Andrew Rudin

Why Companies Should Care about How They Earn Revenue

“I don’t care how you make your number, as long as you make it,” my district manager admonished his sales team back in 1993. He chuckled, but he was dead serious. His laissez faire attitude was risky. We could have interpreted his statement as...

Disobedience: A How-to Guide for Managers and Employees

Somewhere, a manager just ordered an employee to take a questionable action. To do something immoral or stupid. Something that causes harm to customers. There – it just happened again! In less than the time it takes to read this paragraph. Relentless wrongdoing. It...

The Difference Between Loyalty and Habit – and Why It Matters!

If you ask me to define a word, I usually start by describing what it is, or what it means. “A screwdriver is a hand tool used for turning screws and bolts. Also good for opening paint cans. Also, a cocktail made from vodka...

Personalization: Gateway to Dystopia

Back in the ‘90’s, Robert, a project manager at a systems integrator, asked me for some technical guidance about automated identification. “I want to track people,” he said. “Basically, I want to know when a person enters a room, when he exits, when he’s...

Optimize: Meaningful Math or Over-worn Word?

If you want to become a linguistic maven, or the life of a party, read Made in America - An Informal History of the English Language in the United States, by Bill Bryson. The book is saturated with interesting stories about the origins of...

Wells Fargo Disinfects Its Sales Culture. Will Other Companies Follow?

I’ve never taught corporate strategy to second graders, but I sometimes think about how to approach the challenge. I’d begin by representing a company as hodgepodge of contraptions. Maybe, a school bus with feathered wings on top, a boat anchor dragging behind, and wheels...

Should Companies Stop Worshiping Sales Rock Stars?

“Can you find us a sales rep? And not just any rep. We want a rock star!” An ordinary request for something truly extraordinary. I hear it often. Lately, I began to wonder, what does this honorific mean? I searched online for sales rock star,...

Six Strategies for Managing Revenue Risk

When you boil off the ancillary stuff that business developers do, four distinct objects remain: 1. Capture: Acquire new customers 2. Maintain: Keep current customers happy 3. Grow: Encourage customers to increase spending with your company 4. Reclaim: Win back former customers No mere coincidence…

How Does Global Risk Impact YOUR Company’s Revenue? Let Me Count the Ways!

The World Economic Forum, or WEF, holds its annual conference every January in Davos Switzerland, two hours from Zurich by train. Public policy wonks, government officials, and monetary experts flock there in search of brutally cold weather and panel discussions delivered in monotone. I’d...

Is the Voice of Risk Being Heard?

“If only HP knew how much HP knows, we would be three times more productive,” Hewlett-Packard CEO Lew Platt said. Had Mr. Platt been talking about his sales organization, he would have pumped up the multiple. Sales teams possess a trove of valuable commercial knowledge....

How to Implement a Price Increase

This month, I had a remarkably cruddy customer experience. "So what?" you say. "That's not unusual." Agreed. But this foul was so grievous, I worried whether another company might repeat the gaffe. As a professional marketer - as a compassionate human being -...

Virginia Gives Tesla’s New Sales Model a Faint Green Light

Earlier this month, I visited friends in Beverly Hills, California, and rode in their new Tesla Model S. The car accommodated six adults. Two sat up front, and four snuggled into a back seat designed to hold three. I loved the quiet, and especially...

Announcing the 2016 Sales Ethics Hall of Shame

I’ve never bumped into a live Ouroboros, but if I did, the sight would stop me in my tracks. “OMG! I didn’t think an animal could do that!” The mythical creature, often depicted as a snake or dragon, has a strange epicurean craving: itself....

Risk Committees: An Antidote for Fraud

I have a writing problem that’s giving me fits. I’m knee-deep into fraud - that is, describing how to prevent it. Unfortunately, the subject doesn’t involve using fun, energetic words like transformative change and market domination. Instead, I must become jazzed about ideas that...

When I Say ‘Cheat,’ You Say ‘How Much?’ Why Salespeople Are Easy to Exploit

“Your judgment gets clouded out in the field when you are pressured to sell, sell, sell.” Wells Fargo, 2016? Actually, no. Dial back about twenty-two years - to 1994. This quote came from Prudential Insurance sales rep John Vetter, talking about a scam that...

Wells Fargo’s Restitution Must Include Its Fired Sales Employees

Today, there’s a bold headline featured in full-page ads in newspapers across the US. In case you missed it, it’s printed in Wells Fargo red: “Moving forward to make things right.” Contrition, superimposed on a beautiful Western backdrop. In the foreground, a team of...

Cross-selling Is Not Evil!

You can’t read or hear anything about Wells Fargo without cross-selling popping up. “At Wells Fargo, apparently, the solution in recent years was aggressive ‘cross selling’ of its existing customers – that is, urging them to open credit card accounts to go with their...

Anatomy of a Scam: Wells Fargo’s Treachery Can Happen Anywhere

If you knew your customers were being deceived, why didn’t you stop it? If you didn’t know, why? As Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf knows, it’s a bad day at the office when any answer you give is wrong. His company got slapped with a…

Three Things You DON’T Need to Know for Sales Success

In Virginia, the day after Labor Day means back-to-school. A tradition that reminds us that summer has entered its final fade, taking with it the sweet scent of suntan lotion, long days, warm nights, and fireflies. The day means boxy yellow school buses filling...

The Sales Force of the Future Could Be Spelled 1-0-9-9

I feel the same way about Zika that I do about being average. I’d rather avoid it. But averageness helped “Bill,” who once contacted me to fill a sales role at a startup. His social skills were unremarkable - not great, not bad. Just...

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