Words matter

If you are a wine retailer, the words that you attach to products matter. These are the words your staff says when suggesting wines (you are training them on what to say about certain wines, right?). These are the words that are on your hand written shelftalkers that show your endorsement of a product (which you Read More…

The portfolio quandary

The problem with having a huge portfolio of great wines is that you have to constantly pop bottles to remind people of your products. But you then risk popping too many, looking desperate or without vision and direction. The problem with a small and finely tuned portfolio is that once you pop a bottle and the buyer Read More…

Some wine buyers …

… are in it for the juice. It’s all about the wine. You have to leave them alone while they taste it, eyes closed and covering one ear, ala Miles in Sideways. … are in it for the story. They want the history, the background, the links to other wineries, the hero’s journey. … are Read More…

It’s your job

If you are a sales rep, it’s your job: to have a current catalog at hand to have current pricing sheets at the ready to have your phone charged up for the day to have extra time built into your schedule to handle last second needs of your customers to know how best to communicate Read More…

The overthinkers

I was once part of a wholesale company that produced the most confusing and convoluted incentive program ever. It involved eighteen wines from four different suppliers. Under one case retail placements counted as a point. Solid case retail counted as five points. Multiple case retailer placements had an added bonus level of points, scaled based Read More…

Leadership and Fear

This is a three part question. First: Do you fear the leaders of your organization? Do you tremble when you get called to the office, knowing that most interactions are going to be confrontational? Do you think those leaders were put in their position of power because they are good at heavy handed commanding? Second: Do you Read More…

Thin skin vs. Thick skin

Thin skinned salespeople are impacted by the word NO, are hesitant to ask for the big sale, always question what they said and if they did the right thing, and are generally nervous about how a customer feels about them. But so called “thin skinned” salespeople are also better attuned to the emotions of a Read More…

What is your job?

Is your job a marathon, ala one person putting long distance effort forward to achieve? Or is your job a 100 meter sprint? One person bursting forth like Usain Bolt to set new records? Or is your job a team effort with many matches, ala the World Cup? Or is your job a single game Read More…

Like it or not, SOND is here

It’s the day after Labor Day in the United States. For many, the end of summer and the start of a school year. More importantly for us, it’s the start of SOND. The run of September-October-November-December is pretty incredible in our industry. On average well more than one half of restaurant and retail wine business Read More…

The importance of seeing sunk costs

As Seth Godin has reminded us, the value of your eclipse sunglasses as of today is zero. Not almost zero. Absolutely zero.  Sunk costs, in economic terms, is money that was spent in the past on projects/people/systems/software/materials/etc. that are no longer needed or have much faster/better/cheaper alternatives on the marketplace. It is money that was spent Read More…