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Your Success Equals Your Customer’s Success


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Note:  Today’s Guest Blog is provided by Pete Aldridge on the topic of customer success.  Pete suggests you s tart with desired customer outcomes and work  backwards. He enables organizations to better engage and build profitable relationships with their  internal and external customers.  ______ Whats happening in this picture?            The Aldridge Family When parting company with a client and each of you has a smile on your face, you achieved customer success.  We are all smiling, right? REALLY smiling! I was smiling the most, (that’s me in upper left)… don’t you think? The photographer used a clever trick to get us beaming this way. Success! My parent...
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Do You Pay Attention to Your Surroundings?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: There is power in keen observation of your surroundings. Indicators exist of whether you are a match with your prospective client or employer. But before jumping to a conclusion, it’s best first to verify what you believe to be true by asking questions. My Story About Surroundings Long ago, it was with excitement that I was about to hear Robert Kennedy speak at the Ambassador Hotel. Arriving early, I noticed the energy level picking up as more people entered the room. A short time later, RFK entered the room and stepped into the center of the stage. As a rush of people followed him on the platform, Kennedy was pushed, lost his balance and almost fell ont...
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Do You Push Seemingly Easy Sales?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: As a salesperson, it is irritating to have others push their seemingly easy sales on me. Two recent incidents prompt today’s blog. My Story About Seemingly Easy Sales Please be forewarned that an easy sale rarely exists. Even when referrals from a good friend come your way, conversations take twists and turns. How we handle the questions, disconnects and surprising suggestions, determines the outcome. Those who appear to want the easy sale come across as lazy. Below are two examples of what took place the past few days: Example #1 An easy-to-relate-to incident was via email. The sender sent an irritated follow-up note stating that I was about to miss out i...
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How Do You View Customer Care?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Some businesspeople disregard the importance of customer care. It is the attention to both the details and people that differentiates the successful. My Story It’s safe to say that everyone will routinely make a purchase. But most overlook the free sales training. Lessons from the transactions alert us to what we are to avoid. Examples of Poor and Good Customer Care 1. The non-functioning link  Numerous attempts to fix my link were fruitless. Customer service later admitted that the service is no longer available. Improved Approach:      A.  Notify consumers when a partnership ceases to exists      B.  After 90 days stop notification that a service ended 2...
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Do You Communicate An Improved Future?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: The posting for a rental had me laughing upon reading the description of an improved future. Remarkably, the person is an engineer but would make a great salesperson given his humor, too. My Story We each have a starting point in our careers. Stepping stones teach us how to improve the effort. My hurdles to overcome was the fear of how to speak to potential clients. Public speaking courses and sales practice taught me: Become comfortable sharing stories Inquire of clients about their experiences both personal and business Use tasteful humor Describe the improved future when people select your services Confirm every single statement with action The snippet ...
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Do You Study the Averages?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: It is always good to research the averages for your endeavors. But the error many sales trainers make is to suggest we strive for those numbers. Bad Idea! My Story Sports and sales strategy have much in common. Most notable is the strong desire to win the game. Therefore, having a goal of achieving the averages doesn’t cut it. One example comes from the days of knocking on doors in a territory, before the internet. A trainer suggested to the class that the average successful representative made fifty cold calls per day. Leaving the desire to be average behind, I set out to record sixty encounters per day. The effort paid off in the way of bonuses and rec...
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How Do You Define Client Needs?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Everyone knows that addressing client needs encourages more sales. But do you dig in enough to understand what motivates each client to buy – and – remain loyal? My Story There are two initial steps for identifying client needs as we head toward a sale In meetings.  It is best to ask each client where they see a need. Once you have an answer, follow up with many more questions including ‘why’ and ‘how do you see the solution?’ First-hand insight always outperforms working with assumptions. Part two is the examination of our habits when we are the client. We each have our criteria for selecting a vendor. The more we understand our unique decision-making p...
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Do You Use Mentoring to Build Business?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Do You Use Mentoring to Build Business Multiple methods are available for using mentoring to build a business. Whether you are seeking a new job or wanting to advance your company, consider the possibilities. Everyone has a unique experience and can contribute to the conversation. My Story A talented marketing person once advised me to use social media as a mentoring platform.  I was to give away my best insights for the conversation to continue. There are always two sides to every story. Others said I would lose everything if I were to give away insights for free. But the opposite happened.  My following steadily grew. As we continue to mentor, we are wit...
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Do You Ask for Protocol on Follow-up


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Tenacity in follow-up is essential for successful sales. However, following the ‘rules of the game’ will make or break your record. My Story on Follow-Up Early in my sales career, it was frustrating to have conversations seemingly fade away. On my second job, a sales manager advised our team that we call prospects every single day until they say, ‘yes. ‘ Any sane person knows the suggested method is a very poor one! The last thing you want to do is turn off a prospective client. A businessperson’s mission is to keep lines of communication open and maintain an overflowing pipeline at all times. It was evident that I was the one who needed to take the lead...
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Do You Combine Social and Business?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Combining a social element with business invites creative thought. Consider how you may mix the two for a fuller sales pipeline. My Story On occasion, I will go out to coffee or lunch with a business associate to catch up on the news or become more familiar with one another. Invariably, new ideas arise that promote motivation for pursuing next steps. In the meantime, we enjoy the ambiance of the environment and further build our friendship. Last week’s casual lunch shed light on how much an associate and I have in common of a personal nature. And by the time we parted, I was provided with two ideas that are currently in the research stage. On my end, an ...
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How Do You Intend to Lead?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: The way in which people lead comes in a variety of styles as we witness every day at work and in the news. Consistency in the way you typically behave and approach matters will define your leadership capabilities. My Story Most people believe that being boisterous and outspoken are the traits of leaders. But that isn’t necessarily so. Those who disagree with conventional thinking will do their own thing for a long while. Eventually, the loners come out stronger at the other end. During the lapse of time, they can more easily focus on what they believe to be essential. In the end, they land far ahead of the curve and are then seen as a leader. The topic a...
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Are You Adding Value to Client Services?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: In comparison to previous years, the accountant provided extraordinary value in his client services. Although tax time is never fun, the process was painless this time. My Story Given accounting is out of my league, much faith and trust go into presenting the tax planner with information. Fortunately, my sales experience includes reading body language and at times, hearing unwelcome implications. When it comes to monetary matters, one has to be careful that everything appears to be in order. One accountant’s words from the past remain forever in our memory. He is known for saying, “I can’t advise you to do this, but some people would…” It was on to the n...
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Display Signage Increases Audience Interest


Diversifying your marketing strategies works to your benefit for business growth. One avenue to consider is display signage to communicate your brand, your message, and enthusiasm for your business. Note: Today’s guest blog is by Feather Flag Nation .  Outdoor billboards and banners attracted my attention in my youth. As a passenger in the car, I would read all of the signage as we moved passed.  I was also drawn to the creative advertising jingles of long ago. Taking note of marketing and advertising moved me toward a sales career. Upon entering entrepreneurship, the need to pay attention to marketing and advertising once again became evident. It is the online organic reach plus a comprehen...
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Are You Making These Communication Errors?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Our communication style determines our outcome for sales.  Clients appreciate the professionally personal style that builds relationships and business. The process begins with a smile and the motivation to serve others well. My Story Three incidents illustrate that we all need to pay careful attention to what we say.  Consistent actions are to follow. #1 Admit the Problem Lee asked that I provide him with a video testimonial. I admire his work and promptly agreed. However, technology changes so quickly that the words were out of sync as I spoke. Given the gentleman’s business prowess, I asked if he could recommend a different service. His suggestion was ...
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Are You Ready to Climb the Career Ladder?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: When we heed the challenge, climbing the career ladder takes both strategy and motivation. The question is, are you comfortable with being in over your head somewhat to move beyond today’s achievement? My Story The only way to overcome fear is to be so highly motivated that nothing will interfere with your progress. But with the motivation comes a need for common sense. A flexible plan of action is to be put in place. As we all know, not everyone agrees with our perspective, and not everything works out as we expect. Advancing the career ladder is similar to being in sales. Far many more ‘no’s’ will come our way than the desired ‘yes!’ The best we can do i...
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Do You Value Yourself to Speak Up?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: Personal obligations plus work will often take away from the attention you occasionally need to give yourself to speak up. However, to do any job well, it’s important to pay attention to what you hold important. My Story The mantra I heard every single day from my Dad was, “never give up, just find a better way.” In today’s environment, concerning what we hold socially acceptable, the advice is more important than ever. In honor of International Women’s Day, we have reason to celebrate, but with an equal distance filled with challenges ahead of us. In the earlier days, women were not unified and stepped on one another to gain the attention of a man. It did...
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How Do You Define Value?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: I n the sales environment, clients view value as an all-encompassing package. The sentiment is, ‘people buy you,’ but only if they have a good reason. Make the delivery of value an experience plus a team event. My Story of Developing Value It was with delight that I connected with someone whose career was spent in the construction industry. While we spoke, story after story came to mind about the excellent client associations I developed with two international construction companies. At first, I could not gain access inside either of the corporate offices.  One day, I decided to do something out of the ordinary. Upon seeing a company sign in front of a l...
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Where Are You On the Confidence Meter?


  Attract the Right Job or Clientele: The question was asked, ‘Don’t all successful people have confidence?’ Just as one approach does not suit all, not everyone among the talented is fully confident. Being the salesperson, I offered the reasoning behind my answer.  And an exchange of insights is the expectation versus the silence. On a side note, I welcome your input on how you see leaders incorporating confidence into their everyday work. My Story About Confidence Not only is it my story about questioning if I can get to the next level, but many people also share the same. However, the ‘if’ is quickly followed by ‘How will I do it?” And then the plan of action takes root. Those motivated t...
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Are You Aware of Business Lessons Leading Up to A Crime Scene?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: A day off to celebrate an occasion turned into one of concern as we slowly approached the crime scene. There were business lessons to learn on several levels. My Story It was my turn to celebrate a special day off. My choice was to visit the Native American museum in D.C. I found the experience to be highly inspirational and enjoyable. A smile came over me as I saw a sign mentioning Quechua, the language of the Incas. One of my first business meetings took place in San Francisco. There, I met a woman who was born in Peru. Anna was taken by complete surprise as I recalled a sentence in Quechua that was learned in college. We quickly considered ourselves as ...
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Are You Selling Value?


Attract the Right Job or Clientele: It is always surprising when people approach selling a product without mentioning the value it will provide. Without drawing the picture of why services are needed, representatives need to drop their pricing versus holding steady. My Story In the initial stages of a sales career, the process is nerve-wracking at best. Pressure is put upon salespeople to make their numbers, and their livelihood depends upon making it happen. Should a representative give into fear, they quickly lower the price. The unfortunate pieces are commission is almost non-existent, and clients see no reason for loyalty. Instead, the initial sale is a one-time event. On the entrepreneu...
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