Give Me 5 Days and You’ll Turn Your Sales Around.

May 1


Darrell Crow

Darrell Crow

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Starting a business is an exciting, yet daunting experience. The first year or two or extremely critical since you have to build everything from scratch; market position, product line, company processes, promotion, customer service, in fact the whole ball of wax. The most critical thing you can do is select to whom you will market. Once that question is answered, how are you going to smartly tackle what's most important to you to achieve your goals? This article proposes one methodology widely in use helping successful entrepenaurs apply their time wisely. Darrell Crow, author, is a 35-year veteran in starting new companies and entering new markets. This is a proven methodology.

Thousands of small business owners are busy struggling each year to find new business while perhaps 3% or less have more customers than they can possible handle. What’s the secret? What’s the fundamental issue separating the 3%ers from the 97%ers?Starting a business is an exciting,Give Me 5 Days and You’ll Turn Your Sales Around. Articles yet daunting experience especially in the formative first year or two. Often small business owners and entrepreneur find themselves wearing many, many hats, from janitor to master sales negotiator to deal closer. Obviously time has to be managed, resources have to be managed, priorities aligned and there’s only so much money. What’s the secret? Sales defines the activities of most small businesses. Sales means revenue which means profits and operational cash.

I’ve been training sales representatives in products, services and sales skills since 1977. In each instance, the primary objective was to give the representative confidence in themselves, their abilities, and their offerings so they could serve their customers well. Our sales role is really very simple, make it easy for the customer to buy from us.

You’re offering the best possible solution for their needs. You are the right person doing the right thing at the right time. Your customer will appreciate you selling them your products and will reward you with even more orders…….so long as we focus on our number one goal. To build sales confidence and prepare ourselves for customer contacts, it’s important to first set goals and to learn to manage our time wisely. Why? Goal setting is the strongest form of self-motivation known.

The high achievers of society are always knowledgeable goal setters. Goals allow us to channel our energy on specific targets. Whatever we want to do or be, we begin by setting goals.

Before the 20th century, life’s goals were simple. “Survival!” However, in our society today, existence is insured to some degree. What remains is our choice to make the most of our existence. We have the luxury of planning our lives, achieving our desires and changing what we don’t like. Just s we intentionally follow physical exercise plan for health, we can set goals as part of our mental growth plan. Remember the Bob Dylan lyrics (from the 70’s & 80’s), ‘He who ain’t busying being born, is busy dying.” We are the only life forms on this planet with the privilege to take chare of our lives, to modify our environments and to achieve our ultimate.

Yale University conducted a study of their graduating classes and found that 3% of all graduates had written goals. Twenty years later, it was found that, in financial terms, that that 3% was worth more than the other 97%. Goal setting, although money is not its primary objective, can reward us financially.

A well known researcher, David McClellan, determined that even the 58% of Americans who identified themselves as “satisfied” were employed doing what they did not like. He identified the 13% who had the characteristics of being “very successful and very satisfied” and determined they were able to:

• Focus on what they wanted

• Zero in on specific goals: o not “make more money” but, “Make $200,000 in 2005”o not “loose weight” but, “…weigh 185 pounds by July 1, 2006”A Wall Street Journal article on employment a few years ago noted that a survey conducted indicated 80% of Americans were dissatisfied with their jobs. The survey was conducted with the same group three years later. Three years later, most still had the same job. Why? The article concluded that few had taken the initiative for corrective action.

I know some of you are saying, “Hey, Joe Blow doesn’t set goals, but he sure is lucky and successful.” Don’t kid yourself. Luck is simply preparedness meeting opportunity. Chance is being prepared for success. Determine to set goals. Be prepared for life. The higher the goal – the higher the productivity.

So how do I go about setting goals? How do I know when I’ve set good, solid goals? Smart goals if you please. Goals I can achieve. Well, I’m not sure if this is the first time many of you have heart of SMART goals. But it provides a solid foundation for setting good goals. SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relatable and Time-bounded.

• SPECIFIC – Be as clear and precise as necessary to avoid misinterpretation.

• MEASURABLE – Quantify whatever you can and qualify more subjective expectations by stating what the outcome will be if the goal is achieved.

• ACHIEVABLE – You should be able to say, “I can do this!”• RELATABLE – Ensure that your goals are related to your business plan, your expectations, and your growth.

• TIME-BOUNDED – Set specific dates for both intermediate and end results. The more complex, difficult checkpoints you will want for interim adjustment and coaching. Consistently review your progress in meeting your goals. Now sit down and write out your goals. Identify what is most important in your personal professional life. Visualize achieving you’re the goals. Visualize wining that contest, being recognized for your achievement, visualize achieving your sales goals.

After you’ve written your goals, develop a written plan to achieving your goals. List what you have to do, step-by-step to reach the goals. Then execute the plan. Seize the first opportunity to act.

Keep your daily life focused. Control your time and you control your life. Control your life and you achieve. Goals come from who we are, and who we want to be.

Three years ago I started my business full time. It’s vision was to help people learn to oil paint, even if they never painted before, never even held a paint brush. I even guaranteed they would learn to oil paint using my instructions. I left the high technology industry as a marketing professional to put my money where my mouth waxed eloquently.

My goals for the Darrell Crow Studios for the first year….

1.Obtain legal status for the Studio within 30 days.

2.Achieve a run rate of $1,000 gross revenues monthly by the end of the year.

3.Secure 8 locations at which to conduct instructor led classes by the end of the year.

4.Develop each location to an average attendance of 8 students by end of year.

5.Build 2 weekly private classes with an average attendance of 6 students each within 6 months.

6.Sales Revenue for the year of $12,0007.

Identify one source for selling my paintings at an average of $195.00 after commissions.

8.Design, create 12 new original paintings for the next year’s classes.

As you can see, these goals are quite specific and eaily measured to determine if I met them. They were achievable. I met the vast majority of these goals and whereas there a couple I missed, I still had positive progress in trying to accomplish them.

I have written my goals down into my business plan, they’re part of my business control panel (real time metrics I use to gauge performance daily). I review my goals on a monthly and quarterly basis, make adjustments and repeat the process.

To execute your primary goals, you’ll need to develop a step-by-step plan on how you’ll achieve each of your goals.

To keep focused, its necessary to have more than your long term goals and your daily “to-do” list written down. You must review them frequently and at regular intervals to perform an “executive review of who you are and where you are going. This reinforces and helps you remember WHY you are doing all you’re doing.

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