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The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

With the year winding down, perhaps it’s a good time to take stock of what you have accomplished so far this year, file away the lessons of your successes and failures, and begin thinking about what you’d like to accomplish in the coming year. 

But, that’s exactly what many salespeople attempt to do when they engage with a new prospect. Typically, it plays out in one of two ways. Either the salesperson attempts to force his solution on the prospect (after nothing more than a cursory analysis of the situation), or he allows the prospect to dictate the solution (again, without a proper analysis of the situation).

Dianna Booher is the author of 47 books, including Communicate Like A Leader, and founder of Booher Research. The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Later this month, myself and Marketing Director, Lindsey Demetris, are hosting a free webinar detailing how to drive revenues through social selling. We plan on teaching our viewers how to target efficiently, connect appropriately, and build engagement.

The new year is right around the corner and it’s filled with new opportunities and challenges. As we head into 2018, make sure that you’re as prepared as possible to lead your team to success. To be an effective manager, it’s important to fully understand your team dynamic. Below are five keys to doing just that.

Today’s sales professionals find themselves facing unprecedented, and often uncomfortable, change. More and more salespeople have larger territories than they used to have,  and are responsible for selling a wider range of products and services than they’ve ever sold. They've got a lot to do, and they usually have less time in which to do it than they had last year.

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

You’re a salesperson. You’ve just checked the wall calendar. You realize that the third quarter is officially over. A chill runs down your spine, because you know this means that you are 75% through the year and you haven't yet come close to the track you need to be on to achieve your yearly goals.

Rule number 29, don't chase purple squirrels. Stay focused and stick to the agenda during sales meetings. People are pretty predictable and purple squirrels are defined as things that they throw onto a meeting that has nothing to do with the topic. 

Early in every sellers’ career, they learn to segment clients. They have As, Bs, Cs, and “everybody else.” What separates great sellers from others, is their ability to balance these segments and manage their relationship with each. 

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

The primary questions looming in the minds of prospects when they first talk with salespeople are, “What do you know about my company?” and “What do you know about my industry?”​ If, in the first few minutes of conversation, you don’t convey through your questions or comments that you understand something about the company’s goals or the challenges it faces, the interaction will be short-lived.  You’ll be perceived as “just another salesperson.” 

Rule 28. A sales meeting is your sales presentation. Master the skills that support a great sales meeting. Here's the bottom line, we want our sales meetings to be great, and we know they're not. And sometimes they're not because we're running from one meeting, we thought we had about a 30-minute window to get ourselves ready for a sales meeting which turns into a three-minute window and so we show up unprepared.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

The ears have to hear what the mouth is going to say. I believe roleplay is one of the most important things that you could do as a sales leader. Why? It makes you strong, but it also creates muscle memory for your team. Here's what happens when we don't role play. We tell people what to change in their sales process. 

With the start of basketball season this month, it’s the perfect time to focus on building a great team. The phrase “dream team” gets thrown around a lot, but it’s most commonly referenced when discussing the incredible collection of talent that was assembled by USA Basketball for the 1992 Olympics. 

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

Rule #25: Don't let sales people leave training in the classroom. Use a collaborative, equal partnership inside and outside the training room. Here's the bottom line for sales leaders. You may have other people doing training for your organization and training your people. But, ultimately, you are still responsible for your team.

Greg Nanigian, Sandler Trainer and Author, wrote his first book, Why People Buy. It’s a must-read for any sales professional in your organization who isn’t in control of the customers’ buying process, is unsure of what motivates clients and prospects, or needs to enhance their chances of closing the deal.

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

A good business relationship whether it is buyer/seller or manager/employee is based on the assumption that both parties have an interest in doing things to accomplish the same goal.  The first step in persuading someone to do what you want or need them to do is to establish and Adult-to-Adult relationship with the other person. 

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

Traditionally performance evaluations (or reviews) are a “check the box” exercise designed to appease HR. These evaluations typically come down to a “good kid” (you made your number / performed to expectations) or “bad kid” (you didn’t make your number) comment from a manager. 

Rule number 22. Hey, people don't argue with their own data. Use self-discovery to break through performance barriers. I learned this a long time ago. People remember 20% of what they see, 30% of what they hear, but 90% of what they say and do.

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

Let’s face it motivation, or motivating others is hard, especially if they are employees of yours. One of the most common things I hear from business leaders is “our people just need to be motivated.” Now, in all honesty, this may be a true statement. 

Rule number 21. Empower your people to succeed without you. Coaching creates wisdom. Now think about that for a second. Coaching is one of the four hats of leadership and you're going to spend anywhere from 20 to 30 percent of your time as a coach.

Change management is the systematic approach to transitioning from one environment to another through the reassignment of resources, business processes, budget allocations, or other aspects that significantly alter a company or organization.

The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

A while back I attended a one-day Prospecting Boot Camp for salespeople in the heart of downtown London. After nine days of visiting attractions abroad, I decided to let my wife do the final day by herself, so I could endeavor to learn the differences (if any) in the mindset of British salespeople from their American counterparts.

Rule number 20. Mentor to a success profile. Create a success profile that people can grow into. Mentoring is where you're going to spend five to 10% of your time. It's a key aspect of leadership, but we don't do it often enough, so you need a process for it. 

Bill Bartlett, a Sandler trainer and author of the best-selling Sandler book, The Sales Coach's Playbook, talks about his best practices for coaching your team through an organizational change. Bill shares his attitudes, behaviors, and techniques for coaching in this special episode.

Rule #19: Train Your Team. Make sure they get the skills necessary to do the job. Listen leaders, training is one of the four hats of leadership. You're going to spend anywhere from 20 to 30% of your time in your training function. Now, do I train less or more if I have experienced people? Of course, that's why you have a 20 to 30% swing. The more experienced people that you have, maybe the less that you have to train in some of the basic stuff.

Use The Navy SEAL's 40% Rule To Achieve The Impossible. A common obstacle of success in sales leadership is getting stuck in a rut. Worry, fear and doubt are manufactured emotions that can limit a sales team’s ability to achieve their goals and potential. The rut is a comfort zone for you and your organization. Success can still happen in the rut, but according to the Navy SEAL’s 40% Rule, the big wins will never be achieved here. 

Rule #18: Create the Curbs on the Roadway. You know, too much supervision creates learned helplessness. Think about that as an example. Do you want to create learned helplessness on your team? Probably part of you does. The ego part of you wants everyone to ask you what to do next. 

Antonio Garrido, Sandler trainer, and new author of Asking Questions the Sandler Way joins us to talk about the best sales questions. You will learn his favorite questions, the right attitude for asking questions, and why you should be asking more and better questions in the first place.

As you progress through your career, there comes a time when you need to stop moving horizontally,  and begin to climb the ladder. When you realize where you are most valuable, and you decide to take the next step, that typically comes with the added responsibility of leadership.

Students of the Sandler methodology quickly learn that selling is not about lists of compelling features and benefits; it’s not about clever closes or flashy literature and expensive marketing collateral. It’s not about hogging all the airtime in the meeting, nor is it about forcing our own agenda into the buying process. It’s not about jazzy presentations or brow-beating the other guy into submission.

You know as a leader, you're going to have many different roles throughout the day when you interact with your team and your coworkers. We call them the four hats of leadership. Those four hats are supervision, training, mentoring, and coaching. All four of them are equally as important. Supervision, goal setting, setting expectations, having daily conversations, sales funnel management. 

The sales industry is fast-paced now and isn’t showing signs of slowing down. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the clutter of new selling techniques, emerging technologies, and more specialized analytics. Although those components – and some others – can play a major role in your level of success. It would be a mistake to spend too much time on them and ignore the basics. Before you get carried away learning this or that, remember to take it back to your roots and ensure that you are providing optimum customer service. If you have strayed a bit or are just looking for a reminder, below are five imperative tactics to employ in your practice.

Lauren Valentine, a Sandler trainer from Albany, talks about her best practices for shortening your sales cycle and closing deals faster. Whether you are looking for a one-call close or have a long cycle that needs to be quicker, Lauren shares her attitudes, behaviors, and techniques for moving deals through the pipeline quickly.

Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler selling system.

Do you talk too much?  Many salespeople do. How do I know that? Because I use to do it! But more significantly, when I visit a store and indicate my interest in something it seems the sales clerk takes that as a cue to talk too much.

Rule #15: People work harder for their reasons than they do yours. Motivate the individual to hit the corporate goal. Here's what this means. We all have kids, and when you want a kid to play an instrument because you love the instrument and you want them to be successful, you push, push, push. If they don't have the passion, confidence, and conviction that that's what they want to do, they end up not doing it. You spend a lot of time and energy having them live through your eyes, and the same thing holds true with corporate goals.

Amy Woodall, a Sandler trainer, talks about her best practices for managing expectations. Whether you are setting the first appointment with a prospect, setting clear guidelines for delivery, or just talking with your co-workers or spouse, setting expectations can be the difference between success and failure. Amy shares attitudes, behaviors, and techniques for setting clear up-front agreements with others.

In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler Training explores the Sandler Selling Philosophies behind the Sandler Selling System with Chuck Polin, a Sandler Trainer.

How many times have you faced a task and the first thought that came to mind was something like “I can’t…,” “That will never work…,” “What’s the point of…,” or “I’m afraid that…”?  More times than you’d care to admit, perhaps? Each time you entertain a negative thought about your ability to achieve a goal, solve a problem, or deal with any situation, you’re poisoning your own well—filling your subconscious with negative unproductive thoughts that it eventually accepts as FACTS, despite the lack of any evidence as such. 

Did you know that the average tenure of a Sales VP is only between 24-32 months? They barely have time to unpack their bags and get settled before they are looking for another position. In the meantime, the company has not only lost its Sales VP but probably its best sales person as well. Why is this? And is there something that can be done to change this dynamic?

Rule 14: Risk failure to achieve growth. I-10's learn from failure. Wow, I'll tell you what. This rule is action packed with Sandler philosophies and tactics. First of all, we have to embrace failure. Everyone's going to fail. You failed when you were a kid learning how to ride a bike. We fail in all the different roles that we have throughout the day.

In our constant pursuit to arm you with tools to become a sales master, we recently released a new book titled, Winning From Failing, by Sandler Trainer, Josh Seibert. While there are entirely too many teachings in the book to list here, below we have highlighted a few that encompass the essence of the book and are important takeaways for managers.

Learn how to succeed at aligning sales and marketing. Erik Host-Steen, Founder of SMP Alignment, shares his best practices for aligning your sales and marketing teams. From effective handoffs to qualified leads and using technology to smooth out the process. Erik talks about how to get your sales and marketing departments to work together.

In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler Training explores the Sandler Selling Philosophies behind the Sandler Selling System with Michael Norton, EVP of Global Accounts at Sandler Trainer.

Compensating the sales team is one of the toughest things to get right in your business. If you pay them too little, good salespeople will leave for better opportunities. Pay them too much, and they get complacent and stop growing revenue. To inspire and motivate top performing salespeople, you must use the Goldilocks Principle and get the compensation package “just right.” Let’s look at the pros and cons of some popular options.

Rule #13. Be a comfort zone buster. There's no room at Complacency Inn. What does that mean? Well, have you ever run into a situation where somebody on your team was killing it? I mean doing everything that they had to do, above and beyond, things that they felt uncomfortable doing and things that they felt comfortable doing.  

Matt Pletzer, a Sandler Trainer, shares his best practices for selling something new that no one has ever heard of. Sure, we would all love to be Apple and have people talking about us all the time, and people lined up to buy our new products. Unfortunately, most salespeople have to try to open doors and new markets when the prospects have never heard of you. In this episode, Matt talks about the attitude, behavior, and technique of doing just that.

In our firm, one of the top requests we get is to help write or re-write scripts for companies. Each time we get this request I smile, because we know scripts simply do not work.  There are four key reasons why scripts don’t work.

In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler Training explores the Sandler Selling Philosophies behind the Sandler Selling System with Rich Isaac, a Sandler Trainer.

I made this statement about the fact that it's not what we sell that makes us different, it's how we sell it. Although he had heard that Sandler rule before, he was taken back and asked me to repeat it several times. What he began to understand was that to differentiate ourselves in selling situations we often look at the features and benefits of what we're selling. 

Rule #11: Mange behavior, not results. Create a cookbook or a recipe for success. You know, many sales leaders and sales managers, they manage numbers, not behavior. Think about that for a second. How many of us are knee deep into spreadsheets every single day?   

In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler Training explores the Sandler Selling Philosophies behind the Sandler Selling System with Paul Lanigan, a Sandler Trainer.

I taught the subject of “Personal Selling” as an adjunct professor at Loyola University Maryland for twelve years. The academic-industrial complex required the use of a textbook in class, and occasionally, I used it, often to point out the crazy ideas that Ph.D.’s who write textbooks have about the business world.

Rule #10: Treat the job interview as a sales call, which means it's your job to disqualify.

As a manager or leader, you are tasked with many responsibilities. You must strive for success for each member of your team, for your company, and of course, for your clients. This balancing act can become overwhelming if you don’t properly prioritize your objectives and navigate the obstacles that combat effectiveness. Here are four key points to keep in mind in your quest for optimal efficiency.

In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler training explores the Sandler Selling Philosophies behind the Sandler Selling System with Roger Wentworth, a Sandler Trainer.

Josh Seibert is a long-time Sandler Trainer and our latest author. He joins us to talk about the lessons from his new book, Winning Through Failing. He shares why failure is a critical part of success, not the opposite of success. Learn how to set the stage for failure and use it to grow faster and expand your comfort zone.

Today we're talking about the top sales challenges that we face as individual sales producers. We have different types of people who listen to the show. Certainly short selling cycles, long selling cycles, transactional consultative. It's all over the board. Some do sales and service and some just do sales. At the end of the day, we all have challenges and a lot of these challenges that we have fallen into some general areas.

Rule #8: See People through Their Lens. Use DISC to understand how you and your people see the world so that you can lead more effectively. You know the DISC behavioral model will help you understand how to communicate more effectively with your team and anywhere else. You've got to understand and acknowledge how they interpret the world: how they communicate, how they want to be motivated, how they see the world, and where you then can adapt your style to match theirs.  

Welcome to the How to Succeed Podcast. The show that helps you get to the top and stay there. This is How To Succeed at Selling Girl Scout Cookies. The show is brought to you by Sandler Training the worldwide leader and sales management and customer service training. For more information on Sandler Training, including white papers, webinars, and more, visit Sandler.com.

There’s an adage that rings true for sales careers, “if it was easy, everyone would be doing it.” Proficient salespeople have some of the highest job satisfaction across all industries and can have very rewarding and lucrative careers. On the other side of the coin, selling — especially commission based selling — isn’t for everyone. Inexperienced or ineffective salespeople may have a hard time breaking into the profession.

In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler Training explores the top sales challenges and how to overcome them with Mike Ross, a Sandler Trainer.

You know drama is one of those things that bring TV ratings. Everybody loves drama. Everybody loves to watch reality TV these days cause it's a freight train about to happen but we can't turn it off. People are attracted to drama. Just the natural way it is. But you don't want drama at your workplace. Drama is poison. 

There are several significant challenges that sales representatives and sales teams face in selling into complex enterprise accounts. One of the most daunting is that enterprise sales cycles can be long and drawn out. Months and years can pass while pursuing an opportunity with an enterprise organization. And as the time passes, the doubt, uncertainty, risks, and costs add up. And this draining of resources goes beyond the financial.  The human assets applied to an enterprise pursuit and the overall energy of the selling organization are also casualties over time.

Gabe Larson, Director of the InsideSales.com Labs and host of the Sales Acceleration podcast, joins us for a special conversation about the end of the month. Gabe's team has just released new information about the best and worst practices of sales teams at the end of the month. Learn what to do and what not to do to make the most of the last few days of the quota period.

Welcome to a special program presented by Sandler Training. Today's show is designed to deal with the hardest situation that you as a salesperson are experiencing, or you as a leader, or some of the most common issues that you're facing day to day. It's really the stuff that gives you stress. What we're going to talk about today are some tactics and strategies to help you progress either your sale from one step to the next, or your organization, your company. We've got two different types of groups listening today. We've got leaders/managers, and we also have some sales professionals. We're going to go back and forth throughout the day. Regardless, if you've got to progress your organization or progress your sale, I think being stuck—as an example, in the sales process—is not a healthy place to be.

Rule #6: Create self-sufficiency. Don't fix but explore. You know as sales leaders, how many times in a given week do people come in and say, "I've got a big call tomorrow. What would you do, Dave?" Intuitively, I know what to do, and every ounce of my being wants to say, "Do this, this, this and this." But the problem with that is that they didn't connect the dots. 

“Just put me in coach, I’ll create miracles.”  That enthusiasm is great and can indeed have a strong impact on a sales team, but there are some common mistakes the new sales manager make:

Lindsay Harle- Kadatz, Sandler client and author of "Depression Constipation," joins us for a special conversation about mental health in sales and entrepreneurship. Lindsay talks about how journaling and small actions helped her to get unblocked and moving again.

We are proud to introduce a new Sandler podcast, Selling the Sandler Way with host Dave Mattson, the  President and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler Selling System. Listen to episode one in which Dave discusses the psychology behind the sale with Sandler Trainer, Pat Heidrich.

You and your team worked hard to land a new account and the prospect went with someone else. What now? If you’re at a loss for what to do next, below are five actionable items that you can implement with your team.

Rule #5: Eliminate miscommunication. What was said? What was heard? Check before you respond. You know, every person has three recorders that were taping since they were born. We have a Parent, an Adult and a Child. Three roles that we still have today if you think about it. But these tape recorders were starting and stopping at different times. And it affects how you interact with your team and how your team interacts with their sales force, even today.

Welcome to the "How to Succeed Podcast." The show that shows you how to get to the top and stay there. This is "How to Succeed at Preventing Objections."  The show is brought to you by Sandler Training. The worldwide leader in sales, management and customer service training. For more information on Sandler Training, including free wi-papers, webinars and more, visit Sandler.com and look under the resources tab.  I'm your host Mike Montague and my guest this week is Joe Ippolito He is a Sandler trainer from Boston. And we're gonna talk to him about how to succeed at preventing objections. Joe, welcome to the show. Tell me a little bit about objections and why you picked this for a topic and who should be paying attention today?

Welcome to the How to Succeed Podcast, the show that helps you get to the top and stay there. This is how to succeed at patient care. The show is brought to you by Sandler, the worldwide leader in sales, management and customer service training. For more information on Sandler, visit Sandler.com. I'm your host, Mike Montague, and my guest this week is Donna Bak. She is a Sandler trainer from Connecticut and brand new author of the new Sandler book, "Patient Care The Sandler Way". We're going to talk to her about how to succeed at patient care. Donna, welcome to the show. Tell me a little bit about patient care and who should be listening today.

Holding your people accountable is simple. In working with sales leaders around the world, accountability isn’t easy because those leaders possess one of three self-limiting beliefs that cripple their accountability program.

At this point, if you have yet to begin thinking about offering a summer internship, you’re probably behind. That’s okay though, we’re here to help. Below are 5 great ways to maximize the value of a summer internship for both you and those you hire. 

It’s already the second quarter; is it too late to discuss sales mistakes to avoid in 2017?  Or lessons learned in 2016?  It matters not what month or year it is, for some sales lessons are timeless, and furthermore, we need to revisit them on a regular basis.

Sales enablement is the idea – and follow me here – that all employees who interact with clients should have the tools and are able to do so easily, consistently, and effectively.  To empower your employees to do this, there are three major areas of focus to consider: Tracking and AnalysisTechnique/Training, Technology and Tools. If you can incorporate a system that excels at bringing your employees through all three of these phases, you will be well on your way to enabling a successful team.

Wow, what an amazing first year for the How to Succeed Podcast! Thank you so much for helping to make it as a success. The podcast was launched last April with 5 episodes and quickly hit the charts in the new and notable section in iTunes. Now, with over 60 shows in the can, we can truly say that we are helping people get to their best and stay there. The show has received over 90,000 total downloads, and it is now averaging over 15,000 per month. We have had listeners in 92 countries.

In 1963, psychologist Bruce Tuckman termed the four primary stages of team development as; forming, storming, norming, and performing. Tuckman deemed that these phases must be traversed naturally for a team to grow, find solutions, plan work, and deliver results. While a lot has changed in the world of business and team building over the past 50 years, Tuckman’s model for group development has continued to ring true. To illustrate and modernize the motivation behind each phase, let’s examine both inspiring and unimpressive examples of each as we work our way through Tuckman’s ideology.

If you were to Google ‘servant leadership,’ you would come across a list of traits that included some or all of the following; listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, building community, and nurturing. While each of these components are valuable, the sheer number of them convolutes a fairly straight forward ideology. 

Developing a championship caliber sales team should be the goal of any sales leader. All champions, whether it is the Cubs, Patriots or newly crowned, Tarheels, are focused on doing their individual roles as well as possible, committed to the on-going improvement of themselves and the team, the culture sets high expectations, and the teams win. As difficult as this may be to accomplish for your sales team, it is not as hard as you think if you can implement these four championship elements.

In working with thousands of salespeople and sales managers, a consistent area of concern they have is to improve on their stall and objection handling skills. When prospects say things like “we’re not quite ready,” “your price is too high,” “were staying where we are,” “you do the same thing my current supplier does,” I could go on.

Email marketing is an inexpensive and effective way to get in touch with prospects if you take the proper steps in crafting them. The information you relay in your email and the way you share it has a direct impact on how well your email will perform with recipients. You don’t have to be a professional writer to get attention or to create a successful email campaign, but you should be concise and include compelling information. Most prospective buyers are bombarded with emails from a variety of businesses, on a daily basis. Incorporating the right details allow you to break through the clutter and helps ensure that you make a connection. 

Third-party stories, testimonials, case study, reviews, and other “social proof” can be a powerful technique in your sales toolkit. Storytelling carries a fair amount influence with your prospects and clients when done correctly. Stories can also redirect conflict, create an emotional connection, and help illustrate key features and benefits.

2017 was going to be different. My sales team and I had lofty expectations and challenging goals, but we knew we would attain them. The year started off well and we saw positive results right out of the gate. Then, we lost a client, we had an issue with our network, and when the warm weather came through, we were completely knocked out of our groove. Sound familiar? 

Last week, Sandler Training hosted the world’s top leadership, management, and sales professionals at a summit in Orlando Florida. More than 1,200 people joined Sandler in the sun to learn about sales and leadership, share best practices, and further our knowledge of how to succeed.  The conference was incredible. From the opening video eliciting goosebumps to the #SandlerSummit trending nationally on Twitter with over 3.5 Million views, the room was electric. I have come away with so many notes and action items, but I have highlighted the top 3 lessons learned from last week.

Whether it is time for a touch-point call or you’re visiting a new prospect for the first time, incorporating one or more of these phrases into your approach could be a deal killer. From giving your prospect an easy way to put things off to using too much jargon or lingo, it’s time to strike these words and phrases from your selling vocabulary.

Traditional sales training says present, present, present and close, close, close – convince your prospect with a compelling presentation, show him enough value, and he will surely buy.  When I first got into sales I really sweated the presentations.  I practiced them over and over; used different visual props and brochures; tried a variety of persuasive arguments; and created notebooks full of evidence favoring my product and my company.  Ultimately it became apparent that no matter how exciting or compelling my presentation was, my close rate was mostly dependent on what happened before the presentation, not during it.

While a sales conference can reignite your fire and provide an abundance of new insights and tools, it can also be a chaotic experience. The better prepared you are to hunt for useful insights, information and connections, the more you’ll come away with. Some of the most common frustrations surrounding conferences include coping with speakers and panels who don’t fully cover a topic, finding time to network and even gaining insight from talks that don’t seem immediately relevant.

Need some motivation? Look no further than this group of TED Talks, from experts in a variety of fields. From the aid worker who battled hippos (and lost) to the analyst who discovered the power of drawing toast (and how those drawings revealed simple solutions to complex problems),” this roundup of TED Talks is ideal for motivating yourself or your sales team.

It’s not uncommon for a new hire to start out strong.  But after the initial excitement and enthusiasm for the new job fades, the behavior, performance, and “numbers” follow suit.

Remember this rule when meeting with potential customers at your trade show booth:  The essence of selling is not telling; it is asking questions and sharing third party stories that will help your prospect self-discover his own need for your product or service.  People do not buy features and benefits; they buy solutions to problems.  If you want to stand out from your competition, stop overloading prospects with information and brochures.  Start asking thought and emotion provoking questions.

There are only 24 hours (or 1,440 minutes) in a day. What you do with those hours has a direct impact on your overall productivity and your career. From the cold calls you have to make to the internal meetings and client visits, how can you squeeze it all into each day without missing out? The way you schedule your time, the format of your meetings and even your approach to delegation are important. Your overall approach to time management can help you make the most of each day to ensure you have a positive impact on your career.

You’ve closed the deal – but your job isn’t done quite yet. Managing client expectations can help you make the most of your new relationship and ensure you are striking the right balance. By working together to outline goals, define success, and clearly communicating your progress and milestones, you can increase transparency to build the long lasting relationship with your new client.

Role play is one of the best methods for developing your people, but salespeople loath role play and managers shy away from it, because it often becomes an exercise that leaves participants frustrated. Putting role play through the lens of David Sandler’s Success Triangle – attitude, behavior, and technique – both managers and salespeople could role play more effectively and increase both their role performance, outlook, and technique.

What do the first seven seconds of meeting you say about you, your work ethic, and your ability to be successful? Every fiber you zip, shrug, or button into tells a story about you. Smart business people understand this and use it to craft a strong personal brand. While you don't need to wear a business suit every day of your life, unless you are in a super-professional industry, it's critical to selectively choose your clothing. 

Fear may be the most powerful motivator affecting your buyers’ decisions. However, in their effort to maintain an image of power and control, buyers will be reluctant to share their true anxieties and concerns with you. You’ll increase your sales production when you help buyers discover and overcome their fears, show that you are sensitive to those issues, and then lead those buyers to the conclusion that your product will replace their fear with peace of mind.

Hiring season is here, and it’s you’re chance to show off your skills and really shine. You may be one in a million, but you could be competing with dozens of others to secure the sales job you’ve been dreaming of. The right preparation and an idea of some of the elements that are commonly included in sales interviews can help give you an edge.

2016 has been a year of many successes. Whether you are a sales representative, a sales manager, or simply interested in learning more about trending topics in the sales industry, we hope you have gathered some key insights from our blog this year. Before moving into 2017, we would like to take a look back and highlight some important topics from 2016.

After Thanksgiving, many of us sales people feel fat and happy, and decide to pull off the throttle and take some down time. After all, nobody really wants to talk to sales people, make decisions, or think about expenditures. Right? Wrong! The little known secret is that the holiday season is a fantastic time to assemble a powerful framework that builds your business, and sets you up for a great first quarter.

Reaching out to customers via mobile messaging has proven to be an effective strategy to grow both revenues and customer loyalty. If your business doesn’t run a mobile messaging campaign, then may be time to start.

If you don’t start your sales calls with the end in mind, you should not be surprised when it doesn’t end up where you hoped. For example, at the end of a good presentation, your prospect leaves you with a Think-It-Over. After all, you can’t blame a prospect for doing something that you failed to emphasize is unacceptable. If you want to control what happens at the end of a sales call, focus on the beginning.

By focusing on tracking activities in a Customer Relationship Management software, you can evaluate which things influence prospects to move forward in your sales process. Understanding exactly what’s moving a deal forward will help you decide the best next steps you should take to close any similar deal in the future. Tracking activities also highlights the telltale signs that a deal might be slipping away, and helps you pay it the proper attention to keep it moving forward. 

People buy emotionally; we’ve all heard that. But what does it mean? It means that people make buying decisions emotionally; they justify these decisions intellectually. To further understand this concept, it helps to know who is making the decisions and who is justifying the decisions. 

Too often, sales professionals make one fundamental mistake that could be costing them thousands in commissions. They believe that their job is to sell products or services to clients by explaining why their product is superior. Success in sales (and the size of your commission check), is determined not by the information you give, but rather, by the information you collect.

As a sales coach, you need to benchmark the performance of each behavior to determine whether they are performed at acceptable levels or not. It is important to utilize a scale rating behavior with a 1 to 10 performance rating. This scale will allow you develop standards not only for each individual but across your team.

As sales managers, we’re all familiar with the conversation. One of your sales reps is making the case to pursue an opportunity and you question why. “It’s a big deal” is the response, “It’s right in our power swing”. Or perhaps, with candor entering the room, “I really need to win this”. And these are all reasons, of course. But what do they really mean? What’s the real business sense for your firm in pursuing the deal? And what’s the business risk?

As the weather heats up, many companies begin to look with dread upon the impending summer slowdown. For brands unprepared for the upcoming lull, it can be a challenge to keep the company moving forward and productive during the summer months. With people in and out of the door due to vacations and time off, it can feel impossible to get anything done.

Anyone can become a salesperson. There’s no real barrier to entry and no barrier to continuing a career in sales. As with most professions, anyone can become a “subject matter expert,” but that does not automatically make that person a good salesperson.

Sandler Training released a new public and free podcast last week called, “How to Succeed.” It is an inside look at the attitudes, behavior, and techniques necessary to succeed at anything. Host, Mike Montague interviews Sandler trainers, authors, and experts about how to succeed at absolutely anything. You will learn how to get to the top and stay there!

Successful sales managers know that an environment of fear and pessimism never allows for their team’s best performance. Your attitude as a leader, mentor, coach, trainer and sales manager will greatly influence the results of your team. Salespeople who are empowered, motivated and encouraged to pursue opportunity and abundance will find ways to succeed where others never will.

If your closing rate is suffering or it’s taking longer than it should to close sales, you may be sabotaging your own efforts. Take a close look at how you interact with your prospects and make sure that each interaction adds value to the relationship, is focused on defining the opportunity, and keeps the selling process moving forward.

At Sandler Training, we believe in not solely talking about features and benefits during your sales call, but rather focusing on the prospect’s needs. However, there is a time for presenting, once you have qualified the opportunity. Once a prospect is fully qualified in Pain, Budget, and Decision, then it is time for you to make the presentation, and you want to make that presentation as persuasive as possible.

Do you think it would be possible to actually sell more and sell more easily? Could you actually spend less time, money and energy on business development and enjoy more revenue and profit? When you stop trying to sell to everyone, you can actually invest time and effort to build real ideal client relationships with qualified prospects. You can work smarter instead of harder.

As a buyer, what comes to mind when you think of the word, "Salesperson"? Usually what comes to mind are things like… used cars, polyester suits, briefcases, and flip charts or PowerPoint presentations. Many people dislike dealing with salespeople, and some even shudder at the thought of being one. Few, if any, children grow up dreaming of being salespeople, yet it is the most common profession in the world. Why is that?

Many sales managers attempt to manage their salespeople by “managing” their numbers. You can track numbers, but you can’t actually “manage” them any more than you can manage the weather. But, it is from the observation and analysis of the numbers that you can identify pathways for improved performance.

The road to a successful sales career is filled with disappointments, rejection and uncertainty. If all you have is the willingness to put up with those things then you’re 99.99% of the way there. So, what attributes does a person need to have to be successful? Here are the top 3 that I recommend you look for when interviewing someone for your business.

Sales meetings can help you win more business, but if not handled well they can cost you time in front of prospects. 

Salespeople tend to be focused, driven, and almost single-minded when it comes to closing a sale. While this attitude can bring about great results, it can also prevent a salesperson from considering alternative ways to approach the sales relationship. Does the client prefer frequent phone calls to check in, or would your sales process run more smoothly with scheduled email follow ups? Take the time to re-evaluate your sales team's focus. Try these seven tips to drive new revenue and improve your sales game.

The infamous summer sales slump may be in full swing in your business, but it's time to turn things around. By rethinking your summer sales plan, you can use a slower market to your advantage. Follow our guide to building a sales plan that withstands summer slumps and turn these notoriously slow months into productive and profitable opportunities.

They say that time heals all wounds, but in the sales industry, time kills all deals. To keep leads warm, especially during notoriously cool selling months, sales managers need to create a smooth handoff between the marketing and sales teams. Use these tips to keep leads warm and close the sale more easily.

What does a company need to be successful? Many people would say investors and a solid business plan, but in addition to these important factors, a company needs effective managers.  If your company suffers from lackluster sales, take a look at the management behind the team. You may discover that effective management makes all the difference for a successful sales force. Here are a few reasons why solid management is absolutely crucial to sustaining a great sales team

To be a great salesperson, you need to have more than charm and a positive attitude. Today's sales environment requires you to utilize advanced tools in your sales process. We dug deep into our sales tool belt to provide you with some of the most advanced and highly rated programs and apps. Try out a few of these tools if you are looking to become a stronger, more competitive salesperson in your industry.

Think you have got the perfect sales team? No matter how successful your group, every team has room for improvement. Whether your team falls flat in a specific area or they lack motivation, putting the time into improving faults helps create a more cohesive, successful sales force. Work together and follow these 5 simple rules to build a strong, effective, and eventually more profitable sales team.

All salespeople with a small amount of experience have a 30-second commercial (a.k.a elevator pitch, popcorn introduction, etc.) down pat. And that's the problem.

Although teamwork is frequently the most efficient way to complete a big project, many managers struggle to lead a cohesive team. Managing individual employees along with the broader group dynamic brings confusion to team projects, causing the work and your team management capabilities to suffer. Tackle teamwork problems before they come up with these 25 tips for becoming a more effective team manager.

Unavoidable conflicts often arise when you work on team projects. Coworker's differences can contrast sharply to your own, creating tension within the group. These differences are not necessarily a bad thing, though. Healthy constructive criticism helps create diverse methods of thinking and solutions to difficult problems.

Being a manager that is both well respected and effective in the workplace is a difficult balancing act. While it is important to keep your employees happy, you also need to ensure that their work is still producing results. The first step in managing effectively is to recognize the problems you may be inadvertently causing. Here are five common mistakes and possible solutions to keep your employees thriving in the workplace.

Salespeople are often viewed as individuals who hold themselves accountable. Accountable to getting up and out every day and pushing themselves to get to the next level.  They are most often seen as doing things that others don't want to do. They hold themselves accountable. What's the reality? It's not always that easy. Many salespeople would say (my educated guess) that holding themselves accountable is one of the toughest things they face

David Sandler said, "If you live a straight life in an unstraight world you're going to get killed." Yet salespeople get (metaphorically) killed daily by selling in a straight line. Salespeople sell in a straight line when they are attached to the outcome of their interaction with their prospect, typically closing a sale, instead of being attached to the process of (dis)qualifying

Getting the most out of LinkedIn can be a difficult endeavor. To help you succeed in building an informative and powerful profile, we have compiled a list of the 23 most important personal branding tips to use on this social networking website. Follow these helpful rules to stay relevant and create a lasting impression on LinkedIn.

The explosion of social media has created lots of new opportunities for your company when it comes to sales prospecting. Utilizing the tools available to you can expand your business and be a source of continuous lead generation. Or it can cause a very embarrassing publicity nightmare. Here are five rules you should follow to cash in on social media opportunities and become a successful sales professional:

It's a fact: most organizations need a killer sales force. Business development, marketing, must-have products or services – these are all essential to meaningful revenue growth. But your sales team is the heart of production. Your salespeople are the ones championing your offer and driving precious profit. Your team should be the best it can. Period. But how do you build a successful sales team? Buckle up, because it's no easy task. As long as you follow these seven essential steps, however, you'll have a team of sales all-stars under your belt.

Managing a team of sales reps with various motivations and egos is no easy feat. And if you're a sales manger, you know that it can be a complicated and sometimes challenging role that requires a number of management skills to be successful. At Sandler Training, we've discovered that highly effective sales managers possess a set of skills and characteristics that make them stand out from the rest. So how do some sales managers continually lead successful and goal-oriented sales teams while others repeatedly hit roadblocks and obstacles

Sales slumps happen. They are guaranteed to hit and, when they do, they put intense pressure on your team to perform. You, as a sales manager, should be prepared to lead your team out of the doldrums effectively and efficiently. We've identified 6 things exemplary sales managers do to drag teams from the muck. There's no perfect solution to sales slumps, but these techniques will help mitigate damage and keep your staff afloat through the toughest times.   Identify and address problem

A new survey from Sandler Training put the red pen in the hands of American employees, giving them chance to "grade" the performance of their manager. The results were passing, but not exactly good enough for the refrigerator.

All good things must come to an end, especially in the world of sales and staffing. Whether all-star performers are leaving for retirement reasons or new opportunities on the horizon, the thought of finding someone who will deliver the same results and fit in the culture can seem daunting. Rest assured though, it's not impossible. With some planning and putting a few processes in place, you'll be well positioned to celebrate the departing team members and welcome the new ones.

There's a popular, albeit unfounded, belief that summers are slow for business. Sandler Training disagrees, and dares to say that professionals create a self-fulfilling prophecy by telling themselves that despite great efforts, their summer will be tough. Sandler trained professionals believe that outreach and other activity might need to be increased in the summer, there's no need to succumb to the idea that you won't find new business, close deals and meet new and promising business connections. Below are five myths to dismiss this summer when it comes to your work productivity

If you've heard the any of the following statements from prospects, then keep reading to learn more about how to determine when to walk away and when to continue investing time and energy. "I need to confer with other managers here." "I need more time to decide." "Call me in about a month."

Every profession has its own lineup of myths that need busting. Those who have spent the majority of their career in a sales role have heard them all. The fact is that sales is an exciting, sometimes grueling and often rewarding profession. We're the frontline of an organization and vital to its growth. However, like it or not, many myths exist about who the "ideal" salesperson is and what a career in sales is like. The following four myths are among some of the most popular assumptions about the sales profession. Can you think of any other myths that need busting

Imagine a business is like a rock band. And every business has a drum rhythm at which it operates. The drumbeat is consistent, dependable, and stable.The most beautiful music is made when all the instruments play in harmony to the drum's rhythm. It's not always easy.

Have you ever talked yourself out of a sale? Selling is not about telling. It's about helping the prospect relate to your product or service to the satisfaction of their wants and needs. It's also about helping them discover needs of which they were previously unaware. How do you accomplish this? By asking thought-provoking questions and then listening, really listening!

Today I asked a group of salespeople to share something that they wished they'd said to a prospect when they had the chance. I explained they were in a 'safe environment' so it was okay to be honest. The comments were interesting. And when I say interesting, I mean somewhat reserved, restrained and polite.

Creating an effective sales pipeline can be a massive headache for sales leaders because reps have been known to stuff the pipeline with opportunities that have zero chance of closing. In a previous life, I took over a product specialist role selling a web-based media monitoring and crisis communications program. My first six weeks in that role was spent culling a $3 million pipeline down to $160,000 of real, qualified opportunities

Like it or not, times have changed and the usefulness of a voicemail is up for debate. With email, text messages and Caller ID, some people find it irritating to see that they have a blinking red light or a notification alerting them to check their voicemail. And as sales professionals, the last thing we're trying to do is annoy a prospect or current client.

So when did you start saying, "I'll get to that tomorrow" when it comes to your goals for 2014? January 2? January 10? Did you make it all the way to the Super Bowl before giving up? If you've fallen short of a goal already or are on pace to fall short before the end of the year, you're trapped in the procrastination triangle. What is the procrastination triangle? Draw an equal sided triangle. Label the top "no goals," the bottom left "no plan" and the bottom right "no discipline."

Thinking back to the fifth grade, I wonder how many of you dreamed of becoming a salesperson when you grew up? How many people do you think asked for sales training for Christmas this year? How many kids dressed up salespeople during Halloween? The unfortunate fact is that no one wants to be a salesperson.

I want to take you back about 10,000 years ago to the savannah in Africa. There are only about 1,500 human beings on the planet, and life is a scary existence. As far as predators go, we don't stand much of a chance. We don't have claws, or razor sharp teeth with fangs. We aren't very strong or fast, and we don't have any cool defense mechanisms like shells, venom, stingers, or even camouflage. Needless to say, it paid to be fearful on the savannah. Fear, vigilance, and worry kept us alive. Luckily for us, we got smart fast.

As a manager, executive or owner, the only valuable you possess is your time. To successfully manage your time and grow your business, ask yourself the following question daily: "Does 'it' advance my business?" ("It," being whatever activity you are doing or about to start.) Let's take a look at several examples, which might resonate with you. Activity – Understanding your direct reports' personal goals Does it advance my business? Absolutely

Prepare a digital version of your 30-Second Commercial...and include that text in your LinkedIn profile. (tweet this!)

You're meeting with a prospect. You've asked all the appropriate questions to uncover the prospect's problem, concerns, desires, goals, and expectations. After fully analyzing the situation, you announce with no hesitation whatsoever, "No problem. I have exactly what you need." Does the prospect gasp a sigh of relief, utter under his breath, "Thank goodness," and pull a purchase order from the drawer? Perhaps in Grimm's version of the story, but not in the real world. Why

I just returned from Las Vegas where I spoke to business owners in the construction industry. I admit, I do get excited about wagering, especially in Las Vegas, but I realized how I was getting suckered in when a slot machine caught my eye. It said "99% payout guaranteed," which sounded like a good thing. You essentially put in $100 and over time, you will get $99 back. When you aren't emotionally involved, it's easy to see the futility of gambling in Las Vegas. But the lights and the bells and the buzz of excitement reels you in and sure enough, in an hour, I handed over $60 to the resort.

Salespeople invest time developing their pitch, formulating questions, and preparing responses to expected questions and objections from the prospect. They rehearse, refine, and rehearse some more.

We consistently have organizations coming to us for help with hiring the right talent. Over the years we've learned some pretty important lessons around interviewing sales people. Here are three common interview pitfalls you should try to avoid. Mistake 1: Interviewing the resume

I read an article recently that slammed sales people for using the "hard sell" tactic of asking for a decision at the end of a presentation. To paraphrase David Sandler, don't make presentations without a prior commitment to make a "no" or "yes" at the end of the presentation. Two valuables a sales person possesses are information and time. Making presentations without a commitment by a prospect to make a choice between "no" and "yes" at the end is a waste of both. Now, there are two instances when asking for a decision at the end of a presentation is a hard sell tactic

Here's a quick acid test of your hiring-to-turnover ratio. How often are one of these phrases heard in your company? - I'm not a micro-manager. - I hired them to... - They know what they're supposed to do... If our business world was homogenous then those phrases would be correct because every sales job would be exactly like every other sales job. Every expense filing procedure would be exactly the same at every company and every role would have exactly the same weekly behavior expectations

People from all walks of life can be technically brilliant and do a great job if someone would "just give them the project." Many consultants become consultants because they believe they can provide a better product or service and make more money than if they stayed working for a company.  It's great to dream big and recognize your aspirations however I run into more and more of these "technically brilliant" people who look me in the face and tell me they do not sell, so why would they need sales training? This leads to an interesting discussion as to where they get their business from.

My Mom was a funny lady and during my youth, she was constantly throwing riddles at me. Some of herriddles came in pairs and the pairs typically had a point. One such pair of riddles has been a huge lesson forme as I have gone through life. Here they are. Riddle 1: What did Tarzan say when he saw the elephantscoming down the road? "Here come the elephants." Riddle 2: What did the elephants say when theysaw Tarzan coming down the road? Nothing, elephants don't talk

Two weekends ago, I got to take my youngest daughter to a 4 year-old's birthday party. I'd forgotten how elaborate some of these parties get, and this was a nice reminder. The parents of this little boy had hired an animal trainer to bring some critters and let the kids see them.

I used to be an engineer before I transferred into sales in 1988. I'm guessing you've heard jokes about engineers in sales. Accountants, contractors, PhD's, and lawyers don't have stellar reputations in sales, either. Yet these professions generally are an intelligent lot. They are quite skilled at what they do, since our daily lives may depend on their specific calculations and recommendations. Here's how I used to sell: Research the prospect and prepare a powerful presentation that applied specifically to them

Ask most salespeople to describe the purpose of each interaction with a prospect and they'll probably say something like: "close 'em" "build the relationship" "educate them" "solve their problems" All good answers, but the real purpose of every interaction with a prospect is to get to the truth. What's uncomfortable about getting the truth in an interaction with a prospect? Ask any salesperson this question and most of the time their answer will be something like "I might not get their business!"e

Have you ever given thought to how people decide to buy a product or service? Consider yourself in this analogy - do you employ any of these strategies? We believe we have a need or we determine that we have a need for a product or service. With the Internet at our fingertips we immediately do some research on whatever we are in the market for. This process may take minutes or it may take hours depending on whether you are a detail person or just want a quick overview. In addition to our Internet search, we may also ask family and friends for their recommendations.

The good and bad of relationship-based sales. The Good Relationship-based sales methods are ideal. Most of the time those relationships are the only thing protecting you from competing solely on price. In sales training, we have a saying: "All things being equal, people buy from people they like. All things being unequal, people still buy from people they like."e

In regards to your business, the expertise you have gained over the years is completely worthless... until someone gives you money for it. If you have a medical doctorate, all you really have is a bunch of student loans until you have patients, and get paid for your knowledge.

Here is the problem: 99% of people out there are already doing what they think is in their best interest. Of course, there's the 1% who hate themselves and are self-sabotaging, but for the most part, you are probably doing right now, what you think is best. But why is that a problem? Well, if you want to achieve a higher level of success or happiness, no matter your current level, you are going to run into a problem. David Sandler found three areas where people get stuck in their growth and development: Attitude Behavior Techniqu

When you get an email from a prospect with one of the following requests, what do you do? Send me a quote for.. Provide us with more information about.. We'd like a proposal.. Forward us a brochure on.. If you thought, "reply by email," you just put your prospect firmly in control of the sales process. How? The reason is found in neuro-linguistic programming (NLP)

A sales template is defined as the step by step set of interactions you want your prospect to go through because it will give you a clear competitive advantage or otherwise increase the chances of you winning the business. An efficient sale system enables you to consistently achieve a desired outcome or set of outcomes without wasting time, energy, money etc. The most effective sales templates are basic enough to accommodate for change (focused on each stage of the sales meeting).

Do you "sell to live" or "live to sell"? I have been training sales people for over 16 years and have found a common trait in the highest performers: they "live to sell". They love prospecting for new business opportunities. They love being in the role of "closer". Their sales quota is a benchmark that they regularly exceed because just hitting quota makes them "average". They don't hide from the fact that they sell by putting words like "account manager" or "territory manager" on their business cards.

Clients and prospects tell on a regular basis about how they spend 5 - 20 hours a week preparing proposals for business they are "hoping to get;" however, most of the time their efforts are unsuccessful. Why are we compelled to provide proposals when our 'gut' tells us we are wasting our time? Let's explore some of the reasons we feel inclined to provide proposals: The prospect asked for it. 'If I don't provide the proposal I definitely won't have a chance at getting the business.

Albert Einstein's definition of insanity was, "doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results." That's also the literal meaning of Sandler Rule #9, "every unsuccessful prospecting call earns compound interest." In sales, we take for granted that we will fail more often than we succeed. So on the surface David Sandler's rule about unsuccessful prospecting should give us hope that the more times we fail the closer we get to a sale. As Sandler-trained salespeople will tell you, hope is a terrible thing

Have you ever killed a sale by bringing up an irrelevant feature to your prospect? Something you, or probably your marketing department, thought you prospect should know about before they signed up? At Sandler, this is known as "painting seagulls in your prospect's picture." Unfortunately, your seagull can quickly turn into an albatross. Traditionally trained salespeople who sit through hours of product training before being let out in front of prospects can't wait to share all their product knowledge when they get in front of anyone, qualified prospect or not

Aberdeen Group developed an online assessment tool, enabling users to find out exactly what their strengths and weaknesses are in their sales training efforts.

Last time we discussed the tension of wanting to rescue a prospect sales process. Now let's look at the situation between the buyer and seller as objectively as possible:

Make a mutual decision with your prospect. Sandler trainer Danny Wood discusses Rule #16: Never ask for the order, make your prospect give up.

There are a lot of great movies that have been written about selling. In fact, Amazon lists the topten sales movies when you search the site, and, unfortunately, none of them present the sales profession is a very favorable light. Movies like Boiler Room, Used Cars, Tommy Boy, Wall Street, Tin Men and even The Godfather come to my mind when I do a quick scan. Yes, The Godfather! Who can forget the memorable sales pitch from the movie, "I'm going to make you an offer you can't refuse."

I love small businesses and their owners. I spend much of my day marveling at the great accomplishments of this hearty bunch of entrepreneurs who pursue their dream and formulate the backbone of our business society. They are the lifeblood of this country. there is a soft spot in my heart for the struggles they endure as well as the challenges they must overcome to succeed.

Let's admit it. No salesperson likes making cold calls. Prospecting is perhaps the most stressful and anxiety ridden aspect to sales. 

Spend some time in the psychology or self-help section in any bookstore and you'll find hundreds of books written on transforming troubled relationships. Whether husband/wife, parent/child, friend/friend or employer/employee, they dominate the shelves promising THE magical solution to resolving any issue imaginable. If you're in sales, what about the buyer/seller relationship? The same elements that make any relationship thrive also apply to developing and strengthening bonds with our prospects and customers

I was sitting in a coffee shop reading a book in early November when I overheard two salespeople talking about the current state of their business. One was explaining to the other that he looked forward to this time of year because all his customers were out of money and all of his prospects were going to wait until next year to purchase.

Sales isn't for the faint of heart. You don't just encounter negativity on a fairly frequent basis. In many cases, it is your job to sniff it out and address it immediately. Sandler Rule #3: "No Mutual Mystification," deals with an issue that often plagues sales professionals –  "happy ears."

You may not recall the first time you heard the word NO; however, that first time and the many times you heard it after all happened when you were a toddler. You continued to hear the word NO through your childhood years and eventually it became ingrained in your psyche.

Why should we buy from you? What makes you different than my current _______? Why should I invite you in to see me? We are already doing business with you so why should we look at this new product /service? Sound familiar? A bit tired of hearing this? Get used to it. This is simply what customers and prospects say to sales people. And we can't fault the prospect/ customer for asking the question. They don't have time to waste, and they need a good reason to spend time with salespeople who know how to sell value-whether through a meeting or to view a new product or service

"How and when you discuss money during your sales process has a greater impact on selling success than your price"

As a salesperson, your job is to go to the bank. Go to the bank as often as possible, repeat the steps that have gotten you there in the past, and lose the habits that ever slowed your progress there.

Why? Why do we get up every day and go to work? Because we have bills to pay: Really? Listen to the news-not paying your bills is now as much a status symbol as a Gold Card in the 1980's. Because that's what is expected: Really? In most companies, the last time you saw your job description was the day you interviewed-and you don't know what is really expected, do you? Because employees depend on us: Really? Management texts say a great manager implements systems that will operate well when management is not there. Really it's because Mom or Dad said so

Not everybody learns the same way, and there is no singular solution to every challenge. Dave Mattson, Sandler Training's CEO, touches on the variety of options offered with Sandler Training.

Wednesday mornings are tough enough without our most annoying client calling in with the usual simple problem that he is over-reacting to. We sigh and answer the phone - all while making the facial gestures of a person eating oysters for the first time in their life. WHY does that client seem to be determined to drive you insane? It's your fault ... Every morning the manager from the operations department stops in to tell you how your team messed up his operations this weekend. She is soooo abrasive. You answer in abrupt sentences and quite rudely push her out the door

What do all of the world's greatest athletes, politicians and business leaders have in common? They didn't get to be the best on their own. They all had guidance from coaches and mentors, and that guidance is what brought out their endless potential in their field.

Sandler's CEO, Dave Mattson, explains how someone comes to figure out their recipe for success. After countless trials and experimentation, you have to take the time to sit down and analyze what strategies have worked for you, and what strategies could use some more work. 

What do you really learn by getting a "yes"? Job well done. Keep doing what you're doing. Get comfortable. Right? That's all fine, but realize that while your "yes" may make you happy, it doesn't necessarily make you a better salesperson.

As a salesperson, your objective is to get your prospect to make a decision. Obviously, a "yes, I will work with you" is better than a "no, thanks." But even getting to that decision can be a chore for some. 

After any amount of time in dealing with salespeople, you're bound to come across some overzealous characters — those people who treat a prospect more like a rabid predator than a professional. Nobody wants to deal with a salesperson who is obviously waiting to pounce, so you do the only thing you can do to shake them off the scent of a sale — you lie.

Acronyms, industry buzz-words, technical jargon — we've all used them at one point or another in our jobs. But if you've been using them when you're first getting to know your prospect, you may have made a big mistake.

The prospect said no. That's the end of the sales process, and you've somewhat succeeded in a sense that you at least got an answer. It's not a "yes," but your job is technically done now, right? According to Sandler Rule #39, you should think again.

That's a headline straight out of sales training boot camp, but it's true. There is a question most people want answered when they go to a sales training program or read one of the many sales how-to books; that question sounds like this, "Is there really one secret weapon or magic formula to make me better and increase my sales?" Wouldn't it be wonderful to find one ... so would winning the lottery, but not many do it

In sales, there's a big difference between knowing what to say and knowing what to think. Sandler Training CEO Dave Mattson explains the seven deadly sales sins to avoid now and forever. 

It may be in the salesperson's best interest to stop talking from time to time. Share your product expertise after you've qualified the prospect. 

Practice makes perfect. Just like pro golfers, sales experts can't expect to improve without putting in rounds. Listen as Sandler CEO Dave Mattson explains the similarities between Sandler trainers and pro golfers.

What does a marathon runner know about making prospecting calls? Probably very little. Maybe nothing! However, the strategy the marathon runner uses to prepare for a race can help you become a better prospector. No runner started out as a marathon runner. They trained over time to build their strength and endurance to go the distance. The first day they couldn't run 100 yards before gasping for breath. The first week was torture. The second week was a little better. The third week better yet, and so on. With continual practice, desire and effort, they became a marathon runner

Countless people go through sales training seminars every year only to emerge with slick tricks, a few doses of confidence and a belief that they'll be able to bully any prospect they meet into signing on the dotted line. While this may do just fine for the quick, lucky payday, it is not a system that builds long-term, profitable relationships.

Wouldn't it be wonderful for a prospect to accurately and honestly lay out all of their issues for you in your first meeting? This means no more seemingly-perfect deals to disappear, no more "perfect matches" to end with unreciprocated phone calls, and best of all, no more "What went wrong?"

Over the last eight years I have done hundreds of one-on-one performance coaching sessions with salespeople, and the single most frequent question I hear is, "How do I get better?" It's a meaningful question and almost always asked with a genuineness that signifies the person speaking really wants help. I usually respond to that question with a question of my own that goes like this, "Do you really want to know?" You see, at these moments I'm always reminded of a statement by Dr. Lee Thayer, "Most people prefer the problem they have to a solution they don't like."e

Through any sales training seminar you may have attended or any job training you've experienced, people seem to put a lot of energy into teaching you how to avoid or resist one word: "No." The fear of rejection alone is enough to drive the timid and easily — bruised away from sales altogether.

If you simply differentiate yourself as saying you're "the best" sales professional out there, then you can look forward to clients and prospects who will wander around to see if one of the millions of other "bests" out there are cheaper. This rule is simple. See what your competition does, and then make sure that what you do is incomparable. Having a unique game plan will help set you on the path to one-of-a-kind success.

Sure, it's easy to externalize your problems if things aren't going well. Remember: as a salesperson, it's your job to sweep those excuses aside. You'll never grow as a sales professional if you leave every call thinking you're just unlucky to run into the world's pickiest prospects.

No, we're not advocating neglect. Just understand that the salesperson should be looking for neither approval nor acceptance from his or her prospect. Learn how you can leave your emotions out of the equation.

To really sell, you've got to step out onto that stage, choose the right performance for the right audience and be prepared to analyze their reactions. Do everything right, and you may just get asked for an encore.

Sandler Training's Karl Scheible explains Sandler Rule #46: "There Is No Such Thing as a Good Try." At best, "try" indicates intention, but not commitment. If the outcome of an action is important, don't "try." Commit to it.

Watch a Sandler trainer Kevin Hallenbeck explains why it is absolutely necessary to always keep your options open. 

I've spent a lot of time considering why the occupation of selling has been given such a low approval rating over the past 40 years. It wasn't always that way. Here's a story that got me thinking about this again. A cowboy named Bud was overseeing his herd in a remote mountainous pasture in California when suddenly a brand-new BMW advanced out of a dust cloud towards him

I propose a ban on proposals! I find them to be an enormous waste of time as no one has ever in the history of sales purchased anything solely based on the proposal. We unwittingly taught all prospects that they simply have to ask and we will provide them with all the information they need in order to deal with their problem

Many salespeople bail out long before they get thrown out. Do you ever wonder why so many salespeople leave a sales opportunity too early?

How's your memory? Do you fall into the category as described the old adage, "I'd forget my head if it wasn't connected to my body"? Are you constantly setting traps for yourself to be on time for meetings or where your car keys are placed or what's supposed to be happening on your schedule from hour to hour?

Recently I was working with a company's executive team in reviewing the progress we had made together in solving a longstanding, difficult problem that had stunted their growth for years and slowed their momentum. It was rewarding to see their excitement as we reviewed the results of our efforts together. It was a good team meeting and an encouraging feeling to share our successes. I should have left well enough alone, yet I recognized that the true learning and best growth had not gone far enough. I posed three follow-up questions:

I don't like emails! Thought I'd get that out on the front end so there's no mystery as to where I am heading. Now you're wondering what in the world has happened. What did he do wrong? What caused such a negative reaction to something as simple, routine and harmless as email

As a salesperson, I seem to take quite a few lessons from movies and some of the best lessons are in some of the worst movies. Most people think Burt Reynolds played only tough guy roles and the occasional slapstick comedy role. But one of the best sales lessons I have ever learned was from the movie "The End." If you have not seen "The End," do not rush out to rent it. I am about to spoil the plot for you. This is kind of a cute movie starring Dom DeLuise and Burt Reynolds.

Growing up, I was raised by an optimist and a pessimist. My mom was probably the happiest, funniest, friendliest person you could ever meet. She made sure that I was raised with an altruistic mindset, wishing nothing but good for everybody and doing my best to help people out. As I started to learn and mature, I asked her about why she was helping some people she really did not like. Her response was simple. "Matt, everybody can be better off and helping them helps the community.

Twenty years ago, when I was a young salesperson just starting out, I was fortunate enough to get sent to quite a bit of sales training. All of the training programs seemed to center around the "Three Big Steps to Selling." The "Three Big Steps to Selling" are: 1) Prospecting 2) Presenting 3) Closin

With the great economic storm over the last year, many businesses wisely pulled back into safe harbors for a period of time. In fact, those that failed to make adjustments and continued their course were likely wiped out or at least seriously damaged. Unwise use of credit and perhaps a bit of bad luck has taken its toll on many. However, perhaps you are one of those businesses that made the proper course corrections by making the difficult and sometime painful choices.

Salespeople are not wise to the ways of great sorcerers and for that we can all be thankful. Sorcerers are known for exotic blends, flash powder, potent broths and a willingness to pluck the eyes out of living things. Sorcerers spend an inordinate amount of time consulting the bones, looking to see what the future holds - which usually ends up about half-right. There's every reason to believe that consulting those dried up old bones might be about as successful as the "winging it" strategy employed by many sales amateurs.

There are a lot of good reasons to pick up the phone and reach out to new prospective customers. When it comes to finding new business opportunities, the phone offers a high level of efficiency, is relatively inexpensive, and is a great way to gather valuable information that can help us find business.

Whoever said talk is cheap didn't know much about sales. Talk-too much talk, that is-can cost a lot. This is a difficult lesson for many sales professionals to learn, and that's understandable. People in sales tend to have outgoing personalities. They enjoy good conversation, and the longer they are in sales, the better they get at making small talk, establishing an emotional connection with the prospect, and driving a conversation toward the specific end of closing a sale

I don't know about you, but I have never liked being told what to do. I don't think I've ever met anybody who did respond well to that kind of instruction, even when the person in charge-a coach at sports, for example-clearly knew what he was doing if the message is delivered wrong. It doesn't matter if what you are saying is true, if it's not delivered properly. You can be the authority, but no one cares if you can't deliver your message in a way that others can accept. The fact that you have good prudent knowledge, the fact that you're correct, doesn't matter if not delivered properly.

Small business owners tend to stay small because they do not install systems and processes into their business. Most owners want to hire "experienced" sales people. The mentality is to hire someone, teach them about their products and services, then expect the person to "go sell". What's the problem? If we hire experienced sales people, once they learn the product or service, they should be good to go, right?

While some salespeople might see voicemail as a dead end or a link in a long game of phone tag, opportunists see it as a chance to learn even more about the prospect before interacting with them. If you listen closely to a prospect's outbound voicemail message, you can pick up clues to help you adjust your style to be more like theirs

If you're like most sales professionals, you work hard to learn as much as you can about your product or service. You take pride in how much you know about your business. When you can answer any technical question that might come up in a call with a prospect, you feel confident. That's only natural. But as important as it is to be knowledgeable, your eagerness to display that knowledge can damage a relationship and cost you sales. To avoid this problem, you need to remember that expertise can be intimidating. It can turn people off

I'm going to let you in on a secret. There are hundreds of consultants out there that will tell you they fully understand Twitter and other trendy "social media" tools. They will also tell you exactly how they can help you use these tools-at a steep price, of course. Well, most of them are blowing smoke. The fact is, we live in a time of rapid technological change and a great deal of confusion. Nobody knows what tomorrow may bring, in terms of technological change, but also in terms of the economy and foreign affairs

The rotten economy, if you haven't noticed, may be taking a toll on your health. "Today's economy is stressing people out, and stress has been linked to a number of illnesses-such as heart disease, high blood pressure and increased risk for cancer," according to a new study in the July 15 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology. A lot of this stress is understandable-but also unnecessary. If you are in sales, a sales system can help you reduce that pressure you are under in a big way. You will be as productive as ever, which should mean less anxiety