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We aren’t sales trainers, life coaches, or business theorists. We change rules. We change conversations. We change industry winners and losers. And we’re damn good at it.
Our strategies change the rules.
Your top team meets our savvy squad of provocateurs. And we talk about it all. The good stuff. The bad stuff. The scary stuff.
But it’s the truth. And the strategy inside this report is the secret to dominating your foes.
You might have questions. We have answers. We lay it all out on the table. We talk timelines and responsibility and goals.
Our team works alongside your executives to train new behaviors, create new marketing content, and to monitor and improve key performance targets. And we get results. Both of us. And that’s when it starts being fun.
You don’t want another generic training program or a commodity workshop. You want to be heard. You want to be understood.
That’s why we start by listening. We have processes that work. We have experience delivering results. Heck, we might even know what you are going to say before you say it.
But it’s not about us.
It’s about making sure you get the results that you want.
Learn more about how we solve complex problems and drive growth for big and small companies alike.
We love working with companies as they experience growing pains and face plateaus. While every company is unique, and their problems are specific to their business model, our research has revealed a common set of problems. If any of these issues are familiar, we’d love to help.
Companies typically grow up with their customers, starting out small and local where everyone is known to one another. As you grow and move into bigger, unfamiliar markets, you encounter much larger and more sophisticated competitors who are unwilling for you to evade their space. You find yourself coming in second far too often. You no longer dominate your market because your market no longer exists in the same way that it once did.
Are you satisfied that you understand your competitors’ value propositions and that you are positioned to compete head-on?
It takes tremendous energy and savvy to understand today’s global market. Whatever your business, you must play in a global market if you intend to grow. Positioning, messaging, and communicating key messages are paramount, particularly in the midst of massive changes in the way customers receive and perceive messages and interact with your brand.
Are you confident that your marketing team is energetically leading your company to position strongly as your market changes? Does your sales team respect and collaborate with marketing?
The natural cultural progression of a start-up company is from an entrepreneurial culture to an internally competitive culture. You begin to hire C-level executives and vice presidents. They come from a wide range of backgrounds and belief systems regarding how things work. Especially when money is tight, it is easy for them to become competitive for resources and attention. Thus a culture that once was unified around a common goal is becoming splintered around the goals of individuals and groups which may not represent the organizational goals.
Do you have a culture that can support and grow with your revenue growth goals?
Entrepreneurs and their founding teams are tireless in pursuit of their dream. But as you grow, you have more employees and fewer entrepreneurs on your team. Ownership issues are confined to a small team; everyone else feels entitled to a salary and benefits. There is a serious deflation of energy and an unwillingness to challenge the status quo, much less to change it. New leaders who come in as change agents are undermined by the passive aggressive behavior of key employees. Nothing happens fast enough. There is a lot of motion but no forward movement.
Are you frustrated by how slowly your requests are carried out?
Unless you have methods to understand and assess what’s going on in your industry, you can be blindsided by unforeseen problems or changes. Most companies we work with are very focused on their internal workings and not paying enough attention to very new ideas or solutions. In particular, you are vulnerable to totally new ways of solving the problems that you solve. The longer your team is together, the greater the danger that you will come to think alike or simply rehash your own internal issues.
Do you and your team know what’s going on outside?
If you make products, we know you have replicable manufacturing processes in place. But do you have a teachable sales process? A reliable method for sales to hand off to operations? A tested process to communicate systematically with your current customers and prospects? In most cases, our clients tell us “no, not really.” In today’s world, companies grow by adopting or creating replicable processes and teaching them to all current and new employees.
Are you sure that your team practices and teaches replicable processes?
Systems support and reinforce processes. In most cases, systems require technologies to support them. Today we have amazing and inexpensive systems to support sales, customer relations, internal and external communications, marketing, purchasing, inventory, and every other significant management process. But choosing and integrating systems requires knowledge and leadership that does not reside within every growing company.
Are you wasting manpower because your systems are insufficient to your needs?
Nowhere is the fast-growth company more vulnerable than in sales and business development. Typically it is the last area where management asserts its own goals, objectives, and methods. Rather, sales teams are left to their own devices with leaders vaguely unsure about how to inspire them, reward them, or hold them accountable. Most leadership teams are afraid of sales and completely incompetent to improve the sales effort. In a growing company, sales management and cost containment are crucial success factors that are far too often left to chance.
Are you confident that your sales process is producing the results that you need?
Superior delivery on your sales promises is directly related to the relationships among marketing, sales, and operations in your company. Most customer service malfunctions come from misunderstandings about what was promised, what was sold, what was bought. If your internal systems are not 100% focused on delighting your customer, your company is in trouble. We see far too many companies whose customer service needs to be improved yet there is internal resistance to facing the issue.
Are all of your customers delighted, all of the time?
Once upon a time you all worked in the same building. Then you all worked in the same city or the same state. Now your team is spread out around the country and around the world. How do you keep everyone on board and up to speed with what is going on? You don’t want to waste their time with too many meetings or clog up their inbox. Managing communications in a growing company is an art that we understand. The need to collaborate must be balanced with quick and nonintrusive communication and feedback methods.
Who is managing communication with your entire team in a rapidly changing environment?
We’re quite sure you have a strategic plan. But how did you create it and how central is it to your team’s day-to-day decisions? Most growing companies quickly set aside their strategic decisions in favor of the urgency of the moment. This practice is reinforced by business advice almost universally focused on tactics rather than strategy. If you want to grow strategically, every aspect of your business operation needs to be aligned under a strategic vision. That’s hard. And unusual.
Are you confident that your company is strategic?
What are you spending? And for what? As your company grows, there is increasing pressure to buy products and services to support all of the operational areas. You need a ruthless resistance to spending that will not produce ROI for you while at the same time investing in key technologies, systems, processes, and people who can quickly overcome the cost of acquisition factor.
Do you have all of your costs under control?
Who’s in charge? Is it you and your leadership team? Maybe you’ve grown your company to be a comfortable lifestyle business for you and your family. If you don’t really have the drive to grow it further, maybe you need to step into a new role. Many entrepreneurs who are superb at building the start-up do not have the temperament to manage the maturing organization. And that’s okay! Many alternatives are open to you. Or perhaps you still want to lead but you are not satisfied with the talents of the leadership team you’ve built around you.
What’s your keen assessment of leadership in your company?
When you are small and aggressive, your highest value offering is differentiating ideas. You make bold assertions. And you back them up with creative research and passionate presentation. As you grow, you stop looking for answers. Your team stops leading with creativity. You just go through the motions, sharing industry statistics and bragging about your latest awards. You are leaving money on the table with your best clients and limiting your ability to reach new client and penetrate new industries. If you aren’t pushing the conversation, someone else is. And your clients are listening to them.
Are you as creative as you used to be?
Just because it worked in the past doesn’t mean it works now. Your sales and marketing strategies have to evolve or you won’t be able to grow. It’s only natural that you gravitate to the methods and skills that got you here. But you’ll have to adapt and evolve or you won’t be able to grow beyond where you are right now. You’ll need a different strategy, different personal, different ideas, and a different way of thinking. It doesn’t need to happen over night. But you do need to be willing to change. If you stay the same, you’ll get run over by the type of zealous competitor you used to be.
Are you open to change? Do you encourage new ideas? Do you push your leaders to take risks and try something new?