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In the News: Marks Compares Lighting Distribution to the 'Wild West'

on Monday, 06 November 2017. Posted in Distribution

In the News: Marks Compares Lighting Distribution to the 'Wild West'

The lighting distribution market is rife with change. In a recent interview with LightED Magazine, Indian River Consulting Group's Mike Marks called the market “the wild, wild west.” Read Welcome To The Wild, Wild West! in LightED Magazine for Marks' take on who the winners will be in this "frothy" market.

What Is the Best Inside-To-Outside Sales Ratio?

Written by Mike Marks on Wednesday, 25 October 2017. Posted in Distribution

What Is the Best Inside-To-Outside Sales Ratio?

The ideal ratio for inside sales to outside sales ranges from 1:1 to around 10:1. To find your ideal ratio, consider the current reality inside your company and that of others in your industry.

Why Old-School Distributor-Manufacturer Meetings are a Waste of Time

Written by Mike Marks on Wednesday, 04 October 2017. Posted in Webinars, Distribution

Why Old-School Distributor-Manufacturer Meetings are a Waste of Time

If you’re a distributor, you’re going to disagree with your suppliers from time to time. If you’re starting to deploy your sales force more strategically (See: 3 Reasons the Field Sales Role Must Change), these disagreements are even more likely to come up. If you’re reducing your cost to serve by moving some customers to an inside sales model, for example, suppliers with mandates on outside sales representation may take issue.

Regardless of the reason for disagreement, the No. 1 tool at your disposal is to change the dynamic of the distributor-manufacturer meeting.

Webinar Preview: Maximize Your Sales ROI by Focusing on 2 Simple Things

Written by Mike Marks on Monday, 11 September 2017. Posted in Webinars, Distribution

Webinar Preview: Maximize Your Sales ROI by Focusing on 2 Simple Things

During the Sales GPS executive workshop earlier this year, I covered why and how field sales must evolve to meet the changing needs of today’s buyers. During my presentation, I talked about research IRCG conducted for HARDI, and I’ll also be talking about it during my upcoming webcast on The Changing Role of Field Sales September 22. I’ve shared this research many times, and I’ll keep sharing it until people take the key takeaway to heart: that a salesperson’s ability to disrupt the current supplier of a product through their own determination is extremely low.

Responsible for M&A Deal Success? Start Planning Early

Written by Mike Marks on Wednesday, 30 August 2017. Posted in Distribution

Responsible for M&A Deal Success? Start Planning Early

Company CEOs and board members are facing increasing financial accountability for the success of M&A deals, according to a 2017 survey by PWC of Fortune 1,000 executives and senior management recently active in M&A. Are you responsible for an upcoming deal? Early planning can increase the odds of successfully creating value and meeting deal goals.

Charley Hale, Former CEO of FCX Performance, to Keynote Distribution M&A Executive Workshop

on Friday, 25 August 2017. Posted in Distribution

Charley Hale, Former CEO of FCX Performance, to Keynote Distribution M&A Executive Workshop

Charley Hale, former CEO of industrial distributor FCX Performance, will be the keynote speaker at the Distribution M&A Executive Workshop, to be held Oct. 9-11, 2017, in Austin, Texas.

Indian River Consulting Group Expands Distribution and Events Team

on Monday, 07 August 2017. Posted in Distribution

Indian River Consulting Group Expands Distribution and Events Team

Indian River Consulting Group (IRCG), a consulting firm focused on the distribution and manufacturing industries, has grown its team to meet increasing demand for its strategic planning and sales compensation services. The team’s expansion also supports IRCG’s partnership with Modern Distribution Management offering live Executive Workshops on a number of topics critical to distribution leaders.

Overinvested in Sales, Underinvested in Marketing

Written by Mike Marks on Tuesday, 01 August 2017. Posted in Distribution

Overinvested in Sales, Underinvested in Marketing

Today’s buyer takes a much more active role in the buying process. These customers – who would much rather do their own research than be interrupted by a salesperson – are turning to company websites and other sources for product and application information before they buy. Some buyers want very little to do with a sales rep in the traditional sense. Companies willing to adapt to these changes have begun to shift resources away from outside sales to inside sales and/or other specialized roles. But this only solves part of the problem.

With M&A Integration, What You Don’t Know Will Hurt You

on Tuesday, 11 July 2017. Posted in Distribution

With M&A Integration, What You Don’t Know Will Hurt You

Some distributors think that when they buy a company that the integration will go smoothly without their having to invest time getting to know current employees. Unfortunately, it’s more complicated than that.

The No. 1 Mistake Buyers Make in M&A

Written by Mike Marks on Monday, 26 June 2017. Posted in Distribution

The No. 1 Mistake Buyers Make in M&A

Buying a company can be an emotional experience. The closer many distributors get to completing a deal, the more they tend to fall in love with it. The reality is that M&A transactions should be based on financial return, not passion, but that’s the No. 1 mistake I’ve seen distributors make when buying another company.

Watch the video below to learn the two things you can do help keep emotion out of the equation when buying a distribution company. This video was created to address common questions we’ve received since announcing the opening of registration for the Distribution M&A Executive Workshop we’re hosting in partnership with Modern Distribution Management.

Did you enjoy listening to Mike speak about how to avoid common problems in M&A? Join us for IRCG’s and MDM’s M&A Executive Workshop. Sign up today.

The No. 1 Reason Distributors Fail to Make the Digital Transition

Written by Mike Marks on Tuesday, 06 June 2017. Posted in Distribution

The No. 1 Reason Distributors Fail to Make the Digital Transition

At the Industrial Supply Association’s annual convention this year, I spoke about the transition distributors must make to digital. This goes beyond just selling products online. It’s about using digital tools across your organization to serve customers more efficiently and profitably.

Have Your Salespeople Hit the Compensation ‘Point of Diminishing Returns’?

Written by Mike Marks on Tuesday, 30 May 2017. Posted in Distribution

Have Your Salespeople Hit the Compensation ‘Point of Diminishing Returns’?

I’ve worked with dozens and dozens of distributors and manufacturers over the past couple of decades, and in that time, I’ve heard more times than I can count that the field sales team is imperative to building customer relationships and gaining mindshare, justifying the massive expense.

What is the Future of Independents in Distribution?

Written by Mike Marks on Friday, 05 May 2017. Posted in Distribution

What is the Future of Independents in Distribution?

I moderated a panel discussion on the future of the independent distributor in the electrical channel at this week’s National Association of Electrical Distributors National Meeting in Boston.

When It Comes to Digital, Don’t Be the Monkey Holding On to the Mango

on Wednesday, 03 May 2017. Posted in Distribution

When It Comes to Digital, Don’t Be the Monkey Holding On to the Mango

Have you heard the story about how to catch a monkey? Tie a jar with a mango inside to a tree. When the monkey tries to get the mango, his hand gets caught. Don’t be the monkey holding on to the mango.

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