To Grow Sales You Need The “In” and The “On”

Published on December 27, 2016


As a sales and leadership expert, I find people working mostly “in” their business (such as making sales calls, fulfilling orders), this will only get you so far. To maximize your business you must also work “on” your business (strategizing, coaching and leading). When you work “in” and “on” your business you will gain velocity and maximum growth. And, you’ll be making the greatest Impact on your markets, customers and employees/colleagues.

Working on your business is doing what it takes to ensure the business’s functions are running properly to support the growth you want for the business. This is an issue that CEOs and leaders should look at daily because as entrepreneurs, sometimes the easiest thing to do is to get back into doing the work because you like doing the work.  That’s no way to grow a business. Here are three things for you to consider as you think about working on your business versus working in it:

1. Get others to do the tasks. If you’re doing the majority of the important tasks, then the business is overly dependent on you. Hire and coach others to do the tasks so you can focus on growth.

2. Become a resource manager. Leading is about managing resources well. Those resources include human capital, money, and marketing—everything a business needs to get the message out and increase awareness of your products and services. I am astounded how often I go into small businesses and find no marketing function. Instead these businesses are relying on their sales reps to spread the word. Every business should have a person dedicated to social media presence to facilitate branding and marketing efforts. Working on the business is about working with all of your resources to make sure each business function is working properly.

3. Act like the company you want to be. If you’re a $10 million company and you want to become a $20 million company, are you making the decisions that the CEO of a $10 million company would make? A leader of a $20 million company is going to make different decisions than a leader of a $10 million company. If you want to be something, then start acting like it. Those decisions will put you in a better position to get where you want to go.

Set goals for spending time ON your business, and be sure to maximize that time. This should be true for all of your leaders. If your leaders are constantly doing rather than working on the business, then you do not have an effective management team. If you want real growth, then stop being a slave to the daily work and start working on your business strategically. Call me if you need help.

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