Last week, Dan Parker, President of C.I.Agent Solutions, made some time to share some of the lessons he learned throughout the course of 2014. This week, he’s offering some thoughts and predictions on the year to come, in part two of a two-part post series dissecting his thoughts and musings.
1. More activity that results in accomplishment
Last week, I admitted one of our biggest failures in 2014 – confusing activity with accomplishment. Moving forward, we’re making it a goal to correct that flaw. An actionable way to put this into practice is to strive to follow through on all projects until the end. If we hit a roadblock because something isn’t working or didn’t happen like we thought, instead of just giving up, I plan on being ready and willing to change as needed.
2. Increase sales by 20% in 2015
This may sound unrealistic, but when we look at our sales growth in 2014, it’s definitely obtainable. The best way to do this is to revamp our sales mission and focus on encouraging our internal sales force to work as a team. Improving their communication with each other, and with the other departments, is a key factor in driving sales. The very nature of commissions causes sales teams to be very competitive with each other, but I’m hoping we can alter this mindset and develop synergy that results in everyone winning.
3. Cultivate major corporate accounts
Helping our internal sales force develop as a team should translate into the addition of more corporate accounts. We’d like to add more big players to our portfolio, and will go after them with the hope of our solutions being written into engineering standards for secondary containment at more and more of the large utilities. I envision Dan Koons to spearhead this initiative, as he’s worked closely with several utilities over the last few years that have written C.I.Agent® Polyvinyl Liner System into their standard practices.
4. Increase staff by 3 or 4 people at the minimum
We did this in 2014, and I’m hoping we’ll need to do so in 2015 as well. We must keep adding to our manufacturing team to keep up with the demand of business. We don’t want to burden the guys doing the installations by too much travel, so hiring more people who can be trained to correctly and efficiently install our solutions is ideal. I want to find the right people to fill these roles, ones who will enjoy working here and stick around for a while. More staff means the opportunity to do more fun things, as a company.
5. Continue social media efforts
Not only will we add more people to our manufacturing department, I also hope to grow our digital media/marketing presence as well. I firmly believe that social media like Facebook and Twitter and online content marketing like our blog can enhance a traditional sales force. It sure isn’t going to hurt it! The more data, web content, and information about the industry that we can provide to engineers, the better it is for both them and us. Communication touch points have evolved, and it’s time we get on board in this industry. We’d hate to be left behind.
6. Remember our core industry
In some ways, we need to revert our strategy back to a focus we’ve inadvertently forgotten, and go back to serving as pioneers in alternatives and disruptive technology. We started doing that some in 2014, with the development of our vault and manhole solutions, but we can always do more. Analyzing and staying informed about burgeoning markets like oil and gas are vital to being an industry leader. Simply put, clean water is our business. We can’t forget that our main goal is to protect the water.
Here’s to a fantastic 2015!