Labor Day is a Federal Holiday in America. It’s a time when we celebrate the economic and social contributions of workers and it’s observed on the first Monday in September (September 3 in 2012)!
What does it mean to me? ANOTHER DAY, expect a day OFF!
Of course I appreciate the contributions and achievements of American workers; but I do that EVERY DAY!
I thank the postman when I see him. I appreciate the Waste Collection Guys and yes, I tell them so when I catch the truck in the neighborhood. When I go to a drive thru at the restaurant or to the teller at the bank, a clerk at the mall or a salesperson at my favorite store, I let them know I do know take their service for granted.
Try it…you’d be surprised at the wonderful service you get! People want to be appreciated…all of us but all too often all we hear are complaints. My salad was wilty, my cola was flat. The line was long and you were on the phone, the mail was late. Get over yourself! Be thankful and let those who serve you know you appreciate their service not just on LABOR DAY, but every day!
And oh yeah, for old Southern gals like me…it’s now time (after Labor Day) to stop wearing white shoes and NEVAH seersucker after Labor Day!
A 100-year-old driver hit 11 people yesterday (August 29th), including 9 children as he backed his car onto a sidewalk across from an elementary school. The driver didn't hear the terrified screams, so people began pounding on the windows of his Cadillac screaming for him to stop. At last report, 4 of the children were in critical condition, but everyone is expected to survive. Driver Preston Carter, who will turn 101 next month. He told officers his brakes failed. Carter was pulling out of the grocery store parking lot, but instead of backing into the street, he backed onto the sidewalk. In California, people over age 70 must renew their driver's license in person. Older drivers can also be required to take a driving test if they fail a vision exam, or if a police officer, physician, or a family member raises questions about their ability to drive.
SORRY…and I am getting there myself…BUT, something MUST be done! Some drivers do not need to be on the road! AGE CERTAINLY PLAYS A ROLE…but, I believe a doctor must sign a form for anyone over a certain age (to be determined based on insurance stats) saying whether the person is physically and/or mentally FIT to drive and the person must renew a temporary license every 6 months(written, oral and driving tests). The doctor would NOT be held responsible! Family members must take the car, keys, etc away from their loved one and while I can only imagine how difficult this would be it is something that must be done. Once again, take care of those you love, help them get where they need to go and be accessible to them but don’t put them out on the road to kill or be killed!
Any thoughts from YOU?
A new study says that kids get about $65 a month in allowance -- and just 1 percent of parents say their kids put any of it into savings. According to a national survey for the American Institute of CPAs by Harris Interactive, 61 percent of parents surveyed said that they give their kids an allowance, and 54 percent of parents said that they started doing so when their kids were 8 years old. Eighty-nine percent of parents surveyed said that they require their kids to earn their allowance by doing chores -- at least an hour of them a week, though most kids did about 6 hours a week worth of work for their money. (Yahoo! Shine)
ASK YOUR LISTENERS
If you give your kid allowance, what do you expect them to buy with it?
Will you still buy your kids treats and toys if you give them an allowance?
After what age do you stop giving an allowance?
Kids -- do you brag about your allowance, or are you embarrassed to get money from mom and dad?
Chances are you’re completely satisfied with your sales revenues and have no need to read any further. However, if you’re less than 100% happy with 2011’s finish and remain uncertain about 2012, it might be that one of these barriers is getting in your way of achieving the results you desire.
Turnover – Hiring the right people is job one. I once read a statistic that 40% of sellers don’t meet their quota, resulting in 30% annual turnover. What a drain and expense! I believe opportunity costs of 5x their prior annual earnings must be factored in to the expense of replacing a salesperson. Opportunity costs include business lost due to lack of contact/follow up; loss of momentum; undeveloped new business; cost of recruiting; manager’s time spent interviewing instead of developing; change and its added stress on the team. If you’ve experienced higher than 5% turnover, there’s a flaw in your hiring practices, manager/employee relationship, compensation structure and/or development efforts.
Unclear Strategy – Without a specific plan, the team will flounder, make errors in pricing and remain unclear about how they affect results. Sellers must understand your goals for each product, the absolute bottom-line prices and what their parameters are for leverage. They will either be part of your plan, or become part of someone else’s. We teach a strategic account management system that gets the team laser-focused and creates specific measurable goals and action plans for those accounts with the highest potential for growth. Be strategic and deliberate.
Taking Ownership – If your sellers tend to make excuses and your managers tolerate less-than-desirable behavior, your team lacks responsibility and accountability. The role of the salesperson is to diligently work to increase the company’s profits by generating the agreed upon revenues. When they are unable to do so, they should have specific reasons why based on their behaviors, need for help, etc. There should be a set guideline of expectations and metrics for each seller and they should earn the right to work their book of business. Managers should regularly monitor desired behaviors, administer rewards and consequences and ensure that the team has the tools and support needed to succeed.
Effort and the Will to do whatever it takes – Oftentimes we meet with business owners, managers and their teams who tell us they are quite comfortable. In those instances one thing is clear: these folks are not likely to make any behavioral changes or put forth extra effort to grow. When sellers get comfortable and lose the will and desire to continue to grow, business suffers. When effort doesn’t translate into results, negativity sets in which begets poor attitudes and behaviors resulting in poor performance, which reinforces the negative beliefs and typically leads to disengagement. This is another reason why expectation setting is critical. If you desire growth, your team must have a personal and professional growth mindset and be held accountable for demonstrating the same.
Need for Approval – As you read this article, someone on your team is likely offering something as added value or making a concession to close a deal. If this is part of your plan and accepted, know that the practice will need to continue. Sellers who have a high need for approval struggle with standing their ground and prefer to say what others want to hear. They have a strong need to be liked and accepted. However, although they may be well liked, when they concede the customer loses respect for them and no longer places the proper value on your product. If you suspect this could be hindering your success, we can discuss your options to turn this around.
Lack of Personal Development Plans – One of the best ways to keep employees motivated and engaged is to demonstrate that you care about them and are committed to helping them succeed. Providing individualized coaching and development plans is a powerful way to prove their importance. Yet, even though managers know that top performers require opportunities to achieve their personal goals, many times these individualized plans don’t exist. Commit to taking the time to develop each of your team members, you will be richly rewarded for doing so.
What’s Celebrated – Are you sending conflicting messages about what you value? Celebrating hitting budget with the team is okay, but only those who achieved or overachieved their goals should be singled out. Praise desired behaviors and reward expected accomplishments. Be clear about the difference. For example, if you celebrate new business, be sure your definition is clear, i.e., hasn’t purchased from any division in the past 13 months, or has never purchased. What you celebrate should relate to your stated goals and expectations.
While there are a myriad of reasons why companies don’t attain their revenue goals, after 25+ years of selling, managing and coaching, I’ve come to believe that these are the big issues plaguing sales organizations. If any of these apply to your team and you’d like some help, it would be my privilege to meet with you.
They are happy men whose natures sort with their vocations – Francis Bacon
According to a survey reported on in People Management, the number of employees who are ‘proud’ to work for their organization has fallen from almost half of workers at the start of 2012 to just two-fifths.
A survey of 1,114 office staff, by recruitment firm Hyphen, suggested that question marks over the reputations of some employers may have dampened employee engagement. The number of women disenchanted with their employer has grown to more than a quarter (27 percent) compared with only 17 percent who admitted they were not proud of their firm at the beginning of the year.
At a time when employee engagement is as critical as ever this survey sheds new light on the need for employers to be engaged with their employees and to step up in their leadership roles. It is simply not enough to be aware of employee disengagement. It is incumbent upon those in leadership to understand why.
Zain Wadee, managing director at Hyphen said the findings made a strong case for employers to invest in engagement, adding that organizations and managers must work hard to foster a strong culture of inclusivity at work in the coming months.
Engagement is critical to the life of your business or organization. When team members feel valued, respected, and included it goes a long way in creating a positive work environment. Here are three simple tips to help get leaders engaged with their employees and boost morale.
Walk among your people. It is when you get out from behind the desk and the safe confines of your office that you learn what is truly going on in your organization. The only way to build employee engagement is by personal engagement.
It is when your team sees that you are with them not just in words but with your presence that you can begin to turn around the engagement deficit. Your “open door” policy should not be designed for your team members to come in to your office, but for you to get out. Walk among them and get to know them.
Listen to your people. You have now taken the first steps to engagement by coming out of your office. Now is your opportunity to learn from your team. Engagement that will build the morale of your organization begins by listening to your people. It is when you demonstrate genuine interest in what they are doing that you can reclaim the pride of your people.
Listening to your people builds relationships. It shows that you place value in their opinions and builds the kind of relationships that will see you through good times and bad. Think of the positive benefits you can reap when you gather informally with a group of employees around the table in the break room and simply have a conversation? When you respect your employees enough to listen to them they will take pride in where they work because you have taken pride in them.
Respond to your people. When you walk among your people and listen to them, you are in better position to respond to their needs. It is easier because you have built relationships, placed value in their opinions, and have taken personal responsibility about the importance of engagement.
Having pride in where you work matters. Meaningful engagement is a matter of priority for those in leadership. You will never get to the next level of success in your business if your people have no pride in their work. When you have pride in your people they will have pride in you. This is the beginning of how you create a positive workplace culture.
Are you proud of where you work?
As if weddings don't have enough memorable moments for the photographer to document, here comes a new trend: photos of the couple on the morning after the wedding.
A New Jersey based photographer who specializes in morning after photos, Michell Jonne, said she likes to "push the limits" during the session, but keep her clients laughing. Jonne said she got the idea after seeing the Emporio Armani ads featuring real-life married couple David and Victoria Beckham in their underwear. She charges about $650 for the service.
Come on! Would you even THINK about having these photos taken…rally now; is NOTHING sacred!
I don’t like it! But, that’s just old fashion me…what about YOU?
Hands down, the number one lament I hear from business owners is that they wish they could rely on consistent new business development. The contributing factors of those inconsistencies lie in whether each seller has the innate talents necessary to be successful; whether there’s a sound business development strategy in place; and whether the sellers will put forth the necessary effort.
Since all of these factors can’t be covered in one article, here are what I believe to be 10 common attributes of the most successful producers.
1. Confidence (belief in one’s self and the work you are doing)
People naturally gravitate towards those who exude self-confidence. Confident people know that they can and will make a difference. This self-confidence must also translate to confidence in the product/service and company.
2. Passion (a strong desire to do what you do)
The passionate believe that what they sell is meaningful and can have a significant and positive impact on others. They put their whole self – 100% - into their work every day. They are fully engaged and, therefore, strongly motivated.
3. Desire to Understand (a relentless need to diagnose and question)
The needs of your prospects and clients come first. Great salespeople are curious. They work to understand their client’s business, challenges and potential. This understanding leads to the discovery of opportunities and possible solutions, always from the perspective of solving the client’s problems.
4. Responsibility (they’ll do what needs to be done when it needs to be done)
And they’ll do what they say they’ll do. They self-manage. They take complete responsibility for all aspects of their lives and their happiness. They do not make excuses, they do not blame others and they admit mistakes. Those who possess this attribute quickly earn the trust of others.
5. Business Savvy (an understanding of business principles)
Salespeople are business managers. They understand their client’s ever-changing needs. They understand that clients hire them because they’ve demonstrated how their product/service will deliver better results. They also understand valuations and aren’t likely to concede when pressured to lower their price.
6. Ability to Identify Opportunities (they ‘get it’)
There are opportunities all around us, some of which are a fit, many which aren’t. The best salespeople are always thinking and wondering. They make connections between what they learn each day and what new possibilities may result. Then they share those thoughts with others thus creating new opportunities.
7. Resourcefulness (they find or create a way to connect the dots)
None of us can do or be the best at everything. The resourceful know their strengths and weaknesses and surround themselves with others who fill the gaps. These folks have a strong network, are proactive and work consistently to connect those in their circle. These are the problem solvers, the ‘go to’ people.
8. Persuasiveness (they have the ability to influence and affect decisions)
These are the natural debaters and negotiators. Their approach is both logical and a bit emotional depending on their level of passion. These are the people others seek out for advice because they’re worth listening to. It’s the persuasive person who moves others to make decisions.
9. Continuous Prospecting (each new relationship may bring opportunity)
Uncovering new business opportunities is an essential part of their daily activity. Even current clients are fair game. Meeting people and discovering what they do energizes them. They have set goals to make new connections each day/week/month.
10. Closing (the ability to ask for and obtain commitments)
Getting others to make commitments throughout the sales process is what these people do quite naturally. Beginning with the first point of contact, and without reservation, they ask for what they need; to be considered, for an appointment, who the decision maker is, etc. They move each conversation to the next step asking for commitments consistently.
When all of these attributes are present, pipelines remain full, ideas are created, profitable sales are made and business growth occurs. Are you getting your fair share of new business?
Police in Palmyra, Pennsylvania are looking for a man who used stolen credit cards to buy more than $1,600 worth of items from a local 7-Eleven. According to authorities, the cards were stolen from the nearby neighborhood of Cinnaminson. Police have asked anyone with information about the man to contact them. (PhillyBurbs.com)
Couldn’t you like almost buy the whole store for 16 hundred dollars?
I mean how many Slurpees and Big Gulps can you get for that much money at a 7-Eleven?
Obviously this guy has no taste! Hey goofball, go to the mall, the electronics store or at least WalMart!
Remember earlier this week when I shared the story of the latest outrage against Islam?
Some Islamophobes had left bacon (gasp) on the grounds of a football field where a post Ramadan event was to be held. The NYPD immediately jumped to the conclusion that it was yet another attack on Islam and Muslims! The Police Commish said he was going to trrack down the url of someone who had posted anti-Muslim comments on a website.
Crime of the Century solved..and it had nothing to do with Muslims, Ramadan or anything else.
Here's the explanation, wait until CAIR hears about this. I'll be interested to see how they try to spin it.
Cruel 'Islamophobic Crime' in Staten Island, Solved!
The male caller, in a 9:20 a.m. message left on Staten Island Advance reporter Deborah Young's voice mail Tuesday (8/22/12), stated:
Hi, Deborah. This is-I was reading the article about the horrible incident of bacon and Muslims in the park and I wanted to let you know that is not my intention. I had put the bacon there. It was going bad in my trunk and I put it out for the scavengers like the opossums and the raccoons and sea gulls, and I did not intend for that to cause anybody any problems. It was not any (inaudible) anti-Muslim act, and I did not want to offend anybody in way. Thank you and have a good day.
Indeed, notwithstanding the transparent efforts of cultural jihadist groups like CAIR to manufacture evidence of "Islamophobia," bona fide hate crimes in the US, as per FBI statistics, are uncommon, overall, and at least 6-fold (i.e., 600%) more likely to be directed at Jews, relative to Muslims.
Statistics have traditionally held that sleepwalking is very rare, but, in fact, a recent study of 19 thousand Americans found that just over 29% had been caught sleepwalking at some point in their lives. Since sleepwalkers don't remember the event unless they're awakened, it could be even more common than that. People with depression are dramatically more likely than others to sleepwalk (3.5 times so) and it's also something that tends to run in the family. (Source: AskMen.com)
What about you? Ever!