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  • March 16, 2021 6:37 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Today is International Women’s Day (IWD), an annual event to celebrate women’s rights and inspire people to continue to push for gender equality. This event, sanctioned by the United Nations, is a chance to address gender bias and take meaningful action to create a more inclusive and gender-equal world.

    March is also Women’s History Month, making this an ideal time to reflect on the vital contributions of women throughout the ages. Whether your team chooses to support women-owned businesses, contribute to charities benefitting women or get involved in some other way, this is your chance to celebrate the women on your sales team and in your organization.

    Susmita Sarma, a podcast host and content creator at Vantage Circle, has outlined some inspiring ideas to commemorate women. We share Sarma’s ideas in this issue of Promotional Consultant Today.

    1. Pile on the purple. Sarma notes that purple is the international color for uplifting women, signifying justice and dignity. You can set the stage for celebrating women all month long by encouraging your staff to wear purple.

    2. Show your appreciation. Use this month to show the women on your team how much you value their hard work and contributions. Write a personal note thanking your female reps for everything they do and consider giving them a gift card to an upscale restaurant or shop. For increased employee engagement, be sure you are offering desirable perks and benefits, adds Sarma.

    3. Plan a (virtual) ladies’ night. For a fun way to bring together all the women on your team, consider an evening of stand-up comedy from a favorite female comedian. You could also host a virtual watch party of a movie with strong female characters.

    4. Introduce family-friendly work-life balance policies. If your company could do a better job supporting working moms, now is the time to put some new policies in place. Could you work to get moms a more compassionate maternity leave or give them a more flexible schedule? Look for ways to give the working moms on your team some balance.

    5. Commit to empowering women. In honor of Women’s History Month, think about how your organization could launch a women’s empowerment program or get involved with groups that support women. Sarma recommends asking your female employees which organizations mean the most to them.

    6. Give social media shout-outs. Use this month to publicly applaud the exceptional women on your team and in your industry. Sarma says you could interview women on your team about how they got into their roles and share some of their favorite inspiring quotes.

    7. Re-examine your compensation. If you want to get serious about gender equality in the workplace, conduct a salary audit of women and men in the same or similar roles. Now is the time to make sure the women on your team are paid fairly for their work and that they have equal opportunities for advancement.

    On this day, think about how you can lift up the women on your team all month and throughout the year. While some fun recognition is a nice gesture, take a good look at how your company could empower female employees. Whether it’s providing more flexibility or leveling up on pay, when you better support women at work, your entire organization wins.

    Stay tuned for tomorrow’s PCT, where we highlight tips for making your workplace more equitable for female job candidates and employees.

    Compiled by Audrey Sellers

    Source: Susmita Sarma is a podcast host and content creator at Vantage Circle.

    Used with permission from PPAI

  • March 16, 2021 6:36 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Consumer sentiment continued to improve in February, building on a January upswing. The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index reached 91.3 in February, up from 88.9 in January. Its Present Situation Index, based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions, also climbed, from 85.5 to 92. However, the Conference Board’s Expectations Index—based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions—fell marginally, from 91.2 in January to 90.8 last month.

    The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen, a global provider of information and analytics around what consumers buy and watch. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was February 11. The survey results did not fully capture the events surrounding the Texas power crisis nor the loosening of dining restrictions in New York City.

    “After three months of consecutive declines in the Present Situation Index, consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved in February,” says Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “This course reversal suggests economic growth has not slowed further. While the Expectations Index fell marginally in February, consumers remain cautiously optimistic, on the whole, about the outlook for the coming months. Notably, vacation intentions—particularly, plans to travel outside the U.S. and via air—saw an uptick this month, and are poised to improve further as vaccination efforts expand.”

    Consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved in February, with the percentage claiming business conditions are “good” increasing from 15.8 percent to 16.5 percent, while the share saying that they are “bad” fell from 42.4 percent to 39.9 percent. Consumers’ appraisal of the labor market also improved. The percentage of consumers saying jobs are “plentiful” increased from 20 percent to 21.9 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” declined from 22.5 percent to 21.2 percent.

    The Conference Board reports that consumers were marginally less optimistic about the short-term outlook in February. The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months fell from 34.1 percent to 31 percent; however, the proportion expecting business conditions to worsen also declined, from 19 percent to 17.7 percent. Consumers’ outlook regarding the job market was also somewhat mixed. The percentage expecting more jobs in the months ahead decreased from 30.4 percent to 26.1 percent; while those anticipating fewer jobs also declined, from 22.1 percent to 20.6 percent. Regarding short-term income prospects, 15.2 percent of consumers expect their income to increase in the next six months, down slightly from 15.8 percent in January. Conversely, 13.2 percent expect their income to decrease, down from 15.5 percent last month.

    Used with permission from PPAI

  • March 16, 2021 6:35 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    During my journey of building a million dollar business while working less than 4 hours a day, I became obsessed with setting goals.

    It all started in my senior year of college when I read “Think & Grow Rich”. I took the concepts of “TGR” to heart and created my own road map of goal-setting based on Napoleon Hill’s teachings.

    As I began to streamline my business, I found myself interested in exploring new interests in business. 

    First, I got into blogging, then podcasting and finally video production. 

    All of this content creation built my personal brand which led to recognition of being on lists like Silicon Valley’s 40 Under 40 List and PPAI’s Rising Stars. I don’t say this to brag, rather I say this to illustrate a point…

    I was manifesting the whole time without even knowing what the word meant.

    Let’s back up…

    For those of you that might not know it, I’ve been on a spiritual “soul seeking” journey since the Spring of 2019. You see my depression settled in hard around February of 2019 and after doing some deep “shadow work” I realized that I had been chasing success...

    I was chasing goal after goal and doing the things that I thought I was supposed to do rather than what I wanted to do. As I crossed off yet another goal from my TGR process, I only became more empty. How could this be?

    Well, interestingly enough Pixar’s latest blockbuster film “SOUL” illustrates two of the things I just mentioned…

    Near the beginning of the movie, they show a character as a “lost soul” in the astral realm only to be woken up in the 3D earthly plane to realize he hated his job working as a hedge fund manager.

    SPOILER ALERT…

    Later in the film, the main character, Joe Gardner achieves his dream only to say “I thought I’d feel different." The point?
    Just as I had been feeling before I “woke up” if you will...chasing goals rather than being present.

    Anyway, for more on the movie “SOUL” check out this YouTube video I made that breaks down the deeper meaning of Soul. 

    I digress…

    Back to Manifesting

    The title of Napoleon Hill’s classic book from 1937 tells you everything you need to know about manifesting - “Think & Grow Rich."

    Despite not even knowing the meaning of the word “manifesting” until 2019, I had manifested my dream business because of the teachings of TGR in less than 5 years!

    If you haven’t read, TGR, I highly recommend it and for the purposes of this post I’m not going to recap TGR. Rather, I’d like to include my process of manifesting since being on the spiritual path that consists of a hybrid approach of “woo” and TGR…

    Rules of Manifesting

    1. Visualize what it is you want to bring into your personal reality.

    2. Get clear on why you want this and what it will feel like once you have it.

    3. Release: That’s right. It’s counterintuitive but forget about it! The clingy energy of “needing” and “wanting” is what will keep you from achieving your dreams.

    4. Read Your Power Statement Daily: In this guide, I teach you how to write a “power statement”. An effective power statement should be read in the morning daily. You can think of this as a goal and reading your goals daily. The magic of a power statement over a goal is it’s an affirmation that puts you in the state of achieving your dream(s).

    That’s it!

    Manifesting doesn’t have to be hard. The key really is to release expectations and any (and all) clingy energy!

    For more on manifesting, check out my SOUL SEEKR podcast and specifically listen to episode #88 which is all about a sacred ceremony that’s known for amplifying your manifesting abilities!

    To Living Your Dream Life,
    Sam


    Sam Kabert is the creative director of SwagWorx and the creator and co-host of the podcast “WhatUp Silicon Valley!” A risk taker who embraces permanent beta, Sam is leading the transformation of his family-run office supplies business into a promotional products powerhouse. Sam can be reached at Sam@SwagWorx.com.

    Used with permission from PromoCorner

  • March 16, 2021 6:34 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Are you looking to capture people’s attention? For a promotion that really packs a punch, consider choosing a product that partners your client’s organization with a social good program. By giving back to a cause that their audience cares about, you can help them to build trust and loyalty as well as lasting relationships and brand recognition. Here are five of our favorite products that give back and the causes they support:

    The Terra Umbrella, supporting the Rainforest Action Network

    SAGE #53091

    Keep your customers dry with this umbrella, featuring a 42” arc for wide coverage from precipitation and their brand’s logo prominently printed. They’ll love the easy auto-open feature keeping them ready for rain at a moment’s notice, and your clients will love knowing that they’re giving back to a good cause while getting their brand out there.

    The Rainforest Action Network’s mission is to “preserve forests, protect the climate, and uphold human rights by challenging corporate power and systemic injustice through frontline partnerships and strategic campaigns.” 1% of the net proceeds from the Terra Umbrella will be donated to RAN.

    Basecamp Tundra Bottle, supporting Wounded Warrior Project

    SAGE #56805

    Whether your customers like their drinks blazing hot or ice-cold, they’re sure to love this insulated 20 Oz. bottle. With a copper lining and double-wall construction, this water bottle keeps drinks hot for 12 hours and cold for 24. You can cover all 360 degrees of this bottle with your customer’s brand for endless impressions on a product that their recipients are sure to use time and time again.

    With your purchase of the Basecamp Tundra Bottle, you’re directly supporting Basecamp’s mission to donate $100,000 to the Wounded Warrior Project. Wounded Warrior Project is a nonprofit organization that helps veterans and active duty service members through various programs, services, and events.

    Microgreens Desktop Grow Kit, supporting Feed the Children

    SAGE #69207

    Microgreens are the newest tiny veggie to take the food world by storm. They’re the small, edible seedlings of various vegetables and herbs rich in nutrients and packed with flavor. With the large branding area for your customers’ logo, they’ll get plenty of facetime with their recipients while they grow these tasty greens perfect for topping salads, pizzas, and more.

    Feed the Children was established over 40 years ago and strives to end childhood hunger. In the United States, Feed the Children distributes donations of food and other products through a network of community partners, provides classroom support and school supplies to underserved communities, and mobilizes resources to offer quick help when natural disasters strike. For every grow kit purchased, 1% of sales is donated to Feed the Children.

    Patriot Tumbler and Mask, supporting Homes For Our Troops

    SAGE #66296

    Stainless steel tumblers are a promotional heavyweight and one of the top-reigning promotional products. You can’t go wrong with these ubiquitous, useful, and universally-liked tumblers printed or engraved with your customers’ design, and they’re sure to have the perfect beverage to fill them.

    Likewise, masks are another mega-popular product that is sure to please. These reusable face masks are manufactured in the United States and feature a sleek design suited to the curves of the wearer’s face to ensure a smooth fit for safety. With masks likely to remain common even post-pandemic, your clients are sure to garner plenty of impressions as their customers wear these out and about.

    Home For Our Troops is a publicly funded 501(c)(3) whose mission is “to build and donate specially adapted custom homes nationwide for severely injured post-9/11 Veterans, to enable them to rebuild their lives.” For every face mask sold, Patriot Coolers will donate $1, and for every tumbler sold, 30% of the net proceeds are donated to Home For Our Troops.

    If you’re looking for an easy way to clue your customers into products that give back, we’ve added an extra special SAGE Email Campaign this month chock-full of promotional products that support a good cause. SAGE Email Campaigns are a foolproof way to add email pieces to your marketing plan that boost your sales, drive traffic to your SAGE website, and more.

    To learn more about the importance of giving back, check out our blogs on corporate social responsibility and PromoCares.

    Used with permission from SAGE

  • March 16, 2021 6:33 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    How much of your time do you actually spend selling? It may be less than you think. Most sales reps today spend more time managing their sales than making them. The latest research shows that good sales professionals spend less than a third of their time selling. The rest of their time goes to administrative tasks around sales and demand generation.

    Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to boost your sales productivity—the amount of time you actually spend selling. Doug Davidoff, CEO of Imagine Business Development, has outlined five ways sales reps can spend more time selling and become more efficient at the backend tasks.

    In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share Davidoff’s strategies to maximize sales productivity.

    1. Map out how you acquire customers. According to Davidoff, the first step in maximizing your sales productivity is examining how you get your clients. Instead of building out your entire methodology, Davidoff encourages sales professionals to map the customer acquisition process and look for waypoints. This allows you to make your repeatable process a series of repeatable mini processes that you can input as needed. The process is similar to how football teams execute their playbook or how hitters adjust to pitches and situations in baseball.

    2. Establish a service-level agreement. Another way to enhance your sales productivity is to be sure you have a service-level agreement (SLA) in place. An SLA defines what every lead definition means and how to manage those leads. Davidoff says that a strong SLA enables everyone to spend their time focused on selling situations rather than figuring out what to do and when to do it.

    3. Scale back on all the systems. Sales professionals often use a dizzying array of technology to do their jobs. From forecasting to lead scoring to marketing automation, many sales reps use CRMs, document sharing, video, chat and other tools to try to be more efficient. However, the opposite is often true. Trying to maximize each system’s efficiency ends up slowing everyone down, notes Davidoff. The solution? Use the apps and tools that make sense, but make sure they all connect to a single system and a “database of truth,” he says.

    4. Build and execute contextual plays. Most sales reps either execute their sales cadences like robots or have little time to have a focused conversation. Davidoff says you can boost your sales productivity by designing contextual plays—or ways to free up a sales rep’s genius to engage with the prospect or customer.

    5. Tap into the power of the playbook. A well-defined and documented playbook gives your sales team a leg up on those without one. Playbooks are powerful, says Davidoff, because they help sales professionals move swifter and more efficiently. The goal is to ensure those on your team do not get bogged down by manual processes, so be sure to integrate and automate your playbook into your existing systems.

    To truly be more productive in your sales efforts, think about how you spend your time. It also helps to consider how your various systems and tools may be bogging you down rather than helping you increase your output. When you apply the strategies above, you can help your sales team stay focused on the high-value actions that lead to sales.

    Compiled by Audrey Sellers

    Source: Doug Davidoff is CEO of Imagine Business Development. He has worked with more than 1,500 small and medium-sized businesses to make sales growth predictable, sustainable and scalable.

    Used with permission from PPAI

  • February 17, 2021 7:34 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Your prospects might receive dozens or even hundreds of emails a day. This means that for your prospecting emails to get seen, they need to be good. If your message doesn’t capture attention right away, it will probably get deleted and lost forever.

    While crafting powerful sales emails might seem daunting, you can borrow a few email-writing secrets from Jenny Keohane, a content marketing specialist at Yesware. In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share Keohane’s six ways to create personalized emails that will almost always get a reply.

    Showcase commonalities. The first tip for connecting with prospects is to show them what you have in common. It’s even better when you can point out something unusual. To look for what unique hobbies or interests you might share, look at the prospect’s social media profiles. If you see something that’s not particularly common, mention it in your email, says Keohane. Saying something in an initial outreach could open the door to future conversations.

    Mention mutual connections. Another way to boost the odds of getting your sales emails read is to mention someone you both know. Keohane points out that we take cues from people we already know and trust. Noting a mutual connection shows that you have done your research and you mean business.

    Time it right. When to send your emails is always a tricky topic. You want to send them at a time that prospects are most likely checking their emails, but when is that? According to a 2020 Yesware study, the best time to send your emails is 1 pm and the next-best time is 11 am. Keohane adds that Monday and Tuesday are the most active time periods when replying to emails, so consider this when planning your communication.

    Address particular pain points. One of the best ways to get a reply to your email, according to Keohane, is to personalize it with the prospect’s specific needs. That’s because pain motivates action even more than pleasure, she says. Scan the company website for press releases and monitor social media pages to see how you might be able to strike a chord with your email.

    Use their name multiple times. You never want your sales emails to come across as generic. By incorporating the prospect’s name more than once, you can make your communication look incredibly personalized. Plus, people love to see their own name. Keohane says you can incorporate people’s names in various ways, from complimenting them on a recent promotion to starting a dialogue about a new offering. Don’t just say, “I’m impressed by you, Chris,” she notes. If you don’t get specific, you risk your email getting deleted.

    Getting your prospects to reply to your sales emails requires the right approach along with testing and measuring. Try some of the tactics above, from spotlighting commonalities to repeating their name, to see which ones get the most responses. When you strive to craft emails your prospects actually want to read, you will be able to start more conversations and have more productive dialogues.

    Used with permission from PPAI Publications

  • February 17, 2021 7:28 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    When a Customer Crosses the Line

    We've all had customers that can be difficult or demanding, but when is enough, enough?

    2/10/2021 | Rosalie Marcus, Promo Biz Coach

    What happens when a customer crosses the line? When their behavior is verbally abusive, rude, inappropriate or threatening? What do you do?

    This blog is in response to a post in a Facebook group for promotional product professionals. A well respected and highly rated supplier shared an incident where a distributor threatened to pull their business and trash his company’s reputation by giving his company a poor rating in industry research systems. All because they misread a quote his company had sent and wanted the company to match a price that was ten times lower than the written quote they received. It was an outrageous request, and one that he certainly could not honor!

    Reading about that incident, brought me back to a situation that happened many years ago in my distributorship. A contract decorator screamed and cursed at me when I questioned, what I believed was a less than acceptable printing job he had done on an order. Was my concern unwarranted? I didn’t think so! But, for sure his response crossed the line! Needless to say, I never did business with his company again!

    We’ve all had customers that can be difficult or even demanding, but when their behavior becomes abusive, I believe you need to have boundaries in place that when crossed you refuse to tolerate.

    Here are some things you can do to try and avoid this type of situation in your own business.

    Train your staff as to what is acceptable behavior, and let them know you stand behind them if a customer crosses the line.

    Put everything in writing. Have a paper trail as to what was communicated.

    Request pre-production digital or product proofs on all first-time orders and have the customer sign off them.

    Try to remain calm at all times, and let the customer vent if need be, but end the conversation when they become abusive, threatening or inappropriate.

    If you’ve made a mistake, and we all do sometimes, own up to it and try and find a solution that is satisfactory to all.

    The bottom line, we’re all in this together. Suppliers and distributors are partners in each other’s success. Civility and respect are paramount in any relationship business or personal. Above all, be willing to walk away from customers that don’t treat you or your staff with respect! There are plenty of good people out there that will!

    Rosalie Marcus, The Promo Biz Coach, is a promotional products business expert, sales coach and top-rated speaker. Combining her skills and years of experience in promotional sales, she helps her clients sell more at higher margins to better clients. Get FREE up-to-the-minute sales tips and a FREE On-Demand Webinar 5 Must-Know Strategies for Selling in the New Normal at her website: www.PromoBizCoach.com Reach her at Rosalie@promobizcoach.com.

    Used with permission from PromoCorner

  • February 17, 2021 7:21 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Did you know that the concept of “spring cleaning” has cultural significance? Many cultures and religions have cleansing rituals that fall in the late winter/early spring, and the practice of spring cleaning that’s prevalent in North America and northern Europe is ritualistic in its own way. There’s no better way to usher winter out the door than with a freshly cleaned home, ready to let in the warmth of spring.

    After a year of spending much more time at home than usual, a good cleaning is going to be essential this season! Here are a few of our favorite promo products for a productive spring cleaning session:

    Scrub Brush

    SAGE #56780

    If you’ve been working from home this past year, you know that the dishes never truly end. Your clients will love having their logos printed on these hardy little scrub brushes, perfect for swiping away leftover food or dried crud on dishes. Their prospects will love how much easier their least favorite chore is going to be with this brush, and they’ll have your clients to thank for it!

    Spray Bottle

    SAGE #51291

    These branded spray bottles make an ideal spring cleaning promotion for customers who are health- and environmentally-conscious. Their recipients can fill these bottles with the homemade, eco-friendly cleaner of their choice and get to work! Add a card printed with a cleaning spray recipe (we’re partial to a diluted white vinegar mixture) for added value with little additional cost.

    Mini Trash Can

    SAGE #60462

    Spring cleaning doesn’t stop with the home – car interiors need attention too! Perfect for body shops, auto dealerships, and car washes looking for a spring cleaning promotion, this little trash can fits snugly into any standard cup holder so that your car doesn’t get filled with old receipts and straw wrappers. With your client’s logo printed on the lid, their customers will know just who’s trying to help them keep their vehicle clean this spring.

    Computer Cleaner

    SAGE #56780

    Likewise, desks need some spring cleaning too. Whether they’ve been working in the office or from home, your customer’s employees have probably got some gunk in their keyboards! These computer cleaners feature a keyboard brush on one side and a screen cleaner on the other, covering all the bases when it comes to dirty laptops. Use the brush to clear any snack crumbs or pet hair out of the keyboard, and then wipe the screen with the cleaner side to get rid of fingerprints and smudges.

    Air Purifier

    SAGE #67545

    Take spring cleaning to the next level with this luxury giveaway. Your customers can brand this cube-shaped air purifier with their logo or design and give them away to their VIPs for a promotion that clears the air – literally! Air purifiers help to remove pollen, mold, bacteria, and more from the air, creating a peaceful environment that’s easy to breathe in.

    Candle

    SAGE #53744

    Everyone knows that the best part of spring cleaning is completing the job. Finish strong with a scented candle to refresh and brighten up any room. Branded scented candles make a great spring cleaning giveaway for housekeeping businesses and realtors – your customers can leave these behind after a job or at a showing for a promotional reminder that looks and smells great.

    Spring cleaning is a great time to open the windows, shake out the rugs, and get back into the swing of things, including promoting a business or organization! Help your customers bring their best to the table this spring with cleaning products that are useful and pack a promotional punch. Happy cleaning!


  • February 17, 2021 7:18 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Last Sunday, Super Bowl LV drew just 96.1 million viewers across all platforms—this includes CBS, ESPN Deportes and streaming on CBS Sports, NFL and Verizon digital and mobile media—a 5.5-percent drop from 2020’s total audience and the lowest viewership the game has received in 14 years. Looking only at the TV audience, viewership was down by eight percent. But while the Super Bowl’s audience numbers may have been relatively lackluster, its advertisers still resonated with viewers.

    This year, the Super Bowl broadcast featured 56 advertisers with 67 spots. Ad measurement and attribution company ispot.tv tracked the digital activity ads promoted on social media—Facebook, Twitter and YouTube—on game day and measured their TV ad impressions, earned online views and social impressions to formulate Digital Share of Voice (DSOV) rating for each spot. Mountain Dew’s “Major Melon Bottle Count” spot took the lead with a DSOV of 21.78 percent, although its built-in social activation—asking viewers to tweet a bottle count—boosted its social impressions. At No. 2 was Amazon Echo’s “Alexa's Body,” at 13.95 percent, and at No. 3, Jeep’s “The Middle” earned 10.64 percent.

    Rounding out the DSOV top 10 are Cadillac’s “ScissorHandsFree” at 4.47 percent, State Farm’s “Drake From State Farm” at 3.31 percent, Dorito’s “Flat Matthew” at 2.2 percent, Uber Eats’ “Wayne's World & Cardi B's Shameless Manipulation” at 1.78 percent, Cheetos’ “It Wasn’t Me” at 1.56 percent, Tide’s “The Jason Alexander Hoodie” at 1.27 percent and Verizon’s “Can’t Blame The Lag” at 1.09 percent.

    Reflecting the unprecedented events of the past year, several prominent brands chose to sit out the Super Bowl for 2021. Among them was Budweiser which, for the first time in 37 years, did not advertise during the big game. The brand announced last month that it was redirecting its Super Bowl media investment budget to support the COVID-19 vaccination efforts throughout the year. Other Anheuser-Busch brands, including Bud Light and Michelob ULTRA, did advertise during the game.

    Pepsi and Coca-Cola also held back their usual Super Bowl advertising, with Coca-Cola noting, “This difficult choice was made to ensure we are investing in the right resources during these unprecedented times.” Pepsi was a sponsor of the half-time show, however.

    These pull-backs may reflect financial challenges some brands are facing. Atlanta, Georgia-based advertising/marketing lawyer Jim Dudukovich, with Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, spent nearly 20 years as in-house ad counsel with Coca-Cola. He notes, “Behind the scenes, a lot of companies are struggling financially and are reducing their marketing spend, and that’s what we’re seeing with Super Bowl ads.”

    Used with permission from PPAI Publications

  • February 17, 2021 7:15 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

    Motivation lags sometimes, even in the most enthusiastic and driven people. When one of your top performers falls into a rut and finds it hard to put in their usual effort, it can mean missed innovation, a lull in productivity and sometimes even a drop in profits.

    You can watch for several signs of an unmotivated employee, according to HR specialist, Kristen DeFazio. Sometimes, employees who typically deliver above-average work may no longer want to exceed expectations. Other times, energetic employees may lose their enthusiasm for interacting with colleagues or clients. You also might notice employees pushing back more and resisting when they are asked to do something.

    When you see the signs of a struggling employee, it’s time to step in and work on a solution together. For example, employees may be having trouble in their personal life and could benefit from adjusted office hours or a lighter workload temporarily. Unless you talk with them, you won’t know how you can help.

    In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share tips from DeFazio on how to help employees rekindle their motivation at work.

    Understand the cause. The first step to helping an unmotivated employee is understanding what’s causing them to lose motivation. The best way to do this, according to DeFazio, is simply to ask. Invite them to a virtual lunch or schedule some time to have a casual conversation to talk about how things are going. You could say something like, “I like that you always share great ideas in meetings, and I noticed you haven’t been speaking up lately. What’s going on?” Keep in mind that employees are most likely to share when they already have a trusting relationship with their boss.

    Talk things through. When you notice an employee struggling to find their motivation, there could be a simple fix. Talk with them about how they feel in their current role or with their current responsibilities. Perhaps they are feeling burned out or they are frustrated when other sales reps are not held accountable. Sometimes, they may feel they have outgrown their role and want to take on more responsibility. DeFazio says that a promotion may sometimes be a proactive measure to avoid dissatisfaction in the first place.

    Get to know your employees better. To improve motivation, you must know what motivates your employees. In your conversations, find out what drives your sales reps. Are they motivated by bonuses and incentives when they hit certain benchmarks? Do they value flexible work hours, or do they want to improve their skills through training and development programs? What’s important and motivating to one employee may look different from someone else, so be sure to custom tailor your approach for each sales rep.

    Offer a challenge. If you can’t offer a promotion or perks to re-inspire your employees, try a challenge, suggests DeFazio. She says if the employee is up for it, giving them the freedom and independence to tackle a problem can refresh their wellspring of innovation. It also gives the employee a chance to learn a new skill or work in a different area that could stretch their talents and give them more visibility.

    Productivity slumps and lack of motivation happen from time to time. However, if you see this becoming a trend on your team, take steps to reignite that lost motivation. Figure out what’s behind the slump and determine what could help turn things around. Whether your employees could benefit from some flexibility or the challenge of taking on a new project, you can help them rediscover their enthusiasm and get them back to performing at their best.

    Compiled by Audrey Sellers

    Source: Kristen DeFazio is a human resources specialist at Insperity. With more than 10 years of HR experience, DeFazio is a strategic and contemporary leader, passionate about employee satisfaction and development in relation to overall performance and profitability.

    Used with permission from PPAI Publications

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