Slow Down … to Enjoy Life.

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Excerpts from a forwarded mail. It was written by someone who works at Volvo in Sweden, and he mentions how any project in the company “takes 2 years to be finalized, even if the idea is simple and brilliant. It’s a rule.”

Apparently the fast-paced global corporate world, focused on immediate results, “contrasts greatly with the slow movements of the Swedish. They, on the other hand, debate, debate, debate, hold x quantity of meetings and work with a slowdown scheme. At the end, this always yields better results.”

He relates the following story:

The first time I was in Sweden, one of my colleagues picked me up at the hotel every morning. It was September, bit cold and snowy. We would arrive early at the company and he would park far away from the entrance (2000 employees drive their car to work). The first day, I didn’t say anything, either the second or third. One morning I asked, “Do you have a fixed parking space? I’ve noticed we park far from the entrance even when there are no other cars in the lot.” To which he replied, “Since we’re here early we’ll have time to walk, and whoever gets in late will be late and need a place closer to the door. Don’t you think? Imagine my face. 

He goes on to talk about a movement in Europe named Slow Food, which “establishes that people should eat and drink slowly, with enough time to taste their food, spend time with the family, friends, without rushing. Slow Food is against its counterpart: the spirit of Fast Food and what it stands for as a lifestyle.”

I love this idea. It is what is at the heart of the simplicity movement, as well as those who are trying to live frugal lives. It’s not just a matter of reducing clutter or saving money … it’s a matter of slowing down to enjoy life more, of savoring life’s simple pleasures, of rejecting on some level the materialistic culture we are all caught up in and embracing fellow humans instead. It is about changing our values and priorities.

He goes on:

Basically, the movement questions the sense of “hurry” and “craziness” generated by globalization, fueled by the desire of “having in quantity” (life status) versus “having with quality”, “life quality” or the “quality of being”. French people, even though they work 35 hours per week, are more productive than Americans or British. Germans have established 28.8 hour workweeks and have seen their productivity been driven up by 20%. This slow attitude has brought forth the US’s attention, pupils of the fast and the “do it now!”.

This no-rush attitude doesn’t represent doing less or having a lower productivity. It means working and doing things with greater quality, productivity, perfection, with attention to detail and less stress. It means reestablishing family values, friends, free and leisure time. Taking the “now”, present and concrete, versus the “global”, undefined and anonymous. It means taking humans’ essential values, the simplicity of living.

It stands for a less coercive work environment, more happy, lighter and more productive where humans enjoy doing what they know best how to do. It’s time to stop and think on how companies need to develop serious quality with no-rush that will increase productivity and the quality of products and services, without losing the essence of spirit.

Many of us live our lives running behind time, but we only reach it when we die of a heart attack or in a car accident rushing to be on time. Others are so anxious of living the future that they forget to live the present, which is the only time that truly exists. We all have equal time throughout the world. No one has more or less. The difference lies in how each one of us does with our time. We need to live each moment. As John Lennon said, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans”.

I found a cool site called Slow Down Now that offers some tips for slowing down, including:

  1. Have a cup of tea, put your feet up and stare out of the window. Warning: don’t try this while driving.
  2. Spend some quality time in the bathtub.
  3. Write down these words and place them where you can see them, “Multitasking is a Moral Weakness.”
  4. Try to do only one thing at a time.

The 6 Stages of Successful Lead Management.

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What makes a lead management process successful? There’s no easy answer. In the real world implementing lead management requires a degree of science, art and consensus. But that doesn’t mean there are no road signs along the way. If you are considering implementing a lead management process, here are 6 Stages of Lead Management Implementation to give you a sense of what to expect

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5 Tips For Sponsoring Virtual Events.

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Like the paperless office or the Segway, the advent of virtual events came with predictions that the physical trade show would go the way of the dodo bird.

But reality is often less dire. Physical events still hold too much star power, glitz and glamour to be entirely replaced by their virtual counterparts. But low price tags – not to mention the lack of travel expenses – has turned online events into a hot space. In fact, virtual event trade shows and conferences are expected to generate $18.6 billion by 2015, according to Market Research Media.

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6 Sure-fire Ways to Segment.

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How relevant your message or offer is to the recipient determines the likelihood of a response.  In fact, the number one reason for unsubscribes or opt-outs is, you guessed it, irrelevant messaging. So how can marketers make sure we are delivering conversion-driving, erosion-avoiding offers?  We start with effective segmentation. To help get y ou started, following are six sure-fire ways to segment:

  • Segment by lead source
    Where did the lead come from? A tradeshow, online ad, webinar, contact us form, an inbound call?
  • Segment by behavioral criteria
    Examples include activity on your website, click-throughs from your email, responses to specific offers and event attendance.
  • Segment by lead stage
    Where they are in the buying cycle? Have they just raised their hand as an inquiry? Are they further down the funnel as a marketing qualified lead? Has sales accepted them and they are an Opportunity or are they already a Customer?
  • Segment by contact type
    Based on who they are to your organization you will need to segment. For instance, prospect vs. customer vs. partner vs. vendor vs. employee.
  • Segment by demographic information
    Based on your business model you may have things like job function, geography, industry, company size.
  • And finally, Segment by past purchase history
    This helps you understand what they’ve purchased – product, version, solutions, etc. and then what you can renew, cross-sell, up-sell or communicate about.

And keep in mind that most effective segmentation strategies will use a combined approach. The more data you have (target fit criteria and digital body language), the more complete your profile and segmentation strategy will be…further driving relevance.

Remember, relevance drives conversion!

Revenue Performance Management: The Next Frontier of Competitive Advantage.

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RPM is a systematic approach to identifying the drivers and impediments to revenue, rigorously measuring them, and then pulling the economic levers that will optimize top line growth.  Many fast-growing companies manage their interactions with buyers through the entire purchase process, tracking and understanding their prospects’ digital body language.  The result?  Dramatically more predictable, rapid and profitable revenue growth, putting these businesses miles ahead of their competition

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Nine data prep lessons for advanced analytics.

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According to a recent survey from TDWI Research, 38 percent of organizations are practicing advanced analytics today, whereas 85 percent say they will be within three years. Why the dramatic upsurge in advanced analytics? It’s driven by organizations’ need to understand constantly changing business environments (as seen in the recent recession and its aftermath), as well as to discover opportunities for cost reductions and new sales targets (keys to surviving a down economy).

Organizations will face challenges as they move into advanced analytics. Many don’t understand that reporting and analytics are different practices, often with different data requirements. This checklist is designed to help by listing and explaining data requirements that are unique to advanced analytics

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CRM Fails at Times – Who’s to blame?

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CRM fails at times – myth /fact? The truth is that CRM failures is a sure thing if not properly implemented. Despite the fact that the staggering statistics show all is well in the CRM arena and that it is bound to grow immensely, it is not the case. CRM is riddled with pitfalls and any improper implementation is definite to have disastrous results.

CRM does fail in some instances. That cannot be disputed. CRM reviews show that the failure rates of CRM could reach a high of an amazing 80% in a few years time. That’s entirely in contravention of all the highs that have been predicted right? It just evidences the fact that if CRM is to be employed it has to be done with the utmost caution exercised and with full attention to implementation.

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