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TEQ Productivity Corner February 2018

Thanks again to Scot MacTaggart @ Pitchwerks Podcast and the team at Epicast for a great podcast interview.  I invite you to listen.

I talk about business productivity, saving time & money and the commitment it takes to implementing CRM for your organization.

If you believe in the KISS principle check out the W5T FREE trial.  Like to meet for a coffee, give me a call @ m:412.498.3420.

A recent Op-ed in the WSJ entitled The Great Productivity Slowdown talks about how current economic productivity remains lackluster. What’s astonishing is the statement that US productivity growth has been in a free fall, for the last 7 years, since 2010. It’s hard to understand how this could be happening with all the technical advancements at our disposal. Northwestern University economist Robert Gordon suggests that innovation today is more incremental than transformative. The POV that “growth dividends from disruptive technology often require time before they are widely diffused and used” is true, especially when applied to CRM.

When we look at CRM implementation, this clearly appears to be the case. In our experience, it’s only the truly committed that know and appreciate how to make CRM work for them. While the technology has been available for years, a vast majority of businesses with CRM systems do not utilize them – at all. Paying lots of money, for a system that’s not being used, is not a good business practice.

What we hear most, is that it’s “management” or “big-brother” that wanted to put the CRM system in place, so they could track what we (sales) were doing. And while giving managers visibility to “the sales funnel” is important – what’s most important is how a CRM system can benefit the sales person:

Our top five benefits to the sales person:

  1. An easy way, to look up clients contact information; name, title, phone, email, physical addresses, web site all at your finger tips.
  2. A place to look up past customer notes, before walking into the next appointment.
  3. Never forgetting the gatekeeper’s name and b-day again; she/he can make or break the appointment.
  4. Ability to immediately capture customer meeting minutes, by dictating notes, directly to the customers’ contact record page.
  5. A central location to record mileage and business expenses.

The benefit for the sales person is – time saved. Instead of being able to complete 3 quality appointments a day, they can achieve 6 – a 50% increase. Rather than taking 5 minutes to find, locate and pull the client file, they spend less than 30 seconds accessing the information electronically – a 90% savings of time.

Using a CRM system, is not rocket science.  Applying the KISS (Keep it Super Simple) principle is the key.  If you have a CRM system, use it.  If you’re in the market for one – try ours to get started.  To achieve measurable productivity, you must change the way you’re currently doing things and act, otherwise things will stay the same.

Don’t Let it Get Away

How many times have you woken up at night with a solution to a problem you’ve been dealing with? Or you’re driving down the highway and a great idea “popped” into your head? How often have you been rinsing the shampoo out of your hair in the shower, and had an epiphany?

When we try to remember these ideas later, we just can’t get recall them with the same clarity or at all. And man oh man, is this frustrating.

Here are some simple solutions to capturing these ideas …

  • leave a pad of paper and a pen on your bed side table; don’t wake your significant other as they may not share your enthusiasm.
  • write in the steam on the bathroom mirror
  • voice dictate the idea into your smartphone
  • call the office and leave yourself a message
  • during waking hours share the thought with a friend
  • use a smart phone app, to capture the idea

Inspirational ideas come at all hours of the day and night. When they surface, take a minute to capture them.  You never know when that one idea will be “a winner”.

Familiarity breeds contentment

Why do some people like to write with a fountain pen?  For the same reason people like meatloaf and mashed potatoes on a cold night – comfort food. In today’s crowded world of computer software and web apps, new is good, but sometimes you just want what’s familiar. Too much new and different takes time to study, time to learn, time to try, which takes time away from working in your business.

What draws us to things that are retro?   Simplicity, is the driver.  We all like to see and use things that we we’ve had a positive experience with in the past. It makes us feel good and doesn’t take additional time and effort to change our behavior.

So as you start your week, consider working with something that fits the “retro” definition, if for no other reason than to make yourself feel good.


Ten steps to better focus on your customers and prospects:

  1. Make sure your master file of customer and prospect records is synced and current.
  2. Review your customer categories, status and priority settings; update to make more current and meaningful to the way you’re doing business today. Keep in mind, when organizing, less is more.
  3. Filter to show just active customers, and re-prioritize for Q2-Q4
  4. Delete lost customers from your system – when they’re gone, they’re gone
  5. Prioritize past customers for a follow up in Q2. This is a great time to re-connect!
  6. Filter to show just active prospects, and re-prioritize for Q2 – Q4
  7. Take a hard look at your prospects, weed out the dead wood and add in some new potentials.
  8. Sort the entire list by customers (active/past), and prospects (current/new)
  9. Set goals for the first 5 entries in each category
  10. Save your work, share the list with your colleagues and make things happen.

Average time to complete: 2 hours with no interruptions.   Payback: $$$$$

CRM spring cleaning is important. The end result will make you more focused and productive!

“I do the very best I know how – the very best I can; and I mean to keep on doing so until the end.”

Happy Presidents Day, everyone!

One of my favorite presidents has always been Abraham Lincoln. He’s a man that stuck to his guns and always seemed to have good things to say. But my favorite of his quotes is the one above

It’s always important to do your very best, in life and in business. This quote attests to that in many ways. Focus on what you know your strengths are and build off of them in all things.

So go out there! Keep on keeping on!


Today is Valentine’s Day! Typically it is used to show your love and appreciation for your significant other. But what if we were to flip that around a bit?

Use today not only to show how much you care to your husband or wife, but to your clients! Shoot them a message saying, “hey, thinking about ya, how can we help you out?” or “hope that things are going well with your business!”

But don’t forget to do this year-round–your attentiveness to your clients can make or break your relationship with them, just like with a loved one!

Don’t forget to check out our template and use it to keep track of who you’ve talked to!

Happy V-day!