Episode #081: Keep It Simple in Sales with Andy Paul

In This Episode of The Buyer’s Mind with Jeff Shore:

Andy Paul, of the Accelerator podcast, joins Jeff to talk about the simplicity of sales.  That doesn’t mean that selling is easy but the principle of one person talking to another person and having the solution to meet a need, remains the same.  While tools and techniques may change, the basics remain the same. Be the best version of yourself and change someone’s world.

Topics we’re going to cover on today’s podcast:

[1:29] Easy equals right

[4:01] Easing cognitive strain

[7:00] How sales has changed over time

[12:39] Is it about quantity or quality?

[21:27] Calm confidence offers trust to your customer

[27:38] The Sales House

More about our guest Andy Paul:

I almost didn’t make it past the sales training class in my first job out of college. The bosses didn’t think I’d make it in sales because I wasn’t “salesy” enough. They thought I was too introverted and analytical.

And yet, over three decades I have built a successful career as an author, sales leader, speaker and consultant by being different, thinking differently and selling differently.

I’ve helped boost the performance of teams selling products and services as diverse as complex multi-million dollar communications networks to collectible professional sports memorabilia. I’ve worked with raw technology start-ups and Fortune 1000 companies and everything in between. I’ve worked with nearly every channel ranging from franchise networks to retailers, dealers, distributors, VAR and OEMs. And, I’ve sold in nearly every corner of the globe.

Now I am doing what I love best – sharing my unique insights about sales strategies and building successful sales teams with companies, business owners, executives and sales professionals to help them reach their goals. I can help you transform the performance of your sales team, too.

Links from today’s podcast:

Homestreet Bank

Andy Paul

Accelerate Podcast

The Sales House


John’s Crazy Socks

Read Full Transcript

Jeff: Well as always a shout out to our sponsor of the podcast Home Street Bank. If you’re looking for a bank that is gonna give you everything you need, great people, tremendous service, really great rates, this is where you wanna go. This is my lender. This is my lender of choice, I think it should be yours as well. Go to homestreetbank.com for everything you need both business and personal, that’s homestreetbank.com. Sales, is it rocket science, or is it much simpler than that? Let’s talk about it today on “The Buyer’s Mind.”

Recorded voice: Welcome to “The Buyer’s Mind,” where we take a closer look deep inside your customer’s decision-making mechanism to reverse engineer the perfect sales presentation. Now, please, welcome your host Jeff Shore.

Jeff: Well, welcome everyone once again to another episode of “The Buyer’s Mind,” where we bring on really smart people who help us to understand what is your customer thinking about, what’s going on in their brain, and how do we learn to communicate with them in such a way that we can make it easy for them to buy. And one of the things that we know about customers is that we make decisions when our brain is at ease, so much easier. When our brain is all wrapped around the axle, when our brain is all confused, we’ve gotta understand this concept that a confused mind says no.

And we’ve talked about this many times in the past as I’m welcomed by our show producer Paul Murphy. Murphy, we have a saying about this, about easy, and what easy, means. What does easy means, Murf?

Murf: Easy equals right.

Jeff: Yeah, easy equals right, and we see that happen over and over again. And I know that we have chatted about it here on this podcast, where we’re constantly looking for the easiest way to do things. And I think great companies are figuring this out, they’re looking for ways to make things simple. So as a couple of examples, Murf, have you ever done any business with Zappos by chance?

Murf: I have not, but I have called their line to hear the jokes.

Jeff: There you go. Well, here’s the way it works, this is what Murf is talking about, is like normally, you know, when you call a company, and you have to go through all of these different menus to be able to finally talk to somebody, only to find out you’re talking to the wrong person. Not so with Zappos. In fact, listen, I’m just gonna hold my phone up to the microphone and see how it works when you’re calling Zappos.

Recorded voice: Thanks for allowing our customer loyalty team to put a little Zappos in your day. For quality assurance, this call may be monitored or recorded. We’ll be getting you to a team member shortly. In the meantime, if you’d like to hear the joke of the day, please press five. Thanks and have a great day.

Jeff: Let’s do it.

Recorded voice:

Jessica: Hi, I’m Jessica, from the wowing customer circle, and here is the joke of the day. Can February March? No, but April May.

Jeff: Okay, that was a really, really bad joke, but you get the point, right? If you’re gonna be on the phone anyway waiting for it to be cued up, let’s make it a little fun, huh, shall we? Let’s just do it. This is what companies are figuring out, this does not have to be rocket science. And when we simplify it, we make it easy for people to buy things. Another great example of that and I’ve mentioned this on the website before, but I would encourage you if you’re sitting in front of your computer right now.. go to johnscrazysocks.com, John’s Crazy Socks.

Now I have a subscription in John’s Crazy Socks, I have a subscription because it was purchased for me, it was a gift. But the thing that’s great about going to the website is that right on the website, right on the front page, you have two choices, hear our story, buy socks that’s it. Because easy equals right, simple equals right. There’s only two choices. Yu can read the… by the way, incredible story about John’s Crazy Socks or you can buy socks, that’s it, they make it easy for people to buy, and that’s the idea. Simple isn’t about simple-minded, it’s about lessening cognitive strain. Simple is about making it easy for customers to do what they wanna do anyway. Simple as in, simple is welcome, simple is painless, simple is right.

And I wanna just say to you, if you’re a salesperson right now, simplify everything. Simplify everything.I’ll give you an example if somebody is asking the question, “Why you? Why should I buy from you versus any of your competitors?” Well, how easy is your answer? Because if you immediately start to look at it and say, “Well, we started business in 1972, and we started our X, dah-dah-dah-dah.” If you’re using that opportunity to give the story of your company, that’s not what the customer was asking. Simplify it, how do you answer that in one sentence?

If I looked at it then and said to that customer, “I’ll tell you why you should do business with us, because by the time you’re done with this transaction, that’s the only thing that matters how you feel after you have purchased our product or service. So let me give you three reasons why you will feel best when you buy from us.” So what have I done? I’ve given a long-term promise that the only thing that matters is how you feel when you’re done, which is true, and now I’ve told them I’m gonna give you three quick reasons why we can accomplish that better than anybody else.

That’s an example of taking something and simplifying it into a big overview statement, and then three very quick data points that are gonna follow it up. That’s the type of thing a customer can get their mind around, that’s the type of thing a customer will look at it and say, “That’s easy for me to understand. I get that.” And as we start thinking this through, one of the things that we recognize is that with the institution of a lot of technology for salespeople, that technology sometimes makes it difficult for us to keep it simple.

And in our show today, we’re gonna look at that, we’re gonna try and figure out what is getting in the way of simplicity, and how we can go back to making it easy for our customer to do what they already want to do. They wanna buy? Let’s make it easy for them. It’s my great pleasure to welcome back to “The Buyer’s Mind” Andy Paul. Andy and I have been just really enjoying getting to know each other over the years. And there are people that you work with in your professional life where you look and you go, “Okay, I can talk to this person, we can encourage one another, we can challenge, one another, we’re not gonna agree on everything, but over time, we’re better people for it.” And then you also find out, “Wow, this is a really, really good guy.” So I’m really thrilled to call him a friend. Please welcome to “The Buyer’s Mind” Andy Paul. Andy, how are you doing sir?

Andy: Jeff, I’m doing very well. Thank you, and thank you, for that nice introduction, that says a lot.

Jeff: Well, you’ve got a lot going on in between the years for sure, so it’s always a challenge. Every time I hang up the phone with you I’m feeling like, “Okay, I gotta get my act together here.” Andy, you have been in the sales business for a long, long time, you’ve seen a lot of things come and go and a lot of change. And, you know, people always talk about the world is always changing, of course, it is. Technology is always changing and of course, it is, but let’s just dive right in here. In your opinion has selling changed? And has it changed to the degree that technology has changed the world itself?

Andy: No, in 24 plus. All right, next question. No, I don’t think it has, and I think that despite all the buzzwords and technology that’s flooded into sales, that selling itself really hasn’t changed that much. I mean if you’re trying to be effective in selling certain in the business to business space, or in B2C in certain markets, your high end, like real estate I know that you’re very familiar with, it’s still about what happens in that moment when one person talks to another person. You know, it ultimately boils down to that.

And if you’re a product that’s purely transactional and people buy it online, well, that’s different. But in the cases where people are still involved, and I think for foreseeable future that’s gonna be the case certainly within our lifetimes. But it’s that it still boils down to, “How can I make a connection with this other person to engage their interest, to build trust, and to inspire them to take some action?”

Jeff: Yeah, I think if you replayed a sales presentation from the 1960s or 1970s I guess it would change in the sense that every salesperson was presumably male, at least if you watch the old shows, or actually if you read some of the old books too. When you read Peter Drucker’s “The Effective Executive,” when was that written 1968 or something, is a great book, and it’s held up well as long as you have a tolerance for the idea that every single salesperson was male.

But beyond that, when you look at the sales presentation back decades ago, and you broke it down to its component parts, it probably would not look that different. Some of the language would have changed, some of the cultural stylings of the voice patterns might have changed, but the prices itself probably didn’t change all that much.

Andy: Well, yeah, and I think on the flip side though it’s the things that were still done incorrectly then, are still done incorrectly now. And so this idea, you know, that it’s still about the people, yeah, I don’t think we’re really that good at it even back then. This whole idea about, you know, showing up and throwing up and just talking more than you listen, all these lessons we’re trying to teach people today, the same lessons we were trying to teach people 40 years ago. I find this sort of interesting that there hasn’t been sort of this… maybe it’s just because, you know, we’re all humans at heart, is that there hasn’t been the sort of evolution about, oh, yeah, there are certain ingrained knowledge about you know, what the basics should be, in terms of buildings relationships and so on. Yeah, it’s like we’re recreating the wheel every time a new cohort comes into sales.

Jeff: True, yeah, and I completely agree with you that the things that we’re doing wrong today, we were doing wrong back then. And you sort of picture in your mind that over the aggressive salesperson who is just jamming down their list of all the reasons that their product is so incredibly powerful and meaningful for the customer, without really taking the time to… those are sort of things that a good salesperson would have done back then, would have stayed away from then, they’ll stay away from now, maybe that hasn’t changed all that much.

The technology that we’re introducing over the last 10 years in the sales process, you know, it can be helpful, but it can be complicated and with negative impacts on the sale at the same time. So now we’re asking salespeople to work with at times a very, very complex CRMs, and systems and processes that can really have negative impacts on the sale. Give us some examples of what that might look like. What are some of the things that you see today where we’re getting in our own way?

Andy: Well, the technology enables more, right? And so, you know, I can send more emails, I can make more calls. And the pressure then comes from managers to the reps to say, “Look, it’s really all about quantity versus the quality of what you’re doing these days, and we have the technology that enables quantity so let’s do that.” As a result what happens is we accept a level of performance that’s pretty low because we’re gonna make it up in quantity.

And so, you know, hey, I’ll accept a 20% close rate because we’ve got the ability now to harvest so many you know, “leads,” and put them into our funnel, and we’re just gonna slash and burn through many of them because, you know, it’s not appropriate, and I can get down to those few that I can sell. So there’s a brute force approach to selling is really what we’re sort of seeing in some markets enabled by the technology. And so there’s no emphasis really put on this person to person aspect of selling, the human aspect of selling, it’s just, man, let’s just see if we can do more, and we’re just gonna make it purely a numbers game.

And I argue that’s not sustainable, there’s very few markets where that’s sustainable, or they’re sort of an infinite number of, you know, “potential leads” that you can put into your funnel. At some point, you gotta get back to quality.

Jeff: Okay, now here’s the flipside to that, I am not gonna disagree at all, that it does create something of a problem. In the sense that now you could be encouraging a salesperson to say, “Okay, well, what I’m gonna do is I’m gonna focus on quality, which means I’m gonna really, really take a lot more time with a lot fewer people, and I’m really gonna invest in that relationship.” And whilel I’m not gonna argue that investing in a relationship is ever a bad thing, it could cause us to say, “I’m gonna build a relationship, but it may not get me anywhere.” I mean there is a quantity side to what it is that we do in sales that we have to have in order to be effective, otherwise I’m gonna have a limited number of great relationships but a low number of overall sales.

Andy: Right, but I think that’s what the great salespeople do, you know, is they find that balance between quantity and quality. I mean look at my own career, I was not conventional in the way I approached sales by any manner, and, you know, my first job, I went to my first training class, they thought I should be fired because I was “too analytical.” So I just had a different outlook on life, so I always operate with fewer prospects in my pipeline, but I closed a much higher fraction of them. To me that didn’t seem risky because, you know, I invested the time to build the relationships, and to really qualify the prospects to make sure they want to buy what I was selling. And so that wasn’t a risk, but it didn’t fit what everybody else was doing necessarily but I think that…

Jeff: Right, because many companies are gonna look at it and say, “You are going to make these many calls, you’re gonna have these many contacts, you’re gonna send…”

Andy: Exactly.

Jeff: “…this many…” It’s all a quota system, it’s just a quota of activity rather than a quota of overall sense.

Andy: Right, but I think one of things that we’re missing in sales, and this is where I think one of the negative impacts of technology, is that since there is a… it becomes more about compliance, right? When you have this ability to do more, the process becomes less about as I said quality and more about quantity, and there’s a certain… you know, there’s pressure to comply to the processes that are dictated by the technology. And so what happens is we’re not putting enough emphasis on how do we develop the individual in sales, right? How does somebody have the… give somebody the freedom to develop their own strengths and their own skills and, you know, I don’t see that as much.

And people say, “Look, that’s very risky for the sales rep. How can they stand up to the pressure?” And it’s like, well, if you look at all the great sellers, and the ones in my experience, and this was true of myself as well, the common thing they had is they were all rule breakers. You know, they did push back against the process, they did take the risk to develop, and they had mentors that were encouraging them to do it. And I see an absence of this mentorship these days, that says, “Yeah, I’m gonna really develop this person. It’s not just about the process, it’s not just about the organization, it’s not just about, you know, the mechanics of selling, it’s about how do I make this person the best version of themselves possible? And if I do that throughout my team, we were gonna crush it.”

Jeff: You know, it’s funny, over the years as I’ve coached salespeople, as I’ve managed salespeople, I’ve found that there is a common trait in great salespeople, and that is that they’re control freaks, right? They look at it and they say, “I know the way that I wanna do business, and that I can be effective doing business.” When I was a manager working for a big corporation, it was problematic for me, and I’m wondering if you have any advice for sales managers along these lines, where you’ve got… you know, this is the way I look at it now, this is how I coach managers now.

Because they’ll say, “I’ve got this super high maintenance salesperson out here who’s always sort of going their own path.” I look at it now and I say, “Hey, listen, if you were looking for a racehorse to win you a Kentucky Derby, I’m gonna tell you right now that’s gonna be a lot of work. Now if you wanna nag to stand in the field and keep your grass low, very, very low maintenance, but they’re not gonna win any races. You want a racehorse, you better be prepared that that’s gonna come along with some maintenance, but at the end of the day, it will absolutely be worth it.” What advice do you have for managers who are working with those types who wanna color outside the lines? They are the rule breakers as you call them.

Andy: Let them, right? Encourage them. Mentor them. You know, I wrote today in a piece that I sent out to my listeners is that we need to start incorporating a new category into management responsibilities. Because, well, we talk a lot about coaching, but unfortunately coaching has really devolved into this idea of game planning opportunities, strategizing opportunities, and the mechanics of sales, right? Do this, say this at this time and so on. And what’s missing is how we’re developing these individuals and so I call that mentorship.

So you got managing, you manage your process, your organization, you coach the mechanics and the opportunities, but you mentor people. Because I think the way people become great is to become the best version of themselves possible, you’ve gotta give them some freedom to do that, and that takes more work. Absolutely as a manager, it takes more work, you’ve gotta get to know that person, you’ve gotta give them a… help them develop a path to success. But, you know, if they… I think back to my own career is I was sort of notorious for not going along a lot all the times with managers and their suggestions, because I’d say to them, I said interesting suggestion, “I don’t really agree with it because I could go execute that, and if I fail, you’re gonna fire me, but you’re gonna be safe, you as a manager, right?”

So this is my job, you know, I’m gonna do it the way I see it best. You know, and I became more confident, that is I had more experience obviously. But I had one manager who once said to me finally, he sort of got fed up and he said, “Don’t you ever just say yes, to anything?” And my answer was no, because… but we need more of that in our salespeople these days. To say, “Look, this is my business I’m running as a sales rep. This territory, these account base, this is my business it’s not that I don’t respect what you have to tell me as a manager, but I’m gonna take that into consideration in the decisions I make, but I’m gonna run this the way I think best aligns with my capabilities, and my goals, and where I wanna go.”

Jeff: When we look at this from the perspective of the customer, right, we’re talking here about how we keep things simple on the sales leadership side, but what about on the customer side? It’s very easy for us to follow our own systems to the extent that the customer might be the victim by the time we’re done. And yet I think you and I agree with the idea that customers are much more likely to buy when things are simple, when they understand…

Andy: Yes.

Jeff: … things in simple ways. Sometimes I think our complexity is really making the customer something of a victim.

Andy: Customer doesn’t care about our process, right, they just don’t care. And, you know, sales organizations go to this great trouble and map out these great, you know, detailed linear processes with multiple stages and exit criteria from one stage to the next yadda, yadda, yadda. And it doesn’t map at all to how the customers buy. And what ultimately becomes important to the customer, and research has shown this, is the person they’re dealing with, you know, the sales representative from the company more than anything.

So that I think, if the rep can take the responsibility, as you said, to keep things simple in the mind of the customer, is you know, when they interact with them, are they helping the customer? Every time they interact, are they helping the customer make some progress in their decision making? That to me is keeping it simple, right? So you have to really focus so that every time you’re interacting with that prospect, what’s the value you’re gonna deliver that can help them make progress in the decision making, and what’s the customer gonna do as a result of receiving that value? And if you can keep… that to me that’s very simple, if you can keep that focus in mind as a rep. So yeah, every time I interact with a prospect, I have to accomplish these two things.

The buyer appreciates that as well. You know, you start creating their expectations that when you interact with them, there’s gonna be something in it for them, and it’s gonna help them get their job done.

Jeff: But there’s that strategic… I’m certainly not gonna disagree with that, there’s that strategic look at it to say, “What am I trying to accomplish here? How am I trying to make it easy for the customer to buy?” But then there’s also that sense that people find it easier to buy when the salesperson himself or herself carries that sort of calm confidence. In other words, there’s a simplicity of emotion, there’s a simplicity of vibe, if you will, that gets transferred, that gets connected, between a salesperson and a customer. Is that something that great salespeople do innately? Or is that something that can be developed?

Andy: Well, I think it can be developed. I mean to me, what you’re already describing is trust, right, I mean that element of calm on the part of the customer, comes from the fact that they’ve developed this trust in the seller. That this is somebody that can be trusted, they would give me good advice, that has my interests at heart, you know, their motivations are transparent, you know, their actions align with their words.

And I created this acronym for trust building and its MICE, M-I-C-E. And M is for, you know, are your motivations transparent to the buyer? I is do you have integrity? Meaning, do your actions align with your words? C, are you competent? And E, are you executing? Are you living up to the promises you made? You know, as a seller, if you can do that, then you’ve created that vibe as you talked about, that connection, where there’s real trust that’s invested in you as a seller, and that does simplify things going forward.

Jeff: The simplification that is gonna lead to that trust, part of that is in regards to how I carry myself as a salesperson, how my calm confidence is contagious, or part of it is that the way that I structure how I’m gonna talk to a customer in the first place, just in even small little ways. So if I looked at it and said for example, you know, “May I ask you some questions?” Just that question could cause a customer to look at it and go, “Well, why, and how many, and how long will this take, and what’s in it for me?”

But if I change that a little bit to say, “Listen, I wanna make sure I’m pointing you in the right direction, so can I ask you just a few quick questions?” Even that little tweak right there to say, “This is for you, it’s not for me,” it’s not gonna take very long. So part of this is just to try and figure out how do I get that simplicity built into my language, so that a customer can adopt that sense of this isn’t scary, this isn’t gonna be a root canal of a buying process there?

Andy: Yeah, and I would extend that because I’m a huge believer in questions as a form of communication, and not only in terms of receiving information, but also as a way of communicating information. And so to me, is, you know, I often just go and just… I can start with a simple question with a buyer, something on a personal level, right? And, you know, I wrote something about this recently, this is, you know, the best first question to ask when you first interact with a buyer.

And there’s been some research done on it, and it actually says, you know, the best first question is, “Where are you from?” Or I’m very into that right, is just says, “Sir, open the door. Where are you from? What’s your background?” so on. But I think beyond that is what questions do, if you’re not… it’s not an interrogation but a conversation that you’re guiding, you sort of think about it that way. Interrogation becomes, “I’ve got my list of questions I need to get answers for each of them.” As opposed to saying, “Yeah, I’ve got questions that I want answers to, but I’m just gonna have a conversation with the buyer and see where it goes, and I’m sure the opportunity will come up to be able to ask some of these questions, I’m not gonna force it.” And so we see some people force asking the questions then the defenses go up, right? Because then you’re saying like, “Yeah, it’s all questions, questions, questions, and there’s no interaction.”

Jeff: Yeah, you know, it’s interesting because the thing that I love about a question like, “Where are you from?” is that it’s an easy answer. Where oftentimes I think we start the presentation by asking questions that are actually difficult to answer. But everybody knows where they’re from, that’s not a difficult question to answer, right? So, you know…

Andy: And it goes one of two ways, too, it either goes to sort of a personal answer, “Well, I’m from Madison Wisconsin,” or, “Yeah, I’m from… you know, I worked for this company before coming here.” And so you get two paths you can go through.

Jeff: Yeah, so when I’m dealing with salespeople who are in the B2C space in a retail environment, or something like that, where they say, “So, how can I help you today?” That’s not an easy question to answer for a customer, or, “What brought you in today?” That’s not an easy question for a customer to answer. But if I start by saying, “So, you know, so you’re doing some car shopping. Are you enjoying that? Are you having fun with that process? I’m just curious.” You know, something that makes you sound just at least slightly more human and slightly less than every other salesperson.

And that’s one of the reasons why I encourage salespeople go study other sales presentations, and if you hear a sales presentation where you just wanna just throw up in your mouth a little bit, I would stay away from that. I would stay away. Maybe it’s just me, but I would stay away from that.

Andy: That’s an image that’s pretty hard to shake now as I listen to sales presentations. But it is true though, right, is we learn through various means, right? We learn through some formal learning, you know, could be listen to a podcast, reading an article, or it could be watching somebody and going along with it. And you’re new in sales, or if you’re more experienced, but you feel like you’re a little stuck, yeah, go and ride along with someone, or you know, listen to somebody make a call, participate in it, see what somebody else is doing, get some fresh ideas and, you know, blend those with your own.

Jeff: Let’s talk about The Sales House, I’m very excited about this, you and I have been talking about this for a while as I see what you have been doing. And for those of you who are sitting at your desk and listening right now, hop onto thesaleshouse.com during this conversation. I know that you and I share this issue that oftentimes when we see sales leaders who essentially abdicate the development of their own people, and they do it by saying, “Well, we’ve got sales training. You attend the sales training class and therefore your development… I can check that box and it’s done.”

Andy: That box.

Jeff: And as you and I both know that is not the way that this works. And that the reality is that salespeople who sit around and wait for their organization to provide all of their own development is probably not gonna be the most effective and personalized way for them to grow. And so that for you, said that I’m gonna build The Sales House, tell us about what The Sales House is, and why you wanted to do this in the first place.

Andy: Well, it’s really based on what you just said, is it comes from… well, in two areas. One is when I looked at how I learned over the years, about sales is it was by being exceedingly curious about everything, right? It’s about every aspect whether it was asking questions, presentations, building trust, how to connect with another person, I just felt like I could never learn enough about it any time. And yeah, I was getting the obligatory once a year sales training from the companies, though that was early in my career but later on working for startups and so on, we never had sales training, right?

So to continue to grow, I had to educate myself, and I came to the realization as I continued to work with companies as a consultant that as much as I think companies should be investing more and formally developing the individuals or firm, you know, I’m gonna continue to try to make that happen, but realistically people have to take responsibility for themselves. And I think that the resources to do that in my mind just weren’t available. So yeah, you could go spend, you know, $1,000 on a class here, and, you know, as we know from the research about training, is that you can take a class and within days you’ve forgotten most of what you’ve learned.

And so I thought, “Well, there had to be a better way for people to get educated and get smarter about sales.” And so we created The Sales House with a goal of saying, “Look, here is a place you can come, you can invest 10 minutes a day, you know, if you that’s all you have, 10 minutes a day and just make yourself just a little bit smarter about sales.” You know, we’ve got hundreds of hours of content, and courses about almost anything you can imagine about selling and, you know, find out the area where you’re interested in, or perhaps you think, “Gosh, I need to learn a bit more about this, I need to get a little bit smarter.” Come spend 10 minutes.

And if you can sort of commit to saying, “Look, I’m just gonna try to get just a little bit smarter every day,” it’s like compounding interest, right? After a year, you’re gonna be a lot smarter about sales than you were a year ago. Then you do this year after year after year, your capabilities are gonna grow exponentially. And to me, this curiosity, this drive, to learn is really what separates people that have been consistently successful throughout their careers, versus those that haven’t achieved the level of success that they wanted. And so we just wanted to be a, you know, a day to day resource for people to come and get smart about sales.

Jeff: Yeah, I love it, and you priced it right, it’s very affordable, and it’s not about that one-time event-based training, it’s really about long-term transformation. It’s the compound effect, right. It’s the little investment, the habit of self-improvement, of intentionally self-driven, self-improvement day after day after day, that makes all the difference in the world. I think we can just scrap this myth that there is there’s this miracle cure in the form of, you know, going to listen to some all-powerful, and all-mighty trainer, and thinking you’re gonna get long-term behavioral change.

Andy: Yeah, that you’re gonna 10X your sales. And we all know who that is, and the fact is, you know, that maybe has a certain appeal to certain people but it’s not really, right, that’s not how we improve. And before we 10X, we need to build a 1X, and before the 1X, we need to get 1% better. And if we’re just focusing on 1% better every day, we’re gonna achieve what we wanna achieve in our lives.

Jeff: Definitely, yup.

Andy: And, you know, I think… I’ve been reading about greatness, and I came across this definition which I thought was so powerful, and I think it’s such a great lesson for everyone. Is that this author, based on research and so on, it said you know, “The definition of greatness is becoming the best version of ourselves possible.” So there’s not one standard for greatness, it’s how we make ourselves great within our capabilities. And it’s just yeah, making that commitment, that habit, to get just a little bit smarter every day and yeah, be the best version of ourselves. That is greatness.

Jeff: I love it. I love it. His name is Andy Paul, the website is thesaleshouse.com, you have my personal endorsement on that that it would be not very large amount of money, very, very well spent.

Andy: A dollar a day.

Jeff: A dollar a day, there you go, very, very well spent. Andy, once again thanks so much for all that you do for this great industry. Thanks, in particular, for being on “The Buyer’s Mind.”

Andy: Jeff, thanks, again for having me, I love it.

Jeff: So there you go, Andy Paul, with The Sales House. And, Murfy, I know you’ve never met Andy directly, but you get the sense he’s just a really good guy.

Murfy: I love Andy. I think his energy is great, I think he’s got just a positive attitude, and the information he has to share is fantastic.

Jeff: And it belies the idea that if you’re gonna be a sales influencer, you have to be, you know, this big flashy entertainer type of guy. Andy is a fairly cerebral low-key guy, he lets his content do the talking, right? He lets his thinking do the talking, and you can really tell when you hear him for a while.

Murfy: Well, and his whole concepts of being an encourager, a mentor, those kinds of things are I think pretty important concepts for people to get under their belt.

Jeff: Yeah, there’s no question about it. When we look at some of… when he talked about manage the projects, coach to technique, but mentor people, if you just make a note, Murf, I wanna steal that and make it a Jeff Shore original by next Thursday if that’s okay.

Murf: Will do.

Jeff: Okay, thank you. We also just… I love that concept that, you know, we’re trying to go for more, right? So we’re focusing on quantity, but at the time we are suffering quality. And that as Andy Paul called it a sort of a brute force approach to selling, and then for salespeople it becomes a matter of compliance, like, “Did I check all the boxes? Did I do all of these things that the system told me to do?” And it’s not that… I think I can speak for Andy or myself, it’s not that we’re anti-technology, but it can take away from salespeople being their very best. And I love that when Andy was talking at the very end about how do we become the best version of ourselves, that is greatness, when we become the best version of ourselves.

But I do wanna go back here just in wrapping it up, and talk to the sales leaders here for just a moment. If you have a team of people that you are responsible for leading, I do want you to adopt that mindset that Andy Paul was talking about, that we manage projects and systems, we coach to the technique, but we mentor people. And sometimes we get in that sense of saying, “Well, what is my primary role? My primary role is a manager. It says so right on my card.” Or when we get a little bit more evolved on that, “My primary role is a coach because I wanna make sure that my salespeople are as strong in their technique as they can be.”

But when I look at it and I see myself primarily as a mentor, that’s a game changer or a potential game changer. It gives us the opportunity to teach to recast our roles, to change the way that we see ourselves. See, if I’m a leader, and I’ve got a group of people that report to me, and I just wanna look and I say, “I’m gonna manage them, then I’m gonna treat them just like a company resource out there that I have to try and wring every bit of production out of it. If I say that I’m gonna coach them, well, that’s certainly better and stronger in the sense that I’m going to make them better at what it is that they do.”

“But if I say that my responsibility… if I see myself as a person who’s going to mentor them, then this becomes very holistic, now I’m looking for how to make each individual person the best version of themselves across the board.” That’s really powerful, and then you look at the long-term impact of that and it’s great, it should get you really, really excited. So that’s my challenge to you by way of Andy Paul, how do we mentor people? How do we look at our people as the opportunity to say, “It’s not just a matter of me making sure that I keep this person producing that they’re some sort of sales factory that cranks out a sale whenever I need them to, but instead that I’m mentoring them and the whole of them, that’s really, really cool”? And I know I’ll carry that away from this episode of “The Buyer’s Mind.”

All right, so once again, you can go over to thesaleshouse.com, we’ll put that in the show notes as well. Always love having Andy on the show, and always love having you taking the time to listen to “The Buyer’s Mind.” We love putting this together, and we hope you’re enjoying it. If you are, write a review over on iTunes, we would be very much appreciate it. But other than that, to go out there today and change someone’s world.


Are you floating in the GOOD ENOUGH Zone™ or stuck in the SHUTDOWN Zone™?

from Jeff’s new book, Follow Up and Close the Sale

The Follow-up Resistance Scorecard™ will help you to assess those areas where Resistance presents a stumbling block to your sales success.

Sign up below.


About the Author: Jeff Shore

Jeff Shore

Jeff Shore is the Founder and President of Shore Consulting, Inc. a company specializing in field-tested and proven consumer psychology-based sales training programs.

Jeff is a top-selling author, host of the popular sales podcast, The Buyer’s Mind, and an award-winning keynote speaker. He holds the prestigious Certified Speaking Professional designation from the National Speakers Association and is a member of the NSA’s exclusive Million Dollar Speaker’s Group.

With over 30 years of real-world, frontline experience, Jeff’s advanced sales strategies spring from extensive research into the psychology of buying and selling. He teaches salespeople how to climb inside the mind of their customers to sell the way their buyers want to buy. Using these modern, game-changing techniques, Jeff Shore’s clients generated over $30 billion in sales last year.