COVID19 "Remote Working" Day Two of Sales

 

Today is the day!

Spent most of the morning prepping for two on-line meetings from about 8AM-10AM.  I wanted to make sure I had shot at getting at least one of these in before the end of the month. Both are with two existing accounts. My first meeting was 11AM, my second was set for 2PM.  I also spent about and hour getting connected to Microsoft Teams which is also one of our requirements while working remotely. More to come on this.

Just about 10:AM I received an email from my 2PM and he had to bug out, just too much going on with staff working from home and the virus. I wasn't surprised, nor was I upset, I thanked him and we agreed to touch base next week.  Thirty minutes later I confirmed with my 11AM and they needed to reschedule also, claimed they were swamped with plans and procedures.

Alright, now I have the full day ahead of me.  It was time to finish some of those learning tasks that we were assigned to our team on Monday. Those tasks included listening to 7 recorded webinars from my friends from Ricoh.

In the past if you wanted to do some additional training you would pull out the brochure and read it from top to bottom. After you were finished you would read it again because years ago it was all about specs, speeds and feeds. The better you knew you device equaled having the leg up on the competition. That leg up is always something I've tried to have.

I was able to digest three of the webinars about the Ricoh IM (intelligent machine) series.  Even though I though I knew them inside and out, there was some ah ha moments with some of the advanced functionality.  Thus I felt that the time I used before lunch was extremely helpful.  One thing you can never stop doing in sales is to stop learning.  Reminds of my first job at a produce company where I was caught by the owner several times with my hands in my pockets. I was told there is always something to do get your hands out of your pockets and figure it out.  Even in sales if you're not selling there is always something to do.

Lunchtime yay!  The routine now is to go downstairs take our dog for a walk, prep lunch and then watch the news.  All day yesterday I had the news on in my office, today I turned it off because there is no good news.  After digesting all bad news for about thirty minutes it was back to work.

My afternoon went pretty fast because I had to prep documents for an order and then had an ongoing email exchange with the CEO for most of the afternoon.  After I sent the final docs I received an email at 4:59PM telling me that his IT department was also checking on copiers and he needs to digest that information.  I was hoping we could have finished that up today but what's another day right now?

While in and out of the email exchange I also put in time to research the specialty print deal that I'm working on.  Like I stated yesterday I needed a fall back position just in case my first recommendation does not fly.  We were able to schedule a call for tomorrow and hoping I can move this opportunity closer to home.

I did quit my day early because the wife and I had to go to my sons house for his wife's birthday.  Believe it or not we left early because of the 8PM - 5AM curfew that's in effect in New Jersey. 

I live on a highway in New Jersey and there's always some sort of traffic on the road at any given time.  When I arrived home I took our dog for her walk to her favorite park. I do this every evening after dinner, tonight felt like one of those snow nights. That's when there's a lot of snow on the road and there's zero traffic. No cars, and no people for the entire walk, not that the walk is long but for 20 minutes there was nothing but silence.

Tomorrow?  More time to finish up those webinars and then I move to scrubbing my CRM. Can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to that.  Friday will prove to be my fun day with prospecting, stay tuned!

-=Good Selling=-

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SalesServiceGuy posted:

The rules of video conferencing at home

Many workers are taking business meetings from their living rooms or kitchens these days.

The rules of vdeo conferencing at home - CNN

With a growing number of companies asking employees to work from home due to coronavirus, video conferencing has allowed workers to continue having meetings. It also satisfies the social interaction many workers start to crave when they are working from home. But it can feel a little awkward letting people get a glimpse into our homes.

Here's what you need to know about remote video conferencing:

Dress casually, but appropriately

Follow your company's culture when it comes to your attire for video calls.

Some workers will be expected to keep the same attire they wear in the office, while for many others, it's acceptable to dress more comfortably than they usually do at work. But comfortable doesn't mean pajamas (at least not on top).

"Tailor your appearance to the person you are working or dealing with," recommended Jacqueline Whitmore, business etiquette expert and founder of The Protocol School of Palm Beach.
But don't get too wrapped up in your appearance.

"I think people are more forgiving around these times of desperate measures," said Whitmore. "The etiquette might not be as stringent."

Get over your fear

Video calls work best when everyone gets on.

"We are all in this socially awkward situation together," said Peter Arvai, co-founder and CEO of presentation software company Prezi.

And if some employees are in the office, everyone should still call in separately on their own device with a camera so you can see everyone clearly.

"You want a good view of every participant," said Arvai. "You don't want to see a few people with their mini heads, that doesn't work."

Don't sweat your background too much

If you have space in your home for a home office, that certainly makes it a lot easier to find a place to join a video call.

But for people living in smaller dwellings, the home office could be the kitchen table, sofa or the bedroom -- and that's ok.

Look for a background that is not distracting and put away any personal items that might be embarrassing or you want to keep private.

And don't worry about any sports memorabilia, vacation photos or movie posters hanging on the wall. "Use those things to establish the human connections," said Arvai.

However, if you are meeting with a new or potential client, take the time to look more put together, Whitmore said. "If you need to make a first impression, don't do it in your bedroom in your bed surrounded by your covers."

Find the light

Light is your friend when it comes to looking good and getting the most out of a video call.

"What matters the most is to be able to see the facial expressions," said Arvai. "If you can, sit by the window to have the light on your face, that creates a much better experience for others."

Make introductions

Make sure meeting participants introduce themselves if everyone doesn't know one another, advised Aruna Ravichandran, vice president and chief marketing officer of Cisco's Webex Collaboration business.

"Remote work is all about personalization and getting people comfortable to be able to have a conversation," she said.

Limit your distractions

You know how annoying it is when someone is constantly looking at their phone or typing on their laptop during in-person meetings? It's just as distracting in video meetings.

"It can be disrespectful to other folks when you are constantly multitasking," said Ravichandran.

Turn off any notifications and any other programs that might tempt you to do something else during the meeting.

"You want to keep some level of decorum when working from home," said Whitmore.

And remember: The mute button is your friend. If you aren't talking, be on mute. No one wants to hear you munching on your mid-morning snack.

Just be sure to give people a few seconds to unmute themselves to respond to a question or chime in.

The meeting facilitator should give a reminder at the top of the meeting for people to mute to help avoid interruptions throughout the meeting.

@SalesServiceGuy this is awesome!!

The rules of video conferencing at home

Many workers are taking business meetings from their living rooms or kitchens these days.

The rules of vdeo conferencing at home - CNN

With a growing number of companies asking employees to work from home due to coronavirus, video conferencing has allowed workers to continue having meetings. It also satisfies the social interaction many workers start to crave when they are working from home. But it can feel a little awkward letting people get a glimpse into our homes.

Here's what you need to know about remote video conferencing:

Dress casually, but appropriately

Follow your company's culture when it comes to your attire for video calls.

Some workers will be expected to keep the same attire they wear in the office, while for many others, it's acceptable to dress more comfortably than they usually do at work. But comfortable doesn't mean pajamas (at least not on top).

"Tailor your appearance to the person you are working or dealing with," recommended Jacqueline Whitmore, business etiquette expert and founder of The Protocol School of Palm Beach.
But don't get too wrapped up in your appearance.

"I think people are more forgiving around these times of desperate measures," said Whitmore. "The etiquette might not be as stringent."

Get over your fear

Video calls work best when everyone gets on.

"We are all in this socially awkward situation together," said Peter Arvai, co-founder and CEO of presentation software company Prezi.

And if some employees are in the office, everyone should still call in separately on their own device with a camera so you can see everyone clearly.

"You want a good view of every participant," said Arvai. "You don't want to see a few people with their mini heads, that doesn't work."

Don't sweat your background too much

If you have space in your home for a home office, that certainly makes it a lot easier to find a place to join a video call.

But for people living in smaller dwellings, the home office could be the kitchen table, sofa or the bedroom -- and that's ok.

Look for a background that is not distracting and put away any personal items that might be embarrassing or you want to keep private.

And don't worry about any sports memorabilia, vacation photos or movie posters hanging on the wall. "Use those things to establish the human connections," said Arvai.

However, if you are meeting with a new or potential client, take the time to look more put together, Whitmore said. "If you need to make a first impression, don't do it in your bedroom in your bed surrounded by your covers."

Find the light

Light is your friend when it comes to looking good and getting the most out of a video call.

"What matters the most is to be able to see the facial expressions," said Arvai. "If you can, sit by the window to have the light on your face, that creates a much better experience for others."

Make introductions

Make sure meeting participants introduce themselves if everyone doesn't know one another, advised Aruna Ravichandran, vice president and chief marketing officer of Cisco's Webex Collaboration business.

"Remote work is all about personalization and getting people comfortable to be able to have a conversation," she said.

Limit your distractions

You know how annoying it is when someone is constantly looking at their phone or typing on their laptop during in-person meetings? It's just as distracting in video meetings.

"It can be disrespectful to other folks when you are constantly multitasking," said Ravichandran.

Turn off any notifications and any other programs that might tempt you to do something else during the meeting.

"You want to keep some level of decorum when working from home," said Whitmore.

And remember: The mute button is your friend. If you aren't talking, be on mute. No one wants to hear you munching on your mid-morning snack.

Just be sure to give people a few seconds to unmute themselves to respond to a question or chime in.

The meeting facilitator should give a reminder at the top of the meeting for people to mute to help avoid interruptions throughout the meeting.

I was in a food broker warehouse and a sleep apnea clinic today installing new copiers.

You can video conference all you want but some industries that require the manufacturer or trade of physical goods do not lend themselves to the digital life.

Nevertheless, I feel that video conferencing is a vital new skill to learn as long as the Corona Virus pandemic exits. We can talk to customers on the phone, we can email them but often now we cannot meet them in person.

Of course, you cannot turn a screwdriver or replace a stripped gear on a copier via the internet.

I also think that older more unreliable copiers will be replaced faster because the on-site service levels that customers have come to expect to keep their old clunkers going are just not going to be there.

By the way, at the sleep apnea clinic, everywhere I went in that office, everything I touched, they had to sanitize after I left. For me and for every customer who walked in the front door.

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