Stop Giving Sales Presentations (Have Sales Conversations)

  If you are teaching, leading, selling or speaking, your purpose is to engage your audience. Above all, you want to grab their attention and get them involved. Your prospect, client, customer, employee, team member, or student has to be engaged or they won’t buy your product, act on your idea or implement your plan. Without engagement, there is no influence. In the spirit of engagement, I believe that we should move from giving sales presentations to having sales conversations. There’s a huge difference between the two. A sales presentation, by definition, is a monologue, while a sales conversation is a dialogue—it involves both parties and the emphasis is on the buyer, not the seller. I know we have all done this before. We give a sales presentation (a monologue) and then at the end we ask, “Do you have any questions?” There is nothing about that model that makes it about the audience; nothing that makes them part
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7 Reasons Talented People Stay

Building a thriving business is more than having a great product or unique service. The great differentiator in today’s world is your people. So finding talented people is important but keeping talented people is crucial. Talented people will always have opportunities- so how do you get them to stay? Talented employees stay because they are: 1. Paid Well 2. Appreciated 3. Listened to 4. Promoted 5. Involved in decision making 6. Mentored 7. Challenged If you look at that list – the takeaway to me is that your leadership approach will ultimately determine whether your talented people stay or leave. Remember – Partnership is The New Leadership Save
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Learn to Communicate Assertively

Correct communication is key to success in any type of leadership.  But often, we run into individuals who miss the mark.   A passive communicator doesn’t speak up!  They don’t allow their voice to be heard and are often overlooked.  They leave the conversation with the mindset “You’re ok, I’m not.”   An aggressive communicator will dominate communication, using body language, loud speech and intimidation to steer a conversation to suit their needs. They leave the conversation with the mindset “I’m ok, you’re not.”   Assertive communication is what we are aiming for.  An assertive communicator makes sure their voice is heard, but also all the other voices around them. They set the tone of open communication, creating a relaxing environment where real work can be accomplished. They leave the conversation with the mindset “You’re ok, I’m ok.” What’s your communication style? Passive communication often leaves us feeling unheard &
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4 Steps to Effective Networking

 Step 1. – Focus on the 1 you are talking to. Don’t look around the room or be distracted by your phone. Focus only on the 1 person in front of you. Step 2 – Follow the rule of 2. In an effort to make the conversation about them & not about you. Anytime they share something about themselves, ask 2 questions before you share anything about yourself.   Step 3 – Say their name 3 times. This will help you remember their name, so weave it into the conversation 3 times.   Step 4 – Do something 4 them. Find a way to connect them to someone, share an article or book they would enjoy – find a simple way to do something 4 them.
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Are You A Leader Who Enables or Empowers?

I believe the most important leadership role anyone has in this life is that of a parent. As a parent my ultimate goal is to raise productive, self-sufficient adults, who go on to achieve and contribute more to the world than I do. If you think about it, shouldn’t that be the goal of every business leader as well? Ralph Nader said, “The function of leaders is to produce other leaders not just other followers.” And that is the essence of a true leader – is one who not only inspires followers but empowers them to go on to be great leaders. So how do we do that? Well, let’s think about it from a parents perspective and there are three simple strategies that I think move us away from enabling and into the empowerment process. #1. Allow For Collaboration in Decision Making As a parent you need to let
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Four Reasons Leaders Are Readers

I was recently in the CEO’s office of a billion dollar company and on his desk were a stack of books. I asked him what he was reading and with excitement he grabbed a book and told me all about it. Then on a plane ride home, I was seated next to the Vice President of an international business and we discussed the book she was reading and her favorites she had read recently. As we are talking she said a phrase that I have heard over the years – Leaders are readers. I have also heard it said – Earners are learners. Regardless of how you say it, I have found that a great habit of the highly successful is that they are always reading and growing. There are four main reasons that leaders are readers. 1. Leaders read for Enlightenment. Books can be an amazing source of wisdom,
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Choose Your Words Wisely

Have you ever thought about the connotations of the words you use? Words have an innate power. Words sell and words repel. Words lead and words impede. Words heal and words kill. When I lived in Portugal and learned to speak Portuguese, the leader or our mission made a rule that we couldn’t use the word “Dificil” which means difficult. Instead he had us use the word “desefiador” which means challenging. At the time I didn’t think much about it but now I realize the genius in it. When things are difficult you feel defeated, but a challenge is something you step up to meet. The connotation of those words changed our mindset. In my house we don’t say, “I can’t” It’s a simple thing but I don’t want my kids to mentally stop themselves when they have the capacity to do it. I don’t want to allow myself to
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You Can’t Elevate Yourself By Putting Others Down

  One of the biggest problems in our society today is a false belief that you elevate yourself by putting others down. You see this in politics. It is almost comical when you watch a political debate; when a candidate is asked a question, they typically respond by bashing their opponent and they never answer the question. But it goes beyond politics. In business, I hear people who bash their competitors and somehow believes that makes them look better and create loyalty. It actually does the opposite. One example in our culture is the portrayal of men. Watch any sitcom and they portray men as lazy, stupid and helpless. This is another example of a flawed approach that stemmed from feminism. Feminism is about elevating and empowering women and we don’t do that by bashing men. In all scenarios – remember – you can’t elevate yourself by putting others down.
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The Foundation For Sales Success

What is the key to success in sales? Is it product knowledge? Is it selling benefits instead of features? Is it your ability to ask questions? To present? All of these are important skills and make an impact but I would say there is a foundational key to success for any sales person regardless of what they are selling. In my twenties I built a multi-million dollar sales organization. In my thirties I have spoken for hundreds of sales organizations. I have spoken to salespeople who sell cars, insurance, skin care, advertising, software, houses, medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, tractors, beverages, pest control, home security, nutritional supplements, clothing, and much more. The commonality that all of them share and the key to sales success is recognizing that Business Is Based On Relationships.  Our ability to build relationships, to win people over and to make connections is the key to success in all
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10 Ways to Become a More Influential Leader

No matter your company, or the role which you play in it, you are in the business of people. Because of that, leadership is a driving force behind growing your business.  You become a solid leader through influence, but you become a successful leader by using influence to engage and inspire others. Here are my top ten ways to become a more influential leader. Understand that Leadership is not about you – it is about the people that you lead Become the most passionate person that you know – it will be contagious! People do business with people they know, like, trust and VALUE – Be the one to add value Constantly work to develop yourself. Leaders are readers – Earners are Learners When it comes to your communication – change your goal from perfection to connection with your audience Have integrity – Do what you said you would do,
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