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Want to boost sales? This one thing can make it happen.

June 8, 2022

From the first overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft to the first active NBA player to become a billionaire — what can’t LeBron James do?

In this week’s edition:

  • Tips for building a high-performance team. 
  • Making fast and furious sales with the right training platforms. 
  • Becoming a serial entrepreneur.
  • Managing COVID-related burnout within your business.


Want a high-performing team? Foster these 6 traits.

Group of people sitting at computers in an office.

Some teams just have that “it” factor — like the ‘72 Miami Dolphins or the Average Joe’s. Within a company, that “it” factor might look like a team that shares the same vision, consistently exceeds performance goals, and genuinely (gasp!) enjoys each other’s company. That’s essentially the definition of a high-performance team, a group of goal-focused individuals with specialized expertise and complementary skills who collaborate, innovate and produce consistently superior results.

The question is: why are some teams high-performing while others struggle? Or, why do some simply work while others seem constantly at odds?

Great question. Care to elaborate?
Sure. While no two teams are exactly alike, most of them can credit their success to a shared set of values or traits. Here are the top six characteristics of a high-performing team along with tips on how you can foster them amongst your employees:

  1. Diversity and inclusivity. The more diverse a team is, the more innovation and creativity its members bring to the table. And the more inclusive their work environment (where each person has equal access to resources and opportunities and feels safe and respected), the more engaged they become. Why is engagement a big deal? Companies that have engaged employees in their ranks outperform the competition by a whopping 147%. So, if you’re aiming to build a high-performing team, think diversity, inclusivity, engagement.
  2. Trust. How can a team work together and achieve performance targets when they don’t trust one another? If your company is experiencing common signs of mistrust, such as low employee retention, a lack of communication, or even toxic communication (like, gossiping), then you might want to consider finding ways to solve the problem. Some solutions include practicing transparency (from the top down) and planning team-building exercises that focus on open communication and collaboration.

👉 See all six traits.


Looking to boost sales? Invest in a sales training platform.

A man sitting at a computer with "Sales Team Onboarding" on the screen.

Let’s say you’re bringing on a new sales agent.
It's tempting to let them hit the ground running and start making sales ASAP. The faster they get started, the sooner they’re generating revenue. Makes sense right?

But it’s actually in your and your new hire’s best interests to get them into a comprehensive onboarding program. Not only will this program set your newest agent up for speed and efficiency, but employees who have exceptional onboarding experiences are 2.6 times as likely to be extremely satisfied with their workplace — meaning they’ll be more keen to stay and recruit other sales agents.

And the best way to onboard new sales agents? A sales training platform.

Why this specific type of platform?
In just about any industry, onboarding means providing training on the processes, policies, and procedures that run your business. Arguably, you can do that in any old-school training manual.

But when it comes to sales, how do you teach the art of closing the deal? The persuasive techniques and communication strategies that separate low performers from high-performance sellers? You want a training platform that your employees can access 24/7 for all their need-to-knows and how-tos — ones designed specifically for fast and efficient sales.

So, which is the best platform?
There are hundreds (if not thousands) of sales training platforms to choose from. But we can help you narrow down the list. For platforms that can positively impact your team’s sales, here are some features to look out for:

  • Personalization and customization tools.
  • Analytics, reporting dashboards, and behind-the-curtain methods of tracking and monitoring performance.
  • Place and capacity to showcase your company culture and the competitive sales landscape.
  • Gamification features.

👉 Need a sales training platform? Try Trainual for free!


The best tips for becoming a serial entrepreneur

Who are serial entrepreneurs?
A serial entrepreneur is someone who starts multiple businesses. This might look like selling or stepping back from one business to start another, or running multiple businesses at a time.

Who’s most likely to become a serial entrepreneur?
As you might imagine, there’s a certain “type” of person who’s more likely to try and launch multiple companies. They often have a strong vision, problem-solving attitude, high drive, adventurous spirit, and restless curiosity.

A man saying, "It sounds like a lot of work, but okay."

While you might be inclined to see serial entrepreneurship as rare and out of reach, almost one-third of self-employed people report that they’ve run more than one business.

How to become a serial entrepreneur:
If the idea of shooting for multiple stars piques your interest, here are a few pointers for getting started:

  • Pick an industry. While you can be active in several unrelated industries, it’s easier to start out pursuing ventures (and soaking up as much knowledge as you can) in the industry you understand the best. 
  • Evaluate your ideas. Next, “socialize” your business ideas. Meaning, ask your family, friends, and people in your target market for feedback. You might hear comments like, “it already exists” — and you can always make adjustments. But if you think you’ve got a great idea on your hands, don’t be afraid to follow your instincts. 
  • Get going. The early stages of serial entrepreneurship are filled with trial and error. The sooner you can take action and figure out what’s working (and what isn’t), the sooner you can adjust accordingly and keep moving forward.
  • Build a top-notch team. Be sure to hire and build up team members you can trust. Equip them with everything they need to support you in your journey — like all the company info, policies, and processes they need to hold down the fort while you’re off conquering other markets.


Why many SMB owners are dealing with COVID-related burnout

How are you feeling?
If you’ve been having problems sleeping or dealing with above average stress, you’re not alone. In a recent survey of small business owners by Capital One Business, 42% reported that they are currently experiencing burnout (or experienced it within the past month).

Burnout — AKA chronic stress that is not successfully managed — can have a negative impact on mental well-being and lead to feelings of exhaustion and resentment.

Why is this happening now?
In short, COVID. According to the survey, SMB owners are dealing with burnout “as a result of navigating pandemic-related disruptions and fluctuating mandates across the country for nearly two years.”

And once you add in recent problems like rising inflation, supply chain issues, and labor shortages, it’s easy to understand why business owners are feeling overwhelmed.

A tired man saying, "I need a vacation."

I might be burned out. Can I do anything about it?
It can be tough for SMB owners to confront the idea of having burnout, especially because a good portion don’t have much help. More than 60% of SMB owners reported working longer hours, and 26% stated that their work-life balance is worse compared to pre-pandemic times. And 81% of small businesses have zero employees — meaning everything falls on the owner.

But there’s hope on the horizon. More than half of SMB owners expect their work-life balance to improve in the next six months; 59% are just as motivated (if not more so) to grow their businesses today compared to before the pandemic.

And healing burnout is completely possible! With some dedicated break time and a good support system, you can handle that burnout and get reinvested in the passion of growing your business.


This week’s highlight reel

  • Just say no. There may be 50 ways to leave your lover, but did you know there are at least 31 ways to tell somebody “no”? Use these 31 email templates to help you say “no” in just about any situation. Here’s looking at you, introverts.  
  • #FailArmy. Authenticity should be at the heart of any company’s diversity efforts. Just ask Wells Fargo, Netflix, and Walmart — they learned the hard way. Make sure your diversity initiatives avoid the same fate by learning from their mistakes.    
  • The artist formerly known as “Turkey.” Rebranding isn’t just for businesses (although we’ve got tips if you’re planning on one). Whole entire countries are getting in on the concept, too. Case in point: Türkiye (née Turkey). The country hopes that by changing its name, it can “strengthen its identity” and distance itself from certain… less-flattering associations (gobble, gobble — ahem). 
  • Taco ‘bout it. Good morning to everyone except the one person who bought 180 Mexican Pizzas in one go. Taco Bell is apparently facing a shortage of the beloved fan favorite. Sharing is caring, folks.


Here’s what else is on The Manual’s mind

Going for a drive? A run? Listen to the hottest podcasts to catch up on all things small business:

  • CEO and co-founder of Datapath, David Darmstandler, jumped on the Fastest Growing Companies podcast to explain how he doubled his business in just a few years. Learn how he did it.
  • Consultant Natalie Painchaud has over 18 years of experience helping other companies creatively solve problems. Get her five tips for cultivating innovation.
  • Adi Klevit, leader and visionary of Business Success Consulting Group, knows business documentation is important, but getting buy-in from the whole team is what makes the best processes stick. Don’t miss her on the Organize Chaos podcast this Friday, June 10.

Organize the chaos
of your small business