Boost Your Business: Be the best professional

It seems as if everyone is calling themselves a professional, whether they’re competent in their job or not. There are the titles of “Professional Marketing Ninja,” “Professional Social Media Rockstar,” and the (perhaps more common) titles of “Professional Sales Executive” and “Professional Entrepreneur.” But are these considered ‘real’ professionals? For that matter, what does a real professional look like?

I believe professionalism is more than being dressed for success or saying the right things. To be truly professional is about being prepared to compete and win by having a plan along with a course of action. To be truly professional is about always learning more about what you do and ensuring you do it as well or better than your competition.

To determine whether you are prepared to be a professional, I suggest asking yourself the following questions:

  1. Am I using my strengths as an individual and as a company? As you prepare to compete, you want to play from a position of strength. Knowing what your strengths are isn’t arrogance, it’s having confidence in what you can offer.
  2. Am I truly aware of what my competition is doing? Decide what they are not doing (or not doing well) so you can do it (and do it better). Understand how you can differentiate from them and prepare your approach to go after them intentionally and aggressively, yet professionally.
  3. Have I analyzed my current business trends? This is above and beyond running reports, but rather looking at trends by market segments, product categories, and time frames. The goal here is to understand where to put your focus for retention. Establish your immediate plan of action and decide what activities are going to have the greatest impact on business growth.
  4. Do I understand my customer’s business? Think about what they want and need from their standpoint, not what you want to sell them. Then be strategic in your approach and sales process. This is about knowing how you can positively impact their business.

So, prepare and plan to compete aggressively and be the best professional you can be.

* Maria L. Novak Dugan is president of Marketing Solutions & Business Development, a firm in West Chester, PA, offering creative marketing services and goal implementation for small businesses. For more information, contact Maria at 610-405-0633 or Maria@Maria-L-Novak.com or visit www.Maria-L-Novak.com

** The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the ownership or management of Chadds Ford Live. We welcome opposing viewpoints. Readers may comment in the comments section or they may submit a Letter to the Editor to editor@chaddsfordlive.com

 

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About Maria Novak Dugan

Maria L. Novak Dugan is president of Marketing Solutions & Business Development, a firm in West Chester, PA, offering creative marketing services and goal implementation for small & medium sized businesses. For more information, contact Maria at 610-405-0633 or MariaNovak001@yahoo.com or visit www.Maria-L-Novak.com She has more than 20 years experience in the Marketing & Sales Industry...13 of those as the sole Sales Representative for a Pennsylvania payroll company growing their client base by over 500 percent. Maria Novak Dugan is a member of the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce, Latino Luncheon Group of West Chester, Neighbors in Business of the Glen Mills Area, News4Women, and The Associated Press. She is also the former Managing Director of the Delaware Chapter of eWomenNetwork. Creating, developing, and conducting this division of a national organization strengthened her knowledge of networking, event planning, fundraising, and small-business development.

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