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Selling Cloud, IT, and Telecom in the Midst of an Avalanche

Earlier this month I completed Mountain Alpine Guides’ Level 1 Avalanche Course in Bozeman. It was three days of classroom instruction coupled with field session in the backcountry of Hyalite Canyon and areas in Yellowstone National Park. And, well, it was awesome! Those that know me well, however, know that the classroom instruction part was agonizing. Don’t get me wrong, the class time was extremely informative but I prefer to just jump right in and get my hands dirty. That said, one of the things I learned in the classroom was that jumping right in isn’t always the best plan. Who knew?

Slow is smooth, smooth is fast

During the class, we talked about the idea of “slow is smooth, smooth is fast.” For those unfamiliar with the concept, it means that when we move too fast or rush things, we often end up making major mistakes. In the case of avalanche rescue, the smallest error could yield fatal consequences. Yet, this idea of “slow is smooth, smooth is fast” wasn’t born in the snowy mountains of Montana. In fact, the concept has its roots in the military where they teach recruits that by being careful and deliberate, you are actually moving as fast as possible without needlessly risking your life or missing your target (queue Mark Walburg). Marathon runners also use this methodology to improve performance by practicing at reduced speeds in order to actually go faster when they go “all out.”

But this is business, not the mountains

You might be thinking to yourself – “I’m not a skier, in the military, or a marathon runner. What does this have to do with me?” But as businesspeople, we have to face the unfortunate reality that most of us are inherently impatient. Whether you’re rolling out a new product or kicking off a marketing campaign, a rush job is almost never going to yield an ideal outcome. The hurry to roll out a new service can often result in shoddy customer experience and eventually a loss of customers. In the same manner, taking a rapid-fire approach to sales and marketing strategies usually ends up looking chaotic and ill-planned. If this isn’t bad enough, we tend to exacerbate the issue by expecting a quick ROI that we can report back to stakeholders.

So what are we to do? In a world of “if you’re not first, you’re last,” the slow and smooth approach seems a bit counterproductive, right? Wrong. In the end, the person who gets it done right wins. Taking your time ensures that person is you!

Be purposeful with your plan

Your sales and marketing plan is just that – yours! Don’t base your plan of attack of what others are doing. Instead set realistic goals that make sense for your business and help you move the needle.

Be deliberate with your audience

Take the time to develop personas and segment your prospects and customers. In doing so, you give yourself a better chance to create targeted messaging and deliver the rifle shot rather than a “spray and pray” campaign that falls flat.

Be patient with your results

Great things take time to develop and yield positive results. In the technology world, it takes time to develop the relationship, build trust, and eventually close a deal. So, don’t bail out before you have a chance to see the plan come to fruition.

Doing it right, gets the win

In the end, the person who gets it done right wins. Take your time ensures that person is you! Need some help planning out 2019 and developing the “smooth is slow, slow is fast” mindset? Carve can help. Just give us a call or shoot us an email and let’s talk about how we can help.