We are all salespeople

Servers at restaurants are salespeople. Hosts who answer phones and take reservations and greet customers and say goodnight to them are salespeople. Bartenders are salespeople. Retailers that put wine the hands of a customer and earn their trust are salespeople. The ones that ring up the order at a wine shop are salespeople. The delivery crew at Read More…

Success, and the people around you

Congratulations, you are a successful restaurant owner/operator (or artist, or musician, or sales rep, or wine retailer)! You watch your P&L statements like a hawk. You pay your employees fairly and on time. Your vendors appreciate their relationship with you for the same reason. You open multiple locations, each building more success for the other. Read More…

The Reactive Rut

I had a great conversation last night with a local wine retailer. Her shop is small, based on convenience for the neighborhood, and with more and more competition moving in she’s having a hard time standing out and growing her business. The backbone of her business is reacting to the needs of her customers on Read More…

Sharing vision

Sharing vision is one of the most important aspects of any of our wine jobs. It shapes the meetings, sets the stage, outlines the expectations, and points out the differentiations between you and rest of the world (otherwise known as “them”). To share a vision you first have to have a vision. A vision is different Read More…

The trouble with robots

Robots are kind of awesome and fascinating. They work fast, they work hard, they don’t complain, they are masters of efficiency. The problem with robots is that they do or say the same things over and over (and over and over and over and over). What many people fail to realize is that being a Read More…

The goal of inducing curiosity (via a Coravin)

It’s one of the most effective but overlooked sales techniques. It’s the key to success for many legendary brands, but can easily be replicated into our industries. It’s curiosity. One of my wine consulting contracts is for a successful privately held restaurant group. Three locations, over $1 million in wine sales. They specialize in burgers (really Read More…

A day of planning, a day of pause

Welcome to Black Friday. The day after Thanksgiving is always a strange one. Shoppers pack the stores, movie theaters are busy, many restaurants open early to catch the breakfast and brunch crowd, quite a few people simply stay at home and eat leftovers and watch TV. Wine shops are busy but not overrun (nothing compared Read More…

A great use for Thanksgiving Eve

What are you doing today? If you are a wine sales rep or a wholesale manager, here’s a little secret: today is one of the best days of the year to visit unsold or unopened restaurant accounts. Why? Because today the retailers are so busy they don’t want to see you. And your solid on-premise Read More…

The problem with choices …

… is that most people second guess their decision. When faced with a huge number of choices in front of them, most people will fret and fuss and debate and contemplate until the frustration leads to simply grabbing something that they hope will work and going for it. It’s the video store syndrome. Remember those Read More…

Practice does make perfect

There is no short cut around practice. Simple as that.  Does U2 just jump up on stage one day and pull off a perfect show? No way. Does an olympic swimmer casually decide to just swim really fast for that week? Of course not. Does a great restaurant built on customer experience just assume the new Read More…

Monday challenge: The Supermoon Effect

Every Monday I throw out a challenge to readers. Something to push you into an uncomfortable spot, to make you see things in a new light or direction, with the goal of growth. This week’s challenge: The Supermoon Effect. Last night more people than ever before paused what they were doing, walked outside, and watched Read More…

A new haircut

Yesterday my wife went to a new hair stylist for a haircut. She was tired of her old stylist for no reason other than “it’s time to change things up.” She came back with not only an awesome haircut, but an exceptional story about customer sales and the overall transaction. When most of us go for Read More…