Archive for April, 2011

90 Day Sales Makeover – How do You Measure Your Plan?

Posted on April 29, 2011. Filed under: 90 Day Sales Makeover, Management Concepts | Tags: , , |

…this blog is a continuation of the six core beliefs in the 90-Day Sales Makeover.

Measure Your Plan

Have you heard the song “Seasons of Love” from RENT? It’s one of my favorite songs. The lyrics begin with:

Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?

In daylights, in sunsets
In midnights, in cups of coffee
In inches, in miles, in laugher, in strife
In five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, a year in the life?

As Greg and I were developing the 90-Day Makeover, I couldn’t help but think of this song. You have 90 days…how are you going to measure those 90 days?  Or, if you were creating your own song,

One hundred twenty-nine thousand, six hundred minutes
One hundred twenty-nine thousand, six hundred minutes
One hundred twenty-nine thousand, six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure your plan?

In calls made, in confidence,
In prospects, in appointments set
In sales made, in renewals, in referrals, in income
How do you measure, measure your plan?

No matter what improvement plan you start, be it this sales makeover, a fitness program, or a house renovation, you have to determine what you want to accomplish and how you’re going to measure success. What are your goals?  What does success look like for you and this plan?

By setting goals and focusing the things you need to learn and accomplish each day on that day, you’ll be pretty amazed at your success in 90 days. But you can’t just wish success…you have to work for success. And in order to work for success, you have to know what success you’re working for.

So…the question is, how do you measure, measure your plan?


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90 Day Sales Makeover

Posted on April 18, 2011. Filed under: 90 Day Sales Makeover, Management Concepts |

As you might know, I partner with Greg Bennett to offer sales and customer experience consulting, coaching, and training. Greg and I are launching a new offering today – the 90 Day Sales Makeover. With this program, you work one day at a time, over three months, to radically change your mindset and improve your skill set, resulting in greater sales success. You don’t have to be a traditional salesperson to benefit from this program…the lessons you learn and habits you create are useful in any role in which you need to build a network, problem solve, and influence people.

Over the next several days, I’m going to be posting the core beliefs of this program. You’ll see guests posts from Greg in addition to my posts. If you’re interested in finding more, closing more, and keeping more (prospects and clients, that is), please contact us and we’ll chat with you about the 90 Day Sales Makeover. And now on to the first core belief.

Focus Only on Making Today Excellent

When you put your focus only on the day at hand, and on making this day excellent, you aren’t wasting time dwelling on the past and what might have been, or fretting about the future and what could happen to you.  You only worry about making today excellent.

How will you make today excellent?


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Sportsmanship – An Amazing Video

Posted on April 7, 2011. Filed under: Customer Experience, Good Habits |

I received this link from a friend of mine and had to pass it on. In a world too often filled with competition, back-stabbing, and bickering, we sometimes get a glimpse of true heart and character…and in situations that catch us by surprise. I hope this story inspires you as much as it did me. Take a peek.

Game Winning Homerun Turns Tragic – Inspiring Display of Sportsmanship

Have a superb day and let your best heart and character shine!



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A Day in the Life…

Posted on April 5, 2011. Filed under: Customer Experience, Customer Focus, Differentiated Messaging |

We see it on TV, in magazines, even on the web. “A Day in the Life…” Whether the focus in on the president, business executives, celebrities, teachers, Olympic hopefuls, Miss America, or some other interesting character…you name it, we seem to be obsessed with a day in the life of those we don’t know.

But are we obsessed with knowing what a day in the life of our customer looks like? I’d venture a guess to say few of us are. I find it interesting that we care so much about the lives of people we’ll never touch and yet ignore the lives of our customers who we may touch every single day. Instead, we tend to assume what that day looks like. And you know the risk with the tendency to assume.

So if you want to improve your ability to be relevant to your customers, what are you to do about it? Here’s a thought: find out what a day in the life of your customer looks like. You can shadow them, much like reporters do with those people whose lives we read about…but that might get kind of weird in some situations. For instance, if you’re a dentist, your patients may not get all excited about having you follow them around, watching what they eat, how often they brush their teeth, how often they “forget” to floss.  A viable alternative might be to ask them. Focus groups and traditional customer research are great for this, as are intentional conversations. Ask your customers what a day in their lives are like. Actively listen, ask questions, be present in the conversation, and you’ll be amazed at how much insight you gain.

Having these conversations will help you understand the critical objectives of your customers and the challenges that keep them from reaching their objectives. That allows you to develop and position solutions that address the pain points and message in the sweet spot – that area where your customers have needs that you can address with differentiated solutions.

You can assume all you want, create personas until your brain bursts, and dream the loftiest dreams, but until you are obsessed with a day in the life of your customers, you will be guessing at the solutions and messaging that are relevant to them. But once you get a picture of a day in their life, you’ll be able to focus on them with pinpoint accuracy. And though “a day in the life” of your customers may not be TV-ready, what you find will be pretty interesting and exciting for your business.


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The Magic of Roy’s

Posted on April 1, 2011. Filed under: Brand Promise, Customer Experience, Practical Branding |

My husband, Don, has a penchant for Roy’s Restaurant – Hawaiian Fusion Cuisine. His penchant is so great that he has a goal to visit all 33 locations across the US. We had the pleasure of meeting RoyYamaguchi, world-renowned chef and founder of Roy’s, last fall during a visit to Hawaii.  He and his team members have been intrigued about Don’s quest, as he’s the first person they’ve met with such a goal. As such, this quest has given rise to a “challenge of the restaurants” since he reached number 15.

A couple months ago, I was with Don when we visited Roy’s number 29 and 30, and we were treated to phenomenal customer experiences both evenings. I have to tell you the stories.

I should start this by telling you that Bryson Keens, Managing Partner of the Roy’s in Baltimore, has become a champion of my husband’s quest and now calls each Roy’s prior to Don’s visit to let them know they have a Roy’s aficionado coming. Whatever he says to his colleagues tends to bring out the absolute best creativity in them. So, the first night, we dined at Roy’s in Bonita Springs (#29), Sondra Hon, the Managing Partner there, came to greet us and get to know us. We received a special appetizer, compliments of Sondra, and gifts of two beautiful martini glasses and Hawaiian motif USB drives. We were treated like royalty the entire evening and felt like we were dining with good friends all around us.

The second evening, we visited the Roy’s in Naples (#30). Upon arrival, we were seated at the “seen and be seen” table, which was reserved for us and overlooked the entire restaurant. We began talking to the Managing Partner, David Lamarca, who graciously came to welcome us. Jerry, our waiter, was anxiously watching us and when we finally stopped chatting, he immediately came over and said Chef Eric (Delano) was waiting for us with a special appetizer. We thought the appetizer was prepared and waiting in the kitchen. But no, indeed Chef Eric was waiting to come out and create this appetizertableside for us. What a treat to watch him prepare seared tuna, lobster bisque, and marinated mushrooms as he described the ingredients and the preparation of each. We had a lovely conversation with him until he had to return to the kitchen! Following a fabulous meal and glass of wine, Jerry brought out dessert for us – Roy’s molten chocolate cake. Our tab, to our amazement, was nearly zero as the restaurant had provided most of our dinner with their compliments. Before the evening was over another waiter, Carlos, stopped by just to say hi and thanks for the loyalty. Carlos wasn’t our waiter; he simply saw a special experience and made a decision to “up” the ante a bit. More martini glasses (we now have a set of four), a photograph for posterity, and we were sent home very full and very happy.

So, great story you say, but what are the take-aways? Consider these three:

  1. If you’ve never been to a Roy’s, you need to go – fabulous food, amazing atmosphere, and wonderful people.
  2. Each Managing Partner and Chef Partner we’ve met (and we’ve met quite few) lives the Roy’s brand. We see how Roy’s managers and chefs emulate the spirit he personally brings to his conversations and, obviously, his career. For example, how fun is the rivalry Bryson Keens has evoked among the partners based on his enthusiasm over Don’s quest?
  3. Living the brand through the customer experience goes beyond the Managing and Chef Partners to every employee. Carlos took it upon himself to come over to us, even though he wasn’t our waiter. He’s not the first Roy’s waiter or hostess to do that…they all make us feel special.

Feeling special, feeling valued…isn’t that what we want our customers to feel? But in the throes of the workday, how many of us make the intentional decision to do that? It’s easy to forget. But remember, what your customers see, what they hear, what they touch, and how they interact with you defines their customer experience. Roy’s gets it and has made the decision to make customers feel valued.

Don will make it all the Roy’s restaurants…and honestly, we can’t wait to see what’s in store at each one along the way!

Wouldn’t it be great if your customers felt the same way?


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