4 Challenges and 4 “Tips” for 2014 – Part 2

So how can you stay on top of Sales and Management for 2014? (Challenges 3 and 4 cited on our Growth Strategies survey.)

If these are your challenges this year, read on here for 6 more tips and tools to help you!

P.S. If you missed Part 1 of this blog – and are struggling with People and/ or Money  – just click here.

#3 – Management 

Finding the time to “manage” – was #3 on CEO’s lists for 2014.   A few suggestions if time is “escaping” you?

a) Re-visit the Execution Checklist – Wouldn’t it be great if you had more free time on your calendar? Verne Harnish’s RH Execution checklist was designed to help give you more time.  If the last time you looked at it was early last year, OR you can’t remember – it’s time for a review.  Maybe at your next monthly?  Certainly at your Mid-year review.  What are you doing well that’s on the list?  And where are you struggling?  HINT: If you don’t have #2, 7 and 9 nailed down, those disciplines would be a great place to start.

b) Manage your Meeting Rhythms – Are you and your team beginning to dread meetings? Meeting Rhythms can support great Management OR be a ball and chain, if not done correctly.  Another great “review” item for you.  Take a few minutes and evaluate your schedule of meetings.  Have you lost sight of the objectives of each meeting?  How effective are they? Who’s participating and how they’re helping you (or not!) to communicate what needs to be communicated?  Pat Lencioni’s schedule (from “Death by Meeting”) has always been a favorite of mine so check his suggestions for the right rhythm and objectives and if you’re still struggling, we’re happy to help!

c) Sign up for the CBI Group’s Talent Seminar series – Chris Burkhard and crew have got some great people management tips to share that will help you and your team be more efficient and effective as managers.  The next one, “Managing a Contingent Workforce” is coming up on June 3rd.  Look for the invite here

#4 – Sales  

Filling the pipeline with qualified leads was our fourth “high priority” item.  Of course, great sales behooves the question of how robust of a lead generation process you have in place.  If this is a priority challenge for you, here’s a few resources that can help:

a) Learn to be an awesome Lead Generator – There’s a lot of great tips there to becoming a better lead generator versus just an order taker.  The trick to ensure that you have adequate revenues and are growing is not just about closing.  Take the questionnaire here to find out how you can improve.  Click here to learn more.

b) Advance order Dave Power’s new book, “The Curve Ahead” – ­ Coming out this summer, Dave’s book isn’t just about strategy and innovation, it’s also got some great marketing and lead gen tools that we’ve been using with our clients with great success. Here’s a link for more info on the book.  Look for the chapter on creating a “repeatable growth engine” or check out his blog here.  Can’t wait?  Drop us a line and we’ll give you some insights – in advance!

c) Define your sales process – so that you’re not wasting your time with unqualified prospects.  Use the “100 Questions” exercise from Kevin Daum to help you refine who the ideal customer is, where they hang out and how they buy.  Not only will you be clearer in your “asks” when looking for referrals from current customers, but you’ll also have a checklist that you can use to quickly eliminate a bad prospect from your pipeline.

Happy 2014!  Let us know how you do!

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