The Coaching Effect Blog

Is Your Career A Snapshot or Movie?

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

August 17, 2011

Guest Blog Post by our friends and Pillar Partner Selling To Zebras written by Brent Nauer in Selling to Zebras. This article is inspired by a recent publishing in Harvard Business Review “Can You Handle Failure”. Failure isn’t something that most Sales Managers are open to discussing, yet it offers a revelatory glimpse into characteristics of successful individuals and leaders.

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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner

Research Reveals Secrets to Selling to Senior Executives

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

July 11, 2011

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Topics: Best Practice, EcSELL Institute Partner, c-level, Sales Strategy, sales methodology & sales skills development

Identify Accountability Problems in a Sales Department

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

May 11, 2011

Danita Bye, president of Sales Growth Specialist is our Pillar Partner and guest blogger today. Learn essential tips that help a Sales Manager develop accountablity within his/her sales organization. Also, what clues indicate an accountablity problem.

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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner, Accountability Coaching, sales rep peformance

Pause, Listen, Reflect, Learn. Do You?

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

May 9, 2011

Today we are sharing a blog post from The Competitive Edge written by our wonderful Pillar Partner Patrick Sweeney of Caliper Corp.  Patrick spoke at our Fall 2010 Sales Coaching Summit and has been a feature instructor for our monthly sales management webinar series.  His message speaks volumes about the importance of continuous growth and development for you and your sales management team.

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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner, executive sales management, professional development for sales management, Leadership & Management, top performing sales organizations, sales leadership best practices

How to Give Your Sales Team an Olympic Edge

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

April 8, 2011


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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner, Emotional Intelligence, Sales Coaching Summit, sales coaching, sales performance

Client satisfaction DOES NOT EQUAL Loyalty!

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

April 7, 2011

EcSELL Institute Sales Coaching Summit Session Summary

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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner, Sales Coaching Summit, sales department assessement, sales coaching, assessment tools, ideas for sales leaders

5 Predictors of Sales Rep Turnover

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

January 10, 2011

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner, Sales Coaching Summit, sales coaching, sales rep peformance, talent identification & acquisition, 6 Pillars of Sales Productivity

Which sales rep should get your attention-top or bottom?

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

January 6, 2011

Our Pillar Partner Caliper Corp has just kicked off their new blog called "The Competitive Edge".  It provides insight and strategies on hiring and developing top team talent. Caliper was one of EcSELL Institute's instructors at our fall 2010 Sales Leadership and Sales Coaching Summit. (Check out our Spring Sales Coaching Summit)

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Topics: talent identification & acquistion, EcSELL Institute Partner, sales coaching, sales rep peformance, ideas for sales leaders

What's Up With Inside Sales?

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

December 29, 2010

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker, EcSELL Institute

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Topics: EcSELL Institute Partner, Inside Sales, Resources for sales managers, ideas for sales leaders

Stop Competing on Price

Posted by Jaime Davis-Thomas

November 22, 2010

Stop Competing on Price

Written by EcSELL Institute's friend,  Howard Shore, Executive and Business Coach. We hope you enjoy it!

It is not unusual to find companies that have made a lot of changes to the business only to find that those changes had little impact on its ability to increase market share, or worse yet, caused market share to decline. It is also common to go into companies and find only a small percentage of their clients/consumers showing loyalty. The predominant discussions among their salespeople revolve around price. Many business owners mistakenly believe there is nothing that can be done to change client/consumer focus on price.

Declining market share, stable market share, and disloyal clients/consumers mean that a company does not have a suitable strategy or that its strategy is not being executed well. There are some companies whose strategy is to have the lowest prices in the marketplace (e.g. Walmart), and they have the scale, systems, and infrastructure to continually keep costs lower than their competition, allowing them to earn a sizeable profit because of the volume they generate. As long as a company has the capacity and/or can find enough vendors willing to put products on their shelves so that price/volume mix is worth the return on effort, it is a good business model. The challenge is that this is a tough place to play. Technology is constantly changing, and many businesses find that there is always someone willing to sell cheaper. So then what?

People often spend more time figuring out how to build their fantasy football teams, plan their vacations, and handle other unimportant matters than they spend on building their business strategy. While strategic planning is more difficult and is likely to result in some mistakes, not putting the proper time into strategy is inexcusable. Business strategy should be revisited at least quarterly in every business. Most companies do not make the time, and it costs them millions in future revenue and profits that they’ll never see.

A big part of building a strategy that helps avoid price competition is having the ability to segment the potential client/consumer base and target ownership of specific segments. The more segments you want to own, the higher your cost structure. The better you position and execute your segment ownership plan, the more you will grow. The key to segmentation is not looking at market segments by customer size, geography, industry group, or other traditional demographics. The key is to look them by the need or want that your company can best serve. Here are some examples:

  • Are they the type of customer that only looks for lowest price, no matter what?
  • Are you in the hospitality business, and are they looking to be pampered?
  • Are you in the fitness business? Are your target customers the ones whose doctors have told them that they will die before they are 40 if they do not trim 40 pounds?
  • Are you in the hearing aid business? Are your target customers those who have lost their hearing and are very sensitive about the issue and want to do business with people that understand their pain and can provide them with a proper experience to deal with this sensitive issue?
  • Are you in the transportation, freight forwarding, and logistics industry, and your clients are always squeezing you for lowest price? Could you charge them a lot more and still save them a lot of money if you helped them solve the inefficiencies in their logistics functions?

When developing your strategy, you must understand the potential marketplace at least 3 years out and project how you think your industry is changing in terms of products, customers, technology, delivering products and services, sophistication of employees, and other pertinent matters. Once you have considered these factors, you need to segment the different types of clients you have and which segments you want to own. Then you need to build your strategy to own them. If you are primarily competing on pricing and do not own any segment today, you have a tremendous opportunity to improve your growth and profits. Just take the time to build a winning strategy.


Great article, thanks Howard.  If you enjoyed this, you might also find the article "Creating Willing Buyers" interesting as well. This white paper comes from our Resource Library and is a small sample of the way we keep our members abreast of the latest research, technology, tools,and best practices in sales management. As the sales coach, it will be your job to make sure your reps are prepared to sell solutions, not compete on price.  Need some help with this? That's what we are here for!  Call us anytime 402-850-4239. Just ask for Will.



Howard Shore is a business growth expert that works with companies that want to maximize their growth potential by improving strategy, enhancing their knowledge, and improving motivation. To contact Howard Shore please call (305) 722-7216 or email him at .

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Topics: sales producer, EcSELL Institute Partner, sales coaching, Pillars, sales methodology & sales skills development

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