Do You Know What You Don’t Know?
3. Ask your vendors. Network. Spy on your competition. I could have broken this one up into three, but I’m lazy and tired. Enlisting the expertise and vision of your vendors should be a given. If they have events, go. If you have the opportunity to talk to someone on their senior leadership team, do it. Ask them where they see the industry going and what they think you need to know. Ditto networking. And of course I am not advocating committing corporate espionage or anything, but keep your ear to the ground. If your competitor is making a major acquisition, it will be obvious. You can decide whether it was a good decision; something to emulate, or sit back and wait to see what happens. Beware, however, of looking too “ME TOO.”
That’s all I got for now—like I said—I’m pretty sleepy. Just be aware that you may not know what you don’t know, and every day is a new opportunity to learn something new.
Blogger, author, consultant, coach and all around evangelist for the graphic arts industry, Kelly sold digital printing for 15 years so she understands the challenges, frustrations and pitfalls of building a successful sales practice. Her mission is to help printers of all sizes sell more stuff. Kelly's areas of focus include sales and marketing coaching, enabling clients to find engagement strategies that work for them and mentoring the next generation of sales superstars.
Kelly graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Political Science and, among other notable accomplishments, co-founded the Windy City Rollers, a professional women's roller derby league. She is also the mother of two sets of twins under the age of ten, so she fears nothing.