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15 Reasons Successful Influencers Admit Their Mistakes

To err is human. As we go through life, in any endeavor we are going to make mistakes from time to time. Even experienced professionals make mistakes in their field.

A mistake does not have to be a disaster, though. In fact, a mistake can strengthen your position as a leader and make the group you are a part of more cohesive. There are several reasons why a mistake can ultimately lead to better things in the future.

  • Learn from your mistake. A mistake can be a great teacher. It is best to learn from others’ mistakes, of course, but when you make your own mistake, don’t miss the opportunity to grow from it.

 

  • Earn respect. When admit you were wrong, you will earn the admiration of your colleagues. Admitting a mistake is hard and everyone knows it. When you show you can admit your own, people will notice and think better of you.

 

  • Establish trust. If a person is honest about his or her mistakes, people will trust that they will be honest in other areas as well. This builds team cohesion.

 

  • Lead by example. The best way to lead is with your own actions. If you want those who follow you to admit their mistakes and thereby improve the cohesiveness of your team, you can start by showing them how it is done.

 

  • Face your fears. You can gain a great deal of personal growth by facing your fears. Everyone fears admitting a mistake. This is a chance to display your emotional maturity. There is no courage unless there is fear to overcome.

 

  • Prevent larger problems. Don’t wait for mistakes to pile up and turn into a disaster. When you admit your mistake quickly, it allows for an earlier course correction, which avoids larger mistakes in the future.

 

  • Get rid of your pride. Humility is important in a leader. People will follow a person they love and admire. Humility in the face of error earns the admiration of those you work with, and will help to cleanse you of your own pride. It makes admitting future mistakes that much easier.

 

  • Improve relationships. Relationships sour when one party believes another party owes them an apology that never comes. Admitting a mistake smooths over hurt feelings and resentment.

 

  • Gain defenders. Many people will flock to your defense when you admit your mistake. They will be moved by your humility and good judgment.

 

Sometimes, a mistake is minor and hardly needs more than a simple acknowledgement. Other times, a mistake is more damaging, or even involves a lack of good judgment. In many cases, you may owe someone or a group of people an apology for what you did or failed to do. No matter how much you may have learned from making a mistake, without a proper apology many people may not be ready to move on.

There is an appropriate way to apologize when the time comes. A poorly fashioned apology can sometimes be worse than the mistake, and worse than not apologizing at all. There are a number of factors that go into a true apology, one that mends the damage that has been done and allows for team and personal growth.

 

  • Express remorse. Use the words, “I’m sorry.” It is important to use the first person. Don’t say an action was regrettable, and don’t use the passive voice. Mistakes were not made, YOU made a mistake. Be careful not to word it in a way that makes it seem like you are shifting blame.

 

  • Explain what you are sorry for. You don’t want people to think you are not fully sorry for the entirety of the act, or that you are only sorry that your error was discovered. An apology comes with a reason. Make sure the people to whom you apologize are on the same page about what exactly you are sorry for.

 

  • Take full responsibility. Apologize for what you said or did, or failed to say or do, and leave it there. When you try to explain what you did, it starts to sound like you are making excuses. It is best to simply admit you were wrong and fully own up to it.

 

  • Don’t give a false apology. If you aren’t sorry, you aren’t ready to apologize yet. A false apology is never a convincing one. Instead, think back on the mistake and try to understand why and how this has affected others. When you are ready to make the apology, make it sincere.

 

  • Don’t spread the blame around. Even if you were not the only one to blame for the mistake, don’t try to highlight anyone else’s role. Apologize for your part and leave it at that. If you start talking about the fault in others, it sounds like you are trying to duck the blame you have earned.

 

  • Explain your new understanding. If you ever explain why you did something, be sure to follow it with how you realize that it was wrong now. Never let your apology get covered up with excuses. When you explain how you see things differently, you can follow with how you plan to do better in the future.

 

If you are a team leader, you may have to apologize for someone who works for you, even if you had nothing to do with the mistake and were not there. As a leader, you are ultimately responsible for your employees. If you apologize for an employee, apply the same rules as if you were apologizing for your own mistake. The apology needs to be sincere and you need to take responsibility.

A mistake, even a major one, can lead to growth and improvement.  It can lead to your improvement as a person, a team member and a leader, it can improve relations and even performance in your group, and it can act as an important demonstration of what not to do and how not to do it.

When you make a mistake, own it. If an apology is warranted, make an honest one and do it the right way. It says a lot about you as a person, and that will only make you a better, more respected leader in the future.

Ten Traits of an Ideal Annual Sales Event Speaker

The annual sales event is important for your sales team – maybe even the most important part of the year. It’s an opportunity to accomplish several different things, from boosting morale to developing your team as professionals and even making an operational forecast for the coming year. It’s a social event, as well as an educational opportunity.

The keynote speaker at your annual sales event will be the foundation for a successful event for your organization. The ideal speaker can accomplish everything you set out to do and leave you feeling fulfilled and your sales team eager for success in the coming year. Given this, it is important to put time and consideration into choosing the right speaker. First, consider what is important to accomplish at the event, given your professional goals as well as your sales team’s expectations.

 

  • Focus on the team. There are specific points you will want to cover with your team. For instance, you may want to talk about quotas for the coming year, or forecasts for the industry in general and your team specifically. You may want to give them information on sales growth. It is also a good idea to solicit input from your team. What topics do they want to cover? What information do they feel they need to know or learn better?

 

  • This is an excellent chance to provide ongoing education to your sales team. Are there areas where they might need improvement? Perhaps you just want to give them a good review of policies and practices. Everyone needs refreshers from time to time, and the annual sales event is the perfect time to do it while adding an element of fun and camaraderie to the event.

 

  • Sales is about motivation and drive. Your sales team needs to look forward to their work and be excited about their prospects. A good charge of inspiration at the annual sales event can mean a lot for the coming year. This is a good opportunity to think big, to talk about broad topics like leadership or perseverance. Often, a person outside your organization is the ideal candidate to do this.

 

  • Recognize excellence. Nothing generates excitement like the pride a salesperson takes from getting their due recognition. Your team has worked hard over the course of the year, and now is the time to make sure they know you value their contributions. You can hand out awards, for instance, for achievements. Try to include everyone in some way, and don’t leave the planning for this until the last moment.

 

With these goals in mind, you can begin your search for the ideal keynote speaker for your annual sales event. There are certain traits that indicate the right person, the one who can develop your professionals and motivate them. The one who can uplift them with deserved recognition and prepare them for the coming year. These are ten key traits to look for when choosing the keynote speaker for an annual sales conference.

 

1. They have a strong social media presence. Modern conference speakers engage with a following on social media. The number of followers can be faked, but true audience engagement cannot. Look for a speaker who knows the importance of social media engagement.

 

2. They don’t work for free. They say you get what you pay for, and this usually proves to be true. A gifted speaker is in demand and unless it is for a cause, does not usually choose to donate his or her time for free. A lot of work goes into making a good keynote speech for any type of conference, and a good speaker is going to charge a fee for that.

 

3. They are active on Slideshare. Professional quality slides are a given with an ideal speaker. When a speaker has put in the effort to make slides of quality, they will cultivate a following on Slideshare. Look for engagement there as a sign of a worthwhile speaker.

 

4. They know audio and video. A good speaker will ask you questions about your setup. They will want to know the projector display ratio and whether there is WI-FI available. They will ask about mobile apps for the event. A good speaker is knowledgeable and their questions will demonstrate this to you.

 

5. Their slides are professional quality. The slides are a key component of the speech, and will aid in maintaining audience engagement. If a speaker has poor slides, the audience will lose trust.

 

6. They solicit the audience’s opinion. Every event should poll the audience while it is going on. A good speaker will be familiar with the practice and use it him or herself.

 

7. They know your audience. A good speaker will get to know your audience before the event. This way, he or she can address specific points important to your team and even participate in the recognition portion of the event. The more the speaker tailors the speech to the audience, the more engaged the audience will be.

 

8. They get audience members to interact with each other. When a speaker has electrified the audience, they will engage with each other, not just sit there and passively listen to the speaker.

 

9. They engage with the mobile app of the event. Every event should have a mobile app, and a sign of a good speaker is that he or she engages with that app to make the most of the event.

 

10. Their content is meaningful. A modern speaker knows how to use social media like Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube videos to make their content relevant and accessible before, during and after the show.

 

The right keynote speaker at your annual sales conference can give your sales team a sense of satisfaction in what they have accomplished, give them some professional development and leave them eager for the coming year’s challenges. The event should be a reward and an inspiration. Knowing what to look for in potential keynote speaker candidates is vitally important to choosing the right speaker for your event. Keep these qualities in mind when the time comes to find the right speaker for your annual sales event.

What Is Change Leadership?

Companies sometimes need a drastic change in order to fix a long standing problem or merely to adapt with the rest of the world. That shift only occurs when a single vision motivates the employees as a team and becomes strong enough to enact that change. Change leadership is important in renovating overarching aspects of a company by using an empowered vision of the potential of such radical change. To become a change leader, you must understand what it means before taking the first steps.

 

Definition of Change Leadership

Change leadership is a type of leadership that focuses on large-scale changes within an organization. Real change leaders (RCLs) are more concerned about a large, transformative vision for the business and how the employees become empowered enough to contribute to the creation of that vision. One risk of change leadership, however, is it has the potential to get out of control and not account for the smaller details in that line of work. In addition, a company may not act upon every proposed change to the established structure.

 

Distinction From Change Management

Change management is often associated with change leadership. Many consider the two synonyms. However, these two concepts approach the upcoming change at a company with different methods. Change management refers to “a basic set of tools or structures intended to keep any change effort under control.” Change management essentially introduces a company shift to a work environment that is usually resistant to the concept of change. Management keeps the distractions and effects of change under control at a small, gradual pace, rather than the disruptive approach change leadership takes.

 

The Role of People Management in Change Leadership

For RCLs to continue their ambitious vision for their business, first they need to embrace people management. People management focuses on having each employee reach their full potential by managing them. People managers lead their employees into training and developing their skills, meeting new goals, defending them by understanding employee law, and encouraging them to improve. Some of the practices in people management include:

  • Training and development. Managers ensure that employees receive enough orientation to start their job and that they receive evaluation and feedback to encourage them to grow and take on more responsibility.
  • Decision making. A manager must make the final decision when it comes to employee recognition or discipline with fair, objective decisions.
  • Managers must work as mediators for employee grievances, help the employees feel confident about their job, and carry out evaluations.
  • Overseeing teamwork. Despite delegating teamwork to employees, managers must make sure the team is performing its duties within budget and deadlines.
  • Role modeling. A manager sets a good example for the other employees by behaving like a professional and treating other employees with respect and dignity.
  • Managers oversee the progress of employees, and if necessary, set up programs and identify opportunities for improvement to ensure employee growth within the company.

By embracing something as structured as people management, RCLs can motivate employees to align to the greater vision for the organization.

 

Actions of RCLs

Advocates for change leadership are very different from regular management roles. While managers strive to keep everything controlled and running, RCLs are all about shaking the business up. RCLs have skills that make them stand out from other types of leadership.

  • Linchpin linkages. Forging connections in the marketplace, RCLs engage with the customers and find out what the competition is doing. Then, the leaders use the information to energize their work teams into improving their performance.
  • 360-degree impact. Often in middle management positions, RCLs inspire their vision first among the employees they are directly responsible for. Later, the leaders also try to influence the executives and people above them to bring changes, with varying degrees of success.
  • An expandable toolkit. RCLs have specific problem-solving skills or tools. However, they are always looking for new approaches and techniques, and do not get complacent in the techniques they already have. These leaders adapt to new situations.
  • Switch-hitting leadership capacity. In change leadership, there is no single type of leadership approach. RCLs have different approaches to leading depending on each of the employees. In the case their methods cannot adapt to the situation, RCLs delegate others to help lead the current vision for the team to completion.

 

Characteristics of RCLs

While individual change leaders may have their own unique approaches at leadership and driving the company to meet a unified vision, they all share a few characteristics:

  • Excited and committed to a vision that will improve the future of the organization
  • Courage to face and combat norms, power bases, and failures to fulfill their goal
  • Motivated and make sure to spread that motivation to others
  • Take the initiative in challenging the status quo and thinking outside the box to solve problems
  • Care for the way the company treats other employees, particularly the ones on their team and under their watch.
  • Sense of humor, even in the worst of times, to motivate everyone around them to keep focused on the larger vision for the company

 

Shortage of Change Leaders

Change leadership rarely comes from the top because the people involved have the least incentive to drive a large, overwhelming change that extends all the way to the smallest employees. Most RCLs originate from middle management positions. However, there is a shortage of RCLs since most management positions are traditional and more akin to change managers. Experts argue that the shortage can end by both bringing in outside talent specialized in real change and instructing managers on change leadership methods.

 

Boost Your Change Leadership Skills

Becoming a strong, efficient change leader requires patience and practice. Inspiring employees to follow your vision is a skill that develops over time. If you want to learn more about how to influence others, then consider investing in some lessons. SNI’s influence training course is based on Aristotle’s philosophy on the three elements of influence (ethos, pathos, and logos) to build credibility, engage emotion, demonstrate logic, and engage action. Call us today to join our program and maximize your leadership success.

Why You Should Invest in Communication Training

Arguably one of the most important skills to have in any setting is communication. The business world is no exception. If you have a team with fantastic communication, your chances of success are significantly higher. Communication is beneficial not only in interpersonal matters within the company, but also with customer and client interactions. Communication training is becoming widely accepted as a great way to teach people how to be effective communicators in the workplace for many reasons.

 

Better Relationships With Customers and Clients

The quality of customer service can be the factor that makes or breaks a company. If customers and clients trust and like you, they are more likely to become loyal to your business and continue coming back. Communication coaching will ensure you can establish a great rapport with customers.

Customers want to feel understood and appreciated by a company. If they think you only care about them because of their wallets, they will be more hesitant to give you their business. Most businesses involve a certain amount of customer interactions, and many depend on these interactions for success. Poor communication skills will inevitably lead to poor customer interactions. Investing in communication classes for yourself or for your team could make a significant difference in your company’s success.

 

Improved Presentations and Speeches

Many jobs in the business world involve giving presentations and speeches. Whether you are trying to convince a customer to invest, trying to inspire others in the industry, or selling company leadership on an idea, being able to speak to a group precisely and effectively is an invaluable skill.

People are much more likely to listen and trust someone who is speaking confidently. Nervous speakers can come off as hesitant or unsure – a quality that will make most people pass on a deal. You want to be clear and assertive in your presentations and speeches. Communication training can help teach you how to be a great speaker and presenter.

 

Improved Clarity

No matter what your role is in a company, you need to be clear about what you want. Companies with employees who don’t understand what the company wants of them are confused and they are bound to face issues. Every member of your company needs to be on the same page about company goals and projects. Like improved presentations and speeches, communication coaching and classes will help you be clearer when explaining things to peers or leadership.

 

Easier to Resolve Interpersonal Problems

Interpersonal problems can tear a company apart. Employees who are upset with leadership or a co-worker are significantly less likely to produce high-quality work. They will feel less motivated to give everything their best effort.

Poor communication is often the cause of problems within a company. People either do not feel comfortable confronting and discussing their issues or do not feel welcome addressing them. Employee feuds do not resolve without both parties feeling capable of clearly and calmly expressing their frustrations. Often, the solution to disagreements lies in understanding the other person’s position. Communication training can give you a greater sense of empathy and improve your ability to talk about why you are unhappy and understand the other point of view at the same time.

 

Improved Comfort and Confidence During Tough Times

It is inevitable that your company is going to face difficult times, if it has not already. In hard times, employees become stressed and nervous and may even leave. Retaining workers during tough times is vital if you want your company to survive. If people in leadership roles do not address the fears or try to cover the issue, employees may experience even more anxiety.

Being empathetic and transparent is a vital management skill, especially during tough times. Not only will it show that you respect your employees, but they will trust you more and have more confidence in the future of the company. You need to know how to communicate with your employees during difficult times.

 

Improved Written Communication

In the business world, people are constantly communicating through the written word. Whether it is an email, a text message, or a social media post, it is important to know some basic rules about how to communicate through business writing. If you are too aggressive, impersonal, or short with your message, people are less likely to respond positively, losing you important potential customers.

Business writing also needs to be clear. If you send an email outlining a project that is unclear or vague, it may confuse people and the project may become a mess. Communication training can help people understand how to effectively portray a point over email, social media, or through other written messages.

At Shapiro Negotiations, we have experts who can offer you and your employees communication training and coaching that can improve all aspects of your company and ensure you can continue thriving in the business world.

 

 

Leading by Influence: Are You Ready?

With the right amount of influence, an individual can compel others to join a cause, dedicate themselves to a goal, and successfully fulfill a unified vision. Contrary to popular belief, an authentic leader does not have to maintain a position of power. Whether you are a manager or employee, you have the capacity to become a leader if you put effort into it.

A highly influential person is generally one who uses leadership traits and skills such as effective communication, dependability, and the strength of influence to lead others while on the job. In many cases, employees will follow a leader’s example with no regard to what position they hold. Leading by influence can have an exceptional effect on your business’s prosperity. If you are ready to embrace leading by the power of influence, here are some ways you can become a model for leadership in the workplace regardless of your title.

 

Contribute

If you are a director or manager of a region in a business, take the time to do some of the duties your employees would normally do. Since people don’t like it when the person giving them orders hasn’t demonstrated his or her ability to contribute, a director who is eager to be hands-on will help encourage employees to be proactive as well.

 

Remain Positive

Even though no one can be positive 100% of the time, it is important to try to remain upbeat no matter what the circumstances. Positivity can be contentious, and employees are far more likely to respond positively to someone who is kind and demonstrates an ability to maintain a good attitude. Express gratitude toward others by making them feel good about their achievements and rewarding them for making progress toward their goals.

 

Have an Open-Door Policy

If your employees or associates are uneasy when approaching you, they will have less respect for you as their leader. Make sure your associates know you are accessible at any times and are willing to address any concerns they have. Being approachable helps cultivate a strong sense of mutual respect and understanding between you and your employees.

 

Be Consistent

If you tell your employees something and don’t follow through or do the exact opposite, you will damage your integrity. Losing credibility with your employees is extremely hard to come back from, so once you commit to do something, always honor it.

 

Communicate

As a force of inspiration, effective communication  helps guide others in pursuit of achievement, so it is essential to be an excellent communicator in order to lead by influence. Enhancing communication skills will enable you to use your inspirational power to motivate others so keep the following notions in mind when expressing ideas to employees and associates:

  • Understand what you want to achieve.
  • Consider the perspective of your listeners.
  • Pay close attention to how they respond.

 

Use Rewards

Being in a position of power allows leaders to use rewards to motivate others, but outstanding leaders can recreate the notion of coercive power by transforming it into influence no matter what their position is. Handing out rewards, including bonuses and promotions, in accordance with a clearly expressed batch of criteria helps promote productive activity. Maintaining a rewards system also includes adhering to rules and being fair always, which will increase your credibility and establish a foundation of trust between you and your employees.

 

Be an Example

The referent influences you have, the more others will want to align themselves with your cause.

You can increase your referent influence by being ethical, reliable, and embodying the qualities of professionalism. Illuminate the values of honesty, fairness, respect, and company pride to establish a strong model for others to look up to.

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The 10 Most Famous Motivational Speakers

A truly outstanding motivational speaker never fails to inspire his or her audience members with gravitating and compelling speeches. While there are many good motivational speakers in the world, there are only a few who truly stand out from the crowd. These few captivating speakers can seize the attention of crowds to help get their messages across. Here is a list of the top 10 most famous motivational speakers who have demonstrated their capacities to make an impact on millions of lives throughout the world. Each of these speakers has the uncanny ability to get his or her message across in a way that is impactful

 

1. Eric Thomas

Eric Thomas not only dropped out of high school, he was homeless as well. Nowadays, he is one of the most passionate motivational speakers known. Using his personal experiences to provide guidance to others, widely regarded as blunt advice, but highly credible and truthful. He refrains from delivering sugar-coated speeches and highlights the fact that each person has a different definition of success. But no matter what it may be, he tells audiences that success can take many years to achieve. He stresses the importance of being willing to sacrifice and sustaining true dedication to achieve success in the future.

 

2. Tony Robbins

At 6 feet 7 inches tall, Tony Robbins has a demanding stage presence, which allows him to grasp the attention of his audience with ease. As an individual who genuinely enjoys helping others achieve their goals and make the most out of their lives, he speaks to listeners with vigor and passion. While many inspirational speakers lack depth, Tony understands the psychology of achievement. He tells audiences that people who create spectacular results take specific steps to establish themselves. He starts his speeches with the fundamentals, including what you want to do with your life and why this goal is important to you. He proceeds to go more in-depth about strategies and ideas to assist you in persevering on behalf of your dreams.

 

3. Nick Vujicic

Nick Vujicic was born without any arms or legs, but he never let his condition hinder his ability to seek fulfillment and achieve success in his life. With gratitude and compassion for others, he is an incredibly happy man who speaks about the significance of remaining strong and never giving up on yourself. He believes nothing is truly impossible, and the word “quitting” is not a part of his vocabulary. He emphasizes the importance of not concentrating on what you can’t do in life. Rather, he advises people to concentrate on what you can control and what you can do to move forward.

 

4. Naseer Khan

As one of the most highly regarded motivational speakers in India, Naseer Khan believes that to achieve, you must believe in yourself. Working as a door-to-door salesperson until he was 18, Naseer lived a humble life as one of nine children in his family. Nowadays, Naseer focuses on inspiring others to exceed objectives through corporate training techniques including employee motivation, confidence building, power selling, and many more.

 

5. Zig Ziglar

Zig Ziglar is an author and inspirational speaker whose words have the influential power necessary to transcend time. He has been traveling the world since the 1970s, speaking out for positive progression to foster enthusiasm for change. He specializes in personal development training and coaches many individuals in topics including sales, presentation skills, and more.

 

6. Jim Rohn

Known for his moving speeches that stimulate the mind and inspire the soul, John Robin has helped thousands accomplish their goals. His legacy continues to impact the lives of many individuals worldwide in their endeavors to establish meaningful goals and pursue personal development.

 

7. Iyanla Vanzant

Once a welfare mother, Iyanla Vanzant is now an Emmy award-winning, New York Times best-selling author, and one of America’s most adored motivational speakers. With a straightforward approach, Iyanla uses her energy, passion, wit, and sense of humor to deliver a message focused on using love, acceptance, and perseverance to live your ideal life.

 

8. Vikas Jain

Vikas Jain is an author and worldwide motivational speaker known for his exceptional keynote speeches. Specializing in developing motivational sales training, he has created unique employee training programs on a variety of topics including leadership, team building, youth motivation, entrepreneurship, and more.

 

9. Robin Sharma

Robin Sharma is one of the most world-renowned motivational speakers on business leadership. As a best-selling author of several books, he travels the world to give moving keynote speeches at companies and organizations committed to developing dedicated leaders.

 

10. John Assaraf

John Assaraf has spent the last 25 years on a quest to achieve his goal of helping others understand their capacity to utilize their innate talents to live their best lives. As a student of human consciousness and behavior, he holds the belief that everyone can use cognitive tools to retrain the brain to concentrate on specific motivating principles.

Common Elements of a Premier Leadership Course

Besides a generous investment return, properly designed and implemented leadership courses have a plethora of advantages for a business, including:

  • Improved productivity levels
  • Comprehensive understanding of how to encourage team prosperity
  • Increased levels of employee activity and team engagement when directors understand how to manage people efficiently
  • Higher levels of positivity among employees
  • The creation of a work environment centered around the process of learning through collaboration
  • More informed decisions in accordance with techniques and problem solving rather than simply responding to issues without a clear plan
  • Demonstrated leaders who can serve as models for all employees and budding managers to follow

While all companies have different needs and must orchestrate a leadership program that can properly meet the specific requirements of their organization’s culture, there are several fundamental components of the best leadership courses. Here are a few aspects you should look for to ensure you select a high-quality leadership program to facilitate a prosperous environment for your company.

 

Small, Centralized, and Supportive Leadership Groups

When a business opts to begin a leadership training course, it is always best to start small. Start the process with a small group of individuals who are in leadership roles at the company already. As time goes on, this initial group will serve as the base of the program. Maintaining small groups allows each person to receive the consideration needed to enhance skills in sales. Small groups are also more effective at promoting a culture of teamwork and support among associates.

 

Employ Several Means of Learning New Leadership Ideas

Each employee in a leadership training course is an individual, which means there will be a range of ways each person absorbs new concepts and communicates within the group. The best courses involve an established multi-media education program that incorporates all styles of learning. From virtual communication and documented written materials to in-person meetings, providing several modes of learning new ideas will offer employees increased flexibility and variety throughout the process, which will also help encourage active engagement and participation.

 

Defined Objectives and Concrete Milestones

All individuals enrolled in the leadership program should work with a mentor one on one to organize a list of short- and long-term objectives. There must also be a viable way of measuring achievement as the individual continuously strives to tackle each goal. This will keep all participants on track and engaged in the leadership program throughout its duration. Defining goals and documenting achievements will also help individuals break down the new concepts they are learning, which will help them retain novel ideas and incorporate learned skills in the aftermath of the program.

 

Retention Courses and Programs

When a business invests time and money revamping its leaders’ skills, there will be an immediate improvement in job performance. However, to retain these skills over time, employees will need to receive direction. An exceptional leadership improvement training course will involve taking the proper measures to retain valuable leaders. Once employees have completed the leadership program, they must continue to get support and engage with their small groups on a regular basis.

Shapiro Negotiations offers some of the best leadership training programs in sales, negotiation, and influence. Each program is tailor-made to provide participants with innovative leadership skills specific to their area of expertise. Give us a call to learn more about our company and the leadership insights you can gain through any of our training programs.

3 of the Best Negotiators in History

So much of our global society is dependent on negotiations. It may seem hyperbolic, but it’s true: negotiation stops wars and signs treaties. Negotiations start humanitarian initiatives, build corporations, and drive economic growth in countries all over the world. While some go through life oblivious to the negotiations going on around us, these interactions are capable of changing the course of history. Here are three master negotiators who changed the fate of the world:

 

  1. Nelson Mandela

Harvard Law School recently named Nelson Mandela as one of the best negotiators in history. He was well known for his patience, strategic thinking, practicality, and unwillingness to quit. He was able to make concessions, but refused to back down from what he thought was most important. In negotiating with a government that prized violence and resistance, Mandela brought a quiet resolve. This led to an uncanny ability to persuade his adversaries, one that was unmatched in the 20th century.

 

 

  1. Theodore Roosevelt

Teddy Roosevelt is well known for many things; his “Citizen in a Republic Speech” is one of the most famous in American history. He also famously delivered a 90-minute speech soon after he was shot by an innkeeper in 1912. “It takes more than that to kill a bull-moose,” he reassured his audience, referring to the name of his Progressive independent party.

Roosevelt was just that – as stubborn as a bull-moose, unwilling to budge on the issues that were important to him. He also was famed for his soft side – in fact, his act of mercy toward a wounded black bear on a hunting trip made him the subject of jokes in the press and led to the creation of the “Teddy Bear.”

 

 

  1. Henry Kissinger

Members of the Nixon administration will go down in history for many things, but few of them are positive. Henry Kissinger, however, is the notable exception. In his capacity of Secretary of State and National Security Advisor to both the Nixon Administration and Ford Administration, Kissinger weathered adversity and came out on top. From establishing diplomatic relations with China to diffusing geopolitical tensions with the Soviet Union, his actions ushered in peace in a time of American discord.

The world’s best negotiators altered the course of global history, whether through toppling evil governments or preventing potential war. Though we may not think about it often, these three expert negotiators prevented bloodshed and ushered in eras of peace, both in America and around the world.

 

18 Proven Sales Tactics That Work in Any Industry

Developing a strong sales program is the most critical aspect of any business. Without effective sales strategies, companies will not be able to compete and grow. Sales professionals must learn how to implement proven sales tactics that work. These sorts of sales tactics do more than just help them to close individual sales; they help to generate additional prospects for future sales.

As a sales team manager, one of your responsibilities is to provide your team with effective sales training and sales strategies that will increase your company’s profits. Effective sales processes are not just about working hard and putting in long hours. In fact, many sales teams work long and hard without experiencing results.

Effective sales strategies involve employing the best strategies in the right situations. Here are 18 sales tactics that can work for sales teams in every industry.

  1. Be persistent with leads and develop the habit of following up with each customer.

    According to the latest sales research, 80 percent of sales transactions require 5 interactions after the first contact with a customer. Many salespeople are primarily concerned with immediate sales. If they do not get the sale at the first meeting, they silently give up and continue their hunt for the next immediate sale. However, savvy sales professionals understand that they must nurture viable leads until an action is taken. These ‘rock star’ sales professionals send emails, direct mail, make phone calls or send brochures to customers at designated intervals. By taking this action, your customers will think of you when it is time to make their next purchases.

  2. Solve your customers’ problems.

    Successful businesses thrive in competitive industries because they provide solutions to meet their customers’ needs. There are many sales professionals who do not fully understand their roles in the transaction. Consider this fact. As many as 70 percent of your leads are reaching out to you to solve their problems. When customers contact your sales team, your sales professionals must be able to demonstrate to them how they can quickly and easily solve their problems.

  3. Develop the ability to actively listen to customers.

    Customers have access to pages of information on the internet. In many instances, they may be as knowledgeable as your sales team. When sales professionals interact with knowledgeable customers, they might be tempted to talk constantly to show them that they are qualified. It is important to remind your salespeople that they should never get into a knowledge power struggle with customers. Sales professionals should always listen more than they talk. Simply listening to customers’ answers can be one of the most effective sales tactics in your team’s arsenal. They should ask questions that probe into their clients’ thought processes and carefully consider the responses. The goal is to make customers feel as if they are respected throughout the sales process.

  4. Use polite terms when you discuss the competition.

    Your sales team should always strive to present themselves in a positive light and use professional language. There is nothing that screams unprofessional like using derogatory terms to discuss other people or companies. Although customers may participate in the negative conversation, bad mouthing any person or company is never a good sales tactic. If a competitor does not have a good reputation, the members of your sales team should remain neutral.

  5. Earn your referrals before you ask for them.

    Sales professionals know that referrals are the proverbial ‘holy grail’ of marketing. In fact, 91 percent of customers will provide a referral contact to a salesperson that they like. Before you think about asking your customers for referrals, you should focus on providing them with a quality customer service experience. During the transaction, your goal is to develop positive relationships with your customers. After you have determined that they are happy with your services, it is a good idea to pursue the referrals. When it comes to soliciting referrals, timing is important.

  6. Ask for referrals from your customers.

    You might not believe it, but only 11 percent of sales professionals ask clients for referrals. According to this data, the majority of salespeople are leaving money on the table. Most customers are generous, and they would happily share your good customer service with friends, family members and colleagues, but you have to ask. If your sales team waits for their customers to initiate a conversation about referrals, it might never happen. Teach your sales team how to integrate referral conversations into the sales process at the appropriate time.

  7. Adhere to strict deadlines with your customers.

    Sales professionals must create a sense of urgency with customers, or the deals will take much longer than necessary. Changing deadlines according to the whims of each customer makes sales professionals lose credibility. The old adage, where there is a will there is a way, applies here. If customers want to meet the obligations of a transaction by the deadline, they will definitely find a way to make it happen.

  8. Develop relationships with your customers.

    Without customer relationships, it can seem as if you are always in the vicious cycle of trying to ‘drum up’ new business. Your past customers can be an excellent source of new transactions for years to come. When your initial transaction is completed, you do not have to end the relationship at that point. Find creative ways to keep in contact with your customers even after you close the deal.

  9. Identify your customers’ needs and meet them.

    Sales professionals should never lose sight that the only purpose of the sales transaction is to help customers. Since transactions are closely associated with money, it is easy to lose sight of this fact. Create a list of questions that you can use to pinpoint exactly what the customer needs from the transaction. These questions will enable you to save time with customers and get to the heart of the matter. Once customers believe that you understand their predicament, they will work with you to meet their needs.

  10. Be able to distinguish a lead from a customer and act accordingly.

    Brace yourself for this disheartening fact. According to a report by Gleanster Research, only 25 percent of all leads are legitimate and ready to complete a transaction. Leads are potential transactions, and you cannot bank your future on potential. You should categorize your leads and create campaigns to interact with each type. For example, warm leads should have a different marketing strategy than cold calls. Time is a limited resource. It is best to use it wisely.

  11. Solicit targeted leads.

    A difficult lesson for many sales professionals to learn is that every person with a pulse will not be a customer. Since this is the case, sales professionals must create a strategic plan to attract customers that fit their target markets. One way to do this is to make good use of technology to find leads that could use your services. For example, credit professionals who are targeting people who are recovering from bankruptcy can use the public record to find people who fit this profile. Once you have found your potential customers, create a customized sales pitch that will appeal to each demographic.

  12. Learn to uncover each customer’s pain points.

    Television advertisements are known for pushing the viewer’s hot buttons in order to get them to take action. Fear of loss is the most common pain points that advertisers address. The primary mission of every sale professional, as emphasized in our negotiation training courses, is to find a customer’s pain points and use them to their advantage. Ron Shapiro said it best when he stated, “In order to get what you want, help them get what they want.” Sales professionals can start the search for pain points by asking closed-ended questions that only require a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. As the customer begins to feel comfortable, the salesperson should ask open-ended questions that will prompt customers to reveal additional information. Once the vital information is discovered, salespeople can use it to help their customers take action.

  13. Master the art of storytelling.

    When sales professionals meet with customers, they are usually armed with all sorts of facts and data. Although data may seem important, studies suggest that only 5 percent of people remember statistics after a presentation. However, an impressive 63 percent of people remember stories after a presentation. Sales professionals need to arm themselves with stories about relevant experiences of people who have received favorable results after using their products and services.

  14. Stand by your product or service and offer some type of guarantee.

    If your customers are willing to part with their cash, your company should at least be willing to offer a guarantee on the product or service. The guarantee can be a refund or replacement. If you are afraid of most of your customers taking you up on a money back guarantee policy, you should not be. Less than 10 percent of customers return items each year. A product or service guarantee provides your customers with peace of mind that lets them know that they are protected in the event that something goes awry.

  15. Find prospects who want the things you have to sell.

    The best way to navigate through water is to go with the current instead of swimming against it. In sales, going with the current means that if you are selling chicken, your leads are people who like chicken. If your prospects are vegan, then it will be nearly impossible to sell your chicken products to them. If you want to be certain that your clients need the items you are selling, you should pre-qualify them before you actively market to them.

  16. Develop compelling goals and an actionable plan.

    Successful people know where they want to go, and they develop an action plan to help them propel toward their destination. Goal-setting and planning are critical to any sales team’s success. According to a study conducted by Inc. Magazine, sales teams that set goals realized a 28 percent increase in sales. Teaching goal-setting strategies should be a mandatory part of every organization’s corporate sales training manual.

  17. Show customers proof that your product or service actually works.

    When you look at infomercials for weight loss products, they often show ‘before and after’ pictures of previous users of the products. They understand that new customers are motivated by social proof. Sales professionals should keep customer testimonials in a binder or in their laptops to share with customers. When customers are able to view the visible proof, they will be more likely to invest in your product or service.

  18. Maintain a positive mindset.

    This may seem like a no-brainer, but you might be surprised by the number of sales professionals who develop a jaded outlook because of sales slumps. Sales professionals must make every effort to remain positive in good and tough times. Developing a positive attitude has many benefits. Customers can tell when you are not in a good mood, and it will affect the transaction. A positive outlook helps sales professionals look for solutions to pending problems. When your sales professionals are positive, they will be able to handle stressful situations.

The above list isn’t just a collection of interesting tips—these are proven sales strategies that work. In this competitive business environment, sales professionals need to learn all the tricks of the trade in order to close a deal. By using these sales tactics that work, your sales team can learn to thrive in any economic climate.

To learn more about our sales, negotiation, or influence training for your organization please click here.

5 Recommendations For an Effective Leadership Training Program

People throw the phrase “natural-born leader” around all the time these days. While some people may seem to have an innate talent for leadership, most of the time, leadership is learned through hard work and dedication.

Often, company leaders are employees who have risen up the ranks, getting promoted for great job performance. While good work should, of course, be rewarded, this can lead to managers and executives who are excellent engineers or salesmen, but who have very little ability as a leader. To counteract this problem, many organizations choose to implement extensive leadership training programs.

But what is it that makes an effective leadership training program? While our training is often a great fit for leaders and included within a leadership curriculum, we do not offer leadership training. As a result, here are a few objective thoughts on what separates the best leadership training from the rest:

1. Tailor the course to fit the situation.

When it comes to executive education, there is no such thing as “one size fits all.” Even  the core concepts that are usually covered are made relevant in a different way based on the audience. Simply put, training must be customized to suit your specific participants’ and organization’s needs. What specific goals does your organization have? What problems will you face that other organizations may not have to worry about? Putting in the work to understand your organization’s needs as you build your management training programs is a worthwhile exercise in itself and certainly makes the training more effective.

2. Prioritize listening over talking.

Whether you’re heading up a single project, leading a small team, or directing an entire company, the ability to listen will be one of the greatest skills you can develop. Great leaders are able to engage with their team members on a deeper level by listening to what they’re saying and acting accordingly. When those leaders are able to truly listen, they show their team members that the solution is about more than just looking good—it’s about real collaboration and finding a lasting solution. In our negotiation training courses, we emphasize listening to the other party to determine their interests, a skill that absolutely extends extends to leadership training. By listening to your team more than talking, you can gather additional insights, both into the situations at hand and into your team members themselves. Leading a team effectively involves having all the information, and paying careful attention to what your team is saying is one of the best ways to make that happen.

3. Emphasize accountability.

In terms of leadership training programs, accountability means two things. First, it means that you should hold your employees accountable for participating in the leadership training course. Your course should encourage your employees to constantly work on improving themselves. But accountability goes beyond just showing up at the class. Accountability also means that, while leaders delegate tasks, the responsibility is never delegated. A good leader holds himself or herself responsible for the results their team brings in, regardless of the outcome.

4. Don’t let it get bogged down with fluff.

What do we mean by fluff? Essentially, we’re talking about all of the abstract, unfocused techniques that commonly show up in so many training programs. While it’s important for your leaders to be motivated, those “motivational” technique can only get them so far. It may feel good in the moment, but real-world practical skills are what will lead to consistent, reliable leaders at your organization. What’s the best practice? Rather than standing up on stage reciting platitudes, present tools and demonstrate their potential impact on relevant situations that your leaders will face.

5. Reinforcement

Leadership training, like any other soft skill training, should go beyond individual events. Your company’s leaders are some of its most valuable resources, so it would be prudent to invest in them and make their training and development an ongoing process. Follow up on a regular basis after the initial training to refresh what they have learned, reinforce important lessons, and layer on more advanced material.