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Pending Business: Rules

| August 9, 2021

By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp


PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — This one is about disruption.

First it was “pioneer,” then “innovator,” which became “change-agent.” Now its “disruptor.”

Pioneer was all about accepting the arrows that are aimed at those who carve a path. Innovator was a more scientific approach that required documented proof of performance. Change-agent zeroed in on the mental focus and team impact of leading through change. My favorite is disruptor. Challenge the status quo and generate positive results.

Superstar disruptors like Elon Musk show us how our thinking about everyday life has limits. Howard Stern and Rush Limbaugh changed how, where, and why we listened to radio. Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos blurred the lines between the capabilities of government and the private sector. Here is the common thread: they all break the rules, and then deliver a clear benefit.

Last week I encountered rules that stopped sales progress. In each situation the rules had nothing to do with financials or creative content. The sales rule was put in place to benefit the seller’s side, just the “my way or the highway” mentality. Yet, not only did the rules not make sense or benefit the advertiser, they flew in direct conflict of the sponsor’s goals. No win-win here, just a hurdle for the talent’s performance to overcome when generating results.

Makes you wonder if those rules are impacting the two R’s that help guide sales management: Revenue and Recruitment. Where are the sales disruptors in those organizations? Maybe those organizations stopped listening to the customer and just went with convenient old-school thinking.

How about some of the rules that govern your process, are they still applicable in today’s digital first, high-speed environment?

Here are some real world takeaways:

  • Review the rules of the road. Sometimes what worked three years ago doesn’t have the same impact today.
  • Eat your own dog food. Like the famous dotcom philosophy, try your rule on yourself. See how it feels.
  • Are you handing business off to your competition? Probably unknowingly.
  • Do the rules change with new management or new sellers?
  • Stay focused on the current competitive environment.

Listen carefully to the sales disruptors on your team. Sometimes they see and experience dynamics the rest of us miss. What would you say if a sales team member asked, “Why?”

Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy. Contact Steve Lapa via email at:

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Category: Sales