Vermont this past weekend probably had the best back-to-back two days on the hill for this season.
Superb blue skies, warm temps, perfect snow, smiling faces, barbecue on the deck. Exceptional! There was nothing better than Saturday...except Sunday.
So far, an unbelievable winta' at Stratton, and another month to come until closing on April 14th.
People ask me all the time about Vermont, and, all the time, it's hard to answer questions given that there are really three Vermonts-Southern, where I live, which is all about small town America; Burlington, the Big City, and the Northeast Kingdom, which is very sparsely populated with folks who actually like living on the frontier-picture a just slightly warmer Alaska. In comparison, there are more people living in Boston than in the entire state of Vermont.
- With <9,000 people, Montpelier is the smallest US state capital.
- Montpelier is also the only U.S. state capital without a McDonalds.
- Of cows/people, VT has the greatest number of dairy cows in the US.
- Vermont's largest employer isn't Ben and Jerry's, it's IBM.
- Vermont is the largest producer of maple syrup in the U.S.
When the flatlanders start to think about maple syrup like now during mid-March, typically sugaring has already been going on for a month or more. A few spring metrics to think about the next time you notice those buckets on the maple trees:
- Maple Syrup is 100% organic
- The same calcium content as whole milk.
- Only 40 calories per tablespoon.
- Trees for tapping are at least 40 years old.
- Each tap gives 10 gallons per season producing 1 quart of syrup.
Sugaring is not for the faint of heart what with slogging through the snow, hauling hundreds of gallons and then watching...and watching, and watching...the heating and evaporation to just the precise mix of temp, color, while balancing the elasticity of pricing these bottles of liquid gold with the forecasted impact of supply and demand.
Pretty similar actually to any sales planning process, the thinking going on behind the numbers and the actual detailing of the sales metrics which are taking place right now as everyone of us works through the next ten critical days left in the quarter.
And just as soon as March becomes a quick pat on the back, we jump into Q2, which is, in my coaching play book, the most critical planning period of the year since it provides one shot at recalibrating, readjusting and rebalancing both new and proven tactics against the strategies which were laid down way back in November.
A few Q2 sales planning questions you need to answer...
- What's the split between New/New and Existing Expansion I need?
- What's the Number of Opportunities / Accounts Won?
- What's the ratio between MQOs to Discovery meetings for Q2?
- What do I need for cold calls / Marketing-generated leads?
- What's the equation between Qualify and Close?
- ...and a myriad of other metrics that need to be planned out right now.
Whether it's about the population of Vermont or the ability of the maple syrup farmers to tap just the right number of trees to yield Vermont Gold or the detailed Q2 sales and marketing planning that needs to be done during the next two weeks, the ability to track metrics and data always define success. As a result, our experience is that the best planned and prepared salespeople will always bring home the most gold!
Take Just 90 Minutes This Weekend
- Run through your Q1 metrics and your almost-there results.
- View the results 100 feet off the deck with an objective eye to Q4.
- Adjust and add to your tactics where you need to.
- Next Monday announce an offsite planning day for the 1st week of April
- Figure it out, get commitment and lock the new numbers down!
Good Selling for the balance of the quarter!
-Remember: Q1 always sets the tone, pace & success for the year
Save the Date: October 6th-8th-Click Here
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It's that time of year again, when I'm searching for six company
projects for my seniors and juniors marketing class at Tufts for the
fall semester. For the last six years, I've had the privilige of being a professor of Marketing at Tufts in a fast-paced, highly interactive course where the students are continuously immersed in the real world of today's marketing strategies, tactics and tools.
One of the means through which this is accomplished is that six teams of five students are focused for the 13 week semester on completing complex marketing projects for companies in the NE geography. These no-cost projects vary widely from developing market research reports, to new product launches, to creating full marketing plans for small and middle market businesses.
If you are at all interested in participating for the fall semester, just email me at email@example.com, and I will send you an outline of what's involved.