Reasons Why A Well-Planned Sales Strategy Guarantee Business Success

Planning and creating strategies are necessary for any business. In fact, creating good plans for sales and marketing are assets that can contribute to the value of your company. But the aspects you take into consideration, and that go into planning, are as important and will to a large measure determine how effective your plan will be.

Here are the things that you should be aware of and take into consideration when you make a sales strategy for your company so that it does not cause your business to weaken, and increases sales tremendously.

Make Sure Your Sales Strategy is Backed by Facts

Too often, companies create sales strategies that are based on hope s and dreams. They have ideas about how big the market is for your products and services, and the amount of effort it will take to gain customers, many of whom must be wrested away from competitors. Using accurate assumptions in your sales strategy helps you to accurately manage your resources and your company’s expectations as well. Make sure that any assumptions you utilise are verified and backed with factual information. If there is any doubt, check things again. 

Pay Attention to the Current Environment

Is your business area growing, shrinking or remaining steady? Each situation will call for a different approach to sales. You should be sure of the status of the marketplace and also take into account the overall business environment, and this data should be included in your sales strategy.

Put the Right Sales Team Together

Your sales team is the point of contact with your clients in terms of getting them to buy your products or services. Make sure that they represent you well and are dedicated to making your business successful. Do not settle for the group you have simply because you employ them.

Whoever you have on staff should be the person you would pick and any conditions. If you do not have faith in them you will always second guess their decisions and abilities. This will cause your company to miss its goals and give you way too much extra work trying to manage them. So if needed, rebuild your sales team with the right people.

Provide Continuous Encouragement

Salespeople are generally Type A personalities who need constant reinforcement and emotional support. Give them good salaries and perks like the best health insurance and good bonuses. You should work closely with them, so they see that you are there and to understand when any of them is feeling down. Also ask their input on the sales strategy and allow them to provide input. If you create the right environment around their input and give them bonuses when they are right, what they say will likely increase sales.

Make a Full Commitment

When you decide to move on your sales strategy, you should go at it aggressively. To do this, you must have the right team, and the resources required. If you cannot execute on the sales strategy as planned for any reason, rethink the plan. Making a half-hearted effort will not only cause failure, it will also demoralise your team. Instead create a strategy and plan that your team can win with and make sure they have the tools to get it done.

Be Prepared to Make Adjustments Fast

Even great sales strategies need fine-tuning, and you should expect that large portions of your plan might need to be modified or scrapped once it is put in practice. Rather than continuing to try and make something unworkable, work, make quick adjustments that ring better results. The faster you do this, the less momentum and enthusiasm you will lose with your sales staff.

Your plan can be great, but if you do not do all of the other things relating to implementing your great plan, sales will suffer. So take the time to do everything needed to get your sales flying. 

4 lessons from the Navy SEALs for a better life

The U.S. Navy SEALs are one of the world’s most elite special forces units. Oftentimes, the SEALs are tasked with executing the most difficult missions in some of the most challenging conditions all around the world. The acronym for SEAL actually stands for United States Navy Sea, Air, and Land Team.

Thus, whether you’re looking to join the world’s toughest special forces unit or just trying to get a leg-up in life, here are some things that we can learn from the Navy SEALs.

1. Make your bed everyday

During the 2014 University of Texas commencement, Admiral William H. McRaven; SEAL and ninth commander of the U.S Special Forces had this brilliant piece of advice to give; make your bed every day.

This is a deceptively simple habit that has been ingrained in soldiers all over the world. As part of their morning routine, soldiers are required to make their beds. Doing so instills a sense of discipline in yourself while also helping you achieve the first task of the day.

From here, you’ll be able to gain the momentum to continue throughout the day. Whether it’s meeting clients or showing up for work on time, making your bed sets the standard for the rest of the day. Also, if you’ve had a particularly bad day, coming home to a neat and well-made bed can be a source of comfort.

2. Build up your mental strength

For those brave enough to attempt it, BUDs or Basic Underwater Demolitions Training lasts about 24 weeks where candidates undergo some of the most grueling tests imaginable. From sleep deprivation to brutal water competency tests in freezing water, less than 30% of candidates attending training pass selection. 

With such an intense training regime and a nigh-on impossible selection, there should be no doubt that SEALs are some of the toughest soldiers in the world. Successful candidates have stated that mental fortitude and tenacity have gotten them through BUDs training.

While the outside world may not be as brutal as BUDs training, being able to face up to mental hardship and challenges are essential if you want to live a happy, sustainable life. Athletes in top ranks of football odds have also to endure similar tests, that make the body and mental resistance to maximum.

In life, there will definitely be times when you feel down and out. Whether you’re stuck in a dead-end job or things just can’t seem to work out, all you have to do is to persevere and keep on going. At the end of the day, your success is determined only by you and you alone.

3. Recognize failure as a part of life

As anyone who’s ever been in the military will tell you, uniform inspections are a part of life and failing an inspection will likely result in punishment. This is no different during BUDs and candidates who fail uniform inspection are ordered into the freezing ocean to get good and wet. 

After that, they will be forced to roll around on the beach until they’re covered from head-to-toe in fine white sand i.e. resembling a sugar cookie. In his speech, U.S Admiral William McRaven states that “some days, no matter how much you prepare, you’ll just end up a sugar cookie”.

He uses this to illustrate the fact that sometimes failure is just a part of life. Even if you’ve done your best and give it your all, failure is unavoidable. Stand up, clean yourself up and keep on moving forward because that’s just how life is. When we accept failure as a part of life, we’re that much more ready to deal with setbacks. 

4. Never ever give up – don’t ring the bell

The previous 3 points have built up to this; never giving up even in the face of impossible odds. Throughout SEAL training, candidates are actively encouraged by their instructors to throw in the towel and quit the course. When a candidate quits, he has to ring a brass bell in the middle of the compound.

Given the harsh training conditions, it’s no surprise that nearly 80% of candidates drop out from the course or fail. Instructors intentionally make quitting easy in order to weed out candidates who lack the mental toughness to become SEALs.

Those who remain until the end are usually running on sheer willpower alone. This illustrates how only through perseverance and persistence are we able to achieve our dreams. Giving up may be easy but it also prevents us from reaching our goals.

While you may not be parachuting onto the battlefield or infiltrating deep behind enemy lines, the lessons imparted by the Navy SEALs can also be brought in the real world. Discipline, tenacity and courage will help you succeed in life.

This post was written by Benjamin Lee.

Things to Save For

Most adults are commonly concerned about their expenses and budgets. Money is a big topic in most marriages and households. Why is this the case? For starters, you and your family need money to survive, so it is a major responsibility to take on. If you have children, they rely on you for their existence and everyday living. Again, this is a major task. It is a responsible thing to do to be proactive and save your money as much as possible. Save money for known and upcoming expenses as well as the possibility of unforeseen sudden expenses that may be thrown at you and your family. Below is a list of things you should save for.

Unexpected Expenses

Life can throw curveballs, so you need to save for these sorts of events. Things can happen with your home that you may not expect. Repairs such as a leaking roof, sewer problems, plumbing issues, air conditioning or heating repairs, gas leaks, appliance replacement are all examples of things that could come up unexpectedly but are also inevitable for all homeowners. Same thing goes for car owners, cars come with financial baggage. You could come upon repairs that can cost a pretty penny. If you get in an accident than you will need to remedy the situation. These are two large areas of concern but things like legal fees, parking tickets and driving violations, health expenses and emergency room visits are all things that could come your way that could cost a lot and should be planned for.

Savings

Every family saves for the unexpected as well as the expected. Every adult needs to save for their retirement. This can be done many ways through various financial instruments like 401k, brokerage accounts and general savings accounts.  If you have a job with a business, you most likely are given the option to contribute to your 401k directly out of your paycheck which makes it easier. Besides retirement, you need to think about education expenses for either yourself or your children. If you would like to continue education that can be costly so would require savings. If you have children, they will most like go to college or maybe even an accredited high school that would need to be saved for. Besides these two responsible savings topics, you may also want to save for family fun. Things like vacations or events could be saved for so you can enjoy them.

Bottom line is that you need to think about money and make sure you have your bases covered in the event these things come your way.

How to Budget Around Essential Expenses

Even for experienced professionals, forming a budget can be difficult. Indeed, determining how best to save money and avoid unnecessary costs is something that nearly everyone struggles with from time to time. Unfortunately, some people make the mistake of forgoing essential expenses when creating a personal budget and face terrible consequences as a result. Though it may be difficult, it is possible to form a working budget that accommodates everything a person needs to live a happy, healthy life. Here are a few tips you can use to accomplish this for yourself:

Define “Essential”

These days, many people don’t know how to separate things that they want from things that they need. While it’s not easy to pass up fun products like fancy air fresheners or novelty coffee mugs, the reality is that if you’re working on a tight budget, you can’t afford to spend capital on frivolous items.

On the other hand, it’s also important not to go over-the-top and to cut out a service or product you truly need. Some of those expenses –– such as ones related to living arrangements or food –– are obvious. However other essential services, like medical costs or health insurance, may seem less necessary when a person faces financial trouble. Skipping trips to the doctor’s or forgoing certain important preventative tests, though, could leave you vulnerable to a number of potentially dangerous health conditions like STDs. (You can visit samedaystdtesting.com for more information on this subject.)

It may take some time, but making these tough calls and setting the parameters of a budget now will save you time and money moving forward.

Eschew Name Brands

Groceries, prescription drugs, clothes –– these are indisputably essential items. However, smart budgeters can manage their expenses more effectively by avoiding “name brands” that come at a premium. Don’t be afraid to sacrifice style for substance in this regard.

Pick up a Side Hustle

If you’ve got free time, then you have a myriad of options to supplement your income. Signing up for a rideshare service, taking surveys for cash, –– even walking neighborhood dogs can help you earn extra cash quickly

Look for Long-Term Value

Essential expenses aren’t likely to go away with time. After all, people will always need somewhere to stay, food to eat, etc. Capable budgeters can use this knowledge to their advantage, though. For instance, it’s often possible to apply for a mortgage on a home purchase that actually costs less than the rental payments of an equivalent property. Finding opportunities to exploit long-term value can help you get out of debt and make budgeting easier with time.

Important Facts About Land Erosion and How to Prevent It

Land erosion is a naturally occurring process involving natural elements such as water, ice, wind, and gravity that end up removing the fertilized soil on the upper surface of the earth exposing the rocks.

Thankfully, there are a number of ways to not only identify signs of land erosion but also prevent it from happening using methods such as an erosion control blanket. Below is some useful information you might want to know about this natural phenomenon:

What Areas Are Most Likely to Be Affected by Land Erosion?

There are quite a number of places that are most affected by land erosion. It is, therefore, a great idea for you to be knowledgeable about the subject so that you can know the right way to protect your soil from losing its fertility by means of rigorous erosion. The first place most affected by erosion is the valleys or slopes.

This is because of two things – gravity and rainwater. The same also goes with areas along rivers. This happens because of the constant rush of water which will, in the long run, loosen the soil around the banks and will result in massive erosion.

You’ll also realize that areas with aggressive winds, as well as snow, will be most affected by land erosion. This applies to areas known for constant snowing since ice has the same effects as water. That said, it’s important for you to note these areas and find the best ways to eliminate the issues effectively.

What Are the Courses of Land Erosion?

There are quite a number of causes of land erosion, one of them being poor farming practices. Farmers who are always tilling land near river banks or valleys are strongly advised against tilling near the edges as it encourages land erosion due to running water as well as gravity.

As mentioned before snowing and wild winds can be incredible sources of land erosion. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways one can reduce these elements from damaging the soil as we shall discuss below. Another rather notorious cause of land erosion is deforestation.

Trees play a very important role when it comes to curbing land erosion thanks to their roots that hold the soil firmly together. They also can break the speed of the water as well as winds. That means cutting down the trees will end up doing more harm than good.

Curbing Land Erosion and Conserving Natural Resources

The first effective way to stop land erosion is by planting trees, as well as grass, on the areas most affected. Doing so will prevent erosion from happing since the cover and the roots will end up consolidating the soil together thus preventing the water from collecting it all downstream. Farmers can also stop cultivating land on sloppy areas as well as near riverbanks. This way, they won’t have to worry much about the silt running down with the water and depleting the natural resources in the soil. You can also use an erosion curbing blanket which will protect the soil from the adverse effects of erosion. These blankets will keep the topsoil intact while the seedlings are taking root and protecting them at all times.

You can also reduce the dire effects of land erosion by adding more rocks or mulch in and around the edges of your farm. Mulch and rocks also happen to be very efficient absorbers of water and will reduce the speed of running water which will, in turn, spare the topsoil from being washed away and the natural resources with it.

Land erosion, if not put in check, can lead to a lot of unfortunate circumstances. For starters, the land will lose all of its fertility and there is also a likelihood of accidents occurring in the form of landslides or mudslides. Thankfully, following any of the above-mentioned methods can end up saving you a lot of problems by simply putting a stop to erosion altogether.

There is no shame in asking for help when it comes to curbing soil or land erosion. Thankfully, there are specialists out there who will be more than willing to be of assistance. That said, feel free to use the Internet to find much-needed assistance before the situation gets worse.

The Financial Impacts on Families Due to Government Shutdown

The United States is currently going through the longest government shutdown in its history. Partial government shutdown or full government shutdown, it doesn’t matter. The pain of the unpaid government workers, laid-off associated contractors, and numerous businesses that either supply the government, depend on government workers for its business or have any kind of interaction with the government are experiencing great pains.

This is not a red pain or blue pain. Instead, it’s a green pain because the economic impact puts a strain on personal bank accounts regardless of personal politics. Although government agencies have published some seemingly tone-deaf tips about how their workers can survive this shutdown, they’ve mostly fallen flat. They don’t account for the fact that most families affected by the shutdown are those who get personal loans for bad credit to pay the bills. Garage sales and mystery shopper gigs aren’t going to get the job done.

Friday, January 11, 2019, was the first day government workers missed a paycheck. That means that those financially hurt by the government shutdown are starting to see even more magnified effects on their personal finances. Many workers who have to still work during the shutdown got a pay stub that said their normal hours worked but $0.00 for pay. While the government may have itself on ‘pause,’ one’s bills, creditors and grocery needs are ever constant and far from being patient during this stoppage.

The immediate and measurable need of cash creates financial instability for those impacted by the shutdown. Some people’s homes will move into delinquency and/or foreclosure. People’s credit ratings will be impacted because of their inability to meet their monthly payments. News has promoted stories of individuals unable to get proper health care or medicine. All of these scenarios will have long term impacts, ranging far beyond whenever the government does open back up for business.

What to Do in Order to Survive the Shutdown

The following offers a few tips of things that you can do to help survive this shut down:

  • Consider borrowing money to pay bills until the shutdown ends (including from friends, family, your retirement savings, loans, and credit cards);
  • Contact your creditors in order to see if they offer any special assistance as someone impacted by the government shutdown;
  • File for unemployment, if eligible, so that at least a portion of your normal pay will be made available to you;
  • Some employees have even started GoFundMe pages in order to seek assistance from the general public; and
  • Contact your local elected officials to voice your concern and personal situation so that they can advocate on your behalf.

Avoiding bankruptcy is a key to these steps so that you’re not penalized for the actions of the government in your personal life. Avoiding bankruptcy outside of a government shutdown can usually be helped by visiting with a credit counseling agency, so that is something that you might want to do now as well.

Although this government shutdown is the longest ever, the shutdowns are happening more frequently than ever before. Thus, there is a good possibility that you might be in this situation all over again sometime in the near future. Whether it’s a delay on receiving your tax refund or being able to go to court, the shutdowns are like a pebble in a pond and the ripples will expand far beyond where the pebble hit the water.

Shopping Around in the Digital Age

We all love a bargain and, thanks to the internet, there’s usually always a host of deals to be had somewhere, all just the click of a mouse button away. What’s more, ease of browsing through search engines allows us to find multiple locations to buy exactly what we want, quicker than it’ll take you to read this article.

Focus on the Time of Year

Convenience and reputation often tend to attract the most custom, along with a vast range of diverse products, which is undoubtedly why the leading internet shopping sites in 2018 were Amazon, eBay and Walmart. However, just because they’re the biggest and most famous, offering a one-stop-shop for practically everything you could want, doesn’t necessarily mean they’re better than other online stores.

Any savvy shopper will always make a point of comparing prices between stores as a matter of principle and, sometimes, the bigger name stores can offer some of the best prices and discounts. However, price shouldn’t always be the deciding factor when buying something online, given there are lots of other factors one should perhaps consider when deciding what constitutes a good deal.

Image Source: @knowledge_18 via Twitter

One interesting approach is to plan for the year ahead, given that certain products can fluctuate greatly in price depending on the season or month of the year. We’re all familiar with Black Friday in November, although, it might not always be the best time for a good deal. For example, if you’re shopping for home decor and furnishings, big-box stores frequently offer some of their best deals around Memorial Day in May. Likewise, a good time to buy home appliances can be September and the week leading up to Labor Day, with many retailers offering great clearance deals.

Articles of clothing are also affected by the seasons, as brick-and-mortar stores and online retailers alike rotate their inventories. If you’re looking for a bikini for the summer holidays or some garden furniture, then you’ll usually pay more for them when demand is highest, from June through August. Buy them during the springtime with early deals or, even better, wait until autumn and think of the following year, when retailers want to clear their stock at knockdown prices.

Smarter Gambling

While it’s fair to say that online gambling might not be considered the most financially sustainable pastime, it’s a popular pursuit that many of us do still enjoy. Indeed, placing bets and playing casino games via the internet has become so popular that the global online market is expected to generate revenues in excess of $74 billion by 2023 according to marketwatch.com reports, with the online gambling industry growing consistently by around 10% year on year since 2017.

Along with traditional table games such as poker, blackjack and roulette, amongst the most popular are the slots games and they can be promoted in a variety of different ways. While some casinos offer deposit bonus deals, crediting new user accounts with a free cash bonus based upon the first amount they deposit, others offer free spins for their slots, without the need to place an initial deposit after signing up.

Image Source: @gBitcoincasino via via Twitter

Getting something for nothing may seem too good to be true but Oddschecker has compared and listed online casino deals, highlighting those with free spin no deposit offers, how they can be used and how such offers vary from casino to casino. For example, some of the free spins are limited to very small stakes, must be used in one particular slot game, or used by a certain date; although it is possible to play without spending a single cent.

Nevertheless, always read the terms and conditions carefully, so you know exactly what you’re signing up for. Shop around to find the best offer that suits the way you play and for the kind of games you enjoy playing, whether it’s free spins or cash bonus, when opening a new account. Likewise, never deposit more than you can afford and are willing to lose, because while the chance of winning is always enticing, and the games can be great fun, it’s always sensible to set yourself a limit and stick with it.

Digital vs Traditional Purchases

Remember when video games, computer software and movies came in a box? Well, the internet and faster-than-ever connection speeds have forever changed how we consume digital products. Back in the old days, we went to a retailer and got a physical product in a box, something we could hold in our hands, usually with a neatly printed and detailed instruction manual, and perhaps even some other gimmicks such as collectibles or accessories thrown in.

These days, few want DVD cases, software or game boxes cluttering up their homes, aside perhaps from the most ardent collectors. True, doing away with needless packaging removes the environmental footprint left by the plastic and paper waste. However, one would assume that might also mean a reduction in price given there’s no packaging required, though if you’ll forgive the pun, it isn’t always the case.

Image Source: @pcgamer via Twitter

Many movie, game and software prices have actually risen, instead of falling, with online retailers and publishers citing the increased cost of servers to host the library of their products, or bandwidth needed to meet the volume of download demands. The main convenience for the buyer is they can get what they want “on demand” pretty much instantly, downloading their product whenever they want, without the need to leave the comfort of their home and visit a traditional retail store.

Yet, many video games, software and movies can still be purchased at traditional retail stores, in boxes and on disc, cheaper than their digital download equivalent. That would appear to defy all logic but nonetheless, it’s still true for even some of the latest releases. For now, that is, because the future points towards more digital downloads, online streaming, and even software as a service, requiring a subscription rather than a one-off purchase. The option of buying boxed products cheaper is looking like it’ll head the way of the dinosaurs in the next few years, so grab your bargains while you can.

Whether it’s shopping around for physical products, making digital purchases or gambling online, shopping around is just as important as it was when we used to walk down Main Street, peering through store windows at the offers and sales. As ever, keep browsing and don’t plump for the first deal you see, as there could well be a better on just around the corner.