What’s A Perfect Week Look Like?

When I interview salespeople, whether they are an existing employee, or a candidate for a sales position, one of my most resourceful questions is, What’s a perfect week look like for you in your current role?

Often they will tell me “it depends.” This tells me how much of their time they are being proactive or reactive – letting other people determine how they spend their time. [Read more…]

Get in the Door Podcast with Steve Kloyda and Professor Plum – Episode #302

SHOW NOTES:

This week the “Professor” and I tackle Chapter 2 from, Letters From A Self-Made Merchant To His Son by George Horace Lorimer. The book is a classic.  [Read more…]

You’re Not Being Tested

He walked into my office and sat down.  I asked him, “How you doing since our last session?”  He replied with, “I’m still struggling with confidence.  I wish I saw me how others see me.  I want to earn their (prospects) respect and when they come into the store, I want them to value working with me.  I want to offer them value, so they’ll buy from me.”

I asked him, “What do you think would be of value for them?”  He answered with, “The benefits of the machine.  What it can do.  To show them I know what I’m talking about.”

He obviously had been through the standard, new hire sales training program that emphasis’ features and benefits, with a summary test on product knowledge before releasing them into the wild.  This traditional onboarding program gives him great frustration, because he is not making his numbers and the month is closing in 12 days. [Read more…]

Prospects Define Value by Your Commitment and Persistence

Lately I’m hearing a lot of salespeople say they call prospects, leave messages and they never call them back.  Most times the prospect doesn’t answer the phone.  In an age where every phone has Caller ID it is a split second decision is quickly ignore the interruption.  When this is true most of the time, we want to ask ourselves, “Why?”

Salesperson Phone

The strongest influence in personal behavior is weighing the consequences of any action.  What are the consequences of answering the phone or returning a voice mail message of any unknown person?  Another factor in determining what we do and don’t is fear.  Combine those two and here is what the prospect is thinking; “I don’t know this person; I don’t know why they are calling; I’m busy; I’m afraid if I answer, I’ll never get that time back; and if I avoid it, it will go away.”  And guess what, you do.  You stop calling.  The prospect was right! [Read more…]

What Are You Willing to Tolerate?

Last week I spent a day on a ride-along with a sales rep visiting existing accounts and meeting new prospects. The conversations during the miles we covered were mixed between business and personal topics. One personal story was about how the rep can’t find her hotspot at home, so she has been using the cell phone as a hotspot. I asked her how long the hotspot was missing and she said about 3 months. She was not sure if her daughter hid it or the dog ran off and buried it in the backyard.

The following week when the sales report came out, she fell short of her weekly goals.  I reminded her about the story she told me about the missing hotspot. I asked her if she is willing to tolerate substandard results at home, she will also accept substandard results at work and she will never succeed if she continued to believe she doesn’t deserve anything better than what she is getting. [Read more…]

Whom Do You Admire?

I remember growing up and wanting to be a doctor. My grandfather was a doctor and was allowed to smoke Dutch Masters President cigar’s in the house after dinner. I thought that was pretty cool. I’m sure there were other reasons I aspired to be like him, but cannot recall them today.

Recently I asked a new client who they admire and they were caught off guard. They replied with, “Well, I guess my father.” I asked, “How often do you see your father?” “About two to three times a year, I guess.” they answered. “What do you admire about your father?” I asked. Silence. He couldn’t think of anything. [Read more…]

Define Yourself

During a political season, each candidate defines himself or her­self before their opponent does it for them. As the campaigns heat up and issues are tossed around in the media and discussed with friends and neighbors, you can base your beliefs on what you believe to be true, based on your evaluation of each candidate.

The effort to “define yourself ” is not limited to just political fig­ures. You do it for yourself as a salesperson who constantly opens yourself up for acceptance and rejection in the role you play. You also take the risk of letting others define you, causing you to live according to their definition of you instead of your own. But by defining yourself, when you are rejected by prospects, criticized by others and judged by strangers, you will know their judgments to be untrue because you have decisively defined yourself. who-am-i
When you define yourself, you are consciously deciding what your goals and values are now and in the future. To help stay on track when you are tempted to accept and believe criticism, these goals and values determine your daily behaviors and priorities. Here are three questions to ask yourself about who you are and want to be. [Read more…]

Fight and fail; the only option worth taking

Lately it seems I’ve be learning a lot of lessons.  Which is another way of saying; I’ve been attempting new activities and not achieving the preferred outcome.  This is frustrating for me and I imagine the same for others who are constantly doing the same.

I don’t want to learn anymore lessons for a while.  I want a normal day of mediocrity, filled with a calm contentment and no surprises; like working on an assembly line for a few months. [Read more…]

I’m a First Responder to a No Soliciting sign

Last week I made a visit to my neighborhood mobile phone carrier’s retail store and noticed a ‘No Solicitors’ sign in the window.  This gave me pause before entering.  I thought – “I’m a Solicitor, what’s wrong with me.  Why don’t they want me to come in?”

2013-04-18 14.55.44

I peered through the glass like a school boy at a peep show, wondering what is going on inside that I was forbidden to see.  Others inside the store began to look at me and I finally mustered up the guts to pull the door open and walk in.

I stopped as everyone looked at me and said, “I saw the No Solicitors sign.  I’m a salesman.  I sell for a living.  What do you folks do behind the counter?  Are you salespeople?  Can I come in?”  [Read more…]

The One Word to Stop Using

One of the services I offer clients is selecting and hiring superstar salespeople. I work with them on weeding through resumes and asking questions during interviews. During one of the interviews, last week, I asked a candidate to describe a superstar salesperson, and they replied with, “someone that is helping customers solve problems.” Is this how you describe a superstar salesperson? [Read more…]