Viddler’s History of Interactive Sales Training

Viddler’s History of Interactive Sales Training

In 2005, Viddler created interactive video technology that enabled children to really engage with video. When the video character asked “where’s my lunchbox?”, the child watching could click the video on the missing lunchbox and the character would say “thank you!” As the video continued to play, various interactions, assessments really, were presented the the child. “What did you have for breakfast?” the video character asked. The child could drag and drop their breakfast items, complete with audio shout outs, onto the breakfast plate: banana, milk, toast. Ten years later, Viddler is producing technology that promotes a workflow for interactive…read more >
In a World of Endless Options, Offer a Single Solution

In a World of Endless Options, Offer a Single Solution

You’ll find it on the sugary cereal aisle of your local supermarket. You’ll also find it on the toothpaste aisle, as you try to avoid the resulting cavities. In case you do get a cavity, you’ll also find that something as you search for a local dentist within 10 miles on Google. What am I talking about? As researcher Barry Schwartz calls it, that something is “choice overload,” or even “choice paralysis.” Choice overload describes a cognitive process in which people have a difficult time making a decision when faced with too many options. The resulting effects of choice overload…read more >
What does it really mean to find a career you love?

What does it really mean to find a career you love?

Valentine’s day is all about the people we love. But “love” is used in different ways. Penelope Trunk argues that “Finding a career you love” is bad career advice. If that’s true, then I’m among the guilty. A few years ago, a trip back my alma mater (to talk to students about my career) prompted me to write about my journey to finding a career I love. Penelope’s 2007 article, more recently referenced on The Muse, points out that some graduates end up putting too much pressure on themselves to find that perfect career—to find what they love. If you…read more >
DeVos Just Taught Us Something New: What Influences Decision-Making?

DeVos Just Taught Us Something New: What Influences Decision-Making?

Earlier this week in DC, the Senate’s voicemail system went down. As many as 1.5 million calls per day poured in, fiercely objecting the appointment of Betsy DeVos as our next Secretary of Education. As a company committed to creating technology that facilitates learning and training, we are taken aback by the decision. We reflected how this topic relates to a bigger picture than just public education. It made us think about what influences people when big decisions are made. By many accounts, the resounding disapproval and outrage over DeVos was due to her lack of qualification. Lacking any experience…read more >
Step-By-Step Sales Coaching by the Numbers

Step-By-Step Sales Coaching by the Numbers

To conclude this series on sales coaching, here’s a step-by-step guide for using a “Coaching by the Numbers” process to get each representative on your sales development team up to an optimal level of cold-calling success. STEP 1 — Get rigorous about creating a list of call dispositions that work for coaching. This is the only hard step. SImply stated, the recipe is to standardize a set of dispositions that tell you what happened in the conversation. Some managers and teams are tempted to throw in some dispositions that are really recommendations, or predictions, or a set of switches that…read more >
Lessons for Salespeople from “Groundhog Day”

Lessons for Salespeople from “Groundhog Day”

Today is February 2nd—a most peculiar American holiday. If you’re reading this with a feeling of déjà vu, then you may be thinking about Harold Ramis’ 1993 comedy, “Groundhog Day.” If you’re also a salesperson, then perhaps there’s something you can learn from the film. For the handful of those who haven’t seen the film, the Bill Murray character relives the same day over and over again—aware of everything that has happened each time. All those around him experience the day normally, while he’s trapped in an endless loop. If there’s a teachable moment in the film, it’s when Murray…read more >
What Salespeople Can Learn from a Legendary American All-Star

What Salespeople Can Learn from a Legendary American All-Star

Today is baseball legend Jackie Robinson’s birthday. You know the name—even if you’re not a sports buff. But what does Jackie and his legacy have to do with your success in your sales career? Let me recap, for those who have not seen the excellent 2013 movie, “42.” In 1947, Jackie broke through baseball’s color barrier, and earned rookie of the year for the Brooklyn Dodgers. In the same year, he lead the Dodgers to the National League championship, and six subsequent trips to the World Series. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962. His number…read more >
The Problem with KPIs in Coaching Your Sales Team

The Problem with KPIs in Coaching Your Sales Team

Part 3 of 4 In this series, we’ve spent a lot of time talking about call outcomes and call dispositions as ways to identify coaching milestones—who to coach and what to coach them on. There are in fact many common CRM dispositions that map directly and reliably onto coachable phases that every sales development conversation must go through. But there is a danger of oversimplification. Some of you might think I’m claiming that there is some sort of KPI (key performance indicator) that you can set and that you can use coaching to help every rep hit or exceed those…read more >
The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Professional Communications

The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Professional Communications

The concept of emotional intelligence is a relatively new one in psychology. Although the term first appeared in the mid-1960s, it wasn’t until Daniel Goldman’s 1995 book, Emotional Intelligence, that it became mainstream. We’ve been using it ever sense—to understand more about becoming successful. Turning to my own field, it turns out that being a successful salesperson has a lot more to do with one’s emotional intelligence quotient (Goldman’s “EQ”) than it does with IQ. When I think of emotional intelligence I think of a quote by Lao Tzu, the founder of Taoism: “Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is…read more >
Chipping Out of the Sales Sandtrap—By Mapping Call Dispositions

Chipping Out of the Sales Sandtrap—By Mapping Call Dispositions

Part Two of Four Conversations, like golf swings, come in distinct parts. For the golf swing, we have the setup; backswing; transition; downswing; impact; and follow-through. For sales development conversations, we have opening and agreement to engage; communicating value; offering the meeting; agreeing to the meeting (or not); and collaborating to set the meeting. Most teachers of the golf swing will tell you that the majority of bad swings start with a poor setup: that the golfer’s stance, posture, and grip on the club make it challenging to make a swing that will deliver the clubhead squarely onto the back…read more >