What is it that the best sales professionals know….that others don’t?
#selling, #sales training
What is it that the best sales professionals know….that others don’t?
#selling, #sales training
What is plussing? How can it take you to the next level of success? Find out in this inspiring video by Professional Speaker, Author, and Master Sales Trainer Mark Bowser
Success leaves clues. In order for us to become champions, we must watch champions. If we model what they do, think what they think, believe what they believe, learn what they learned, then we will get similar results. One such champion I think we can learn from is one of the great thinkers, inventors, and leaders in history Benjamin Franklin.
Benjamin Franklin had a goal of Moral Perfection. Even though he never reached that goal, Franklin believes the endeavor for perfection made him a happier, more successful person. Franklin discovered that this habit was the key to success. Franklin observed,
It was about this time I conceiv’d the bold and arduous project of arriving at moral perfection. I wish’d to live without committing any fault at any time; I would conquer all that either natural inclination, custom, or company might lead me into. As I knew, or thought I knew, what was right and wrong, I did not see why I might not always do the one and avoid the other. But I soon found I had undertaken a task of more difficulty than I had imagined. While my care was emply’d in guarding against one fault, I was often surprised by another; habit took the advantage of inattention; inclination was sometimes too strong for reason. I concluded, at length, that the mere speculative conviction that it was our interest to be completely virtuous, was not sufficient to prevent our slipping; and that the contrary habits must be broken, and good ones acquired and established, before we can have any dependence on a steady, uniform rectitude of conduct. For this purpose I therefore contrived the following method.
Franklin’s method consisted of 13 virtues. He would focus on one virtue at a time. He would spend one week focusing on that virtue and then he would move on to the next virtue. Every night, Franklin would record his progress in a book. He would mark every transgression he made that day not only in the virtue he was focusing on but in all 13 virtues. We might describe this exercise as one of great difficulty or one that takes too much time. Well, the road to success has never been easy and that is why there is plenty of room at the top. I am climbing the mountain of success and I want you with me. So, I suggest that we take Benjamin Franklin as one of our guides to the top of the mountain of success. Let’s dig into each of his 13 virtues and see what we can learn.
Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.
Franklin believed in being in control of mind and body. If we are out of control, then is it possible to succeed? I say no. Any success that might be accomplished while being out of control would come out of luck and would not be lasting.
Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.
We have been told since childhood that if “we can’t say something nice then don’t say anything at all.” Good advice.
Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.
It has been said that many people spend an extra four hours every week looking for something they know is on their desk but still can’t find. Sound familiar? This happened to be the virtue that Franklin struggled with the most. For some of us, order is not an easy task to accomplish. But success moves with order. Athletes talk about getting “in the zone”, writers and speakers talk about the outline that flows, and mothers talk about bedrooms that-well, you know. Success and order go hand in hand. I am not saying your desk, office, or room has to be spotless. What I am saying is that you have to have an order that works for you. Arrange your space so that every thing you need on a consistent basis is in easy reach. Arrange your time in a way that improves your productivity. For me, that means Goalets List (to do list). Find what works for you and then stick with it.
Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.
You know what you need to do to succeed. Now, go do it!
Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.
Be wise with money. Be a good steward of everything you have been given.
Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.
One of the areas that wastes a lot of my time is television. I love to veg out in front of the tube. However, I could be using that time to work on my dreams and goals. Now, don’t misunderstand me, I am not saying don’t watch T.V. I am saying that we all could probably watch a little less T.V. We need to plan our week. What shows do we really want to watch? Alright, then let’s watch those. Where we will save a lot of valuable time is when we will stop watching shows we don’t care about watching. We plop down in the chair, grab the remote, and start flipping. Don’t see anything good there so let’s flip some more. Before we know it, we have spent an hour flipping channels, watching nothing, and wasting time.
Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.
I believe the best way to accomplish this is to open our Bibles and live what we commonly call The Golden Rule. “Do for others what you would like them to do for you. This is a summary of all that is taught in the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 7:12 NLT)
Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.
The Golden Rule pretty much sums this one up too.
Avoid extreams; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.
Forgive people. Most people who are rude to us or do something to hurt us are in fact hurting themselves. Find a need and fill it.
Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.
Is dressing for success really that important? I believe it is. I am not saying you have to have the best shoes and the most expensive outfits. Not at all. I am saying, we need to look sharp and smell good. Our first impression is important.
Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.
Be proactive at all times. Have some quiet time everyday. A time to reflect and to think.
Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.
King Solomon, the wisest of earthly kings had some great advise for all of us.
“Choose a good reputation over great riches, for being held in high esteem is better than having silver or gold.” (Proverbs 22:1 NLT)
“Drink water from your own well—share your love only with your wife. Why spill the water of your springs in public, having sex with just anyone? You should reserve it for yourselves. Don’t share it with strangers.” (Proverbs 5:15-17 NLT)
Imitate Jesus and Socrates.
Many times when we think of humility, we think of mild mannered and weak. Nothing could be further from the truth. Humility is great strength. Humility is having so much confidence in yourself and the ability that God has given you that you don’t have to brag. Jesus Christ never bragged. He told the truth with great confidence and conviction.
Well, there we have it, Benjamin Franklin’s 13 virtues for success. If we follow them, how can we not reach the mountaintop of success? Even though we can’t keep them perfectly, I am confident that we like Franklin will say, “But, on the whole, tho’ I never arrived at the perfection I had been so ambitious of obtaining, but fell far short of it, yet I was, by the endeavour, a better and a happier man than I otherwise should have been if I had not attempted it….”
*Mark Bowser is a Professional Speaker and Author who has trained some of the top organizations in the world including Southwest Airlines, United States Marine Corp, Dell Computers, Kings Daughters Medical Center, FedEx Logistics, and many many more. To book him as a speaker for your next conference or training event then email info@MarkBowser.com or visit http://www.MarkBowser.com.
Successful selling is about daily habits. The kind of life we will live is determined by the kind of day we choose to live. Dr. Mike Murdock said, “The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.” Because of this it is vital that we consciously choose good selling habits.
What are your selling habits? Are they leading you to more sales…?
*To schedule Mark Bowser as a speaker for your next conference or training event, then email info@MarkBowser.com or visit http://www.MarkBowser.com HURRY! Mark can only accept so many speaking days on his calendar. Make sure your day gets on it before someone else takes your day.
By Mark Bowser
If you put your sales message in front of one person, you will reap a small harvest. If you put your sales message in front of 10,000 people, you will reap a larger harvest.
Understanding and using the Law of Averages leads to more sales and customers for your business. How? When you take an action enough times, a ratio of statistics will begin to introduce itself.
Let me explain. I grew up in Indiana where basketball is king. In fact, my hometown of Anderson has the second largest high school basketball gym in the nation. The “Wigwam” holds just under 9,000 people. The largest high school gym is just 30 minutes down the road in New Castle where their field house seats around 9,300 people. We take our basketball seriously. We also use the Law of Averages. It is called free throw percentage. Games are won and lost at the free throw line.
Games are won and lost in the business world too. Not at the free throw line, but in how we use the Law of Averages. Let’s say that you talk to one hundred people about your business. Two out of those one hundred become new customers of yours. Now you have a ratio. Two out of every one hundred people that you talk with will become a customer. That is exciting! Why? Because the Law of Averages tends to repeat itself. It is consistent. There is a great chance that if you talk with another 100 hundred people, you will gain two more new customers.
I know what you are thinking, “Mark, how can you be so excited? It is only two percent.” Yes, it is only two percent, but it is a place to start. In time, it might be four percent, and then eight percent, and so on. How do you change the Law of Averages? By getting better. By growing. By learning Influence, Leadership, and Sales skills. Also, we have to remember, that those original two percent are going to talk about us. So, if we create them into loyal customers then that word of mouth is going to bring in even more new customers.
There is also a lot of other ways to sell and market. What if you reached your prospects by sending out direct mail pieces and post cards, voice broadcasts, billboards, etc…? How we use the Law of Averages can be endless. It also helps us know how to use our marketing/ sales dollars best. Let’s say that we send out two different post cards to one thousand people each time. By using the Law of Averages, we can see which post card works best. A change in the wording or a change of look can make a big difference to the response rate. The Law of Averages is great! Begin to use it for your advantage and you will be amazed how much more successful your business will become.
*Excerpted by “Sell Your Way To Success” by Mark Bowser. Get your copy today at
By Mark Bowser
“Play your game,” said Coach Galen Scott. The pointed advice was given to a very weary, frustrated college tennis player. If you haven’t guessed, that frustrated athlete was me. I was losing matches, my mind was clogged, and I didn’t know what to do. That is when Galen stepped in an instructed me to play to my strengths.
Galen Scott was not my college tennis coach. Galen was my personal coach. He had been training me for years and had shaped me into the champion that I had become…despite the recent challenges on the court.
However, here was the dilemma. My college coach was telling me to play a style that I wasn’t used to, comfortable with, or trained to perform at a high level. In other words, my college coach was telling me to play towards my weaknesses instead of my strengths.
Why would a coach do such a thing? Why would anyone instruct someone to play towards their weaknesses? Could it be that he was wanting me to develop them into strengths? Or, is it more likely that he personally was more comfortable with that style?
Tennis in many respects is an individual sport. Players are more suited to play certain styles. I was gifted with quick feet, solid power, and a soft touch with the racket. Thus, Galen shaped me with a style best suited for me which was a classic serve and volley game. I would hit a big serve and follow it to the net to conquer the point and the match with my volley. It worked well. I was relentless. The stress on my opponents was oppressive. I never gave them time to rest. I was coming to the net whether they liked it or not and they were forced into a situation where they had to hit excellent shots…or lose.
“Play your game” was ringing in my ears. Do I listen to Galen and have a great opportunity to win or do I listen to my college coach and most likely lose. Not a fun decision for an eighteen year old athlete to have to make. Well, I decided to go with my strengths and I began to win matches. As long as I won, my college coach was happy.
The world of selling is the same as the world of tennis. You have to play to your strengths. Some time ago, I had the opportunity to interview successful sales leader Mark Marshall.
At the time I interviewed Mark Marshall, he was the Sales Director at PQ Systems, Inc in Dayton, Ohio. PQ Systems provides quality software solutions for companies who want to improve their systems and document their quality performance.
After talking and learning from Mark, I believe there are three vital elements that every sales professional has to keep in mind to play to their strengths.
One, it takes time to develop your strength. Mark Marshall believes it takes about a year for a new sales professional to get things going. In many cases, that is true for the brand new sales representative just entering the profession of selling or the veteran joining a different company’s team.
Mark Marshall puts his sales representatives through a rigorous six to twelve month boot camp style training program before they are turned loose to call on customers by themselves. He believes that the roll playing and structured approach is vital for all people who want to succeed in sales and he is getting results that are proving that thought to be true.
Two, trust is the key. When Mark took over as Sales Director at PQ Systems, they were as he put it a very “transactual” team. Their approach was mechanics of selling instead of relational selling. Mark soon changed that. Today, the PQ Systems sales team focuses on building trust and rapport. They are less about product and more about solutions that serve the customer. Mark says, “We are the experts and we help them.” Don’t miss those words “we help them.” When sales professionals focus on serving the customer then closing the sale and commissions have a tendency to take care of themselves.
Three, always seek improvement. The top sales professionals from all industries never believe that they have arrived. There is never a place where we have learned enough. With this belief comes an endless reservoir of energy, growth, and an unlimited potential of sales.
Mark Marshall believes that one of the best ways to seek this constant improvement is to stay in touch with past colleagues. Mark talks with them and gets their thoughts on contemporary challenges. He has discovered these colleagues to be a wealth of knowledge, ideas, and experience. Mark then takes their wisdom and applies it with his team with great success.
So, let me ask you, are you selling to your strengths or are you floundering in someone else’s style? You will only be your best when you play your game. That is where the gold is found.
👉To check Mark’s speaking availability for your next training seminar or conference then email info@MarkBowser.com.
By Mark Bowser
If you don’t plant seeds today, you won’t reap a harvest… tomorrow!
The Law of the Farmer is one of the great success truths of all time. You can find this truth in the ancient book of Matthew found in the Bible. The Great Teacher went down to the sea shore and a great crowd amassed around him. Everywhere he went, the crowds would gather. The Great Teacher looked over the crowd ready to hang onto His every word.
He stepped into a small boat and was pushed a few feet from shore. In this way, the masses would not only be able to see Him more clearly, but would be able to hear Him more effectively as well. The Great Teacher opened His mouth to speak. A hush came over the immense gathering of humanity. The Great Teacher said, “A farmer went out to plant some seed. As he scattered it across his field, some seeds fell on a footpath, and the birds came and ate them.” Let’s stop right here and see what this has to say to us today. The seed fell on the path and birds came and ate the seed.
Hmm? What does that mean? Well, I believe that some people get set in their ways. They like the old way of doing things. They like the old way of seeing things. And they like everything to stay the same. These people are not willing to change and grow. You position your product or service to this individual (you plant a seed). This person is so closed minded that they don’t even see the opportunity so the seed is stolen away, in this case by the birds.
Let me give you an example. For how many years have some medical doctors disagreed with the practice of Chiropractic? Too long to count. Many of them aren’t even willing to consider the possibility that chiropractic care could help their patient. Their patient is not getting better but they would prefer to fail their patient then to open their eyes to refer them to a doctor of chiropractic. My family doctor is different. He had no problem with me seeing my chiropractor Dr. Paul Juszczyk. Why? Because his eyes are open. Now, you might be thinking, “what if the person I am talking with is closed minded? What if they are the seed that falls on the path? What do I do?” My advice is do nothing. Move on to the next prospect. You see, their hardness of mind and heart is not your issue. It is theirs. You did your part. You planted a seed. In this case, it just didn’t grow and that is not your fault.
Let’s get back to the story. The Great Teacher said, “Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The plants sprang up quickly, but they soon wilted beneath the hot sun and died because the roots had no nourishment in the shallow soil.” What does this mean for us? Well, some prospects for your product/ service get very excited about what they are hearing and seeing. The challenge is that they take no action. Because they do nothing, the motivation begins to fade away to where in a very short time the seed begins to die. One of the ancient writings says, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was.” Without action, many seeds will die. So, what should we do? Get the prospect to take action. Get them to make the appointment, fill out the form, whatever, but they must take action immediately or we will lose them.
Next part of the story reads, “Other seeds fell among thorns that shot up and choked out the tender blades.” The thorns could be the other stresses in our lives that preoccupy our minds. When a prospect has a thorn there is not much you can do. The timing may be wrong. You did everything you could possibly do. You planted your seed. Now, it is a waiting game. Contact the prospect on a regular basis to stay in touch. But don’t just call them up and say, “Hi. Just wanted to give you a call to touch base.” Yuk!! You got to give them value. That is why I like
newsletters and ezines. It is a great way to stay in touch and at the same time add value for them. Pack your newsletters with helpful articles that are going to improve their lives and reduce the stress (the thorns).
The Great Teacher finishes His story with, “But some seeds fell on fertile soil and produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted. Anyone who is willing to hear should listen and understand.” Why do some seeds produce more than others? I haven’t a clue. But the truth is that some do and we don’t have to be concerned with the “why.” All we have to do is plant the seeds, water them and fertilize them, and be ready to bring in the harvest.
Another time, the Great Teacher said, “Keep on asking, and you will be given what you ask for. Keep on looking and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And the door is opened to everyone who knocks.” I think this teaches us not to give up. To be persistent. If you are digging for gold, you will have to uncover a lot of dirt to find a nugget, but if you keep asking, seeking, and knocking, you will find the nugget. And the nugget is always worth it. It was Calvin Coolidge who said, “Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than the unsuccessful man with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent…” Stay the course and you will be successful. The Law of the Farmer works and it will work for you too.
*Excerpted from “Sell Your Way To Success” by Mark Bowser. Get your copy at Amazon http://amzn.to/XWGK8M
P.S. Mark Bowser would like to thank the late Jim Rohn who inspired him to look at this Bible story with fresh eyes.