Do you settle for ‘normal’?…

This astounded and horrified me – how about you?

On Sunday morning I had a three way telephone conversation with my representative in India and the CEO of a major organisation employing a sales team of some 48,000 people including salespeople, sales managers and trainers. The purpose was to discuss if I could and how I might help them.

Here are a couple of the CEO’s statements:

We lose sixty per cent of our sales managers every year – but that is OK, it is normal for the industry.

We retain twenty per cent of our salespeople over a four year period, but that is OK, it is normal for our industry.

This was our first conversation and it was not appropriate for me to be my usual blunt self. But the fact of the matter is that I was stunned by this attitude.

What I felt like saying was:

Well suppose ‘normal’ was losing ninety per cent of your sales managers.. Would that be OK? And…

Supposing it was normal to only retain five per cent of the salespeople over four years. Would that be OK?

But I did not say that – I am saving it for another conversation.

For me, ‘normal’ is simply not good enough and not acceptable. I will not settle for normality or mediocrity.

What is normal for your business sector and are you settling for it?

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