Jan 26

Ethical Dilemmas – When Billing Becomes Theft

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Management , Business Systems , Relationship Selling , Sales and Marketing

Greed and a lack of an internal moral compass produced our current economic meltdown – incredible numbers of people so focused on making astronomical profits that ethics went right out the window. Corporate executives have a fiduciary responsibility to their stockholders and investors that they completely ignored. Now, the American taxpayers are bailing out an industry that had our funds in trust.

The interesting thing is that it’s easy to point fingers at the people in the news to complain about how they committed theft and ignore our own ethical shortcuts. This past week I got some insight into how difficult it is to set our own ethical limit.

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Jan 15

To Find Your Place in the Market, Innovate

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Management , Business Systems , Relationship Selling , Sales and Marketing

Yesterday, when I was looking for a way to explain to my client what I meant about solving a need that customers have, my wife’s frustration with passenger seatbelts dawned on me. Why is it that the driver’s seatbelt gives freedom of movement whereas the passenger seatbelts are restrictive, confining, and uncomfortable? It’s no wonder we need laws to make people wear them. This is an example of finding a need to something that isn’t working well.

Alex Mandossian in one of his podcasts made the point well that the money is made by innovators, not the inventors. Innovators take an existing concept and tweak it so that the public will want it more than the original. I think a good example of this is Starbucks. They certainly did not invent the idea of coffee shops.

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Jan 10

Sales Training from TD Ameritrade’s Commercial

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Systems , Relationship Selling , Sales and Marketing

It’s interesting when you decide to make a point that you expect to annoy some people in sales then you see a commercial that actually reinforces your position. TD Ameritrade’s commercial during Numbers tonight caught my attention.

In contrast to their competitors’ stock brokers, TD Ameritrade’s people “Listen first.” Moreover, they “Talk, not talk down.” I couldn’t write fast enough to get all of the rest, but he made the point about guiding you.

These are the points that I stress with my clients, my readers, and my listeners.

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Jan 04

Do You Have the Sales Passion to Become Outstanding?

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Systems , Relationship Selling

1/04/09 – In the chapter on “The 10,000-Hour Rule,” in his book, Outliers: The Story of Success, Gladwell makes the point that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to achieve world-class performance, whether it’s with the violin, the piano, or programming – provided, of course, that you even have the basic aptitude to excel at that activity. To become a master salesperson, likewise, takes persistent practice. It takes passion to discipline yourself to pursue the knowledge and skills needed to get in 10,000 hours of persistent practice.

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Dec 29

A Year of Gifts

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Systems , Relationship Selling , Sales and Marketing

As we are about to start another calendar year, this is a great time to reflect on the blessings of this past year. For me, it has been a time of fantastic education. I have conducted a self-directed course of study at the University of Hard Knocks as I have upgraded my sales and marketing skills for the 21st Century by diving into Internet marketing and social networking. It’s been fun though often frustrating. It seems every time I think I am about to finish my major projects so as to start on something new, I find another aspect I need to tackle first if I am to lead by example. But the greatest gifts this year seem to involve community: Master Trainer Camp, Internet, writers’ group, and family especially.

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Dec 21

Sales and the Super Bowl: What It Takes to Win

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Management , Business Systems , Relationship Selling

I often ask clients, “What does a team need to win the Super Bowl?” The answer is far more involved than most people think. When I ask the group to tell me what they need, obviously a team that wins the Supper Bowl must have a great quarterback. However, he alone can’t win the game. He needs an incredible offense. Again, though, the best offense isn’t enough if the defense doesn’t keep their opponents from outscoring them. But it takes the people customers seldom see too: accounts receivable, accounts payable, payroll, etc.

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Dec 18

Thrive in a Down Economy: Take Advantage of Competitor’s False Economies

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle , Business Management , Business Systems , Relationship Selling

Few things cause panic in small businesses faster than a down economy. While response is essential to survival, it is actually possible to take advantage of others’ mistakes, like cost cutting that harms their businesses, i.e. false economies. A smart business owner or management team looks at the impact a change is going to make on their customers’ expectations and weigh the risk of loosing them against the lifetime value of those customers.

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