When Adam and I started Digital Leadership Associates (DLA) www.DLAignite.comand when we first met Alex and he came on board with us we had a dream, which is to change the world with social. We realised that there are a number of “sub dreams” that we need to achieve to get us where we need to be.
One of those was to be global. But could we do this and do all the other things a start-up needs to do? I set the team a target, “must do this before our two year anniversary!” was my guidance at the Board meeting.
That would make us the first global social selling company, to add to many of our other firsts.
Why is being Global Important?
When I was at Oracle I remember Ray Laine talking about Globalisation, about how the world was a single market and how as a business we needed to meet the global market needs. How we needed to unshackle the business from certain processes so we could meet global clients needs. From day one here at DLA we have seen ourselves as Global, because of the reach that Social Media gives us. We have friends, contacts and customers across the globe. But there is a difference of talking a good story and getting on a plane and walking the walk.
I see, lots of people from start-ups posting on social media how many miles they have flown in the last year. This is all very grand I know, but it doesn’t scale.
We also see people who open a US subsidiary but nothing else, this is useful, but does not really help global companies.
Our clients came to us and said, interesting that you are a UK company but what about our US, Mexican, Singapore subsidiary? People love the methodology and realise that there is nothing like it in the world, which is why we want this rolled out globally. But there was also a sting in that tail, our clients wanted this rolled out with local people, with local knowledge. This is a challenge for a self funded start-up.
We are not LinkedIn Trainers
This might shock people, we do not see ourselves as LinkedIn trainers, a list came out recently of the top 100 Linkedin trainers and I was so glad I wasn’t on it. One of the strengths with DLA is that we are not LinkedIn trainers. Being able to teach a tool is too restrictive. We always set ourselves up as Social Selling consultants. Social selling is a change in mindset after all, and teaching people about a tool isn’t really much good, a fool with a tool, is still a fool. I should point out that Alex Low is recognised as the best Sales Navigator person in the world, but he will tell you, “if you are not social, Sales Navigator is pretty useless to you”.
We don’t come from a Linkedin training background, our skills are in rolling large projects across multiple counties in big companies. It’s just so happens that we have done this with social selling.
Social selling is different in Canada, Germany, Singapore, Italy, so how do you get a global methodology delivered locally?
Our Secret Sauce
The secret sauce, of course, is what enables us to get the people change and habit change. This is down to the power of change management. We don’t need to use profile writers, which doesn’t get an ROI. We also don’t use webinars, again, webinars are well known in the world of change management at changing nothing. If anybody offers you profile writing and or webinars, you must run as fast as you can!
Global Set of Partners
The problem many companies have is they build training programs that only person x can deliver, this again is restrictive and does not scale. We have designed our programs, so that as long as you are authorised and trained you can deliver them. This was a brave move, but we have already found that our first reseller got amazing results, which enabled us to move on and take on more partners.
This also means we are global, but local. Too many people, go global and forget about that actually it matters “where the rubber hits the road” which is with the local sales teams in local countries and cities.
So How Did We Do?
I set the target that we needed to be global by our second Birthday and we just made it with 6 days to spare.
The Challenge to You
If you are a global company and want to see real results in incremental (net new) revenue and competitive advantage then get in touch.
Want to Join us?
If you want to join us as a reseller and help us implement global social transformation programs then get contact me on social https://www.linkedin.com/in/timothyhughessocialselling
People who read this article also read these: