Who Gets Into YOUR Sales Team?

Last weekend, a group of young men and women were out celebrating their friends 18th Birthday.

They’d been out for something to eat – had a few drinks at a local bar – then moved on to somewhere with a little more life to finish the night off.

As they walked up to the entrance to the swanky club, a doorman told one of the young men that his shoe laces were untied.

The young man thanked him for the information – and then carried on.

But the bouncer stopped him again – and this time said;

“No mate – you’re not coming in here until you’ve done up your shoelace!”

Easily sorted – shoe lace neatly tied – the group move indoors.

Once inside, the young man tells everyone he meets that the guy on the door is a jerk – that he had no right to treat him like that for something as menial as a shoelace – taking advantage of his position of power.

Back in my day – you couldn’t get in anywhere decent if you were wearing jeans or trainers – that’s evolved and relaxed over the last twenty or thirty years – but the dress code was never meant to be a comment on fashion.

It was an underlying statement and message.

You see, the message for that group wasn’t meant to be parental or hierarchical – it wasn’t “watch yourself there young people, you might trip up on your laces” or “smarten yourself up for the school trip”.

The underlying message is this;

“There’s a bar down the road where everyone walks around with their laces undone and their shirts hanging out – drinks are dirt cheap – there’s a fight every weekend – and the smell in the facilities makes you gag. You’re free to go to that bar if you want – but people who make it through these doors don’t want to spend their money or time like that. So what kind of Saturday night person do you want to be?”

There’s an underlying message running through every team in your business too.

Take a look at your sales team for example – what’s the underlying message that your customers get from them?

If you’re a member of the management team you need to step back and think about what you’re creating, who you allow to join and what those choices say to others (customers, the competition and possible employees) looking in from outside.

Because over a fairly short period of time – a lack of standards and aspiration can decimate the results of even the most successful businesses.

In the world of night clubs and bars the race to the bottom with pricing and open door policy can be great for turnover and capacity crowds for a short time – but can lead to dwindling profits and a whole host of other problems as the weeks turn into months.

So, getting into your sales team should be treated just like trying to join a private members club;

  • There should be a strict criteria for getting in
  • There should be a set of rules that need to be adhered to once you’re allowed to join
  • Which all goes to create a reputation so impressive that there’s a queue of people waiting all the way round the block (in the rain) just to be part of it.

And don’t be afraid to remind those who need telling to do something as basic as tying up their shoelaces (and who then have the audacity to moan about it to colleagues afterwards) that they can always go and fight it out during unhappy hour with all the other lobsters at the Nobody Inn down the road.


UK Workshops


(click on preferred city for full details)

Our Sales Management Open Workshops show you how to piece together the four main elements of successfully managing a team – Focus; Accountability; Motivation; Education – and show you how to get the best out of everyone involved.

At the end of this workshop delegates will be able to:

  • Work out how to focus on the real tasks that need to be achieved – and find a way to ensure every member of their team is doing that too.
  • Create a culture where every member of the team understands that they are accountable and responsible for their own success – and recognise exactly what that makes them accountable for.
  • Genuinely motivate people to over deliver -and even more importantly – learn how to make sure you don’t demotivate them.
  • Coach the entire team to greater things – learn how to give them a net of their own rather than continuously feeding them individual fish.
  • Feel competent and confident enough to conduct staff discipline in a professional (and legal) manner.


(click on preferred city name for full details)