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Edition 18 – Focus On Sales

The lifeblood of every Family Business is through sales.

Whether your business manufactures a product, delivers a service, builds something or sells something, the key level of activity is sales.

So, why is it that so many Family Business owners don’t engage enough with their customers to generate sales. More sales from existing customers. New sales from new customers?

Here’s some examples that I’ve heard from Family Business in recent months for why they’re not out chasing sales:

  1. They’re too busy — they might be now, but what about next week, next month or next year?
  2. They can’t get the right reports out of their system — reports don’t generate sales. Chasing customers does.
  3. They need to upgrade their IT — unless your selling IT, using an upgrade as an excuse for not selling is like saying you’re not going to drive your car because you might strike traffic!
  4. They’ve had problems with suppliers — so find a new supplier.
  5. Their clients are too fussy with their demands — so if you phone or see them and find out why, you might just get more work from them.
  6. Last time I quoted them they didn’t take the order — maybe you were too expensive. Or maybe you didn’t engage with them enough to express the value.
  7. Our systems aren’t right — so keep selling more with the systems that you currently in place and set up a project team to work on improving your systems.
  8. We can’t find the right people — advertise; ask your team if they no anyone, trawl through Linked in and see if anyone is suitable; recruit an agency to search for you.

I kid you not, these are the examples that I’ve heard in recent months as to why Family Business owners are sitting inside their offices or factories and not out engaging with people.

Some of the reasons are more valid than others. However, the Family Business owners that are complaining the most are exhibiting similar traits. And those traits fall into 3 broad categories:

  1. They’re bored.
  2. They’re lazy.
  3. They’re comfortable.

All 3 are major obstacles to building a sustainable future for your Family Business.

If you’re bored, you’ve got some serious questions to ask yourself. Our great e-book, The Crisis of Boredom, which is available here — — should be your first stop.

If you’re lazy, then you need to engage someone to make you accountable and help drive you out of our slumber.

If you’re comfortable, then you haven’t taken the time to stop and focus strategically on the potential that is sitting inside of your business — or the potential freight train that may be heading for you and you don’t know it.

Sales are at the heart of every Family Business. If you don’t focus on sales and allow yourself to make excuses why, a rude shock may be closer than you think.

This Week’s Tip

Look at the past week. How much time did you spend engaging with former, current and future customers? What was the result of those discussions? If you increased that contact by 30%, what different result might that generate?