Review: Dealstorming by Tim Sanders

CZ2YTDQVAAEn3p2Effective sales methodologies are usually based on a disciplined step by-step process that moves the relationship between buyer and seller from contact to close. The concept of brainstorming — the freewheeling, ad-hoc practice of putting a diverse group of people in a room and letting them throw out ideas without constraints or criticism — seems to be a poor fit for the discipline and focus of the sales deal. Former Yahoo! sales executive Tim Sanders disagrees. He acknowledges that advocates of brainstorming can overstate its effectiveness — recent studies have shown weaknesses in solutions emerging from brainstorming sessions. However, he argues, the brainstorming process also offers certain strengths — the power of collaboration among a wide group of stakeholders and contributors, the openness to innovative ideas — that can be missing in the traditional sales process.

Collaboration is vital: The enduring myth of the individual super-salesperson cutting amazing deals is highly unrealistic in an age of highly complex business-to-business sales. Even those organizations that boast about their sales teams are still probably dealing in sales silos that incorporate little input from other areas of the company. Thus, Sanders has been a long-time practitioner and proponent of what he calls “dealstorming” — a problem-solving methodology that combines the collaborative and inclusive features of brainstorming with the linear discipline of the sales account-management process.

In his fifth book, Dealstorming: The Secret Weapon That Can Solve Your Toughest Sales Challenge, Sanders provides a detailed description of the dealstorming sales process — specifically designed to help salespeople stuck in a deal with an intractable problem. From the sales perspective, the path to innovative solutions for the client is often blocked by other functions of the company that insist that the innovations can’t be developed or implemented, or will be unworkable or ineffective. Frustrated by the resistance, sales professionals refer to these other functions as “the land of no.”

 

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Join us for our next SoundviewLive webinar! 6/7 featuring Craig Hickman

Solving Your Toughest Business Problems

Date: Tuesday, June 7th
Time: 12:00 PM ET
Speaker: Craig Hickman

Click here to register!

Lackluster performance, sinking profits, and unmet stockholder expectations all stem from one source: a massive decline in employee engagement. Rather than blaming employees themselves for the decline, however, the Workplace Accountability Study reveals how to fix it: the secret lies with those who lead and manage our organizations.

In this Soundview Live webinar, Solving Your Toughest Business Problems, Craig Hickman tells us that in order to inspire employees to be fully engaged, men¬tally and emotionally, leaders must first and foremost fix accountability—in themselves, their teams, and the entire enterprise.

What You’ll Learn:

  • Create your Fix It Bucket List by taking the three-minute Fix It Assessment.
  • Identify the Accountability Trait in question.
  • Explore several tried-and-true solutions that will work for you, your team, or your entire organization.

Know Your Talent Better Than You Know Your Customers

The Decoded CompanyAmazon delights customers with recommendations that are spot on. Google amazes us by generating answers before we’ve even finished asking a question. These companies know who we are and what we want. The key to their magic is Big Data. Personalizing the consumer experience with the collection and analysis of consumer data is widely recognized as one of the biggest business opportunities of the 21st century. But there is a flip side to this that has largely been missed. What if we were able to use data about employees to personalize and customize their experience –– to increase their engagement, help them learn faster on the job and figure out which teams they should be on?

In The Decoded Company, the authors outline the six principles they’ve used to decode work and unlock the maximum potential of their talent, and share success stories from other organizations that have embraced this approach. The Decoded Company is an actionable blueprint for any company that wants the best from its people and isn’t afraid of radical approaches to get it.

IN THIS SUMMARY, YOU WILL LEARN:
• To personalize processes to the individual based on experience and offering training interventions precisely at the teachable moment.
• To codify organizational battle scars using actual code that watches your blind spots and gives your people a decision-making superpower.
• To prevail over hierarchies, reducing bureaucracy, increasing transparency and being wildly inspiring to teams.

 

Review: Under New Management by David Burkus

Speed Review: Under New Management“Management,” declares business school professor and author David Burkus in the introduction to his new book, “needs new management.” According to Burkus, too many companies are clinging to old assumptions, old processes and old habits that have grown obsolete. In Under New Management: How Leading Organizations Are Upending Business as Usual, he introduces a number of modern, sometimes surprising, approaches to management that directly challenge past practices and attitudes.

Burkus describes, for example, how some companies let employees take as much time off as they want. There is no allocation and monitoring of vacation days: If you want to take a vacation, take a vacation. Burkus also describes the concept of paying employees to quit. The longer you’ve worked at a company, the more cash you will get paid for quitting (up to a certain threshold).

A sample of the other new management approaches covered in the book includes:
• Banning emails
• Eliminating managers
• Making salaries transparent
• Abandoning open-office layouts
• Putting customers second.

Although they may sound counter-intuitive, if not fanciful in some cases, all of the new approaches presented by Burkus have been successfully implemented. The concept of paying employees to quit, for example, was made famous by Zappos, which will pay $4,000 in cash if new employees quit their jobs. Amazon has pushed the concept even further, offering cash for quitting once a year (the offer is a one-off at Zappos). The first year, employees are offered $2,000 to quit, and the offer goes up $1,000 every year after that until it reaches $5,000. The annual offer then stays at the $5,000 level.

Eliminating managers is one of the more surprising concepts in the book, yet it has also been successfully implemented. Burkus describes how new employees at Valve Software, an online gaming development firm estimated to be valued at $3 to $4 billion, have to get used to the fact that no one will tell them what to do.

Click here to read this review in full.

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Join us for our next Soundview Live webinar! 6/1 featuring Sydney Finkelstein

The Journey from Good Boss to Superboss

Date: Wednesday, June 1st
Time: 12:00 PM ET
Speaker: Sydney Finkelstein

Click here to register!

What do football coach Bill Walsh, restaurateur Alice Waters, television executive Lorne Michaels, technology CEO Larry Ellison, and fashion pioneer Ralph Lauren have in common? They share a similar approach to finding, nurturing, leading, and even letting go of great people. The way they deal with talent makes them not merely success stories, but what Sydney Finkelstein calls superbosses.

In this Soundview Live webinar, The Journey from Good Boss to Superboss, Sydney Finkelstein shares the fascinating stories of superbosses and their protégés. He explores a phenomenon that never had a name before and shows how each of us can emulate the best tactics of superbosses to create our own powerful networks of extraordinary talent.

What You’ll Learn:

  • Identify and inspire promising newcomers
  • Nurture employees into highly successful careers
  • Customize coaching to each protégé’s needs
  • Expand professional networks to transform industries

How Hyper-Growth Companies Create Predictable Revenue

From Impossible to InevitableWhy are you struggling to grow your business when everyone else seems to be crushing their goals? If you needed to triple revenue within the next three years, would you know exactly how to do it? Doubling the size of your business, tripling it, even growing 10 times larger isn’t about magic. It’s not about privileges, luck or working harder.

From Impossible to Inevitable provides a template that the world’s fastest growing companies follow to achieve and sustain much, much faster growth.This template includes the seven ingredients of hyper-growth: Nail a Niche, Create Predictable Pipeline, Make Sales Scalable, Double Your Deal Size, Do the Time, Embrace Employee Ownership and Define Your Destiny to make a difference, for yourself and your company, no matter what you do or where you work. Authors Aaron Ross and Jason Lemkin take each ingredient and break it down into specific steps to guide you through implementation. From Impossible to Inevitable helps you take impossible goals and turn them into inevitable successes for your business and team. You will achieve success even bigger than you can imagine from where you’re sitting today.

IN THIS SUMMARY, YOU WILL LEARN:
• To understand and apply the seven ingredients of hyper-growth.
• How to specialize your sales process and scale your sales team.
• What it really means to “do the time” in today’s business environment.
• The difference between functional ownership and delegation.
• How to define your destiny in a new or existing business.

Review: Presence by Amy Cuddy

 In 2012, Harvard Business School professor and social psychologist Amy Cuddy presented a TED talk on power poses and how the body impacts the mind. Viewed by tens of millions of people, Cuddy’s TED talk is the second most-viewed talk in TED’s history. Her book is Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges. That Cuddy’s research resonates so broadly is not surprising, as it addresses head-on the anxiety and sense of powerlessness that most of us feel in the face of daunting challenges or high-pressure situations.

The desire for “do-overs,” for example, is an experience that most people have shared. They wish they could go back into the job interview room and convey, through much better words, why they are the best candidate; they wish they could have a second chance to pitch their venture to a panel of potential investors; they wish they could erase the reaction they had to a senior leader’s proposal and replace it with a reaction that would be impressive and memorable.

We’ve all been there. Even 18th-century French philosopher and writer Denis Diderot experienced that emotion, which is why he coined the phase “l’esprit d’escalier” — staircase wit or, in an updated version, elevator wit. It refers to those perfect words that come to us only after we’ve left the meeting and are on our way out of the building. What happens, explains Cuddy, is we recover the presence that we lost under the pressure of the situation.

Presence, writes Cuddy, “is the state of being attuned to and able to comfortably express our true thoughts, feelings, values and potential.” Cuddy is not asking us to embark on a journey of self-discovery to the Peruvian mountains; she is simply helping us to succeed in that meeting, so that the wit occurs in the conference room and not on the staircase. The key to presence, writes Cuddy, is to feel personally powerful. Even social power — being in a position to control situations — will not overcome personal powerlessness. Personal power requires knowing our values and being true to our values. It requires an alignment of the various parts of ourselves: our thoughts, our feelings, our behaviors. Cuddy calls this “synchrony.”

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Join Us for a Webinar on 5/24: How to Manage Your Time and Accomplish Goals

How to Manage Your Time and Accomplish Goals
Date: Tuesday, May 24th
Time: 12:00 PM ET
Speaker: Chris Bailey

Register Today!

Productivity affects all of us; whether it be at home or in the office, there always seems to be a struggle to make time for all of life’s essential tasks.

In this Soundview Live webinar, How to Manage Your Time and Accomplish Goals, Chris Bailey takes us on his year-long journey to productivity. Through self-experimentation, Bailey offers counterintuitive insights on how to better-manage your time, attention and energy in order to accomplish more and not lose sight of the more meaningful things in life.

What You’ll Learn:

  • how to slow down to work more deliberately
  • how to shrink the unimportant and strive for imperfection
  • how to schedule less time for important tasks
  • the 20 second rule to distract yourself from the inevitable distractions
  • the concept of productive procrastination

Doing the Right Things Right: How the Effective Executive Spends Time

Image of Doing the Right Things RightInspired by Peter Drucker’s groundbreaking book The Effective Executive, Laura Stack details precisely how 21st-century leaders and managers can obtain profitable, productive results by managing the intersection of two critical values: effectiveness and efficiency.

Effectiveness, Stack says in Doing the Right Things Right, is identifying and achieving the best objectives for your organization — doing the right things. Efficiency is accomplishing them with the least amount of time, effort and cost — doing things right. If you’re not clear on both, you’re wasting your time. As Drucker put it, “There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.”

Stack’s 3T Leadership offers 12 practices that will enable executives to be effective and efficient, grouped into three areas where leaders spend their time: Strategic Thinking, Teamwork and Tactics. With her expert advice, Doing the Right Things Right will give you scores of new ideas on how you, your team and your organization can boost productivity.

IN THIS SUMMARY, YOU WILL LEARN:
• The 12 practices to be both effective and efficient.
• The three activities that help you make sense of the 12 practices.
• Why executives have evolved from being bosses to team members in recent decades.
• Strategies to communicate better and motivate your team.
• How to use technology to make you more efficient, rather than letting it overwhelm you.

Click here for the full summary!

Review: The Storyteller’s Secret by Carmine Gallo

TheStorytellersSecretYour Story Is Your Most Valuable Asset

One day in Pakistan, Taliban enforcers boarded a school bus, found the young girl they were seeking and shot her, leaving her for dead. But Malala Yousafzai refused to die, and her story would become a rallying cry for women’s rights around the world. Yousafzai, explains communications author Carmine Gallo, is not just a survivor; she is a storyteller. She grew up in a family of storytellers — people would walk for miles to listen to the sermons of her grandfather — and through her speeches and her best-selling book, I Am Malala, Yousafzai continues to inspire and lead a global cause for justice.

The Storyteller’s Secret, the eighth book by the prolific Gallo, is, not surprisingly, filled with compelling stories but equally filled with specific tools for communicating more effectively. The book is divided into five parts, focusing on storytellers who “ignite our fire,” “educate,” “simplify,” “motivate” and “launch movements.” Each chapter within each part focuses on a specific tool, with stories or speeches by two or three speakers used as examples. The featured communicators run the gamut from the very famous (Steve Jobs, Bill Gates) to the not so famous (civil rights attorney Bryan Stevenson, entrepreneur Charles Michael Yim), all of whom have a story to tell.

For example, although Steve Jobs is recognized for his innovative genius and intense personality, the Jobs in this book (Gallo has written two books about Jobs) is first and foremost a superb communicator. In one of the most iconic speeches given by a businessperson, Jobs introduced “three new products” that would revolutionize the world: an iPod, a phone and an Internet communicator. These three products, the audience soon discovered, were actually one product, the iPhone.

Another Jobs example demonstrates that a story doesn’t have to be long to be effective. Jobs took just one sentence to tell a story that John Scully, the Pepsi Company CEO Jobs was trying to recruit, could not resist: “Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me and change the world?” Each chapter begins with a story, followed by a section that focuses on “The Storyteller’s Tools,” before closing with “The Storyteller’s Secret,” which recaps the core lesson of the chapter.

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