Beyond Networking

As a sales person you are fighting for the win. You follow the best possible practices, you out learn and out hustle all competition to land the sale and hopefully through excellent product and/or service quality convert that one sale into an account with a chain of future sales.

There is just one big problem with all of the above. No matter how well you perform you are always giving your customer one final thing, an invoice.

The customer has a direct responsibility, to pay the invoice and as such will endlessly be on the look out to ensure top performance on your part, while constantly being on the lookout for who is willing to outperform you on product, service or price.

You job it to then work toward developing customer loyalty, which on a good day is a tough challenge, unless you are practicing the ultimate in value delivery to your customer as follows…

Bring your customers new revenue.

Wait a minute, as a seller my job is to sell, get paid and line up the next sale, there is no place in the sales process for the process to work backwards, they pay you, and not you pay them. And in this singular logic lies the magic of bringing your customers value, in fact so much value that you are a hero, the receiver of the warmest smiles and a personally made cup of coffee by the gatekeeper and the receiver of your customers time any time you ask for it.

How is this done?

  1. Invest in “Quality Time” with you prospects and customers;
  2. Know your customers and what “to them” is the perfect customer;
  3. Know your customers problems and what “to them” perfect solutions look like;
  4. Connect the dots between those who need solutions (buy or sell) and those who deliver them;
  5. Literally arrange coffees between members of your network and make the contacts that bring new business relationships into existence, some are buyers of solutions, others the sellers;
  6. Systematically, over time you will have brought your prospects/customers more net profit than your own products/services cost, you are now a PROFIT CENTER to your customer.

Now how will the competition, compete with you. All they can do is sell, even if they drop their price to $0.00 they will not win because your value proposition is simply superior. You have brought and will continue to bring so much value to your customers that change will not even be considered unless you bring it.

Understand that this is not a “make sales fast” scenario, significant hard work is needed to generate the network and trust that leads to a true understanding of your prospects/customers’ needs so you are able to legitimately connect those inside your network with meaningful referrals, direct connections all powered by your personal recommendations.

Likewise do understand that the efforts when maintained over a prolonged period of time generate sales results and customer loyalty like you have never experienced before.

Change your value, change your world.

To learn how to apply this strategy to your business, get in touch.

Raising Employee Engagement Brings A 9% Increase In Operating Profits

Great but how do I make that happen? You start by shifting employee attitudes and to be more specific your attitude which is far and away the biggest single item that will determine your ability to get along with others, define what plans you will make and how you will execute those plans. The results of engineering this shift is well researched, for every 1% improvement in employee engagement you can see up to a 9% improvement in operating profit[1] .

Thankfully building a great attitude is a skill set than can be learnt and developed, allowing you to get significantly more out of life and business. Your positive attitude, or lack of, is what attracts or repels the people you come into contact with, and nowhere is this truer than in sales and customer service. We have all encountered the condescending, rude and/or fully disengaged sales person, these are examples of the negative engagement we encounter every day and unfortunately, too often found in our own businesses.

To take your engagement and your business to the next level you need to know three things:

  1. That a positive attitude is the result of deciding to have one;
  2. It will only work for you in direct proportion to the effort (learning, training, practicing and consistent application) you put into it;
  3. That attitude, both good and bad is highly contagious. As such when you develop and role model a positive and engaged attitude you lead others towards the same.

Do you have a positive attitude (most like to think they do, but, in fact do not)? Most do not understand that their lack of positive attitude and disengagement is keeping them from their own goal achievements.

Crafting a progressive attitude, and resetting your goals based on it will raise yours and others engagement levels and excel you towards the accomplishments you are hoping for.

Thanks for reading

Gerry L. Wiebe, Founder | President

[1] Sources: Gallop, US Bureau of Labor Statistics, IES & Towers Watson.

Is A Coffee Card Networking’s Secret Weapon?

In the last three weeks our company has secured three major new clients.

What’s unique is that each of these clients was referred to our company by a past or current client and our cost to land each one was just a cup of coffee.

How networking skills and a Coffee Card can be the secret weapons of business development and sales success.

Meeting for a coffee is a simple method of establishing a friendly meeting place and controlling costs.

Here is what you should be doing:

  1. Go out of your way to meet people, network purposefully and ask them what they do;
  2. If what they do is connected to what you (or anyone you know) might need, swap business cards and tell them to expect a coffee invitation;
  3. Go for coffee (somewhere convenient to them in terms of both time and place), pay with your coffee card and start asking purposeful questions that take time and detail to answer. Speak very little and listen a whole lot;
  4. During your meeting ask the question, “what is your perfect customer and how would you best like to deliver your product or service“;
  5. Use your speaking time to describe what your perfect customer is and how best you deliver your product or service to them;
  6. After 20 – 30 minutes have passed, coffee is over, and back to work you go. Your total time including driving was no more than 45 minutes and out-of-pocket costs are only about $5 – $7.

Now keep doing this, once a day with intent. Two times a day if you can. You’ll soon build up a network, not just of business cards but a working knowledge of what each and every contact does; and likewise they will know what you do.

Now Here Comes the Magic

When what someone does lines up with the needs of your network, you set up a coffee meeting with you and both parties. Again you buy coffee, you make introductions, confirm the connection, and give them both your best regards before leaving.

You have now provided unprecedented value. You have taken the risk of validating the supplier, and you have introduced a qualified buyer to the supplier.

In this process, aside from gaining a reputation as the value provider, it’s just a matter of time until you become the recommended supplier and land a job; this is when things get really interesting.

Over time your networking along with delivering great value to your customers will evolve into fans making raving recommendations about what you do. Now repeat, repeat, repeat. Build a network in which you deliver value first by connecting needs and your networking efforts will soon be landing you new business all for a bit of time and on a coffee card budget.

Thank you for reading

Gerry L. Wiebe, Founder | President