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Top 7 Restaurants for a Business Lunch. #7 might not be what you think!!!

SuperFancyRestaurant

Top 7 restaurants for a business lunch.

These are in no particular order

Bonefish Grill

There is a variety of food so if you don’t know what other might want, it allows choice. Wait staff is typically attentive and easy going. Great atmosphere.

BonefishGrillLogo634x634

Maggiano’s

A professional yet casual atmosphere allows for some lighter conversation as well as business. This is a great restaurant for a small group since they really cater to that.

maggianos

The Capital Grille

Perfect for a client that you want to impress. The food here is next to none and the service is even better. The booths are private and quiet. Excellent for the most important of clients to take the impression to the next level. Call ahead to the matre’de and tell him/her who you are and who your client is. They will greet you at the door with your name and treat you like they are your personal staff.

capital grille

Season’s 52

For the health conscious client you are safe with this menu. Everything is fresh, always cooked to perfection and if you like desserts they are small and delicious! The service is of high standard as well.

seasons52

McCormick & Schmick’s

Always serving seafood that is fresh and meats prepared to your liking, this is a great option for any business lunch. It’s a fun yet professional atmosphere. Pricing is fair for all you get.

mcormick

Your local spot

Sometimes the best spots are your local favorites. You become the expert when you bring your client to ‘your place’. A restaurant that you frequent when you are on your own time. Great for a client who is new or visiting the area as well as someone who says they just have never been there. You are the local expert!

SuperFancyRestaurant

Your own home

My mom was an excellent cook so our home growing up was always hosing dad’s clients when they were in town. If you enjoy hosting and want to really bond with a client this is a great option. Beware, not everyone likes this and certainly don’t do it if you aren’t really comfortable with the idea.

home cooking

Raw Talent

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If there were one thing I could emphasize to C-level executives is that starting

 

with the right people, the best people, is the key to everything. Yes there are lots

 

of other important factors, if there wasn’t, I wouldn’t have contents for the book,

 

but I often get asked to “train-up my salespeople”. When I ask a few questions I

 

learn that they are just not trainable. Not everyone is trainable and probably for

 

different reasons than you might think.

 

There are 3 things that make salespeople successful.

Those things are

Attitude, Activities and Approach.

These are the three ‘secrets’ to sales success.

 

 

Are they secrets? Of course not but I am amazed how often they are not adhered

 

to, therefore, maybe they are secrets.

 

To me the most important is the first one; ATTITUDE.

 

 

Attitude is the belief in yourself, your environment, your work ethic. It’s that fire in

 

your belly that makes you do whatever it takes to get the job done. No excuses,

 

no “almost” no sort of, no close but not quite there

 

Attitude is the real deciding factor in success. That being said are there some

 

things, some raw talent that helps move this along better and faster? You betcha!

 

Pay attention here if you have any mediocre salespeople. If you do,

 

ask yourself why. Let me answer it for you, because you allow it! That’s right.

 

Your fault. You. No one else. Let me tell you a story to help illustrate this point.

 

 

 

Raw Talent.

 

Our son was recruited in 2012 to play for the Kansas City Royals as a left-

 

handed pitcher. Of course he began in the minor leagues. His first week in

 

Arizona was an exciting one. Barely holding in his excitement, he proceeded to

 

go on the field to work with the pitching coach early in week one.

 

Immediately after the introductions and hand-shake niceties Clayton began

 

showing the coach his pitches. “I was really known for my change up. I also have

 

an excellent curve ball”. He could barely contain himself in anticipation of what

 

the coach would say.

 

After he threw his pitches and looked at the coach for his endorsement, the

 

coach began the conversation like this, “ Clayton I don’t give a “darn” (expletives

 

replaced) how you pitched in college and I sure don’t care that you were known

 

for your change-up. We hired you for your raw talent boy. We didn’t pick you for

 

your fancy pitches you threw in school! I will teach you how to throw a curve ball

 

and that change-up? Forget it! You will do it my way and I will make you a pro

 

player. You don’t like that, you can leave today!”

 

 

When he called home with his tale between his legs and told us that story, I

 

explained that was a good thing. If all you had were your pitches, he didn’t have

 

much to work with to make you great! They see something in you that is the

 

makings of someone great. That is to be proud of.

 

The moral here? In business, hire for RAW TALENT. These are things like

 

confidence, bravery, desire and commitment. The rest can and should be taught.

 

If you hire off of a resume of someone who has sold, you may be looking over

 

Someone that can…you may be missing the boat!

5 Things to Move Forward in Any Economy

green-economy

5 Things to Move Forward in Any Economy

 

It seems that lately we are hearing some promising, yet limiting, news about the state of our economy. Whether there is truth to what we hear or not, we must position ourselves to move forward. We can use this opportunity to evolve and do things differently. Look at your business model. Are there things that need to change? Are you still selling and prospecting the same?

Something’s got to give. The opportunity you have should be looked at as an exciting time to implement change for the good. Don’t let your fear for change get in the way of the new normal. Here are five steps I have laid out to help you evolve your business with the changing economic state:

  • Look inside first: Focus on what you have. Look at your customer base. See if you can add more value to the professional relationships that exist. Not in terms of discounts or giveaways, but instead help them out in ways outside your relationship. For example, if they are looking for a new bookkeeper, keep that in mind. If an opportunity arises to help them find one, bring it up. Even set up a meeting or lunch with the three of you. Things outside of the normal business exchange are what we all need to increase business. Reach out and keep those you are in relationships with in mind by offering added value. Chances are they will do the same with you.
  • Analyze your expenses: I think so many of us lack real understanding here. I find most businesspeople/entrepreneurs are either focused on business development or cost cutting. To be successful, both need to be tended to all of the time. Yes, a business development plan is crucial in building and maintaining business, but we don’t want money coming in the front door and sneaking out the back because we aren’t looking.
  • Get creative in your marketing: Always be looking for new ways to market your business. If traditional means of advertising are tough on your budget, meet with your account manager and get creative. I always worry about those who pull their ads all together. What kind of message does that send? And yes, the Internet is a wonderful tool, but not only do you need to be creative there, too, but you need to know what to focus on.
  • Network: I’m a big fan of networking through your local organizations. You always have at least two things: money and time. If money is short, you have time, so use that. Get out there and network. Use your local chamber of commerce, BNI group or even business-run charity events to meet potential strategic alliances.
  • Build strategic alliances: Look at businesses associated with yours. For example, if you’re a financial adviser, look at local CPAs or attorneys who do estate planning. Make plans to get together and discuss what both of you are looking for, and see if there are ways you can help each other out. These relationships prove especially fruitful when looking for referrals, so remember to give as much as you receive.

Turn your business inside out and get to know all aspects of it. What can you do to streamline? To build? Who really are your best customers? Are you concentrating on them as much as finding new business? Now is the time to set these processes in place so future growth can happen the right way.

Top 5 Sales Presentation Fails

When making a presentation there are some mistakes that will often cost you the sale

1) Handing out your “proposal” before you present.

Steve c present

Well if you are going to hand out the presentation, why do you even need to be there? At best they can ‘follow along with you’ which means they will not be looking at you, at worst, you haven’t truly discussed things like the cost and they are jumping ahead and looking at the back page with pricing and you begin to sound like Charlie Browns teacher, “waa waa waa waa”.

2) Not engaging all of the people you are presenting to in your meeting

Gonna ignore you

Working with one person in the organization and then having to present to several is a scenario most of us will experience. If this happens you have no idea if they agree with the issues your contact had and even if they do agree, if you don’t get them talking right at the beginning, you are just “pitching” and not engaging them in the recommendations. Big mistake!

3) Talking to your projector screen and not to the prospects.

dont look at screen

So often we are so proud of the presentation we put together that we watch it as closely as they do. First of all there is nothing more frustrating for your prospect then feeling ‘pitched to’ and not listened to.

4) Not talking about money beforehand and having to justify cost at the actual presentation.

Show me the money

It is truly important to have learned enough to ask the right questions to be able to discuss some round numbers and get an agreement before you present.

5) Not understanding what will happen after you present.

Not understand whats next

The common misunderstanding is that after you present your recommendations or proposal is that you have to then wait for their answer be cause they have to ‘think it over’. NO THEY DON’T. Learn what that process is before you present and if there needs to be a next step, you need to know that before and find out that day.

Are Your Salespeople Taking Shortcuts?

Logan, a software sales rep, had been having a rough day. He’d been bombarded with questions from several customers and gotten behind on work he needed to finish before the end of the day.

Then, he got a call from Tony, a prospect who introduced himself by saying: “I’ve heard great things about your engineering software package. I saw a demo about a year ago, and was not in a position to purchase it at the time. But since then, it’s become very apparent that I need to integrate it into my system.”

“Wow,” Logan thought. “This will be easy. It’s about time something went right today.”

Then, Tony said: “I need to know about the cost, the tech support and how soon it can be installed.”

Logan immediately went into his pitch. He discussed tech support in detail, covered availability and other options, and explained that the price was $12,000, with 30-day terms.

Tony’s response was unexpected. He said that $12,000 was quite a hefty price tag and he needed a couple of days to think about all of this more carefully. He’d call Logan back next week.

Logan did a double take. “What just happened?” he thought. “This sale was in the bag, a sure thing. He really needs it and now he’s thinking it over? He said he needed the software right away.” And that was the end of the call.

So, what happened? Logan got lazy, plain and simple. He thought Tony was sold. All he had to do was give him the information he needed, then write it up. He got fooled into assuming the sale without doing the work. He never got Tony to talk about why he was looking now, with what seemed to be a real priority about buying the software. The entire transaction was conducted at the intellectual level, without any real understanding of the true need.

So, what happened? Logan was lured into taking shortcuts. He mistakenly thought the prospect’s enthusiasm was as sure as a sale. No matter. You need the time to qualify the prospect and make sure he’s real before giving out information or making your presentation.

In Logan’s case, a couple of questions would have made a world of difference. He might have said: “Before we discuss pricing, help me understand why this software is so important. I want to make sure the application is correct for you. Would you mind if I ask you a couple of questions to better understand?”

Of course, you’re digging in to find out what is really going on. It is so important to gather this information before you discuss price so you can truly have an understanding of not only why they want the software, but the consequence of not installing it.

Once you give away your information – whether on the phone, in a presentation or in the form of a proposal – you have given up any form of control and are literally at the mercy of the prospect.

Are your salespeople going for the quick sale or do they really understanding the true need behind it?shortcuts image

5 Top Networking Tips

  1. Don’t try to sell. For most people it all ends tragically here. They mistakenly stroll into the industry conference or chamber of commerce meeting with the idea that they need to find someone to sell to. Don’t do it. It gives people the creeps. And it kills your real opportunity at these events–finding strategic partners.
    top5 meme 1 networking
  2. Give before you get. Don’t go with your hand out empty to your network. Not until you’ve made some deposits in your good will account. Build up your account first, by asking about them before talking about you.top5 meme 1 networking 2
  3. Be Remembered. Create a ‘Memory Hook”. This term created by BNI, the largest networking organization in the world. Introduce yourself with an interruption, a cause to make them stop and listen. When someone asks me what I do I say, “I help people STOP Selling”. They say what? Did you say stop? Now I get a few seconds to explain it. (and only a few seconds).top 5 meme networking 3
  4. Ask questions. Everyone says you need an elevator pitch to use when you meet someone at a networking event. But the way MOST people do it is, frankly boring.top 5 meme networking 4

It usually goes like this “Hi, I’m Bob, I’m an accountant…” or “Hi, I’m Bob with Enormicon, we specialize in scalable solutions to strategic problems by finding synergy with customers, suppliers and partners”…Yuck! If you’re doing this, you’re boring and forgettable.

Ask a few questions to get the other person talking. What do you do? How long have you done that? What do you like the most about it? If I met someone that I thought would be a good referral for you, what would that look like?

  1. Set goals. Never attend a networking event without deciding how many strategic partners you’re going to meet. If you’re just starting, commit to two. As you get better, increase the number. When you hit the number go home, knowing you succeeded.top 5 meme netwokring 5

Top 6 Changes sales people must make NOW!

Top 6 Changes in Sales You Must Make in 2017!

 

 

 

As much as the world of business has changed, some of the same mistakes are still being made by business development professionals. These 6 things are simple yet a must in creating business today.

 

  • Searching for Customers is Different Today.

 

top 6 meme 1

Prospecting is the true key to finding and keeping customers but most people do it wrong. Networking is not for direct prospecting, “hey do you guys use promotional products, here’s an example..” NO! Instead I say go to an event and look for Strategic Alliances, people that you can refer business back and forth to as opposed to hitting you prospects hard. We all know building business on referrals is the best way to do business so lets network for good alliances that you can refer business to and that is a good source for your referrals.

 

  • Tell the prospect it’s OK to break up.

top 6 meme 2 

 

Rejection is a result of trying to sell someone your product or service as opposed to tell them you what you are calling about, let them know it seems that because of what they do you could potentially work together, but (pull back) you don’t want to assume that you are a good fit. What you’d like to do is ask a few questions to see if the two of you are a fit and if not, we decide it’s a NO then we only wasted a few minutes? Sound OK?

This allows you to give a NO as an option right upfront. Then you have asked for it as opposed to a prospect pushing you away and that is the rejection.

 

 

  • Be a Reporter.

 top 6 meme 3

 

An example of the best salespeople today are reporters. Reporters don’t have a specific agenda besides learning as much as they possibly can about a person, subject or situation. They do their research, ask great open-ended questions and always listen in between the lines. They are trying to dig out all of the information they can to recreate it in a great story. Sales people fall short because when they hear something they want to jump n what they heard and try to solve it with their solution. When you stop someone from telling you more about their situation to sell them, it is usually too early to do so and you loose the sale.

 

  • Research is important but not for the reasons you would think.

 top 6 meme 4

 

Research should be used for credibility purposes but most importantly to create good, quality questions to engage your prospect in conversation and truly understand their needs. Additionally research the heck out of an organization or person before you call them. Refer to that information you learned to form a good question, not s ‘salesy’ one.

 

  • Cutting Prices are a Big Problem.

 top 6 meme 5

 

Discounting is almost always a result of one of 2 things. 1) The customer doesn’t truly trust you/your product or service so there is only price to use as a differentiator or 2) You haven’t truly understood the need for the product. I know need seems simple but it isn’t. What are they trying to say, what impression are they trying to leave, how do they want to be seen? What are they using it for? There are lots of questions to not only understand what a prospect needs but the true deep-down ‘whys’. Asking questions will let you also gain credibility and trust but not selling and truly asking and listening…

 

  • Listen and shut up!!

top 6 meme 6

 

Wow! If I could teach people that are in sales/business

development to ask questions and listen there would be a lot more success in business! Write this down; WAIT (Why Am I Talking)?

Telling isn’t selling…but it comes from a good place. We are excited about what we represent and want other to be excited too but excitement doesn’t sell, questions and true engagement does.

Long ago we were taught to ask a few questions and when you hear a “ buying signal” jump in and tell them you can help with that and how. NO!

When you ask a question, wait for the answer and whatever the answer is, especially if it may be something your product or service can help with, the best next question is, “tell me about that”, then SHUT-UP!!!

 

Top 5 Hiring Mistakes #Top5Fridays

Top 5 Hiring Mistakes

 

  • (1) Looking for new employees when one is leaving.

top 5 hiring picture 1

I think we all know the value of a good employee. Make no mistake, if you hire (and manage) right, your organization runs like a

well oiled machine and I defy anyone to argue that. “Get the right people on the bus in the

right seats” the famous quote from the top-notch book Good to Great by Jim Collins. That

being said why are we looking for employees only when we “need” one. You always need

them if they are great and greatness doesn’t come along only when you are looking so be

looking all of the time.

Our biggest problem with looking when we “need” someone is the desperation factor. We

often hire to fill a need by hiring “the best of the worst”. When we are feeling pressure

from a department or another employee to lighten their load we often make a decision not

for the “best person” but the “best for right now person”. This will hurt you in the long run

every time.

 

2)Hiring off of a resume’.

top 5 hiring picture 2

When I say it is a mistake hiring off of a resume’ I don’t mean to presume you actually hire when a good resume comes in without other important considerations. What I do mean is being impressed by the background they have had; whom they’ve worked for and what they’ve done. Background is less important then things like eagerness to learn, commitment and desire to be successful. Hire for attitude, train for skill.

 

3) Hiring in your image.

top 5 hiring picture 3

Allowing the likeability factor to take over the actual decision of the best candidate. We like people that are like us, that we relate to but in hiring that is not to be used as a gauge. We all make decisions emotionally, meaning we decide on things in our life business and personal by our gut, by what we feel. In some cases it’s enough but in the decision of hiring someone to help you grow your business, there needs to be much more then you like them.

 

4) Selling the candidate on the job.

top 5 hiring picture 4

We are passionate about our organization and all of the good things that we offer. Because of that, we sell the candidate on how great the job is instead of really qualifying them first. One of the most important things we need to do in an interview is to ask good questions and listen for the answers. It is called an interview for a reason. Do not get caught up in telling the candidate all about the job, what it takes, the duties the company benefits etc. Do not get caught up in this sale. You may find out too late the things you could have found out upfront.

 

5) Overlooking a teachable, trainable candidate for one with “experience”. (A topic discussed on the #SELLutions podcast episode 1)

top 5 hiring picture 5

The idea of hiring someone with experience is sales is understandable. It seems like a good idea for someone who can just fit right into a job and start off fast and furious. This is often not the case, though it takes more work and effort to train someone it often proves to be much more lucrative in the end because you have taught them in your way. Unfortunately sales people seem to have more bad habits then good ones when they leave a job. Though this can be an overstatement it is more often true then not.

 

The key is to be looking for someone better then your best person, all of the time. If one of your salespeople said to you that they were going to look for new business only when they lose existing business, you would probably fire them. Then don’t do the same thing. As an executive, your prospecting responsibility is looking for top-level salespeople all of the time. Not just when you lose one.

 

How’s your organization doing? Take a free assessment and find out;

www.CorpSalesTest.com

 

 

 

Greta Schulz is President of Schulz Business, a sales Consulting and Training firm. She is a best selling author of “To Sell IS Not To Sell” and works with fortune 1000 companies and entrepreneurs. For more information or free sales tips go to www.schulzbusiness.com and sign up for ‘GretaNomics’, a weekly video tip series or email sales questions to greta@schulzbusiness.com

 

 

Perception or Reality?

 

poopypeepee

My son recently told me a story that I felt was really interesting. I wanted to share it because I think we can all learn some things from this story.

He explained to me that he has a friend who works at an art gallery. This particular gallery hosts art exhibits where people come get cocktails and walk around viewing the art.

Sometimes, artists are there to answer questions or do demonstrations. At times the gallery invites an artist to come, set up and paint while they are at the show so people can actually see them in action.

For one particular show, the artist agreed to come, and he requested a large black canvas that he could paint on. The rest he would supply.

My son’s friend, who was the gallery assistant, pulled the plain black canvas from the back room and set it up on an easel. She had a chair next to the canvas and posted the artist’s name with it.

About 4 p.m. on the day of the event, the artist called, saying he had an emergency and had to cancel. In all the craziness, the assistant forgot to take the canvas down, so it was left there throughout the show that evening.

At the end of the night, they have a service where, if you bought a piece of art, the organization will take the art into the back room, wrap it up, bring it out to your car and put it in for you, or deliver it, if necessary.

My son’s friend, who was outside working the deliveries, and a man were standing there for quite a long time. So, she said, “Can I help you sir?”

He said, “Yes, I’m waiting for my piece of art to come out.”

She replied: “Well, let me help you. Which is it?” He told her it was the black portrait.

She said, “Which one?”

He said it was the all-black modern piece. And the man explained that he paid $700 for that and really liked it.

She scratched her head, walked inside, and had someone wrap it up for him and bring it to the car.

I’m not sure how I feel about the ethics of this, but what I found so interesting about this story is that perception is reality, and what happened was because it was in an upscale art gallery and, nicely displayed, the man perceived the blank canvas to be a piece of modern art.

Perception is such an interesting thing. His perception was that was a piece of modern art. Because it was in an art gallery, presented on an easel and surrounded by other pieces of art, his perception was not only that was a piece of art, but he liked it.

So, what do we learn through this? I think what we learn is that, in most cases, and most things that we do and sell, people really think what they want to think, no matter what you tell them.

What’s important here is to make sure that your brand — in other words, what your company stands for or what you as a salesperson or entrepreneur or professional stand for — should be the best quality it can be.

If you are going to see someone in person, you should be dressed as if that person is the most important person you could ever meet. You need to be researched and prepared, and everything you do has to be professionally done.

When it is, you’re perceived as a professional. You’re perceived to be of a higher quality than your competitors for no other reason than perception.

So, how are you being perceived?

Are you a Goal Dictator?

Warren Buffett is a truly brilliant man. Of course this is my opinion and may not be everyone’s, that’s fine but here is why I say that. Warren Buffett is a billionaire many times over. He has truly earned all of his own money and is well respected because if it.

There are many people, including him, that feel that the amount of money he has is crazy over excessive and certainly not necessary.

 

Since he does feel that way, not only has he committed to give half of his fortune away to charity, he has enlisted other billionaires to do the same through the Giving Pledge;

 

“The Giving Pledge is a commitment by the worlds’ wealthiest individuals and families to dedicate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy”

 

What do I like about this? Well besides the obvious, which is helping people in need, I like it because it allows these billionaires to do something good, great in fact, by choice. Choice is a very important part of the human psyche. When we are given choices and opportunities to make them, we feel empowered and we have ownership.

 

How can we adopt some of this thinking into our own organizations today? Simple work with your sales people in helping them develop their own goals. I’m not talking about setting charity donation goals, though that is a great idea, I am just talking about the idea of choice.

 

Right now we are starting fresh with a new year, new goals. Often companies have revenue goals and from that, trickle down these numbers to their salespeople to create their goals. That would be great if that worked but I would bet money that most of you would tell me that the majority of your sales people didn’t reach that goal in which you wanted them to hit.

 

Why? There are several reasons. One that you can change the outcome of right now is to give them some ownership in creating their goals.

Try this. Start with how much money they need to make as well as how much they want to make. There is a difference. When I say have to make that is to pay bills and live their life. What about the other “stuff”? The stuff that gives them the motivation to do whatever it takes. What is that? If you can help them uncover it, everyone wins.

 

Additionally when you dictate that number, even if it could get them the “stuff”, those things that do motivate them to do whatever it takes, that exercise must be done so they can come to that realization themselves. That is important. Carving the path for someone instead of letting them carve out their own is massively different. You must let them go through this exercise. Find out what the underlying needs and wants are?

 

If you want help, here is a free download to walk you through it. www.StartwithGoals.com. To get started begin with you. What do you want? Why do you want it? What would it mean if you achieve it?

 

Remember when someone creates their own destiny and has worked through the process of how to get there, they are empowered, engaged and feel good that they made their own decisions.

 

And maybe if this goes well, create your own giving pledge among your sales people as well. How much would they like to give, to whom? Let’s have them share that in a sales meeting!

 

 

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