Friday, March 9, 2007

Daily Sales Lesson 6: Be There for the Right Reasons

Be There for the Right Reason. We all have our reasons. Some of our reasons are not the best reasons, either. Some reasons are not really reasons, either, they are rationalizations. Excuses. To NOT do something.

Let's be clear here: there may be certain, actual, real reasons that you should not do certain things. Such as inability to raise sufficient capital. Or lack of expertise in a given area. Ethical concerns. Or criminal penalties.

But in reality, the reasons we give ourselves to avoid certain things are usually based on our personal shortcomings.

Unfortunately, the reasons we do things are often based on those same shallow shortcomings. Material things seem to motivate so many in the sales field, and there's nothing wrong with making money, but if you are trying to make money because you think that the material things are going to make you happy, you are doing it for the wrong reason. I find this to be the big one in this field.

And really, there's a lot of companies that need sales people, and not all of them sell things that you can intuitively say "Wow--I can see how that REALLY helps people." Not many at all.

Why should you concern yourself with helping people? Good question.

Here's why: The more people you help to achieve their goals, the more they will be able to help you achieve your goals. It reminds me of a quote I once read:

"Champions pride themselves on being honest, open and straightforward. They carry these philosophies into everything they do, and are unwilling to sacrifice them, While some people acquire wealth dishonestly, professional performers know real success lies in who you become, as opposed to what you acquire. The great ones focus their efforts on becoming the kind of people who can attract the things they want out of life. Some amateur performers believe success can be acquired (even if it's done dishonestly) and will manifest feelings of happiness. Average people have a lottery-like mentality, which explains why the lottery is so popular. The lottery mentality is not dishonest, but it carries the premise that more money and material possessions automatically lead to being happier and more fulfilled. The great ones have learned the real victory is what they become as a result of the struggle. Removing the struggle removes the victory. If honesty is removed, the richness of the achievement is diminished." Quoted from Steve Siebold

I think that pretty much sums it up (and it's Friday).

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, March 8, 2007

Daily Sales Lesson 5: Foundational Key Series - Clear Your Mind

Clear Your Mind. Sounds easy, right? It's a LOT harder than you think.

Once you have accomplished the feat of clearing your mind, you can do it again more easily. It takes a lot of practice to become proficient at it. The problem: most can't do it. Why? Because they don't understand why they should, and because they never practive.

It's a very hard thing to do for most people. Most people occupy themselves with their own thoughts, fears, fantasies, worries, and all manner of things that come into one's head during a typical day, and most people are OK with that. Most people think that if they are constantly thinking about something--mulling over some thought(s)--that they are being productive.

They're wrong.

Clearing your mind is like clearing your mental desk. Although I'm not one of them, I like people who have clean desks. Maybe a keyboard, a notepad, some pens, and maybe a document or 2. These people, I have found in my experience, are true task masters (not all of them, but I think you catch my drift). They are the people that when given a task, stick to it and see it through until it is accomplished. Then they throw away the post-it and move on to the next task.

When your mind is uncluttered, you have the ability to focus all of your mental energy on one thing at a time. You eliminate scatter-brained-ness, which seems to be the state most people are living in today.

Why is it so hard to clear your mind? Mainly it's because of the insecurities people have. Parts of themselves they deeply fear facing. If you can just plain STOP all of the internal conversations going through your mind, you are faced with something that is incredibly daunting to most people: Themselves. If you have to take an honest, long, hard look at yourself, most people would give themselves an F (if they are truly honest, and not that they deserve it, but that's how people judge themselves). Unfortunately, these days it is far more common to hear "I'm not a bad person", or "I'm really good at what I do", or some other version of the self-talk people use to delude themselves into thinking they are someone they are not.

Another reason it is so difficult to clear your mind is that being a scatterbrain is virually rewarded these days. In the workplace they don't call it "scatterbrainedness", they call it multitasking. Really, it's just the inability to focus, and it's unfortunate.

It's not an easy task when you begin--mainly from the fear. Remember that calming your mind and making your thoughts still will only benefit you in the long run, because when you are able to do it, you will then begin to be able to work with the "Objective You". The real you. You may have to put some work into past issues or admit things about yourself that you REALLY don't want to (and have been trying to convince yourself are not true anyway, to make things easier on yourself--or at least that's what you think), and that's a hard thing to do.

When we open up our minds to the power of clarity, focus, and positive energy, we begin to be able to manifest that which we want in our lives. Yes, like "Abra-Cadabra". Sounds funny and/or unbelievable, but it is absolutely true.

If you've never been able to do it, then you probably don't believe me. But if you have, you know the things that are not congruent with our values, our missions, and our beliefs just fade away. They eliminate themselves. You stop investing your time, effort, and emotional energies into them because there is never going to be any ROI on that investment. We know it intuitively, and the universe we live in makes sure of it.

A clear mind is a powerful mind. A clear mind is a focused mind. A clear mind is a convincing mind. A clear mind is a positive, loving mind that attracts everything it needs, and automatically rejects everything that does not support, bolster, assist, enhance, teach, or help to discover that which will teach you your next big lesson in life.

In my experience, everything happens for a reason, and you recieve all the lessons and teachings and information you need to be successful in whatever your pursuit--at the exact time you need it. The problem here is that most people are so busy with the conversations and self-talk inside their heads that they are unaware when they are given exactly who/what they need at exactly the moment they need it. They usually ignore it. They walk right on by. They are completely oblivious--wholly unaware.

That's another thing. Your powers of observation and sensitivity are magnified beyond comprehension when you are able to still your mind. We've all heard the old saying in some sales training class that you have 2 ears and one mouth for a reason. I like to think that a sale is mainly made by listening, observing, and understanding a prospect, and letting them know you understand. Fully and throughly, without a doubt. When the prospect truly believes that you care about their problems, they are going to believe in you and your ability to help them. But they need to feel it to begin believing. The best way to make them feel this way about them is to really care. Really--care about their problems, care about their company, care about THEM as people. And they'll realize it. Not always (in the case of them being unaware and self-occupied), but most of the time, because as I mentioned: there is POWER in having a clear mind, and it differentiates you from the vast majority of people on the planet, let alone the majority of salespeople.

One other thing to note is that if someone cannot see a particular quality within themselves, it will be impossible for them to believe that it exists in others. If you do not see yourself as an intelligent, loving, highly-aware, selfless spiritual being who truly wants to help others and bring positive change to the world, it will be impossible for you to even consider that others just might really be that way. It's just another form of limiting beliefs, because if you are unaware of what is really out there, you will have no idea what you can aspire to.

I'm not saying that I am able to do this better than anyone else, or all the time, or holding myself out there as a great example, but I know I'm better at it than I used to be. A LOT better. And I can feel it when I'm focused and of pure mind--and so can others.

We've all heard it before: Attitude is Everything. And it is. The attitude with which we approach things determines the outcome beforehand. An "Attitude of Gratitude" and being thankful for all the people and blessings in our lives is one of the keys to success. When you are able to stop your self-talk and stop your mind from racing, you will become focused. You will become focused on how to get better based on your objective self--the real you. And once you realize who you really are, you cannot help to become humble.

And people will fall in love with you.

So to end today's lesson, I'll quote my man Steve Siebold:

"While average people never consider the magnitude humility plays in the ability to solicit help from others, the pros have reverence for it. Professional performers know humility is one of the most effective approaches ever created to influence people. The case for humility, even for the best performers, is easily made. Even members of the world class stumble and fall many more times than they succeed. Humility is the natural order of the human condition, yet average people walk around clouded by ego and false pride. This is undoubtedly costing them dearly in relations with others. A braggart is essentially saying, "I'm better than you." That's not a good approach to a species who craves the feeling of importance. Champions recognize the damage done through boasting, and adopt an attitude of gracious humility. The champion's self-confidence is no less than a braggart's. As a matter of fact, all of the pros I've ever known have what I call inner arrogance. The difference: they don't display this arrogance outside their own thought process. This supreme confidence is necessary to compete at the world-class level, but Pros know how to conceal this well-earned, positive sense of self."

Clear your mind and humble yourself naturally.

Everyone will like you more, and that will help you become more successful.


Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Daily Sales Lesson 4: Foundational Key Series - A Healthy Body Leads to A Healthy Mind

A Healthy Body Leads to a Healthy Mind. We all know this is the case, but in our hectic daily lives, we often find ourselves saying "Oh, it doesn't matter", or "No big deal" when it comes to a lot of the little things--like what we eat.

Personally, I think that what we eat is one of the most important desicions we make every day, for many reasons. It affects every aspect of our lives with far more impact than most us us realize. The choices we make, however small, add up to life-changing sums.

From our morning coffee making us want a nap (or more coffee) every afternoon, to the bacon-double-cheeseburger & fries for lunch (that definitely makes us want a nap!), to having a few too many cocktails on the golf course (which can be bad for many reasons, health probably not the least among them), our daily routines have a LOT to do with our success.

The first sentence in this post is a link to a book on that changed my life.

Let me tell you a little story.

I'm a good ol' boy from the Midwest. I grew up on meat and potatoes, hotdish (Yaa, don'tcha know?), and all kinds of sugary sweets, especially during the holidays. M-M-M-M-M (think Quizno's slogan). I ate a lot. I was a pretty healthy kid until about the age of 7 or 8 when I began to put on a few pounds. I just ate what everyone else ate (or so I thought until I got older). It wasn't quite working for me, but I didn't know any better, and wasn't motivated enough to begin learning about health until a few years later.

So there I am, 5'10", 245, a floor broker on the MGEX. Extra weight helps (sometimes) when you are a floor trader because you can push people around (and knock them down if need be) and get your trades done. Because I've trained myself to be positive from a very young age, I saw it as a positive. But it wasn't because I wasn't happy. I was making money, but I was lethargic. I was young (early 20's), and I dreaded getting out of bed in the morning. My filet mignon and a few martini's lifestyle wasn't working for me, health-wise. But I didn't know any better until a few years later.

A friend of mine, Dave, turned me on to a few different things. New information I would not have found without his suggestion. Truthfully, I rejected his stuff out of hand immediately. Didn't want to know any more about some hippy-freakin' regime of eating salds and juices. Come on. Are you crazy?

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance--that principle is contempt prior to investigation." - Herbert Spencer, British philosopher.

The thing is, Dave's a smart guy. Smarter than me in some areas. He decided that some (not all) of the things he was pointing me towards worked for him, so he was pursuing them. I couldn't keep wondering, so I had to take anther look. The book he recommended was Cleanse and Purify Thyself, by Dr. Richard Anderson. This guy was kind of out there, but there is this thing inside of us all (I think) that just lets us know when we are hearing the truth. I knew I was reading the truth (the guy's book has more footnotes than any book I ever read in college). So I kept reading.

Long story short, I learned a LOT about stuff I thought I knew everything about, and in the end, I implemented a lot of his recommendations and ended up losing 85 pounds. You heard me, 85 pounds. 50 pounds in the first month, and 35 in the next 3. He recommends some very radical changes (although not really, when you understand the "why" of it all). So I am a believer in his ways. In fact, I need to constantly remind myself to follow them, because I know they work, even if I want to give it the old "Oh, it doesn't matter".

Because it does. And not only do I know it, I live it every day.

And guess what? I feel AWESOME every day. The only time I feel tired is after I've climbed a mountain (and in a very good way--with a sense of accomplishment). You know what else? People know how I feel. I don't have to tell them either, they know. They can see it. And so can my customers. Your customers can see how you feel, too. Really.

If you've seen The Secret, you know that when you are at the top of your game, others at the top of their game will be attracted to you. This is a good thing.

This blog is about The Sales Life Daily. "Good things, sometimes, take time." -From the movie Wall Street.

Every day, if we constantly make improvements--however samll they may be, we can become the people we want to be in all aspects of our lives, because the small changes add up to life-changing results.

Our habits are important. Incredibly Important. From my man Steve Siebold (I'm a huge fan of his, but I haven't read his books-yet!:

"Average performers think of habits as something to break, like smoking or eating too much. Professional performers know successful habits are the keys to the kingdom. Each and every day, the great ones reinforce their success habits, such as exercise, proper diet, showing up early/staying late, and studying their field. Champions have a sacred respect for the power that habits exhibit in their life. The pros know if they allow their championship habits to slip for even one day, the habit will begin to atrophy. The great ones know it's more difficult to develop a championship habit than to not lose it. They understand the magnificent force of momentum can work for or against them. As a result, they tend to protect their success habits with an almost religious fervor. Champions are keenly aware of how their habits impact every area of their lives, because they always look inside themselves and listen for answers. Average people are oblivious to success-habit formation, unless the pain from an unhealthy habit becomes too great. Habits are the raw materials from which the great ones are made."

Most people believe that it takes 21 days to develop a habit. Do you want to get better or not?

One of them is inevitable.

Ask Yourself: What am I going to do in the next 21 days?


Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Daily Sales Lesson 3: Foundational Key Series - Part 1: Positive Mental Attitude

Positive Mental Attitude. It means a lot of things to a lot of people. To me, it means maintaining your positive belief in your success regardless of the obstacles you will undoubtedly encounter. To maintain your PMA, you need to protect yourself, and you must especially protect your mind (no tinfoil hats though, sorry).

Your mind is the most valuable sales tool you have, so I'm gonna tell you how groom it and how to protect it. Or at least how I do it. These days, there is increasingly more and more "stuff" out in the mass consciousness, and electromagnetic ratiation is the biggest form of pollution we face. I hope these work for you, too.

Stay Focused. I know a man that makes a few million bucks a month who tells me that he doesn't watch the news. Never. He says that when he does, he feels bad for a little while, and because of the kind of person he is, he diverts his energy into thinking about how to solve the world's problems (which is just fine), and he finds himself losing days trying to focus on something that is not his expertise. He's a sales guy. He's not a politician, although he is regularly on TV. And when he tries to do something other than that which he has trained his whole life, he falters. Granted, he can afford to "falter" for the rest of his life, but most of us aren't quite there yet. Most sales guys have no problem putting their nose to the grindstone and "Crankin' Out Da Teeth" (as I used to say--great story for a future post, anyway...).

Focusing is easy. Maintaining focus is hard. Block out anything that will not help you close the sale. Stay away from negativity and energy vampires. Just Stay Focused.

Stay Positive. Well, duh. Yes, that's right--STAY POSITIVE. "Gee Pete, How do I do that?" Glad you asked. Ahem, let me explain.

We all run into stimulus every day--a phone call from a semi-irritated client that can be made happy again with the right email or phone call or 3, for example. You can react two ways to the call: positively or negatively. The positive response is above--it'll just take a phone call or an email (or 3) to solve and they'll be happy as a pig in mud all over again. Easy.

Or you could react negatively: What the hell's wrong with this fryckin' software? Why doesn't this crap ever work? I need a new Job! This is a great way to overreact out of emotion. As we know, the emotional man is always based on fear (can't speak for the ladies), and in this case, fear of lost security. Let me illustrate: pissed customer=lost business=lost income=pissed wife=pissed creditors=pissed at self for not reacting differently when the customer was on the horn in the first place! Stay Positive! (Funny enough, fear of lost security is the single largest inner (subconscious) objection around). Stay Positive!

Feel Good About Your Mission. That's right. You better, 'cuz if ya don't--they'll know. Who'll know? Everyone will know. It will be obvious. If you don't feel good about what you are doing for whatever reason, it will come through. If you think it's too expensive, so will your prospect. If you think there's a better product/service elsewhere, so will your customer. If you think you don't know everything there is to know about all things knowable in your marketplace, so will your customer.

If you believe in what you are doing (self talk: when they buy this package, they are not only going to increase their profitability, hire more american into great jobs, increase their shareholder value, but these guys will love me and I'll be able to sell them all kinds of stuff in the future, PLUS I'm gettin' a BIG check! This Rocks!), your customers will know.

Believe you can. I can't say it enough. You gotta believe. If you don't believe in you, who will? Not me (unless you're on my team). You're the competition baby (that's what the others in your office are thinking). Sure you might have a great sales manager or someone to coach you through things, but if you don't have the fire inside you, they're gonna know. And because they've been around, they're going to know that the customer will know too. Unless you just wanna be a 50 thou a year schmuck. Those gigs are all over the place. Take your pick.

But if you believe you CAN make it to the higher levels, then you will--if you put in the effort.

"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe." - Anatole France.

Stay Healthy. When you are healthy, your body does a far better job getting rid of the bad parts of the things we eat, keeping us healthy longer. What we eat is very important, but what we think is even more important. When you dwell on negativity, it WILL manifest itself in your life at some point. When you dwell on positivty, it WILL manifest itself in your life at some point. Which one would you rather manifest?

It is proven in quantum physics that when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. Start changing the way you look at things. Start thinking better. More positively. Dwell on Love. Not necesarily about sex, but on how great EVERYTHING is and how everything works together so well. Get into that flow--That mindset is the mindset that will allow you to accomplish anything.

Which brings me at a quote from my man Steve Siebold (master of mental toughness):

"Average performers never consider the broad scope and significance love has on everything we do. Professional performers know we can only operate from one of two frames of consciousness at any given time --ego or spirit. Middle-class performers are masters of operating from ego in which pride and self-righteousness are the objectives of the game. Amateur performers believe their success is primarily their own doing. They believe in the self-made man/woman theory. The world class is aware that all good things come from the spirit of love. They know love is the natural order of the universe, and that ego and self-pride have been created by man over the centuries to cover a fragile self-image. Many people feel inferior to others and mask their feelings by displaying false pride and bravado. The great ones embrace love as the root of their success and feelings of fulfillment. They know that without the loving guidance and support of others, they could not have reached or even dreamed of aspiring to the world class. Their recognition of and gratitude for the power of love creates more abundance in their lives. This fountain of potential continues to bless the champions. The only thing that can clog the system is ego, which is the evil stepchild of fear. The great ones lock the door when ego comes to town. They only acknowledge the spirit-based consciousness, which they recognize by its calling card: love and abundance. Ego cannot exist in this realm, only gratitude. While the amateur egotistically believes he is responsible for his great success, the pros know that the abundance of life comes from a far greater source."

Just Believe.


Monday, March 5, 2007

Daily Sales Lesson 2: The 6 Foundational Keys for a Successful Sales Life

When I think about it, this should really be Lesson One, but when you just dive right into blogging like I have in the last 24 hours, you don't really plan that far ahead (at least not when it comes to blogging). So this is Lesson Two simply because I wrote it after Lesson One.
Sometimes Free is Too Expensive...
I don't want to bore you with the foundation metaphor for too long, other than to say that building a solid foundation is important to build a successful: sale, marketing campaign, house, business, relationship--all of them require something firm to hold the weight. Without it, it will crumble into nothing...eventually.

A lot of you who are in sales shouldn't be. You have the wrong attitude. Short story: one of the last clients I was working for (a social networking "
Web 2.0" company--whoo hoo!, I'm so cool) had me working on their advertising sales campaign. They had another guy there who talked and talked and talked about how he worked in SanFrancisco during the dotcom boom and he knows all about which ones are going to be successful and he can see 'em coming and we're on the right track and he can sell ice to Eskimos (those of us who have been around have met this guy before--there's one in every office, usually). As it turns out, he wasn't even in sales back then. He was a staffing guy--a recruiter, which certainly takes SOME sales abilities, but generally not in the role he was in: VERY well-funded company, HUGE comp packages being handed out left and right--people were banging down their door to work there. I know because I was one of them. The company I was leading sales for at the time was a J2EE consulting shop, and his company was our client. My company built his company's technology. I sold our experts to them (on a very luctrative contract). So much for sellin' ice to Eskimos! (I didn't tell him this for a few weeks--I just kept handing him the rope).

Anyway, so he puts himself out there as "Mr. Dotcom", and I'm pretty much keeping to myself because I know how these projects go, and one small miscalculation on the part of the developers could set us back weeks, months even (Hmm, I wonder what I can do with my spare time? Blog anyone?). He does nothing but whine and moan and bitch and complain--a good 2 hours a day he's wasting time talking to the developers (and wasting THEIR time) talking about stupid little features that won't be implemented for 10 months (at least), but he's decided the reason he can't sell anything is that this stupid little feature isn't implemented, and the only reason he even knows about a feature in development is because he's annoying the S*** out of the developers, and they feed him nuggets every once in a while to get him the heck out of their offices, and because they know he's an egotistical sonofabitch that loves to go around the office thinking he's one-up on someone, ANYONE (especially me, since I was kicking his (everyone's)ass in every metric known to track salespeople). All veteran technology salespeople know what I'm talking about.

And it's frustrating as can be to have this kind of negative energy right there in the office right next to you, all_day_long. One day, after having a sales team lunch with the CEO (and this idiot making me embarrassed to be in the same room, let alone on the same team as he is by asking THE most ignorant questions; mr. dotcom--where'd ya go?), I had had it. Just plain had it. Now I'm not a very emotional guy most of the time, and I can deal with basically everything that I've ever had to in a positive, proactive manner, but this was IT with this sucker. I was done with him. And he kept yap-yap-yappin' his yapper while I'm trying to make calls, and I decide it's time for him to be quiet. So I say to him, "Hey, man, why don't you stop bitching and moaning, and start selling?". He says, "whatever, man, this is B***S**T!". Me: "just shut the hell up and sell--stop whining--nobody wants to hear it!"

I should tell you that this was a fairly small office, and that I am a rather loud man when I want to be--I'm a former floor trader and a karaoke Rock Star, so I'm probably not your first pick when it comes to selecting shouting contest opponents. Also, the CEO was in my boss' office about 20 feet away from us at the time in a meeting since after lunch. Now's when it gets good.

He says, "Dude, nobody's gonna be able to sell anything from now on until this get's done!". At this point I'm done trying to rationalize with him. Me: "Shut up and Sell! SHUT UP and SELL!! SHUT UP AND SELL!!! SHUT UP AND SELL!!!! SHUT UP AND SELL!!!!". Somewhere along number 4 or 5 the CEO walks out of the my boss' office, and although I'm sure he heard me while in his meeting (it was over anyway), he was quite interested to see the now cowering Eskimo closer had absolutely nothing to say. What a F'n relief! Finally! Peace!

It's funny when pessimists are confronted with their own reality and forced to look at it. They change their tune quickly when they see how negatively they are affecting the team, but usually only when they know they are being watched much more closely when the sales group leader has had it. Of course, after that, he was "Mr. Happy", Mr. "gonna make a million dollars". I wish him the best, but we'll see.

I tell this story to get back to the foundation of being successful in the Sales Life that we choose. Maybe you recognize yourself. Yoube you can use this to see where you are truly at mentally. Figure out where your game is--objectively. Then take action to improve.

I'm going to break it down like this: Here's some solid advice you need in order to be successful in sales. You may be successful (for a little while) in sales even if you reject them, but you will not have a 25 year career that allows you to live your dreams daily.

Here they are:

Positive Mental Attitude. If you're a "can't" thinker you will not succeed at sales unless you are in a boom market where you are an order taker rather than a closer. Order taking can be fun, sometimes--even for top people, but it allows us to get comfortable, and comfortable salespeople are not leaders--uncomfortable ones are. They are the change agents of the marketplace, and they know they can get it done without any doubts. Sure, they know they will face challenges, but they've already decided what the outcome will be. Most people limit themselves with their own beliefs.

Healthy Body Leads to a Healthy Mind.We know this intuitively. "You are what you eat" is a phrase we've all heard. A phrase I heard our lovely antagonist use is: "I haven't had my rockstar (energy drink) yet--I can't even think." This is par for the course. I'm not saying having some coffee in the morning (or your favorite poison in the evening) will prevent you from being successful in sales, but if you take notice, you will find that the true performers are those who lead very balanced lives and are generally healthier and happier than most. What I'm saying is that you must balance everything you do: long hours at the office deserve long hours in the mountains (or wherever your favorite easy getaway happens to be). Indulging in anything requires a balance on the other end with healthy living. Too much of anything is not good, and we here in America eat way too much. Skip a meal. This one move could have truly dramatic results. Rats fed 30% less than normal live 30% longer than usual–and in a recent study at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, the hearts of the leaner human calorie-cutters appeared 10 to 15 years younger than those of regular eaters. Remember, this blog is "The Sales Life". I wasn't kidding.

Clear Your Mind. When you have all the thoughts of daily life going through your mind as you approach the office in the morning, take a moment. Take a deep breath or 2 (or 50). Dr. Wayne Dyer wrote a book I like a lot called "Get in the Gap"where he writes about slowing your mind and clearing the clutter and eliminating negativity through a very simple meditation that only takes a moment (after you've practiced for a little bit). Some may feel this is the opposite of what you need to do to "get pumped up" for a big sales day. This is not about enthusiasm here, it's about focusing on your goals and opening yourself up to recieving the abundance in the universe. I know, that might be a little bit too "kumbaya" for some closers, but hey--I'm telling you what works for me.

Be there for the Right Reasons.Why do you wake up in the morning? Sure, we know you want to make a bunch of money--we all do. Do you want to make a difference? Selling computers or software or real estate or pretty much most things you can sell that will make you the kind of living you want to make aren't going to make a difference in this world for the better. Some things will (like this business). In recent years, I've realized that "the word class invests a substantial amount of time insuring their future happiness by creating congruency between who they are, what they're doing , and where they're going. Champions are masters at doing such things as marrying the right person, selecting jobs they love, and building friendships with people they admire and respect. As a result, they indirectly develop an incredible sense of gratitude and happiness" (quoted from Steve Siebold--I'll probably quote him a lot, since he is quite wise, imho).

Know Your Goals.You've heard it before: It's a numbers game. The more calls, the more appointments, the more pitches, the more sales. Simple, really, even though most salespeople that "get it" still don't follow through. That's why we have the 80/20 rule: 20% of the salespeople make 80% of the sales (and vice versa), meaning 80% of you out there (well, maybe not 80% of MY readers) are not making the kind of money you want to be. You simply need to break down your income goals and reverse engineer. If this is a little remedial for some of you, please forgive me. (It's not for 80% of you).

Example: Your income goal: $200,000/yr, Average sale nets: $2000
$200,000/$2000 = 100 sales. Easy Right? How do you get there? You have a year to accomplish your goal.
100 sales/12 months/4 weeks = 2.083 sales/wk.
Call it 2 sales a week, with a 3 sale week once every 10 weeks.
Make 3 your weekly goal (or 4).
It takes you 100 calls to get an appointment, and you have a 30% close ratio (which you're working on)
This means you need to make 300 calls per sale.
This means you need to make 900 calls per week, or 180 calls per day.
Then Start Smilin' & Dialin'!

That's it. Really. If you map out your plan like this and FOLLOW THROUGH, there's no reason at all that you shouldn't clobber you goal and pull in almost $300,000 that year if you tweak your pitch and practice, practice, practice. That's what it takes to be successful in
the world's most important, challenging, and rewarding profession.

6. Just Believe. You must believe you can accomplish your mission. You must believe it without doubt. You must believe it without reservation. You must believe there is nothing that can stop you short of a nuclear war. You must believe that your products and servies are superior to everyone else in the marketplace. You must believe that your customers are getting an INCREDIBLE value. You must believe that you are helping them to accomplish their business goals in a positive way by increasing their revenues or saving them time or money or all three. You must believe you have the best solution, and that your customers are lucky to get to work with such an incredible Account Executive like you.

Just Believe It.


As always, I love your feedback.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Daily Sales Lesson 1: Be the Doberman

So I'm a dog guy. I love the pooches. If I could stay home all day to throw the ball around and wrestle around with my buddy, I would (lucky for me, sometimes I can). The dog that lives with me is a lab/shephard/rottweiler mix. He's a good dog. But at my house (and elsewhere), I'm the Doberman.

This is a lesson I learned a number of years ago while in a training class with probably my best sales manager ever. I for get his name, but I'm sure he's doing fine (and won't mind). At the time I was working for a home improvement company that mainly sold windows and siding (one of the best, most profitable businesses to be in for closers--200k/yr easy if you know what you're doing, granted it IS a FT job--6 days a week of piling on the miles (which is why I got out). Anyway...).

So we all know that when you are in the field selling in someone's home, there are a lot of dynamics going on. Kids. Pets. Neighbors. Neighbors' kids. Neighbors' pets. Personality conflicts. Powerplays and struggles. Personal spaces and comfort zones invaded. Lots of uncomfortable stuff. And this is all before you say word one about any features or benefits. But when you know how the meeting is going to end before you begin (7 Habits-I recommend this book), meaning that you are there on a mission, and you know you will accomplish it (Power of Full Engagement-another one) one way or another. A line from the relatively new (it's not Glengarry Glenross) movie Boiler Room is: "A sale is made on every call--he closes you, or you close him. Who's it gonna be?" rings relatively true. If you are in your stride and you know your game, you will be unstoppable. But I digress.

The little power struggles along the way that you will encounter will be easily overcome by maintaining the Doberman attitude. You may be asking yourself, "What is that, exactly?". I'll tell you. Have you ever seen a Doberman Pinscher? They are gorgeous animals. Lean. Fit. And highly aggressive. You don't want to get into a disagreement with one of them, because they'll rip your throat out. That's their instinct. And if you've ever been near one who you've just met, you have zero doubt in your mind who's territory you are standing on. None. You just know. And if you take that Doberman, and put him in the car and drive 1000 miles away, and let him out of the car, guess what? The next person that walks by will ALSO have zero doubt who's territory they are in. Why? Because he's a Doberman, that's why. There is no question or doubt. It is understood.

It's not easy to ALWAYS "Be the Doberman", because that takes a lot of energy, but in my experience, once you have set the tone and expectation of the customer for what is about to happen, they begin to understand who's territory they are in as well--even though it is their home.

Here's an example of how to "Be the Doberman" in this sales scenario: I've rung the doorbell and am waiting for an answer. Mr. Smith (names have been changed to protect the closed) answers the door chewin' a pork chop with an unspoken attitude that is screaming "Just TRY to challenge ME--you ain't gonna sell me nuthin'!". You can feel his hostile energy coming at you and you know his intention is to make you uncomfortable. "Whaddaya want?" he says, thinking he's in charge. "I'm here for our 6:30 appointment", I say, as I step closer and closer to the door (I always stand one step down from the top so I "get bigger" after they answer the door). "I don't have no appointment with you", he says. I say, "Yes you do, right now--at 6:30, your wife set it up for right now so you'd be here to see the windows she's buying." (ALWAYS assume the sale!). "Oh yeah", he says.

Now this might not seem like an incredibly mind-blowing sales technique, but from that moment on as you open the door, enter his home, and start warming him and his wife up to you, he KNOWS you will not be intimidated by him with his construction-site logic. Just ain't happenin'. He may try again to assert authority and try to regain control of the conversation, but at that point he is easily dismissed or made fun of (in a joking, light-hearted, HAHAHA kinda manner--just like his wife does), and you can simply roll over those attempts as you are taking out your paperwork, since he has already had the idea that his "WIFE IS BUYING NEW WINDOWS TONIGHT" implanted in his brain from the first moment he met you. Throughout your presentation you should be reinforcing this, that: "You Are Buying New Windows Tonight". This stuff works, and more often than not, they want new windows (they wouldn't have set the appointment up if they weren't at least thinking about it), but they just need to get used to the idea of actually buying them--you're helping them get used to the idea by simply being around them.

Everyone around you needs to buy those windows. They just need to get used to the idea. Sometimes it takes time (that's what weak closers say). Sometimes it takes force of personal energy on a level most don't acknowledge, which is why I recommend The Power of Full Engagement. When you put your all into anything, you will become unstoppable.

Be the Doberman.


Since this is my first "real" post on Topic, let me know what you think. PJ

Oh Yeah...

So I called this blog Our Biz Life Blog, because for guys like me, business is our life. Day in, Day out--it's what we are always thinking about, and trying to constantly improve, and since I'm better than I used to be at it, maybe I can help you improve too. Or at least show you a really cool electric car, or closing technique, or cool story that drives home a point and allows you perspective on what you are going through. Or an idea to make you a few bucks (at your own risk, of course, but I know a thing or 2). Or something like that.

Anyway, that's why I called it OURBIZLIFE--that's what it's about. Us. Business. Our Lives. Simple, really. Can't believe nobody's thought of it before. Ha.