Thirty-six percent of small businesses are unable to find enough workers to fill vacant positions, tying the record high from November 2000, according to the National Federation of Independent Business' Research Center. In addition, 21% of small business owners reported that finding workers is their biggest challenge.
Following a digital transformation, proper training and consistent coaching can help representatives access important information and apps on the go to improve sales, suggests Tony Colon. Sales leaders need to address issues both above and below the "waterline" to make sure their reps are comfortable with the new technology, he writes.
When buyers "forget" key elements of agreements from previous meetings, it's important to call out the issue, discuss proper documentation to avoid future problems and get the conversation back on track, writes Mike Schultz. Similarly, sales representatives must not be intimidated if a buyer brings in a "bad cop" at some point who questions the price, the agreement or other closed issues.
Trade tensions between the US and China have accelerated growth in EU exports to Asia, writes Yuwa Hedrick-Wong. "While 326 million American consumers are increasingly 'protected' by Trump's tariff wall, over four billion consumers in Europe and Asia will thrive and enjoy more, better and cheaper products and services provided by competitive and creative businesses," Hedrick-Wong writes.
A flattening Treasury yield curve could indicate potential economic weakness, writes Patti Domm. Still, "not every flattening yield curve led to a recession," said Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Financial Group.
Small businesses can compete with chains, but they need to do more than rely on their local status. Offering superior service, knowing the local customer base and going the extra mile to serve customers and the community can help, writes Daniel Kline.
There are distinct advantages to having a partner in business, but differences in work style can produce friction. Kayla Sloan recommends five steps to avoid conflict, beginning with creating a clear mission statement to review every day.
Managers direct and control operations, whereas leaders inspire a shared vision, writes Cheryl Crumb. Leaders recognize that this "involves guiding [employees'] senses so they can perceive the possibilities and fill themselves with passion," she writes.
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