I remember my first day of 7th grade at Sherwood Junior High in Memphis, Tennessee like it was yesterday. That was the day I met Bud Garrett. Coach Garrett was the coach at Sherwood and he coached baseball, basketball and football. I remember walking past this tall, imposing man and him saying to me, “Boy, you need to go out for football. Be at practice after school today.”
Last week I once again watched Dr. Amy Cuddy's Ted Talk called, "Your Body Language Shapes Who you Are". I was prompted to watch it after reading two articles she recently wrote about how important warmth and competence are in order to truly connect with people. The last 5 minutes of her 21 minute Ted talk, which I believe is one of the most watched Ted talks ever, are simply riveting and I believe should be required viewing for anyone interested in achieving more.
The other morning as I was reading a terrific blog called, “Leadership Freak”, I was reminded how obstacles, failures and setbacks are actually huge opportunities for growth, development and future success. The blog espoused a 3 step system for dealing with failure and the questions they suggested we ask ourselves in these situations were powerful. I highly recommend the blog and it certainly endorsed the notion that failure can be a great teacher - IF WE LET IT BE!
This week I received a link on my LinkedIn profile that asked the question, “Who is the best manager you have ever worked for?” That was a difficult question for me to answer because the first three leaders I worked for during a 14-year span were the most incredible leaders one could imagine. Without their guidance, encouragement, and belief in me as an individual and a future leader, I would never have had the career I have enjoyed. As I was thinking about this question, I finally decided that each of them had a gigantic impact on me and it was impossible for me to distinguish who had the "most" impact.
In all my years of selling I have never met a sales person that wasn't looking for a good idea. Every sales person wants an idea that will help them be more effective and more successful with clients and prospects. Reading books is a terrific idea as is subscribing to blogs.
Last week Delta Point celebrated a huge milestone – our 15-year anniversary of business! When my wife and I first started the company, neither of us could imagine that Delta Point would enjoy so much success nor grow as it has in 15 years. We have worked and consulted for some of the best companies in the world, and we have done great work all over the world. We’ve had terrific people working with us and we’ve had great clients. Because Delta Point has been in business for so many years, I’m occasionally asked what tips I might have on how to be successful in business.
One of my closest friends and a person I deeply admire is Buzz Williams, Head Basketball Coach at Virginia Tech. Buzz is a huge quote person and if you follow him on Twitter you will have the privilege of learning from his voracious reading habit. He shared a quote with me one day from Hall of Fame Coach George Raveling that really resonated with me. "Be big enough every day to face the truth about yourself, your team, your family and your life."
What can we as leaders do to improve our sales results? How do we get our salespeople to deliver the right message on every call? Where should we focus our limited resources (time, funding, training, etc.)? When contemplating issues such as these—how to improve market share and grow sales—many leaders focus on the salespeople. That’s logical because salespeople are critical to generating sales. But more often the other crucial group involved in selling is overlooked—the sales managers whose charge is to drive sales and develop the competencies of their sales people.