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Have you ever used a product or an app and thought to yourself, “Damn, why didn’t I think of that?! I mean the idea was so simple – it’s been sitting there in plain sight my whole life,” slaps forehead), “Why didn’t I just see it?”

You didn’t see it because you’re not trained to see it…

VC firms have what’s called Idea Flow. Masses of people line up & pitch a continuous flow of ideas & projects to the VC members. If they like the idea, these firms will invest millions of dollars in hopes of reaping multiple millions if not billions of dollars in the future. Fewer than 1% of these ideas make it through the next stage, but some go on to become Facebook, Airbnb, Uber, and Twitter (Waitr an online food/grocery delivery app based in my hometown named sold this past summer for $308 million.) (Slaps forehead again)

Now I know what you’re thinking, I don’t have millions to spend nor years to invest, but you & VC firms share one thing in common, you both have “idea flow.

In the book Disrupt You!, Jay Samit challenges his students to write 3 things that you notice that could be improved every day. He says that at first it’ll be easy, but as the days roll on it’ll become more and more challenging, but if you discipline yourself to do this every day it’ll cause you to become more introspective and more observant to the world around you.

Anything… Everything is up for grabs… “How can this be improved?” Recently Tesla founder Elon Musk looked at the bottleneck of Los Angeles traffic & posed the idea of building an underground tunnel were people seamlessly commute in a capsule. Will it come to life? Who knows, but that’s one of hundreds of ideas that Musk spitballs and asks, “What if?” Instead of taking life at face value, why not generate your own idea flow? When you’re standing in line, ordering, shopping, or just taking a piss, ask yourself, “How can this be improved?”

Think about Poo-Pourri, a small bottle that you can drop into the toilet bowl after you take a crap at your friend’s house to hide the stank… “Why didn’t I think of that?” (Quickly slaps forehead.)

Even on your job…what’s the bottle-neck? What can be improved? How can this be disrupted? Frustrated? Good! The more frustrated the better, because frustrating times are prime opportunities for you to take notice and ask, “How can this be bettered?” See, while the rest of the world stands around pointing and bitching, you’re strategically thinking about capitalizing on disruption. Uber took the status quo taxi service and flipped it upside down. Airbnb, which started as an air mattress on the floor and breakfast in the morning, disrupted the entire hotel industry.

Not all of your ideas will come to life, but you need a continuous flow of them for the best ones to rise to the top. Three ideas per day, that’s 90/month-that’s 1000/year. Just imagine if 1% of those ideas disrupted your life for the better? Change starts with an idea.

Try it this week and let me know how it goes.

Subscribe to my weekly podcast The Sales Life w/ Marsh Buice. You can find it on iTunes, Spotify, or Google Play

The broken places become the strongest points when re-welded. What components do you use to re-weld your life.

Most people initially struggle in sales because they’ve been taking orders their whole life. When you were young, you did what your parents told you to do. Sure, you may have bucked up a time or hundred, but immediately you’d back down from rebelling once they slapped you back with one of those, “When you have your own damn place and pay your own damn bills, then you can do whatever the hell you want to do…but until then, you better do what the hell I tell you to do!” We grow older, but in some ways, we never age emotionally-I mean we pop bottles on monumental birthdays, but we stall out in a fixed wage mindset. Our employer tells us, “Do that and I’ll pay you this,” which traditionally is par for the course, but when you get into the sales, you’ve got to take that decade or more of being an “order taker-” of being told what to do and you’ve got to flip it on its head. If you were working in fast food as a salesperson,  it’d be as if someone came in and placed an order, and then you turned right back around and challenged that same order.

(Customer): “Yea I’d like a large #6 with a Coke.”

(You, the fast food salesperson): “You know a small cheeseburger with a water would be calorically better.”

You couldn’t do that working at Slap Beef Burger– hell you wouldn’t be there long if you did. You can’t challenge when it comes to taking orders, but you do have to push back when it comes to working in sales.

Selling effectively is all about challenging the thoughts of your customers. Statistically speaking most of your customers are going to buy something different than when they first started looking. Keeping that thought in mind, it’s not that you ignore them or tell them defiantly, “You don’t need that…this is what you need;” it’s more so leaning into their logic with suggestions and notice the patterns that begin to emerge when you ask Past, Present, and Future questions. What did they like before? What do they wish they had now as opposed to then? Why is your customer in the market in the first place and how will your product fit their needs? Based on your customers’ answers, you then begin to steer the sale, by adjusting your sails. As the conditions of your customers’ answers improve or deteriorate, you adjust your sails towards the winds of budgetary concerns, options, equity, or the fact that they’ve got a funky attitude thanks to their last 4 sales experiences.

I know this seems challenging at first. You will get better, but first, you’ve got to stop stopping. When a customer “places an order-” when they make a statement or voice an objection don’t just pull up short and react, clarify and challenge their thoughts, objections, fears and concerns instead. What do they really mean? Where are they going with this? What’s the intent behind their words? Anticipate and adjust accordingly. Think to yourself, how can I give their ideas fresh legs with a new perspective?

Of course when you’re new, your mind is going to screeeeam at you to stop. This is all new to you-you fearfully get the answers but you’ll never knowledgeably amass the answers nor gain experience if you keep on stopping at the points where you get stuck.

Stop stopping…

Oh…but you thought this post was only about those people in sales?

No, I’m talking to you too.

You may not work in sales, but you sure as hell live in sales. Sales isn’t just a profession, it’s a life skill and you need to stop stopping. You may not have to fill an order, but you do have to fulfill a calling. What’s life calling you to do? What’s that pull…what’s that whisper..what’s that yearn?

Through circumstances and events-some beyond your control, life tries to place an order on your life and I’m telling you that you don’t have to fill that order. Your past is ordering that you aren’t good enough. Your upbringing is ordering that you’ll never get off of assistance. The notice you received; the word you just got, the month that you’re having right now is ordering that you’ll never make it out-that you’ll never move up and that you’ll never get ahead. What you’ve got, where you came from, or what you’re going through, is not a calling, it’s an order. Life’s pulling at you to lift your eyes above your thoughts and present circumstances and stop stopping.

Fu*k that order…take today’s apron off and throw it on the counter and say, “No…you can’t take my order, but you can sure as shit take mine.”  Stop taking orders and begin placing them. Fear left un-pushed, will make you wait for your orders…but fear acted upon, learned from, and put back in motion will make you realize your full potential.

Pull up, place your order, and stop stopping.

Catch the 300+ episodes of The Sales Life w/ Marsh Buice podcast. Find it on iTunes or your favorite podcast app.

 

 

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After losing 70 lbs many people ask me how I lost the weight and although I was excited to tell them all of the thoughts and methods that went into my no pill, no surgery weight loss, I found that I would lose them in mere seconds. At first, they were eager to hear, but when I exploded into my passionate ordeal, their eyes would glaze over with information overload. So now when people ask me the “how’d you do it” question, I keep it simple by saying, “Just do one thing..”

I had a friend who was frustrated because she couldn’t seem to shake the baby weight off and everyone she asked gave her conflicting advice. One person says more cardio and less weight training while another says less cardio and more weights; one says to eat more fruit another person says eat bacon and cut out the carbs. She had no idea who to believe so she ended up doing what most of us do…nothing.

She ended up joining a gym, but ended up never going because her days were overloaded with taking the kids to & from school, dropping them to karate and dance, rushing home to cook, take baths, and do homework so by the end of the day she was too exhausted to even cry. The thoughts of what she should do made the situation even worse, “I know I should work out, but I’m just too tired and hate myself  for not going,” she said. Her frustration led her to smoke more, eat worse, and sink even deeper into misery.

All I could do is smile because we can all relate to her story.

My advice to her? “Just do one thing…”

The reason why resolutions don’t work is because we try to change too much all at once. We vow to not eat fried food and never look twice at Blue Bell ice cream again. We swear that we’re going to get up early and not stay up late…someday…just not today, because we’re too busy running on the hamster wheel of Life.

Studies show that if you try to change 3 or more things at once you’ll have a 5% chance of success; if you try to change 2 habits, you’ll increase your chances of success to 30%, but if you just try to change 1 habit, you’ll have an 85% success rate. If you’re trying to lose weight, pay down debt, or be more productive or knowledgeable, just do one thing to nudge yourself in the right direction.

In my friend’s case I asked her, “What is the one thing that you could put into your already hectic life right now that wouldn’t disrupt everything else?” She stared at me blankly unable to mentally find the overlaps in her time.  She told me that she didn’t like to wake up early; collapses in bed exhausted every night, and her lunches are crammed with having to run around town and pay bills. Her only constant was her three 15 minute smoke breaks every day. “Give me 1/2 of each one your breaks,” I told her, “The first 8 minutes are yours to do whatever you want to do-smoke, gossip, drink soda-do whatever, but the other 7 minutes I want you to walk around the outside of the building. On the next break do the same thing except go into the bathroom stall and knock out as many air squats as you can in 7 minutes. The last break go for another walk and bang out some push-ups in an obscure location or do lunges the full length of the hall way.” The truth is we all have spare moments, but the fallacy is that we think the moments are too insignificant to see any real, meaningful results…so we end up doing nothing, but beating our self-esteem to death.

Without changing anything in the course of a normal, chaotic day, she just found 21 minutes to change the course of her life.

Can you write a book, master a craft, or have a beach body in just 21 minutes? Not in “a” day, but you sure as hell can “per” day.

The problem is we want the results, but haven’t yet built in the consistency, so taking 7 minutes a few times during the day will do just that. These micro-wins cauterize the depression and negate the self-sabotage and as you win more, you’ll find that you’ll challenge yourself to more too. With a fresh perspective, you’ll find more windows of opportunities to increase your success capital. Early into my weight loss quest, instead of mindlessly scrolling through social media while waiting for my son’s practice to end, I jumped rope while he took snaps. At games, during half time, instead of running to the concession stand, I would sneak off to a secluded part of the parking lot and do a 15 minute body weight program from the Fitness Blender channel on YouTube instead. This is what James Clear calls habit graduating; putting 1 habit into your day, becoming a mf’ing boss at that tiny habit, and then graduating with a little more along the way. My 7 minutes, led to 15 minutes, which parlayed to 1 mile that ended up in a half marathon and along the way, I ate better, thought clearer, and produced more.

The slights got you to where you are today…and the slights will take you where you need to be in the future…but first start with just 1.

I’ll see you on the other side and can’t wait to hear about your results.

Subscribe to The Sales Life w/ Marsh Buice podcast where we make a point in minutes not hours. Check it out on iTunesSpotify, or your favorite podcast platform.

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Hear the 8 min episode, “The multiplying forces for your Life,” here.

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  • In a previous blog, we talked about the 3 forces holding you back: Resistance, rational thought, and your friends and family.
  • But you have allies to help push your forward to success as well.
    • Your allies are: Stupidity, stubbornness, blind faith,  passion, and your friends & family. (Yes friends & family can be a help and hindrance.)
  • You’re stupid, and I hope you stay that way too.

“Ignorance and arrogance are the artist and entrepreneur’s indispensable allies. She must be clueless enough to not know how difficult it’s going to be, yet cocky enough to think she can pull it off anyway.” ~Steven Pressfield

  • When new in sales, have you ever showed up and sold the customer no one could ever sell or  sold the package/product that every other sales person walked around and you sold it for all the money? That’s stupidity in action. As salespeople, we get too smart for our own good. Grow smart in your knowledge and experience but stay stupid in predicting whether a customer can, will, or is able to purchase from you right now.
    • 3 lbs, i.e. your brain,  is what’s standing between you and mind-blowing success.
    • Rational thought and logic step in and try to talk you out of taking risks…asking for the business..making more calls…& pressing beyond the no’s.
  • Stubbornness is a multiplying force for you. It’s when you bite into something and refuse to let go.
    • You’re so stubborn in your quest that you’re like a dog with a chew toy. Try to take a dog’s toy out of his mouth-you can yank left and right, but he won’t let go…and if he loses his grip, he quickly pounces forward to get it back.
      • That’s the kind of stubbornness you need to succeed.
      • You don’t wait for an opportunity you make one…and when you make one…you’re stubborn enough to master it.

        • During the recession, I had a salesperson who wouldn’t let go of customers. Even after I’d exhausted all of my angles and resources, he stayed with the customer and kept trying. One night when we were locking up, I asked him, “Why do you stay with customers even when I tell you to let them go?” He told me, “Because I don’t know when I’m going to see another customer again.” He made the most out of the lack. Where other salespeople stood around, complained and worried about the future, he maximized his present.
        • Keeping that mindset caused him to dig, press, and recycle different objections, thoughts, and ideas over and over…and he ended up making deals no one thought could be made.

Work as if you’re broke and sell as if you’re rich. Be so humble to work your ass off as if you don’t know where your next meal will come from and when you’re with a customer, be so confident to act as if you couldn’t fit another dollar in your bank account even if it’s untrue.

  • Blind faith isn’t about knowing the whole formula before taking a step-it’s about taking the leap not certain where your foot will land, but faith that it’ll land right where it needs to.
    • They call it blind faith for a reason…there is no such thing as certainty. The only certainty you need is breath and legs…and with that, you can make massive things happen.
    • The only thing Life hands to a person in wait is scraps.
  • Make and create your opportunities..use your blind faith and mix that with your passion. Passion is where you work nights and weekends…it’s working in the overlaps of time…10 min here…3 min there…it’s doing what you’re good at and becoming the best…becoming a beast.
    • I knew I had a passion for sales during the recession of 2008. I didn’t know if the doors would be unlocked or if I’d even have a job, but I never lost my love for the sales profession.
    • You’ll often find your passions in the most dire of circumstances & chaotic of moments. When occasions are at their hardest, you’re still unwaveringly pressing on and improving. That’s your true north…that’s your passion.
    • Fear will rob you of your passion.
      • We what if ourselves to death. What if it doesn’t work? What if I can’t go back to my old job? What if, what if, what if?

But what if you did make it?

  • Friends and family are your multipliers too.

When you’re at your highest or at your lowest, darkest moments, there’s nothing like friends and family being there for you.

  • My daughter’s been like that for me. While sitting at the light the other day she told me, “Daddy, there were days I didn’t even know who you were anymore, but I still came to see you anyway because you’re my dad and I love you.”
  • Let your family be on your bus…just don’t let them drive it.

This is your ride…your Life. Now take your stupid, stubborn, blind faith, passionate ass out there and make something happen today.

Subscribe to The Sales Life w/ Marsh Buice podcast where we make a point in minutes not hours. Check it out on iTunesSpotify, or your favorite podcast platform.

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Hear the full episode “Back in the Sales Lab: Rarity” right here. 

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  • Do you know you possess the #1 skill needed today?
    • Don’t be so quick to be envious of those on your Instagram feed…if you’d only realize that you possess the #1 skill in the world.
  • What is the #1 skill in the world? Communication
    • The kind of communication I’m talking about is the ability to express and transmute your ideas onto others.
    • Anything we need to know is one Siri command away; but what is a rarity is the one who can articulate and bring an idea to life-so rich, so vibrant that the customer sees what you see!

And YOU possess the #1 skill.

Just saying the words, “I’m a salesperson,” make others cringe, yet you have the ability to embrace the hostility, discover your customer’s concerns, and by the time you are finished, they’re singing your praises. 

  • That’s why I say Selling is an Art.
  • Customer’s don’t really hate your profession…they’re actually mystified on how you can create magic right in front of their faces-no slight of hand, no mirror or special lighting…just art.
  • When retired NBA legend Kobe Bryant first walked into the animation studios, he was blown away how an artist can start with only a few unrecognizable lines and 20 shadings and lines later, the artist brings his character to life.
  • (Parents teach your children the art of communication.)
    • Where everyone else is hiding behind a text message, you be the one to stand boldly and communicate your art before a live audience. That is an art!
  • In his new book, Carmine Gallo says the art of communication will make you “indestructible” because no matter what happens in your life, you’ll have the ability to get back up, dust off, and keep communicating. (That’s why I love sales.)

Share your thoughts with me from the podcast.

Subscribe to The Sales Life w/ Marsh Buice podcast where we make a point in minutes not hours. Check it out on iTunesSpotify, or your favorite podcast platform.

 

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Listen to the full 10 min episode, “‘Forgive & Forget’ is bs,” right here.

Lenny Kravitz Family

  • Musician Lenny Kravitz was the son of a soldier and an actress. (His mother played Helen Willis on the tv show The Jeffersons.)
  • After doing all she could to keep the family together, Lenny’s mother had enough of his father’s womanizing and she put him out…but before she did, she asked Lenny’s dad if he had any final words to his young son. His dad stood and said,

Yea, he’ll do it too.

  • Those 4 words haunted Lenny for years and strained his relationship with his father.
  • It was only on his deathbed did his father drop the facade.
  • That’s when Lenny decided that he must forgive & accept his father-who he was…and who he wasn’t.
  • I believe Forgive & Forget is total bullshit.When you’re hurt, people dismissively tell you to just forget about all of the wrongs..the disses…the betrayals from those who meant so much to you in your life, but how do you forget about all of the wrong when you cannot forgive what they’ve done to you and how they abandoned?
    • You don’t want to forgive because you don’t want to let them off the hook that easy…you think, “I can’t let them just walk away scott free while I sit here and try to pick up the pieces of my life!”

  •  Listening to Lenny’s story I’ve realized that it’s not about forgetting in order to forgive…instead, it’s accepting what’s already been done.
  • Healing is through forgiving & accepting. Accept the fact that you were kicked out, done wrong, forced out..& left to figure it all out or die.
  • Accept too that you didn’t have perfect parents. Because I’ve been resistant to accept my parents, I’ve taken on the very characteristics that I resented. I’m sure my children ask the same questions I’ve wondered in my parents, “Who are you?”
  • It’s not for me to change others, it’s to accept them so that I can move forward in my own life.
  • You should never forget because that’s how you gain experience and wisdom, just don’t punish the world and your future self because you’re unable to forget.
  • “If they’re no longer living with you then why are they living rent free in your head? If you no longer work for them, then why are they still your employer in your head?”

  • Forgive and accept is not for others..it’s for you.

Share your thoughts with me from the podcast.

Subscribe to The Sales Life w/ Marsh Buice podcast where we make a point in minutes not hours. Check it out on iTunesSpotify, or your favorite podcast platform.