The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast
The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

18. Critical Concepts Sales Leaders Must Communicate w/ John Kaplan

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Communication is a critical component to ensuring your teams stay focused. 

 

For sales leaders, it can be the one thing that separates the best from the rest. If your people understand where they’re going and how they’ll get there, you are one step closer to your revenue goals. 

 

In this episode, John Kaplan covers the concept of a leadership footprint to explains how leaders can:

 

- Outline their organization’s new mission and explain how they’re planning to get there

 

- Articulate exactly what they need from their sales teams to succeed 

 

Check out this and other episodes of The Audible-Ready Podcast at Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or our website.

 

Here are some additional resources focused on the leadership footprint: 

 

Leadership Footprint Template https://forc.mx/2UAM0Qr

 

Blog: “What Your Top Performers are Thinking in Your Sales Kickoff Presentation” https://bit.ly/2N9FbB8

How we're going to emerge from covid nineteen. What is that going to look like, and all the pain and suffering that we're going through right now. It's critically important that leaders articulate this and to make it something that people are willing to strive for. You're listening to the audible ready podcast, the show that helps you and your team's sell more faster. will feature sales leader sharing their best insights on how to create a sales engine that helps you fuel repeatable revenue growth, presented by the team at force management, a leader in BTB sales effectiveness. Let's get started. Hello, I'm Rachel Clad Miller. Welcome to the audibile ready podcast. Today we are talking about communication. It's so important. You can't be successful in business if you don't know how to communicate, and it really is what separates great leaders from the ones who falter, and right now is a critical time to be communicating with your teams. John...

Kaplan is joining me today. John, you've been talking to a lot of sales leaders about this very topic. Given the environment. Yeah, I think the timing is great and, like you said, you can never overcommunicate, so it's a good topic for us right, we'd say it a lot. You have to communicate. Make sure you're communicating your teams, but providing the how can sometimes be challenging and some people might think they're doing great at communication, but their people might think otherwise. So one of the concepts that we use to help leaders communicate is a leadership footprint. Yeah, so before we dig into the leadership footprint, I want to kind of tell you how we kind of came up with this. Came up with this idea, and I'm going to start with a little story about my favorite college football team, the Great Michigan Wolverines, back in ninety seven. Unfortunately it's been that long since we've won the national championship. But back in ninety seven the head coach was a guy named Lloyd car and he led the wolverines on an incredible journey to...

...the national championship. And at the start of the season Michigan was ranked, you know, seventeen, maybe at best, and nobody picked them to be national champions. So car had a giant mural painted of Mount Everest and placed it in the team's meeting room, you know, and at the summit he placed the Rose Bowl and the national championship and the season's opponents were placed all along the trail on the way to the summit. And he also invited a Michigan Native, a Dr Luke Kessich. I'm probably not pronouncing that correctly, but if you read the book into Thin Air, it was a New York Times best seller. I would highly suggest you read it. It's really a cool story. It's a tragic story, but it's a cool story. Expect, for about Dr Kesset's where he found himself, you know, almost frozen to death on the mountain and he he rose up and basically walked to his to save his life. But so car use the theme of the journey through...

...the season and the team had to earn the right to move from one milestone to the next. You know, for example, base camp one was a certain opponent. Base camp too was probably a certain opponent. And that historic season influence my thinking on leadership and communication and we wound up creating something called the leadership footprint, which has become a great way to gain and keep the hearts and minds of your employees by connecting them to you know, five specific things which will dig into. But purpose, passion, vision, strategy, and skills. Yeah, and I think the metaphor there is a great way to make the point that big success or those big rocks are trying to go after are often the result of achieving several small milestones. So the leadership footprint made up of five components, you just mentioned, I'm John Purpose, passion, vision, strategy and skills. So let's start with those first two.

Purpose and passion. Purpose is your mission. Passion is why you believe in it. Where as we're going through this, I want you to think about it like a lot of people out there are trying to create some great destinations and the Destinyan it's never really about the destination. It's always about the journey. It is always about the process, never about the event. The events happen because you've invested in the process. And so when we break this down into a process and you talked about the first couple, purpose and passion, they're two of my favorite ones. So every great leader, anybody leading anything, I don't care if you're an application, you know, engineer, if you are a seller, if you're Dr if, your sales manager, if your ceocmocxo, whatever, you can incorporate these concepts. The first thing you got to start with is the purpose and it's and it is the it basically is the why of what you guys are doing. So why are we going to do this? And the purpose? In one thousand nine hundred and ninety seven, the purpose was to win the national championship, to be the greatest...

...college football team in the land at that particular time. And so when I look into organizations and I try to ask like, you know, what is the resonating purpose of your organization? I've heard some great ones, you know, with some great technology out there to deliver, you know, unbelievable results and healthcare, to deliver unbelievable results and it or whatever it is, to be the leader and in whatever fields you're in. So the purpose is really, really, really important. And you heard Simon Senex start with, you know, start with the why, and that's exactly what he meant. And then the passion. For me, a lot of leaders will say, you know, I'm struggling to find the passion for my people right now, like they don't really they're not passionate. Talking to a lot of executives right now that are worried about the passion of an organization and really, I don't think. I think you're over complicating it. Passion is nothing more than belief in the purpose. It's the evidence of the purpose. You can think of it as like proof points of the purpose. So if we want to be the...

...best team in the land, if we want to be, you know, the the leader and healthcare provider services, so what is your evidence? What is the evidence? What is the belief? Passion comes from belief in the purpose and you need to be purposeful about articulating that to your to your team. So those first ones, if you if you don't get those right, you can really struggle, because you'll see as we continue to go through this, they're all related. Yeah, so purpose is your mission. Passion is why, is why you believe in the mission. And tied very closely, is that third concept, which is the vision. Yes, yeah, and so for me, vision is nothing more than purpose in the future. Let me repeat it. Vision is nothing more than purpose in the future. And so if we're, you know, one thousand nine hundred and ninety seven, Michigan's case, if we wanted to be the national champions, for want to be the best team in the land, that look like, you know,...

...hoisting the trophy, to be the greatest team in the land, to be number one, ranked number one in the end. And so you know, in the case of the climbing the summit, it would be analogous to taking your team to the top of a summit of Mount Everest in a helicopter and getting so close to the summit that you could, you know, open the door and let them kind of dangle their legs out a little bit, but don't let them touch the summit, but let them stretch to see if they can just touch their toes to the summit. But right before they do that, then, closing the door, tell them the pilot to go down to the base camp as fast as you can. And why tell that? Analogy is you want to be able to paint that picture of what that of achieving the summit, of what it's going to look like. So the vision has to be where does this purpose get me in the future? And when you think about it in business terms, you have to be people constantly are trying to see themselves in the future and if your team can't see themselves in the...

...future, they start to create other scenarios. You know, the the a players, the greatest people, the greatest players on the planet, the greatest performers on the planet. They don't wait around for somebody to create a future and tell them what it looks like. They're constantly trying to place themselves in the future. So as a leader, you have to do a great job of articulating that vision and which is nothing more than what this purpose is going to look like in the future. So you can decide, as a follower, as a participant on this team, whether that is something that you're that is motivating for you to do and it's in as a leader, you can constantly have to build that into something that makes people want to make that climb. Very critical. Yeah, how many times have you talked to some of you saying about leaving their job and they'd say, I just don't feel like it's going anywhere? Yes, yeah, if you can't see yourself in the future, you begin to make up your own future. And a players there's...

...an old, old saying it's as a rolling stone gathers no moss. That's exactly what that means. They don't wait around for somebody to create a future for them. That that is you know, that is positive. They wind up creating their own so the best that you can do is to create something that is worthy of somebody wanting to climb that summit, and it's so it's critically important. Yeah, and the driver of all of this is the other concept, strategy, passion, purpose, vision. All sounds good, but without this strategy you can't accomplish it. Yeah, so now you got my attention. You've told me what the purpose is, you've told me why I should believe in the purpose with so I'm passionate about it because I have evidence that we are a great team, that we do have great solutions, that are customers do appreciate our allucians, or whatever the scenario is. So now and then you've created a vision of what that's going to look like, how we going to emerge from covid nineteen, and what is that going to look like? And all the pain and suffering that we're going through right now,...

...it's critically important that leaders articulate this into make it something that people are willing to strive for, they're willing to climb that mountain. For now, the strategy piece. So you have my attention, you've got me passionate, I understand the purpose. You've got me passionate, I believe in the purpose and now I believe that that's something that I want to achieve. The Vision. Now I'm going to judge my leadership team on the strategy, and it's nothing more than how are we going to get there? How are we going to get there? But it's kind of the backside of the summit, if you will. It is you've earned the right. You've got my attention. Now I'm paying attention. What are the specific steps that we need to go through in order to achieve that vision? So now people are judging you on what's the plan? What is the plan? The plan, and then that is also transitions into the concept called skills. Yeah, I love this. So the last one. So we've got, you know, we've as we're motoring...

...along here. We've got purpose, we've got passion, WE'VE GOT VISION, we've got strategy, and now we break this last at one down into skills. And I want you to just translate that to as the leader, what is your ask, what is your immediate ask of your either your sales team, your leadership team, your organization, whatever it is that you're leading? What is your ask, and the reason why we called it skills is because these are the things that we need people to be really, really good at. And in the analogy it's like Lloyd cars like this is why I'm asking you to get up at old dark thirty or thirty in the morning and to get in the weight room so we can get work in in the morning and then we're going to meet in the afternoon and then we're going to have film session or and I need you to commit yourself to being great. And you got to have good grades in school and so maybe it you know, in the business world, it's got to be. This is why I'm asking you to practice those role plays with great discovery questions and make sure that you're aligning to these three value drivers and make sure that you understand these three differentiators,...

...because these things are going to be a huge part of US getting to the summit. This is the ask that I have of my team, of my organization. It is the doable. It is it is in your circle of influence and I want to make it your circle of concern. This is what helps me help you get up at thirty in the morning and to do what you need to do. And so, when you think about it, I've taken you up the summit. I've made you look at the summit, I've made you long and want to achieve the summit and the climb. And now I I'm telling you that you got to get in shape. So we went up there in a helicopter. So I described it to you well. But now we got to get in shape. We first got to get our lungs ready to get to base camp one and our legs ready to get to base camp to whatever those scenarios are. For you, be very specific on the fundamentals that you need your team. This is your ask for them to commit themselves to the fundamentals. We've had great feedback on it. People have actually...

...written this out and shared it with their teams. I think it's a I think you're going to give them some some resources to do that, Rachel, and I highly highly recommend you cannot overcommunicate right now, so be specific and what you're asking them. Yeah, I was just going to say if you download this podcast and you're not listening to it with a pen and paper, never fear, never fair. We have a resource for you. There's a url in the show notes and this it maps it out with the table that explains purpose, passion, vision, strategy and skills, as you question, and you can outline a specific message that you want to share with your teams as it relates to each one of those each one of those areas. It's a great toy. We've given it out in some other talks that John has given and it's a it's a great way to boil these concepts down into into specific action items. So, before we go, John, do you have a great bottom line where we're on Everest? What do we do now?...

I'MD it. We're we're on Everest. All of us are longing to get to Everest and to get through this and to get to the other side. I think right now I just wish all of you listening just continue success and commitment and into your ability to emerge, in your commitment, to emerge from all of this stuff, in quotations, all of this stuff that we're dealing with. I just wish you the desire to emerge a better version of yourself and, along with this podcast that we've been talking about, is make sure you create a journey worth climbing the mountain for and bring others along. So we wish you'd great success in that journey. I'm thank you, John. Thank you to all of you for listening to the AUDIB already podcast. At force management, we're focused on transforming sales organizations into elite teams. Are Proven methodologies deliver programs that build company alignment and fuel repeatable revenue growth. Give your...

...teams the ability to execute the growth strategy at the point of sale. Our strength is our experience. The proof is in our results. Let's get started. Visit US at force MANAGEMENTCOM. You've been listening to the audible ready podcast. To not miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player. Until next time,.

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