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Using your Values as a Sales Tool

August 7, 2009

valuesYesterday on Planet Good Radio, I interviewed Nadine Thompson and Angela Soper, the co-authors of Values Sell: Transforming Purpose Into Profit Through Creative Sales and Distribution Strategies (Social Venture Network).

While most of us understand that sales are the lifeblood of our businesses, it can sometimes be challenging to incorporate our values successfully into our day-to-day operations.  The cool thing is: it can be done.  And it can be profitable!

Nadine and Angela have put together an inspiring and practical guide drawn from real-world examples.  Companies like Tom’s of Maine, Seventh Generation, Honest Tea and a host of others that aren’t quite on everyone’s radar (yet).

These companies have all had to figure out how to compete against businesses who aren’t driven by values and are only concerned about maximizing profits. Sound familiar?

So how did they do it?  The simple answer is: Clarity. Creativity. Innovation. And authentic dedication to their passions!

Want more details?  Of course you do.  And there’s a whole slew of them in the book.

But since you came here looking for at least a few answers, let me give you a taste from the opening chapter: Establishing a Clear and Profitable Vision.  This is a topic that I repeatedly hammer home with my own clients. And here are some questions you should answer before you begin planning your sales strategies:

  • How does your product or service improve people’s lives?
  • What would the world look like if you fulfilled your mission 100%?
  • Is your vision aligned with the community’s interests? (i.e., your target market’s interests?)
  • Are you open to adjusting that vision as your organization grows?  Or will the fulfillment of your vision put you out of business? (and that might be a good thing)
  • Are your core values and business operations in total alignment?

“Values Sell” is a wonderful book, but it’s also part of a larger series put out by the Social Venture Network.  I’ve read about half of the books in that series, and am looking forward to the remaining few.  I encourage you to check them out, too.

In the meantime, take a listen to the interview with Angela and Nadine.  They each offer additional advice for budding social entrepreneurs — advice they wish they’d been given when they first launched.

And let us know what you think: have you found success or have you been frustrated by attempts at incorporating your values into your business? Please share!

p.s. – There’s more great podcasts available at Planet Good Radio.  You can subscribe and get weekly reminders so you don’t miss a one.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. August 9, 2009 7:06 pm

    Thank you, Tea for sharing your work and those of other social pioneers. I’m grateful for the new information and reminders about what feeds me and fuels true meaning into my business. In appreciation, Marcia

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