It might sound too good to be true, but sales and marketing expert Mark Zokle says working from the beach (or the boat, mountains, or other vacation destination) is possible with a little pre-planning and diligence. Here, Mark Zokle discusses how to make this dream a reality.
Interviewing Experts: This morning, we welcome Mark Zokle. Mark is an entrepreneur and experienced sales and marketing executive.
Mark Zokle: Thank you, I’m glad to talk with you today.
Interviewing Experts: Do you give our readers any advice on how to manage your team when you can’t physically be with them?
Mark Zokle: I get asked that question a lot. One of the things that has helped me throughout my career is having a weekly accountability meeting.
Interviewing Experts: Weekly?
Mark Zokle: Yes, this gives me the opportunity to converse with my staff and I’ve found that it’s critical in getting proper corrections – or praises – in place.
Interviewing Experts: Wouldn’t you spend less time if you just met with them once a month?
Mark Zokle: Probably not. Meeting once a month means more time has passed since our last interaction and likely more issues that we need to touch base on.
Interviewing Experts: That makes sense.
Mark Zokle: So for me, waiting until the end of the month isn’t an option.
Interviewing Experts: Do you always meet with your staff in person?
Mark Zokle: Not always. But the Internet has made it very easy to get everyone together even when we are miles apart. If that is the case then it’s always a good idea to have experienced managers in place that can handle day-to-day issues.
Interviewing Experts: We understand you travel quite a bit. How long has it taken you to learn how to manage from afar?
Mark Zokle: I’ve been doing this for over 20 years. It hasn’t always been easy, but the weekly accountability meetings have been a real game changer.
Interviewing Experts: Do you find it difficult to handle training while you’re on the road?
Mark Zokle: When I can, I try to be physically available for the training and recruitment process. However, this is another area where having the right key people in place is invaluable.
Interviewing Experts: What qualities do you look for in your critical management positions?
Mark Zokle: Experience, a track record of results, and a proven ability to lead.
Interviewing Experts: What defines a leader?
Mark Zokle: A leader is someone who is not afraid to get down in the trenches, get their hands dirty, and inspire others by their actions.
Interviewing Experts: In other words, someone who can prove his or her experience?
Mark Zokle: Someone who can leverage their experience and natural talents to motivate others and earn respect by giving respect.
Interviewing Experts: What kind of person do you think it takes to be successful without structure?
Mark Zokle: I believe it takes someone who is capable of creating his or her own structure.
Interviewing Experts: Someone who will make themselves accountable before their business does?
Mark Zokle: Absolutely. It takes a great deal of self-discipline and dedication to effectively self-manage.
Interviewing Experts: Sounds like it’s not for everyone!
Mark Zokle: Perhaps not, but for those who can, it makes it very possible to live the life they always wanted and have the freedom to make their dreams a reality.
Interviewing Experts: Very well said. We thank you again for your time today and look forward to speaking with you again in the future.
Mark Zokle is the National Sales and Marketing Director for Illinois-based BCI Acrylics, Inc. He is a motivational speaker and has influenced the careers of thousands of top sales executives in the county.