..................................."Promise Culture"................................... Purpose - Passion - Principles - Promise - People - Plan - Performance - Progress - Preservation

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Labor Day 2018

August 30, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

 

Labor Day 2018

This weekend is “Labor Day.”  Traditionally this weekend marks the end of summer. Children head back to school. Businesses begin to work out the summer blues, vacations, and other distractions. They get ready for the next 3 plus months of work until the end of the calendar year.

This weekend is also a time to reflect on the “Labor” of love that each and everyday you awake to partake in because it fulfills some part of who you are. Each day you invest time, energy, emotion and other resources into the business.

For some, the business is who and all they are.  For others, it is just the expression of their talents. Regardless of which applies to you, this weekend is about reflecting on the contribution through using your talents to build something greater.  To take the God-given talents and through your own free will to apply them in such a way that others can, directly and indirectly, benefit from your business.

So take a few minutes this week and reflect on your business as it is today.  Reflect on the past so you can learn from both the good and bad which you have navigated. Look to the future so you can plan positive strategies which take you and your organization to the next level of results.

As you begin this reflection, capture your thoughts in a journal so you can use them as you begin your next year of business planning.  

Interested in having a stellar 2019? Call JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945 and invite us in to help facilitate your next business planning efforts.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Sales Management

August 23, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Sales Management

Without sales, there is no business. You can have the best products and services but if no one buys them all you have is inventory.

So as business owners we sell to get the business going and then we hire others to sell into the marketplace to grow the business. As this sales team grows, you as the top salesperson in the company not only take on the continuing effort to sell but also are now required to manage other salespeople. This process continues until one day you decide to hire or promote a person to be a sales manager.

This transition does not always come easy and many times the conflict of doing the sale your way vs. another way can get in the way of progress.  There is no question that as the lead owner in the business your passion and your word carry a lot of weight with prospects.  Your actions can affect the closing of a sale where your staff using the same approach get shut down or delayed. 

For these reasons, you need to have a sales process which can be followed to bring a higher number of qualified opportunities into your organization. As the owner of the business, you may or may not have had some prior sales management experience but with whatever tools you have, they have worked to initially grow your business.  That does not necessarily mean it can be repeated consistently going forward.

This week take a look at your sales approach – not the marketing and advertising side of the opportunity creation but from the step of identifying a meaningful qualified lead to the point of making a prospect your longterm customer – closing the sale.  The entire sales pipeline can be cultivated more effectively and efficiently by having a defined approach and system for qualifying and investing company resources into an opportunity.

In your business, there is the process of managing a specific sale and there is the process for managing all of the sales and future revenues for the company.  Some salespeople are great at managing their own individual sales but fail or flounder when being placed in a management role to manage the sales pipeline for the entire company.  In one case the person needs prospect interpersonal skills and in the other, they need both prospect skills and internal company team skills.  Motivating a prospect to buy is different from motivating other salespeople to sell.

Unfortunately, I have witnessed too many company owners promoting their best salesperson to be a sales manager only to have them fail in that role.  Once this happens, your best salesperson typically can’t stay at the company as a salesperson as they may be looked at as having failed or been demoted.  They then go to sell against you at the competition. This can and has been successfully navigated by companies JKL Associates has worked with by having a complete upfront understanding of expectations and the exit plan should it not work out.  Both parties are kept whole and both understand the value of each role in the success of the individual and the organization alike.

Looking at your sales team and needing to reflect on potential changes? Call JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945 to navigate to an effective strategy.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Time for your Annual Checkup

August 16, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Time for your Annual Checkup

As business owners, we should be in touch with the pulse of our organization. We use metrics to let us know how we are doing. We measure such things as Profit & Loss, productive hours, return rates, turnover and many other indicators of how well the business is doing. Based on these indicators, decisions are made for investments, changes, expansion, growth etc.  When the metrics are good then positive actions take place.  When the metrics are weak or trending in that direction then we view them as potential symptoms of other issues which need attention and plans to correct.

It all just seems to be part of the natural running of a strong business.

The question then must be asked – why then do so many business owners not take the time to get the same metric input regarding their personal health?

Each year starting in August, many businesses start the annual process of business planning for the upcoming calendar year.  They look at the first 7 or 8 months and trend a forecast as to how the business will end up on December 31 of this year.  The effort to plan out strategies for 2019 begins with re-evaluating products and services.  Possible outside influences of the industry and of competition get factored into the plan and so on. Business plans and strategies emerge into a set of both tactical and strategic actions to bring a defined result to the future of the business.  This annual analysis of health checkup takes place and is considered a proactive way to build a stronger organization and profit.

As logical and natural as this set of steps are to the running of the business, the owners or lead resources in the company do not take the same effort or energy to protect one of their most valuable assets – themselves.

As critical to building a successful business as having a defined “Promise Culture” where purpose, passion, and promises provide a solid framework to growth, so too is the foundation of a healthy leadership team.

This week take the time to schedule your annual physical if you have not already had one in the past 12 months.  Yes, it takes a short time away from the business and maybe you really don’t want to hear the doctor say this or that about your health, but it is better to know the indicators of your health will support the plan of your business.  

Although we at JKL Associates are not in the medical profession, we are in the business building arena.  Why build it if you can’t enjoy it or perpetuate it into value for your future portfolio. Need help with the business planning portion of building your business? Call us at (313) 527-7945.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Three Little Pigs Businesses

August 9, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Three Little Pigs Businesses

Most of us know the story of the Three Little Pigs and their three houses made of straw, sticks, and bricks.  The first two pigs which quickly built their houses of straw and sticks laughed at the third pig because their houses were completed very quickly and they could then sing and dance while the third pig worked diligently on the building of the brick house.

Ultimately, when the big bad wolf came along and destruction came to the first two houses and the pigs needed to seek shelter from the third pig in the brick house is when they realized there short-sighted view of building their houses.

Although this story can have many meanings, this week as you focus on the building of your business, you need to look at the foundation and framework your business is being built upon.  A weak framework and foundation cannot withstand the daily challenges of a marketplace which demands great things of a business.  You end up building and rebuilding your business after each and every change in the marketplace.  In other words, you continue to work in the business rather than work on the business to build it better.  The third pig, who started out taking time to build a solid structure, can now work on the house doing improvements to build it even better rather than having to rebuild it from outside threats.

The foundation of your business is not your unique product or service that you ultimately deliver to your customers.  It is the purpose, culture, and core values that are the foundation of how the business is to be conducted.  Your products and services will change and evolve with the demands of the marketplace.  Your foundation you build your company on must be as solid as the brick home the third pig built.

This week as you build your company, look at some of the recurring issues that are taking you away from building and pulling you back into repairing your business. These are symptoms of issues which are far more central to the growth of the business.  Like building with sticks and straw, if you don’t take the time to address these fundamental issues, they only create more and more downstream problems for the business.  The first place you must look at is yourself.  Ownership does not automatically translate into leadership of the business. More frequently than one might think, the business owner is a contributor to the chaos.  Dictating and demanding, yelling and screaming, ranting and raving to your staff is not acceptable.  Employees tolerate it for various reasons but eventually, they disengage and performance drops dramatically. This only infuriates the owner and more of the same behaviors take place.  Muck like the big bad wolf, the owner huffs, and puffs until all the good employees are blown away to the competition.

Interested in having a business scan of your organization done to see what are symptoms and what are actual issues? Give JKL Associates a call at (313) 527-7945 to start building your business of bricks.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Marketing – Helping your competition beat you

August 2, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Marketing – Helping your competition beat you

Recently this past July 16th, online retailer Amazon had a “Prime” day. They offered up various deals for their “Prime” members to participate in. The privilege of being a “Prime” member comes at a cost of membership.  The membership touts free 2 day shipping on Prime products plus other member benefits etc.  For those avid Amazon shoppers, the cost of admission to be a “Prime” member can be cost effective when you add up the price of shipping the goods to your home or office.

This same benefit to “Prime” members also has become the marketing attack point for various other retailers who compete with Amazon.  For example, you may have seen the ads for Walmart and how their 2 day shipping is also free and there are no membership costs.  Other retails have followed suit to talk about their free this or that with out having membership fees. On that magical day in July for Amazon Prime Members, many other retailers took that opportunity to chime in on their free – no cost services without having to pay membership fees.

Now many of you are not in competition with Amazon or Walmart but you do have direct competitors who are always looking to take business away from you.  In fact, many of JKL Associates clients must grow their revenue stream, not with accounts that are new to the marketplace but are currently receiving services from some other source.  Most of the marketplace is saturated with various product or service providers.  Most mature businesses already have a supplier list and generally are loyal until some event takes place which causes them to seek a new supplier.

It is these moments that your marketing efforts must be in place to potentially capture a new client to your business. These moments are not necessarily easy to identify or predict.  Therefore your marketing efforts need to keep your products and services top of mind with your potential customers.  In the case of the Amazon “Prime” day, this was a well-publicized event and competing retailers took full advantage of trying to separate themselves from membership fees.

This week, take a look at your Top Of Mind awareness program (i.e. marketing) and what it is or is not doing for your business.  Are your efforts attracting your target consumer? Does your “Brand” resonate with the clients which would be best serviced by your products or services?  What paths are you taking to put your best light in front of your customers – social media, direct mail, trinkets, and gadgets? Do your proposals and quotes reflect the commitment your business will make to your prospect?

The key here is not to help your competition beat you but to raise the bar so your competition has to rethink their approach in the marketplace.  While they are rethinking you can be poised to take advantage of this gap in time.  This only works if you are Top of Mind with your prospective customer.

Need some objective review of your business strategies –  call JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945 and let’s get started.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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