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Slide Notes

These same fundamentals have helped us grow 35% yoy and triple profits. We will not be discussing silver bullets here. However, at the end I’ll share with you the 1 thing you can do immediately to improve your new business win rates y 10%.

5 Fundamentals to Grow your Business with Less Stress and More Success

Published on Nov 18, 2015

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5 Fundamentals

TO GROW Your BUsiness With Less Stress and MOre Success
These same fundamentals have helped us grow 35% yoy and triple profits. We will not be discussing silver bullets here. However, at the end I’ll share with you the 1 thing you can do immediately to improve your new business win rates y 10%.
Photo by Casey Horner

Grow...but How?

The Problem- Uncertain, overwhelmed at the thought of growth? Knowing what to do.

Ex: Do I try to win bids?
Do I try paid advertising?
Do I got to this conference?
These are not bad questions- but it’s easy to lose the forest in the trees. Today we are talking about fundamentals that help you select a strategy before getting distracted on the “Tactics”
Photo by Aron Visuals

Some things we'll cover

  • Align Your Business
  • Identify your Best Customers
  • Where to add value in your business
  • How to Implement Quickly
Photo by Ray Schamp


President and CEO of Language Network
President and CEO of Language Network and 2nd Generation owner

We are a language solutions company based in California specializing in interpreting and translation in education, government, and insurance settings.

My background:

Sales and Marketing at venture funded softwware startups Have had every position in the sales and marketing teams.

Most recently lead the commercial teams to grow from $1-$10million a year and acquired by Booking.com
Photo by Slava Bowman

MY Why? 

My why?

Personal Growth and Family Legacy

I love the challenge that running and growing a business present. In my opinion no better way other than learning a language to grow and expand your horizons.

My wife, a Doctor and entrepreneur. Our dog tyson.

My parents- founders of Language Network- getting to retire after 27 years in business.

My partner- my sister Ariel. Who has been my friend in "playing" business as kids.

3 Ways to Grow

  • More Customers
  • Increase Order Frequency
  • Improved Profitibility (Raise Prices + Reduce Expenses)

Not VANITY Metrics...

We focus so much on gross revenue or # of new orders, or new customers.

The reality is growth takes many forms and is up to you the busienss owner or sales leader to determine.

1. Increase the value of the business
2. Improve the profitability
3. Expand market share
4. Increse order volume and penetration from customers

1. Higher order frequency
2. More Customers
3. Higher Prices -Improve Margins
Photo by Jeremy Bishop

"Growth is never by mere chance; it is the result of forces working together"

-J.C. Penney

Photo by tiddlywinker

Fundamentals when applied together unlock business growth

NO Matter the Situation these fundamentals are true.

1. Know Your Financials

You need to understand what’s going on in your business and the only way to do that is look at your financial statements.

Talk about stress! Story- our key metrics when I joined were job #s per month and cash collected and that was it! I didn’t know what to expect or if we would have to shut things down tomorrow.

If you don’t understand where you are- you have no ability to get out of the trees and truly set yourself on a new path.

Photo by kenteegardin

Understand These #$s!

  • (35-46%) Profit Margins
  • (
  • (10-20%) Net Margin
  • (2 mos expense) Working Capital
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Translation Profit Margins

2. Plan (SMART)

This does not need to be a 30 page business plan. It needs to be a SMART Plan.

Photo by Mukumbura

Power of a Plan

  • Light at the end of the tunnel
  • Vision for people to believe in
  • A defined target to hit
Photo by Sirsnapsalot

How OFten Do you Plan?

  • Quarterly?
  • Yearly?
  • 3 Year?
Start with the end in mind. A regular cadence like quarterly allows you to adjust.

As we all know, you have a plan until you get hit in the face.
Photo by alex_ford

3. Primary Customer

Who do you serve Best? 
Knowing who your primary customer will set your business free to focus on value creation and break away from the commodity mold. Unless that’s your model- high volume low cost.

By focusing a specific customer groups you can add value to the experience.

Photo by Hunters Race

What do they value?

1. Expert Knowledge
2. Local Provider
3. Low Price
4. Dedicated Service

Expert Knowledge (By Industry, Subject Matter, Language)
Local Provider
Low Cost
Dedicated Support (Customized to your client's needs)

By focusing on your clients needs- you can add-value to the relationship and work your way up the spectrum from approved vendor to preferred supplier, and ultimately trusted advisor.

Why is this important?
To stand out from your competition
To improve profitability
Streamline operations for fulfilling that industry. You can recruit the right type of linguists for this type of work.

Dream 100 Customers

Spend time and define your Dream 100 Clients (These are who you want to attract and keep as clients)

This will give you a target to hit- logos to add into your customerlist. These are clients that appreciate your services and have great payment terms.

In addition to defining this list- know it takes time.

Only 3 of a 100 are ready to buy at any given time. Do the work to engage the other 97!
Photo by mikeg44311

4. Process

"How we do things here" 
Photo by Jungwoo Hong

Evaluate your Process

  • Less Chaos
  • Predictible Results
  • Deliver on your Brand
  • Build Company Value
  • Automate low value tasks

Top 3 Systems That Add Value

  • Sales and Marketing
  • Project Management
  • Vendor Mangement
Story- we sat down and wrote out all our processes to do everything and the time it takes for each task.
We found out areas of inefficiency that could be improved
Implemented Cloud-Based Software (There are quite a few here this conference-worth talking to!)

5. People

Right People in the Right Seats 
Know that you have a solid foundation- having the right people is everything!

Having “good people” in the right seats and are accountable for their jobs. Everyone knows the plan, their piece of the puzzle, and the numbers they are measured against.

This is where the magic starts to happen (As a service business- how we make our customers, partners, and linguists feel and supported are differentiators)


Story- Booking.com Sales Team

Sales team of 25 reps covering all of North America.


1. I joined the company to find everyone had a territory and quota- with little consistency or camaraderie.

2. Our biggest challenge driving repeatable revenue and results from this huge team.

3. 80/20- our top 4-5 reps were carrying the company with 80% of the results.

4. We had cancellations and false starts with customers because they were oversold and underservices once they were handed off to production.

ANSWER- we needed to fix our ship- it had too many holes in it for us to grow.

1. We looked at the financial performance of the entire sales team and identified every rep needs to bring in a minimum of 3x their cost.

2. Made a plan to turn the team around in two quarters.

3. Our primary customer would be in ideal markets and we would ignore the markets we historically didnt' sell in. Everyone would get to focus on this primary territories.

4. We reworked our sales process by structuring sales pods with 1 production person. We invested in consultative sales training- by having quarterly offsite training on how we sell. (Included production team members) Now a team of 25 lone wolfs were a team of 3 pods working a common territory. Each individual carried a quota but the factor of what they were paid out was determined by the total pods ability to meet their collective goal

5. Right people- this created greater teamwork, accountability, and positive social pressure. Those employees that did not like this environment self-selected to leave. Once this process was in place we ran a 0-churn sales team for 24 months and 90% of our team met and exceeded their individual quotas.

Five Fundamentals

  • Financials
  • Plan
  • Primary Customer
  • Process
  • People
Here you can come back to your big idea and your three key points.

More about creating Haiku Deck lists here:
Photo by EricMagnuson


So if all it takes is 5 fundamentals- why aren't more people doing this?

The difference between good and great- or high growth organizations is the ability to implement.

We don't need new ideas, books, or even seminars- if we would just implement the basics and implement them well!

Consultative Sales Leads to 10% Higher Win Rates

-CSO Insights Research Study
Photo by Japheth Mast

Thank you!

You can end with your contact information, website, etc. -- and include more detail in the Notes if needed.

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SHortcut to IMplement:

  • Financials- Seeing Beyond Numbers, Profit First
  • Operations- Entrepreneur Operating System, Scaling Up
  • Sales/Marketing- Consultative Sales, Inbound Marketing
  • Coach/Mentor- SCORE, EO , YPO, Vistage
Photo by mag3737

How to Select Primary Customers?

  • Demographic:
  • Geography
  • Industry
  • Organization Size
  • Firmographic:
  • Good Payment Terms
  • Profitable client
  • Fun to work with (Appreciate your services)
  • Align your values
  • Requires specific languages or service lines you specialize in

Jordan Evans

Haiku Deck Pro User