A lug nut snapped when changing a tire on one of my vehicles this week. So this morning at 8 a.m. I took it to get fixed. The repair shop said it would take about an hour. I considered, for a brief moment, sitting in the waiting room but based on the fairly dingy atmosphere I thought better of it.
So, I decided to go for a walk, after all, I could always use the extra exercise. As I was walking I saw an older gentleman probably 75-years-old or so on a skateboard. Slightly wobbly, but with both feet firmly planted on the board, he rode it down the street. A guy, maybe thirty years younger, was holding the older man’s elbow to keep him from falling.
As my path crossed with theirs the older gentleman looked up at me with a big smile on his face and said “I’m learning”.
What a great attitude and a great example that we need to always be learning.
I wish I would have stopped to take a picture so you could see the smile and the enthusiasm on his face. A reminder that not only should we always be learning but we should do so with happiness and excitement.
If you want to be more successful with your sales and marketing stop making it all about you.
Here’s a novel idea:
Make it about the customer!
Otherwise, I can guarantee you that:
- I won’t respond to your emails
- My company won’t consider your solutions
- My company won’t ever buy from you
- We will find someone who cares more about us
Yes, people send me two to three emails a day just like the one I screenshotted above. No, I don’t ever respond to them.
Why is there a large gap, a seemingly unfillable chasm, between sales and marketing?
Does it stem from different goals (or the perception thereof)?
- Marketing’s view on Sales’ objective: They just want to earn a commission, and could care less about anything else.
- Sales’ view on Marketing’s objective: They just want to make things look good, and could care less if it drives sales.
Bridging the gap means having the same objectives – real and perceived.
It starts with larger corporate objectives that individual team goals align with.
Sales and Marketing must explicitly understand how their goals help the overall company, and how they support the goals of other teams.
Sounds simple, right?
Way too often, in companies large and small, this isn’t happening.
Now is the time to develop your 2017 goals.
Corporate strategies must first be developed by executive management. Then team goals can be created to support the larger strategy.
Throughout the year, transparency via regular reporting will give improved visibility into how all teams’ goals support one another – thus bridging the gap.
Never stop learning. Advice heard over and over again. As part of my 30-Day “Do More” Challenge, I’ve placed a higher importance on developing a habit of daily learning through reading books. No, my goal of 15 minutes a day isn’t some amazing feat; It wasn’t meant to be. It was meant to get me back in the habit… every single day.
This got me thinking about business books I’ve read, and ones I want to read.
Here’s my list:
Favorites from earlier in my career:
What’s next (to name a few):
If you are looking for a marketing book to get started I’d recommend The New Rules of Marketing and PR. If you want a general business book, with plenty of application for your personal life, Think Big, Act Bigger! – for sure.
Tell me about any books you’d recommend.
Happiness is a choice. That’s a difficult concept to embrace when struggling to find it. It’s not a destination, though, but a state-of-being achievement along the journey. Some people seem to be blessed with a natural disposition for happiness. Others have to work at it. Levels of happiness ebb and flow even throughout a single day.
While psychology says we shouldn’t let other people determine our happiness, it sure seems like they can bring it down at times. Contrarily, we have the opportunity to make someone’s day. A simple act often brings more happiness than we realize – a smile, an encouraging word, a kind gesture.
I’ve recent started following Skip Prichard. I quite enjoy the topics and insights he shares. This article gives scientifically proven methods for achieving great happiness.
Skip, thanks for sharing. I hope you don’t mind me passing along this great article.
Summer is great. It provides a respite for kids from the normal school and homework routine. As adults, our routine often changes too. Warm weather and longer days are ideal for relaxing, recharging one’s battery, and even being just a little lazy.
Now that school is back in session I’ve been slow to re-implement a more rigorous routine. For example, I was going to the gym five to six times a week, that’s slipped to three days a week on average.
Routines are good. They establish order in our life. Routines help us stay organized, prioritize, plan important activities – to achieve more throughout the day, week and month.
So while I have been busy I know a higher level of productivity is achievable.
My goal for September to accomplish a highly productive routine focused on doing more over the course of the month. Thus the theme “Do More”.
Ever feel like you’ve got another gear in you? I’ve been feeling it. And now I’m going to test it out to prove that I do.
Areas of Focus
- Physical exercise – 22 days of at least 30 minutes of physical activity (accounts for all weekdays) – strength training, indoor soccer, and racquetball.
- Thought Leadership – Four blog posts in September
- Develop New Blog – Travel & Adventure. Set up WordPress, define style, create at least three posts.
- Professional Development – Complete ten hours of training via Lynda.com
- Reading – Read at least 15 minutes daily. Complete at least 1 book (maybe 2)
- Home Improvement – Complete three home improvement projects from Trello Board
- Family Time – A one-on-one outing with each of my four kids. Two family outings. A weekly date with my wife.
Identify areas of focus (see above). Better planning and scheduling to set priorities. Free up “less productive” time to accomplish the goals I set for myself – a little less Netflix and Facebook.
It’s not complicated, nor overly aggressive. I may add more areas as the month moves along, but this is a good start. For example, I’ve only completely read one book this year. It took me three months to get started, and another three months to complete it. So to read one book (maybe two) in a single month, would be a nice personal triumph. Same goes for blogging. Only twice have I had four blog posts in a single month. Creating seven blog posts, between two blog site would be an awesome achievement.
I realize many of my “do more” goals are far less than others do on a monthly basis. But this isn’t about them. It’s about.
Implementing a few simple practices will make your work life run a little smoother:
Start the day in your Calendar
- Whether using Outlook, Google Calendar or something else, start each morning by seeing what commitments you have that day. The, schedule time for specifics tasks or projects that require your attention. Do not start in your email inbox. It will suck you in like the lighting quicksand in the Fire Swamp.
When sending a meeting invite include the purpose for the meeting in the request
- It’s annoying to get a meeting request and have no idea why the meeting is taking place. Even better, include an agenda. Alert attendees that an agenda has been include by adding [A] in the subject line. Attendees will appreciate having an understanding of the meeting, and your meeting will run more effectively.
Change Subject Lines where relevant
- Email communication is great, but can become a maze of confusion very quickly. As an email chain switches directions, update the subject line to ensure it’s relevant to the most recent topics being discussed. The Subject Line field is editable for a reason.
That gray, rectangular, boxy object on your desk, it’s called a phone – use it
- Again, email is great; so are project management programs like Asana, JIRA and Basecamp. Often the quickest way to communicate is still verbally (mind blown)! So just pick up the phone and speaking directly. The power of spoken language is amazing.
Got any other best practices or quick tips? Please share.