How top salespeople deal with major change

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How top salespeople deal with major change

“Who moved my cheese”, by Spencer Johnson is a short fable about dealing with change in both work and in life. 

In this quick read, a couple of mice (Scurry and Sniff) and two littlepeople (Hem and Haw) find months worth of cheese in the maze they are living in. Soon after they eat all of the cheese, Scurry and Sniff quickly run off to find more. 

But Hem and Haw, who didn’t even notice that the cheese was slowly disappearing, stick around to see if the cheese will magically reappear. 

Once Haw realizes that no more cheese is coming back, he decides to go searching for more.

Hem decides to wait it out. He thinks that this sudden change is not fair. He feels that he is entitled to the cheese that he originally found.

Throughout Haw’s journey to find more cheese, he learns quite a few lessons about change. He writes each lesson on the maze walls, hoping that Hem will try to come find him and will see the notes. 

Here is what Haw learned on his way to finally finding more cheese:

  • Change Happens - They Keep Moving The Cheese 

  • Anticipate Change - Get Ready For The Cheese To Move 

  • Monitor Change - Smell The Cheese Often So You Know When It Is Getting Old 

  • Adapt To Change Quickly - The Quicker You Let Go Of Old Cheese, The Sooner You Can Enjoy New Cheese 

  • Change - Move With The Cheese 

  • Enjoy Change! Savor The Adventure And Enjoy The Taste Of New Cheese!

One thing that is certain in life and in business is change. 

 
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In business, your customers will change how they buy. Your customers will change how they communicate. Your customers will completely change what they need. 

In life, your bills are going to get more expensive. Your favorite restaurant is going to close. Your children are going to move out of the house (this might be a good thing depending on your scenario!). 

Just remember that change is coming your way, so get used to it. 

Be on the lookout for change. 

Always be searching for new ways to adapt to the changes. 

If you stay ahead of the curve, you can help steer the change to work to your advantage.  

In the end, just remember to enjoy change. Savor the adventure and enjoy the taste of new cheese!


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Brad Telker
Vice President of Commercial Sales at cfm Distributors, Inc.

Brad joined the cfm team in 2006, and now as the Vice President of Commercial Sales, he focuses on business development, as well as helping contractors and engineers find creative and unique solutions to any size HVAC project. When he’s not at work, Brad enjoys reading, running and spending time with his family.




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Are you telling a good enough story about your business?

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Are you telling a good enough story about your business?

If you don't have a steady flow of leads, you won’t have any deals to close. 

So even if you are the best sales professional on the planet, without leads, you’re toast. 

How do you get more leads? Leads that are good? Leads that have a good chance of closing?

Great question….hopefully this short review of Seth Godin’s book will help. 

Much of Godin’s book “All Marketers are Liars Tell Stories” has a strong focus on a B2C model. However, even in the B2B model, your customers are STILL consumers. They consume your message, they consume your services, they consume the experience of buying (or not buying) your product or service. 

First, a few of my favorite quotes from the book:

  • “Successful marketers are just the providers of stories that consumers choose to believe.”

  • “We believe what we want to believe, and once we believe something, it becomes a self-fulfilling truth. If you think that more expensive wine is better, then it is. If you think your new boss is going to be more effective, then she will be.”

  • “The facts are irrelevant. In the short run, it doesn’t matter one bit whether something is actually better or faster or more efficient. What matters is what the consumer believes.”

Before we get to Godin’s marketing process, we need to cover two definitions: Worldview and Frames.

Worldview:

Worldview refers to the rules, values, beliefs and biases that a consumer brings to a situation. If Jason had a terrible experience the last time he bought a car from a used-car salesman, his worldview when he visits a dealership four years later is different than that of someone who is buying her third car in four years from the same place.

Frames: 

Frames are elements of a story painted to leverage the worldview a consumer already has. Krispy Kreme did it with the phrase Hot Donuts. Hot means fresh and sensual and decadent. Pile that onto the way some of us feel about donuts and they had tapped into an existing worldview (donuts = sensual = hot = love). It wouldn’t work on everyone, but until people changed their worldview (donuts = carbs = get fat), they did great. 

 
 Photo credit: The War on Mind and Body

Photo credit: The War on Mind and Body

 

One more important note from Godin before moving on:

Don’t try to change someone’s worldview is the strategy smart marketers follow. Don’t try to use facts to prove your case and to insist that people change their biases. You don’t have enough time and you don’t have enough money. Instead, identify a population with a certain worldview, frame your story in terms of that worldview and you win.”

Finally, here is Godin's 5 step process to analyze before you run your next marketing campaign:

STEP 1: THEIR WORLDVIEW AND FRAMES GOT THERE BEFORE YOU DID 

A consumer’s worldview affects the way he notices things and understands them. If a story is framed in terms of that worldview, he’s more likely to believe it. 

STEP 2: PEOPLE ONLY NOTICE THE NEW AND THEN MAKE A GUESS 

Consumers notice something only when it changes. 

STEP 3: FIRST IMPRESSIONS START THE STORY 

A first impression causes the consumer to make a very quick, permanent judgment about what he was just exposed to. So be very careful to make sure your first impression is a great one. 

STEP 4: GREAT MARKETERS TELL STORIES WE BELIEVE 

The marketer tells a story about what the consumer notices. The story changes the way the consumer experiences the product or service and he tells himself a lie. Consumers make a prediction about what will happen next. Consumers rationalize anything that doesn’t match that prediction. 

Marketing is now so well developed and so embedded in our culture that consumers no longer make decisions based on a rational analysis of facts. Instead they decide based on the stories they’re told.

STEP 5: MARKETERS WITH AUTHENTICITY THRIVE 

The authenticity of the story determines whether it will survive scrutiny long enough for the consumer to tell the story to other people. Sometimes marketing is so powerful it can actually change the worldview of someone who experiences it, but no marketing succeeds if it can’t find an audience that already wants to believe the story being told.

Consumers are all different, but ultimately they all want the same outcome. They want to be promoted, to be popular, to be healthy, wealthy and wise. They want to be pleasantly surprised and honestly flattered.

Finally, from an author that spent 220 pages teaching marketing & advertising fundamentals and attention grabbing techniques, he finishes the book by saying:

“If you’re not growing, the problem is most likely in your product and not your advertising. Have the guts to change it so that it can evolve into what it deserves to be.”

So before you blame your marketing strategy, take a HARD look at YOUR product or service.

Is it SO good that it’s worth sharing?


***Key Photo credit - Key Photo - itsyourturnblog.com


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Brad Telker
Vice President of Commercial Sales at cfm Distributors, Inc.

Brad joined the cfm team in 2006, and now as the Vice President of Commercial Sales, he focuses on business development, as well as helping contractors and engineers find creative and unique solutions to any size HVAC project. When he’s not at work, Brad enjoys reading, running and spending time with his family.


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How to Avoid Idea Fatigue with a Fresh Start (An email I shared with my team last week)

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How to Avoid Idea Fatigue with a Fresh Start (An email I shared with my team last week)

If you have high aspirations as a sales professional, I bet I know something that is slowing you down.

Idea fatigue.

What is idea fatigue? It is adding more on your to-do list than your brain has the capacity to work on.

Examples:

-Creating a list of prospects to call on (when you already have a long list).
-Making a list of new products or services to sell.
-Adding contacts to call on someday, but not right now because you're too busy.
-Jotting notes down about a new sales strategy.
-Making notes about a marketing blog to write.
-Scribbling notes about future customer events to plan.

These lists can be exhausting.

Here is an email I sent to my team last Monday at 6:38AM that, I hope, helped relieve some idea fatigue. Hopefully it helps you too.

PS: I think I needed it more than anyone else.


From: Brad Telker
Sent: Monday, November 5, 2018 6:38 AM
To: Commercial Team
Subject: I give you permission

It’s time for spring cleaning in the fall.

Do you have anything on your “to do list” that is 45+ days old?

Delete it. Get it out of site. Move it to “old mail”. Move it to “done” in Evernote.

If you truly think it can’t be deleted, then delegate it or put it on your calendar as a time block this week to get it done.

We all have so many things on our to do list that never get done, and it clogs up space in our heads. Each “to-do” task wastes a microsecond every time you read it, and then you feel bad that you haven’t done anything. Then you don’t take action because you don’t know where to start.

If you’re extra brave, move the expiration date to 30 days out.

I GIVE YOU PERMISSION. TIME FOR A CLEAN SLATE!

Have a Productive week! 💪🏻

-Brad


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Brad Telker
Vice President of Commercial Sales at cfm Distributors, Inc.

Brad joined the cfm team in 2006, and now as the Vice President of Commercial Sales, he focuses on business development, as well as helping contractors and engineers find creative and unique solutions to any size HVAC project. When he’s not at work, Brad enjoys reading, running and spending time with his family.


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How to sell anything to anyone

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How to sell anything to anyone

Robert Herjavec, who you might know from NBC's hit show "Shark Tank", recently posted his 5 tips for selling anything to anyone.

Here they are, with my 2 cents about each tip.

1- The first thing you’re selling is yourself

It’s easy to spend all your time worrying about your product's features or your company's competitive advantages. But if YOU aren’t sold on yourself, then neither will your customer. You have to BELIEVE in yourself. You have to know that you are great; that you can figure out anything that you put your mind to.

So focus on yourself first. Are you confident in yourself? Are you confident that you are great at sales?

If not, work on your mindset before you worry about anything else.

2- Listen more than you talk

Everyone likes to talk about themselves; but guess what...? Your customer doesn’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. (Really well said by Theodore Roosevelt don't you think?)

So start asking questions. Lots of them. Once you think you’ve asked enough questions, ask some more. 

You will know when you’ve asked enough questions because your customer will eventually get tired of talking about themselves and their company, and they will eventually start asking questions about you. And now that you know all about their company and their issues, you can steer the conversation to the solutions you have for their biggest challenges. 

 
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3- Know who to sell to

This is easier said than done. But you have to make sure you’re talking to the right person or group of people in the company you are selling to. In his book “How to Sell to Anyone”, Stu Heinecke talks about finding the CEO of the decision maker for the product you are selling. Everyone thinks that they need to be talking to the CEO of the company, which in some cases is the right move, but if you’re selling coffee and styrofoam cups to a $5 billion company, you don’t need to be talking to the C suite. 

Calling one step higher than you think is a great idea, because then you can get a referral down. Just don’t go too high or you will waste everyone’s time.

4- Understand what motivates the other side

If you don’t understand what motivates your customer, you probably won’t be getting any purchase orders. Hopefully you did a good job in step #2 and asked your customer lots of questions to get an answer to this question. 

5- Keep it simple

It can be really easy as a sales team to over-complicate things. For example, you might feel the need to have a sales process that is too detailed, IE: A) go on as many sales calls as possible, B) Try to close 5 new customer for each of our 3 categories every quarter C) during each sales call focus on 3 things that we are good at and find out D) 2 problems they are having E) follow up the next day and then F) follow up again 4 days later, then G) use the 6 step follow up process until you get direction from your customer- and H) …. I)….. 

If you can simplify your sales process and your process of how you take care of your customers, you will win. 

What’s your favorite tip from Robert? Which one will you implement today?


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Brad Telker
Vice President of Commercial Sales at cfm Distributors, Inc.

Brad joined the cfm team in 2006, and now as the Vice President of Commercial Sales, he focuses on business development, as well as helping contractors and engineers find creative and unique solutions to any size HVAC project. When he’s not at work, Brad enjoys photography, running and spending time with his family.


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How to Accelerate your Achievement Through the End of the Year - Part II

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How to Accelerate your Achievement Through the End of the Year - Part II

If you missed part I of this post, go check it out here and then come back for the rest!

Here are Brendon Burchard’s final 4 rules for accelerating your achievement and finishing this year stronger than ever.

Take Back Your Mornings Rule

When you get to the office and start responding to emails right away, your day will be gone before you know it.

Remember, checking your email first thing in the morning is like saying you don’t know what to work on in your business, so you are looking for someone else to tell you what to do.

Commit to being on the offense first thing in morning. Commit to working on your Core 3 right when you get to the office for at LEAST the first 90 minutes (Brendon asks for the entire morning, but since that is not realistic for most people reading this post, 90 minutes is a really good block of time to start with).

If you can take control of your morning to get YOUR most important activies done, you WILL get more results.

Morning Workout Rule

The fall is a marathon to the finish line. And you will need to keep your energy levels up to finish strong. In addition to eating healthy, working out is one of the best ways to do this.

If you don’t get it done first thing in the morning, it’s too easy to find an excuse later in the day.

Working out first thing in the morning also gives you a HUGE mental boost to start your day. You will be more creative and will be able to handle stress much better.

All you need is 20 minutes of intense exercise. That’s it.

One more note on this: research conducted in "High Performance Habits" found that high performers worldwide are 35-40% more likely to workout 5 times per week than under performers.

Just get it done, you’ll thank me later!

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Early Dinner and Sleep Rule

Now that you are getting up early to workout in the morning, you will need to get to bed early to get some sleep.

If you haven’t read “Sleep Revolution”, I’ll fill you in here: In the book they reveal 50 years of indisputable science and research on our brain, health, mood, longevity, marriage, and business- and they found that we NEED 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

If you are up late eating and drinking, your sleep will suffer, and you might find yourself hitting the snooze and skipping your workout.

The Expectation Rule

Have a conversation with everyone in your inner circle, (your significant other and your work team is a good place to start) about the expectations for the rest of the year. What do you plan on accomplishing by the end of the year. What are the major roadblocks.

With your significant other and family, make this a weekly Sunday night conversation. Discuss what the week ahead looks like. Which days are going to be long days? Which night could you have a date night?


If you implemented one new rule, which one would have the greatest impact on your productivity, and ultimately your results?


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Brad Telker
Vice President of Commercial Sales at cfm Distributors, Inc.

Brad joined the cfm team in 2006, and now as the Vice President of Commercial Sales, he focuses on business development, as well as helping contractors and engineers find creative and unique solutions to any size HVAC project. When he’s not at work, Brad enjoys photography, running and spending time with his family.


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