Category Archives: Education

May I have my algorithm, now, please?

May I have my algorithm, please? Remember when dating sites first came out? I don’t know if they still do this, but they used to promote this thing they “did”.

Finding your perfect mate…mathematically! 

Here’s how it works. You enter answers to a survey. Do you smoke? What is your age? What was your GPA during college? What is your profession? Are you an outdoors person? Do you like to drink pickle juice in the middle of the night, watching TV in your swimsuit?

You know, the usual.

And then, they would run all of this data using an algorithm against all other data – and POW! Your perfect match! We did the math and here he is!

It was always a little hard for me to buy

I found myself deeply suspicious that anyone’s algorithm could take all of this “perfectly” correlated data and find me the right guy.

Unfortunately, this is how most “Sales Training” works

We are trained that if we can capture a bulk of the circumstances; the level of the decision-maker, the industry, the economy, the average length of a sales cycle, the ferocity of the competition, and the number of pixels on our marketing pieces (as a sample set) – and we can put this all into a formula and POW! – we will have the right approach to CLOSE THE DEAL!

To that I say ‘hooey’

Each sales transaction, every one, is a complex and delicate social and psychological transaction. Whether you’re selling your three-year-old on eating his peas, or selling an airplane contract to Boeing. Procurement departments are put in place to keep this complexity out – but that just adds one more element to the mix.

How to use sales training

Here’s what I’ve found to be VERY useful. When I hear something that makes sense, I give it a try. See if it works FOR ME. If it does, I keep it. If it doesn’t, I tweak it or toss it. I don’t spend a lot of time trying to figure out what is wrong with me that it does not work.

When I hear something that makes me sick to my stomach, I ask WHY I am being trained that way. There “might” be a good reason. If there isn’t, I scrap it!

When I have worked for a company who insists on a certain way, I found my self-expression in it – or moved on.

There is NO exact formula or mathematical algorithm to sales. It is a constant dance and an unending opportunity for refinement and education. It challenges and fascinates me. And I love it. I have found my voice in it.

I wish the same for you and am willing to help in any way I can (and willing to learn EVEN more than I now know!)

So, let’s keep this community going! It is a beautiful art we pursue! 

Love ’em UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

Everybody skims…

This post is designed for YOU to get your message across to the customers that matter.

A recent a-ha moment! 
I recently got advice from the SPECTACULAR Erika Napoletano (of www.redheadwriting.com fame – or infamy – you choose).

Erika gave me the AWESOME offer of submitting a guest post to her blog. So I submitted one. And she generously front-stabbed me (Front-Stabbing: the generosity you offer when you tell people how it REALLY is – to their face. Antonym: back-stabbing..you get the picture).

Her advice about the article I had submitted? Her words…”… try adding some subheadings that make it easy for the reader to skim (we ALL skim!)”

Then I realized…

I may not be a great author, but I DO THIS IN SALES!
It occurred to me. I am CRYSTAL CLEAR that people SKIM my messages … in email, letters, and voice mail.

That’s why I get such a high level of response in my sales messages. I give it to ’em the way they want it.

I use BOLDED text for each new point. I use bullet points to make my points. It works!

The best part of the story…
In fact! I had a very interesting challenge a few years back. My “prospect” (for lack of a better term) was WILDLY busy. Beyond busy.

So, every email I sent her was the whole message in the subject line without scrolling. With back-up support in the body – if she could get to it. 20 words MAX.

She LOVED it. She told me that I was the ONLY person who “got” the way she wanted to be communicated with! She always got right back to me – a salesperson’s dream.

Still no guest post
Nearly every day, I revisit the guest post I am to send to Erika. Thank goodness, she is not counting on me for content!

But a great realization!
Please, please, please…when you are sending sales emails, think of the sheer amount of emails that everyone has to read. Put your requests first! Put your backup information in clear, concise terms. GET TO THE POINT!  Remember that the reader is probably emailing from her phone.

This requires work, you will have to think about what is IMPORTANT to THEM. Do NOT expect them to read every line. Boil it down to the juice.

You will ROCK over those TEDIOUS emails your competition is sending.

They will love you. They will read you. They will get back to you. They will buy from you.

And you will WIN!

Love your peeps UP!

And remember, EVERYBODY SKIMS! 

The Irreverent Sales Girl

The BUYER makes the biggest difference of all…

A true story that involves a Real Estate Agent
I had dinner with a very good friend of mine on Saturday. She is a ROCK STAR real estate agent. She works her fanny off for her clients and she KNOWS the market where I live. She knows simply everything about everything in our neighborhood. She is a great connector. She is the REAL DEAL. She IS an Irreverent Sales Girl (meaning she says it straight and she produces results).

Here’s the story she told. My good friend has a problem, one that most real estate agents face. She was talking about the inherent disloyalty of representing a buyer in the marketplace. NOW, no matter what you think of the value of real estate agents or the commissions they make or any of the rest of it, I want you to put that aside for one minute. It will be worth it.

Buyers are often disloyal. They will work with an agent to get educated, have that agent schlep them all over town looking at the houses that fit their desires, and then they go find a property they love, act on it, and cut the agent out of the deal. It’s not wrong. It is how the system is designed.

(MY advice: If you are so smart that you can ‘go it on your own’, then ‘go it on your own’ the whole way through.)

But, here’s the inspiring part
She went on to tell a story that I loved. She told me of a client who she had been working hard for. He was in the market. He tripped across a home he loved. It was For Sale By Owner. He was ready to buy.

Know what he did?

He said, up-front… “I don’t make a move without my agent. I want HER to manage the deal..from inspections, to attorneys, to reviewing the deal.”

He was no dummy. He has his own business. Something HE knows everything about. And he REALIZED that she does, too. She actually KNOWS something about the pitfalls of buying, the places he could get screwed up, the team of professionals required to make the deal go down, so that it benefits HIM.

He honored her professionalism and valued her expertise. She got paid. He got what he wanted.

So, what’s the point?
Here’s the point. By now, you probably know that my MISSION IN LIFE is to transform the world of selling. For everyone!

When you think about it…People LOVE to buy things they want or need, and they especially love to buy from people they LIKE!

So, where did it all go wrong? Where did sales get such a bad rap?

Well, I think we all know where…from crummy snake oil salespeople who took advantage of trusting buyers.

BUT, times they have a-changed.

From Buyer-Beware to Buyer-Be-Great
I am going to say something radical now.

How YOU are, as a buyer, makes a difference.

If you honor the expertise, the wisdom, and the education you receive from a GREAT salesperson, you will make the world better for yourself, and for everyone else.

Yes, go out and get the best deal for yourself. Yes, work with real pros. Yes, say NO to salespeople who are not getting you what you want.

BUT, be a person who is WILLING to be great in the sales process. Send thank you’s to those who have put their time in – even if you aren’t going to use them. LISTEN for just a minute to what someone has to say. Put aside the need to “protect” yourself (you are bigger than that, anyway.)

Value the work that people do on your behalf. If you are willing to wear the big-boy pants and hold people accountable for doing their work well, AND you are willing to take FULL responsibility for your choices, then we actually HAVE A SHOT at making sales great. By all means, cut OUT the salespeople who are doing it badly, and cut them out FAST. Learn to do business with style and courtesy. As a buyer.

The buyer, more than anyone else, can transform the world of sales into a beautiful and celebrated profession. One where we can ALL get exactly what we want. Please start today. That person SELLING you something may actually have your best interests in mind. Take the time to find out.

Love buying UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

Boy, do I have a surprise for you!

We have got some COOL stuff about to happen.

The amazing Robert Terson received delivery of his BRAND NEW book Selling Fearlessly today. I wish I could have seen his face when he opened the box…smelled the fresh new pages…saw the colorful covers…the completion of many, many hours of loving work.

Here is what I LOVE about this book. It is written by one of the most generous men I know. Someone whose writing chops are a match for his selling chops. Someone who ACTUALLY sold his whole career. (Go to http://www.sellingfearlessly.com/mound-road/ and read The Mound Road story he has avaialable on the site – it will draw you in!)

Bob doesn’t tell you how to sell, he SHOWS you how to sell.

So, the cool thing that is happening is that Robert is going to do a VaVaVaVoom (Vicarious, Virtual, Voyeuristic) Interview with me, The Irreverent Sales Girl, later this month. The interview will be fun, inspiring, will share some highlights and give you at LEAST one thing that will make a difference in your success.

It is my privilege to help this amazing man introduce his masterpiece to the world. Stay tuned for more information!

Love your stories UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

I am so spoiled right now!

I have just spent the most amazing weekend with 20 incredible people in the Smoky Mountains – participating in an amazing program called Elevations.

I have been spoiled rotten. Every detail was attended to. From food to lodging to personal gifts that made ME feel KNOWN and SPECIAL.

The whole program has been fantastic. Intelligent exercises to think newly about my goals and aspirations. .Plenty of time to practice living outside of my comfort zone – and watch other people do the same. Expanding my horizons and taking everything I’m doing to the next level.

Most of my life is about taking care of my clients or getting people things they need from me to become a client. I am ON CALL for others. I loved having something for ME. I loved being taken care of and challenged and reflecting and taking personal risks.

It reminds me…if I am up to big stuff and I want to accomplish things I have never accomplished…I MUST continue to learn and practice and STEP AWAY from the laptop. Time for me. Time to learn new things (always room for that).

Look for pictures, on their way. We had a blast!

How will YOU feed your ambitions this year?

Love your success UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

Sales is a Science? REALLY?

I was in a sales training the other day. The man in front (who hasn’t ever actually sold anything…He’s been “in” sales – sales management, sales operations, stuff like that) was laying out the Art and SCIENCE of Selling.

Really?

This is where salespeople get hurt! Damaged! When they start to believe what the ‘experts’ say about how to do sales.

I AM SALES. I do it every day. Face to face. Phone to phone. Front lines.

I will tell you that there is NO SCIENCE to sales. If you’re talking about the “models” and “experimentation” and “observation” part of science..Sure, I’ll give you that.

BUT calling something science IMPLIES that you can do something re-producible, every time. As in…every time I put this many Hydrogen atoms in with this many Oxygen atoms, I will get water. Every time.

We could NOT have landed Curiosity on Mars without heavy-duty science. Hell, we couldn’t plug in our lamps and read by the light reliably without science. Or keep our food cold in the refrigerator.

THERE IS NO SUCH formula with sales.

Which is why salespeople get messed up. They hear things like “the science of sales” and they follow some formula that someone else MADE UP! (Still haven’t seen the math that works every time). But it doesn’t work for them, so they think they are just not doing it right. And they get beat down… AND they are trained to beat their customer into submission.

UGH!

NO!

Someone needs to tell these fabulous salespeople that they have been snowed. Today, I am your someone.

Sales is an art. A beautiful and precious art. Something to master. It requires all of you and every bit of personal and professional growth that you can imagine.

Someone who does sales well is a GIFT; to their company, their family, their customers and themselves. (Read this wonderful story: http://www.sellingfearlessly.com/mound-road/)

People LOVE to buy things that they want and need from other people.

Where is the breakdown then?

When we treat something so MAGICAL as sales as a “science”, we diminish the human spirit to numbers and formulas.

People are NOT numbers and formulas and they do not appreciate being treated that way.

I treat YOU as someone I want to discover. I seek to understand what you truly desire and do everything in my power to fulfill that desire. And to tell you when I cannot – but still collaborate to get you what you really do want. THAT is why I ROCK in sales!

I sleep in on days you don’t need me…and I work until 3 am on days that you do.

I fulfill on your intention. I get you what you want.

I AM The Irreverent Sales Girl … and SO ARE YOU!

Wanna move a crazy economy forward? Let’s ALL get in the business of getting each other what we want and need! Let’s engage in the ART of it.

I love sales UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

 

How do you engage someone in ways they never imagined?

I was attending a conference session headed up by a very interesting organization called Care2 (Make a Difference) at www.care2.com. I do NOT condone every one of their messages, but they solidified something for me.

Care2 postulates that if you have a business that satisfies 6 Basic Human Needs, you have got a winner!

I was thrilled. First, I already work to incorporate all of them – AND it gave me ideas for getting even better. I am thinking about painting these 6 key words on my office wall to remind me (and all those who work with me) to fulfill these needs in every interaction. Ready? Here they are:

1) Significance: Day-In-and-Day-Out, I make sure that EVERY person who interacts with me is acknowledged publicly. Think I can’t keep it up? TRY ME!

2) Connection: People have a deep desire to feel connected – to a person, a brand, a company, a vision. I work HARD to provide pathways to this. I will never stop!

3) Contribution: People are DYING to make a difference. I am so grateful that YOU make a difference with me. It is my goal to demonstrate publicly the difference you make and the contribution you are to my life, to others’ lives, and to all of your communities.

4) Certainty: People want to know what to expect when they listen to my messages.I believe they expect Dignity, Irreverence, Inspiration, and something that reminds them of who they are. I work very hard on this quality. The Irreverent Sales Girl does not swear and rarely disparages – UNLESS you are so totally off base that disparging you is the only avenue I can see (*grin*).

5) Variety: The yin to the yang of Certainty. (Or is it the other way around?) In any case, people want to be Surprised and Delighted. They like a twist. They want something a little unexpected. This is why I stay FAR away from “warmed over porridge” otherwise known as sappy platitudes. There is plenty of that everywhere else.

6) Growth: People want an opportunity to grow. Everything I offer is designed for exactly that. So that I can grow and hopefully offer something that inspires you to grow, too! If we do not all grow together, I’ll likely get left behind! No GOOD!

Feel free to steal these tenets if you’d like. I stole them after all! I think they are amazing!

Let’s go forth and give people what they want!

Love your work UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

 

If you want to be bold…

Remember who you REALLY are…what you came here to accomplish!

Please think about your life this way. What do you want to leave behind?

It may seem morbid, but it’s not!

Go forth as if you could not possibly lose!

Take risks!

Get what you get … and then go from there.

Stop LIMITING YOURSELF. YOU ARE HERE FOR SOMETHING AMAZING!

I’m just sayin’

Love,

The Irreverent Sales Girl

So, I want to hear from you…..

What’s the most important thing you want to accomplish this Summer? Between now and Labor Day?

Tomorrow, the Debut Irreverent Sales Girl’s Master Plan for Wild Success begins and the players will be creating THEIR Summer – Twelve weeks of NEW POWER and accomplishment in ANY area.

This session is sold out, but don’t hesitate to go put yourself on the waiting list for the next one – dates/times still TBD! Find out more at www.irreverentsalesgirl.com. We’ll work with YOUR schedule.

So, what do YOU want to accomplish this Summer? I’m dying to know!

Love the HEAT up!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

Announcing the Debut……

Bear with me while I share a little story…..Thank you!

Many of you know that the Magnificent Anne Marie Schlekeway was my coach before she moved on from this world with the help of Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

Anne Marie was AMAZING, vivacious, talented, magnetic! AND she developed a brilliant 12-week coaching program called The Master Plan.

Before she passed away, she helped ME write The Irreverent Sales Girl’s Master Plan for Wild Success. It is brilliant!

But, I know one thing about me. I am not a coach and I don’t want to be one. I don’t even want to play one on TV.

So, after a long time searching, I have finally found the MOST AMAZING COACH to deliver the program in her absence. He is the Fabulous James Baird who has coached hundreds of people to realize their dreams. Anne Marie’s mother described him as “EXCITING” – and he is!

The Irreverent Sales Girl’s Master Plan for Wild Success is a heart-filled, generous, guaranteed results program to bring people the things they REALLY desire.

We are starting this 12 session program on May 29th. We will only offer it to ten people to start – because we care that the results are delivered.

Right now, there are six people registered for the Debut Plan that we are offering at a deep discount.

If you are one of the deep discount participants, I want you to agree to:

1) Get amazing results
2) Give a video, audio, and/or written testimonial about your results
3) Refer two people to The Irreverent Sales Girl’s Master Plan for Wild Success
4) Participate in assessments every week and one survey at the end.

This is a VaVaVaVoom offer that will ROCK your planet. If you want to check out the introduction and promises and schedule, go to: www.irreverentsalesgirl.com.

I have a feeling we’ll go to waitlist by Thursday, so if you’re interested, don’t hesitate.

I can’t WAIT to love you up!

The Irreverent Sales Girl