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Change and Challenges – Amanda’s Story

By Osmaan Sharif

Recently there was a big change in the management team over at Citizen M Glasgow.

The new hotel manager, Amanda, had been a participant on one of my previous Talent Dynamics workshops here at Rapid Transformation, and approached me about doing some work with her new team.

Hitting the Ground Running

Her challenge was for the team to quickly build trust, understanding, and effective ways of communicating with each other.  She wanted them to hit the ground running, especially when it came to the special projects that each manager would now have individual responsibility for.

It was refreshing to work with a team that’s led by someone who’s putting Talent Dynamics to work.  Amanda had already been using all the knowledge and skills that she’d learnt at her previous workshop, by being mindful to recruit a team that spanned the eight profiles, as well as assigning individual projects according to profile strengths and preferences. 

Putting the Pieces Together

Now she wanted the team to gain an understanding and appreciation of each other’s strengths, and to work out how to excel together.  During their Step One (Full Day) Programme, we looked at the challenges the managers faced and how they could improve the way that they tackled them.

For example, we looked at how they could improve communication by understanding the differences in how people from each profile tend to act, communicate and think.  We took some of their pressing challenges and listened to all the different perspectives from each manager, noticing how they view things differently and what benefits that had for the team when it came to finding solutions.

Team Harmony

By the end of the workshop, all the managers recognised that they were part of a well-constructed team.  They were more appreciative of each other, and not only did they recognise that collaboration was key to the success of their hotel; they had the tools in place to make that collaboration a natural way of working for them.

As a result, they all understand why they’re each leading different projects, and how they can help each other to make them a success.  And Amanda didn’t come away empty handed.  Even though she’d been on a workshop before, she learnt more about how to best communicate with and support each individual member of her team.  She told me:

“It was a real awakening for the attendees to see how they each support one another based on their profiles. We came away from the day with real goals and areas for focus and having learned a lot. Since the training day, we have refreshed individual tasks based on profiles and the team harmony is better than ever. I can also use the training day as a starting point for developing each manager.”

Copy and Photo courtesy of Sam Dounis


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The Dynamic Dozen of Real Estate Sales

In the highly competitive world of Real Estate, a high functioning sales team is vital, followed closely by quality listings to satisfy their hunger to sell. One high profile South East Queensland agency turned their struggling sales team full spin into a dynamic force within months, using the guiding force of Talent Dynamics profiling techniques.

Profiled by Rebecca Mitchell, Talent Dynamics Master Trainer and Performance Consultant from Brisbane, this team of twelve real estate professionals achieved some surprising results.

From Flagging Sales…

Sluggish sales and unmet targets were an early warning sign that the team were falling out of step, despite a strengthening property market.

The General Manager knew every individual had the qualities of a great salesperson, yet somehow their motivation was lagging their ability. So he brought in Talent Dynamics Master Trainer, Rebecca Mitchell to decipher the cause of their failing KPI’s.

Each rep took a Talent Profile test. The GM had assumed all profiles would be Stars– known for their prowess as promoters and delivering results, or Supporters – able to reap sales with their Blaze energy leadership. But the Talent Dynamics profiling results proved different.  From the eight reps only three were Stars and one a Supporter, complemented by a Deal Maker, two Traders and one Accumulator.

By understanding how their Talent Profile powered their performance, the team identified changes that would take them into rapid flow.

But what quickly turned their team into a “dynamic dozen” was working together to change how each person went about selling that also complemented the others.  Their new goal: to increase revenue by $100,000 over the following 6-12 months.

The Stars came up with the strategies to help the Deal Maker, Traders and the Accumulator, instantly inspiring and reducing competition between them. Each eased into action – and their natural flow.

To Flogging It!

Over the following weeks, the sales team completely changed their focus and responsibilities. The Deal Maker shifted to partnering with other agencies and financiers in the region.  The Trader took over the ‘walk ins’ and incoming phone and website enquiries. The Accumulator concentrated on telesales and follow-up sales, as well as reporting weekly sales figures. The Supporter took over the Office Manager role and recruited a small team of three commission-only sales agents who worked closely with her – running information evenings, connecting with the local Chamber of Commerce, promoting their office and running monthly events.

The three Stars continued with traditional listing strategies by marketing direct to home owners. They also featured at the monthly events, each month in turn, which further developed them into their own area of expertise; one in apartments, one in standard priced houses and the other in executive homes and house and land sales.

Within six months the team had exceeded their initial $100,000 target! They are now set to increase their bottom line by $500,000 by the end of this year.

This shining real estate firm has jettisoned their motivation and their performance to new levels by embracing Team Dynamics at its best.


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A Labouring Lord – Rauri’s Story

by Dianne Caldwell

When I first spoke to Rauri, he was 18 years old, working part-time with his Ju Jitsu trainer teaching students and supplementing his income by working in a laboring job he didn’t particularly enjoy.

So I asked him what he would truly love to do…

Rauri’s voice shone with excitement.

“What I’d really love to do is move away from the job I don’t enjoy so I can teach Ju Jitsu full-time to teenagers….”

It turned out Rauri had been practising Ju Jitsu since he was 12 and was now highly trained. He credited both the physical and mental benefits of the sport as completely transforming his life.  Ju Jitsu was far more than just a sport to him.

“Ju Jitsu is not just a martial art, it’s a way to change your life, and I want other children to experience the same amazing life and health benefits which Ju Jitsu brings.”

There was just one problem: he didn’t know how to turn this passion into a successful full time career.

Lord Profile

 

Rauri’s profile was a LORD: 40% Steel. 24% Dynamo. 24% Tempo. 12% Blaze.

There were 2 obstacles stopping him from seeing his full potential and turning his passion for martial arts into a reality. These were his age, just 18, and the peer and societal pressure to “get a regular job”.

Together, we sat down and looked at his desired outcomes, then we established a series of key action steps for him to take to move toward his dream. These small, detailed tasks aligned with Rauri’s Lord profile perfectly.  Once he could take the dazzling dream and break it down into bite-sized chunks, the whole process was a lot less daunting.

First Rauri would contact his Ju Jitsu trainer and ask for support and at the same time, he would also put together his plan.

Getting Fast Results

Here’s the funny thing when you move toward your goals. Everything conspires to help you! In this case, Rauri’s trainer just so happened to know a teacher who was really keen on having martial arts training at her school. The next step was easy.

Rauri submitted his proposal to the teacher on the board at the school & after just 2 – 3 short weeks after shyly vocalizing this idea to me, his semester program is now in the process of being approved!

When Rauri reported back to me he was bursting with joy.

“I’ve done it!” he said.  “I’ve achieved my dream!”

Rauri’s big dream was there all the time, but for him it seemed as insurmountable as climbing Everest. All he needed was some reassurance that this dream was 100% achievable, and then some specific guidance on how to break the dream down into less daunting tasks.  Once Rauri was clear on the way forward he achieved clarity, and that was down to the help of Dianne Caldwell, the ‘Flow Consultant’ and the Talent Dynamics profiling tool.

Rauri’s story is a perfect example of how the Talent Dynamics Profile Test & Debrief has empowered a young person to know & understand their strengths to a point where they take the appropriate action they know will get them into flow.

The plan is in progress and we will update you again on the ongoing success of Rauri’s actions!

We’ll leave the final words to Rauri…

Firstly thank you so much, you have, and will continue to have, my gratitude for all the help you’ve given me. It’s been absolutely wonderful and I’m so glad you have taken the time to provide me with all your advice. I started with an idea but no knowledge or ability to bring it to life. Talent Dynamics gave me the direction in which to head and the impetus to do so, by providing clear action steps and manageable goals as well as excellent and highly personalized coaching along every step of the process. Can’t recommend it enough to anyone with a desire to realize their ideas and dreams.”


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DT’s Tower: Who You Gonna Call?

Unfortunately the answer isn’t always “Ghostbusters” which turned 30 this month.

Shameless use of popular culture segue over, the point of this blog is to pick up where I left off last time with my Delegation Game.  I thought it might be useful to show how I am attempting to solve a problem that would take me out of flow very quickly if I’m not careful.

I might have mentioned 🙂 but I’m a Lord.  As a raging introvert (extroverts can be raging, why not intorverts?) the ‘people’ side of the Talent Dynamics square is not my strong point.

In fact according to my profile report I have 0% in Blaze energy.  I’m reposting the square as proof.

Impressive I know.  This really makes it hard for me to delegate but even more so… it makes it hard for me to know who to call.  My first instinct is to do the task myself.  My second response is to think about training or learning how to do it if I can’t do it at the moment.  My third inclination is to park it until I have time to think about it…

… which never happens.

My Solution

Despite being introverted I am known to speak.  Sometimes at length.  Building on the flowchart that I shared last time I am identifying all the things that need to be done which I can’t do or don’t have time to do.

I’m using a spreadsheet so I’m definitely in my flow here.  I’m then matching people who I can talk to who are either already part of my team, have some expertise in the area or show no signs of struggling with this particular item.  Then I work down the list (making it a task which comes easily for me) and:

  1. See if someone in the team is interested in helping
  2. Investigating solutions with those with expertise
  3. Asking how others who don’t seem to struggle solved the problem

Now there are still gaps.  But whereas before it was a mountain of ‘stuff’ now I have specific things I need help with.  During networking or casual business conversations I can talk about these issues and in all likelihood I will either get suggestions OR (best scenario) I will happen across someone who can solve it.

The point of all this is that I now ‘know’ who to call AND have a process to follow to stop delegation tripping me up in future (in theory).

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GHOSTBUSTERS!


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Nicci’s Call: ONE Thing That Differentiates Trusted Selling from Bad Selling

By Nicola Bonfanti – Talent Dynamics for Sales

Put the client’s interests first.  Before your own!

Cold Call

What is it about cold calling and pushy sales that leaves you cold or even makes you angry when you are on the receiving end?

It’s the feeling that you don’t matter to the salesperson, you are just a number, a name on a list to call, that the salesperson doesn’t care about you at all but is just trying to get your money.  Am I right?

Trusted People to People selling is not about manipulating or pushing people into buying things they may not need or want.

It’s about connecting with people, getting to know them, understanding them and finding a fit. A much more informative, enjoyable and profitable experience for both parties.

It may seem counter intuitive but actually by putting your client’s needs before your own you are much more likely to make the sale and make it a bigger and longer lasting one too.

So what is involved in putting your client’s needs first?

Understand Them

Understand them, their problems and issues and build rapport in a trusted relationship

A lot of sales people have Star profiles and this is the best profile for attracting others, communicating the message. In their enthusiasm and excitement Stars may get carried away and lead a conversation with their new product.

Instead of this some key questions, putting the spotlight on the prospect, not themselves, would give greater insight into what the client wants first before proposing a solution.

That way the prospect feels listened to, cared about, and will be more open to your suggestions and advice tailored to their own needs, than a general “pitch” about the products that may not have taken their needs into account. In other words, don’t lead with a seller offer but with a buyer need. And you won’t know what that buyer need is until you’ve listened to them and asked them key questions

Create Value

Ask not what you can profit from your client but what value you can bring to your client?

Once you have understood their problems you can decide whether and how you can help them with it and where your value sits with their problem.

This whole process is accelerated when you know their Talent Dynamic profile as you immediately know what is important to them; – Dynamos want to feel significant, Blazes need variety, Tempos want to feel connected and Steels want assurance and security, so you can tailor your response to answer those needs.

Some clients may think they know what they want but by digging deeper to find what the real problem is, and not just taking their order, you will be giving them more value of your expertise and experience and potentially getting a bigger order from it.

I have worked with a lot of Stars who are proud of their sales record. However when they have realised the importance of listening first and putting the client first they have understood the sales they have lost and those orders they took that weren’t renewed.

Build the relationship first, the ongoing trust and value will then ensure you continue to do business for the long term.

I’ll give the final word to Stephen M.R Covey:

Nicci Bonfanti will be leading one of the Break- Out sessions at the Trust Conference on September 11th.


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Talent Dynamics Profile Test now also available in Norwegian!

We have finalised the translation of the Talent Dynamics Profile Test and report into Norwegian, which has just launched this month in Norway.

Huge thanks to Performance Consultants Victoria Aase and Ingunn Aursnes from Norway, who have handled the translations and the launch of Talent Dynamics there. If you have a company based in Norway, or are a Trainer/consultant in Norway, please do connect directly with Victoria and Ingunn for more information.

Click here to take the profile test in Norwegian today.

Its very exciting as we now have the Talent Dynamics profile test translated into Norwegian, Danish, Taiwanese and Japanese and we are currently working on a Spanish translation too!

 


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A Trader in Childcare: Emily’s Story

By Teejay Dowe

When Emily came to me recently it was because her confidence was at an all time low, her self-esteem in shreds, and she’d lost all vision and direction. All because of a bullying boss.

Emily had loved helping to bring up her baby brother, now 5 years old, and she was delighted when she got her dream job in childcare.

Unfortunately for Emily, a near miss situation at work sparked off a bullying spree by her boss and she felt she had no choice but to resign.  She got another job in childcare but her ex-boss continued to bully her: as a result her confidence was shot and she lost that job too. Now she was beginning to doubt whether childcare was for her, but she didn’t have any idea of what else she could do.

Taking the Profile Test

Emily discovered that when she took her Talent Dynamics for Young People profile she was a Trader profile. The more we delved into the description, the more she began to recognise herself.

At first she found it easier to recognise the challenges and struggles that Traders often face.  She agreed that she’s often more sensitive than other people and probably takes offence more quickly.  And she definitely recognised a very typical Trader trait, which is saying ‘yes’ when she really wants to say ‘no’.  We playfully put a strategy in place to help Lucy say ‘no’ more often.

When we turned to the Trader profile strengths, Emily also began to recognise herself in those.  She agreed that she really cared about people; that she loved to connect with people; and that she enjoyed taking care of people.  We explored this area in great depth, and because someone else had written down the words, she started to believe them.  For Traders seeing is believing.

The Results

Through the profile and our discussions, and perhaps because the challenges had resonated so strongly for her, she began to see that maybe she could have a career in childcare after all: that she had the right strengths.

Further evidence of her suitability for childcare came through exploring what she perceived as a lack of academic ability.  When we looked at her communication and learning preferences, we discovered that she learns through doing.  And that’s exactly how she helps the young children in her care to develop: by getting into the thick of it and doing things with them.

I was so happy to see the sadness lift from her bit by bit throughout the session, and by the time she left, her confidence was restored.  A week later I heard that she’d got into a great college course that’ll open up all sorts of opportunities for her.  She told me:

“I now realise that it’s okay to just be me and do the things that I want to do and also the things that make me happy when I do them rather than trying to change who I am just so that I can fit in … I am now living my life the way I want to and feeling much better because of it”


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Nicci’s Call: What is Blocking your Flow of Sales?

By Nicola Bonfanti – Talent Dynamics for Sales

Probably you!

I work with a lot of people who are great at what they do, have fabulous products or services to offer and have had a degree of success at the start of their business but for different reasons the number of new clients are drying up, they are not growing the business or getting the level of sales or income they feel they deserve and….. they are worried about being perceived as pushy or desperate if they were to make concerted sales efforts!

But today, people to people selling is not about manipulating or pushing people into buying things they may not need or want. It’s much more about connecting with people, understanding them and finding a fit. A much more informative and enjoyable experience for both parties.

There are three basic pre-requisites to being successful at selling which are open to ALL profile types:

  1. Believing in your services, products and yourself
  2. Understanding and caring about your prospects
  3. Being able to communicate what you sell to your target audience in a value-driven way to solve their problems.

This month’s blog will focus on the first of these.

Self Belief

If you’ve been thinking that sales has become more challenging, you’re right.

The basics are pretty much the same, but today’s business environment is more dynamic than ever. The competition is bigger, faster, stronger, and smarter than ever, and your clients are more educated, as well.

They are searching for information by themselves, and looking to salespeople not to show them different marketing materials and list features and benefits, but to understand their wants, needs, and business concerns from the customers’ perspective.

It is time to use an approach tailored to this new market, and for that you need a new skill set that combines sales skills, persuasion, psychology, and a good understanding of Talent Dynamics.

The Talent Dynamics report we have for ourselves is a great source of comfort – permission to be ourselves, identifying our talents and value to others but sometimes we need reminding of that and how to use that information to make more sales.

The Creator profile is great at spotting opportunities, of creating products, services and programmes that are innovative, unique and compelling. They can make recommendations that their clients will listen to and follow as they are trusted experts and can help the clients solve their problems.

Once a Creator remembers that and puts the client first – the client that needs these programmes – and not their own ego or fear of rejection then they make valued and trusted salespeople that the clients are attracted to.

The Creator (you’ll recognise her in the video below) has a fantastic service and product that she truly believed in and is really passionate about helping young people but there was something blocking her that was stopping her getting as much success as she deserved.

The block was herself – her fear of failure, of rejection of coming across as a pushy salesperson which would damage the credibility of what she was doing.  Once she remembered her talents and skills as a Creator and that her mission to help others was more important than her fear of rejection she was back in flow.

So if you are not getting the sales you deserve, start by looking in the mirror and really understanding yourself and believing in what you have to offer.

Nicci Bonfanti will be leading one of the Break- Out sessions at the Trust Conference on September 11th.


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DT’s Tower: The Delegation Game

You might have noticed over the last few months I have been interested in getting ‘stuff’ (technical term) done more efficiently and effectively.

Very Lordly! I have looked at both qualitative and quantitative data, identified the areas that need improvement (and got a blog post out of each one) and put it into practice.

Despite all this (and an improvement in productivity) I still have a lot to do…

…which means I’m going to have to (deep breath) delegate.

Its not that I hate delegating.  I can understand that tasks can be performed best by people who are good at them and if they enjoy them so much the better as this will get them into flow.

I’m just not very good at it 🙁

(cue violin music)

Can’t Delegate, Won’t Delegate

Its not that I’m a ‘micro manager’, a label that gets applied to Lords quite a bit with their desire to control, natural caution, organisation and focus on the detail.  I’m more than happy for people to use their initiative and focus on the result.

Where I get unstuck is that I struggle with the people side of the delegation game.  I recently retook my profile test and I want to share the graph with you.  You might see what I mean…

Do not adjust your screen… I really DO have 0% in Blaze energy, the people and communication side of the Talent Dynamics square.  I’ll try and break down what goes on in my head (you have been warned).

  1. Delegation is not something that naturally pops onto my radar.  Unlike a Supporter I never consider “who would enjoy this and get a great result”.  The task or tasks are what sticks with me as objective things that need to be done.
  2. With my Lordly ways I break down the task automatically into many different aspects that inform what needs to be done.  This trips me up whenever I need to communicate the task as I overcomplicate it.
  3. Objectivity is useful but not when delegating.  I have the knack sometimes of sucking all the fun or excitement out of a task.  People aren’t often excited by the task I share which obviously affects motivation.
  4. Being introverted, rather than delegate first, I delegate last as it really drains me of energy.  What this means is that I lose a valuable portion of time when ‘stuff’ (technical term remember) could be done but it isn’t happening as I haven’t shared it.
  5. When time is pressing the Lord in me takes control, I have all the information, I know what needs to be done, I am in the best place to get the task complete.  This can very quickly turn into a vicious circle of “won’t delegate = can’t delegate”

What can a Lord do?

I welcome your suggestions to help with the Delegation Game.  The obvious answer and the best is to get a Supporter to do it.  They live for this.  However, that isn’t an option right now.

The approach I am taking is looking at delegation as a process (moving me into Flow).  I am an avid fan of flowcharts and when looking into delegation I found this.

So I am clearly at step 1.  I am doing and I realise that I need to delegate.

From my point of view however, there is an element of complexity.  In order to hand over the task I need to identify what tasks need to be delegated, what goes into the task and who is best suited.  I can handle the objective skills but I’m going to need to have to move out of flow a little in order to see if people are interested in doing the work (rather than just sending an email with instructions).

Its going to be … interesting.  Until the end of the process I will be working out of flow BUT once the process is complete I should have more time to focus on those areas which require my Lord strengths.  In addition I will be helping move other members of my team into flow by playing to their strengths

I am going to have to work really hard to put the delegation front and centre, doing it first before ANYTHING else 🙂

 

 


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Osmaan’s Observations: Opposites Attract

I’ve heard the saying ‘opposites attract’ when it comes to finding that special ‘one’, who you’d want to spend the rest of your life with.   But the same is also so true for me when it comes to my clients.

As I looked through my schedule for the week ahead, it struck me just how many of my current small business coaching clients are Creators and Stars!

To a Trader like me it could seem like they are from a far away planet.

The way they naturally think and act is so different from me.  But instead I truly get a buzz from working closely with them.

Dynamo Buzz

It’s because we are like ‘ying’ & ‘yang’.

They’re super innovative and always have so many ideas of what they could do.

I love seeing their reaction when ask I ask them – “when are you going to do it by?’ – it’s like I’ve sworn at them at times.

Instead of standing at the top of the ‘skyscraper’; admiring the view from there and thinking about all the potentials that are out there, Traders like to be at ground level and are very practical minded.

Typically if left to their own devices or without super self-discipline, a Creator or Star’s amazing visions can remain as an idea before the next spark of inspiration hits them (& then the next).

But you can’t really take an ‘idea’ to the bank to get cashed, can you now?

Tempo Reality

So I love helping these talented individuals to take their ideas and do some real stuff with them, so they have a greater chance of happening.

“Yes sometimes it can feel less ‘fun’ for them when they’re having to focus upon the nitty-gritty planning and execution stages. The same can be said for me, when given a blank piece of paper and attempting to come up the next new or novel idea!”

However, when you remember that we don’t have to do it all ourselves and that we use each other’s talents, then things can really start flowing more easily.  And that’s where the real magic is, as when you help other people to get into flow – they help you get into flow too!

What else could you ask for?


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