By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 10/16/2020
Published in American Printer

“Only the paranoid… survive…”……Andrew Grove, CEO of Intel

INTRODUCTION:

We are now approaching… The Annual “Snooker The Boss” Season…in the middle of Covid-19……it’s budget for next year time…. “What are we going to sell next year…by Quarter….by Customer…..?”

hourglass

But let’s take a moment, and “look beneath the covers”….……something smells different…..

Is there … a sense of urgency… in your Business Development Team,….in your Business Development Team’s efforts……in their Business Development decisions….?

Recently, I offered that most companies had far more records re. their top customers job specifications…purchases….and pricing…..than knowing what their top customers wanted to: (a) accomplish….their (b) priorities….(c) their sources of pain……..their (d) ambitions…..!

There’s not a single customer you have…whose market and operating conditions have not changed…..radically….yet….your Senior Management… is not in serious, intimate  discussions re. how your organization….can lift your top customers’ future…….

It’s far easier to stay in your plant…in your office…..and at the desk…..rather than in your top customers plant(s)…and offices….

I’ll never forget the client president who said, “Now’s not a good time for us to have you conduct a Customer Survey for us….we won’t get good, complimentary marks and responses… at this time……(!)”…….(When will you know…?)

Then there was the client Customer Survey we produced two years back, which according to their V.P. of Sales — generated well over $500,000 in additional business opportunities — at current customers.

Why wouldn’t they conduct another Customer Survey… this year….?

So this past week, the top performing Sales Rep, for the client we’d just finished-up 3.5 weeks of Inside Sales Team Education and Training — was assembling several “Packages of Top Samples” — to send to his Top Prospects — Samples selected….that were appropriate — for each Buyer’s company….!

You see…though he was a star in that 3.5 week class, doing research homework every night — he still is on course to sell $7 million – this year…and the Reps around him…are watching… and parroting…almost everything he does….everything he learned in those 3.5 weeks….everything he endorsed….!

SUMMARY:

Human nature hasn’t changed much over the last 2 million years.

Comfort beats change and discomfort…nine out of ten times…..until….conditions reach the breaking point.

Our industry is getting “close”…..to that breaking point…. And some believe the worst is still in front of us….we just can’t see it yet…..

You can’t fake “fire in the belly”….you can’t make great, new things happen in the midst of a once in a lifetime pandemic…with the same approach….and lack of urgency.

“With all that’s happening on the world stage, are we in the beginning of a long-term war…and just don’t see the reality of what’s coming….?” 

“The most compelling story for us should be the naked truth…the reality…At the end of each day, I told my team what I’d learned and asked what they had picked-up at the outposts we’d visited.  They often came back with information I hadn’t heard…We kept one another informed ”……Secretary of Defense, General Jim Mattis, Call Sign Chaos

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