Every day, as part of my routine, before or after a sunrise run on the NH beach or on the VT dirt road, I take a look at LI and FB birthdays of the people I'm connected with.
Actually, the real number is 39, but I wanted to push, extend, and stretch it to 40, but in the real world of Sales, and more importantly in the world of our customers and prospects, it's impractical to think that we will actually have 40 selling days left in the year. Definitely 39 but probably only 35 given travel and prep days before Thanksgiving and Christmas, and then no experienced salesperson would ever plan on any of those days between Christmas and New Year's as real selling days. Even if all of the decision makers were working that week, experience has taught us that the forecasted probability of getting all the required signatures from the legal, finance and purchasing departments is lower than low!
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'.
Vermont is a tiny state with a very diverse grouping of residents. I'm not talking here about the 13 "gold towns" inappropriately named by an infamous prior governor who overtaxed the flatlanders who came to VT to ski. I'm also not talking about Burlington where 50% of the population lives. To know the real Vermont, one needs to get down into the dirt and understand their own grit and exceptionally hard work.
When one takes a look at the stats, it almost defies logic of why the state even exists...except for grit.
Tags: sales coaching, sales plan process, sales management boot camp, how to close sales, Tufts marketing projects, student intern marketing projects, how to write a sales plan, sales effectivness, Tufts Entrepreneurship Center
With 30 years of skiing anchored firmly in my Vermont winta' roots, I've now spent the last 25 years only snowboarding gaining a new love for old trails and new woods and parks that I would have never explored on skis. I still remember the taunts and laughs from my skier buddies I left behind, but as with anything new, I've learned to find the best coaches and study harder and longer than others.
This winta' morning, I find myself at the NH beach trading my Big Boy Ariens snowblower back in VT for shovels that fit NH winding paths and decks that overlook a very angry ocean. It will actually be good to grab some fresh air and quick exercise today between six zooms and a board meeting. One of the benefits of WFH.
Love winta'...but cannot wait for March 20th, the official start of spring and leaving behind dark mornings and getting back out into the VT woods with my chainsaw or looking for seaglass on the NH beach. I do love the rhythm and the variety of the NE seasons...most of the time
Tags: sales coaching, sales effectiveness, closing sales, marketing effectiveness, sales management boot camp, business coaching, how to close sales, improving sales productivity, sales success, how to write a sales plan, planningsalestodayinacovidworld
a bASIC law of physics -Time is finite!
- It can't be lengthened, shortened, bent, borrowed or stored!
- Nowhere is that more definitive as in Sales. The quarter ends, quota points on the board. Done!
- College the same way. The semester ends, grades are given, GPAs are calculated. Done!
At any university, a semester is about 13 weeks long with most classes meeting once a week, taking a total of 3 hours and bringing x number of credits depending on the university and the undergrad/grad level. Sounds like a long time, but then we need to mix in normal holidays, 3-day weekends, extended holidays, spring breaks, on-campus recruiting weeks and sometimes very short "winterships"...just to add to the confusion and the crush on time.
This Wednesday !
And so it was on Wednesday, that we held the last of our three hour "content classes" with guest speakers, Ashley McManus, a rock star alum from our course and now Marketing Director at Affectiva, and also our very close friend, Jamie Turner, author, professor, international speaker and blogger and star of the 60 Second Marketer, talking about the rapidly changing-by-the-minute-world of social. A great way to bring this semester to a close.
Also, on the last day of actual classes, I always provide my outgoing 30ish students with my thoughts on what comes next in the way of jobs, careers and business in general. These comments additionally sum up much of what we have been doing over the prior 13 weeks in what I call "the marketing of me" as we move back and forth between the world of applying sophisticated marketing expertise and tactics for their companies to doing the same for their first jobs next May or internships next summer. It all works!
Now, to finish the semester, the team has to complete their final presentations during the next two weeks and hand over their full marketing plans to the management at their companies. Six companies, five or six juniors and seniors on a marketing project team. The companies range in size from funded startups looking for full marketing plans to large corporations wanting to launch a new product or service into a new sector. Industries are very diverse ranging this semester from toys to cars parking to hospice to software in a variety of markets.
To make it all very real, management provides 40% of the course grades while I am my expert team of four TAs grade 60%. It all works!
If you are interested in applying for one of these semester-long marketing projects, just connect with me right away by text at 617-504-4222, email at jack@derbymanagement, or through LI, and I will send you the instructions and talk through any questions you might have. The syllabus and the projects go out to the new, already over-sold, class on December 26th. It is a very rewarding process on both sides of the zoom screen.
AS LONG AS WE'RE DISCUSSING TUFTS...
I have some gifted 2020 alums and many 2021 Seniors who are highly capable and are looking for entry level sales and marketing positions. My computer science majors are not having any difficulty in finding jobs, nor are my finance-oriented students who have been interning for the last two summers in Wall Street firms. Given the state of the current economic questioning, the same cannot be said for many of my other students and recent alums.
If you are considering hiring an entry-level person as...
- a marketing or sales intern part time for the spring semester and/or full time for the summer
- a full time marketing or sales person who graduated in May ( I have 2)
- a full time marketing person graduating with an MBA from BU in May.
- a full time marketing or sales senior graduating in December (I have 1)
- a full time marketing or sales senior graduating in May ( I have many)
Just connect with me since I have numbers of bright, hard-working, and driven individuals that I would highly recommend...all of whom, of course come with "The Jack Derby Seal of Approval" .
Have a great day selling today!
Please celebrate a very safe Thanksgiving !
CONFIDENTIAL SOUNDING BOARD
If at any time, you have a need for a confidential sounding board in business planning or for Sales or Marketing, just connect with me at any time. Text or email me, and I will quickly set up a call.
I'm a pretty good listener.
Obviously, no cost for a call or two; just an opportunity to listen intently and make a few recommendations based on decades of experience.
Mid-Point in the Semester...
As I approach the mid-term point in my classes at Tufts and MIT, once again, I realize how much of my personal time is as a professor teaching and working with my students, and how much I'm in a role of being a student myself in actually learning and applying new content.
Nowhere is this more evident than in my courses in Sales and in Marketing, which, even pre-Covid, were undergoing extraordinary rapid change every semester. It used to be that material I put together in the summer for the fall semester would be okay for the following spring semester, and I could use most of the same content for both Tufts and MIT. No longer! Last year, I changed 30% of the content going into the spring 2020, and then changed 70% of that material in prep for this fall's semester. This coming spring, I'll probably just start over from scratch again.
Now, deep into 2020, there really is only one mandatory rule that has not changed in Sales and Marketing, and that is to focus more heavily than ever before on marketing and selling customer value and not on you, your products or your services. 2019 evidenced the massive push into the strategy of "value selling" and the tools that go along with it, which has never been more critical than now when buyers are hyper-focused to the metrics of the value brought to their companies. Add to that the necessity of identifying and marketing directly to personas who today have zero time to waste with old-school salespeople and antiquated marketing tactics.
Darn cold at 29 last Saturday out by the Vermont barn. Jumped on the ATV to work through the woods and get up to the pond where I noticed that the swamp maples were already turning even though the big foliage week is still a couple of weeks from now. Always good for the Vermont economy when leaf-peeping ties into a long weekend.
Tags: sales and marketing best practices, sales coach, sales effectiveness, marketing effectiveness, sales management boot camp, how to write a sales plan, sales management productivity, writing sales plans, Selling Successfully in a Covid World
In my tiny town (pop. 735) in Vermont...called Winhall by the state and Bondville by the feds...there are only three bastions of commerce:
- the 7/11 gas station which doubles as a state liquor store
- the brand new Ace Hardware store branded "Lincoln Maples Hardware" to countrify it
- and the decades-old Winhall General Store
I've lived in this valley for a very long time with five generations before me, and over the years I've seen many owners of the general store come and go. There were a few serious Vermonters back in the day, lots of city folk who were looking to own "a little slice of Vermont" , but lasted only a couple of wicked cold winta's, and then there's Lorraine.
Like many, Lorraine came for the skiing and the beauty of Vermont and stayed to successfully build the business and support the town. She's done a remarkably consistent job of paying attention to the local Vermonters looking for coffee and a solid sandwich while knowing how to cater to the weekend flatlanders form New York and Jersey.
Tags: improved sales management, sales management training, sales management boot camp, improving sales productivity, sales management productivity, inordertoselltodayyoumustchange, planningsalestodayinacovidworld, whiteboardingmarketingsolutions, forgetsalesstrategyfocusontactics, whiteboardingsalessolutions