In this episode, we discuss the importance of building a company culture with strong recognition practices like specific achievement shout outs and celebrations which increases engagement and boosts morale. Recognition should be given to employees for their hard work and achievements as well as their loyalty and dedication.
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Welcome back to the growth show. Season two. I'm here with my partners and growth. Eric Watkins. Hello. Hello. Jeff winters Welcome back to Season Two, season two baby. We have had a ton of fun. We took our first season all the advice we got from the Grow nation that what our fans are called Grow nation. The growshowians, I said the grossshowians, the growshins, the growshowians, we watched tape like any great team, we watched some tape, right? We are new and improved season two, even better tips, more actionable advice. And a little bit of fun along the way a little bit a lot more fun. Even more fun, even more fun, even more fun. We have a couple of surprises for you. And I'm excited to get into it. Jeff Winters is going to start with what we like to call two truths, and a lie from LinkedIn. Two Truths and a Lie. I love it. What's this all about? So for those are you going to use names? I'm going to use some names. For those new to this segment, what we're going to do here is we're going to spotlight each episode, two posts that we read on LinkedIn that are true, and one that we strongly believe. And in some cases, may go as far as to say we know are false. They're liars, liars. And part of this is funny. Well, a lot of this is funny. We're gonna have some fun with it. But also there's some seriousness to it, guys. Because people go on LinkedIn. They read stuff that people post, and they sprint back to their business and they implement it. And there is no sheriff of LinkedIn to say, hey, stop sign before you go and implement this. This is wrong. This is a thing you should not do. And so we are going to play a tiny part in helping people know what they should use and what they should. Sheriff of LinkedIn Shall we get into it? Let's start with a couple of truths. First truth comes from Zorian Rotenberg. And Zorian says great companies will not repeat will not deprioritize growth in an economic downturn. Great companies will not deprioritize growth in an economic downturn. And I think this is A. extremely timely and B. couldn't be more true. I think as I as I recall. Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce said something to the effect of you should spend on sales and marketing all the time. But in when times are tough, you must spend on sales and marketing, I will double down. I think about that, like the stock market. Right. Right now people are freaking out because of where we're at. And the people with a lot of money. What are they doing? They're pouring money into the market. They know that there are good buys that are coming back. I couldn't agree more. I'd call that a truth for sure. Truth, Eric. Yeah, absolutely a truth because no company stays the same. You're not, you're not just gonna stay the same. You're either growing or you're dying every single day. And the moment you make the decision to stop prioritizing the growth of your business, you've already started the dying portion, no matter the economic situation. Truth, all agree, checkmark all agree, check, check. Truth Number two, comes from Josh Ahlquist. And Josh says leadership is not just allowing your employees to do whatever they want. It's tempting to do that. It's easier in the short term. It avoids confrontation. But in the long term, it will backfire. This, to me is about accountability. That's what this is. And I couldn't feel any more strongly about the fact that we are in a a, a turning point, right like like today we're at a turning point for businesses where they're either going to say we are going to hold people accountable, which is a good thing. And and Scott's got a 50 for 50 on this, which is a not only a good thing, it's a great thing. It's a necessary thing. Or we're going to avoid confrontation at all costs. We are so afraid that people are going to quit that we're just going to let them let our employees do whatever they want. Which in certain cases is not in their best interest. It's not in the client's best interest. It's not the company's best interest. I think this is a very important truth. You know, give people the gift of high expectations. I couldn't agree with Josh. Right? I love you, Josh. Love you, Josh. Josh, there aren't many people that have the guts to say what you're saying right now. Because it's just not what people know. Unfortunately, now, people are growing up, they're not being held accountable in school. They're not being held accountable, you know, on their sports teams, by their parents, you know, and then we get them into business. And they have difficulty, not being able to do everything that they want to do and live life exactly the way that they want to live it. And that doesn't always work, especially in the workplace, when there are processes that are lined out. So I that you know, my vote is a truth, for sure. Thanks, Josh. Hi, Josh. I agree with Josh as well. And I think, you know, I'm a big fan of the five levels of leadership, by John Maxwell. And one of the things he talks about is that what has to come first, in a leader and team member relationship is the team's mission or vision. And what he's talking about here, my opinion is that the team's mission and vision comes first, before being kind or nice, or whatever it may be, you can do both. But you if you sacrifice that, if we just come to work all day, and we just hang out and have a great time, we're gonna all not have jobs very soon. So we're here to do to carry out our mission or vision. So I would agree with him. And now the lie the lie, and boys, we're not just going with any lie. We're taking on a little company called Gartner. Revenue, we're not taking them on, we're taking on the implication of what they say. Let me be clear, we're not taking them on. But I think this is a whopper. What do we got? A recent Gartner survey showed company mandates requiring employees to be in the office actually drive connectedness down, not up among employees with "radical flexibility". End quote, which is defined as considerable freedom over location schedule of work, schedule, work volume team and projects 53%, I assume of those employees reported a high degree of connectedness, whereas just 18% of those with low flexibility, reported a high degree of connectedness. Who did they interview? How many surveys and who did they interview? I don't know, they are very respected source we respect and love Gartner. I think this is a lie. I know it to be a lie. I do not think that employees are more connected with radical flexibility. I think it's true that they'll tell you that they are, right. But I think this is a big lie. And I think the world's turning on this. We've turned on this as a company. Yeah, when they do it. Right. When was the survey? I wouldn't question that someone answered the question that way. I would question that they understood what was actually happening with their organization? Well, I don't think that their people are more connected. By being out of office with more work from home flexibility will take take my opinion out of it, I have, I could probably give you a list of 100 people who have told me what being back in the office has done for them. A, B, who filled out the survey, it's probably all the people who have time to survey in our, in our, in the office connecting with people and they're too busy to fill out surveys. So it's a lie. It's a lie, Scott. All right. Like Eric said, we have people that were just not excited about coming back at all, that once they got back realized it was good for their mental health, they were able to collaborate in a in a in a better way. And we are on fire. We're back. Our culture is coming back to where it was before COVID. And you know what, people didn't love it. And we had to make the difficult decision to to come back we've still got a couple of opportunity days out of the office, maybe even more than a lot of organizations but in office, staring at each other, collaborating working as a team is more productive or, or some of the largest companies in the world wouldn't be making the move to have their people come back right now. You think they don't do surveys, they don't do studies. They don't just make moves like that. You know? without knowing exactly what they need to do to make their business better. Lie, employees will feel more connected with radical flexibility. Lie, lie. You heard it here first. I love it. You know, we were talking a little bit about whether or not we were going to actually call out who made the lies? And you did it. We called them out. You did it. And it's a big source. It's a big source, I don't think they lie. Can we use one case study? One case study, we had a team member that leaves and he wouldn't mind me sharing, but I won't say his name, left because of our lack of flexibility. Yeah. And coming back, he recently came back and he said, I didn't get to meet with my team in the six months at my new company, and I actually miss being in the office. I'm talking about like the champion, the champion of work from home. Radical flexibility. So to my point earlier I was gonna make earlier because that's such an important anecdote. Gartner didn't lie. Gartner did the numbers. But the implication is a lie, implication, the implication is a lie. And let me tell you all something out there. A little spoiler alert, you can save your survey on whether or not employees want radical flexibility. They do, you don't need to do the survey. They do. This is not a decision you can make based on the survey, it's just not, you got to make it based on what's in the best interest of the business [that's a great point], period. Yeah, if we're to be honest, we probably thought that more people would actually answer that they would be connected, right? Yeah. The world's changing for the better. All right, we are going to get into the 50 for 50. Again, this is, we put our heads together and came up with the 50 processes or policies or action items that we would do 100% of the time, if we started again, we all agreed. These are the these are the things that we would live by. And I'm going to start with one and these are not an order of importance just happens to be the one that we're going to talk about today. And that is forced recognition. Yes, I did say forced recognition. Love it. Love did say forced recognition. So you're thinking out there, I know you are, you're already thinking, I can't do that. It needs to be organic, you know, people are going to know that I was forced to recognize them. No, that's not true. All we're saying here is people deserve to know that the work that they're doing is important. Everybody wants to know that they're connected to important work. And they matter. They're important part of the team. Do we have our manager managers on a policy where they have to recognize people? Yes. But here's what we do. We say once a week, you have to find somebody on your team and recognize them for the good work they're doing. Now, a good manager should do this anyway. Right. But we're just putting the policies in place. Because we're growing like crazy. We have a lot of new managers. And we want to make it so important. That it's actually part of their metrics. And it's part of what we watch and measure what happens over time, then that's learned behavior, you got to do something what how many times before it becomes a habit? Well, I had, whatever it was couple months or something. But as we make our managers do this, then all of a sudden, it's second nature. And then they're not just doing it. Once a week, they're doing it daily, or multiple times daily. And it's been amazing to watch. And we put a nice channel together so that they could share with others. Guess what people like it. And they know that managers need to pick someone. Right? But guess what, when you're growing up, teachers had to pick one student to give the gold star. I always wanted the one person got the gold star. And guess what, Jeff never got them. And I did, right just four people in your class. But look, this works. Put something in place. Whatever the period of time is, where your managers have to do it, they still get to pick who they still get to pick how they still get to pick for what they're recognizing them for. But that means that your people that are on the front lines that are doing important work get recognized. And when they do they perform at a higher level and your company grows, forced recognition, lean in, give them a card, buy him a coke, send them a meme, send them an email, put it in Slack, recognize them in front of people, put it on a TV, write it on a whiteboard, do it in a lot of different ways. But do it right now, immediately if you're not doing it started today, Eric, what do you think? Well, I first off, I think you have to get a lot of credit for this, because you took a lot of flack for it. So when we implemented it for our company, there was a lot of pushback, including myself of like, Scott, I don't want to force people to recognize one another, like let this happen organically. But you saw that it just wasn't happening consistently enough. And you saw this future vision of what it could be. And now I see it in action. Like, it's the snowball effect, like the Snowball is so big, it's just rolling now. And it's to the point where something good happens, like someone will talk to me in a meeting about somebody that did something really good. And they'll say like, I gotta put this in the success channel. What? Like, that's just a, it's just a thing that happens. Now that wasn't even thought about before. It was just a comment that was made in the room. Now. It's taken on a life of its own, for people to really build it up. I I'm a convert on this. So when I came on board, I heard this i bristled, we're going, I don't understand why if people are doing such a good job, we can't. And this is what a lot of people out there will think, create the environment where recognition can and should happen. That's what I that's why I bristled and then I came to recognize Scott saying forced recognition. That's a provocative term. It's just a, it's a reminder, that's what this is, it is a reminder to do something that is so easy to have slip, because it doesn't quote unquote, move the needle, which by the way, it does absolutely all the other shit you're doing. It probably does. This is just a reminds provocative to say forced recognition. And it, it works. Because it needs to be, like have that underscore of importance. This is a reminder for managers and leaders to do probably one of the most important things they can do, which is recognize people and which in turn motivates them. And everyone I'm a huge proponent of this, the I think our people started with the you were saying it maybe gets skipped over. Your new manager sits there with 15-20 things they think that they have to do during the day. And they noticed something that was awesome. And they're thinking, God, I gotta get to Sam and tell Sam that I really enjoyed what he did with X client. But the day goes on, and they're filling out reports and doing things. And then the next day goes in the next day after that, and he or she forgets to sit down with Sam and just really recognize them for a job well done. If that's like that one thing that day, Sam is so productive of Sam probably figures out how to, you know, whatever it is go make more dials or learn the industry, they don't know well or be a better teammate, like a lot of things that were on the manager list anyway, probably get knocked off or checked off. Because, you know, the manager recognizes Sam, I couldn't believe this is a this is a must, I think I agree. Couldn't agree more. So go out there, put some sort of actionable plan in place for the recognition of your people, you doing it with your executive team, your executive team, doing it with their team, all the way across your entire organization. And I think you're going to be amazed at what you'll see just 30 to 60 days in, people love to share good stories. And quite frankly, we do the same thing. You know, we try to tie our customers in to write just and some customer success stories and recognizing our customers as well. So beautiful. Next thing we're going to get into is a section with Eric, what do we call this section here mining for growth goal. So we're going to rotate through calls, emails, LinkedIn and website on what is the best goal that we have over 15 years in business doing lead generation. So we're going to start with calls. It's why we started way back when this is our flagship product. Cold Calls. cold call so why people still cold call. You know what's funny is our dials to appointment and maybe we've gotten better, hasn't changed over the last 10 years. Stop it Ah, so instead of dying, where it's actually better, like it's more impactful, and you know what, every time I hear someone say cold calling is dead, it's music to my ears. You know why? one less person making calls baby are for us more for us. So, so for any competitors, cold calling is dead out there. So stop making cold calls. But anybody else pick up the phone, it's a waste of time, don't let anybody else listen to this. So what we're going to talk about today is closing with value. So when people make their cold calling scripts, and they're taking their message to market, a lot of people go like this, if you know a lot of people either say like, what do we do different, and we're just going to leave with that we're not going to focus on the problems we solve at all. So problem focused is super important. But once you've gotten to that step, what a lot of people do is, what are the problems our customers are having? And they start there. And I actually think you should start here, write down a list of the three things that your company does better than anybody else. Not some generic bullshit that anybody could say not you have the best customer service, like what do you truly do? That's different than everybody else? From that list? What is the problem that you solve with that differentiator is what we'll call it. And then once you have that problem, use three sequential questions that you can dig in deep three levels on that problem. And then on every cold call, you have three problems, three sequential questions. And then from there, when you close, you can add in that differentiator, instead of saying it upfront where no one's listening to you, and no one cares about your company, you're actually saying it after you've brought up that problem on the phone, we call them relevant topics here. But I'll give you an example. Let's say an IT provider is going through their top three things they do as a business. And they say our one of our top things is we have five minute response time, like that is a faster response time than 99% of companies. So what they would realize is that okay, what is what is the problem response time solves? The problem itself is lack of downtime for a business keeps you up and running. And because we know how painful and how expensive that can be. So they would ask three questions like this. So in in, in the spirit of response time, or lack of downtime, they would say, what would it look like for your business? If your technology was down for an hour? When was the last time you experienced downtime as a business? What are you doing to ensure you never have downtime in the future? So you ask these questions, and these prospects are going to answer these questions, and they're going to give you some data. So then when you go to close the appointment, it's very easy. Well, based on what you shared with me today, Jeff, about the downtime that your company is experiencing, we would love to meet with you to discuss how we actually have a five minute response time for every prospect that we talked to, that we talked to that we work with, would Monday or Tuesday work better for you. So we're closing with the value instead of using the value upfront when they're when they're closed off to it, because then it makes perfect sense. And it's a perfect way to bridge to closing the appointment. I love the playbook. By the way, you're pretty good at this. How many appointments did we set in one day, the first day of this month, first day, we set 535 appointments? How many I'm gonna set this year total, we will set roughly 75,000 between sales enablement and fulfillment, delivery, delivery for our clients and sales. Are they small companies, big companies, what are what are our clients, it's all over the map. It's all over the map. You know, we have some fortune 100 companies that we work with. And we do some very large kind of whale hunting programs. And then we have, you know, your startup company that's just doesn't have any clients and they're trying to grow their business. And then we have companies all in between, across multiple industries across multiple industries in every state, in every state. And the beauty about this tip is it doesn't matter. I don't care what you sell. This approach can work for you 1000s and 1000s of calls and 12 years later, you know you land on a process that that works. So hopefully our audiences replaying this and jotting down notes and implementing it into their revived cold calling revive cold call. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. And what do you think? I think we're this sticks out to me is so often you hear the cold calling advice. Tell him what to do. Tell me why you're different. And you're right, Eric, when I get when I get a cold call or when everybody gets a cold call. You're like a little there's a moment of disorientation up front where it's like okay, wait, do I do I know this person? Do I have this problem interest in this? Do I want to stop this? Like you're have this internal thinking that's going on and you're like half paying attention? If not, why waste the most important part of your spiel, when I'm not fully engaged in this call? I think it's a noteworthy difference and I think it's something that People who are making calls. First of all, if you're not making cold calls want to grow your business, what are you doing. But for those who are making calls or manage people who make calls, this is something you can implement tomorrow. Yeah, I like to use it as like the analogy of like the door opening, like say you're knocking on doors old school cold calling, right? Like you're trying to use your best statement as the door is just like creaked open, just a little bit like, wait until you get the door open a little bit by asking some questions about the problem that's super relevant to what really, really makes you different as a company. It's what's worked for us. And now when we have this playbook, and that's really one of the key concepts. And what we do. And the other side is like, there's some really smart people that are like, just focus on the problems that the prospect is having. And that's great. But if those problems don't relate to something you do really well as a company, then you're leading yourself down a path where ultimately you're not going to have you know, the a really compelling reason that meat. Great point. I love it that you're bringing the fire episode one, episode one bringing the hate e one s two e one s two. Love it. So hopefully, as an audience, you know, it's becoming fairly obvious what the flow is for us here. We're trying to basically lay out the advice that people are giving online and kind of help you determine what is good advice and what's bad, then we're gonna go through and talk to you about how to set up your business for growth. And then Eric's going to talk about how to drive more leads, so that you can have more sales meetings through different channels. And then we get on to our next section where Jeff, now you have the leads, your company is set up for growth, you've got the leads, man, if you can't sell, you're in trouble. We've got a sales section, what's this call? This section is called Tales from sales. And I love that we've organized it this way. You're right, Scott, we got How are you going to get those leads? And then once you have them, what are some actionable tips, what are some actionable stories to illuminate why these tips work for how we can close those leads, better, faster, close more of them. So today's tip is very tactical. And it is simply this, you must talk about the price of whatever you sell on the first sales call on the first sales call. And that's controversial, it is totally controversial, except for in the minds of prospects, where it is nearly universal. And I have some data to back this up. Two out of every three buyers on the first sales call, want to talk about price. And unfortunately, about one in every five sellers wants to talk about price. On the first call, it is a huge disconnect. Buyers want to hear about price sellers don't want to talk about price. And as a seller, you must come to the buyer here, you must talk about price on the first call. And here's why. Because on average buyers before their first sales call or looking at tons of information on you, there's enormous amounts of information, frankly, everything they need to know about you set aside one thing is available to them online. You know what the one thing that they can't find online and not always but most of the time is the price, the price. So you must give the buyer what they can't find online because they're prepared. And what they ultimately asked for, which is the price because after that call, a decision is going to be made, not whether they're going to buy or not necessarily, although on some calls, that is the case. But the decision is going to be made on whether or not they should progress the buyer should progress with this in their mind. Should I take this any further? And if not fine? And if so let's how can they possibly make that decision? Without knowing what the price is? And here's what I hear people saying out there in their head. They go Jeff, we got to scope the project. We have to we have no idea what the price could be. Yeah, you do. You do? You do. You don't have to give him an exact dollar, give them a range ballpark at ballpark it. Do not let prospects off the call without having some idea of what the price of whatever you're selling is must do do it today. I love that I think that you're breaking down trust by avoiding price. And I've been through a lot of sales training over 30 years. And it is amazing how much of that training would suggest you putting it off, right? Yeah. Like, I'll get to that. Or I don't know yet, I've got to ask you more questions. And some of that is irrelevant. But you can always get to a per hour, I, here's what I charge per hour, but I gotta walk around, do an assessment of how many hours it's going to take me and then I'll give you an exact price, because I know that you want that, and you deserve it. But a lot of the training would suggest avoided for a long time or long time, right, which is not what the buyer wants. Yeah, I love it too. Because first off, I've never bought anything in my life without knowing the price. So you're gonna lose 100% of sales where your customers don't know the price. Second thing is there's so so many decision makers involved these days. And you just take for like, some of these people only talk to their boss once a month, once every two weeks, and time kills all deals. So if you have you presented to an influencer that has to go talk to their boss to get approval on it. And you didn't give him the price. What do you think their boss is gonna say the first thing? Well, how much does it cost? Why don't know, they didn't tell me? Well, then you just push out your sale, two more weeks, one more month. So I think it's crucial. And on the first call to discuss the price. I agree. Can you imagine going into an electronics store, you're buying a TV, you walk over to the wall, the TV's, they've eliminated all of the pricing. You have to hit a button for a rep to come over. You point it to TV like and then they've got to go through all of the features of the TV before you get the price of the TV. Would you ever go back to that store? Again? No, never so annoying. Because people go well, how much is it? Well, hang on, I want to I want to get to that. Because what they think in their head is I'm going to build so much value that the price is going to look trivial. And what the buyers actually thinking is, what are you hiding? Right, right. What are you hiding? And why are you hiding it? Can't do it. Say the price on the first call GIMP arrange of you must love it. Love it. I like this last section to do or not to do. So we're gonna start with, I did some cooking the other night? No, you didn't. I did some cooking. I don't believe it. And what you'll get to know in this section is there's a lot of incompetence around this table for everything other than business. And that is a truth. That is a that is a truth. That is not a lie from LinkedIn. So I got the grill started up. But I didn't get the grill started up. I turned the gas on and I realized, Oh, I forgot the LiDAR, right? It's on automatic grill. So I have to like you know, you got to stick to the long LIDAR in there and light it up. Turn the gas on, close the thing and go back into get the LIDAR get distracted. Do a couple other things. Come back out. Fire. Light the fire, boom. Flames up in my face. I think I'm dying. I think the house is on fire. Like yeah, you're missing part of an eyebrow. See? The face was good. But on my hands. I have burned off all the hairs on my Yeah, on my hands and not good. It could have been not good. And I was talking to somebody at work who said their friend's mom did it and like had third degree burns on their face. But moral of the story. Don't turn the gas on until you're ready to light it and don't close the thing after you turn the gas on or buy a grill that you know yeah, they all have this built in. How old is this grill? It's kind of new, you know? It's not too old. No Yeah, the over there's chicken is that like that doesn't exist doesn't exist. No, no. Oh no. Here this grill here is actually here's actually the thing it was an electric start and the electric start oh I broke on it so then I had to manually do it. Oh yeah. Yeah. Do you guys so have you ever started a grill in your life by the way Jeff? I'm gonna I'm I'm not an expert. I he gets delivery from truffles. Delivery Yeah, Chick fil A delivery No, I do grill I but I don't use the thermometer. I don't need the thermometer. I can I can with my finger feel and I know that sounds gross but I can feel when something's done with my finger and my my father in law who I love is like the grill master you know like Weber calls him for his fucking opinion and when I grill for the whole family's you think you think that chickens done now? Do you think it's an add on? I got it. I got that's the last a I don't understand the thermometer. You should be able to do it by yourself and be like, if you're over somebody's house eat and you can't ask questions about the grill and too much pressure on the griller Yeah, everybody's gonna get salmonella from Jeff's chicken. Oh, a chicken is burnt. I rather have dry chicken Sick Kids. Yes, that's marked down Sit down, mark that note that note that dry chicken over so you can't swallow that you can't sweat the grill or though like or do it yourself. No, you know or do it yourself. You're in my house. You're gonna eat my shit. Yeah, you're gonna need my bird chick. That's right. You don't like it put in the Miko don't and don't even ask me to put it back on. It's not going back on. It's going in the microwave or in your mouth. That's us. That's putting the fire we have hopefully brought you some incredibly actionable business advice. And hopefully you're a better griller hopefully, you're better than Eric Watkins. And just don't light yourself on fire. I'm glad I'm here today. I'm glad I'm here to you can't grow your business if you're not around. That's true. I think the quote of this episode was I'd rather have dry chicken over sick kids. There's something to that meal in the microwave, or it's going in your mouth. Like that one. I'm not putting it back on. As always, we enjoyed bringing you you know some good things that we've learned along the way. Put these action items into play. We feel like you're just ease your tractor growth. What do you think? Good episode one. Great episode one. Let's grow. Let's grow let's grow. The grow show is sponsored by Reggie are your outbound sales campaigns not driving the engagement you're looking for? Revenue leaders rely on reggie.ai to write high performing sales copy that cuts through the noise and books more meetings. Want to see how it works. Head over to reggie.ai/grow show and learn how to put the power of best practices and AI into the hands of your sales team.