Bite-Size Chunks of Wisdom

July 2010

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Prior to the economy tanking in the fall of 2008, business came relatively easy to most.  Regardless of the sales competency level, there seemed to be enough business to go around.  Even those highly skilled in building trust, uncovering needs, and providing a solution, admit their sales skills had gone ‘soft’ during the good times.  Needless to say, smart business owners are sharpening their sales skills once again.

There are, however, those daring few who have yet to master the 21st century sales skills needed to make the sale.  Here are a few one-liners we’ve experienced firsthand the past week that put a nail in the sales coffin. (Pardon our sarcasm.)

  1. “I don’t know what you do”.  (From a cold call made to our office offering a product/service.)  Really?  Didn’t you do your homework on our company before you made this call?
  2. “I’m new at this”.  (From a cold call made to our office offering a product/service.)  Seriously?  Why would we want to do business with you?
  3. “Call our office on Monday.”  (From an email received from a potential vendor that we could refer.)  What?  Your company doesn’t offer customer service?
  4. “Can you call to remind me?” (From a call made to a potential vendor that could be referred.)   Honestly?  Do I look like your administrative assistant?
  5. “I’ll get that right out to you”.  (From a vendor from whom we were ready to purchase.)  Excuse me.  Can you clarify what “right now” means?  We’ve been waiting, with credit card in hand, for 10 days now.

This is honestly what goes through our mind – and the minds of your potential buyers – when such deadly one-liners are heard or read.  Undoubtedly you’ve heard some good one-liners yourself…..hopefully not from us!

Strategic Coaching Takeaway: Avoiding killing the sale by arming yourself with research on your potential client and some well-thought out, well-rehearsed scripts that demonstrate you’re here to help.

When you’ve worked with a service provider for a long period of time, it can be difficult to suspend the service being provided. Through the years, you’ve come to rely on the service provider to help you grow your business. They’re like a member of the family!  How could you possibly move forward without them?  But, what do you do when they haven’t kept up with the times? When the service they provide is stuck in 2004?

As a small business owner, your resources are limited.  You probably don’t have an extra bag of money sitting in the back room to waste.  Each dollar must be spent wisely toward the growth and development of your business.

As you know, technology and social media are rapidly changing how we do business.  If your service provider isn’t keeping up with the newest advancements in their industry, it could negatively impact your business’ ability to grow.  The service your business is receiving could be outdated.

A  good service provider has their ear to the ground listening for the latest developments that can give your business a competitive edge.  They are an integral part of the team pulling your business forward. They are a solution provider.

Strategic Coaching Takeaway:  Evaluate each service provider contracted with your business to determine if  they are service providers or solution providers.  Keep the solution providers.

In the movie, Alice in Wonderland, Alice Kingsleigh, a precocious and somewhat defiant young lady, finds herself in the world of Underland where she discovers that her purpose is to slay the horrific giant, Jabberwocky, and restore the White Queen to her rightful throne.

Along her journey, she encounters a variety of unusual characters (White Rabbit, Dormouse, Dodo bird, a couple of Tweedles) who argue whether she’s the “right” Alice – the one with the power to eliminate the Jabberwocky.

Not being convinced she’s the “wrong” Alice (this is her dream, after all) she reluctantly prepares for her attack by “strategic coaching” she learned from her father.  Her father, a wealthy shipping magnate, claims to have talked of six impossible things before breakfast.

Alice gathers her strength and courage by naming the six impossible things she accomplished since her arrival in Underland. She slays the Jabberwocky! And, they all celebrate with the Fudderwupping dance.

Sound familiar?  Isn’t it allot like the journey through entrepreneurship (Underland) where you have to be abit of a rebel or a maverick (Alice) to succeed?

As you build your business, you encounter all sorts of “advisors” (White Rabbit, Tweedles, etc) who try to convince you that business is not your “cup of tea” (Sorry.  I couldn’t resist the pun.)

But, you know your purpose – to overcome the challenges of cash flow (Jabberwocky) and establish your business (White Queen) on the first page of Google (the throne).

With the competition vying for your spot, you prepare (strategic coaching) to approach each day with strategies that place you and your business in the right frame of mind to succeed (six impossible things before breakfast).  And, you mark your achievements by ringing the bell on the NYSE (Fudderwupping dance).

The morale of this story?  Avail yourself of strategic coaching to get the Jabberwocky out of the way.

Core Business Assessment


Brooke Billingsley

Vice President
Perception Strategies

Synnovatia is a strategic coaching firm that is detailed and knowledgeable about business. i have a small business that grew from $150K to $750K because of the goal setting and resources that Synnovatia provided. It saves me years of learning on my own.

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