On Friday the 13th, and a beautiful spring day here in my tiny (p.769) town of Winhall (the state's name) or Bondville (the fed's name), the wake-up question for this morning is do we create our own luck?
Tags: sales coaching, student intern marketing projects, how to write a sales plan, marketing planning, sales management productivity, Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, 2022 sales planning, 2022businessplansuccess
"We've spent a lot of money on consultants that have not come close to the value received from your Tufts students working with us this semester!"
What's above is a direct quote this week from the VP of Marketing of a well-established healthcare analytics company with deeply experienced management and this was his comment to me and his project team upon completing their 13-week semester.
Tags: sales coaching, sales management coach, sales effectiveness, sales enablement, marketing effectiveness, how to close sales, Tufts marketing projects, interns for marketing projects, how to write a marketing plan, how to write a sales plan, sales readiness, Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, 2022businessplansuccess
At the beginning of the Q on April Fool's Day, it's important to first congratulate yourself for the quarter no matter what the results!!! Overall, a solid quarter for most everyone as we slowly crawl out of the pandemic. Clearly questions on the horizon with the impact of Putin's War, but still a relatively positive outlook for the balance of the year in which we've discovered workarounds for labor and supply shortages. At the end of the day, we still need to successfully sell things that create value, no matter what the outside environment is.
First, on what looks like a spectacular weatha' day here on the NH beach, I'm officially declaring today as "The End of Winta". I'm Done. It's Over. Totally Finished!
With a heat wave blanketing southern Vermont, it's 34 degrees out by the barn this morning at 7:00.
Like you, I'm prepping for a busy day with two critical sales events on today's calendar to actually close deals I've been working on for two months. Just need to get to that high five twice before 5 tonight. Totally confident...almost
Back at it this AM
I've missed blogging for the past two Fridays, but since I have a pretty good understanding of my audience, I also clearly knew that I would be at the bottom of the list of interests compared to...
Super packed weeks now leading up to the Thanksgiving break followed by added intensity on closing the year and delivering solid 2022 business, sales and marketing plans to the board in December.
Always have as your guide the simple fact that no plan is ever perfect, and that most often, it's the planning process of working together as a team, breaking down the walls and agreeing to focus on customer value which is the most important output.
At this time of year, we're running two or three planning sessions every week, and I thought that it might be helpful to take a more strategic and less tactical view of the winning value adders we're hearing about and working on this fall. There's no priority in the following bullets, and I'm very happy to add detail if you want to book some no cost time to discuss.
- Increased direct contact with prospects and customers
We're seeing Sales travel budgets for 2022 are increasing by more than 25% over 2021. Even though virtual meetings are much easier than in 2020 and added tech tools are coming on board very quickly, there's an increased push to travel. Much better planned and sharply limited to who travels, but travel is back especially for C level senior management. Our best companies are planning that 40% plus of the CEO's time will spent F2F with customers and prospects.
- Formal, more tightly defined WFH hybrid policies
20% of our customers have been working fine with no physical office for two years and plan to operate that way in 2022 into 2023. The best of the others have formal definitions with "shifts" of fixed 3/2 or 2/3 days a week detailed by department. The more smoothly operating with less personnel conflict problems also have mandatory vaccines policies. Yes, they have lost some employees, but that is now behind them and hiring plans are in place.
- Tighter market category, geo and size focus
If 2019 was "expansion", and 2020 was "hunker down" followed by "caution" in the first six months of 2021, what we are seeing for 2022 is very narrow organic growth definitions on sub-categories of market size, and tighter definitions of geographies. Cities, not regions or territories. Redefining "mid-market" on very tight definitions of employee counts/revenue/
- Sales & Marketing Processes
More and more fluency and much quicker adoption of formal Sales & Marketing processes anchored in highly integrated CRM and CMS platforms with the top choices being SFDC, MS Dynamics and our personal favorite Hubspot. Along with these processes, enhanced training and certification requirements for all salespeople.
- Strategy is nice, but tactics are critical
A "strategy" example for a primary 2022 initiative might be the adoption of a territory re-alignment or the beefing up the implementation tactics for an existing sales partnership model. Having said that 90% plus of the planning work we're seeing this fall is execution detailing of the Sales & Marketing basics with fingers-in-the-dirt definitions in the clarity of redefined Sales and Marketing playbooks, templates, and tech tools
- Increased focus on speed and agility
A question I was asked yesterday in a two-day Sales planning session was "rather than the second week in January, can we get this done by December 6th? My initial thought, given the huge amount of detailing that now needed to be done, was that "it couldn't be done" , followed in a minute, by "let's work to that date, roll out what we have and fill in the rest of the detailing in early January". In this case, we will double down on the assignments, and I'll bring in 3 or 4 of my interns do complete the research, the interviews and build out the Hubspot tools.
That's it for this AM working out of Boston's Back Bay this morning with an 8:00 AM start to the second day of our sales process building. A very exciting company with highly engaged and experienced management razor focused on 2022 objectives with a need to re-architect and build tighter processes and tools while tightening up on increased responsibilities. Wicked exciting, and just a great way to start the day!
Have a great day selling today!
If at any time, you have a need for a confidential sounding board for your 2022 planning process, just connect with me! Text or email me, and I'll quickly set up a call. I'm a very good listener, and we can get deep into tactics if you want. Obviously, no cost for a call or two; just an opportunity to listen intently and make a few recommendations based on decades of experience.
Tags: sales coaching, how to write a sales plan, sales effectivness, writing sales plans, sales readiness, forgetsalesstrategyfocusontactics, Derby Entrepreneurship Center@Tufts, 2022 business planning
First, and most importantly this morning is to congratulate you on finishing the Q on plan!
I never use the word "hopefully on plan", since "hope" has no place in today's fast-paced environment of Sales or Marketing. It's always great, of course, to be "lucky" every once in a while, but that's like hitting Powerball last Wednesday night or hoping the Patriots win this Sunday, so I'm going to stick with congratulations for finishing the Q on plan!
Summa's over, kids are back in school, vacation days are behind us until the end of the year, and we're back at it moving at 100mph, working hard, fingers in the crankcase oil, making sure the machine works perfectly between now and December. Different from Red above, for me personally, September through December is always the most exciting part of any year, and especially this year:
Tags: sales coaching, marketing effectiveness, sales management boot camps, improving sales productivity, Tufts ELS program, entrepreneurship, how to write a sales plan, marketing planning, writing business plans, freedom
It's been a superb summa' so far. Rain or shine, I don't really care; all I know is that any day from May through September beats February in Vermont!
A typical week has me working from NH the first half of the week and then mid-Wednesday afternoons I take the red summa' car to let the ponies run on the three hour drive to Vermont. I typically work from the VT house for the balance of the week returning to the NH beach at some point depending on the weatha'.