Speaker 2:0:10hello and welcome. You are listening to an episode of the sales show to stream or download a host of further free episodes that will power your sale success. Please visit sales chat show.com. We really hope that you enjoy and benefit from this episode.
Speaker 3:0:35so hello folks and welcome to yet another episode of the sales chat show sales chat show.com deriving your sales success. I have with me my esteemed colleagues, Mr Phil, Jess and Mr Graham Jones in the sales chat show studio, but we are joined by our special guest star missed anthony stairs, otherwise known as the telephone assassin. Um, we are exploring the topic of our successful salespeople are pushy or not. So the stereotypical image of salespeople in many countries is a bit of a negative one. They're pushy, slimy, manipulative, negative, and he spends a lot of time working with sales creek, blew up, working over work over the telephone.
Speaker 3:1:29Graham's being naughty and lazier. You spent a lot of time working with him. I love the telephone. A domain which is often labeled with that kind of stereotypical, stereotypical. And so we thought we'd we would explore your thoughts on or successful people, sales people push pushy or not. However I need to point out Antony may not be qualified to ladies and gentleman because he told us that he has failed a psychometric test, the results of which showed according to the person who did the test that he couldn't close sales. We'll invite to get there. Then I think we need to know about grand is attempting to feel really welcome them as accusing him of being manipulative. Might do an impromptu in psychometric test on how would you describe what you do by the way, for Alex.
Speaker 4:2:21so I have people with telephone engagement. I usually get put in the sales training category, although I always start an adamant in the fact that I'm more of a customer service trainer than a sales trainer. And the reason that I say that is I don't try and teach people how to sell, but simply show them how to help their customers to buy our. Okay.
Speaker 3:2:40Vat, I believe is your response to
Speaker 4:2:44psychometric question. Isn't that? That's. Tell. Tell us the story. So my last proper job, in inverted commas, when I was employed, I had to do a psychometric test and I remember on the second interview going in and the lady sitting there with piece of paper saying, okay, thanks for coming back, we have the results to your psychometric test here. Um, and interestingly enough here it says you can't close to which I kind of smiled, didn't shrug my shoulders went, oh, okay. That's interesting. When she said, I don't know if you heard me, the psychometric test that you did in your last interview has come back and it says here that you can't actually close a sale. I just went, wow, that is interesting. Where there was a pause and she kind of looked at me as if to say you better say something better than that's interesting.
Speaker 4:3:35So I asked her if she'd sit, if she'd read my cv, which it was, sat in front of her and she said yes. And then I asked her if she'd read my cv and she looked at me like my older sister does, as if to go this better be going somewhere. And she said, she said, yes, of course I have. I said, so hopefully you've noticed that I broke the sales records in my last job. And she said, well, yes, actually, it's the only reason you got invited back. So I went, oh, okay. Um, well, in answer to your response about the psychometric tests is I think it's probably right. I, I'm, I'm actually not a very good closer. In fact, I'm rubbish at selling. I'm just really good at helping customers to buy. And that's kind of the response. I got a little chuckle about three to five seconds of that she's been on her chair, tore up this piece of paper and went that was a waste of time. You start on a Monday. And the reason that I share that with people is you don't have to be an aggressive salesperson to make sense.
Speaker 3:4:32So. So, um, you've mentioned previously that you weren't really kind of two sort of groups of people, you know, aggressive sliming bullshit. We're not the words that I chose.
Speaker 4:4:53Typically when they're on the phone usually fall into one of two categories. You have the more aggressive salespeople. But throw a lot of mud at the wall knowing that some will stick. What I ended up doing with them is just teaching them good manners and a bit of patience and showing them that yes, if you throw enough mud at the wall it will stick. But I do sniper sales, not scatter gun. So it's a lot of effort to throw mud at the wall and if only a couple of bits stick, you could probably find a much more productive way of getting those same sales. So those people I just try and teach them to slow down a bit and understand the buying journey that their clients are going on so that they can talk them through that buying process. So by the time they get to the close, they're ready to make a decision. You've built rapport, you've built credibility, you built urgency.
Speaker 3:5:42Do you think they come across as pushy because they've been targeted, for example, quite commonly, isn't it? They've been targeted with a certain number of calls to make and they want to and they want to get, you know, sometimes long as you do the calls, if you do enough calls, you get enough is the kind of the old
Speaker 4:5:58adage, isn't it? You know? Yeah. And that is absolutely. And I always say to them, it's not their fault, it's their manager's fault. Um, and usually it's because I believe they're being given old profession sales tactics about numbers, games. Um, and quite often when I ask people what they measure around telephone activity, they usually measure the number of dials or the number of calls, the number of meetings you book or the number of quotes that you send out and the number of deals that you close, which are all sensible things to measure in a business. The problem that I have is people try to apply a logic that if you make 50 calls yesterday and you got to say you've got the two quotes from it, then that means if you made 100 calls today, you would get four quotes. Well, it doesn't work like that.
Speaker 4:6:39They have no correlation to each other, so what I try and get people to do is create a point system that represents each step within their sales cycle so that you can understand the value in the conversation and you can see that they've progressed through the sales cycle. The nice thing about having these points is that you can, um, tell people where you're going to take the neck so that there's no surprises. It also means that the salesperson in question knows where they're at in the sales cycle and that they don't skip to the close too soon and get them know because a lot of what old fashioned sales tactics teach you. Is that each. No is one step closer to your next yes, and in my mind that is absolute rubbish to nose on the trot in my mind means you're either fighting the wrong people or you're taking the wrong approach. Very similar. It's don't get me wrong. Sales is a numbers game, but it's not about collecting no's. It's about capitalizing on the conversations. People are ready to have a. okay.
Speaker 5:7:34That's an interesting, an interesting approach. Mr. Jessen, interesting topic. We're talking about today, um, I think successful salespeople are pushing once they fail to recognize the lifetime value of the customer and that's probably their mistake and I don't think the help that by the industry that we work in or to be more precise, the history of the industry that we're in 50, 60 years ago was publishing nonsense books. The 57 ways to develop a killer instinct. I think it would probably fall into the wrong methodology on day one. Uh, fortunately, three sessions like this and others, I think we're trying to right that wrong. So I think you're absolutely right. There's no place really in today's world for that over the top pushy responds. If ongoing business is important to the life blood of the company. It's an interesting thing and you'll have a great analogy. I'm pizza venues. You mentioned the before we, before we went on that.
Speaker 4:8:50Yes. So this is an analogy that I tend to give when you're working around lead generation and you're trying to find new opportunities or what most people in the industry would call cold calling. Not a huge fan of that phrase, but the analogy I always give is the outbound phone calls, particularly Jenni phone calls should feel like you're dropping off a pizza menu. Uh, so what I mean by that is typically we all get takeaway menus, Perth, through our letter box on a weekly basis. But when I asked the question of how many people have actually had the person dropping off the menu physically knock on the door, can I take your order? They tend to laugh a little bit and think, well, that's incredibly rude. You would just slam the door in their face. And quite often the more aggressive salespeople out there I have to point out, but that's how you come across on the phone.
Speaker 4:9:35When you do this premature elaboration and you just blast a pitch down on the phone to anybody who who answers you sell off alarm bells that say it's a sales cook. So really what you want to be doing is dropping off your pizza menu in a way of having a conversation with them that says, look, this is what we do, but I'm assuming this isn't something you're looking to buy right now. Is that correct? Basically put the most common objection on the table, which is generally we're not looking to buy this right now. If you put that on the table, you can get past it. And once they say, yes, you're right, we aren't looking to buy this. Now you say, okay, but is it something that you might buy in the future or might look to buy in the future to which you usually get if you've done any bit of research? Uh, but actually yes, we might. Our contract comes up for renewal at this point or our strategy may change at this point. Um, so that's, that's the kind of way prevention photo to the crm system.
Speaker 4:10:29The other example that I would tend to give his, I've done quite a lot of stuff with insurance companies and to be honest with you, when they speak to a potential new customer, there's one crucial bits of information that they really want and that's when is your renewal date and the reason that they want that is because if you just renewed your insurance, you've got at least 10 months before you were even going to entertain the conversation about insurance. It's not that interesting. Okay. Um, so it's all about understanding their desire timeframes and when they're going to have an appetite for your, for your service or your product, which was some of us, it might be project project related. For others, it might just be ongoing development and you've got to fit in with a development program that they're already going on with the business year presumably.
Speaker 4:11:09Yeah, exactly. I've got, I've got leads at the moment that basically they still want to do trading, but they've used up all their budget. They've asked me to wait until the budget resets, so I need to acknowledge that. And what I could either do is show desperation and try and close them sooner and offer to spread the payments and not take money yet, but that's not how I do business or I can patiently wait until I know they've got the funds available. But what I do do is when you're pipe lining people, um, so you've qualified them for a potential future need is you do need multiple touch points, even doesn't have to be a conversation. And what I get people to do is I alluded to it earlier, that the middle part of the conversation is building credibility. You need to build a rapport first, but you then need to build credibility.
Speaker 4:11:49And the way you do that is by sharing success stories people can relate to. So studies and testimonials. So if somebody is in your pipeline for six months before they're ready to buy from you already to talk again, every couple of months, I'd be sending them another case study of another company. I've worked with them to say, look, I've been doing this work with these guys at recently. Look what they saying about us, assuming we're still not going to speak until Christmas time and if anything's changed, please come back to me and it just allows you to keep building on the credibility. It gives you multiple touch points, keeps them kind of warm until they're ready to have that conversation. I was going to say that sort of sounds very well, but it just strikes me you're not pushing enough and that's why you can't call it a sale.
Speaker 4:12:33But if we think about that, the very reason that you failed your test was because they were asking the wrong question. So they're asking the question about, you know, basically do your close sales and you don't know because you've just given those two alternatives. Yeah, you could try and close the sale. They're not going to buy from you because they haven't got the budget or you could carry on developing the relationship and just keeping front of mind until it's the point where you can get them to consider something. And so you're the kind of person who's going to take the second route, and on the first route, the problem is that many businesses constantly try and take the first route because they're asking another wrong question. They're asking, you know, how many calls do we need to make to get, you know, your lack of correlation. They're asking, you know, how many salespeople do we need on a patch to achieve this? How many they're doing a numbers game that they're asking the wrong questions about the wrong numbers and they're inevitably getting the wrong answers. So we've got another program about don't close the sale. Yeah, there is no need to close sales. There's plenty of evidence that shows that people who try and close sales actually sold less than people who don't bother.
Speaker 4:13:42So all those businesses that are suggesting you'd be pushy because you've got to get to the close. It's the wrong question. Gosh, flying in the face of conventional sales, risk of goodness. I always say to people, well, I don't do database marketing. I do wish lists marketing. So there are certain campaigns out there where you're doing a data cleanse. And you're literally just trying to get straight to the point and you're trying to get your database down and leave it to just some of the good stuff. The reason I got the name and telephone assessing was in the first five, six years of working for myself. I used to make course for people and they always used to try and send me a database, which inevitably they stole from their previous employer or got some underhanded way. I would always turn around to them and say, I don't want this.
Speaker 4:14:28Can you just give me a wishlist of people you want to deal with? That would make the biggest difference because I'd rather have a list of 20 people and try and get you into 10 to 15 of them in the next six months than I would to have a list of 500. And my job is to pitch so many times. And the reason why the throwing loads of mud at the wall and being too aggressive while I think it's dangerous is if you upset the wrong person in need. In this day and age, that's got a massive following online. They're going to slate you online and then your marketing becomes around burying bad stuff that people have written about you and I've worked with clients and big companies who've had to phoenix themselves and restart under a different name because somebody named and shamed them or put something online.
Speaker 4:15:08If there's industries out there where they. I said them slating their competitors in order to try and make this happen, so it's. It's a risky one. I think from a numbers game perspective, but what you're saying is a sites will have targets so that they're told, well, if you want to make this many sales, you've got to make this many calls. That the bit that makes this a numbers game is it's your job is to qualify people into your pipeline so you are only talking to people that might do business with you personally. I think if you note to the pipeline and it's got quality in it, it will convert and close except and email. I don't know how many times do you guys have had inquiries that sounded really good at the time. Then they went off the board and over a year, two years later, you just get an email say, could you still do that workshop?
Speaker 4:15:53And I give them as well. I have had one recently and it was just, I looked and it was over 18 months ago that I last spoke to them. We'd swapped a few messages and I like a few things that they do on social media, so I try and follow some of your advice and state sort of front of mind a little bit, but actually yes, I can try and close it, but my problem with that is I'm forcing a conversation that they don't want to have yet, which generally means I'm not going to get the outcome I want. Is it? What about other folks at the other end of the spectrum? Your the opposite end of the aggression. I think a lot of people listening will be like the last thing in the world I can, you know, I really want to do is pick up the telephone and got that sort of.
Speaker 4:16:31Yeah, because you don't want to be seen as pushy, pushy. You don't want to be seen as being salesy, salesy world, and that is enough without putting horrible connotations to it, but the other extreme is typically the an account manager or a customer service kind of person that would never dream of making outbound phone calls or proactive phone calls and with them all I really try and do, particularly with the account managers, is teach them how to upserve their clients and be more valuable to their business. So in some instances, if you're an account manager that is looking after a client, you've probably delivered some kind of work from them already. So is your responsibility, I believe, to get some feedback at the end of it to make sure that they were happy and if they are happy and they're going to write something nice, then that needs to be a case study that you should personally want to go and share with another company who's just like your customer to say, and this is the beautiful thing that I tend to give a lot of account managers.
Speaker 4:17:29You could even start off your call by saying, please excuse me. I don't normally make these kinds of calls, it's usually our sales reps that will do this, but I look after, let's give an example, hotels for our company and I've got three or four that really wonderful. I'd love to share what they are saying about us and if you think it's worth us having a coffee, I'd love to come and have a proper chat. Um, and that's just kind of how you build your credibility to say that actually I've had people like you and I preframing that cool by saying it's normally one of our sales reps and I get directors to say that same thing sometimes because a lot of directors, I have it with speakers that go, I can't make the call. I will look desperate. Like I haven't got any work, and I made no, you won't. You'll actually make them feel special because they'll go, oh my God, it was actually Simon Hazeldine phoned me. It wasn't one of his minions. Maybe that was the word, not the best example to you.
Speaker 4:18:29But yeah, it's something that I, particularly with speakers,
Speaker 3:18:32the American negotiation guru to camp. He was being interviewed and he said something like, is there sort of a product would be, um, I don't even know if we can help you in the Saturday and because we've not, we've not spoken enough, I'm just really interested in who have you got in your corner helping you with. And then he inserted the solution, which was a really nice, really nice way of just saying, don't even know that can help you, but I'm really just interested to know. Yeah,
Speaker 4:19:01like what's clever about that is always trying to do. There is a, is establish a potential future need for the services. He's trying to locate the incumbent, which then if you're smart you will ship it, be praise and find out what they like about them as opposed to saying how could they improve? Because that's generally where most of us will go in because we want to rub salt in the wounds, but usually ask them what they like about them. Then they will then open up and tell you about it. If you acknowledge and put on the table that they probably do have an external person who's helping them with this, you make it okay for that to be the case and therefore they will be open and honest with you, so sometimes just putting your cards on the table and being prepared to be patient and take the time to learn enough to help them and is probably a much stronger way of trying to push you.
Speaker 4:19:50One comment that you said, something that you need to be pushy once didn't see well sometimes you only need to be pushy was one of the things that I ended up doing more with the account managers is I show them impeccable manners. I'm on the phone and this basically means that you don't enter into conversations people aren't ready to have. Once you have built the rapport and you've established credibility and you understand their timeframes, you then earn the right to be able to make recommendations and guide them and actually you can be quite assertive while being very polite and getting them to do the things that they said they wanted to do at the very beginning. Rather than deviating from it and store league and keeping stuff to themselves prestigious, I'm just going to
Speaker 3:20:41is if I'm a and first of all by thanking underneath his great contribution was hoping our listeners
Speaker 5:20:48have found that a fascinating in tend to success in sales today. What I've taken from it is the. It's not a numbers game. It's a people game. It's not about upselling, it's about serving. It's not about pushing people is pulling them and taking them with us. It's not about putting the arm up the back with some fancy closing technique. It's more about handholding, working together and that dreadful phrase, close the sale. No, it's not about closing the sale. It's more about opening up a lifetime of future opportunities are there for the summer. I'm done. I'm telling you, if people wanted to get hold of you to talk about how you might be able to help them. Did you just like to mention
Speaker 4:21:40best way to get it? If you want to talk to me, the best thing to do is to pick up the telephone. Um, if you're outside of the UK, the number. We'll start with a plus four, four, but I'm about to give you a mobile number that everybody should save into their mobiles ever. Any, uh, any challenge that they've got about being on the telephone. I get told off for doing this and I do it when I'm on stage, but to be honest with you, I call people's bluff because a very small percentage actually bothered to pick up the phone. In fact, I still laugh at the number of people who think an email approach is still the best one for me, but for getting in touch with my telephone number is four zero, seven dash eight, seven, seven, nine, eight, zero, double three. And in case you're wondering, I don't have a gatekeeper and as long as I'm not on stage or on the phone, I'll always take your call and if not I'll always call you back.
Speaker 3:22:27Fantastic. Well, thank you very much. It's been the sales chat show, Phil Justin Graham Jones, and I'm Simon has a very special guest star to the stairs, the telephone assassin. There are lots more episodes including other ones where we dig further into Anthony's a wealth of knowledge and experience. You'll find those all that sales chat show.com. In the meantime, we just like to wish you good luck and good selling. Folks.
Speaker 2:22:57You have been listening to an episode of the sales chat show to stream or download a host of further free episodes that will power your sales success. Please visit sales chat show.com. Thank you very much for listening to this episode and from everyone here at the sales chat show. We'd like to wish you good luck and good selling.