Author: Linda Dippenaar

I still savor Jim Collins’ sage advice: “First, put the right people on the bus. Then, get the wrong people off the bus and get the right people into the right seats. Then you can drive the bus anywhere.”To get the growth you’re charting and envision in your strategic growth plan, one of the “right people” needed on your business bus is a competent sales manager and leader. A sales leader who – gets it, wants, it and has the capacity to do it.So, what are the components of “it”?

Alan, CEO of engineering firm, says, “Danita, I’m feeling very frustrated!  The pipeline looks great, but the sales cycles are so incredibly long. I need to see business this year, not in three years! Is there any way of shortening the process to get the business sooner, rather than later?”Alan is one of the business CEO’s and sales leaders I work with who want to increase the capabilities of their sales teams so that they can consistently meet and exceed their strategic growth objectives.Many salespeople don’t even realize why deals are languishing in the pipeline and they have such difficulty cracking new accounts. Why? They keep doing the same old thing year after year.What do they need to do differently to shorten the sales cycle?


While on my recent motorcycle trip through Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, I took a day off to start reading, The Respect Effect: Using the Science of Neuro leadership to Inspire a More Loyal and Productive Workplace. This grasped my attention:“The best leaders are the ones who motivate employees to want to perform at the highest level possible – which is never accomplished with an iron-fist style of management. The best results are achieved through one of the most basic human behaviors: the showing of respect.”I hold the same viewpoint. In fact, I cover the topic in my upcoming book: Millennial Matters: Proven Strategies for Building Your Next Gen Leader that’s due on bookshelves in Nov. Plus, it affirmed the focus of our recent blog series.