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Norm Bilsbury, Ph.D. | Champaign, IL

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VP Sales & Marketing, Litania Sports Group

"When Norm and I first met we had been looking for a strategic Organizational Development & Training partner to support our team and maximize business development. From a philosophical standpoint we found alignment with Norm in terms of developing our talent, the needs of the market, and their approach. My seniors leaders and I personally attended and piloted Norm’s programs for several months to vet the quality of delivery, content, and impact. That pilot ultimately led to the decision to long term partnership with Topline Consulting/Sandler Training as a true strategic partner for us. I am pleased to offer a strong positive recommendation in Norm as an organizational consultant, coach, & facilitator."

Chairman, Venture Capitalist & Entrepreneur

"As a consultant, Norm worked with our CEO and myself over several meetings to first uncover and diagnose the issues and obstacles to execution within one of my companies. These discussions, along with an assessment of talent pool, revealed the skill, knowledge, performance gaps we needed to address. To kick off our performance improvement efforts, Norm then facilitated a retreat for our sales team and managers which was very engaging, interactive and informative. Our entire team responded very favorably. Norm is a tremendous resource and trusted strategic partner."

CEO & Founder, Serionix

"Coming from a technical background, I have had to learn business on the fly over the last few years. While I have seen growth in many regards, I have struggled to put a defined business development & sales process in place for Serionix. Enter Norm. In a matter of less than two months, he has helped me to recognize and identify specific components of an effective business development and sales system, and to establish a process that places each component in proper order. Norm’s materials are at the same time straightforward and elegant, conveying the elements of good sales and biz dev processes in a simple but profound manner. He has helped me establish repeatable processes for qualifying leads and effectively communicating our value proposition; perhaps just as important, he has taught me sound principles for eliminating unqualified leads as quickly as possible. He is an engaging communicator, teacher, and coach who manages to be direct without being insulting, and to push hard without being overbearing. The end result and bottom line for me is growth, currently exemplified by an acceleration of our business development activities with major commercial partners. I look forward to exceptional growth in this area as I continue to work with Norm in the future, and fully expect to see a massive return on investment in the coming months."

Sales Ops. Mgr., Gill Athletics

"As a former successful D1 Track & Field Coach and Head Recruiter, I was well aware an organization’s need for strategic and tactical alignment, shared culture, and processes. I was also aware of having a comprehensive system facilitating these results needed to be in place if these elements were to be lasting and sustainable. Further, I knew the importance of being able to differentiate a program or a company in the marketplace in order to win. Yet admittedly, my tools for doing so were not always as unique or as well articulated as I would have preferred. I sometimes struggled with these challenges. I can now say working with Norm on an almost weekly basis for over the past 6 months has truly improved my confidence, my personal resources for doing so, and has, without exaggeration, been facilitating a very positive cultural change systemic to our entire sales organization. Bottom line: our sales team culture and effectiveness are vastly improved working with Norm on a regular basis. This has been an investment well made."

President & CEO, Taylor Studios

"Business Development practices are challenges that successful companies master—and our task to do so as a Design/Build Studio has been no different. And yet we have struggled at times to articulate a philosophy that everyone has bought into and regularly executed. Prior to working with Norm, we vetted 3 references through phone calls to assess fit and quality of the program in advance. After only a short period, our team is now more on the same page. We have teased out important team conversations, and already advanced important BD conversations. Norm’s teaching and facilitation style was energetic, professional, and yet challenging. Further, his use of various I/O psychology tools for coaching provided important insights for me as a leader, and aided in enhancing overall team effectiveness."

President & CEO, ESS Clean

"I met Norm through our kid’s swim club, and I became interested in his executive coaching after hearing about his business. The timing for our meeting was perfect in that several aspects of my leadership style, our team dynamics, and business processes needed to be tweaked. To address these challenges, I engaged Norm for his executive coaching services for a period of several months. Norm’s listening skills, poignant questions, and use of psychological & behavioral assessments revealed some clear negative patterns in the way I was spending my time and the way I was working with my team. Norm knows what he is doing. He challenged me and made me uncomfortable enough to initiate change without going over the top and insulting me. His ability to walk this fine line has yielded some tremendous professional and personal insights and a renewed energy for my work as a Leader. Our business is charging ahead and breaking new ground as a result". 

Chairman & Owner, Benefit Planning Consultants, Inc.

"I have known Norm Bilsbury for almost 20 years. As a fellow investor, business partner, friend, advisor and facilitator---his contributions have been timely, strategic, and profitable for both myself and my various organizations. I would like to extend one of my highest recommendations in him".

Director of Sales & Marketing,

"Along with my sales team, I have been attending Norm’s weekly business development training programs for the last 6 months on a weekly basis. The tools are good. As a whole, it has helped our organization craft a more efficient sales system. As a presenter Norm is very knowledgeable, has a style that is relatable, and makes everyone feel comfortable."

O.D. Consultant & Dean

"As former Senior Director of Organizational Development at Abbott Labs, Norm worked with us on a consultative basis for a number of projects across several departments. This included facilitating a series of workshops at our annual meeting and providing in depth facilitation and training later at our home office. He provided High Performance Team training for both our R&D Engineers and our Customer Service Departments. Both of which who were launching new teams at the time. He also facilitated a number of Leadership workshops. In each case he received very positive feedback from the participants and department heads."

Collegiate Marketing, Inc.

"In the process of restructuring of our enterprise sales processes, Norm worked closely with me and my executive and sales teams to assess our business landscape, align our strategy, and then introduce a phased roll out of training and coaching to support those initiatives. We have noticed an immediate impact of the sales training with our team, and there has also been a lasting commitment by my team to embrace those outcomes and work to implement them over the long haul. We continue to work with Norm and value his contributions to our business."

National Sales Director, Teleflex Medical

"Stormin Norm spoke at our national sales meeting and received very positive feedback from the entire organization. Our president, CFO, Managers, and Sales team all agreed that his delivery was valuable. He first worked with us on the front end to understand our needs, concerns, & current sales strategy. He then developed customized content address our needs in a practical and impactful way. As a speaker, Norm then engaged the audience realistically, authentically, and meaningfully. In the end, our team felt that they all benefitted from his contributions."

Senior Territory Manager, Smith & Nephew ENT

"Norm is an excellent sales trainer, coach, and facilitator who mentored me through an important career change. He coached me through the tough transition of changing industries--making a transition into a medical device sales role having no prior medical background. His coaching and encouragement helped me to finish second in a training class where many of my peers had, on average, 5 years of tenure in the industry. Ultimately, Norm's mentoring set me up for success in my role and an eventual promotion."

Samuel Hoff

Patti Engineering

Industry: Engineering

Samuel Hoff, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Patti Engineering, talks about how his company’s sales more than doubled after Sandler sales training. “In 2007, we were a bunch of really good engineers and really bad salespeople; now we’re the same good engineers but we’re a lot smarter about the sales process.” In 2007 the company did a little less than $3 million in business and spent $1.10 for every dollar it made. Last year it did $7.5 million in business and spent 88¢ for every dollar it made. “My personal income is seven times what it was in 2007,” says Hoff. “That’s living proof of the success of Sandler.”

Professor & Tech-Start Up Founder

"I am pleased to provide my highest recommendation for colleague Norm Bilsbury. In the department of Bioengineering we are seeking to train a new generation of engineering/manager leaders in the field. Norm came highly recommended from the program co-founder in the Business School. He developed a co-curricular set of workshops for our students on the topic of "Leadership IQ" in which he led discussions on topics ranging from emotional intelligence, team leadership, & managing stressful situations.. The students were extremely enthusiastic about Norm's engaging teaching style. Norm is someone who takes the topic of interpersonal relationships seriously, and has made a study of how active listening, personal integrity, honest communication, and strategies that allow others to "save face" can help people build strong working relationships. I know that his strengths can be applied towards helping organizations get the best efforts from their people"

Dir. Sales & Leadership Effectiveness, Horizon Eps.

"Norm has served our organization by helping oversee and conduct consulting and training initiatives for various teams and departments within our organization. Norm is a consulting professional, who serves the needs of organizations in a very personable and effective way. The ongoing impact on our team has been significant, with a noted increase in the proficiency and leadership acumen in our culture and team. Norm has the ability to connect with a broad range of personalities, skills sets and backgrounds. Through his content and delivery, he motivates and challenges participants with very practical content and next steps. I deeply appreciate working with Norm on a wide array of projects - and highly recommend him for any development or training need you have."





Ken Harris

Health o meter

Industry: Healthcare

Ken Harris is Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Health o meter, which manufactures devices for the medical community. He describes his history with Sandler, which spans 15 years and four companies. “Sandler is the one process I’ve seen that puts customer behaviors and salespeople behaviors together to help the customer in a way that ends up helping the company.” Harris uses a sports analogy to describe the impact of a great system, whether in college sports or sales training: “In a college team, turnover is every four years by definition, yet dynasties exist because they have good systems. Sales is also a skill set that needs to be constantly honed and, for me, Sandler is the only method that provides that level of consistent and intimate training.”

Dir. Global Sales Training, Oracle

"Norm is one of the most valuable people I have ever met. He is a multi-skilled person. Passionate, eager and insightful Owner, with great sense of humor. Is always capable of adapting to new working environments. Norm is a great asset to any sales and management mentoring craft."

Principal, Raleigh Consulting Group

"I have known Norm for over 20 years and worked with him on several organizational cultural change projects -- through his education in training & development, his consulting sales, marketing, training experiences, he brings keen intelligence, high energy, and strong integrity to all of his endeavors. His clients are going to get some great training with a terrific teacher."

Roy Cook

Merrill Lynch

Industry: Financial Planning

Roy Cook, who works with Merrill Lynch to help clients strategize their retirement plans, explains his mindset when he started Sandler training. “When I was introduced to Sandler I didn’t think I had any problems,” he says. He did have problems, though, including the lack of a systematic approach to generating new business. “Sandler has a very logical, very cerebral approach to sales. I saw more than 20 percent growth in my business year after year. Some of that I attribute to the market, but a lot of it I attribute to the Sandler process, with me implementing it and working more efficiently.”

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