How to increase your sales

Too many “sales experts” have fuzzy theory and fuzzy results.

Here is a template that I have developed over time.  It works great.  Steal this template.  Call me for details if needed.


  1. Accountability is a hard task.  Most people hate it.  Most salespeople really hate it.  Most software, like Salesforce or Act or the latest app, is a pain to use.   You can use this excel spreadsheet, or a pad of paper.  Start now.
  2. Accountability determines success.  The three top words in sales are “relationships, relationships, relationships.”  Use the attached format to build relationships, be strategic, provide value.  Or not.
  3. These 4 roles determine sales:  champions, economic buyer, technical users, consumers.  You need all 4.  Complex sales evolve.  They only succeed when you focus on all 4 roles.
  4. All successful sales people have accountability metrics and teams.  Do you?

Call me at 704.895.6479 or contact us or subscribe today.

What is Action Learning?

Action Learning is a behavioral change process model that works 1) for groups and 2) for individuals.


For groups, Action Learning occurs when stakeholders use real problems to acquire learning and implement system-wide solutions.

For individuals, Action Learning is a behavioral coaching methodology that applies the same 4 steps.  


The Action Learning change process model includes four steps:

1) decide what breakthrough requires you to invest resources,

2) act with a talented, cross-functional team and executive endorsement,

3) reflect on steps achieved, and

4) connect or expand the results across business or functional lines, to new markets or clients.

We have facilitated organizational Action Learning change using both virtual and direct processes:


1. Technology processes: SharePoint, Action Item task lists, virtual teams, e-coaching and e-consulting, digital consulting and short implementation teams.

2: Direct meeting processes: assessments, facilitation in a series of workshops, coaching and consulting, project initiatives, leadership off-site retreats, strategic reorganization

For a summary of consulting fees and investment levels for organizations click here, and for individuals click here.  


Our Services typically include:

Assessments  (e.g. individual, group, organizational, strategic)

        Qualitative or Quantitative 360 assessments

        Organizational Culture Assessments

        Leadership competency assessments

Leadership consulting and behavioral coaching (e.g. individual, team or group levels)

Strategic planning and organizational redesign


Shadow Coaching

Facilitation, training, retreats or workshops


The result is that the Action Learning process helps individuals and groups become true learning organizations.

What are you waiting for?

Download this list of services and investment levels now:

Please contact us or call immediately at 704.995.6647 or schedule your initial consultation here.

What is leadership?

This could be a long discussion.  But I’d rather keep it short.


Leadership is influence.  Nothing more, nothing less.


The word “influence” implies results.  The influence may be slight or even negative.  The influence could be momentous.  The influence could be focused on relationships, such as the number of new people you meet each month, or the value you provide to others.  The influence could be focused on results, such as the number of new sales per quarter, or gross revenue per year, or goal attainment percentage.


If you need an academic definition of leadership, here is a current favorite:  Leadership is defined as the process of influencing others, and facilitating individual and collective efforts to accomplish shared objectives (Yukl, 2013).


Too many people confuse the words “leader” and “manager.”   So perhaps another definition is helpful.   Here is a distinction based on Marcus Buckingham’s research of the Gallup Poll data, plus interviews with thousands of people.


Leaders: by definition, rally others behind a vision of a better future.  The core skills of leaders are optimism and public.  Think of your self, or your favorite leader, on a stage, leaning forward, describing a better future.   They have influence.  Or not.  The capacity of leaders is infinite, based on research in positive psychology.


Managers: by definition, maximize the productivity of others.  The core skills of managers are coaching and private.  Think of your self when you need to make sure that others produce a result, such as increase a sale or host a remarkable executive retreat.  Note that the skills you use are different than the skills you use as a leader.  You will coach Shawn differently than you will coach Ellen.  No one likes to be managed. And no one boasts about being a manager.  But when I ask an audience “How many of you are managers?” over 60% will raise their hands.  Virtually all managers are now “working managers” tasked with both maximizing productivity and getting the work done.


However, everyone wants to be a better leader.


A key coaching question is:  What influence are you having on others?

Call Doug at 704.995.6647 today if you want to have a greater influence on your self or your team.

Or schedule your initial consultation here.


What are you waiting for?

Download this list of services and investment levels now:

How can I lead my self?

Many people ask me this question.  So you are not alone.  In fact, self-leadership is an ancient subject turned into a multi-billion dollar industry.  It is MUCH harder to lead my self than it is to lead others.  And it requires daily deliberate practice for me to lead my self.


My purpose in life is to teach others how to be better leaders.  I know what works.  Hopefully the following two steps will be useful to you.


There are two ways to lead your self:

1.  self awareness

2.  self care


Self awareness requires core skills such as openness, self appraisal, clarity, self esteem.  There is a massive amount of research in psychology and organizational development on the subject of self awareness.  There are countless religions and faiths and daily practices on the subject of self awareness.  Amid these conflicting and spurious theories there is a need for clarity.  We use assessments to provide data.  There are over 15,000 validated assessments.  We can provide assessments for any individual behavior or competency imaginable.  Evidence-based consulting is mandatory in any profession, from law to healthcare to psychology.


A key coaching question is “What assessments do I need to increase my self awareness?’

Self care requires core skills such as expression, sustainability, resourcefulness, action.  Consider the fact that humans now have more digital information available than EVER in the history of mankind.  We now KNOW what we should do.  However, we do not always DO what we should do.  Imagine a grandmotherly person.  She towers over you with an apron and shakes a wooden spoon… as she tells you what you should do.  That image of a wise, older person may help you.

A key coaching question is “How can I take care of myself today?”


One more point.  There is a myth that leadership is a personal act.  By definition, the word “leadership” means influence at two levels:  on my self and others.  The goal of self leadership is not to attain some mystical state in isolation on a mountain.  Humans are defined by relationships.  No one develops as a leader when living in isolation.  And too many people spend hours alone, writing in journals, or focusing on their weaknesses.  When Maslow described self actualization it was not thought to be a resting place.  The goal is to improve the quality of relationships with others.  Leadership is both a personal act and a team act.  We adopt evidence-based research in positive psychology because it works.  We want YOU to flourish.


The goal of self leadership is to have a greater relationships with my self and others.


We all need a coach at times.  Call me at 704.995.6647 or subscribe now or schedule your initial consultation here.


What are you waiting for?

Download this list of services and investment levels now:

How can I sell more to existing customers?

I do not know the answer for you. Yet.  And it would be presumptuous or disingenuous if I offered a trite response.


Instead I will give you some facts. Then the process. Then what I do know.


Many studies confirm that your cost of good sold (COGS) is 7x higher for a new customer than for a returning customer.  So you should focus on providing new value to old customers.


There is a former client who comes to mind.  He happened to be a 30 year old financial advisor.  But the story is relevant for most of us in specialized fields.  He wanted to grow his business. After 3 years he had exhausted leads from his friends and family.  He had networked so often that people avoided him at chamber and business development groups and even at Rotary meetings.  I asked him, “What kinds of clients do you want to serve?”  and “Who is likely to retire in 10 years with a strong book of business that needs to sell the bottom portion to a younger professional like yourself?”  and “How can you guarantee that you provide excellent service to that older partner or lead source?”  As you can imagine, he had a new partner and provided tremendous value for that person’s clients for many years.  However, his answer is not your answer.


I do know the answer for hundreds of other business leaders who are former clients. Since 1997 I have consulted and coached business leaders in manufacturing, health care, education, HR, safety, technology, finance and accounting. I have guaranteed results for clients ranging from executive teams at F500 companies to small business owners struggling to make ends meet. I can provide best-of-class solutions or referrals to other consultants who can likely help you solve your problems.


I do know the process.  I do know what works.


Here you go:  you need to 1) define the problems, 2) provide solutions, 3) model accountability.  I call this the “3A Coaching process.


These “A letter” words are Assessments, Constructive Actions, and Accountability.  Too many  “coaches” stop after providing assessments, or constructive actions, because they do not know how to provide individual or team accountability.  That’s about as smart as running 2/3 of a marathon and stopping.  Make sure that you hire a coach who will get you past your finish line goals.


You are probably struggling with the following challenges:

people challenges
strategy challenges
execution challenges
cash and financial challenges


Typically, I define the problems using organizational and individual assessments. I determine where you are making money. And where you are losing money.


I may ask the three big questions: 1. can you define the problem? 2. do you need to solve that problem? 3. who can solve that problem? In today’s market, the buyer-seller dance has evolved into a transparent process of answering those 3 questions. Then adopting the best solution. Vendors are secondary.


Then I provide a host of best-in-class solutions for you to sell more to your existing customers. They already know you. They are inclined to purchase more products and services.


Then I model accountability so that you move beyond good intentions. I want you to sell more services.


Ready to talk? Call us soon at 704.995.6647 or contact us here.  Once we determine your needs, then we can define a more specific answer to this question.  Schedule your initial consultation here.


We all need to sell more to our existing clients.


What are you waiting for?

Download this list of services and investment levels now: