Leads: Orphans at the Doorstep?


Businesses invest countless hours and dollars to identify, target and educate their customers. Ultimately though all leads emerge as foundlings left at the doorstep of the sales funnel. They are left waiting to be adopted, nourished, and finally molded into our customer. Orphan leads should be potential or repeat customers. They are the key to our business success.

In the sales funnel, leads are heaped into the pipeline to be organized, sorted, qualified, contacted, and transformed into strong, profitable customers. The process is not always quick and obvious, nor are the performers clearly identified, prepared and responsive.

It’s no wonder … Read the rest

Continue to Explore


A recent film, Arrival, presented a tale of potential catastrophe from disruptive change requiring massive adaptation. Aliens have suddenly arrived on earth, their presence mysterious: potentially benign but possibly threatening.

Confronted with a new normal, we had to find the right people with the proper abilities to adapt. The aliens offered us a “gift,” but we had to translate their reality to ours. We argued among ourselves whether that the gift was a tool or a weapon.

Ultimately, in the movie, we learn the gift was a tool, and that tool was the alien language and alien sense of … Read the rest

Should Principal Field Visits Be a Production?


The old expression goes, “Don’t make a production out of this,” referring to the 1930s Busby Berkeley musical movies, when the centerpiece is a complicated, ornate dance routine, dominating the film, taking seemingly forever! Glitzy, showy, endless tapping and strutting — So don’t make a production number out of this, make it quick, keep it straightforward and simple. Always?

You should, in fact you must, make a production out of some key events because some don’t take care of themselves. Those times need the production values of excellent content, quality script, great participants, superior directing, and lots of post-filming work. … Read the rest

The Importance of Having a Disaster Plan for Your Agency


AKA: Thinking About the Unthinkable

In 1905, nine Morse code strokes established an emergency distress code (or procedural signal or prosing). Now we think of SOS or “Save Our Souls.” The key was the simplicity of the signal. Fast forward to 1968, the first emergency phone call, in Haleyville, Alabama, dial 911 and hear: “What is your emergency?” Again simplicity, speed, immediacy.

Disaster/emergency planning started — at least the initial contact step.

The sequence is:

  1. See/hear/feel the distress.
  2. Estimate the severity and your ability for self control or effort.
  3. Call/reach out as necessary.
  4. Execute your plan.

See the smoke, determine … Read the rest

Defining the Perfect Principal


“Perfection, like beauty,” we’re told, “is in the eye of the beholder.” We all agree but don’t reflect on the lens. What is this mind’s “eye,” the eye that spies the perfect spouse, the perfect family, and of course the perfect life? For “reps” the perfect search is for the perfect principal. How is that perfection imagined?

New Year’s Resolutions reveal that over the year, we’ve gone off track, and they highlight the asymmetry between reality and our often self-defeating “eye’s” vision. Better choice: Look inside, adjust, accept — then define “your perfection.” Define yourself and your business first! The … Read the rest

Asking the Right Questions?


How to plan ahead so you can ask the right questions of customers and principals.

Alice asked the Cat, “Which way ought I to go from here?” The Cheshire Cat responded that “…depends a good deal on where you want to get to.” Alice immediately understood questions were not always the right questions. Questions mark and illuminate the terrain we can’t yet see. They guide us along the turns and rocky inclines to the journey’s end. Asking questions exposes and reveals. However, the questions aren’t necessarily obvious; nor the answers quickly given or true.

Questioning is the prequel to selling. … Read the rest