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Build a High-Value Sales Organisation

Communicate real value through your sales strategy.

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Among the many challenges facing business today are tightened market conditions, increased competition and reduced budgets. The challenge is therefore to be more competitive and efficient. So said Ivor Jones, chairman of the ThinkSales corporation at the opening of this year’s ThinkSales Sales Leadership Conference. “Greater market analysis, extended customer analysis, sales force sizing and structure, sales force alignment as well as your company structure all have a role to play in driving your desired sales results,” he continued. “The speakers throughout this conference will be addressing these and other challenges.”

Adding value

Day one of the two-day conference kicked off with Nic Read, founder of SalesLabs in the US, discussing how sales teams can access the C-suite of companies. His core message was that buying today has changed – but selling hasn’t, leaving a huge gap in realizing sales targets. “The democratisation of information means that companies already know everything about you and your company before you even walk through the door. There isn’t anything you can tell them that they don’t already know. So you need another reason to walk through that door – and keep coming back.”

According to Read, that ‘thing’ is adding real value to clients. “Every company has issues and problems that they are focusing on solving. You need to recognise these and help them get there. To really access executives, you need to not only be a sales representative, you need to become a trusted advisor, offering them information, insight and advice pertinent to their industry.”

Even if your company delivers on the sale well, in today’s climate that does not mean you are a shoe-in for the next deal. Why? Because sales consultants often do not track value throughout the deal. “You need to make a promise, show what you are doing, highlight what your customer’s staff are saying about the way you are delivering on that promise and then offer all the new ideas you have had along the way. Tell your customer, ‘we have been tracking and discussing the experience of your team with our product/service, and these are the ideas we have had on how you can improve efficiencies, cut costs and so on’. That’s building value beyond the sale,” said Read.

Creating conversations

The second keynote speaker of the day, sales linguistic expert Steve W Martin, focused on how to create rapport with a customer. “Different people at different levels of the organisation and in different departments care about different things, and the way you communicate with them should reflect that,” he explained.

“Every decision maker has two areas of focus: what they are creating within the organisation, and what they are controlling. Your product or service will solve different needs at different levels. What the CEO and CIO care about for instance, is not the same as what the IT manager cares about. Determine what the individual who you are speaking to is creating and controlling, and speak in their specific language. Don’t talk about what an IT manager cares about to a CIO. You will not hold their attention.”

Martin’s advice is to determine these ‘create’ and ‘control’ factors before a meeting. This not only guides you to speak in the correct ‘language’ for who you are communicating with, but it forces you to mentally put yourself in their shoes, which in turn means you are having the conversation they want to have, instead of reciting your own industry jargon, catch phrases and the technical language of your product or service to them. “The goal of a sales consultant is to build momentum – and to do that you need to be having a conversation.”

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Entrepreneur Today

Amaphiko Academy Calls For Innovative Change Makers

Applications must be submitted by 6PM on 30 November 2018. Only South African citizens or residents will be considered.

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The world is constantly experiencing a myriad social problems and is thus always in need of strong innovators to bring about changes and fresh solutions.  Red Bull Amaphiko Academy is searching for new, innovative social change makers for 2019. Applications to be part of the Amaphiko Academy will be open between 01 October and 31 November 2018.

The Academy gives a platform to entrepreneurs who use their skills, talents and energy to solve social problems. The Red Bull Amaphiko program gives a platform to innovators who are transforming their communities through sustainable, socially-minded, grassroots solutions to make a bigger impact.

The Academy, which was launched in South Africa in 2014, has been home to over 50 participants over the past five years.  It has expanded to another 20 countries around the world. 2019 Will see four Red Bull Amaphiko Academies launch worldwide. The Academy inspires and enables social entrepreneurs to make a difference by giving them access to networks, information, skills, opportunities and exposure.

“Exposure to a broader international network of Amaphiko SEs and various specialists opened endless opportunities and gave me the most memorable lessons in my journey as an entrepreneur. By exposing me to a larger social network, Red Bull challenged me to expand my vision. Through it all I learnt that the calling to be a change maker fulfils more than just the financial goal. It is for the greater good of humanity.” Says Murendeni Mapfumo, Kusini Water co-founder and 2017 Red Bull Amaphiko graduate.

Related: Learning Innovation Africa To Showcase How Our Continent’s Learning Is Being ‘Uber’ed

The Academy, which takes 16 Social Entrepreneurs per cycle, starts with a ten-day residency program. It is then followed by 18 months of mentorship, coaching and expert guidance, helping entrepreneurs develop their enterprises and business acumen.

South Africa’s 2019 Red Bull Amaphiko Academy will take place in Durban between 16 and 26 May. Durban is one of South Africa’s biggest cities, and a hotbed of innovation and talent. Red Bull Amaphiko is looking for innovative, inspiring people to be part of this wonderful journey.

If you fancy yourself to be a creative social entrepreneur with a strong innovative edge, please log onto https://www.redbull.com/za-en/events/Amaphiko-Academy-Applications-2019/Red-Bull-Amaphiko-2019-Apply-NOW

Applications must be submitted by 6PM on 30 November 2018. Only South African citizens or residents will be considered.

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The Moldova Citizenship-by-Investment Program Is Officially Open To Applicants

The MCBI program, with its highly competitive pricing structure, will appeal to those who are not necessarily looking to relocate but who would like to secure a ‘plan B’ or expanded traveling access for themselves and their families.

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The Moldova Citizenship-by-Investment (MCBI) program — the latest and most exciting new investment migration opportunity in Europe — has been officially launched and is now accepting applications. Henley & Partners, global leaders in residence and citizenship planning – in partnership with its consortium partner, the Moldovan Investment Company – are assisting the Government of the Republic of Moldova in designing, implementing, and internationally promoting the much-anticipated MCBI program.

Amanda Smit, Director, Head of Henley & Partners Central, Eastern and Southern Africa, says of the Moldova program: “The launch of this prestigious new European program is momentous in the investment migration community as it boosts the industry’s relevance and value. The MCBI program offers investors a foothold in Europe and access to one of the fastest growing commercial hubs in the region, while also giving Moldova the chance to attract much-needed foreign direct investment and a set of highly qualified and carefully vetted new citizens.”

His Excellency Chiril Gaburici, the Minister of Economy and Infrastructure for the Government of Moldova, provides insight into the program’s origins: “The MCBI program has been specifically developed with the Moldovan people in mind. Our country has come a very long way over the past few years, and many of our most important industries are today thriving and growing. Now, in order to take the next step forward in our economic development, and also support the social wellbeing of all Moldovans, we need to welcome innovative new ways of generating capital. The MCBI program is part of this future-focused approach.”

Related: Enterprise Development Programmes For Black Entrepreneurs

The MCBI program requires applicants to make a defined economic contribution to the country through its Public Investment Fund. In exchange, and subject to a stringent vetting and due diligence process, applicants and their families are granted full citizenship rights that are transferrable without restrictions to future generations. They also gain a passport that facilitates travel access to 122 destinations around the world, including Russia, Turkey, and the countries in Europe’s Schengen Area.

The Moldovan passport is in fact one of the highest historical climbers on the Henley Passport Index, having ascended an impressive 20 places since 2008. The Moldovan Government is working hard to continue this upward trend and has already signed several visa-waiver agreements with foreign countries this year, further boosting the power of the Moldovan passport.

Smit elaborates on the program offering: “The attractiveness of the MCBI program lies in the country’s unique geographic position at the crossroads of Europe, the Middle East, and Asia and its robust passport strength, combined with the genuine affordability and accessibility of the program. Moldova is a high-growth, high-potential European country, with strong economic and diplomatic ties with the EU, and many individuals around the world want to be part of its current and future successes. Certainly, Henley & Partners is proud to be a partner to this remarkable nation, whose citizenship-by-investment program is set to redefine the European investment migration landscape.”

Henley & Partners has recently recorded an upsurge of 229% year-on-year in South Africans applying for alternative citizenship, mostly looking into European states such as Malta and Cyprus. South Africa is currently ranked 52nd on the Henley Passport Index, with visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 102 destinations. This marked increase in applications can be attributed to a growing recognition of the need for global mobility. The MCBI program, with its highly competitive pricing structure, will appeal to those who are not necessarily looking to relocate but who would like to secure a ‘plan B’ or expanded traveling access for themselves and their families.

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Entrepreneur Today

Engen Learn Programme Provides Critical Life-skills

The Engen Learn programme has receive numerous national awards, including an award from Apple for innovation, the Future of HR Best Learning and Development Strategy award in 2017, and a Directors Best Choice nomination for the same award in 2018.

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Engen, in collaboration with FUEL Online Training, has delivered a record 3.5 million training interventions to Engen forecourt attendants around the country since its inception in 2013.

The training focuses on job skills and competencies related to customer service as well as critical life-skills which can be accessed via an iPad training app.

Community support material created for Engen staff includes basic first aid, drug and alcohol abuse prevention and understanding money management.

The programme has also offered 640 000-education interventions concerning people living with HIV, which still affects millions of South African families.

“We are very excited by the level of success achieved by our programme. The Engen sites that implemented Engen Learn have delivered increased customer satisfaction,” says Retail Training Academy Manager, Renee Kemm.

The Engen Learn programme has receive numerous national awards, including an award from Apple for innovation, the Future of HR Best Learning and Development Strategy award in 2017, and a Directors Best Choice nomination for the same award in 2018.

“This a ground breaking solution which, if nurtured, has the power to be a truly transformative force in South Africa. Our reach allows us to directly inspire thousands of employees, who in turn are empowered to impact on their families and communities,” adds Kemm.

Related: How Does One Start a Petrol Station in South Africa?

Below are some comments received via survey from service station staff about Engen Learn:

  • “Ever since the introduction of Engen Learn I learnt so much and not only about the industry but am happy to say am now debt free because I followed what I learned here.”
  • “When I started as a Cashier it was just a job. The Engen Learn modules about the history of Engen fascinated me. Today, even the President, is not as happy as I am in my job. All thanks to a simple app.”
  • “Engen Learn has taught me to be strong and resourceful manager and it has given me some powerful life lesson especially when it comes to budgeting and being a responsible person in life.”
  • “I have learned to identify someone who uses substances. I learned how to budget. I have learned how to deal with someone who is HIV positive.”

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