EXPLOREMY LIBRARY
Business & Finance
ThinkSales

ThinkSales November 2016 - Issue 26

ThinkSales magazine caters exclusively to the needs of sales management leaders. The editorial objective of ThinkSales magazine is to empower, motivate and inspire sales leaders with strategic knowledge, tactical skills, management insights and exposure to international sales and management thought-leadership and best practice necessary to lead sales organisations to achieve higher and sustainable sales results.

Country:
South Africa
Language:
English
Publisher:
Thinksales Corporation Ltd
Frequency:
Biannually
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1 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
expert contributors

ANDRIS ZOLTNERS is a professor emeritus at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management in Evanston, Illinois. He is also a co-founder of ZS Associates, a global business consulting firm headquartered in Evanston, and a co-author of The Power of Sales Analytics. Learn more about Andris at www.zsassociates.com ANTHONY IANNARINO is the President and Chief Sales Officer for Solutions Staffing and the MD of B2B Sales Coach & Consultancy, a boutique sales coaching and consulting company. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Capital University’s School of Management and Leadership where he teaches Persuasive Marketing and Social Media Marketing in the MBA programme. Learn more about Anthony at www.b2bsalescoach.com JONATHAN HALL is responsible for workplace research and development, workplace strategy design and the marketing of workplace design solutions at Tower Bridge. His…

2 min.
the execution trap

A BUSINESS REALITY An obvious fact and one that is well-known to every executive tasked with growing revenue in their organisations is that it’s not getting any easier. And that is before we even begin to feel the potential impacts of Brexit, a Trump administration and a South African economy projected to grow by less than 1% in 2017. REALITY ON THE GROUND The approach of sales organisations facing business challenges is to focus on working harder and faster and yet, despite these efforts, many companies across multiple industries are finding that results are not tracking with the increased effort. The burning question is why? ENGINEERING FOR EXECUTION The challenge many sales organisations face today is they are, quite simply, not engineered for succesful execution. The problem is not in their sales strategy, product or solution, but…

5 min.
get to the root of work stress

Open your heart to what life offers instead of what you want it to offer, be curious rather than judgemental and learn to love life as it is. There isn’t a working person among us who doesn’t deal with stress — whether you’re an entrepreneur, a freelancer, working for a struggling startup, or clocking in working for a company, work stress is inevitable. But where does this stress originate, and how do we deal with it? Most guides to stress will give you some actions to take: exercise, sleep well, eat healthily, meditate, and do some yoga at your desk. These are all amazing, and you should do them. However, I’m more interested in getting at the root of stress. Dig down, ferret out the cause, and work with that directly, rather than treating…

1 min.
make new habits 20 seconds easier to start

WHAT STOPS YOU from making the changes you know you should? Shawn Achor, the bestselling author of The Happiness Advantage, says it’s “activation energy.” That’s the energy it takes to initially get your butt off the couch and to the gym. The hard part is getting started. If you reduce the amount of activation energy required, tough things become easy. THE 20-SECOND RULE Achor advises making new habits 20 seconds easier to start. He would sleep in his gym clothes with his trainers next to the bed, and it made him much more likely to exercise when he woke up. “If you can make the positive habit three to 20 seconds easier to start, your likelihood of doing it rises dramatically,” he says. He also realised that having to remove his guitar from his cupboard…

6 min.
5 principles to create customer experiences that count

A customer strategy goes further. It is the delivery of distinguishing value and experience to a chosen set of customers, along with the offerings, channels, operating model and technology you will need. After losing a few deals to a rival, the CEO of a technology solutions company turned to his leadership team to ask what was going wrong. “Our products lack key features”, sales replied. “The sales team doesn’t have the right relationships”, marketing responded. “Our offerings are too expensive”, finance explained. None of these answers seemed exact. The products were developed in the most cost effective way, had high ratings from analysts, and included new features that people raved about. So the CEO finally called his customer and bluntly asked: “Why did you give this deal to our competitor?” The response:…

6 min.
run sales on data, not hunches

For customer feedback to be useful to B2B suppliers, it must give managers the information they need quickly, and there must be mechanisms to ensure that the company acts on and incorporates the feedback into future decisions. Decision-making at big B2B companies is often skewed by anecdote and myth: A worried report from the most vocal sales person about a competitor’s latest move; a customer complaint that happened to be fielded by a senior executive. The flow of one-off stories often has outsized influence on how senior managers shape the firm’s interaction with customers. Anecdotes gain that stature because managers often lack timely, reliable information. The typical approach to gathering customer feedback involves a once-a-year survey that produces a wave of analysis and reports, but usually is based on too many of…