Learnings from The Netherlands

“The earth is motionless

And poised in space …

A great bird resting in its flight

Between the alleys of the stars.

It is the wind’s hour off ….

The wind has nestled down among the corn ….

The two speak privately together,

Awaiting the whirr of wings.”

from Interim by Lola Ridge

This is not my first article on this topic:

Do You Have What It Takes to Be an Interim Sales Leader Bryophytes or How to Make an Interim Sales Leader Successful Ensuring Success — The Considerations Around Your Interim or Fractional Sales Leader

The Right Answer Is Always “No”

“Do you double-dip your Oreo? Please answer the question yes or no.”

from A Yes-or-No Answer by Jane Shore

Conversion rates have different definitions or meanings, depending on the nature of the business or the stage of the sales cycle. And in every case, they carry tremendous importance as an indicator of success and efficiency.

Hence the answer to the question, “Are you happy with your conversion rate,” always needs to be “No.” While your rate may be good vs. an industry benchmark or better than last year, there is always room for improvement…

Because It Is a Myth That Employees Are Less Productive Outside the Office

“Start by dispelling the myths that stand between you and your ability to capture this competitive opportunity.”


Thank you, Gartner, for using a recent study to dispel seven hybrid workforce myths:

Myth #1: Our existing remote work strategy will work for a hybrid workforce

Myth #2: Employees are less productive outside the office

Myth #3: We need to monitor and measure what employees are doing

Myth #4: Our jobs can’t be done remotely

Myth #5: We need in-person contact to sustain our culture

Myth #6: Hybrid…

The Art of Successfully Selling Something That Does Not Exist

“You aren’t being deceptive when you run a presale.”

Laura McPherson

Sometimes I find presales defined as the set of activities carried out before a customer is acquired, involving functions like Sales Engineers, Solution Consultants, or Solution Architects.

The pre-selling I am referring to in this article may involve those individuals as well. Though, it is the entire process of successfully closing a sale …of a product that does not yet exist!

Like the infamous vaporware, for example, a software or hardware product that has been advertised but is not…

With Focus on The Fractional CRO, CSO, VP of Sales, Sales Director

“Don’t pay the ferryman until he gets you to the other side.”

Song lyric by Chris de Burgh

Full disclosure right at the beginning: The headline states, “The Ultimate Guide,” but I just used that phrase to draw you in and have you read the actual article. Because, while I think of the article as a “guide”, there is nothing “ultimate” about how to structure those fees.

Fee models for fractional executives have an art and a science, a balance between multiple factors, and an element of “as-high-or-as-low-as-desperation-takes-you”…

The Hunt for the Elusive Revenue Synergies

“Nearly a quarter of acquirers are able to achieve at least 80 percent of their revenue synergy targets.”


  • Synergies.
  • The interaction or cooperation of two or more organizations to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects.
  • One plus one equals three.
  • The holy grail of mergers and acquisitions.

Resulting from companies with different cultures, management styles, clients, and even hiring practices, a merged entity generally experiences its greatest heartburn from the human impact.

This is particularly true for sales organizations, which McKinsey pronounced ‘one of the…

13 Best Practices How to Survive When You Are the Bearer of Bad News

“I don’t know what this message means

Don’t blame me, I’m just the messenger”

from Binary by Crüxshadows

Everyone has to deliver bad news sometimes.

Own it, deliver it, and move on. But only be a bearer of bad news when it is yours. Don’t get caught in a trap being the messenger for bad news that really ought to be delivered by someone else. And on the flip side, do not engage messengers yourself.

  • If you need to let a team member go, do it…

… At Least Not By Itself

“ ‘Hope’ is the thing with feathers -

That perches in the soul -

And sings the tune without the words -

And never stops - at all -”

from Hope by Emily Dickinson

So many times, I am catching myself in a conversation using the phrase ‘I hope’:

  • “I hope I will have closed this deal by Friday.”
  • “I hope to make our call at 10 am.”
  • “I hope we will have a chance to meet again.”
  • “I hope this information helps.”

It comes out so easily because it is soft; it is…

Sales Enabled by Sunshine, Location, and Alcohol

Photo by author

“in vino veritas”

After my rant a few months ago about salespeople in car dealerships, I now want to sing the praise of the professional (sales)people working in wineries.

In recent years they have done a fantastic job on me! When asked how many clubs we are members of, I can’t even give a number. All I know is that there are charges on my credit card, and in turn, I receive very regularly the ‘gift’ of a great variety of wines unavailable in my local wine store.

The majority…

Accept Them, Use Them to Your Advantage, and Move On

Photo by Anne Gosewehr

“A seemingly absurd or self-contradictory statement or proposition that when investigated or explained may prove to be well-founded or true.”

Definition of Paradox

A paradox is a seemingly absurd or self-contradictory statement or proposition. Like…

- Save money by spending it.

- If I know one thing, it’s that I know nothing.

- This is the beginning of the end.

And as a side note, for those who are initiated, there is also Supplee’s paradox (called the submarine paradox), a physical paradox that arises when considering…

Henning Schwinum

Chief Evangelist for Interim & Fractional Sales Leadership

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