Practice (alone) does not make perfect

Like all walks of life – work, sport, school – if you are practicing the wrong things, or the wrong way of doing something, you are simply repeating your errors over and over – frustrating and clearly limiting your success.

So how do you stay on track with the right things to practice? Clearly a good start point is to exercise good self discipline. This is the foundation for any personal development. Thinking that the issue is “not my fault” and the issue is caused by something “out there somewhere” is a sure fire way to have reduced control of your life. The first step therefore is to take control of yourself and your discipline including your thoughts and “self-talk”. Be sure to catch yourself talking positively with a “can do” attitude, and stop the cannot do and self limiting speak.
Finding a good coach is a smart step too – whether this is within your current role or an objective outsider. A good coach understands that as an individual, you already have all the necessary resources available to you, but they are the difference, that makes the difference.
For example, if I’m playing golf and struggling to get the results I desire, it probably makes sense to have a coach watch what I do in order to help reflect the areas for improvement – I recall this very real example where the golf pro explained to me (after watching me for a while) that he saw the problem with my game. He noted that I was trying to hit the ball…. Seemed initially to be a ridiculous comment…on closer inspection however, he was absolutely right. He went on to explain to me that if I swing the club, the club will hit the ball…. He moved my focus away from my desire to knock the ball into next week (and missing badly), into simply swinging the club accurately and all would work out.. On this occasion, I saw an instant improvement, but of course, the challenge is to keep making those improvements regularly and being consistent. This is something that your coach can bring to your performance.
This same coaching approach will produce a similar effect in sales. The challenge is that many sales managers and business owners are not well equipped to fulfill his role, so your best option is to find an external coach and develop the right habits.

Sorry, I can’t hear you….

I daresay, we’ve all experienced the issues that traditional meeting room audio presents. You can’t always be heard by the remote parties and so the meetings become somewhat dysfunctional.

The traditional meeting room consists of a television screen, a camera, and an audio device. The latter generally offers a very directional capability – fine if you’re all able to huddle around it. Increasingly however, as we collaborate and need to share information, sitting mannequin-like around a table just doesn’t cut it.

So the answer lies in innovative audio technology from Nureva.

The solution is to ensure that there are more microphones in the meeting space. Nureva manage this with their “microphone mist” technology, which uses software to flood the meeting space with virtual microphones. This clever technology self-calibrates and delivers 8192 virtual microphones ensuring that the meeting participants within the meeting room can be heard by the remote parties wherever they move within the room.

This technology is set to revolutionise the meeting experience for remote parties, and productivity is set to soar.

The great news for those who want to”hear it for themselves” is that they can do so without ever leaving their office chair.

Ask me how

Transformation – things have changed

Digital transformation means many different things to different people and there is a glut of offerings in the market currently that promise you a life of luxury if you take their latest solution for your transformation journey. One of the most impactful solutions that I have witnessed is one I will write about here; It’s from a vendor called Nureva and is available exclusively here in the UK from distributor Ascentae.

Nureva Span is a cloud-based software (and hardware) solution – simply a licence that enables collaboration on any device anywhere you can connect to the internet.

So what?

Well this is the really cool part (as if that wasn’t already cool enough) – Span is a virtual canvas – a virtual white board that allows users from wherever they are, to write, draw, or place virtual Post-IT™ notes onto the virtual board. Share desktop content, add comments with virtual INK, and even follow other users who are leading a discussion – so you are quite literally ALL ON THE SAME PAGE. All users connected to the “canvas” see all of added content and contributions, as you would if you were all in the same office sticking physical notes onto a physical wall and writing comments with a marker pen.

Because this is a virtual canvas, there is no issue with Post-IT™ notes falling off the wall, or the issue that many security conscious business experience, in that the physical office with the physical Post-IT™ notes must be secured when empty and cannot be accessed….. With Span, you simply close the canvas and it is secure.

Take this to another level, and SPAN can be used on physical touch screen panels – multiple panels connected in software to provide a scrolling wall covering of virtual canvas. Huge real-estate for collaborators to work together on, in the same location, joined by remote participants in other locations with similar hardware components, or sat on a lounger connected via Wi-Fi or 4G on an iPad or similar device…..

This opens so many possibilities for commercial enterprises as well as for education – imagine a collaboration session finishing without the need to take your smartphone and take photos of the walls for some poor sole to spend several hours deciphering and writing up to share amongst the collaborators – That is digital transformation

Interested to learn more or perhaps have a demonstration – then drop me a note and I’ll be happy to arrange

Trust Strike Ascentae Deal

Creative Workspace SolutionsTrust Business Partners has announced a new contract with Ascentae to support growth into the UC VAR space. Trust will provide business consulting services to support the growth strategy of Ascentae, a fledgling UK distributor of AV equipment and services.

David Pitts and Graham Bunting will be working with Jon Knight of Ascentae to promote CREATIVE WORKPLACE SOLUTIONS as a key differentiator for UC VAR’s to sell more to their existing customers and make them stickier.

It’s a debate that many businesses face as they ponder the possibilities of digital transformation. How can the benefits of greater collaboration be embraced without losing all paper-based processes? The business value of improving collaborative opportunities may be obvious, however, there seems to be a degree of apprehension when it comes to transferring to digital. One major barrier to change is workplace culture and the reluctance to introduce new technology for fear of disrupting tried and tested processes. Organisations want to take small steps towards a new working world rather than a giant leap to overhaul existing practices.

Ascentae’s exclusive distribution agreements include the Nureva HDL300 Audio conferencing technology. At the heart of the HDL300 is Microphone Mist technology, which fills the room with 8,192 virtual microphones.

Listening to all microphones simultaneously, it dynamically selects the one closest to the speaker, ensuring the best quality sound for remote listeners.

“Trust and integrity are the foundations of partnerships,’ says Graham Bunting ‘and we are looking forward to working with Ascentae to help grow and expand their business.”

When selling isn’t selling







I have a perspective that says we are all selling at some time or other despite the fact that our role title may not have the word “sales” in it.

I have worked with a wide range of different people with differing skills and life perspectives and occasionally there was a tacit understanding that whilst the “sales team” carried a responsibility for the “number”, everyone had a responsibility as a representative of the company to present a positive external image to the World at large and in so doing increased the potential for businesses to want to work with us.

This has not always been the case, and at the other extreme, I have experienced the silos of “you are sales” we are….. etc. Whilst I am not saying that this is right or wrong, what I am intending to highlight is the fact that I believe, we all have a responsibility as a member of the business team to take the job of representing the business as positively as we can as “ambassadors” if you will. In so doing, it is my belief that this will create a wave of good-will that can only be positive. Remember of course that the reach of social media can play a big role in this and everyone in the business knows people – very often people of influence and potential customers for your business’s services or products.

Make sure you are a person of value to yourself and your business and ultimately you are contributing to the success of the organisation – PLEASE don’t just leave it to the sales team

Are you taking this seriously?

The scramble is on – only 48 days to go for you to guide the ship to a state of compliance. The GDPR notification was set almost 2 years ago, and for most, this seemed what it was, years away. However, the day of reckoning is arriving, and you’ve not done anywhere near enough have you? The LARGE fines are taking centre stage and they are very worrying, aren’t they?

My advice to you, however, is DO NOT PANIC. You do however need to get started and ensure that you are in a more prepared state than you are right now – The stress and inertia of doing nothing is the challenge and once you do start, the stress will disappear and you will feel much better that you took action.

So delay no more – will get you started and be your constant companion on the journey to GDPR and beyond

What do these wheelbarrows have in common with sales?

None of them are effective until you push them…..

How many great ideas did you and your business come up with last year? I’ll wager at least one, probably way more than that. How many of those great ideas did you implement successfully? I’m guessing that you probably didn’t implement them all – fair?

Your business success is predicated upon ACTION! Even a poor business strategy executed well is better than a great business strategy poorly executed or not executed at all.

So often I encounter discussions that are extremely positive and exciting – full of energy and purpose, until it comes to action. Then there is none, and the moment and opportunity are lost.

Will you be different and be a person of action, or will you join the ranks of idea creators and languish in average? The decision is yours

Need some help and guidance or just a sounding board – contact me here 

Here are the three reasons you’re not selling enough

1. Prospecting too little

2. Follow up poor

3. Lack of persistence

Too little prospecting

Prospecting is probably one of the most written about topics in the sales process. The act of seeking out new customers should form one of the highest priority activities for your business. Interestingly, despite this being a critical element it’s incredible how little senior focus this gets (other than quizzing the sales management and sales team on what they have done) across most businesses. Cold calling as an activity, however, has become an industry in itself, often being seen as a sales activity conducted by the junior team members, usually with banks of young men and women calling, calling , calling all day long looking for the needle in the haystack. The words “cold calling” strike fear into even the most mature and experienced professional. Yet if “baked-in” to good sales habits is in no way onerous and can actually become, dare I say enjoyable. Remember too, that like most activities in life, there is no quick-fix, it is about sustaining a regular cadence and patiently watch the results unfold.

Poor or no follow up

Poor follow up is in my mind inexcusable, as it should be a natural activity to follow any engagement and a way of capturing your own take-aways and recollections of commitments made and actions to complete, plus of course next steps. It is a great way of showing your professionalism and interest in the other parties. The old adage of “forget your customers and they will forget you” is for me the embodiment of this habit…stay connected and engaged and be relevant and professional.

Lack of sales persistence

How often have you said or heard sales people saying “I’ve chased and had no response, I can’t be bothered chasing any more” or words to this effect? Statistically 80% of sales are made on the 5th to 12th contact, so stay persistent and show that you want to do business, but a word of caution – not at any cost. We are all living in an attention-deficit society and responses are often delayed because of this.

In summary – get a structure in place and make sure you are consistent in applying your routines and build a reputation that you can be proud of by being a true professional in the way you conduct yourself at all times.

Who is coaching you?

never quitWhether you are Jonny Wilkinson, Steph Houghton or Mo Farah, the one thing they all have in common is that they all had, and continue to have support to develop their skills and success – a sports coach – in fact probably several coaches with differing and complementary skills.

How about you? Are you so talented that you don’t need coaching? Maybe it’s more simple than that – you simply lack ambition?

No of course not, It’s none of the above is it….you just haven’t been thinking in these terms have you? But now that we are discussing it, it makes sense doesn’t it? In fact it’s rather more common than most of us might think.

So now you are thinking about it – what will you do differently?

Give me a call now – that’s right be a “do it now” person of action.

Success awaits you – the bold and audacious, I salute you.

Sales – Art or science?

Selling – is it an art or a science? not giving in

In truth, it’s both. The process of a non- customer becoming a customer through their buying process, has a bucket full of potential twists and turns to arrive as a new customer to your enterprise.

The science of selling is in the planning and understanding of how to get from where you are, to where you want to be. How you reach your target audience and what will attract them to your online presence (the NEW Shop window). The art component is to do with your engagement with the potential customer.

However you consider customer acquisition, you need to attract or find new ones and take care of and nurture the ones you already have. Rest assured that someone will be trying to lure your customers away from you, just as you are attempting to encourage new customers into your care.

The one universal truth is that this does all take some time, so do not expect to have orders rolling in because you have launched your web site or because you have received 3 inquires this week. Building your business is a long game, so stay ambitious but realistic and keep trusting the process, and above all be persistent and professional.