Tag Archives: selling

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caring gracefully

Caring Gracefully Is In Short Supply

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Caring gracefully may be exactly what your organization is missing. Are you stuck between offerings and volume? Are the big box stores or eCommerce sites rattling your cage?

How will you compete?

The best way to get more is to bring it all to scale. Scaling your product and services is the best way to get bigger and often, yes, get better.

Where will you invest? Time, money, or people? Perhaps all of those?

Scaling not Failing

The small mom and pop restaurant will often fail when they try to expand. The small repair shop struggles to compete with the franchised option. And your product on shelves in Walmart, Best Buy, or available from Amazon may attain a different scale when compared with the small retail shop or static webpage.

The difference may come from the investment that many leaders overlook. The investment is in driving purpose which drives caring.

Many organizations and businesses insist that they are family-oriented. They insist that working in one of their shops, warehouses, or production facilities is just like being part of a big family.

Is it true?

Caring Gracefully

Talk is cheap and true caring comes with a price.

The price is the sacrifice that people make when they care more.

It starts with a well-defined purpose. Achieving the metric matters but it isn’t achieved in dollars and cents. It’s achieved when people care enough to push more, push harder, and pull it off.

A deeper level of caring means everyone understands why quality inspection seeks perfection and not just to be good enough. It’s why packaging matters and the brand is built from a reputation not the size of the facility or number of locations.

People who work together for a common cause, who are smart, value learning, and want to do the job right are far more likely to achieve more than the competing organization that cares less.

The small shop or the multimillion-dollar franchise. The retail store or the eCommerce site. Caring gracefully matters.

Buying state-of-the-art equipment is one price to pay. It will never be enough to beat a team that invests in purpose and caring first.

It’s often hard to find.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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good deals

Good Deals Should Be For Your Best Customers

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How are you treating your best customers? Are they acknowledged through cleverly branded rewards programs? Are they getting good deals?

How are repeat customers treated as compared with the on-boarding of new customers?

Switch your lease from one car brand to a different car brand and you’ll get a discount.

Sign up for cable or satellite television and we’ll give you a lower bill for 12 months.

Why do some businesses feel the need to punish their best and most loyal customers by offering better deals to brand new customers?

About the Data

Data driven analysis and decisions are certainly valuable. Data driven decisions are also sometimes supported by assumptions.

The existing customer base will continue to spend as much this quarter as they did last quarter.

Our best customers can afford to pay a higher margin.

Our high-volume customers will never notice.

While this may seem silly, almost ridiculous, it is a popular path for many businesses. The quest for growth or the quest to stop the bleeding allow assumption-based leadership decisions to punish the best customers.

Who Cares?

There is at least one other assumption. The assumption that the customer doesn’t care.

Just smile and talk really nice, ask about their children, grandchildren, or pets. Chat it up a bit. It isn’t their money.

Have them use their corporate credit card. Remind them that they get personal points on dollars spent.

We could certainly bring up integrity and ethics, but many believe that is just the way corporate America rolls. It all works, until it doesn’t.

Good Deals

Like many things in life and in society, someone is paying. Free stuff or free deals are sometimes good for one party while a different party is paying.

Are you truly appreciating and rewarding your best customers, or are they being punished?

Who is really paying?


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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sales distraction

Sales Distraction Inhibits Goal Achievement

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We all sell. Even those who are not officially in a sales role, sell. What sometimes seems like prospecting may be exactly what is causing a sales distraction.

Movement and motion are important, yet results are what matter the most.

Motion Isn’t Selling or Buying

People browse the internet, watch videos, and search eBay or Amazon. They don’t always buy; the activity of the search is a distraction. It’s window shopping.

In the summer, in suburbs or rural communities, there are often yard sales. People scatter their junk on tables and under canopies. The neighborhood gets involved, often there are cardboard signs, parking problems, and rubberneckers.

People who engage often don’t spend much, but they have some fun browsing. It gets them together with a friend or two, doesn’t cost much, and is more of a distraction rather than buying.

The same is true for many festivals, auctions, and community fairs. More of a distraction than commerce.

Those selling have a different role. Their strategy is to move the product, make a dollar, and improve their situation.

It may be for charity, to remove some clutter, or even a hobby business.

Sales Distraction

In the workplace, when trying to sell people sometimes seek an excuse or a distraction.

They claim they are prospecting, knocking on doors, and making calls. Yet, performance data still illustrates a pattern of coming up short.

There is blame towards a lack of collateral, the outdated website, or unfavorable economic conditions.

Sales tactics can become an activity. Check the box, do the labor, fulfill the role.

Have the goals been met?

Boxes checked are not always the same as goals achieved.

Rocking in a rocking chair gets you moving, yet you really aren’t going anywhere. It’s just motion.

Don’t get distracted.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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sales tactics

Sell Me This Pen And Other Sales Tactics

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“Sell me this pen,” is a line from the movie, Wolf of Wall Street (2013), starring Leonardo DiCaprio. If you haven’t seen it, I am happy to recommend it. What sales tactics are you using? We all sell, right?

Sell Me

Our telephone rings with an unknown caller appearing on the display, many will skip it.

An unsolicited or unknown email appears in our Inbox and we may just delete it.

A letter arrives in our postal system mail (snail mail) and when we don’t recognized it we may just pitch it in the trash.

On the other hand, we are often known as a society that loves to buy things. Many get direct deposits to their bank accounts from their employer, and likely just as many or more have automated bill pay for home utilities, loans, and other conveniences.

Buying Addicts

There are people who we may suggest are addicted to Amazon, Ebay, or their local shopping venues. It is easy to spend, and for some, it is an enjoyable experience.

If we like to buy, why are we so put off by the telephone calls, email messages, and letters?

For many, it may be that they are not comfortable with persuasive selling. It is the selling process that we’ve become adverse to because of snarky telemarketers, pressure to add a dollar for charity, or to get thirteen records for a penny when you commit to buying one a month at full price for a year (circa late 1970s or early 1980s).

Do we like to buy, shop, and spend our money? Of course, many people do, the difference is the sales process. When we feel pushed, we sense, “this will benefit them more than me,” and we often refuse the offer.

Sales Tactics

What if it were sold it differently? What if we were sold something that answered all the questions (Alexa, Google Home), and helped you achieve your goals, or made you look and feel great?

It seems to me that persuasive selling is worn out.

If so, success then must come from offering to help, not asking someone to buy.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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Leading Sales Across Generations – Boomers to Millennials to Gen Z and Back.

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Are you responsible to sell across the five generations active in our workforce today? Surprising to some, nearly every professional has some sales responsibility, from selling themselves, to selling project ideas, and of course to include those who occupy full time sales positions. It is important to keep in mind that a one size fits all model created by a boomer without consideration for gen Z buyers will struggle just like a smartphone app developed by gen Z may not be ever be downloaded by a traditional.


I don’t want to confuse medium with message, brand promise with value proposition, or the nature of transactional sales as compared to consultative sales. What I am offering are three general characteristics to keep in mind when reaching across any of the five active workforce generations.

Anticipate conditions of satisfaction: To suggest you “put yourself in their shoes” may seem to be over simplifying things, but that should probably be one of your first objectives. Assuming what you are selling reaches across all generations, consider what differences will exist and what will reduce concerns or refusals. Make every attempt to view your product or service through their lens. Think gen Z selling a tablet computer to a just retired traditional.

Understand relationship parameters: Connecting with the customer and building relationships will vary. Gen Z may be thrilled to explore communicating through a follow-up text message while earlier generations may believe in eye-to-eye, face-to-face, handshakes and hard copy signatures. Always consider every customer touch point from brick and mortar buildings, to websites, to personal interactions. The value of touch points are critical, a gen Z will expect to see your website on mobile, while a traditional may expect a personal visit. Build the relationship their way, not yours.

Never waste their time: What constitutes a waste of time? It may depend on the generation. A meeting with a traditional that incorporates background and theory of the goods and services (which takes more time) may feel like a very appropriate and well invested use of time. On the other hand a 30 second elevator pitch may be all a millennial or gen Z needs to hear. This doesn’t suggest who is correct or who makes better decisions but it does suggest there are differences. Seek commonalities by considering how time is valued across the generational continuum.

A boomers satisfaction in an automobile purchase may be very different from gen Z. A real estate (home) purchase by traditionals may be very different as compared to millennials. Methods for consultative sales versus transactional sales should be carefully considered and will definitely impact your approach. Mediums, branding, and value propositions also need careful consideration and if you’re spanning all generations be sure to seek commonalities not just develop a focus on differences.

As with everything related to selling, communicating, or working across the generations there are variances in personal style regardless of the generation and in many cases there are variances from day-to-day, or even across weeks or months since schedules, job pressures, and even amounts of sleep may condition both personal and professional interactions.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker, and coach that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is the author of the newly released book, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at DennisEGilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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Good Race

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It seems like we all sell something. You often have two choices, the high road or the low road. You assess your confidence and the risk. In one choice, you approach the problem from the side. You try to bring the opposition down. You say little unattractive things that may be cleverly disguised as attractive.

Two Roads

It may sound like this:

“They’ve been providing good service. I’m not sure though, I understand they’ve been so busy as a result of their recent marketing campaign I don’t know if they’ll be timely. Our staff is big which costs us more and in this economy that is scary we don’t like to see anyone lose their job but it’s worth it to us to always have the immediate resources, we would love to have your business.”

Your conscious tells you that you haven’t really blasted the competition. In fact, you’ve said good things, but you’ve also painted the picture that they may not be able to deliver. Better yet, you’re tugging on their emotions with the “job loss” comment. Perhaps you’ve created doubt in the customers mind.  In your mind, you’re proud.

Another choice is to approach it straight up, also known as, the high road. It may sound more like this:

“I’m really not sure about how our competitors are doing, but what we offer has all the features and benefits that align with your expressed need and we have a team ready to dig in and tackle this. I’m willing to work hard to get and keep your business, you have my promise. What is the next step? We would love to provide a formal proposal.”

Your proud, you’ve honestly approached the situation and tackled it straight up.

Two people can’t win the race. One will take the high road and another will take the low road. In the beginning either road seems like a reasonable choice.

The high road may feel like the harder climb, but the low road will always keep you at the bottom.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a keynote speaker, corporate trainer, and consultant that specializes in helping businesses accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. Reach him through his website at http://DennisEGilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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