Greg Seminara, Export Solutions

Think Big! An adjustment in mindset towards “What if” can deliver game changing results for your business. In today’s business environment, execution of the same plans and same promotions as the past will deliver mediocre results, even for leading brands. The consumer goods industry contains many success stories where hungry innovators challenged existing status quo to achieve Breakthrough results. Breakthrough is about delivering extraordinary results by employing unique strategies and perseverance.

Getting Started – The beauty of Breakthrough is that everyone can participate. Each team member needs to analyze his business and identify one sale or achievement that would deliver maximum impact. Breakthrough objectives should focus on “Big Wins at Big Accounts” and be aligned with the companies overall growth strategy. This objective should be documented as part of their annual performance review process. Appoint one person in the organization to lead the Breakthrough campaign at your company.

Examples– What if you could gain category exclusivity for your brand, by knocking out your competitor? What would happen to your business if your major account would provide a front page feature advertisement with pallet displays in all stores? Imagine the impact on your business if an account accepted every single item in your product line? My personal Breakthrough occurred as a young sales manager for Procter & Gamble calling on Charley Brothers (now Super Valu/Pittsburgh). I achieved 163 % of my sales objective by convincing them to promote all my brands instead of just Tide (Ariel).

Publicize Breakthrough– Breakthrough performance contests succeed when the organization recognizes its importance in your business plan. This could include motivational speeches on Breathrough by your CEO or outside speaker, frequent updates through your company web site or newsletter, and recognition for individuals achieving Breakthrough results. Circulating examples of Breakthrough performance motivates others to strive for their own Breakthrough and creates the opportunity to replicate new “Best Practices”.

Breakthrough for Distributors– The Breakthrough concept can also work well with a distributor network. Challenge each distributor to identify one Breakthrough as part of your annual business plan. Share “Best Practice” Breakthrough’s throughout your distributor network. Reward breakthrough performance with a personal note, plaque or a “Dinner Out”.

Breakthrough Forever– Breakthrough serves as a motivational tool to challenge your team to alter the way they think about their business. One mid-size company generated over 1,100 Breakthrough examples as part of a year long campaign. Experience suggests that an organization that successfully executes Breakthrough will permanently change the way their team thinks about the business.