Get a winning mindset - 10 suggestions

1. A winning mindset is in constant evolution and observation.
Even if you have always sold the same widget, your market is changing, the world around you is constantly tripping and flipping and you need to keep your finger on the pulse of what is next – and adapt your proposition accordingly. Whose job is that?

2. A winning mindset is multi-faceted – embracing multiple methods of listening, communicating and testing. Salespeople become relationship builders and decision-makers – to a degree. Customer Care people become “feedback central” and internal sales. Accounting becomes the warranty department. AND:

• Your web site becomes a magnificent doorway for information – to create interest, provide access and sell.
• Your web site welcomes feedback and questions and encourages and rewards participation.
• You connect with your clients on a regular basis so that you become welcome, anticipated, even invited.
• You test new methods of getting information across: social marketing and brilliantly considered print.
Who is tasked with this responsibility?

3. A winning mindset is aware of the competition, of what is new and of where the market is going.
There is a groundswell of change and it is affecting your business in ways that might not be immediately apparent.

• You need to spend time with your competition by attending industry events – together. You need to spend time with your clients and prospects by attending, or better yet, both sponsoring and attending, their events.

• By watching the most sophisticated businesses in any industry – visiting their web sites, understanding their messages and their techniques for selling, and learning about and participating in their clients’ lives – you will know what to aim for.
Who is tasked with this responsibility?

4. A winning mindset is sustained by a steady diet of creative ideas.
Bring creativity into your organization on a regularly scheduled basis. Make doses of creativity, innovation and odd articulation as necessary to your existence as breathing. If you know what you need to do, you will be listening for ideas that scream: I am for you! Who brings you creativity and innovation regularly?

5. A winning mindset leverages relationship-building for long-term success.
Imagine those bookstores that open in unleased stores for short periods of time, selling deeply discounted books. We don’t know the name of the vendor and we don’t care. We expect nothing more than authentic books, movies and videos at deeply discounted prices. We won’t try to return the merchandise, we won’t expect bookmarks at the cash desk or to be asked for our email address for book news and, quite possibly, we won’t even expect a smile. If you are in business for the long term, if you are counting on repeat business and glowing referrals, you have the chance to open the door to a relationship by providing information, offers and opportunity, on a regular basis and over the long term.
Who is your relationship champion?

6. A winning mindset embraces storytelling for how it can endear you.
Stories or narratives have been shared in every culture and in every land. Stories demonstrate our values and beliefs and they tell about the important milestones that have made us who we are. Told successfully, my story becomes your story, your story becomes their story. “Welcome,"  my father said to the visitor. "Twenty years ago, my wife and I came to this island because of the sea and the air. Today I am 82 years old and we still have every great day to look forward to – together.” This story, complete with nuance and heart effectively encourages and incites people to consider Vancouver Island as a retirement destination.
Who is responsible for gathering and publishing your stories?

7. A winning mindset finds ways to surprise and delight clients.
Delivering more value than you charge for is the obvious way to surprise and delight your clients. Making the process of doing business with you easy, interesting and productive is another definite way to delight. If we are talking business to business selling: you can refer a client's product or service to your other clients. You can take an active interest by bringing your clients unsolicited ideas for economizing and/or for promotion. Who is your customer ombudsman?

8. A winning mindset celebrates innovation and invention.
Celebrate the caring and experience of your people. "Necessity," says a Latin proverb, "is the mother of invention." Or, "Innovation," says W. Chan Kim of the World Economic Forum, "goes up when the economy goes down." Not just for now, but always – invite all the people who know you and care about you (or have a stake in your success) to share ideas for every facet of your organization. Look to innovate what you do, how you process, how you communicate, how you give and get feedback. Consider employees, suppliers, bankers, investors, clients, designers...
Who can map all of the relationships that you have and open forums for discussion?

9. A winning mindset demonstrates beliefs.
Who do you support? Local sports, research into a specific disease, Habitat For Humanity, visual arts or music, Kids Help Line... Understanding beliefs brings about positive conclusions; conclusions about you that are irreversible.  Intertwine your beliefs into your story and you will have added rich colour and texture to the story of you.
Who is tasked with this responsibility?

10 +1. A winning mindset takes risks. And a winning mindset shares who you are – really.
Tom S.L.: We all know the woman with the cape and the I’m wearing superman underwear button – or do we? We read her ideas every month in NEED TO KNOW. Who is she really? Nora answers: Most recently I was described as a painter, obsessive communicator, traveller, photographer, publisher.... It depends which day of the week it is. But here is something I do every day: I write, paint or photograph a story. I do this to hone my craft and to demonstrate just how powerful the storytelling medium is and because as an artist – that is my method of creation. We are working on projects that might just knock the collective US out of our chagrin so that when the sun sets on the new economy – those that have employed innovation and storytelling – will be ingratiated into the hearts and minds of their audiences.
Who is in charge of encouraging risk taking and digging deep for the authentic story of you?

Respect, value, authentic voice and relationship-building are rewarded.

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