Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The Staffer To Fire Right Now

Over 80% of employees surveyed in several recent studies indicated their job satisfaction is most
Employee With Negative Attitude
affected by the mood, attitude and cooperation of their coworkers. Almost 100% of who reported they disliked their work reported their primary aversion is to one specific coworker who is unpleasant.

In any operation, most of the staff will look for ways to work together and achieve together. Unfortunately, there is often one, sometimes a few, employee(s) who prefer to stir things up, gossip, create controversy, and generally be an obstacle to peace and productivity. And even more unfortunate, many bosses feel sorry for these Negative Nancys, and keep them on because "no one else would ever hire them." What gives?

"I can't fire her. She knows too much, and no one can replace her." Or, and this one really drives me crazy, "If he knows he's being fired, who will train his replacement?" Seriously? Whose poor management plan was that who gave this person such an enormous amount of power that they can now hold the whole company hostage? Who does their job when your problem employee goes on vacation?

This is an overwhelming problem to a workforce. When an organization has a personnel problem, there are two consistent places the root of it can be found: either the management staff does not model a team attitude and a terrific work ethic, or someone with a bad attitude or work ethic is being tolerated. In either case, the problem infects everyone else. It is very difficult to hold yourself to a high standard of performance if your boss or your coworkers put no value on doing the same. It could be chronic lateness, foul language, sexist or racist behavior, ugly gossip, drinking on the job, or even theft or falsifying records. Like any problem, these things start small, but as they are tolerated they grow rapidly.

Do your staff a favor. Remove the obstacle staffer, and clean up the example set for your employees. You have warned, discussed, reprimanded, and threatened your problem employee for the last time. They are not irreplaceable, and keeping them may cost you the best parts of the rest of your staff!

The absolute worst choice in this situation is to do nothing. Things will only get worse - they always do, every single time. The first runner-up bad choice is to fire the bad apple without a plan, and end up bringing them back on staff. Make a plan, accept that there are going to be some inconveniences and skinned knees, and show that troublemaker the road. Your organization will begin improving immediately!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Make Your Client Sell Themselves

The sales that last, the sales that earn the most referrals, and the sales that earn the most repeat business, are the sales when the client sells himself.  So we sales pros get the day off, right?  Sadly, it's never that easy!

Sales professionals who can persuade the client to sell themselves are, in fact, the most valuable pros out there.  How do they do it?  It seems counter-intuitive, but those sales pros ask the most questions, listen better, and talk very little.  What are those questions?  These questions!

What issue or need with this purchase fill?  When the client discusses the problem, it increases their sense of urgency.

How does this need affect your business?  The more you know about the need, the more likely you will present the best product to fit the need.  The client is also describing their work process, which makes you better able to address them as an "insider."

How often does this need arise?  When the client mentions the interval of need, they are primed for you to set up your follow-up call.

How does it effect your business when this need in unmet?  You are asking the customer to establish the value of the product on their own terms.  There is no better sales pitch.

What are your business goals?  How does this product help you meet them?  The customer begins describing the use of the product in terms of success in meeting their own goals.

When do you want this solution in place? The client returns themselves to urgency, and the sale is made.

You can do this.  Answer each of their questions succinctly, and then follow up with a question of your own.  Present your solutions in the order of the questions they ask you, don't give them a canned pitch.  If you know your product thoroughly, the client will sell themselves, with only a little prompting from you!