The Importance of Focus

Focus TWIB.png

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

We are all guilty of trying to do more than one thing at a time. In our minds we are tricking ourselves into believing LADY WITH TARGETthat are being more efficient and accomplishing more. That is one of the biggest lies we tell ourselves throughout the day. When you try to multi-task you are not being nearly as efficient as you believe you are. To help you stop trying to multi-task I have put together some reasons why you need to remember the importance of focusing on one task at a time.

Tricking Yourself – While you may believe that you are multi-tasking you are actually just task-switching. When it comes to attention to detail our brains only have a limited amount to invest on each task. When you move from one task to another, you are actually wasting more time than you believe you are saving.

Takes Longer – Contrary to what we tell ourselves, when we try to multi-task we are actually spending more time on a task than we are saving. If you pay attention, you will actually notice that it is taking you twice as long to finish multiple tasks as it would if you simply focused on completing one task at a time.

Mistakes – When you switch from one task to another, you are more likely to make mistakes. It has been shown that your brain can handle two complicated tasks without much problem; but when you add more tasks into the mix it becomes overwhelming for your brain and mistakes are more likely going to happen.

Stress – When you are not focusing on only one task at a time, you experience a higher level of stress. The more tasks you are trying to focus on will cause your body to remain in a constant state of high alert. This increases the amount of stress you are feeling and doesn’t allow you to relax.

Miss Details – When you focus on more than one thing at a time, you are more likely to miss important details. This is what is referred to as “inattentional blindness” which refers to your brain noticing its surroundings, but not actually registering any of them. This can be extremely hazardous if your projects require a lot of attention to detail.

Memory Problems – It has been shown that when you try to do two things at once, you will not remember important details. Focusing on more than one task at a time puts you at a higher risk of suffering short term memory loss. It is also harder to get back on track and focus on a task after having to remember where you were or what you were doing.

Relationships Suffer – Multi-tasking can place a lot of strain on relationships. This is caused by stopping a conversation or interrupting plans to check email or voicemails. If you are trying to avoid stress and friction in your relationship keep your priorities in check.


How To Get What You Want

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

Get what you want at work,Throughout your career you have likely wondered why some people always get what they ask for at work. It is not that they are gifted or lucky; they simply understand how to effectively communicate their wants to those in charge. To help you become more effective at asking for what you want at work, I have put together some helpful tips.

Know What You Want

It is common for many people to say that they want something but not be able to clearly explain what it is. This is because they likely haven’t thought it through completely. To know what you want, you should begin by understanding what you want and deciding how you can put it into words in clear and concise manner.

Don’t Be Afraid

The most common thing that keeps you from asking for something is the fear of being rejected. The only thing keeping you from getting what you want is being afraid to ask for it. When you overcome this fear, you will be able to clearly ask for what you want and not be afraid of a negative outcome.

Know Who You Are Speaking To

It is common for us to lose sight of who we are actually speaking to when we ask for something at work. If you feel intimidated by someone, you will likely find it difficult to speak with them. To overcome this, simply keep in mind that they are human too and that they will likely listen to what you have to say and be respectful of your needs.

Pay Attention

When you ask for something at work, you may receive a counter offer. It is important that you clearly understand what is being offered and how your needs will be met. If you feel that the counter offer is acceptable, then you can agree to the terms without feeling as though you were not treated fairly. If you are not sure of what is being offered, don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Small Wins

If you are after a long-term solution it is important that you begin by asking for small things at first. This will make it easier for those in charge to agree to your requests without feeling as though they have given you too much.

If you are met with rejection when you first ask for something, do not be afraid to try again. Simply try a different approach but remain determined until your needs are met. Those who are not driven will likely never get what they want. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want, you may be surprised at the willingness of your superiors to agree to your terms.


Calculating the Cost of Acquiring New Clients

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

Calculating costs of a new client, marketing, salesAs a business owner you understand the importance of maintaining and expanding your client base. If you have been in business for a long time, you may not understand the true costs associated with acquiring new clients while keeping your existing ones. To help you understand the costs associated with attracting new clients, I have listed some helpful information to help you understand everything involved.

Many business owners do not accurately calculate the costs associated with acquiring new clients, also referred to as cost per acquisition. To properly calculate your cost per acquisition you need to begin by making a list of every marketing campaign you have ran over a specific period of time. To obtain the most relevant data you should measure over a 12-month period. But many sales professionals believe that you can still calculate a relevant bit of data by going back six months.

Once you have listed all of the marketing campaigns you have used, it is now time to list the cost of each of the campaigns you ran during the time frame you are using. These fees should include any copywriting fees, media listing fees and design fees. You should also take into consideration the cost of you and your employees time spent on each of these campaigns as well as all of the other costs used during this time. These additional costs include utilities, rent, internet and cell phone charges to list a few.

After you have calculated all of these costs and added them up, you have successfully calculated the cost for one ad. Next, you will have to determine how many sales were generated by that particular ad. This may be one of the hardest parts of calculating the cost of acquiring a new client. To help you effectively measure how many clients a particular ad brings in, you may want to create a specific phone number or website to use only in that ad.

It is much easier to measure the effectiveness of online marketing campaigns because you can utilize all of the tools available on your website to monitor traffic. In many cases these numbers can be automatically tracked and produced in a report that is often emailed to you. However, you still need to take into consideration any costs associated with running an online campaign.

Calculating the cost of acquiring new clients can be somewhat tedious and confusing. But it is an effective way to see where you marketing campaigns are working and where they aren’t. If you are trying to determine the most effective marketing technique, this is a great way to do so.

How to Handle Hearing “No” In Sales


First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

Hearing the word No, salesAnyone who has worked in the field of sales has heard the word “no” at some point. It can be one of the hardest things to hear, especially when you are trying to close a deal. In some cases, rejection has led to many short lived sales careers. What you need to know is that it is something that everyone has had to deal with and it does not reflect who you are as a person or your level of professionalism. Below you will find some helpful ways to handle hearing “no”.


This is not something that many sales professionals are good at, but it can be quite beneficial. When you allow a potential client to think things over or continue browsing your products, they may be more open to hearing more about them. You may be surprised at how many times that “no” turns into a “yes” when they are given time to consider what you have to offer.


Any time you are faced with rejection it can be devastating to your confidence. What you need to understand about rejection is that it is not about you. It could simply be that your timing is off, or the business may be experiencing difficulties you are not aware of. The word “no” is never about you; there is always an underlying reason behind it.


Creating a connection with your clients is a great way to cultivate a positive business relationship. When your clients know that your services and products are reliable, they will more than likely choose to say “yes” to you. In some cases, they may say “no” but that can simply be based on the fact that they are not currently in need of your services. When this happens, just reach out to them after a few weeks. Their circumstances may have changed and they may be ready to close the deal.


As a sales professional you need to become a great listener. This will help you learn what your clients are interested in and what they need. When you know what they are looking for, you can then design your sales pitch around their specific set of needs.


If you have a likable personality and are friendly and outgoing, you will likely hear “yes” a lot more than you hear “no”. If a client finds you to be likable and approachable, they are more open to doing business with you and your company. While they may say “no” at first, if your personality is friendly you may be able to still close that deal.


The more you know about the products or services you are selling, the easier it will be to convince someone of their benefits. While they may say “no” at first, the more you explain and demonstrate the positive aspects of what you are selling, the more likely they are to change their mind.


How to Become a Better Sales Professional

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

effective sales professionalIt’s no secret that a career in sales is one of the most demanding and difficult career paths to follow. However, it can also be one of the most rewarding and satisfying; that is, once you learn how to become an effective sales professional. When you learn the skills necessary to become successful, you will discover that a career in sales is definitely worth the effort. To help you become a better sales professional, I have put together some helpful tips.


One of the best things you can do to become a better sales professional is to listen. When you listen rather than speak about yourself, your products or your services within the first few moments of meeting someone you have the opportunity to hear what they are actually in need of. When you meet a prospective client for the first time, you want to introduce yourself but remember not to ramble on about yourself or what you are selling.

Ask Questions

To improve your sales skills, you should not focus on trying to sell your product or services. What you should do is to ask questions and find out more about the needs of your prospect. When you forcefully try to sell something, you will likely encounter resistance. But, the more that you know about your prospective client, the easier it will be to approach them with information about what you have to offer.

Be Curious

When speaking with a client, you should ask them about the products or services they are currently using. Ask them if they are happy or if they see room for improvement. This is a great way to find out what they really want and offer them products or services that will fill those needs.

Pay Attention

It is just as important to pay attention to what your prospective client isn’t saying as well as what they are saying. You can get a sense if a potential client is too busy or is pressed for time. When you get this feeling, ask them if this is a good time or if they would like to reschedule. They will appreciate your flexibility and will often be open to rescheduling for a better time.

Be Brief

While it is polite to answer questions when they are asked, it is important that you keep your answers brief and to the point. Now is not the time to go into a long-winded response to a simple question. Always remember, it is not about you, it is about showing prospect why you are right for them.


Social Media and Sales

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

Many of us have come to believe that any time we spend on social media is a waste of time. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Social media has opened new doors and marketing techniques that have proven to be beneficial for businesses. The only thing is, you have to commit to them in order to reap the benefits. As with any type of marketing campaign, you need to commit to it in order for it to be effective. While you may not notice immediate results through social media, as you continue to build your fan base and become more active you will soon notice that your audience is responding.

For this article we are going to focus on the most popular and widely used social media site, Facebook. Many businesses that are a part of this social network have seen their sales dramatically increase. This is because Facebook allows you to give your company a voice and a personality. Rather than simply being a logo on a webpage, your business becomes approachable. It now has a voice and can interact and communicate with your customers.

As your customers discover that you are now on this social media platform, you will notice that you are gaining followers and they are now interacting with each other on your page. As a business owner, this is marketing magic. Your customers now have a platform in which they can express their opinions about your products or services. But, you should not simply observe the interaction taking place on your page, you need to get involved. Customers love it when businesses respond to their comments. It makes them feel that their opinion really does matter and that you care about what is being said about your business.

Social media also allows businesses to offer special promotions that are only available to their followers. This is another way to make your loyal customers feel rewarded and singled out from others. You may want to consider offering your followers a coupon code or discount that can only be seen by them. Not only does this reward them for their loyalty, it also gets them to visit your website.

Facebook can also be used as marketing tool to promote a new product or service that your company may be offering. Using your Facebook page as a marketing tool allows you to promote your new products and services for free to all of your followers. If you product of service is beneficial or innovative, your content may be shared by your followers which can then increase your online visibility.

You do not have to limit yourself to only using Facebook, there are other social media platforms that have been shown to be just as effective. You may want to consider implementing YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram into your marketing plans. They can help you reach millions of potential customers which can help increase your sales dramatically.

How To Let Your Customers Know You Value Them

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

Customers, Letting Customers know you value them, salesAs a successful sales professional, you understand that you would not have reached the level of success you have without your loyal clients. But what many sales professionals often wonder about is how to express your gratitude for all that they have done. They have placed their faith and business in your hands, how do you properly say “thank you” for that. Well, there are quite a number of ways that you can thank your clients, to help you choose the ones that are right for you; I have put together a list of some of the most effective.

One of the first things you can do is to ask about their future needs. If you have been working with the same client for a long period of time, you may want to show that you are interested in growing with them. During your next call or meeting, simply ask them if there is anything you can do to ensure that your services will continue to be beneficial for them in the future. This will show them that you are interested in maintaining a long-term business relationship while also offering to make any necessary changes or modifications to your services that can be beneficial for them. If you are willing to expand and grow in order to meet the needs of your client they will likely remain with you for a long period of time.

Another effective way to show your client’s how much you value them and their business is to ask if the services or products you provide are meeting their needs. Are they consistently receiving their orders in a timely fashion? Have there ever been any problems with any of the services you have provided. These questions may be just what your client needs to express their opinions on your services, method of deliver, and speed of delivery. There may be problems in the system that you were not aware of until you asked. Your clients can provide you with valuable information that you can use to improve and enhance your business.
If you have a long-term client that you know is experiencing any type of difficulty in their business reach out to them and ask if there is any way you can help. It can be something as simple as cutting their monthly order in half or renegotiating the terms of their contract that can ensure they are able to remain in business. Reward your loyal customers by helping them in any way possible, when their business improves, you may be rewarded with a larger amount of sales.

Asking your clients to provide you with feedback is another way to show them that you value their opinion. There may have been things that your clients have wanted to address but just weren’t sure how to bring them up. If you ask them for feedback, they may feel more comfortable and open to sharing their honest opinion of your business and services. Client feedback is also a great way to see areas where improvements may be beneficial for current and future clients. Never be afraid to ask for feedback, it is a valuable tool for you and your client.

Maintaining an honest relationship with your client is also an effective way to show them that their business is valued. Rather than pushing the newest, most expensive product, show them a less expensive product that will still suit their needs. They will appreciate the fact that you were honest enough to recommends a different product, and they will trust that you have their best interests in mind rather than the profit you may have made from a larger sale.

In addition to these methods, you always have the option of sending each of your clients a small gift to show them how much you appreciate their continued support. It doesn’t have to be anything big, it can simply be a calendar or coffee cup; but your clients will know that you are thinking of them and that you see them as more than another sale. As a sales professional, you should always take a few moments out of each day to thank each and every one of your clients.

Personality Traits of Highly Successful Salespeople

First published in
Thriving Women In Business
By Debbie Mrazek

Everyone who is in any type of business, whether it is in a sales capacity or a CEO position should share some of the same personality traits. Traits are what has given them the drive and passion for what they do. They are also what will help them achieve their goals, no matter what they are. No matter how you measure success, whether it is in the title that you hold or how much you earn a month, you likely share the same personality traits as other successful individuals in your field. To help you understand and take note of these traits, I have listed some of the most common shared by highly successful salespeople.

The Need to Compete

It is virtually impossible to find a successful salesperson that does not have a highly developed need to compete. One of the most basic definitions of being successful is the need to always win. Highly successful individuals can become obsessed with finding new ways in which they can obtain an advantage over their competition. A high level of competitiveness is often confused with a strong work ethic, but it is the drive to compete and win that helps successful people achieve their goals.

Failure Is Not an Issue

Every successful salesperson will tell you that their success did not come easy. They all experienced their own failures along the way, but rather than allowing those setbacks to stop them altogether; they used those experiences as the motivation they needed to keep pursuing their ultimate goal. Each failure that you experience on the road to success should be viewed as a lesson that will help you make better decisions later in your career. While many salespeople will use these setbacks as a reason to stop, a highly motivated and successful person will persevere and learn from each experience.

Willing to Improve

A successful individual is always open to learning new ways in which they can improve themselves in order to become a better business leader. Successful individuals tend to be their own worst enemy because they are never satisfied with the work that they do. They always believe that they can do better, and will set out to prove that fact by accepting bigger challenges. The need to constantly improve is a huge motivator in a successful individual.

Attention to Detail

This may be one of the most obsessive of the traits shared by successful salespeople. While it may have the potential to drive others a little bit crazy, it is what drives successful individuals to strive for excellence. While you may have been told throughout school and early on in your career not to sweat the small stuff, that is exactly what successful people do on a regular basis. If they did not focus on every little detail of a deal, they may not have become as highly successful as they are. If you want to become a successful salesperson, you need to pay attention to detail.

Take Accountability

Successful people do not rely on others to get the job done. They are constantly looking at ways in which they find solutions using the assets they have at their disposal. If they make a mistake during the process, they will not push it off on someone else, instead, they will own up to it and think of ways that they can avoid the same mistake in the future.

Effective Communicators

Successful leaders are ones that can effectively communicate their ideas and goals with others. If you ask them what they are trying to accomplish they will be able to tell you in a detailed and concise manner. They are sure of themselves and what they do and can make you believe in them as well. The ability to effectively communicate is by far one of the most important and valuable skills a successful person can have.


In the business world it is virtually impossible to achieve any level of success without being authentic. This can refer to your level of trustworthiness and transparency with those you work with. If you can clearly and honestly express your opinions then you are working from an authentic space. Not everyone will agree with you, but they will never doubt where you come from or where you stand on a subject.


One of the most important traits a successful individual can possess is the ability to remain calm when everything around them is falling apart. A successful individual will not lose their sense of direction or purpose when faced with a crisis.