Inman Article – 10 Requirements for any Team to Remain Profitable
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DescriptionOur recent Inman article, 10 requirements for any team to remain profitable, was featured as the lead article in Inman's latest team newsletter. When Inman launched a new team oriented publication, they reached out to us for a commitment to be a media contributor a consistent stream of anchor content. Here's the text of the article. ***
We will return to a business when we get what we expect. We refer businesses when we get more than we expected.If built correctly, your business should allow for enough profit to exceed your needs, consistency to let you take meaningful time off and a salable exit strategy when you are ready to exercise it. Success rises and falls on your team’s ability to generate income. To remain profitable as a team, keep these 10 things in mind.
1. Client Benefits.Each member of your team and your clients must clearly understand the benefits that your services provide. What are five benefits of working with you versus anyone else in your market place? Can every person on your team communicate that clearly? Remember, consumers buy benefits.
2. Extra Value.Clients must feel like they receive more in value than you charge for your services. Most of us don’t want a “fair” exchange; we want a deal, the sense that we got extra value for our money. Referrals are won and lost on this point. We will return to a business when we get what we expect. We refer businesses when we get more than we expected.
3. Superb Service.This means attention to detail. The higher your price point, the more people expect. The details matter more than you can possibly imagine. Is this a hallmark for your team?
4. Know your Audience.Each person on the team has their own audience. The natural layering is what allows teams to work the same geography successfully. If you want a free playbook on how to help each person on your team define and reach their unique audience, shoot us a message.
5. Location.In the old days, this meant the street address of your shop or store. Now it means getting your marketing messages into your customer’s hands when and where they are receptive. Who you are reaching, what you are saying and which channel, social or otherwise, are critical in the omni-channeled marketing world we live in.
6. Production.Profitability on a team inevitably comes down to population and production. How many people do you have and how many transactions do each of them do. Create a culture of production where everyone is expected to contribute.
7. Innovation.If you aren’t telling your clients about how you use emerging technology in your business, you are missing the boat. If you aren’t aware of emerging technologies, you are actively ignoring your customers. And soon, you will find they are taking the trip across the water with someone else.
8. Competence.Consumers assume they can rely on your services. If they are purchasing your time and expertise, they rely on your availability, your advice, your attention to detail and your follow-through. For your clients, perfect is the expectation and everyone on your team is held to that standard.
9. Planning.Planning is the ability to monitor, influence and profit from change. Planning means having a mission statement and the flexibility to respond instantly when new information allows you to fulfill your mission more effectively. Planning means you control your destiny.
10. Communication.This means instant, two-way communication between every level and every branch of an enterprise. It means communicating with your vendors and competitors and working with your clients so they become your most important designers, researchers and customer service experts. It means an “open door” policy and flat organizational models. It means listening is more important than speaking. You are going to take the time and energy to build your team. You might as well start with the end in mind. Build your team correctly and with purpose, so it allows for enough profit to exceed your needs, has the consistency to allow for you to take meaningful time off and offers a salable exit strategy when you are ready to exercise it.
Chris Pollinger, partner, Berman & Pollinger, LLC is a senior sales and operational executive skilled in strategic leadership, culture building, business planning, sales, marketing, acquisitions, operations, recruiting, and team building.
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