November 2013

Appreciate and Celebrate – Scott’s Sales Yoga Thought for the Day

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Think about your sales history. How often do you reach a goal, only to immediately start thinking of your NEXT goal?  Do you take time to appreciate and celebrate each achievement, or are you already on to your next client?  When you complete a task, do you look back and see all the things you could have, should have, done better or faster?  Are you your own worst critic?  Do you tend to focus on what you do wrong instead of what you do well?

I read in the Washington Post, in an article by Kathleen Parker, that Steve Job’s last words were supposedly, “Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow.” Imagine doing this each day and not just at the end of your life.

On this Thanksgiving Day in the United States, and each day hereafter, I hope you’ll take time to think about your achievements and say, “Oh wow, Oh wow, Oh wow.”

P.S. Happy Thanksgiving! I’m grateful for the opportunity to share these thoughts and words with you.

When you enroll in the Open More Door, Close More Deals series you’ll receive six months of weekly videos for the discounted price of $125US and also take part in a bonus TeleClass.

Scott WintripAppreciate and Celebrate – Scott’s Sales Yoga Thought for the Day
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Shoot the Messenger

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Wintrip Consulting Group : Take No PrisonersTake No Prisoners is a free weekly memo from Scott Wintrip that explores how Radical Accountability prospers companies and changes lives. Instead of taking people hostage with outdated, heavy-handed, and ineffective methods of management, measurement, and motivation, Radical Accountability focuses on creating an unwavering responsibility for getting what matters most done.

Often, leaders have to deliver news or information that people find upsetting. To shield themselves from the potential fallout, they typically say some variation of “don’t shoot the messenger.”

Imagine a very different scenario. A humble leader stands before the crowd and says:

“Today, you’re going to want to shoot the messenger. And if you feel that way, that won’t be surprising. As a company, we screwed up. We projected growth numbers that we are not going to hit. As a result, we have to cut back on overtime and the bonus payouts we normally do this time of year. This is not your fault, and unfortunately you are going to be impacted even though it’s not your fault. We anticipate this cutback to last two months, and I’ll be updating you weekly as to any changes in this projection. Now, here is what we’re going to do to keep this from happening again…”

The practice of Radical Accountability requires rigorous honesty to rectify problems, learn from mistakes, and avoid repeating those mistakes again. It mandates that leaders “say what they mean, without saying it mean” as they tell the truth, even when that truth may be hard to hear.

By engaging in this type of honest and open communication, it allows everyone to be part of the solution instead of a party to blame and accusations.

This Week’s Radical Accountability Activating Action: Incorporate “say what you mean, just don’t say it mean” anytime you have to deliver news that may be hard for people to hear. Engage everyone, through compassionate communication, in being part of the solution instead of remaining stuck in the problem.


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Visit my web site: https://www.WintripConsultingGroup.com

Scott WintripShoot the Messenger
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Be a Man and Sell Like a Girl

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In an attempt at emasculation, people say things like:

  • “Man up!”
  • “Quit being such a girl.”
  • “Why don’t you go put your big girl/boy panties on?”
  • “Suck it up, buttercup.”

While some stereotypes have roots in reality, these are by no means a permanent condition, even when based on a kernel of truth. Women have proven they are highly capable at handling “traditionally male” roles that require assertiveness, tenacity, and fearlessly bucking the system and status quo. These abilities were always there. Today they are more noticeable as a result of numerous women practicing and owning these behaviors.

The same goes for men—we are capable of sharing our feelings, being fully present in conversations, asking someone their opinion (and actually caring about the answer), and taking the time to get to know someone before rushing to consummate “the deal” (both professionally and personally). We, the male of the species, do so, when and only when we accept, practice, and own these as good, right, and productive comportment.

I wrote Sales Yoga to promote better practices that help to eliminate destructive and counterproductive attitudes and behaviors. Gender bias serves no useful purpose; learning from and practicing the best traits often attributed to each gender does.

Real men and women eat quiche, swear like truck drivers (when alone in the car so the kids can’t hear), cry during tear-jerker parts of movies, get their hands dirty, and hug their friends. They also hang on every word said by a buyer and assertively ask for the business when they can provide what the buyer needs.

So, “man up” by assertively collaborating with buyers to help them access the value you provide. “Sell like a girl” by engaging in the best conversations you and the buyers have ever had, hanging on every word as though doing so is a precious gift. Because it is, for both of you.

Learn more about Sales Yoga: A Transformational Practice for Opening Doors and Closing Deals

Scott WintripBe a Man and Sell Like a Girl
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Your Radical Accountability Minute – Why Keeping Your Word Doesn’t Matter

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These insightful tips should be used before making promises so that you are sure to follow through and stay true to your word.

Scott WintripYour Radical Accountability Minute – Why Keeping Your Word Doesn’t Matter
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Stop Chasing the Deal

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Chasing deals and working closest to the money have been common practices for decades in selling…and they illustrate what is wrong with the profession. When salespeople chase deals and focus too much on making a buck, the buyer gets lost in the process. It’s little wonder that virtually no one likes to be on the receiving end of a sales pitch.

Stop chasing the money and start chasing mutual ROI (defined as the needs of all parties being met). When done right, the buyer gets what s/he needs (i.e., a product, service or something of value) and the seller gets what s/he needs (i.e., compensation, an account or something of value). Value is transferred to the customer and the salesperson and his or her company are equitably compensated since mutual ROI creates an equitable quid pro quo.

Everyone can win when salespeople go after the right thing.

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Scott WintripStop Chasing the Deal
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Radical Accountability Best Practices

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Scott's Razor

simply effectiveRadical Accountability is a practice of strategies and behaviors that creates an unwavering responsibility for getting done what matters most. Here are three of the best practices:

1. Don’t Avoid the “F” Word

Many people are offended by the “F” word, and why wouldn’t they be? Saying it makes people uncomfortable.

Now, before your mind goes too far with this, the “F” word I’m referring to is “fire.” Employees hate being fired, and most managers despise being on the delivering end of this news. However, letting someone go is often an act of compassion.

If someone is not meeting expectations, and the interventions you’ve employed are not changing that, then it’s time to let go. By firing that individual, using the most compassionate communication methods you can, you actually engage an even more powerful “F” word, “facilitation.” When it no longer makes sense to continue someone’s employment, this facilitates their moving on and yours as well. Actor Jerry Seinfeld, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Coach Bill Belichick all got canned during their careers. Yet, these firings became the impetus that allowed them to reach greater successes.

So, go ahead, when it’s time to let someone go, fire with compassion. When you do, you may just be creating some opportunities for those people to experience some other “F” words, such as another job that’s a better FIT or a life opportunity that is simply FABULOUS.

2. Suffer No Fools or Victims

A dear friend of mine recently shared details of her daughter’s whining about her current circumstances. Being the ever confident and highly competent mom, she did not allow Molly to pull her down into the clutches of a victim spiral. Instead, she pointed out that, while not everything about the situation was of Molly’s making, she had done nothing to try and rectify the problem.

While there are real victims of crimes even people who have been impacted by some of the most serious of offenses, such as rape and violence, often choose to rally above their circumstances. Victimhood is a state of mind, not a perpetual state of being.

Radical Accountability requires us to take responsibility for the events in our lives at work and at home, even when we have not caused them. Leaders who are committed to Radical Accountability don’t tolerate corporate victimhood and, as a result, create a culture where employees are less likely to engage in self-pity, recriminations, and remorse.

Suffering is optional, including the foolishness of a victim mentality.

3. Manage Your Nice Person Syndrome

NPS–Nice Person Syndrome–is a “condition” most managers have that causes inconsistent accountability. To help you assess if you have NPS, answer the following questions:

  1. Are staff not held consistently accountable in your firm?
  2. Do you come up with justifiable reasons when expectations are not met?
  3. Are reprimands or terminations delayed or do not happen at all?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, you have at least a mild form of NPS. Don’t worry, it’s not terminal.

To succeed as an employee in most jobs, you have to be a nice enough person (or able to fake nice) to build relationships. These same nice people end up as managers and, as managers, it does not feel nice to hold other people accountable. That’s why virtually every manager has some degree of NPS. The nicer you are as a person, the worse your NPS tends to be.

Sharon, a manager from Michigan, took this to heart and immediately began watching for specific instances where her NPS showed up. “I was amazed how many times each week my NPS was running the show,” she said. To combat this, Sharon began some coaching with me and we discussed specific strategies to counter this issue. “The most important thing you shared Scott was that I am not responsible for my first thought, but I am responsible for my next action. My first thought is often how much I dislike holding people accountable. My next action was to do it anyways because, if I don’t, I will be contributing to their failure.” Within three months of our work together, she had improved the productivity of her team by more than 40%.

The important thing to recognize is that feeling discomfort at holding other people accountable is normal, with reprimands, layoffs, and firings feeling even worse. Life is full of things we don’t like, yet we do them anyways. Even though it may not feel good, holding others to a standard that will help them succeed is the right and compassionate thing to do.

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Scott WintripRadical Accountability Best Practices
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Can the Canned Selling

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Scott's Razor

simply effectiveCans work well for beans and vegetables but fail miserably in sales. Yet, many sales organizations mandate that salespeople memorize or read specific soundbites designed for specific situations. Would you want to be on the receiving end of one of these impersonal, canned statements? This type of sales practice is just one of many reasons why people dislike hearing a sales pitch.

In Sales Yoga, we practice the art of Integrative Questioning to build rapport, develop understanding, and determine the value our customers require. This easy-to-use technique simply requires using all or a portion of a buyer’s response to keep the conversation moving forward.

A typical conversation using Integrative Questions goes something like this:

“Mrs. Buyer, why where you interested in meeting with me today?”

“Joe Smith had good things to say about you. We’re pretty happy with our current vendor, but we’re always open to new possibilities.”

“What would make you happier?”

“Well, that’s a good question. One thing is that it would be great if we could get what we need faster.”

“How much faster?”

“Right now, it takes four or five days. One to two days would be great.”

“What impact would getting what you need in one to two days have on your business?”

“Wow! I hadn’t really thought about that. I’m sure it would save us not just those extra days, but also some money.”

“How much money?

“Gee, if I had to guess, at least a few thousand dollars a week.”

“So if I can deliver what you need in one to two days, are you ready to start saving over $100,000 a year?”

“If you can show me a solution that does that, yes, I’m open to it.”

How could she not say “yes” to her own idea of something that would make her happier?

And no cans required!

Scott WintripCan the Canned Selling
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Faithful Versus Fearful Leadership

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Wintrip Consulting Group : Take No PrisonersTake No Prisoners is a free weekly memo from Scott Wintrip that explores how Radical Accountability prospers companies and changes lives. Instead of taking people hostage with outdated, heavy-handed, and ineffective methods of management, measurement, and motivation, Radical Accountability focuses on creating an unwavering responsibility for getting what matters most done.

Many of us have experienced the departure of a negative co-worker or manager from a company. Always, there is a collective sigh of relief as the removal of this cancerous presence breathes new life into the organization. No longer drained by the unhealthy distractions and toxic interactions, the team is free to focus on the business at hand instead of shielding and protecting themselves from the next wave of negative fallout. It’s little wonder that we often see a surge of productivity and profitability following the dismissal or resignation of antagonistic people.

Leaders who lead by fear are the worst of this bunch; I know, because I was one of them. Early in my career I was given tons of responsibility that I found overwhelming and scary. My biggest mistake was that I turned that fear around and used it on those who reported to me. I didn’t like me very much, nor did they. My wake-up call was the day Louise, a valued employee, walked out the door, right in front of a customer who had just walked in.

The good news is that I learned to lead by faith, not fear. Faith in a system, faith in people, and, most importantly, faith in my growing abilities to lead in a positive way. It wasn’t an overnight process, however, my transformation took a relatively short period of time because of the positive role models I sought out who coached me to a better way of being a leader. Because of their help and my commitment to the process, I went from being someone who was despised and feared to one that was admired and revered.

If you’re a leader who manages by any form of intimidation, coercion, manipulation, or scare tactics, stop it! Stop buying into such an archaic approach. Beating people over the head may have worked in the days of cavemen and dinosaurs; both are long extinct, as should be this practice. But don’t stop there. Changing how you manage requires commitment, support, and an ongoing process of change and adaption over time. Get a mentor. Get a coach. Get help! Radical Accountability promotes faithful leadership over fearful leadership.

For those who manage leaders who lead by fear, stop putting up with this. You’re culpable if you don’t. Set clear standards and expectations for a positive approach of unwavering responsibility. Hold your leaders to improving and meeting this standard. If they can’t, let them go. Move on.

The only thing we really need to fear is when we don’t address leader induced fear. That’s what’s truly scary.

This Week’s Radical Accountability Activating Action: Take at least action today that will at least begin to remove the fear factor from the leadership in your firm.


Only ten days left to save on enrollment in the Open More Door, Close More Deals subscription series.

Follow me on Twitter! You can find me here: https://twitter.com/ScottWintrip
Every day I provide pithy pieces of advice and wisdom. Join the growing crowd who read these gems every day.

You may subscribe and encourage others to subscribe by clicking here.

Check out my podcast series called Simply Scott on iTunes.

If you’d like to reach me, email: scott@ScottWintrip.com or call my direct line: (727) 502-9182

Visit my web site: https://www.WintripConsultingGroup.com

Scott WintripFaithful Versus Fearful Leadership
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