entrepreneurs start their business as operators or technicians and never delve into money management. That makes their businesses stay small or not survive over time.

That is why I decided to write this article entitled “7 secrets of money to undertake successfully”:

1. Entrepreneurial Mindset

Many people think that all they need to start is a good idea. Unfortunately, it is not like that, good ideas abound everywhere and are destined to die if you do not have an entrepreneurial mindset.

Creating a new business requires hard work, high tolerance for frustration, being willing to carry on when it seems like all is lost, implementation, implementation, and more implementation. But above all, it requires an obsession to achieve your dreams, more than an obsession to generate money.

If you look for money, your chances of success will decrease (because at the beginning you won’t have it). If you seek to transform people’s lives and make a change on the planet, money will come as a consequence.

So do you or do you not have an entrepreneurial mindset?

2. Viable Business Model

Most people who start a business become obsessed with their brand and their product, and this is one of the most common mistakes I see in entrepreneurs. Your brand and your product are worth nothing unless they show that they are capable of generating money.

  • First: you need to make sure that someone is willing to buy your product/service. Describe who your valuable customer would be, approach people who meet the characteristics, and see if they are willing to buy.
  • Second: you need to develop your business model — that is, know how to interconnect all parts of your business. You need to know how you are going to attract prospects, how you are going to convert them into customers, how you are going to produce and deliver your product or service, how you are going to charge, and how you are going to pay. When you have it assembled, you will realize that your model requires money to function. Those are your costs and your expenses.
  • Third: you need to make your financial statements or your numbers and make sure that your business is profitable and scalable. You find profitability when you calculate your sales minus your costs and minus your expenses. You find scalability when you validate that there are many people who meet the characteristics of your valued customer, that you can serve them through your business model, and that you have enough money to start and maintain it.

If you meet these three points, we can say that your business is viable. If you realize that it is not, you can adjust your business model as long as you validate that someone is willing to buy what you offer.

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3. Absolute Austerity

One of the mistakes people make when starting their business is that they buy and overspend. They look for the best computer, the best offices, the best car or they use their money on things that are not directly related to generating sales.

A principle that Carlos Slim uses that I highly recommend is called Absolute Austerity. When you buy something, make sure that it is directly related to the generation of sales.

If you need a computer, ask yourself which computer meets your basic needs (not which one meets the needs of your ego). And ask yourself, if I buy a more expensive computer, will this increase my sales?

4. Cash Flow

Cash flow is the gasoline that drives businesses. Many businesses that are highly profitable (that is, that generate profit), die because the entrepreneur or business owner did not know how to manage their cash flow.

There are three levers that I recommend to manage your cash flow well:

  • The first: charge before and pay later. In this way, you can finance your business with the money of your clients, instead of you becoming their bank.
  • The second: handle low inventories. One of the places where your money gets stuck is in inventories if you have too much of it. Try not to give in to the temptation to buy too high a volume for a discount.
  • The third: reserve of protection. Try to have enough backup money to pay for one to two months of business. There are always fat cows and skinny cows. When you don’t have the money to pay for the lean operation, a profitable business ends up going out of business.

5. Reinvest Your Profits

One of the temptations of the entrepreneur is to spend his earnings as soon as they arrive. My suggestion is to reinvest them in the same business. You can use them to attract more prospects with marketing and sales or to streamline your operation and lower your costs and expenses.

Until when should you reinvest your earnings? Until you have reached a good critical mass and the business can operate even without you.

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6. Plan Your Transition

One of the questions that I get asked the most is: when is the right time to quit my job and dedicate myself fully to my business?

The answer is when your business is able to generate enough money (consistently and constantly) to replace the salary that your work generates.

It is important to plan the transition with clear goals and objectives. In such a way that you say: in six months the business must leave me this amount of money. When I reach this amount of money I will quit my job. This way you will know where to focus and when the transition will occur.

And I know that many entrepreneurs are kamikazes and are willing to quit right now.

Can you do it and achieve it successfully? Of course. However, if you want to avoid or lessen the impact of entrepreneurial trauma and emotional crises, I recommend planning your transition.

7. Continuous Learning

This part is essential for any entrepreneur. You need to be willing to continually learn if you want to be successful. If you don’t like learning, maybe entrepreneurship is not for you because, in a short time, you will become obsolete and the business will end up failing.

Now, there is a type of education for every purpose.

  1. If you want to learn to be a better collaborator in a company, you need to consider academic education (such as masters, diplomas, specialties).
  2. If what you want is to learn how to generate better results in your business, what you need is focused education (such as conferences, seminars, workshops).

The difference between the two is that the first gives you a lot of theory (and takes a lot of time) and teaches you how to run someone else’s business and the second teaches you implementable principles (in a short time) and teaches you how to run your business.

What is the first thing that I recommend you learn? To manage your money. To manage your personal finances.

Business money is a reflection of how you handle your money. If you learn to do it, you will achieve that your business generates sustainable results.

Related:

30 Ways to Become a More Successful Entrepreneur (neilpatel.com)


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How To Survive The Upcoming Hyperinflation Predicted By Michael Burry

Dr. Michael J. Burry from the “Big Short” Fame Is Warning People of the Upcoming Hyperinflation of the U.S. Dollar. And, Again, No One Is Listening.

Dateline: Creve Coeur, MO. USA/February 26th, 2021/By: Jeffrey L. Klump


He made a name for himself shorting the sub-prime housing market in 2005.

Dr. Michael J. Burry made billions for himself and his investors when he decided to short the housing market.

Everyone at the time thought he was crazy.

This writer told people in 2003 that there would be a major crash in the real estate/housing market.

I was laughed at and told real estate never goes down.

Enter Michael Burry once again, and on February 20th, 2021, when he sent out a Tweet Storm from his Twitter account Cassandra@micaeljburry.

In the tweets that were sent, which have since been deleted by Twitter, Burry warned everyone that we are approaching a hyperinflationary event for the U.S. dollar, similar to what happened in Weimar Germany in the 1920s.

Here is part of that saved Tweet from Michael Burry: People say I didn’t warn last time. I did, but no one listened. So I warn this time. And still, no one listens. But I will have proof I warned.

You can already see hyperinflation in asset prices including the U.S. stock market, bond market, and real estate market.

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All of these markets are at all-time highs and none of these markets reflect any sense of reality.

Here is another excerpt from Michael Burry’s Tweetstorm:

The US government is inviting inflation with its MMT-tinged policies. Brisk Debt/GDP, M2 increases while retail sales, PMI stage V recovery. Trillions more stimulus & re-opening to boost demand as employee and supply chain costs skyrocket. #ParadigmShift

The U.S. dollar has already been hyperinflating in terms of the U.S. stock market and bond market.

When you see markets like this at unreal prices, that is hyperinflation in terms of those assets because prices are measured in U.S. dollars.

The U.S. dollar has hyperinflated in terms of Bitcoin #BTC as well.

Bitcoin was over $60,000 U.S. dollars at one point during the past week.

In some African countries, Bitcoin is over $80,000 in terms of their country’s paper currency.

If you need information on Germany’s Weimar inflation during the 1920s, Click Here.

There are 2 assets that have yet to hyperinflate versus the U.S. dollar, and when they go hyperbolic, it is game over for the U.S. dollar empire.

Those assets are physical gold and silver.

Both of these assets are affordable in terms of the U.S. dollar, but that will not last long and you will have trouble finding both. They are in very high demand.

Michael Burry has a knack for seeing things unfold in the future because he actually sees things right now in reality. Not as if he wants them to be, but as they really are.

Even Bank of America is sounding alarm bells regarding the hyperinflation of the U.S. dollar. Click Here to read.

Gasoline prices are already going up. Joe Biden is taking the blame for it, but he has nothing to do with the increase in the price of oil.

Gas and food prices are going up because the U.S. dollar is failing. It is in the early stages of hyperinflating in terms of retail goods and services.

Listen carefully to the smartest man in the world, Clif High from HalfpastHuman.com. He talks about “Wooflation” which is a combination of inflation, deflation, and hyperinflation. 

The only way that you will be able to survive the hyperinflationary storm of the U.S. dollar, is to get out of the dollar, as much as possible.

Do what you can to find hard assets like physical gold and silver.

Another asset you may have access to is Trees. Lumber prices are at an all-time high.

Wall Street has rigged the system in both the stock market and bond market to their favor.

This was proven just recently by the Reddit Raiders and their unbelievable short on GameStop.

That event alone showed the whole world just how rigged and fraudulent the U.S. financial system in total, is being manipulated.

Click Here for the full story.

You want anything physical and tangible.

Take your money out of the banking system.

Physical paper dollars will have some value for a period of time, but if your bank fails, you are screwed. Don’t expect the government to come save you. They will be putting out all kinds of other fires.

Water and food should be at the top of your list to have on hand. You cannot survive without them.

This is the second phase of the financial collapse that I have been predicting.

The first phase was in 2008.

Are you ready for everything and anything?

People say I didn’t warn last time. I did, but no one listened. So I warn this time. And still, no one listens. But I will have proof I warned.” Dr. Michael J. Burry

Related:

https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/michael-burry-warns-weimar-hyperinflation-coming

Kansas Bill Would Make Gold and Silver Legal Tender in the State | SchiffGold

 


Jeffrey L. Klump is a writer, blogger, work from home business opportunity specialist, and currently working on the book, “Post Traumatic Stress Isn’t Just For Soldiers”. You can contact him here.

 


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How To Face Fear and What It Means to Grant Cardone

What Does FEAR Mean To You And How Do You Face It?

What does FEAR mean to you and how do you face it?  Everyone feels fear. I do. You do. Everyone. The only difference is how we each react to fear. I’ve always thought that fear has two meanings which sum up the two basic ways people deal with this unique and complicated emotional state. FEAR can mean:

Forget Everything And Run

Or it can mean:

Face Everything And Rise

The real key to overcoming fear and not letting it control you. It’s about not caring what people think of you.  It’s about not wanting to impress anyone but yourself. It’s about having nothing to prove to anyone. When you refuse to let fear control you it becomes possible to do what you want as you pursue your passions, your desires, and your goals.

I’ve felt fear in all forms. I have even been afraid for my life as I was being pistol-whipped by a drug-dealing thug.  Meanwhile, you’re afraid of what? That you’ll fail? That you’re not good enough? That you’ll look stupid? That people will laugh at you?

Been there. Done that. So what? People ain’t laughing at me anymore.

What would your life be like if you never gave in to fear? What would you be like as a person if fear didn’t have so much control over you?

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Look, I get it. Fear is wired into us and it serves a purpose. It keeps us alert and ready to handle any unforeseen situations. However, it does not necessarily exist simply to motivate you to run away. You all know the expression “fight or flight”. Both come from fear and since both are an option, I’ll choose “fight” every time.

Why? Because I choose to. Because I can. Because what’s the worst that can happen?

If I fail I try again. If someone says “no” I keep asking until they say “yes”. 

What Does FEAR Mean To You

I’m telling you that it is possible to conquer your fear so you can do what you love, make a massive impact, while having control over your income and your life but more importantly, I’m gonna show you…at the boldest, baddest most exclusive, action-packed 10X Growth Conference we’ve ever held. 

I know that last year caused people a lot of uncertainty and yes, fear. The media sure didn’t help. But the people who didn’t give in to fear, like me and my 10X team, instead of running away or pushing the panic button, created opportunities and actually succeeded. I’m not bragging when I say we crushed it in 2020. I just want you to know that even in a time where fear is everywhere it’s possible to succeed. 

I can show you how when you join me at the 10X Growth Conference which is now sold out but you can still attend on-line.

Now just so you know, I’m going to push you outside of your comfort zone. I will show you how to achieve goals you never thought possible. 

I am going to make you realize that you’re capable of so much MORE than you’re doing right now if fear was not holding you back.

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Does the thought of starting something completely new and unknown scare you?

Do you have doubts that you can really do this?

Are you worried about failure?

GOOD!

Being scared is perfectly acceptable. Letting that feeling keep you from achieving your potential is not. 

What Does FEAR Mean To You

Wherever you are in the world, whatever experience you have, whoever you are, however old you are, the 10X Growth Conference can not only elevate your professional life and your financial situation but your confidence as well. Confidence is the light that eliminates the darkness of fear and the cool thing is that confidence multiplies on its own with every accomplishment.

We all have to decide if we are going to let fear win or will we say “ENOUGH!”

Enough playing for peanuts! Enough settling for average. Enough living to please others.

Enough allowing fear to determine the course of your life.

Instead,  become the 10X badass you were meant to be. Join me at the 10X Growth Conference from wherever you are and you’ll see that there is safety and success in numbers…with nothing to fear.

-Grant

Related:

 

 

For more information on how you can be a part of the world’s biggest sales, marketing, and business conference click here for more information on the 10X Growth Conference.

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5 Powerful Reasons Why You Should Write Down Your Goals

Goals Serve a Purpose, but You Need to Be Thinking of Them Often
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Published on Jan 1, 2021

By Amanda Dudley

Image Credit: Unsplash


The year was 2017. Ninety-nine year old Annie was pictured smiling as a policeman handcuffed and led her into a cell. You’ve probably never seen a smiling convict before but Annie’s case was a little different. While most people would be shivering at the thought of being placed in a damp, dark cell, she had just achieved one of her life-long goals: getting arrested.

Everyone on earth (including your cat) has goals – from the Forbes-worthy plans to the downright ridiculous ones that would probably top the “craziest life goals you’ve ever heard of” list. The 6-year old girl down the street wants to own Disneyland someday, while your cat probably wants to become the only owner of your house. These goals can be achieved. However, the big question is how? How do you stop your goals from just ending up as unchecked items on a bucket list?

Even though there’s no clear-cut formula for success, one way to ensure that you can actually achieve your goals is to write them down. In fact, psychological studies have shown that people who write down their goals are 42% more likely to achieve them than people who don’t. But don’t just take our word (and statistics) for it. 

Here are five solid reasons why writing down your goals is a surefire formula to success:

1. Increases motivation

Most people say that the Bermuda Triangle is the hardest thing to find. However, this isn’t exactly true. Do you know what’s harder to find? Motivation when you need it the most. For a lot of people, it’s quite easy to set and map out personal or professional goals. On the other hand, when it comes to actually take action, their zeal suddenly disappears. An easy solution to this problem would be to set a goal and then write it down immediately. 

Studies have revealed that when you write down your goals, the motivation to achieve them increases substantially. Subconsciously, you would feel committed to the objectives you’ve written down and as such, take the necessary steps to achieve them. Writing down your goals is just like giving yourself a subconscious command. Consequently, each time you get distracted, your brain will subtly remind you of your goals and aspirations. 

“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy and inspires your hopes.” —Andrew Carnegie

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2. Makes it easier to remember 

Believe it or not, a large number of people often forget their goals or aspirations. With the hustle and bustle of modern life, it’s far too easy to get distracted and forget about any goals or New Year resolutions you may have set. However, putting your goals on paper helps to enhance remembrance. Ever heard of the generation effect? If you haven’t, here’s a quick breakdown of this neuroscience term. The generation effect is a phenomenon when a person finds it easier to remember information generated by their own mind, rather than the information they read or picked up from a book. When you write something, your brain automatically assumes that it’s important and focuses on it. 

For instance, if you read a travel guide to Paris, you’d most likely remember only a few bits and pieces from it. However, when you jot down salient points from the guide in your own words, your brain knows that this piece of information is more important than the one you just read from the guide. As such, you’d find it easier to recall it later. This is basically how the generation effect works.

Even though the generation effect seems like a fancy term, it’s more common than most people think. When you map out your goals and write them down, your brain assigns importance to them and as such, makes it easier for you to recall them. 

3. Helps clarify your goals 

Let’s admit it, our goals can be a little vague and non-specific sometimes. For instance, let’s assume your goal for the year was to do something daring. In this case, your goal for the year could end up in an epic fail because you’d spend so much time trying to choose a daring task. 

It’s even harder because “daring” could mean anything, ranging from hiking up Mount Everest or drinking a bottle of hot sauce without water. However, writing down your goals would help to narrow your focus and clarify what you really want to do. This way, there’d be no room for confusion or dilly-dallying. 

4. Enhances hope

Hope is one extra reason why you should be writing your goals as soon as you set them. When it comes to achieving one’s goals and aspirations, hope is an essential factor. Without hope, you’d most likely lack the drive to take the necessary steps towards achieving your target. 

Writing down your goals and committing to them fuels hope and gives you something to look forward to. When you’re hopeful, you’re able to achieve your goals in no time at all. 

“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.” —Pablo Picasso

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5. Sets boundaries between wishes and goals

What’s the difference between a goal and a wish? A shooting star. Just before you chuckle or roll your eyes at this joke, it’s important to note that there’s a whole world of difference between goals and mere wishful thinking. 

Before your goal is written down, it’s just one of your thoughts or longings. However, the moment you pen down your goals, you give it substance and transform it from a wish to a target. It becomes something real and tangible. You could even set deadlines and action plans. This way, you won’t spend hours building castles in the air when you have a real target. 

Any dream or goal can be achieved eventually. Sure, it may take time, but a great way to kickstart your success is by penning down your goals. Writing down each goal spurs your subconscious into action and transforms your passive longing into actual targets. This way, the distance between you and your aspiration will be shortened. At the end of the day, who needs shooting stars when you have a pen and paper?

 

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(For additional information on goal setting for 2021, go to =>Why You Should Write Down 100 Goals For 2021 And Beyond (addicted2success.com)

RELATED TOPICS:CONSISTENCYDETERMINATIONGOAL SETTINGHOW TO ACHIEVE YOUR GOALSHOW TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN LIFEHOW TO GET WHAT YOU WANTHOW TO SET GOALSNEVER GIVE UPPUSH YOURSELF FORWARDTHE DOMINO EFFECTDON’T MISSStop Apologizing for Pursuing a Successful Life

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Amanda Dudley

Amanda Dudley is a writer and a lecturer with a Ph.D. in History from Stanford University. When she is not lecturing and helping students with complex assignments, she works as a part-time essay writer, providing top-quality essay writing services and academic projects. An efficient writer, she delivers projects in good time, ensuring that her clients are satisfied and content.



 

How To Boost Your Brand and Business From LinkedIn in 2021

5 Reasons Why LinkedIn Will Boost Your Personal Brand and Business in 2021

December 22, 2020 by Michelle Griffin Leave a CommentMichelle Griffin_LinkedIn

5 Reasons Why LinkedIn Will Boost Your Personal Brand and Business in 2021

by Michelle Griffin


For many years I thought LinkedIn was just the place to post your resume or look for a new and improved job.

Aside from promoting work‌ ‌events,‌ I rarely logged on and hardly posted. I didn’t think LinkedIn could help my already-established career.

Fast forward to earlier this year. I had recently left my long-time job to pursue my consulting side-gig full time and was looking for a way to connect with fellow marketers and meet potential clients in the mindset of the pandemic.

What I found surprised me. How had I missed out on this new and improved LinkedIn?

I soon started sending out connections and commenting on posts of interesting people whom I wanted to meet and learn from.

And it wasn’t too long before things started happening.

In just a few months, by interacting, engaging and offering insight, I met new colleagues, landed clients and was invited to speak on a podcast.

All by showing up daily on LinkedIn.

And the good news is you can do the same. Even‌ ‌if‌ ‌you’re‌ ‌new‌ ‌to‌ ‌LinkedIn ‌or‌ ‌have‌ ‌500+‌ ‌connections,‌ it can be a big boost to your career and client connections.

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Here’s how:

Get found online, faster

If a recruiter or future client looks you up online what do they find? With a LinkedIn profile, they’ll find you faster and in the top rankings of search pages. Try it for yourself: Google your name and see it appear in the top three search results.

If you have a blog, Google also gives authority to LinkedIn’s long-form articles. That means you can update your existing blog or content, add it to LinkedIn’s articles section and have a better chance of it being found.

It’s your digital reputation, not your digital resume

When Microsoft acquired LinkedIn in 2016 for $27 billion, it became more of a professional social networking site rather than a resume and recruiter site. Each month new tools and features are rolled out often to showcase your skills and feature your best work to potential clients.

Think of your LinkedIn profile as the digital story of your career. It’s your online reputation and proof of your personal and professional achievements. That’s why many people forgo business cards and use their profiles to highlight their blogs, published articles, videos, photos and best podcast episodes. 

Online networking is the new normal

This year showed us a digital presence is practically the ONLY way to meet and build relationships.

Gone are in-person weekly or monthly networking events, industry conferences and annual summits to connect with people who can move your career forward. 

When‌ ‌we‌ ‌can’t‌ ‌meet‌ ‌face‌ ‌to‌ ‌face,‌ ‌how‌ ‌are‌ ‌you‌ ‌going‌ ‌to‌ ‌network‌ ‌and‌ ‌market?‌ 

LinkedIn is this place. Currently, there are 760‌ ‌million‌+ professionals worldwide and thousands of new members are added weekly.

Check out these impressive stats and see how fast LinkedIn is growing top-tier professionals.

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It’s a friendlier and inclusive social site

It’s the business world so LinkedIn members are on their best behavior. Trolling, inappropriate messages and abusive behavior are not common. 

As one connection told me, “People on LinkedIn post and comment about stimulating things that I find interesting and help me improve personally and professionally.”

He’s right. 

I’ve met some of the friendliest, smartest and most encouraging connections on LinkedIn. And it’s not just people in my industry or country. From Australia, the UK and Canada, I’ve zoomed offline with professionals I would’ve never had the opportunity to meet in real life.

No matter your age, experience, country or industry, everyone can contribute and is warmly welcomed in the LinkedIn community.

Your Ticket to More Opportunities

You don’t have to have thousands of connections and followers to start seeing and making a difference. Even‌ ‌if‌ ‌you’re‌ ‌new‌ ‌to‌ ‌LinkedIn or if you haven’t logged on in years, just showing up and participating daily can make a noticeable difference to your personal brand.

LinkedIn can help you find:

A‌ ‌job‌ ‌you‌ ‌love

Perfect-fit clients

Awareness of your brand or business

Speaking‌ ‌opportunities

Investors‌ ‌to‌ ‌fund‌ ‌your‌ ‌next‌ ‌venture ‌

Influential‌ ‌people‌ ‌ready‌ ‌to‌ ‌collaborate‌ ‌with‌ ‌you‌

Let’s start connecting

I learned the hard way, wasted precious time and don’t want you to make the mistake I did. Start today so you can make your mark on the professional world.

I’d love to connect with you. Find me at https://www.linkedin.com/in/michellebgriffin.

Coming Soon: Ready to get going on LinkedIn? My follow-up article will give you the tips and tools to optimize your LinkedIn profile and boost your personal brand.

Michelle Griffin

Michelle Griffin is a personal brand strategist and StoryBrand Certified Guide who specializes in helping service-based leaders and consultants grow with clear messaging, compelling marketing and greater visibility online.

With more than two decades professional services experience in corporate, nonprofit and agency settings, she’s helped businesses of all sizes achieve successful results through branding, public relations and strategic marketing campaigns. Connect with Michelle on Linkedin@michellebgriffin and learn more at michellebgriffin.commichellebgriffin.com

Filed Under: Personal BrandingSocial MediaTagged With: clientsLinkedInLinkedIn networkingprofessional development

Related:

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What Are The 3 Reasons To Urgently Rebrand Yourself?

3 Reasons You May Need to Urgently Rebrand And Yes, Covid Is One of Them
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Published on Dec 12, 2020

By Shona Maitland


Your brand is your fingerprint, your voice, your very essence of business being. It’s the sum total of everything you do, everything you offer, everything you believe, everything you project. Get it right, and your business thrives. Get it wrong, and you could lose customers by the droves. Let’s avoid that at all costs.

Here are three important reasons you may need to rebrand urgently: 

1. Your branding makes people think of a pandemic 

When I write the word “Covid-19”, what images do you think of?  Sickness? Stretchers? Viruses? Microbes? Face masks? Colors like red, black, clinical blue, and surgeon-gown-green? What words do you think of? Contagious? Sick? Quarantine? Death? Cough? Sneeze? Testing?

How do you feel when you think about Covid-19? Scared? Isolated? Anxious? Annoyed? Angry? Grief-stricken? Lonely? These are just a handful of common images, feelings and words associated with the pandemic, and none of them are particularly uplifting.  Yet, they may be the very words associated with your brand, if elements of your branding remind people of the virus. You might be wondering, “How would any brand possibly be associated with Covid-19?” 

Well, it might just be coincidence and plain bad luck. For example, years ago I saw a business logo on a van where the letter “o” within the logo was made into a little, spiky virus ball, almost identical to the ones we currently and constantly see on our televisions and news feeds. 

If that company is still operating today, I’d suggest an urgent rebrand. Despite the logo possibly working for them in the past, it will now be linked, even just fleetingly and subconsciously, to something negative and dangerous. It could impact sales. In the above example, the logo lettering was deliberately crafted to look like a virus, but what of all the quirky shapes and images that accidentally look like viruses? 

In my opinion, they should change.  It’s true, Covid-19 will pass but in the meantime, the owners of those businesses are trying to run their brands under a banner of positivity, which is challenging given the possible association with the virus. If you want a positive brand, you must create branding that triggers positive feelings, not negative ones. 

“Brand is just a perception, and perception will match reality over time.” – Elon Musk

Make no mistake, brands are getting it wrong. Viewers in the United Kingdom were repelled by a KFC television advertisement featuring people licking their oily fingers in public spaces, after chomping on the chicken. 

What did viewers instantly think of? Covid-19! They were unimpressed that KFC was encouraging people to lick their fingers during a health crises.  KFC pulled the ad. If they hadn’t, their brand could have been temporarily fried. KFC would have been seen as reckless and irresponsible, and definitely not doing their bit for the pandemic.

In a nutshell, Covid-19 is currently imbedded in the collective global conscience. If your branding is associated with it in a negative way, consider rebranding ASAP. If you cannot invest in rebranding, try to remove or tastefully obscure the images that create the negative association.

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2. Your branding is offensive 

Stroll around certain parts of the internet and social media, and you’ll see rampant, chest-thumping, offense taking. You aren’t expected to know everything people are offended about, needless to say, it’s a lot! Some of it completely frivolous. But there are also many legitimate reasons why people take offense. 

With that in mind, the key areas to naturally avoid are: racism, sexism and anything that insults, attacks or marginalizes people because of their age, intelligence, religion, gender, sexuality, physical appearance, and mental or physical disabilities. A timely and well-publicized example of rebranding amidst the foreground of Black Lives Matter, is the NFL team formerly known as the Redskins, who are now temporarily known as the Washington Football Team. 

Redskins is a disparaging term for Native Americans, and it had been the team’s name since 1933 after initially being called the Boston Braves in 1932, prior to moving to Washington. After years of protests from Native Americans, fans and players, the Redskins leadership announced they’d drop the name and logo after a review process, to the anger of some, and the relief of many. 

There has been mockery around the temporary name: the Washington Football Team, and admittedly, it is beige – but likely deliberately so, to avoid any attacks relating to creativity, given it is impermanent. 

Importantly, management understood the very message I’m highlighting in this article, that sometimes the need to rebrand is urgent. While it took the leadership a long time to get to this point, once the decision was made, there was urgency to follow through. Given the process of creating a new brand is going to take time, a temporary new name was pressingly necessary. 

If you’ve ever received complaints about your brand, or sensed a general unease amongst clients and potential customers toward it; or indeed, felt uncomfortable yourself, it’s urgently time to rebrand. 

“Branding demands commitment; commitment to continual re-invention; striking chords with people to stir their emotions; and commitment to imagination. It is easy to be cynical about such things, much harder to be successful.” – Richard Branson

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3. You’re embarrassed of your branding

An entrepreneur came to me with a common problem. She’d started her business years ago with little money, creating the brand entirely on her own, including designing the logo. As her business developed, it quickly outgrew the branding, and certainly was not reflective of her polished image anymore. 

Her embarrassment was so intense she stopped handing out business cards, using business stationery and telling people to visit her website. Yet, she saw rebranding as a low priority. Until of course, sales began to dwindle. All of a sudden, rebranding became an urgent task because she wanted to shout loudly and proudly about her business again, but couldn’t do so with her existing branding.

My suggestion is, don’t wait for business to falter. If you’re embarrassed about your branding, treat rebranding as a top priority, proactively rather than reactively. 

Although rebranding is a process you’d like to undertake in your own time, there are occasions where it becomes an urgent matter, particularly if your branding causes offense or creates a negative perception around your business. In some cases, saying goodbye to your existing branding might be hard, but saying goodbye to your business, as a possible result of that branding, is much harder. Stay clear, stay respectful, stay congruent, stay the course.

RELATED TOPICS:BRANDINGBRANDING TIPSBUILDING YOUR BRANDBUSINESSENTREPRENEURSHOW TO BUILD A BRANDWHY YOU NEED TO REBRANDDON’T MISSEntrepreneurs: 7 Tools For Improving Your Edge

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Shona Maitland

Shona Maitland has 10+ years experience as a business owner, brand strategist and designer at Shona Creative. She has further expertise in ethical and socially-responsible businesses and charities at Brands of Change, her second business.


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5 Reasons Why Starting Small is the Key to Success

Essential Reasons Why Starting Small is the Key to Success
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Published on Nov 8, 2020

ByShawn Lim


“The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.” This is one of the famous quotes from Confucius. And the success principle within this line explains how anyone can achieve anything they want if they are willing to put in small and consistent effort. 

You may have heard of the best-selling book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” written by Dale Carnegie. But do you know that the book started as a set of rules printed on a card no larger than a postcard?

Carnegie prepared a short talk where he called it ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People.’ The short talk was well-received and was then evolved into a course. And he needed teaching materials for the course. And so, Carnegie wrote down the rules for his course on a card and delivered it to his fellow students.

And in the next season, he printed the rules on a larger card, then a leaflet, then a series of booklets, with each version expanding in size and scope.

After 15 years of teaching, research, and experimentation, he compiled his rules for his course and became the book, How to Win Friends and Influence People. That was how the best-selling book was written. One step at a time.

Remember how Apple started? It began with Steve Jobs and his friend Steve Wozniak launching their tech giant in Job’s garage. The same went for Amazon. Jeff Bezos and his team started Amazon selling only books. But Bezos had a big dream and today, Amazon is a multi billion-dollar company.

As you can see, everything started small. Every big success you have heard of started as a series of small steps.

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Therefore, the key to success is to start small. Below are the 5 reasons why you want to commit to taking baby steps:

1. It takes less time and energy

It is always easier to start small. Think about it, do you think it is easier to write a 300-page book or it is easier to write just 1,000 words a day? Of course, the answer is obvious. And because it is easier to start small, your resistance to doing the work will be lowered. You don’t need too much motivation or willpower to get small things done.

This is why it is so vital to focus on small victories. If you do only 5 small things a day, you will have accomplished 5 small wins. In a week, you will have produced 35 little wins. In a month, you will have 150 small wins. And within a year, you will have accomplished 1,825 small victories.

Do you think these small victories will accumulate and make a huge impact on your life? You better they will. 

“It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.” – John Wooden

2. It prevents overwhelming

Another key reason you want to start small is that it prevents overwhelm. You see, one of the main reasons people procrastinate and put things off until a later time is because of the pain of doing the work.

They feel overwhelmed to do the work. They feel the pain. And hence, they choose to procrastinate and delay the work. However, when things are easy to do, you won’t feel overwhelmed by them. Again, it is easier to commit to writing just 1,000 words a day than to complete an entire 300 page book.

It is your psychology that is in play. When you look at the entire project, you feel like you need to spend a lot of time and energy to do it. But when you break down the project into small actionable steps, you can tackle one small step at a time.

You have to understand that every big thing once started small. When you try to do everything all at once, you feel powerless and overwhelmed by the scale of the work involved.

3. It grows your confidence and motivation

Imagine you have goals to pursue and you know what you need to do today to make progress, but you don’t do anything. By the end of the day, how will you feel? Guilty and not good, right?

But if you stick to your plan, take action, and make progress, how would you feel at the end of the day? You’d likely feel satisfied and motivated, right? Because you have done something, made progress, and are slowly moving towards your goals.

That’s what taking small steps will do for you. When you make progress, you feel good. It boosts your confidence and motivation level.

Here’s a great quote from Tony Robbins, “People who succeed have momentum. The more they succeed, the more they want to succeed, and the more they find a way to succeed. Similarly, when someone is failing, the tendency is to get on a downward spiral that can even become a self-fulfilling prophecy.”

This is why you want to make sure you are building upward momentum. Take small actions and make progress to build your momentum. The more momentum you gain, the more powerful you become.

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4. It gives you the ability to pivot

There is another essential reason to start small – it allows you to pivot. Let me give you an example. Imagine you want to write a weight loss book, but you have no idea what title to write. And so, you start with writing short articles with various titles across the same industry.

And then you notice that one particular article received the most engagements. People share the article, leave comments, and say how much they love it. And you decide to write a book based on the article.

That’s the pivot. You use feedback you get from the small actions you make and then grow it into something bigger. In business, it is called MVP, Minimum Viable Product. You want to quickly test to see if an idea works before you put in your time and money to develop the complete product. When you start small, it allows you to pivot by getting immediate feedback from your actions. 

“Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid only of standing still.” – Chinese Proverb 

5. It simply is the first step

Yes, no matter how big or small your goals or the success you want, you simply have to take one small step at a time. You can’t skip steps.

Just like if you want to lose weight through exercise, there is no way you can skip the exercise and get to the result directly. Taking small steps are necessary because there are no shortcuts to success.

Therefore, dream big, and start small. You don’t have to commit to taking big and bold steps, because all you need to do is take one baby step at a time. Be consistent, and eventually, you will arrive at your destination.

Do you believe starting small is the key to success? Share your thoughts with us below!

RELATED TOPICS:DALE CARNEGIEDREAM BIGHOW TO BUILD A BUSINESSHOW TO GET RESULTSHOW TO SUCCEEDHOW TO WIN AT LIFEHOW TO WIN IN BUSINESSKEYS TO SUCCESSSUCCESS PSYCHOLOGYTAKE SMALL STEPSUP NEXTHow the Use of Certain Words Can Determine Your Business SuccessDON’T MISSThe Framework to Making Better Decisions in Your Life

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Shawn Lim

 

Shawn Lim is the creator of StunningMotivation.com (https://StunningMotivation.com) and he’s a passionate blogger in the personal development industry who has inspired thousands to pursue their dreams and follow their passions. You can learn more about him plus download a free copy of his guidebook, Reach Your Goals on his website.

 


 

How To Change Your Life

The Two Meetings with Gary Vaynerchuk That Changed My Life

Four lessons in life and business with one of the world’s savviest marketers.

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The Two Meetings with Gary Vaynerchuk That Changed My Life
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September 21, 2020 6 min read

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Savvy entrepreneurs are familiar with Gary Vaynerchuk books like #AskGaryVeeCrush It and Crushing It. Those in the social media world know Gary Vaynerchuk as a brilliant marketer and entrepreneur. I had the opportunity to see Vaynerchuk speak before he was a social media phenomenon with eight million Instagram followers, and the lessons he taught that day are ones I still reference today.  

It was 2007, and I was one of a group of 300 entrepreneurs who saw Vaynerchuk at his very first public speaking appearance. We had heard of this crazy Russian with the funny name, but none of us knew what to expect. I remember sitting there listening to Vaynerchuk speak and thinking, “This guy is amazing – but I have no idea what he’s talking about.”

Social media was still a burgeoning industry in 2007, and frankly, pretty much his entire talk went right over my head. So he finishes with his speech (no notes or PowerPoint, of course) and then says to the audience: “Any questions?”

I looked around the room, and there was an awkward silence. No one raised their hand. So I slowly put my hand up. Vaynerchuk calls on me. I gulp.

I said, “Well Gary, everything you just said was brilliant. But I have no idea what you just said.”

The audience burst into spontaneous laughter and applause. I think a lot of other people were thinking what I was thinking and were glad I spoke up. Vaynerchuk’s response is just one of the brilliant lessons he’s taught me in the decade-plus since then. 

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Give away your content for free

When I asked the question, Vaynerchuk didn’t miss a beat. He says to me: “What do you do?”

I said, “I’m a business coach. I help entrepreneurs grow their business and have more financial freedom and time freedom.”

He says, “Perfect! Do you sell books, online courses and coaching programs?”

I said yes.

He says, “Great! Now I want you to start giving away all that stuff for free.”

I sat there, dumbfounded. Remember, this was back in 2007. Today, everyone gives away content to bring attention to their brands and companies. But back then, it seemed like a new concept, at least the way he was saying it. 

Long story short: I followed Vaynerchuk’s advice. (My momma didn’t raise no dummy.) I started giving away my content on platforms like FacebookYouTube, in videos, on my blog and on podcasts. Following his advice has become one of the cornerstones of my customer acquisition model, arguably the most important one.

Related: The Headline That Made Gary Vaynerchuk’s Head Explode

Put family first

Soon after that first life-changing meeting with Vaynerchuk, I had a second opportunity to spend time with him — this time, when I hosted him in my car. Vaynerchuk was about to go on his very first book tour, so I called his office, asked for his assistant and told them: “Hey, I’m a huge Gary Vee fan, and I’d love to host him while he’s here in Ohio.”

His assistant said, “Great! We were actually looking for somebody to do that.”

“I’m your man!” I said.

I remember how focused and driven Vaynerchuk was, but the thing that stood out to me the most was how he put family first. Vaynerchuk would take phone call after phone call — with CEOs, celebrities, his staff. Because he was in my car, I couldn’t help hearing his end of the conversation. During many of these important phone calls, he’d say this: “Sorry man, I gotta call you back. My wife’s calling.” Then he would click over to speak with his wife, and without the slightest hint of irritation, he’d say: “Hi honey, what’s up?”

Vaynerchuk’s Twitter profile says “Family First,” but that’s something many people in our industry say without actually following through. But I can tell you from firsthand experience that Vaynerchuk does indeed put his family first. 

Related: Gary Vaynerchuk and 8 Business Moguls Reveal Their Secrets for Building an Unstoppable Brand

Be present

One of the other things I noticed during that trip was how Vaynerchuk never hurried anyone. He was exactly the opposite of many of the divas you see on social media today. For example, after his book signing, I took him to a party that was held in his honor and filled with “Vayniacs” (passionate Gary Vaynerchuk fans).

You might expect the guest of honor to be “too busy” or “too important” to talk to everyone. Well, in many cases, you’d be right. But not our man Gary Vee.

Nope, Vaynerchuk took the time to talk with every single person who wanted to talk with him, no matter how long it took. He was completely present with each person. He looked them in the eyes and really listened to what they were saying. 

Related: Gary Vaynerchuk Is Showing Us How to Make It as an Entrepreneur

Be yourself

One big lesson I learned from spending time with Vaynerchuk is that you have to be yourself (as cliché as it sounds). I swear I’m not making this up, but in the two days I spent with him, I never once saw him go to the bathroom; he ate about enough to fill a hummingbird; and according to his schedule, he slept maybe four hours a night.

I finally asked him about that, and he admitted, “I’ve always had a weird metabolism. I don’t need to eat or sleep much.” (I didn’t press him about the bathroom part.)

That might work for him, but I eat like a horse and need sleep, like a LOT of sleep. Don’t try to be like Vaynerchuk if that’s not your body or your metabolism. 

I’ll always be grateful for the opportunity to spend time with Vaynerchuk and learn from him, as well as for the life and business lessons he taught me that I continue to use today. 


How To Be A Successful Leader From Home

Before the pandemic, working from home was something that a few people did and a lot more were interested in trying out.

Before the pandemic, working from home was something that a few people did and a lot more were interested in trying out. Now it’s rather suddenly become a fact of life for entire workplaces and teams, and many of us are still working to adapt. If you’re finding it difficult to manage some elements of working with your team or even staying on top of your own workflow and habits in this new normal, here’s some great advice compiled from my clients who are experienced in successfully working and leading from home

For Your Team:

Overcommunicate, especially when things are uncertain. Provide additional detail and context to make up for the information people can no longer pick up organically in casual conversations. Be as clear and consistent as possible to keep everyone moving in the same direction.

Raise the flag if something looks off. It’s important to speak up, because it’s harder to spot things that have gone awry when everyone is working separately. If you have a concern, check in to see if what others think . And if you’re spinning your wheels on a project, let your colleagues know. Identify problems early so you can start working toward solutions.

Create inner circles of collaboration. If you do your best work in collaboration with a work partner or small group, block a few hours to share a virtual room. Use technology to see each other, view each other’s screens and set up a virtual whiteboard to share ideas and work through problems.

Check in with others. Find the structure that works best for maintaining open channels with each member of your team, making sure you check in regularly. It’s more important than ever that you ask lots of questions and listen to the answers.

Recognize effort as well as accomplishments. There are fewer opportunities for recognition when everyone is working separately, so make an extra effort. In addition to celebrating wins, recognize those who are contributing extra effort and longer hours, those who are working through stressful situations, and those who have taken a risk or tried something new—even if it didn’t work out.

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For Yourself:

Start and end the work day at a specific time. Those who are new to working from home often experience burnout because they feel they never leave work. Set a schedule for the beginning and end of every work day. Of course there will be some nights you work late, but make them the exception, not the rule.

Work with your peak hours and low-energy moments. We all have times when we’re more focused and productive and times when our energy is lower and we’re more prone to distraction. An advantage of working from home is that it’s easier to balance your time, energy and productivity around your individual rhythm.

Remove as many distractions as possible. When you’re working from home, it’s easy to realize you’ve just spent an hour on social media or down an internet rabbit hole. Take social media off your work computer. Leave your phone in another room and get rid of any distractions that you know will get in the way of your productivity.

Create breaks during the day. No one can sit at a desk for 12 hours straight and do their best work. Even 15 to 30 minutes a couple of times a day can make a big difference in your focus and clarity. Treat it like a meeting and make yourself unavailable.

Exercise or do something vigorous at least four days a week. Aside from the physical benefits, exercise increases mental sharpness and makes you better at handling stress. It’s harder to fit exercise in, especially if you’re used to the routine of going to a gym, but your productivity and mental attitude—not to mention your health—depend on it.

Pay attention to your mindset. Working from home makes it extra important that you stay on top of your thoughts and mental attitude. It can be harder to find ways to clear your head, and there are fewer interactions with others to keep you grounded. Find things that nourish you—take your laptop out on the porch, play some music, read an author whose work inspires you.

Fight loneliness and isolation. Working from home, you miss out on camaraderie, companionship and interacting with others. But you don’t have to feel you’re on an island. Set up a virtual lunch date or happy hour, or create chat channels for topics of interest. Spend a bit of time every day connecting with co-workers about nonwork topics- think of it as the online version of stopping by their desk to chat.

Lead from within: Successfully working from home is a skill; it takes time and commitment and dedication to develop that skill. But with a great leader at the helm, people and teams can find their way and be as successful as ever.


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How To Utilize Data To Inform Your Sales Process

The Four Ways That Data Can Be Utilized To Inform Your Sales Process

By Dave Mattson | August 28, 2020


For as long as there have been salespeople, there has been data to analyze about the process they use to bring in business. The only issue has been how effective leaders are at drawing conclusions from that data.

All too often, companies don’t make effective use of the information available to them from their sales teams. They fail to generate the most relevant data points… or they focus on information that is familiar to them but less than meaningful. These common mistakes result in, among other things, the dreaded “garbage in, garbage out” sales forecast. So: How can you as a sales leader use data to support both the organization and the sales team? Here are four questions that will help you to do just that.

Question One: Do you have a sales process? This may sound like an obvious requirement, but most organizations we work with do not have a sales process! If you start breaking down data without a systematic process in place for generating sales, the data you come up with isn’t going to do you a lot of good. Note that a sales process gives people the steps they need to follow, from start to finish, to create revenue for your organization. Every company has a slightly different process; you can think of the data generated by the various steps of your sales process as being like an MRI. When it’s done properly, that kind of comprehensive scan is going to tell you what you need to know about the internal workings of your sales team. But to be useful, the analysis must line up with a functioning sales process!

Question Two: Have you identified your expectations? What are your expectations for each of the phases of your sales process? Break the process into its constituent parts: lead development, also known as prospecting; qualification; and then fulfillment and servicing the account. These three phases can also be understood, in the enterprise world, as landexpand, and renew. So. What are the specific outcomes you want to see within each of those three areas? What are the behaviors that make those outcomes possible? What are the departmental benchmarks – meaning what are your time-bound goals for behaviors that will land new business, expand existing business, and renew relationships with your best customers? Once you know that, you can break it down. What are the team benchmarks? What are the individual benchmarks? Set specific expectations. Hopefully, you’ve overlaid some competitive information, and you are meeting or exceeding the relevant industry benchmarks as you work with your team to identify the right goals. Once you have set the expectations, you will have something to compare the relevant real-world data to. (See Question Three.)

Question Three: Are you measuring the right stuff? Get meaningful data. Specifically, make sure you are getting data that connects to a specific step of your sales process. Make sure you are using your CRM system as a source of actionable business intelligence… not as a demonstration of compliance on the part of your salespeople. Make sure you are tracking leading indicators (activities that predictably generate revenue, such as having an initial voice-to-voice conversation with a decision maker) not just lagging indicators (activities that connect to revenue that has already been generated, such as filing a signed contract). Often, leaders spend too much time on lagging indicators and not enough in leading indicators. Identify the leading indicators that spotlight the effectiveness of a particular step of your sales process (such as the number of times a salesperson begins a discussion about the budget). Use that data to strategize improvement. What specific tools, resources, and behaviors will help everyone ensure the needle is moving in the right direction? How will you share the data in a way that inspires salespeople to monitor – and control – their own behavior?

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Question Four: Are you looking at a problem… or a symptom? This is perhaps the most important question of all. Is the data you’re examining pointing you toward an actual problem, or is it identifying the inevitable result of some underlying issue that you haven’t yet addressed? Sometimes, what seems obvious about a sales team’s needs isn’t obvious at all. Let me give you an example: Often, companies will look at their presentation-to-close ratio, realize that it’s low, and then self-diagnose based on that. They’ll say to themselves, “Okay, we need some help; we need to get better at delivering our presentations.” They think that’s the right response to what the data is telling them. But time after time, we find that’s not the problem.  When we do some digging, what we generally uncover is that they have a poor qualification process. The majority of those people they’re presenting to, they shouldn’t have been presenting to in the first place. They had no opportunity to win. Remember: There is a time to step back and get some help in assessing what the data is really telling you.

New technologies in CRM, in artificial intelligence, voice intelligence, and in any number of other areas are giving us all access to much deeper analyses than we could have made just a few years ago. As sales leaders, we can get the right data up on the dashboard… we can use that data intelligently… and as a result of what we learn, we can do a better and better job of leading our teams and our organizations in the direction they need to go. That starts with asking ourselves the four questions I’ve shared here – so we can avoid the all-too-common mistake of trying to land the plane without an instrument panel!

Interested in learning more about how you can utilize technology and data to inform your organization’s sales process? Learn why Sandler partnered with Gong to bring a measurable, data-driven approach to sales learning programs.