Monday, January 31, 2011

Quote of the Week

"I will pay more for the person who can get along with others than for any other skill." -- John D. Rockefeller

This quote is so relevant, especially to sales. It is absolutely necessary that you get along with people to be successful. Not only will this help you to build trust with clients, but it will also make your work go more smoothly. If you get along with everyone you work with, you can ask for help from people in accounting, shipping, and marketing. If they already like and respect you, they'll be willing to help do anything they can to make your sales succeed.

Friday, January 28, 2011

High Tech and High Touch

Anne Miller always has great stories to accompany her sales lessons, and this article is no different. Her articles always get me thinking - I hope it does the same for you!

In the last few days, two experiences stopped me dead in my tracks, not because they were new, but because they are so rare in business these days.

An Apple a Day...

During Christmas week, I ventured into an Apple store filled with shoppers to buy a MacBook Pro. Dreading a long wait, I was pleasantly surprised when an Apple employee immediately greeted me, took me to a salesperson who then not only efficiently and patiently helped me, but, to my amazement, personally walked me through all the paperwork. I was in and out in about thirty minutes. Painless.
Courtesy, respect, efficiency, service. Wow!

I'll Get Back To You...

I called a prospect this week to initiate a new business discussion, but, unfortunately, caught her in the middle of a meeting. She said she would call back.
To my amazement, again, not only did she call back, but she apologized that she hadn't called sooner. We had a friendly, civilized conversation about the holiday and the snow storm and then moved on to business.

Courtesy, civility, warmth, professionalism. How Refreshing!

Little Things Mean a Lot

There was a time before Blackberry addiction, attention deficit disorder, being on 24/7, attitude, and the information highway when these experiences would not have been out of the norm. Most people were polite. Most store salespeople actually cared and provided real service. Most B2B relationships were courteous and respectful.

I am not suggesting we turn the clock back to a simpler time. These experiences, though, are reminders that, high tech notwithstanding, we can still choose how we treat clients and colleagues. We still need to keep the high touch in business along with the high tech. When we do, clients notice. When we skimp on the high touch, they notice that, too.

Sales and presentation specialist Anne Miller is the author of "Metaphorically Selling" and "Make What You Say Pay!". Check out her site at

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Is Your Sale Really a Good Sale?

I really enjoy sales trainer Mark Hunter's blog - he covers topics that are pertinent to salespeople, and offers advice that is practical and easy to put to use. Today he discusses what makes a good sale.

Each sale you close is not a good sale unless it leads to the next sale.

I'm a firm believer that if you're doing your job as a salesperson, when you make a sale you're also creating a customer for life. Yes, we've all heard this, but here's how I believe the process works best:

When you're meeting with the customer, you're naturally uncovering needs the customer has. Some of these needs are the ones you're leveraging to make your sale. The opportunity is in uncovering not just needs you're going to solve now, but needs you can come back to later and create additional sales. To do this requires you to end the first sale having earned the right, the privilege, opportunity and respect to be able to meet with the person again.

One way you do this is by always leaving the customer with a next step as to what you intend to do for the customer. By creating an on-going process of being in touch with the customer, you will now be in a position to explore more comments the customer has shared with you in previous meetings. It's your ability to then take these comments and ask follow-up questions in subsequent meetings that will then help you create the next sale.

One of the reasons I'm a firm believer in always being in a position to start working on the next sale is simple. It's far more effective to generate additional sales from an existing customer than it is to get a sales from a new customer. In all of the sales profitability studies I've done, the results are almost always the same — the cost of generating sales is at its lowest point 1/3 of the way through the life of the customer relationship.

I won't attempt to go into a full explanation here, but basically the cost of generating sales is naturally high with a new customer and also is high with a well-developed customer. The reason it's high for a well-developed customer is because many times this type of customer is granted additional services or price breaks, etc. because they are so loyal or because the personal relationships run so deep. What this means is a customer is generating its most efficient sale approximately 1/3 of the way through their sales life-cycle. The way you can maximize this is by making sure each sale opens the door to the next sale.

Mark Hunter, "The Sales Hunter", is a sales expert who speaks to thousands each year on how to increase their sales profitability. For more information, to receive a free weekly email sales tip, or to read his Sales Motivation Blog, visit

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Purpose of Business

Sales trainer Tom Reilly has a great way of thinking when it comes to sales. Today he talks about the purpose of business - very interesting!

Adam Smith, father of modern economic theory, believed that the purpose of a business was to make money. Peter Drucker, long considered to be the foremost thinker on management, wrote in his book, The Practice of Management, that the purpose of business was to create customers. How could two profound thinkers differ so much in their view of business? Granted, Drucker did acknowledge profit as a test of a company's viability and an essential condition for a company's continued existence. Frankly, both of these thinkers' definitions leave me hungry.

If profit is the only motive, life is simple but not necessarily better. If I exist only for customers, where is my payoff? I like my definition better: The purpose of a business is to create value.

For whom, you ask? You tell me. Value for the customer? Yes. Value for the owners and shareholders? Yes. Value for the larger community in which the company functions? Yes. Value for employees and other stakeholders? Yes. Implicit in all of these affirmative responses is equity, and equity is a powerful motivator.

If you begin a task with a simple objective, to create something of value, that seems to cover all bases. If it is valuable to the customer and not for you, it is not really something of value. If it is valuable to you, but no one else is willing to pay for it, it probably is not that valuable to you.

Imagine what could happen if you began every project—and making a sales call is a project—with this attitude: "Let's create something of value here today." You and the customer would benefit.

Tom Reilly is the president of Tom Reilly Training. He is an authority on value-added selling, and speaks to thousands of salespeople and managers annually on increasing their value to their company and customers.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Despite Tough Times Salespeople Remain Optimistic

Although times are tough, I try to stay pretty positive on this blog, keeping the focus on new ideas and inspirations you can use to keep your sales going strong. As it turns out, many of you have that same positive outlook that I do. A new survey, compiled at our website,, had surprising results that I think will interest you.

Let us know what you think in the comments!

A poll conducted by shows a sky-high ninety-three percent of salespeople expect an increase in their sales in 2011.

Their optimism is apparently fueled by an increase in lead generation efforts. According to the poll, seventy-one percent of respondents say their companies have increased lead generation activities.

"In the past, many companies went into a bunker mentality during an economic downturn and made the mistake of slashing marketing budgets," says Michael Dalton Johnson, publisher and founder of SalesDog. "Our poll indicates this no longer the case," he added.

Despite the rosy outlook for 2011, seventy-three percent of survey takers said their overall compensation has been negatively affected by the down economy. This may account for the fact that thirty-six percent of respondents are considering an occupation change.

According to those polled sixty-nine percent want their companies to provide more sales training. That comes as no surprise given that sixty-seven percent are dissatisfied with their current compensation.

The poll also revealed that despite the plethora of internet selling options, sixty-nine percent of salespeople make the majority of their sales in person rather than over the phone or online, suggesting that in a business world increasingly ruled by technology, salespeople still are still using old school selling methods.

For complete survey results visit:

Monday, January 24, 2011

Quote of the Week

"The happiness of most people we know is not ruined by great catastrophes or fatal errors, but by the repetition of slowly destructive little things." -- Ernest Dimnet

As it's still January, in my mind it's still the New Year. And that means I can still start up New Year's Resolutions. Oh, you say it doesn't work that way? Oh well!

If you want to increase your sales, then you need to think about what small changes you can make to your day - every day - and put those into action. Planning one big thing to meet your new sales goals puts a lot of weight and pressure on that one thing. Instead, make 5 more calls each day. Visit one extra client each week. Create and send 5 prospecting emails each day. These small, repetitive steps will insure you get your name out there and make contact with more prospects - thereby making you more money!

Friday, January 21, 2011

8 Easy Steps to Eliminate the Non-Serious Buyer

If our goal is to make more money this year, then one of the things you need to learn is when to stop chasing a prospect that just isn't going to buy. This advice from sales trainer Rochelle Togo-Figa will put you on the path to success!

A client was disappointed she hadn't brought in any new clients in several months. She was frustrated she had set up 8 appointments and hadn't closed one. She had set high expectations and was upset with the results. We've all been there, so we know how it feels to anticipate closing business and then it doesn't happen.

As she and I discussed the situation, several things started to open up. Although she had scheduled 8 appointments, early on 2 of the people had canceled and 2 didn't want to spend the money. These 4 people were non-serious buyers. The good news was the other 4 were definitely interested.

In fact, one of the people she met liked her authentic sales style so much that she was invited to attend a party where she could network with many more potential clients. She may not have closed the sale in the time frame she had hoped to, however, she gained much more. She still had the possibility of closing this sale and now has the potential of meeting many more potential clients.

It's unlikely you will meet with a prospect and quickly close the sale. There is an emotional process that people go through before making a buying decision. They have to get to know, like and trust you. You have to be patient and willing to nurture the business relationship.

To guide the prospect through the sales process and create a long-lasting business relationship, begin by being genuinely interested in the other person, authentically communicate by listening and asking them questions, and give up any attachment you have to the outcome.

As we reviewed her appointments, we looked to see what was missing that could be put in for the next time. She thought the problem was she didn't know how to close the sale. That wasn't the problem. What was missing was doing the preparation work before the sales meeting to eliminate non-serious buyers. If she had done the preparation work, those 4 non-serious buyers would have been eliminated early on.

If you want to be well prepared for your sales meeting and close sales faster, I have 8 steps to follow that will move the sales meeting along and help you close sales in less time.

1. Set specific and realistic goals of what you want to accomplish.

2. Go into the meeting with the intention of closing the sale, but let go of any attachment to the outcome. Your focus is learning about the prospects, uncovering their pain, and showing them a solution.

3. Show them you're professional and prepared by sending a letter or email before the meeting outlining what will be covered at the meeting.

4. Call to confirm the meeting. At that time ask qualifying questions to uncover their budget and to make sure you're meeting with the decision maker.

5. Make a list for yourself of anticipated questions and responses.

6. Make a list for yourself of anticipated objections and responses.

7. Practice your presentation out loud.

8. Practice your responses to the questions and objections.

Golden opportunities are all around us. Sometimes they're hidden from our view because we think things should look a certain way and when they don't, we're disappointed. I invite you to let go of how it should look and turn every challenge into a golden opportunity.

Rochelle Togo-Figa, The Sales Breakthrough Strategist, is the creator of the Inner Game of Sales, a proven step-by-step sales process that will help you close more sales, sign on more clients and make more money with ease and velocity. To sign up for her free sales articles and teleclasses on closing more sales, visit

Thursday, January 20, 2011

What Not to Do in an Introductory Email

Today sales trainer Wendy Weiss shares an experience with email prospecting that left much to be desired. Take her tips and avoid sending an off-putting email like the one she received!

I was recently approached by the assistant of a fairly well-known sales trainer asking for help in promoting the sales trainer's new book. I get frequent requests to promote products and programs to my list (that's you) and I do so when I believe there's a good match and that the program or product would be helpful or of interest to my readers.

I was somewhat familiar with this particular trainer's work and generally have found it to be excellent. Her assistant, however, has clearly not read any of the trainer's material. This is the email the assistant sent to me:

"I would like to introduce you to (Trainer's Name) new book, (Name of Book). I believe it has wonderful ideas that your blog readers would find very helpful...

"I would like to achieve at least one of three objectives:

1. Send you the book and then set up an interview with (Trainer's Name).
2. Send you the book and ask you to write a review.
3. Permission for (Trainer's Name) to submit an article on the topic.


Really. That was it. No 'What's In It For Me' from Wendy's point of view. Instead, the assistant declared my readers would find it to be helpful and then she listed the three things she would like to achieve. This email was all about the assistant, her employer and her goals. The tone was harsh and demanding.

The first rule in any introductory email (or call) is: It's about the prospect - it's not about you. Put yourself in your prospect's shoes and identify the appropriate way to approach your prospect.

How much better this email could have been:

"(Trainer's Name) asked me to contact you to ask for your help."

Her new book, (Name of Book), will be out soon and (Trainer's Name) wondered if you'd be able to help us publicize the book.

We'd be delighted to forward a review copy so that you can assess the quality of the work.

This is how others are planning on helping:

• Interviewing (Trainer's Name)
• Writing a review of the book
• Running one of (Trainer's Name) articles.

"In addition, (Trainer's Name) wanted me to let you know that in return we'd be happy to publicize one of your future products or programs.

"Please respond to this email or call me directly at (Phone Number) if you'll be able to help us out or if you have any questions or concerns.


And had the email been phrased something like the above, perhaps I would have taken action on it.

Your prospects respond or don't respond to your language. If you're not getting the response you hope for, take another look at your language. It is make or break—or, in this case, read and delete.

Learn more from Wendy Weiss at or contact her at

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

4 More Steps to Achieve Your 2011 Sales Goals

Today sales trainer Kendra Lee picks up where she left off yesterday, with more tips for helping you achieve your sales goals this year. Her advice will definitely help you to meet and exceed your goals!

1. Look for growth in existing accounts. Of course, the easiest sales opportunities are to existing clients, so look at them next.

Where are there solutions you could be offering to customers you already have? Are some clients not taking advantage of all the services you provide? Are there other contacts or departments you could be selling to?

Find a realistic amount of growth you can expect in your current accounts, and then subtract that number from your existing total, too.

By now, your quota goal has probably shrunk considerably!

2. Uncover accounts, or revenue at risk. While you may see significant growth in many of your clients, sadly, the opposite is true as well.

No matter how great you are, some small percentage of your existing customers is likely to leave, merge, or take their business elsewhere.

Try to figure out which of your clients might be most vulnerable. You can subtract a percentage of that revenue now, for planning purposes, while making a note to yourself to pay special attention to them this year.

3. Leave yourself some wiggle room. Whatever number is remaining in your revenue goal, add 20% to it. Why? In the event that you unexpectedly lose a large account, a big deal doesn't close, or some of your plans don't work out the way you had anticipated, you'll still be right on track to achieve your revenue goal!

4. Establish your lead generation strategy. Once you've taken these steps, now comes the fun part.

Look at your remaining revenue goal – the amount you still have to generate after you've figured in your visible pipeline, existing customers, and the small percentage of accounts you might lose – and start to break it down into activity goals.

How many new accounts do you need to meet your remaining revenue goal? How many new leads will it take based on your past closing ratio? What kind of lead generation campaigns should you do to find those leads?

The second year in one of my most memorable territories I had no existing customers and little carried over in the sales pipeline. (You can see why it was memorable!) I ran lead generation events every quarter and email campaigns every two weeks.

Knowing the number of leads you need to achieve your revenue goal helps you determine what your lead generation strategy needs to be, too. It'll be easy for you to figure out what you need to do every week, month and quarter to stay on track.
The key to making it work, though, is taking your time on each step in being realistic in your estimations.

Lots of sellers fail to accomplish what they'd hoped from year to year because they never really bother to figure out exactly what they have to do to reach their goals – so take this template and use it to create a stellar 2011!

Kendra Lee is a Prospect Attraction Specialist and president of KLA Group. Specializing in the IT industry, KLA Group helps companies rapidly penetrate new markets, break into new accounts and shorten time to revenue with new products in the SMB segment.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

4 Steps to Achieve Your 2011 Sales Goals

Today and tomorrow we'll be featuring a great article from sales trainer Kendra Lee. She will be sharing easy steps you can take to achieve your 2011 sales goals - so let's get started!

The end of one year and beginning of a new one is a great opportunity to examine your successes from the previous year, determine what you want to replicate, what you want to change and then set some goals for the new one.

Because setting attainable sales goals can be a lot trickier, and more stressful, then people tend to think, I'd like to offer a step-by-step guide to help you set and reach your 2011 target.

1. Start with revenue. Some sellers, and particularly business owners who think in terms of profits, like to start with margins or other metrics when setting their sales objectives. But whether you're setting your own goals, or assigning them to a sales team, I encourage you to begin with revenue.

Customers buy based on revenue. They don't agree to pay you a certain profitability margin. If they knew your margin, they'd surely negotiate for deeper discounts!
Revenue makes sales objectives a lot more concrete for sellers. (Of course margin is a critical metric, but you need a revenue goal, too.)

2. Make it your own. There's no law that says you have to be satisfied selling at the revenue level your company needs, or the amount assigned to you. Find the figure that will allow you to reach your personal goals for the year and use it as your real quota goal. It might seem tougher at first, but it's also a lot more motivating!

3. Don't get overwhelmed. When you first see your quota or personal goal, it can seem like an enormous number, especially if it's significantly higher than last year.

Push those thoughts aside.

Concentrate on seeing the goal as a figure that will shrink as you move through your planning process.

4. Figure out how much you've identified already. Look at your sales pipeline. Examine what you already know, or have a strong suspicion, will close. Often you can see opportunities you anticipate will close through the first quarter. Depending what you sell, you may even have annual services contracts you can count on already. Subtract this number from your revenue goal.

Kendra Lee is a Prospect Attraction Specialist and president of KLA Group. Specializing in the IT industry, KLA Group helps companies rapidly penetrate new markets, break into new accounts and shorten time to revenue with new products in the SMB segment.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Quote of the Week

Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase. -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Today is a celebration in the United States of the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. A man who had a vision and worked diligently to achieve it. Take a cue from this great man and work towards your vision. Have faith in your abilities and go forward without fear.

Friday, January 14, 2011

RFPs are Rarely Final

Today sales trainer Mark Hunter shares tips on getting past the request for proposal and getting the sale!

If you think an RFP is final, think again. There always is a "next step." Are you wise enough to leverage it?

Never think that when you submit an RFP (Request for Proposal) or for that matter a bid — even a "sealed bid" – that the process is done. No matter what criteria the customer has stated, you should never think the only things you can do are what the customer has stated can be done. A few things you should do for any type of an RFP, bid, etc. is set up Google Alerts so you will receive all updates on the customer, their competitors and any other vendors who you believe may have responded to the RFP.

Second thing to do is to make sure your RFP response was received by the customer. Don't hesitate to pick up the phone and call. Don't trust email. Make the call – it will hopefully give you a chance to have a short courteous and friendly conversation with somebody.

Third, have your list of follow-up questions ready to go. The goal, of course, is to be able to have a follow-up meeting with the vendor to discuss with them; however, in the absence of a formal meeting, you want to be ready to ask a question or two at any time the opportunity arises.

Fourth, continue to develop and nurture relationships you have with the customer. With each conversation, the goal remains the same — find out one new piece of information about the customer and be able to share with them one new piece of information that educates them about how they can do their job better. Do not look at these conversations as opportunities for you to break out the list of features and benefits. Instead, look at this as an opportunity for them to see you in a different light than how they might see your competitors.

Fifth, have your list of negotiable items ready to go. This includes a list of variables you feel the customer might be interested in. Do not look to use these — merely have them ready. They should only come into play if and when you are ready to close the deal.

Sixth, go back and review the strategy you first developed before you began working on the RFP. The strategy you developed at the beginning is the strategy you want to maintain all the way through the process. Don't deviate! When you deviate, you run into problems, and the number one problem you will run into is giving away profit all for the sake of trying to "win" a proposal that in the end you can't afford to win.

Mark Hunter, "The Sales Hunter", is a sales expert who speaks to thousands each year on how to increase their sales profitability. For more information, to receive a free weekly email sales tip, or to read his Sales Motivation Blog, visit

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Know Your Audience and Adapt Accordingly

Communication expert Dianna Booher gives great advice you can use during your presentations and interactions with prospects and clients. Check out what she has to say about knowing your audience.

Know your audience and understand the value of adapting your message accordingly. Some people primarily take in information visually. Others pay attention to what they hear and rarely notice what they see. Still others learn and draw conclusions kinesthetically--primarily through what they experience with their own senses.

As individuals, people also vary along the continuum between the two extremes of directness--either very direct, bordering on the blunt, or indirect, expecting others to read their minds. Their words fall somewhere between a hint and a hammer.

In addition to individual styles, consider cultural uniqueness. In high-context cultures the message comes not only from the words, but the context of the words: Who said it? When? How? In response to what? What was not said? In other words, meanings are often implied and understood from many things other than words.

On consulting assignments, I’ve watched people walk into an executive boardroom to make a presentation, get an icy reception, and walk out with no idea why the group did not sign off on their project. The reason may have been a cocky attitude conveyed through their posture, a laid-back attitude that showed in their lack of preparation, their disrespect shown through dress, or their irritation piqued in response to questions.

As an effective communicator, your challenge is to understand that context--and adapt your style to that of the other person to achieve your purpose. Otherwise, your conversation will prove to be as fruitless as trying to play a tennis tournament with someone who refuses even to return the ball.

Author of 42 books, Dianna Booher, CSP, CPAE, delivers keynotes, breakout sessions, and training on communication and life-balance issues. Her latest books: Speak with Confidence, Your Signature Life, Your Signature Work, E-Writing, and Communicate with Confidence.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Secrets of Success Right Now

Sales trainer Joe Guertin likes to keep things simple, and so do I. Follow these sixteen truths from Guertin and you'll go the distance in 2011:

Know your personal strengths

Know your personal weaknesses even better.

Push yourself, then push harder.

End procrastination

Embrace change. Nobody cares how things used to be done.

Embrace technology. Without it, you'll age fast.

Believe in yourself. Technology alone, will not sell...that's your job

Differentiate Don't be just another egg in the carton

Seek great counsel. Talk to those you respect, ask questions

Listen more, talk less

Stop wasting time

Discover your 'toxic habits' Get rid of them.

Hang with positive people They'll take you higher

Think big. Then act big.


And finally, start having more fun. Sure, the stress and minutia of our profession can be draining, but so what? A part of sales now is managing and even thriving on the craziness that comes with it. Drink it up!

Joe Guertin is an advertising sales trainer, speaker and coach. His programs have informed and entertained sales professionals nationwide. Visit his Sales Resource Center at

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Secret Ingredient for Sales Success

There's a secret ingredient for sales success? Sign me up! Sales trainer Kelley Robertson explains.

McDonald's has their secret sauce. KFC has their secret recipe. And, infomercials have a secret formula that help make them successful.

The most successful sales people also have a secret ingredient. An ingredient that is often overlooked, neglected or dismissed by their colleagues or coworkers.

This ingredient separates the average sales person from everyone else. It can help you transform from an average sales person who struggles to meet their monthly or quarterly quota to someone who consistently exceeds their targets.

It's a simple concept. And because it is so simple many people ignore it.

Are you ready? Here it is.

Practice. Practice. Practice.

Anyone who embarks on learning a new hobby, sport, or language quickly learns that practice is the only to master that skill. It's no different in sales. It is ALWAYS difficult when you implement something new into your routine.

When you first begin making cold calls, it will always feel uncomfortable. When you ask new, tough, penetrating questions it will feel awkward. When you deal directly with objections it may seem aggressive. And when you first start asking people for the sale, it will cause your heart rate to increase.

The key is to practice these new procedures until they start feeling comfortable and natural. Only then will they start to work. Make the time to practice new concepts and you WILL improve your results.

As President of The Robertson Training Group, Kelley has helped thousands of professionals improve their business results with his engaging approach to sales training and speaking. Learn more at

Monday, January 10, 2011

Quote of the Week

"A man wrapped up in himself makes a very small bundle." -- Benjamin Franklin

It's easy to feel isolated when you're in sales - after all, you are the person who's solely responsible for the money you make. That's why it's so easy to forget that if we open ourselves up to others, things can be better - and easier! For example, try helping a colleague break into a new account, and they'll likely do the same for you. Ask friends and family for possible leads, or for help with creative ideas on contacting those leads. Getting more people involved in your business, and helping people with theirs, will only broaden your network and bring more business your way.

Let us know - how do you work with others to expand your business?

Friday, January 7, 2011

Take Control of Your Dreams in 2011

The New Year signifies a fresh start - and what you may need to grow your business is a fresh start in the way you think! Sales trainer Billy Cox explains.

What dreams do you have for 2011? Or even betters, do you have dreams for 2011? It's time to take control.

The first step to taking control of your life and your dreams for the future is to accept responsibility for where you are right now. I can tell you for absolute certainty that you will never achieve lasting success if you don't take complete responsibility for yourself and your life.

Early in life I realized that no one was going to help me achieve my dreams and goals unless I helped myself first. If I was going to live my dreams it had to start with me- my attitude, my thoughts and my actions. I finally understood at a gut level, "If it is to be it's up to me".

I discovered that this is the same type of realization that all successful people come to eventually. They reach to a turning point in their lives when they recognize that they are the only ones who can take control of their future. Sadly, there are countless people who spend their lives feeling sorry for themselves, blaming others for where they are at in life and what they don't have. These people allow past events and circumstances to dictate today's actions.

You must realize the greatest determining factor in your future is that today's actions equal tomorrows results. Where you're going in your life is a product of your attitude, beliefs thoughts, actions and reactions to the challenges you face.

The good news is, the more you accept responsibility for your life, the more powerful and confident you feel. Why? Because you're in control! When you decide to stop blaming others and quit accepting your own excuses, you will see that you can create the future you desire.

Billy Cox is a self-development speaker who has the unique ability to bring business and life issues together with a focus on business. He is the author of The All-Star Sales Book, The Dream Book and You Gotta Get In The Game. He can be contacted by calling 1-800-722-4685 or

Thursday, January 6, 2011

How to Handle the "I don't have the Time" Objection

We're only a few days into the New Year, and I don't know about you, but I'm already scrambling! Things are busy, busy, busy - and your prospects are already feeling the crunch. Today sales trainer Mike Brooks offers tips on how to react when your prospect doesn't have the time.

Welcome to the New Year! So, are you ready to start cold calling, prospecting and reaching out to prospects? If so, you'd better be prepared for what is sure to be one of the biggest brush off objections this year: "I'm too busy/don't have the time to talk to you now."

Because of the personnel cuts over the last 24 months, you've probably noticed (even at your own company!), that many companies have laid people off and more work is required of those who are still employed. What that means to you is that you must be prepared for this and even more so, you must be equipped with the right scripts to handle this objection.

As I've written over and over, the top 20% sales reps who are going to be successful in today's market are those who are prepared for the objections and selling situations they will find themselves in 90% of the time. The other 80% of sales reps? They will continue to struggle because they will insist on ad-libbing it and making it up as they go along.

To help you be prepared for the "I don't have the time" brush off, memorize these scripts below and be prepared to use them every time you get this objection:

Response #1:

"I know that feeling; my desk is full of things I need to do, too. I'd be happy to schedule a time to call you back, but I don't want to bother you if you're really not interested. Let me ask you a quick question and be honest with me:

If I could show you a (system/product/service) that is proven to (reduce your overhead, generate more sales, etc.), would it be worth it for you and I to take for just 5 minutes to see how it could work for you?"

If NO: "No problem. Before I go, who else do you know that might be able to use a system like this?"

If Yes: "Terrific. Do you have 5 minutes right now?"

If No: "I'm looking at my schedule, what is a good time later today?"

Response #2:

"___________ you probably get a lot of calls like I do, and my initial reaction is to say I'm too busy as well. But I can explain this to you in just 3 minutes and if you think it can help you we can schedule more time later - and if you don't we can part friends, is that fair?"

Response #3:
"I'm with you. Before I schedule time to get back with you, just a quick question: Is it a priority for you to (fix or improve what your product or service will do for them) this quarter?"

Response #4:
"I'm glad you're busy, that means that you don't have the time to waste looking at things you have no intention of taking advantage of. Quick question: If I could show you a proven way to (get the benefits of your product or service), is that something that you would invest 5 minutes learning more about?"

Response #5:
"No problem. I know what it's like to be interrupted. Would it be better to call you back right after your meeting, say in about a half hour, or would you prefer to set up a quick 5 minute call for tomorrow morning?"

Can you see how much more effective you will be by being prepared with and using these kinds of scripts? Believe me, it will separate you from the majority of your competition.

Mike Brooks,, is creator and publisher of the "Top 20% Inside Sales Tips" weekly Ezine. If you're ready to Double Your Income Selling Over the Phone, then sign up to receive your FREE tips now at:

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Tips for Staying Productive

I love Andrea Nierenberg's newsletter - it's a great mix of practical advice and inspirational stories. Today she shares a great list that will help you to be productive each day, and take care of yourself!

As I was reviewing some great lists for daily production and having a great day, I came across one that can be adapted to almost any type of professional. See which ones apply to you and then act on them:

1. Write down your daily goals—(when we put them to pen and paper or on your desktop-there is more commitment)

2. Have your call list ready before the day starts everyday

3. Listen to a motivational segment—5-10 minutes is all you need daily

4. Eat a balanced and healthy breakfast and do some sort of exercise

5. Review your business plan—(make sure you have one)

6. Be prepared for all appointments on the phone and externally

7. Appreciate and/or Encourage someone—(take the action step here—it is one thing to think about it and another to act on it)

8. Prompt a referral

9. Say thank you—verbally and through the written word - 3 times a least

10. Keep your desk neat and throw out anything you have not acted on in the last 30 days—or file it---act on it now or delegate

Andrea Nierenberg is the president of The Nierenberg Group, a business communications company with a total process for educating, motivating and connecting people. Learn more at

Monday, January 3, 2011

Quote of the Week

"Great minds have purpose, others have wishes." -- Washington Irving, American Author

Happy New Year!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday, and are excited to get started in the New Year! I'm ready to get started, and I think this quote is very inspirational. It's traditional to make wishes for what you want out of the new year, but the better move is to think with purpose. This requires planning and strategic thinking. From there, take steps each day to move towards your goals. And of course, be excited for what lies ahead!