Leading Your Team One Step At A Time

If you want to get far in business, one of the primary factors that you can’t afford to ignore is ensuring that your management team are as professional as possible. They are among your most important staff members, and it is vital that you hire people you think will succeed in leading your team in however they need to be led. Of course, there are always certain characteristics which you will need to look out for if you want your team to be led well, and it is worth looking into what those are. Let’s have a look at some of the more important qualities now, so that you can help to lead your teams as well as possible.

StrategyDriven Management and Leadership Article
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Confidence To Lead

People will generally have a much easier time following someone if they appear to have the confidence to lead. This is something that you can’t really overlook when you are thinking of who should lead your teams. You probably don’t want to put in charge someone who is unable to display confidence in front of groups of people. However, it is also true that sometimes less confident people have better ideas. It seems fair to try and draw a balance, and not to immediately dismiss those who might not be strongly confident in comparison to others. Confidence, after all, is something which can be learned, and it is good to give people the chance to prove themselves. Sometimes, you find real gems this way, and it favors your business massively in the long run.

Cool Head In Emergencies

Being prepared for the worst is a good idea in business generally and in leaders in particular. No matter what happens, you need to be able to know that your management team will be able to properly deal with it. It is therefore a good idea to choose managers who appear to have a cool head, and who would continue to do so in an emergency situation. There are all kinds of emergencies which can crop up in business, and preparing for as many of them as possible always puts you in a good stead. You’ll find that your managers are more adept at remaining calm particularly if you have a number of good emergency procedures in place – get business insurance online, have a risk assessment done, coincide with all safety laws. This all helps, and your management will probably appreciate it.

StrategyDriven Management and Leadership Article
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Easygoing Communication

The ability to communicate well with others is always going to be paramount for your management staff. When you can communicate strongly, it means that you are more likely to get things done properly and on time, and it also means that relationships in the working culture can be developed much more easily and fluently. Make sure your managers are all the kind of people that other can talk to easily – this really does make a world of difference when it comes to getting things done on a daily basis, and creating a positive working culture.

Jeffrey Gitomer

Your Missing Power: Master Mind

Perhaps the most powerful principle Napoleon Hill wrote about, and certainly the most enduring, is the 9th step towards riches: Power of the Master Mind. The idea of a Master Mind group was created, put forth, and expounded upon by Napoleon Hill in his two classic books, Think and Grow Rich, written in 1937, and “How to Sell Your Way Through Life, written in 1938.

If you want to have a better, easier, more fun, more productive, less frustrating (sound good so far?), more bountiful, and more profitable life: Create a Master Mind. A Master Mind group can help you and your business succeed far better and far faster than you can on your own.

Hill defines Master Mind as, “Coordination of knowledge and effort, in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people, for the attainment of a definite purpose.”

In other words – people working together in harmony to get to ‘best answer,’ ‘best response,’ ‘best ideas,’ or ‘best strategy’ to any situation or issue.

You have problems, issues, and concerns. Do you think you’re the ONLY person facing your issues and concerns? Come on, really now? My bet is that every one of your colleagues and connections have exactly the same issues. So, eh, why are yours reoccurring?

Why didn’t that deal go through? Why aren’t your calls getting returned? Why are you having a challenge to set a meeting? Why are you having major blockage to get to the decision-maker? Huh? Why?

Because you have not yet created your own Master Mind. A group of peers facing the very same issues in their life.

Hill stresses and uses the word POWER in conjunction with MASTER MIND. Hill says, “POWER may be defined as ‘organized and intelligently directed KNOWLEDGE.’ Power refers to ORGANIZED effort, sufficient to enable an individual to transmute DESIRE into its monetary equivalent.

ORGANIZED effort is produced through the coordination of effort of two or more people, who work toward a DEFINITE end, in a spirit of harmony.” He goes on in all capital letters to say, “POWER IS REQUIRED FOR THE ACCUMULATION OF MONEY! POWER IS NECESSARY FOR THE RETENTION OF MONEY AFTER IT HAS BEEN ACCUMULATED!”

Hill says, “POWER comes from accumulated and organized knowledge.” That’s what the Master Mind helps build. He also says, “If POWER is accumulated and organized knowledge, let’s examine the sources:

INFINITE INTELLIGENCE. This source of knowledge may be contacted through the procedure described in chapter 6, with the aid of Creative Imagination.
ACCUMULATED EXPERIENCE. The accumulated experience of man or woman, (or that portion of it which has been organized and recorded), may be found in any well-equipped public library. An important part of this accumulated experience is taught in public schools and colleges, where it has been classified and organized.
EXPERIMENT AND RESEARCH. In the field of science, and in practically every other walk of life, people are gathering, classifying, and organizing new facts daily. This is the source to which one must turn when knowledge is not available through ‘accumulated experience.’ Here, too, the Creative Imagination must often be used.

Knowledge may be acquired from any of the foregoing sources. It may be converted into POWER by organizing it into definite PLANS and by expressing those plans in terms of ACTION.”

Who Should You Ask To Join Your Master Mind?

Smart, positive, successful people that you know and trust. People with BOTH wisdom and knowledge. Wisdom is knowledge and experience applied. Someone you respect. Someone willing to be open and contribute.

A Master Mind has to be content-rich, to the point, value-based dialog – and it’s each participant’s responsibility to bring their gold to each meeting, and share it freely.

Reprinted with permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.


About the Author

Jeffrey GitomerJeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Sales Bible, Customer Satisfaction is Worthless Customer Loyalty is Priceless, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Red Book of Sales Answers, The Little Black Book of Connections, The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude, The Little Green Book of Getting Your Way, The Little Platinum Book of Cha-Ching, The Little Teal Book of Trust, The Little Book of Leadership, and Social BOOM! His website, www.gitomer.com, will lead you to more information about training and seminars, or email him personally at [email protected].

StrategyDriven Business Performance Assessment Program Article

Doing Business in a Big Data World

StrategyDriven Organizational Performance Measures ArticleThe Internet and cloud computing have revolutionized the nature of data capture and storage, tempting many companies to adopt a new ‘Big Data’ philosophy: collect all the data you can; all the time. But this new world of Big Data is proving to be much more demanding and complex than expected, requiring companies not only to adopt different technologies, but also to make significant changes to their business strategy, internal skillsets, and organizational structures.

Big Data is Not Just More Data: That’s because the nature of the data we can now collect has changed. Big Data involves not just the structured data (customer name and details, products purchased, how much was spent and when, etc.) that every company is used to capturing, but also unstructured data (data scraped from the Internet and social media channels that may come in a wide variety of formats, from video to voice). It may seem an obscure data management distinction, but this shift toward collecting unstructured data – which is a large part of what Big Data is all about – is sending shock waves across traditional organizations.

Why?

New technologies: The consistency and predictability of structured data is what gave rise to today’s centralized IT departments – running SQL/Relational Database Management Systems, and ERP and CRM software. Structured data is clean and predictable; easy to collect, organize and analyze – and is usually securely stored on a company’s internal servers.

Unstructured data is very different. It is messy, variable, and difficult to interpret; captured from a wide variety of sources and usually stored on distributed computing nodes through the Cloud. In order to capture, filter, and analyze huge amounts of unstructured data, an organization needs to leverage the new technologies that include massively parallel processing (MPP) and NoSQL/Hadoop-like (non-relational) database and software frameworks.

But getting access to these Big Data technologies means either buying it and building it into your organization’s current IT enterprise structure, or accessing the tools and data storage through Cloud-based offerings (or a combination of both). Whatever method your organization chooses, it will place a significant strain on your – probably already overwhelmed – central IT department, because they will need to construct a complimentary architecture with these two very different platforms.

New Skills: These new technologies also require very different skills, because in order to convert unstructured, randomly collected data into meaningful intelligence, organizations now need data engineers who understand the new NoSQL/Hadoop-like programming languages, and data scientists (often with PhDs in mathematics or statistics) who can set up the algorithms and correctly interpret the data. Employees with these skills are still expensive and hard to find: nearly 80 percent of companies complain that they’re already finding recruitment for these jobs either ‘challenging’ or ‘extremely difficult.’

New Organizational Structures: And because 80% of Big Data projects cross business lines or functions, surveys show that an alarming one third of Big Data projects are already being pursued without the support of the company’s central IT function, by adventurous departments tempted to access Big Data tools unilaterally over the Cloud – often then running that data through the (unsecured) smartphones of their employees. All of this means that CIOs and centralized IT department staff no longer ‘own’ company data the way they did in the past; giving rise to new concerns about data integrity and security in a more distributed and anarchic company structure.

As a result, Big Data is forcing CIOs to relinquish some of their centralized authority in favor of a power-sharing arrangement – not only with departments (such as Sales and Marketing) who want to run their own customer-focused Big Data projects independently, but with important new C-level rivals: the Chief Marketing Technology Officer, or the Chief Data Officer.

A New Company Data Strategy: This means that a Big Data company strategy requires a good deal of equanimity on the part of these various competing and overlapping roles to create policies that allow for departmental independence, but don’t expose the company to data breaches and misuse of customer data. And that’s why adopting a Big Data strategy also requires senior management to be much more involved in IT and data-related matters – providing clear guidance on what data can be used, in what way, and by whom.

In short, there is a lot more to doing business in the Big Data world than simply collecting and analyzing more data. It is a disruptive paradigm shift that most companies have yet to make.


About the Author

Dale NeefDale Neef is a technology advisor, and author of Digital Exhaust: What Everyone Should Know About Big Data, Digitization and Digitally Driven Innovation (FT Press). A veteran of knowledge management, business intelligence, and large-scale technology implementation projects with more than fifty companies worldwide, he has been a technical consultant for the Asian Development Bank, has worked for IBM and Computer Sciences Corporation, and was a fellow at Ernst & Young’s Center for Business Innovation. A frequent contributor to journals, and a regular speaker at technology conferences, he earned his doctorate from Cambridge University, was a research fellow at Harvard, and has written or edited eight books on the economics of knowledge and data management and the use of information technology to mitigate risk. Learn more at www.daleneef.com.

Jeffrey Gitomer

What can you do to get better? Follow the masters.

I began this year in retrospect by reading a 60-year-old book on the masters of selling. The book, titled “America’s Twelve Master Salesmen,” was written and published by B.C. Forbes & Sons in 1953.

The book was based on the fact that each one of these master salespeople had one extremely powerful overriding principle or philosophy upon which his or her success was based.

Not that it was their ‘only,’ but rather were the words they stood for. For example: When you think of Martin Luther King – you think of “I Have A Dream.” He stood for those words. When you think of Patrick Henry – you think of, “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death.” When you think of Richard Nixon – you think “I’m Not a Crook.” (and you’d be thinking wrong)

It is amazing how self-truths become self-evident truths after thirty or forty years of exposure – one way or the other.

Back to the book. Suppose you could adopt (or adapt) all of these master’s single best characteristic into your own set of capabilities. That would be power.

And so, to challenge your 2015 thinking, here are the master’s philosophies from 1953. And yes, I have added my own to the list – even though in 1953 I was a mere child.

  1. James A. Farley (corporate executive) Principle: Idlers do not last long. Starting as a door-to-door salesman, raising to Vice President of Sales for Universal Gypsum, and ultimately a board of director for several large companies including Coca-Cola, Farley believed that doing several things at once was the key to accomplishment. His secret was doing new things at the same time he was following up and building relationships. Often sending 100 letters a day, he was renowned for making and keeping friends.
  2. Max Hess, Jr. (retail store chain owner) Principle: Strive for a specific goals. Hess’s father used to say, “There’s no fun or excitement in just running a store. That way it’s drudgery. The fun and excitement come out of always figuring ways to stay ahead of the other fellow.” He believed in the stimulating power of keeping Hess Brothers forever exciting – exciting not only for the people who shop there but for those who work in the store. Hess made a business plan full of goals. And in a small town environment achieved big city results by working his plan every day, and having a happy army of people (his employees) helping him every step of the way.
  3. Conrad N. Hilton (hotel owner) Principle: Make them want to come back. “It is our theory that when a hotel is in the top-glamour category… you just can’t make it too luxurious. You heap it on. You never stop pondering the question, ‘What aren’t guests getting that they might be getting in the way of elegance and personal attention?’” Hilton knew that one hotel is like any other hotel. The difference is in how you treat the guests. All he asked of his employees was to be nice to people so they will want to come back. They have been coming back for nearly 100 years.
  4. Alex M. Lewyt (manufacturer of the Lewyt vacuum cleaner) Principle: Believe in your product and love it. So will the world! He was an engineer that was convinced he had built the world’s best vacuum cleaner. Advertised it before production was finished. Created a demand in the market with no product (a market vacuum if you will pardon the pun). When the cleaner finally emerged on the market, it was swept up (sorry again). Four million sales in four years. Lewyt said that having the best product is not enough. You must believe it’s the best, and share your passion through every marketing and advertising means.
  5. Mary Margaret McBride (radio broadcaster and columnist. Influencer of millions) Principle: Honesty is the best policy. “If I am convinced in my heart and mind that I’m speaking the truth, I approach the job as I would a sale – with zest and interest. And in my heart I know that I am actually performing a service on behalf of my listener – who is in reality, my customer. Honesty breeds loyal customers.” Her values made her a fortune.

GITOMER NOTE ON HONESTY: When you hear a corporate message like: “To serve you better…” or an employee says, “We’re doing the best we can…,” no matter how you want to defend those words, they’re lies.

The Orison Swett Marden quote: “No substitute has yet been found for honesty,” is a benchmark that everyone will read and agree with — yet very few will follow.

OK. There’s five of them. Pretty cool so far, huh? Next week in part two, more of the master salespeople of their time, including Red Motley and Elmer Letterman, will reveal sales insights that will take you to the next level.

Stay tuned…


About the Author

Jeffrey GitomerJeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Sales Bible, Customer Satisfaction is Worthless Customer Loyalty is Priceless, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Red Book of Sales Answers, The Little Black Book of Connections, The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude, The Little Green Book of Getting Your Way, The Little Platinum Book of Cha-Ching, The Little Teal Book of Trust, The Little Book of Leadership, and Social BOOM! His website, www.gitomer.com, will lead you to more information about training and seminars, or email him personally at [email protected].

5 Things All Entrepreneurs Can Learn About Success from Donald Trump

Love him or hate him, one thing’s for sure: all entrepreneurs can all learn a few things about success and leadership from Donald Trump. While The Donald continues to make headlines for his aggressive campaign to clinch the GOP nomination in the race to the White House, politics aside, it’s easy to see why Trump is a natural born leader and huge business success.

Trump’s thought process, attitude and no holds barred style is a learning lesson for everyone in business. Here are five examples.


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About the Author

Steve SieboldSteve Siebold is author of 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of The World Class and How Rich People Think, and a consultant to Fortune 500 sales and management teams on mental toughness and critical thinking. www.mentaltoughnesssecrets.com