How do you get the best from everyone in your team?

As a manager, you want to get the best from everyone in your team. But they are all individuals with different personalities, so to achieve this requires insight and adaptability on your part to succeed.

Trying to communicate in just one style…your preferred style is not enough!

In the previous podcast and blog post we discussed four main communication styles and linked them to four animals for a bit of fun, but more importantly to help you to quickly identify people’s individual communication preferences.

In this article, I want to dig deeper into each of these communication styles and share how to adapt your way of communicating, so that it really resonates with each individual in the team.

The first one was the Monkey/Creative individual, this was the person who is energetic, full of life, has creative ideas and an outgoing personality.

What’s the best way to treat them?

Well, show your enthusiasm for the task or goal at hand. Sharing that emotion with them is very important.

Recognise too how they tend to value themselves. They access themselves by feedback, applause and recognition. This is very big in their world and it’s how they gauge whether they are doing well or not.

So, look for opportunities to offer genuine commendation and vocalise it.

Also, make it possible for them to get ahead quickly on new tasks and face new challenges. Don’t make things boring or staid for them, otherwise they could quickly lose that beautiful enthusiasm and creativity.

How can you help them to improve?

We mentioned giving them recognition, but they also need structure within which to reach the goal. So, map out some steps for them to work too so they can focus and not lose their concentration.

How to lead them?

When you think about leadership with these types of individuals, lead them in a way that inspires them to bigger and greater accomplishments. But you need to have short-term targets so they can hit these steps along the way.

Now let’s look at the LION/ Achiever character, this is the high-achieving individual focused on tasks and results.

What’s the best way to treat them?

The best way to treat them is to give them the opportunity to be in charge. Always recognise they value themselves on the results or goals they achieve. Make it possible for them to get into competitive situations because they like to win. So, you need to allow an opportunity for this, don’t try to hold them back or restrict them, they will just get frustrated.

How can you help them improve?

Give them a position where they have to cooperate with others, one area they need to develop is to be more considerate of other people’s feelings and also work within a team.

How to lead them?

The most effective form of leadership is to allow them some space to do things their own way, that’s where they feel most confident and comfortable.

Consider now the DOLPHIN / Agreeable character, this individual is very loyal and supportive and needs a different approach.

What’s the best way to treat them?

The best way to treat them is to be supportive and show you care about them. This is really important to them, knowing you have a personal interest in them and good relationship is critical to them performing at their best. You need to recognise that they tend to access themselves based on the quality of friends and relationships they have. If they feel that other people in the team around them like them, then they must be doing the right things. So, you need to make it possible for them to feel relaxed, knowing you are interested in them succeeding. Take the time to explain the background and reasons for the task then they will fully support and engage with you.

How you can help them improve?

One way is by providing a structure of goals and showing them the methods to achieve and reach those goals. This ties in very nicely with the most effective way to lead them.

How to lead them?

You need to outline specific plans and activities that need to be accomplished. Then they will feel confident and comfortable to push ahead to achieve those goals.

Finally, with the ELEPHANT/Analyst character,

What’s the best way to treat them?

Well we know they love the details, so be prepared to give them lots of data and information, that’s how they feel comfortable. Recognise that they access and value themselves with a slightly different paradigm. That activity and keeping busy with cause results to fall into place.

So, what’s the best way to work with them? One thing to remember is that they don’t like to be pressured or pushed to make decisions. So, you need to allow them the opportunity to be let off the hook sometimes rather than pressured or cornered into making decisions quickly.

How can you help them improve?

There are several areas but one of the most important is to help them develop their communication skills, so they can relate better to other people. Some of the important points we have considered here will play a significant part in helping them communicate better.

How to lead them?

In terms of leading them, the most effective way is to give them a structured framework so there are clear parameters that they understand and feel comfortable with. To gain their respect and engagement, formulate and prepare your ideas or tasks in full detail. Then allow them time to digest the data and information and expect lots of questions before getting their commitment to move forward.

Next Actions for you to implement.

So, this has given you four different characters and the best ways to communicate with them. I want to encourage you now to think about the individuals in your team and look at identifying their preferred way of communicating. How you can adapt your style of communication to bring out the very best in them and so doing achieve rapid progress in record time towards your goals!

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How Discovering Your Own Communication Style Can Dramatically Impact Your Sales Results

In this week’s podcast I’d like to share some insights to help you discover your personal communication style or preference and the huge impact this can have in getting commitment and engagement from your colleagues and buyers.

Understanding how you come across when you communicate to others is fundamental to any long-term success in your career. This applies both to your important relationships internally with colleagues and externally with your prospective buyers and existing clients. Learning how you can develop your communication skills and relate in a much more effective manner with all the different personalities is a highly valuable asset.

Then next week, don’t miss the second article and podcast in this series, as I will dive deeper into this subject and focus in detail on how you can use these insights, either as a sales leader to lead, develop and communicate effectively with everyone in your team, achieving results in record time. Or as a salesperson to significantly increase your engagement with clients and reap the subsequent business growth you desire.

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If you’re not investing in your Sales Manager you’re missing a trick!

Investing only in frontline sales training won’t get you peak performance results. Today smart companies across the globe are waking up to an important fact.

They must invest and empower their sales managers to achieve maximum performance.

We must stop this erroneous notion that by promoting good sales people they will naturally become great managers. They won’t because ‘Sales Management’ is a completely different role.

So, here are 5 reasons why every company should be investing in training and developing their sales managers.

  1. Set the pace. – They are the ones that set the pace and create the atmosphere for the whole team to achieve high performance.
  2. Direct link between boardroom & field. – They are the ones who can effectively communicate the strategy and direction from the boardroom and translate that into meaningful sales activities to be implemented in the field.
  3. Know their numbers. – They must understand their sales figures, and be able to read them like a book! Spotting pipeline pitfalls and forecast potential blockages with the ability to help their team overcome them.
  4. Leverage their experience. – They need the tools and coaching skills for a strong Knowledge Transfer, developing everyone by multiplying their skills throughout the team.
  5. Breed Loyalty – A good manager will be able to win the hearts and minds of their team. This is another valuable quality when you consider the high cost and impact of staff retention on your organisation. The person in the role of sales manager can dramatically affects the bottom line, but they need to know the qualities required to lead.

When you think about these 5 points is very evident that investing and empowering your sales manager is the key to superb results.

For additional insights checkout, the attached visual – -The Essence of Thriving Sales Organisation’ and listen to the podcast – ‘Empowering your sales manager to lead the team.’

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Are you Leveraging the telephone technology – to its highest potential?

As we discussed last week creating powerful correspondence is a great way to engage with new prospects.

However, to get the maximum benefit from this activity you need to be really effective on the telephone. Unfortunately, today many people feel self-conscious about speaking on the phone. They hide behind email which is a shame because the telephone is one of the greatest tools for creating rapport and relationships with people.

Even more so today with the opportunity to hold interactive skype calls where you can have 1-on-1 meetings that are brief, friendly and engaging.

So, let’s think for a moment about the correspondence we created. If you haven’t seen this go to the previous podcast where you can see an example, which we will use for our telephone follow up today.

Usually, I recommend you arrange to do your follow up calls 48 hours after they receive your correspondence, so it’s fresh in mind.

Let’s look at a successful formula to make this call, and we’ll take the toughest example – someone you have written to but have never spoken with before.

I would never cold call them without having written a personal letter or email to them in advance. I like to do this for two reasons.

Firstly, you feel more confident when you’ve taken the time to write a professional letter to someone.

Secondly, it builds trust in the other person that even if they haven’t seen the correspondence sent they will give you time to explain why you wrote to them in the first place.

So, let’s look at what to say on your follow up call. First of all, you want to introduce yourself by name and your company. But here’s something most people don’t do, they don’t give their prospect a ‘first call notice’. What do I mean by that? Well, you need to say something like, “you and I haven’t had the opportunity to speak before, but I wrote some correspondence to you last week”. By saying you haven’t spoken before, you’re giving them that ‘first call notice’ it lets them relax mentally. If anyone has called you and given their name but you don’t remember it you automatically start to go through a mental rolodex! You are thinking to yourself. Do I know Peter, should I remember him? Etc., etc. They’re not concentrating on what you’re saying. So, the first call notice is important to avoid this happening.

The next area to focus on, just like the sequence of your letter, is your industry expertise. You could say something like, “I’ve been working with other professionals in your sector for x number of years now”. Then you want to site job title expertise, you can do this by saying, “some of the concerns I’m hearing from other sales professionals in your position are…”

Then you can mention some of the challenges you highlighted in your letter.

After mentioning those key issues, you can show how you can help simply by saying, “I’ve been able to help our clients solve these challenges in a number of interesting ways.

Finally, you want to create curiosity and give an invitation.  Simple say, “I’ve been sharing some of these experiences and insights recently and I’d welcome an opportunity to learn more about your own objectives and see if these ideas can add value to your operation. When do you think there might be a good time to have a chat about that in the next couple of weeks?

This follow up approach is simple, it follows the same format and content of your letter for the telephone call, you’ve shown how you can add value and offered to share some specific examples with the person to help improve their business.

All of this correspondence and telephone work is focused on how you can help the other person. You’ll notice I spent very little time talking about myself my company, products, service or how great we are!

So, with this in mind I wish you great success in leveraging the telephone to create some fantastic new business relationships.

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Creating powerful correspondence that engages them every time

How much of the unsolicited mail or email you receive goes in the rubbish bin?

I’d like to bet pretty much 90% does. Why is that? Well, typically because this correspondence is focused on them. It all about ‘How good their company is, their products or service.’

So, I’d like to flip ideas on this conventional marketing approach on its head and instead focus on stimulating interest but focusing on the key issues or interest of your customers.

But what should you include to produce this type of communication?

Here are the 4 steps to create engaging correspondence.

  1. Introduce yourself personally and your organisation.
  2. Note your expertise in working with their peers in the sector.
  3. Share how you have helped overcome key business issues they face.
  4. Invite to share some fresh ideas and experiences to see if they can add value.
  5. Include a date & time you will call to see if the issues were relevant and of interest.

Next, think of the deliver method you will choose, most people will email this content, but how many emails to you receive in a day? 30-40? And if it’s from someone you don’t know there’s a strong likelihood you will simply hit the delete button before even reading it!

How many personally addressed letters did you receive last week? Probably none right or this month even?

So, why not consider writing personal correspondence to prospects using quality stationary and even hand-write the envelope for a personal touch. Automatically, you start to differentiate yourself as someone who’s thinking differently from the herd.

Be sure to follow up at the appointed time (1-2 days from delivery) as promised.

Last week a client called me who initially rejected this as an old-fashioned snail mail approach. However, he was pleased to report some of his rookie salespeople had taken up the idea and written to twenty prospective clients. They received three calls back from prospects requesting meetings and following their own telephone follow ups a further two meetings had been arranged. He confessed he never thought this approach would work but now he’s glad they tried it out.

So, I encourage you to drop a line to some ideal prospective clients and start some new and engaging conversations this week!

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Is your approach to prospects creating interest or tension?

The vast majority of approaches to prospective clients either via emails, correspondence or telephone calls focus on you. Your company and how good you are or your product or service.

What’s the effect on prospective clients? Most of these marketing pieces don’t create much interest but rather they create tension in prospects.

So, I’d like to flip this on its head and use a different approach. One that is focused on their key objectives, the issues they face and the challenges they need to overcome to achieve great results.

Why do you want to do this?

Ultimately when you are approached you’re thinking about “WIIFM” What’s in it for me?
So, you need to stimulate interest first rather than concentrating on the immediate action you’d like the person to take. For instance, they probably already know you’d like a meeting or telephone call with them to discuss your product or service.

The problem is it’s far too early in the conversation for them to make a commitment, until they really understand what’s in it for them.

So, how can you do this?

First of all, think about the new ways of marketing. In the past, marketing was focused on outbound activity. Generally, it was an interruption, either cold calling, cold emails or interruptive ads. But today’s sales generation are really focused on inbound marketing. They are creating interest and gaining permission from the customer either through blogging, publishing relevant articles and generally creating value for the customer.

So, we need to think, are our activities still relevant and effective?

Any marketing activity that pushes services or products on customers is really using that old outbound technique. What we really want to do is use marketing techniques that rely on earning people’s interest instead of trying to buy it!

So, what I’d like you to take away from this article is really a change of mind-set. Stop focusing on your company, business and what you want and make that shift to thinking about the challenges clients face and the unique value you can add to your prospective clients.

And I’m talking about amazing value. What value could you add that would make you irresistible in their eyes…challenge yourself to come up with answers to this.

So, they are thinking not just, “That’s a nice idea” but rather “Wow that would make a dramatic improvement to our business.

Next week stay tuned as I want to discuss creating powerful correspondence, ‘How do you write to engage people?’ and Secondly, are you using that amazing piece of technology The Telephone…How can you use it to create remarkable results.

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Powerful Prospecting 101

In this podcast, Peter discusses 6 powerful ways to maximise your prospecting efforts.

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How Do High Performance Sales Cultures Flourish?

In this podcast Peter discusses the first of three aspects for creating the environment for high performance sales cultures to grow.

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The Value Sales Managers Are Responsible Adding to Their Team

What is the value that sales managers are responsible to add to their team?

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What Today’s Customers Really Want from You?

Do you know what your customers are looking for and the 10 top qualities they are seeking? Listen to this podcast and to Peter discuss these attributes

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