Spring into Selling More Productively this Spring

"Spring is nature's way of saying, 'let's party'" -Robin Williams

Teaching in my Science of Sales course last Thursday afternoon, only hours before the official start of Spring Break was in a word, "interesting", but with the help of visiting instructor and prior student, Erica Veino, senior Account Exec at BitSight, we worked through the fundamentals of her sales process.  For me, nothing is better than bringing back to Tufts alums from my courses who are now experienced sales professionals to teach exacting details in terms of process steps, sales tools, and sales models.  The mastery of those details experienced the prior week from alums Frank Yandrisevits and Shannon du Pont transitioned concepts into the practicality of how to model, train, manage and compensate salespeople.  

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Tags: Sales Best Practices, finding sales jobs, Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

Entrepreneurship for the rest of us

Last Tuesday, I wrote about The Tufts $100K Business Plan contest and its upcoming semi-finals which occurred last Thursday night. 50 Plus solid teams of students and faculty who had completed detailed applications, provided business plans and videos were narrowed down to 15, who will now be moving on to the Finals to be held on April 13th 6:00-9:00 PM.  I am looking forward to seeing you there!   For more information on last Thursday and just superb examples of the reality of what true entrepreneurship is, please click here for our LinkedIn post.   

Unfortunately, what has also occurred at exactly the same time is the very difficult situation caused by the mismanagement of the senior execs of Silicon Valley Bank, which continues to make waves in the tech market and will most probably cascade into the general banking community of small banks everywhere.  Clearly a very tough situation, and for those of us who start and invest in companies, the reality of corrections we will now need to take will slow down what we should be doing at this time of year...which is figuring out how to better market and sell our products and services.  

as managers, It's important to focus on what we can control

What we, as entrepreneurs, personally cannot control is the external banking environment and what will now assuredly result in in terms of tighter controls.  For many weeks ahead, we'll listen to the histrionics of politicians, bankers and administrators pointing fingers at one another while mandating increased controls, and that, in turn, will hopefully reign in bad management.   

In the meantime, what we can not only "control", but we can invest time and money into are a few of five business fundamentals of successful entrepreneurship.  Success in entrepreneurship for the rest of us always ...especially in difficult times...comes down to intense leadership focus in markets, in product, and in selling value to real people and not allowing the team to be distracted. 


Just a few ideas to think about this morning while a different type of a wicked weatha' storm encompasses us here in Boston!   



For more than a few ideas and real fingers-in-the-dirt details, take a look at our free Writing the Winning Sales Plan for 2023.  

Or you can just email me, and I will send you a free copy, and
, of course, you can connect with me at any time for questions, comments or just catching up. 


Connect with me at any time for some quick ideas and feedback. 

There's never a cost for a call or two, plus I love listening and talking about Sales & Marketing.   

Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts.






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Tags: angel investing, how to write a business plan, Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, entrepreneurshipfortherestofus, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

Entrepreneurship at its best!

I first heard the word "entrepreneurship" hanging out for years in the packed seats at MIT's Enterprise Forum every 2nd Wednesday in Room 10/250.  At the time, I was running a division of a large corporation and had zero idea of what an entrepreneur really did, or why they did it even though I grew up in a family of multi-generations of parents and GFs and GGFs who did exactly that.  We just never used that word, "entrepreneur"

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Tags: Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

Wicked Winta' Weatha'

With the snow now coming down heavily and with my birthday coming up next week, I am not going to recount the wicked storms I've been through.  

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Tags: Sales Optimization, Sales Best Practices, Sales Management Best Practices, how to close sales, entrepreneurshipfortherestofus, Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

Fingers in the dirt

Fingers in the dirt

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Tags: Sales Best Practices, Sales Hiring Perfectly, Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans, Derby Entrepreneurship Center

The Marketing of Me in '23

Yesterday on Groundhog Day, it seems that Punxsutawney Phil declared six more weeks of winter.  Certainly, as I sit here in Vermont this AM with the temp at 5 at 8:00 with a forecasted -25 ambient tonight, winta' like Phil is going to stick around for a while.  On balance however, this has been a very mild winter, and although I'm looking out at 18" of snow in front of my office window, when I left Tufts yesterday, there's no sign of any snow in Boston.  

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Tags: Sales Management Best Practices, Tufts Marketing, Teaching at Tufts University, Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

Just what is Inbound Sales & Marketing?

15 plus years ago, I learned the details of a new concept called "Inbound Marketing" from a young startup called Hubspot.  Since I had known co-founders Brian and Dharmesh, I started to explore their website that first summer just after we moved to the NH beach. I was amazed that they were making all of their detailed content about these very different strategies to be used in Sales and Marketing available on their site for free. I actually kept wondering when Hubspot would email me with a large invoice for all the content i was using, and then I discovered that providing free expert content itself was one of the pillars of Inbound. 

At the time, It made no sense to me to be giving away these jewels of expertise, but I would spend a couple of hours reading with the sun just coming up on the horizon at our new ocean house. I would then print everything out, load it into my beach bag and head out to the sand to devour what for me was an entirely new approach to sales and marketing than what I had learned as a salesguy. 

Process, Tools, Technology & Math seemed to me to be much more practical than just "stopping by and bringing Dunkin' & Doughnuts"

Piece by piece over the next year, I began to put these theories into hard practices coupled with Hubspot technology and realized that we could dramatically increase sales productivity for our customers...assuming that they wanted to learn and practice the science...and the discipline...of Inbound. 

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Tags: HubSpot Tips, Making Tough Choices, Inboound, Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning

Bored at Board Meetings? Change Something Now!

Very much looking forward to a board meeting, where I'm chairman, this morning at 10:00.  As is normal in most companies, positive advances in 2022, a couple of speedbumps and a positive outlook for 2023.  Most importantly, we have a management team and directors all solidly focused on both growth strategies and tactics for the year ahead.  This morning, management will take us through the operating details of their 2023 business plan following the preliminary plan that they presented for board guidance on December 20th.  

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Tags: Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

Friday 13th - Bad Luck or No Luck at All

If it wasn't for bad luck, you know, I wouldn't have no luck at all

There's a superb classic blues song sung by R&B greats, Ray Charles, Albert King, Stevie Ray Vaughn and my personal favorite Joe Bonamassa, about luck...or in this case...bad luck. 

On Friday the 13th, I thought that it was appropriate to kick off today as we enter the season of 2023 sales and business planning meetings with a couple of thoughts about luck.

Bottom line: Never plan on luck, optimism or even best efforts!  What will happen, will happen only as a result of you and your team's personal involvement and rigid commitment to a planning process this year.

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Tags: business plans, business planning meetings, Derby Entrepreneurship Center at Tufts, 2023 Business Planning

Back at it...in a time that needs courage!

Like many of you, I hunkered down for the past three weeks mostly working, plus I fully realized that anything I had to say in a business blog among a well-meaning tsunami of cards, emails and social posts focused on wonderfulness, warm wishes and joyful times would be not important in an important personal time. 

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Tags: Making Tough Choices, Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, 2023 Business Planning, 2023 Sales Planning, 2023 Marketing Plans

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