Family Owned Businesses: Culture and Profitability

Your family owned business has a unique culture. Are you certain you understand it? The energy, focus, spirit and level of personal accountability of the people in your organization are indicators of your current culture.

Are you, as a leader, spending all of your time solving problems and reacting to adversity? Are you prepared to get an honest, objective assessment of your culture?

You may be uncertain about the actual performance capacity of each individual on the team, and why performance doesn’t meet expectations. Your people can withhold their best efforts, impacting every process in the business, including sales performance.

Are you ready move forward and make the necessary changes to transform into a performance-driven, aligned team?

You, as a business owner, have achieved some degree of earned respect in your business.  This respect is the direct outcome of your spirit, decision-making, purpose and drive. You set the pace, and your actions inspire and advance performance. Do you know where you stand? An assessment can identify the strengths and limiting elements in your current culture. Understanding the current culture in your business is the first step in profitability advancement. Transform your business from a disconnected group to a focused, energized performance-driven team.

Your leadership skills should be assessed as part of the process. By an objective assessment, specific actions can be taken to assist you to move from being a reacting leader to a thinking leader that inspires.

These fundamental issues are at the core of sustained growth and accelerated profitability for a family owned business. Maximize the strengths and minimize the limitations in your current organizational culture.

Your Company’s Culture and the Impact on Performance and Profitability

The culture in your business is a measurable quantity. Performance levels, energy and intensity are key elements in your company’s current culture. These can be quantified. A focus on tactical actions that affect the performance, people and alignment within the organization are essential to increasing profits.  Profit is the outcome and measure of how well a company does in all things, including the actions of the people, the internal energy generated in the culture, performance, understanding, alignment and advancement. Your people are the core resource of your company. As a leader, do you inspire and advance performance growth?

Mis-Aligned or Underperforming People

Are you concerned about the performance levels in your company? Underperforming people tend to blame others or internal situations, and usually have no personal accountability for what they do (or don’t do). “Do it because I say so!” – will have no positive outcome. Owners could be viewed as ineffective, unwilling to listen, disconnected, or are not acting in a leadership role that inspires performance advancement. This is true in family-owned businesses, privately held corporations, and many other organizations.

Advancing Performance: Understanding Your Company’s Culture

Your company is an intelligent organism, and must be evaluated and understood from this perspective. Successfully shifting an organizational culture begins with evaluating the organism and the opinions of those within it, on a completely confidential basis, with the right questions. Only then can a strategy be understood, developed, executed and advanced to instill energy, advance performance and lead to personal accountability. This transformation will lead to quantifiable results.

The objective is to maximize the positive elements of the organizational culture, while increasing performance growth. There is a natural outcome of an increase in profitability. Companies that require rules, regulations and standards as a way to regulate and manage people and outcomes to the minimal defect and error rate are companies destined to create a cultural disconnect. When individuals say people are valued, but actions do not support the words, you inhibit performance advancement. People, your core resource, can be regulated and managed, with very temporary results.

What is the common language of the culture to inspire and advance performance in the people that define your culture? An owner observing low performance, lack of energy and focus and people that have no personal stake in the company’s success must make smart decisions. The first step is to accurately identify the internal barriers to sustainable performance.

A shift in the existing culture to an environment in which all of the people are aligned in purpose, and are personally driven to high level of performance naturally leads to profitability. A spirit and culture that includes a company-wide engagement in achievement can transform your company.

Growth Smart Business

How do you shift a culture that has lost its intensity, drive and energy to an aligned team that is engaged, effective, and focused on performance? When people within a company begin to fully understand, acknowledge and measure how they contribute to profitability, they have taken the first major step toward owning personal accountability and the performance of the company.

How will you make the transition from being a tactical “doing” leader to a thinking advancing leader? Your people, culture, performance and profit require you to know the answer. Profitability is the sum total of the aligned actions of the people in your company. Without engagement, alignment and personal accountability for performance advancement, there is no long term sustainability.

When profits falter, or are stagnant, sales results don’t equal sales expectations, or the owners are focused on internal problems, it is time to make the smart, effective decisions. It starts with an analysis, based upon the objective understanding of your current culture. The energy and engagement of the people in your organization is your greatest untapped core resource.

Perpetual Development works with business leaders in privately held companies and family owned businesses. Connect with Perpetual Development to understand how you can advance or transform your company’s culture to gain a distinct competitive advantage.

What’s the Readiness Index of your Salespeople?

Readiness defined is referenced as the state of being fully prepared for something. Index defined is referenced as an indicator, sign or measure. So here’s the question: What’s your sales readiness index?

Advancing Sales

The best way to identify salespeople with a high sales readiness index is by what they do instead of what they say. (Look at their behaviors rather than their words; although words can be revealing.)

High readiness index salespeople create action that is exceptionally alert, externally oriented, relentlessly aimed at winning, making progress each and every day, and constantly eliminating low value-added activities – all by always focusing on their sales disciplines and preparedness.

They pay much more attention to what is happening externally rather than internally. They move at the “speed” needed to succeed and recognize that you can take fast and make it faster. They initiate and truly own their sales performance with the measured attribute of personal accountability. Most of all, they constantly re-invent and re-examine and don’t rely exclusively on what has worked for them in the past.

Preventing Complacency

sales-approach-sales-performanceA low sales readiness index and complacency can be the product of success or perceived success. Both can live long after success has stopped occurring or disappeared entirely.

Salespeople with a low readiness index, never think they are complacent. “I’m doing what’s right.” “The real problem doesn’t reside with me. The problem is being created elsewhere or by someone else.” (The measured attribute of personal accountability is significantly lower than in high capacity salespeople) At a very gut level, low readiness salespeople are content with the status quo.

A High Sales Readiness Index Contributes to Results
Being fully prepared and measuring that preparedness leads salespeople to a High Readiness Index. It allows them to fully engage around their chosen sales strategy and approach.  As the points below suggest, there is a clear connection between a proactive approach and the readiness index of salespeople.

  • Continually evaluate sales effectiveness – maximize strengths and minimize limitations, discuss best practices with top performing peers and utilize internal and external expertise to grow individual sales knowledge and perspectives.
  • Clearly define priorities and self-created performance expectations.
  • Communicate often about the successes, challenges and opportunities impacting customers. Utilize product, service and all other strengths to achieve great results for you and customers.
  • Maximize the use of reporting, tracking and measurement to achieve optimum sales results and financial reward.
  • Be intolerant of a low performance and sales readiness index.
  • Strive for consultative and stronger customer relationships; using a value proposition that is based on a trusted advisor status related to product and service opportunities.
  • Use product and service strength to convert customers who are currently doing business with the competitor.
  • Establish and focus on defined pricing, targeted margins and minimized discounting.
  • Shorten the sales cycle through behavioral awareness of customers and prospects.
  • Regularly assess and review personal performance to make sure that your approach, behaviors and actions reflect that of a sales professional with a High Readiness Index.

The sales readiness index of your salespeople has a direct impact on advancing the performance, culture and profitability of a company.