What’s New New? The Economy, and The Rules.
The “New Economy” is over. Some of it worked, some of it bombed, or should I say, dot.bomed. And many businesses – dot or not — are experiencing their first dose of tight times in the past ten years.
Welcome to the “New New Economy.” It’s the one that will follow the New Economy when it finishes deflating it’s bubble.
Have you noticed the change? Want to know what to do?
Here’s part two (of three) of the list I started last week (don’t worry, you’ll be able to get last weeks column, just keep reading). The list was created from the last economic dip. I was selling while others were whining.
I have the formula. BUT, it will require a different (than last year’s) work ethic to make it happen. I’ll tell you what to do, but you gotta do it, baby. Here is part two of the 24.5 sales and personal strategies needed to succeed in these new new times, and a new new question at the end of each strategy to test your reality:
6. Position yourself as a person of value, by being seen and known in the community. If you become known as a person of value, people will seek you out for answers (not brochures). This is a combination of networking, industry and community leadership, and reputation. In this economy (more than ever before) it’s not who you know, it’s who knows you. New new question: What do the top ten people in your industry know about you? Do they call you?
7. Everyone else will be scrambling too, and may not have time to hear a bunch of crap about you. But customers and prospects ALWAYS have time for valuable information, and new ideas to help them build THEIR business. Think about it this way. Do your customers need another one of your brochures or product sheets? Or would they rather have a hot sales lead? Why not make a list of ten things that you can begin to give your customers that are low in cost, like sales leads, but high in value. And begin to make daily or weekly communications to strengthen your present status, and earn future orders. You better have bullet proof customers, because your competition is packing heat. New new question: Have you identified five areas where you can give value? What value do you give now?
8. Build your reputation, because that’s what you will become known by. The actions you have taken over the past few years have molded your present reputation. How is it? The biggest challenge in slow times is: Do everything you can to build an impeccable reputation — P.S. Not everybody will like you… get over it. But your best chance for success over the next few years is have lots of customers who LOVE you. New new question: What do people say about you when you’re not there?
9. Make decisions based on who you want to become – not simply on the basis of your monthly quota. Eventually this mess will be over – where will you be AS the smoke clears? Please note that I did not say “when” the smoke clears. Because when the smoke clears, it’s too late. Your reputation, based on your words, deeds, and actions, will be a legacy that you leave for yourself. If you heed the words of Dr. Paul Homoly who preaches, “Make all decisions based on the person you want to become, rather than on your present situation,” then all of your actions will be directed towards long term relationships rather than short term quotas. New new question: When you make a sale, are you making short term compromise or long term commitments?
10. Spend more time figuring out solutions, than whining about problems. “You can’t be a winner if you’re a whiner, wiener.” That’s a famous quote said in 1993 by me after I observed who came out of the recession of ’91 and who didn’t. This is a time to prepare and be your best, and you can’t do that if you’re whining. The good news is, most people will be whining. This leaves plenty of room for you to succeed. Keep in mind that people will still be buying during this period of time, they just won’t be buying as much. Business (sales) will go to the prepared. New new question: What are you whining about? What solutions make you a winner?
11. Study Attitude, don’t just think you have a good one. Spend 15 minutes a day reading. Best time is in the morning, before you start your day. Read happy, positive thoughts, even if it’s just a re-read of a Dr. Seuss book. (The best one for salespeople is Green Eggs and Ham). New new question: What are you reading every morning? Or are you just watching TV?
12. Invest, don’t spend. (In money, in time, in business, in anything that you do.) Now is the time to guard your assets (and perhaps the abbreviated form of the word). It’s real easy to put your head in the sand and think that everything will return to the way it was. Reality is, dig in but use your assets to build a fortress of positive thought, new information and strategic appearances at networking events to ensure business victory. New new question: What is your time investment in yourself each day?
Rats. I’m out of space again. I have to invest my words wisely. But take heart, the rest of the answers will appear here next week. Meantime, guard your present customers from the vultures (competition), and go sell something.
Last week’s column: Missed it? Want it? Go to www.gitomer.com and enter New New Economy in the GitBit box.
Free GitBit…Want to start taking Actions that will give you a positive attitude FOREVER? I have uncovered two secret actions that you can take use immediately. Go to www.gitomer.com – register if you’re a first time user, and enter the words ATTITUDE FOREVER in the GitBit box.
Jeffrey Gitomer, author of The Sales Bible, and Customer Satisfaction is Worthless, Customer Loyalty is Priceless. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts training programs on selling and customer service. He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org