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Category Archives: Communication

Prospecting: Uncover and Develop New Business

By | Blog, Communication, Sales, Sales management, Selling & salesmanship | No Comments

Guest post by John Naples, Encore Consulting Group WHEN I FIRST STARTED in sales, one of the first skills I learned was how to uncover new selling opportunities. I was part of a sales organization that placed high value on cold calling, and expected the salesperson to master appointment setting both over the telephone and by in-person cold calls. My district sales manager threw me to the lions the first week I returned from training. He told me to canvass my territory and make 30 calls per day. To “hit my numbers,” he said, I had to contact at least 500 new prospective clients each month. As a 22-year-old entry-level salesperson, I was both daunted and challenged by this ominous goal. My first call went really well. I dialed the phone number and the receptionist answered. She said, “Good morning, Pacific Industries. How may I direct your call?” I completely froze…

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Discovering: Identify Needs, Wants, and Pain Areas

By | Behavior Style and Values, Behavioral style, Blog, Communication, Customer service, Marketing communications, Sales coaching, Selling & salesmanship | No Comments

Guest post by John Naples, Encore Consulting Group WHEN I FIRST STARTED in sales, I was as green as they come. I entered the field directly after graduating from college and went to work for Lanier Worldwide in the highly competitive telecommunications industry. I was trained to hit the streets in San Diego’s Mission Valley and knock on at least 25 doors each day. Success was determined by the number of calls I made, rather than by their quality. Once I secured an appointment, I was taught to deliver a “feature dump” on anyone would listen. I quickly saw that this method of listing and describing features was all wrong; I wasn’t seeing good results and my competitors were winning. It took some experience and additional knowledge, though, before I figured out how to correct it. The fact is, I was missing a key, critical step in the selling process and…

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Why Empathy Matters: Being More Empathetic at Work Can Help Reduce Work-related Stress

By | Communication | No Comments

In the last two decades, increasing numbers of news articles, reports, surveys and studies confirm what most of us already knew: For the majority of American employees, work = stress. 80% of employees are stressed at work due to at least one factor; Almost half of them confess that they don’t know how to manage occupational stress and need guidance; 25% cite their job as the number-one stressor in their lives; Work-related stress causes employees to entertain violent thoughts – A quarter of stressed-out workers have felt like lashing out because of their stress; and More than half of that number felt like striking a co-worker. We all have felt some pressure at work at one point or another in our professional lives, as any job will contain areas that can cause employees to become stressed out. Even though these factors can vary depending on the individual and his or…

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Effective Communication and How to Get What You Want From People

By | Blog, Communication | No Comments

If you want something, sometimes the best approach is to ask for it. We ask customers to buy our products; we ask potential investors to put their trust – and money – into our ideas; we ask for salary increases and promotions; we raise complaints, etc. Some people just ask naturally but in many cases – especially in business – people hold back because they don’t want to appear pushy or aggressive. Asking for something means first identifying what it is you want. For example, if you are an aspiring entrepreneur, saying that you have a great idea for a new company and you want to start your own business is not good enough. Your dream may be clear to you, but your goal may not be objective and understandable enough for others. This is why many times you might get something, but not what you were hoping for. Before…

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How Changing the “Frame” Can Help Reshape Experiences with Colleagues

By | Behavioral style, Blog, Communication, Personal & Team Development, Personal management, Team building | No Comments

Imagine the following scenario: You are assigned to a new team for a project and while most of your new teammates are easy-going and friendly people, one person seems somewhat disagreeable. When you are late to work by a couple of minutes, your colleagues don’t seem to notice or joke lightly about your tardiness, whereas this person tells your straight up that being late is unacceptable. Upon completion of an important assignment, you get congratulated by your teammates – except for this one person who after a quick “Good job” goes on to tell you about every single mistake you made and how it devalued your work. In a situation like this, you are tempted to think “That person always picks on me! He/she must hate me.” What happens next – whether you decide to confront your colleague or seek to avoid any contact with him/her, etc. – is going…

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Get The Most From Your Subordinates With These 11 Do’s And Don’ts Of Providing Effective Feedback

By | Blog, Communication, Customer service | No Comments

Guest blog by: Jillian Petrova Employees require effective feedback in order to deliver their best at work, and it is up to their managers to provide them a productive feedback. But what exactly is “effective” feedback and how can a manager be effective in his or her feedback? Read on to know more about how you as a manager can provide your employees with feedback that will help them deliver their utmost at the workplace. Don’t: Exaggerate Avoid the use of the words “always” and “never” as these will only antagonize your subordinates and not make them receptive to what you have to say to them. Do: Be Timely The best feedback is a feedback that is delivered quickly. If you take your sweet time about delivering the feedback, your subordinate may not recall the exact details of the event that took place, rendering the feedback irrelevant. Don’t: Resort To…

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Making Business Partnerships Work: 5 Steps to Success

By | Blog, Communication, Culture and values, Team building | No Comments

Business partnerships are in many ways similar to marriages. In fact, they require the same, if not even greater, amount of trust, shared values and strong commitment to a balanced, cordial and long-lasting relationship. In both cases it is crucial for potential partners to learn as much as possible about one another before signing off on the deal; partnerships really work only when the parties involved complement one another well, and all partners have something unique to bring to the table, something that enables them to build on and play off each other’s strengths. The many benefits which partnerships have to offer make them a really attractive form of owning a business. Their popularity has been steadily increasing since 1980, according to the IRS Statistics of Income Division (SOI) study of partnerships that was based on Forms 1065 and 1065-B filed during the 2013 calendar year. While they do add…

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Feeling Frustrated by Feedback (or the lack thereof)? 5 Keys to Help Feedback Flourish

By | Behavioral style, Blog, Communication, Team building | No Comments

Employees are a company’s biggest asset. The success or failure of any company is largely determined by how skillful, motivated and productive its employees are. An environment of trust and open communication is crucial for developing an organizational culture in which employees can perform at their peak ability and capacity. Managers benefit by creating and fostering such an environment, and in order to be successful, both managers and employees must be able to exercise a critical skill of giving, as well as receiving, feedback. The many advantages of constructive feedback are widely acknowledged and hailed by a vast majority of present-day business leaders. Timely and sound feedback allows for expedient evaluation and optimization of the employee’s performance, which in turn streamlines organizational processes and communication flow, obviating numerous potential setbacks and the need to spend time and resources correcting them. While recognizing the benefits of constructive feedback, scores of managers…

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You Are Only As Strong As Your Weakest Link – Motivation, A Driving Force Behind Employee Productivity

By | Behavior Style and Values, Blog, Communication, Team building | No Comments

Winston Churchill once said that attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. This is especially true when applied in a workplace setting. Employees who lack enthusiasm, initiative and positive attitude – no matter how brilliant they may be – are no asset to the company. Yet we all can agree that when things at work get mundane and repetitive, it is rather tempting to succumb to the lackluster tedium of the routine and fall into a state of perpetual inertia. The force that can give a hibernating workplace a fresh impetus is motivation. Employees are the heart of a company, and you can think of motivation as a force which propels that heart to pump the blood through the company’s body. Therefore, understanding what motivates employees and being able to exercise these factors is crucial for any manager and business owner. Motivating your employees is likely the…

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Show ’Em, Don’t Just Tell ’Em

By | Blog, Business management and design, Communication, Culture and values, Team building | No Comments

In many companies – small and large – the leaders have the perspective of “Just get it done.” They will promote someone or put them in a role they aren’t fully equipped to do and then expect them to figure it out. There are libraries filled with books on developing management skills, and they sit on the shelves right alongside the books on bad bosses! It seems the “just do it” philosophy doesn’t often work. An article from earlier this year in the Wall Street Journal (Monday, 4/28/14 “Why Managers Are Stuck in Their ‘Silos’”) confirms this phenomenon. Their research shows that while businesses have high expectations of their managers, they don’t do a lot to give them the tools, training and coaching they need to be successful. The article talks about the importance of mentoring programs and staying current. What can the leaders of these companies do to support…

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