Posts Tagged ‘invest’

Many times when we miss a result we get discouraged don’t we? In sales when you’re working with a customer for hours, days, even months only to result in not making a deal(!!!)… you get discouraged…you get down…you get frustrated because you “missed” a sale. Or say you tried out for a team, submitted a paper for publishing, posted a blog, called on a new client, or had a one on one meeting with an advisor for school, counselor for your kids, or just someone that you needed a favorable outcome with and you didn’t to get it… you may think that you missed, but you didn’t …because what you “missed” actually becomes your momentum.

I tell my sales people all the time to feed the machine – meaning feed the action… feed the effort… if you feed it, the results will show and when they don’t “show”… when you feel that you missed, I want you to look at it differently. Look at it as momentum-at least you’re taking action, hell most people don’t even do that… they just sit and hope that something will come around, but hope is not a strategy. Look, I’d rather you try and fail than succeed and never trying because the action that you took- no it didn’t result in a cashable outcome, but it does still have value.… it’s called Feedback.

Feedback is a good thing…good or “bad”…favorable or “unfavorable,” use the feedback to tweak and refine your next approach, phone call, meeting, or submission.

Feedback is the noise that you get back – the bounce back from the effort that you made. Musicians know all about feedback… when they get on stage they do a sound check because sometimes their mic gives that deafening ring – that’s Feedback and the sound engineer makes the necessary adjustments so the sound comes out clear and crisp when they get ready to perform…your process needs to be the same way. When you step onto the stage with a customer…when you step onto the grand stage of Life– sure your initial try may be ear piercing feedback, but make the necessary adjustments….

Musicians don’t walk off stage due to an foul sound- no they adjust- not only initially but all throughout the performance… so should you…

Whether you’re slaying it today or just flat ass bombing, make the adjustments with the feedback that you’re receiving – don’t personalize or internalize it, just keep working it…

…& if you “miss” the result keep in mind that you made the momentum. Make the adjustments and keep on rocking.

I’ll see you on the Blacktop.

***Catch & subscribe to my daily 5 min podcast The Sales Life w Marsh Buice on iTunes or anchor.fm

image

After giving nearly half of his life to the car business, I had a salesperson tell me he was quitting. His reasoning was that he couldn’t take the customers any more. Take…

You can take a flight to the Bahamas; you can take your car in for an oil change, you can take a to-go plate home, but taking without first giving is called theft. If I want to lay on the beach with a Corona, keep my vehicle running smoothly, or enjoy Chinese food while watching an episode of Scandal, I must first be willing to give- first my time, then my resources. Give is the exchange rate for take.

You’re customers aren’t the problem, you are your problem. You’re locked up in your self-imposed prison because you’re always on the take.

Your customers aren’t unable, they’re unwilling- and there is a difference. They’re able to take your product home but unwilling to because you haven’t offered a compelling solution to their problem.

It’s called give AND take- not OR.

A Little Bit Goes A Long Way

The new 50th anniversary Lamborghini Veneno carries a price tag of $3.9 million, making it one of the most expensive cars ever produced. It sits on a $400,000 chassis, is adorned with custom made aerodynamic panels, all cradled with a V12 engine that cranks out 750 horsepower-reaching 60 mph in less than 3 seconds and top speeds of 220 miles per hour (Just what we need to sleep in a little later). In spite of the millions of dollars poured into the research and development, it is for naught if it’s missing one critical element- $3.50 worth of fuel. No fuel, no trip.

It is estimated that if your body were to be scientifically reproduced, it would cost over $6 million. I bet you had no idea you were already a multi- millionaire. Your chassis is composed of 206 bones and a staggering 60,000-mile long fuel system of veins-all adorned with custom panels of potential capable of achieving unlimited feats of success. You are crafted of the finest materials, banked with untapped possibilities, yet your tank is empty-parked on the shoulders of life. No fuel, no trip.

Even though a toddler hears the word “No” as much as 400 times per day, they seem to be unphased- why? The reason why toddlers are resilient and continue to explore is because someone is always replenishing their tanks with feedings of love, encouragement, and hugs. As a sales toddler, being told “No” is one of the keys to saying yes to success, but hearing the word “No” from 7 out of every 10 encounters begins to wear us down. When you began selling, your tank was full of optimism-you had a new lease on life and you were determined to make things happen…then the rejection set in. Customers promised you they’ll be right back only to discover they went down the street and bought a vehicle elsewhere; other customers told you to call them tomorrow, yet they purposefully gave you the wrong phone number; the couple you worked for 3 hours last Saturday- climbing in and out of 150 degree vehicles, didn’t even think to ask for you as they buy from your fellow salesperson. As the rejection mounts up, so too does your negative language. Once you looked through the lenses of possibilities; today you place everything under the microscope that magnifies your problems. Twelve hours later, as you drive home, your low gas light dings-your last $3 is put into the tank, just enough to limp into work tomorrow and pick up your draw check. As you walk through the door, you notice the thin envelope on your kitchen counter notifying you what you already knew-your account is overdrawn. Before you can put your keys on the counter, you’re told you son needs tubes to cure his ear infections. By the way the toilet is stopped up and the water pipe burst making yours and your neighbor’s yard a swampy mess.

No deposits-only withdrawals. As a toddler we had the luxury of someone else making deposits for us, but as we grow older and less dependant on others, the depositing rests more on our shoulders while life makes its withdrawals. The time to invest in yourself is before you’ve drained all of your accounts of optimism. With a wealth of free blogs, podcasts, and magazines literally at our fingertips, we cry we don’t have the time or the money to make such an investment. Abraham Lincoln used to walk for miles to borrow a book, yet we won’t even Google an article nor purchase a free library card.

As your profession and the world continue to throw punches at you, it’s what you are feeding your mind that will determine how and if you will fight back. Read biographies of people who have walked where you are walking-read of those who were staring into the abyss of life, yet today they are on top of the world. You need faith, love, and encouragement-the best person to give you that is you. Build yourself up with positive, uplifting words or messages-put fuel in your tank. As you are getting ready for work or taking the commute, read between your ears through audio. Wake up 10 minutes earlier and sip the beans of success. Don’t allow your fiery potential to become a smoldering heap of charred possibilities.

It takes just one penny doubling in value every day to be worth over $5 million in only one month’s time! On day 8 it’s worth $1.28; day 16 it’s worth $328; day 25 it’s $168,000 and on day 30 that penny reaches $5.3 million!

It takes the pennied investment of today, to bring your multi-million dollar potential into reality. It doesn’t take much to go far-besides, you’re worth too much to treat yourself so cheaply.

I’ll see you next time on the blacktop.

Like it or not, sowing and reaping is a real principle we all live by. Everybody on earth, every profession is under the law of sowing and reaping. The law of sowing a reaping can be either good or bad. For example, take the high school student who maintains a high GPA- staying up late at night in order to complete assignments and prepare for tests; that student will reap the benefit of being able to go to any school in the country on a full paid scholarship. Or take the athlete who, in the off-season, is working out-getting bigger, faster, and stronger while others rest on their past accomplishments; that athlete will reap the benefit of signing a huge contract. How about the top producers on the blacktop? Everyday they show up (on time), their attitude is optimistic and they sow a plan of action each day; they know the numbers and how many people they must get in front of each day in order to make a sale; they are disciplined and deliberate in their actions.  That salesperson will reap the benefits of a great month.

On the downside, when you sow the seeds of missed workouts and begin to eat fried foods and candy, you will reap the benefits of having to buy bigger pants to encompass your growing waistline. If you spend every dime you make and max out all of your credit cards, you will eventually reap bankruptcy. What seeds are you sowing on the blacktop? If you are sowing a negative frame of mind, show up late for work, shortcutting your deals, and shortchanging your clients, you will reap a poor month.

Sowing and reaping is a test of faith; what if you sow good seeds and your month gets wiped out-even though you showed up on time and were disciplined to work your plan? Think of the farmers who do everything right-they prepare the soil; sow the seeds only to see a flood wipe out all of their hard work. Farmers get back on their equipment, work the land, and sow the seeds once again, because they understand they cannot reap a harvest if they don’t first sow the seeds.

When you have a bad month, don’t check out and begin to look for another career. Look at how far you’ve come. When you got into sales, you had bad credit, you owed everybody, and you drove up in a hooptie with a cracked radiator-not to mention you were past due on your rent. Today, you’ve restored your credit and bought your first home; you have a nice car that you can now valet park and have a little money in the bank. Everything you’ve accomplished is not by accident; you’ve reaped a harvest because you sowed the right seeds. Even though you couldn’t see immediate results, you had faith to sow the seeds in hopes of reaping a turnaround in your life.

The conditions are perfect for you to begin to sow the right seeds and when the weeds of negativity and doubt begin to creep in, yank them up by the roots. Sow the right seeds with the right intentions, and reap the crop you deserve. I’ll see you next time on the blacktop.

If you were afforded the opportunity to work at a dealership under the guise that you must first invest 25, 50, or even $100,000 would you pony up? If you did elect to invest such a large sum of money, would you even be the least bit curious as to what kind of return you would earn on your investment? Once you’ve finished your latest Sportscenter analysis of last night’s game, trek into the bowels of your dealership and meet the ones who have literally put their money where their mouth is. Technicians don’t have the luxury of showing up Day 1 to a pile of broken vehicles and a war chest of tools in which to repair them. Aside from having to amass hundreds of hours to achieve certification, technicians comply with the creed that they first must invest before they earn a return. Not only must they possess the right skill sets in order to work on YOUR CUSTOMER’S vehicle, they must also invest in the right tools to fix them. Master technicians have little interest in holding water cooler conversations, often flinging an answer to your questions with a simple “Yes” or “No” before scurrying off to find the right attachment to their impact wrench. A tech’s time literally is money; if they are talking, they aren’t turning; if they aren’t turning, they aren’t earning. There’s little margin for error either. If they do it wrong? At the very least, they’ll have to fix it for free, but at most, a faulty repair could cost your customers their lives. It ain’t easy being greasy.

If a technician is willing to mortgage today’s comfort zone in hopes for a better future; if the dealer signs his name attesting to millions of dollars of inventory and liability, walking the razor thin line of poverty or wealth; if your family has pledged to support you and your new sales career by stretching a week’s wages into a month long struggle; if these people are willing to push all of their chips in and invest, why aren’t you? Sure you can pay the godfather of the dealership to take your yearly sales certification courses; sure you can snooze in the captain’s chair of your favorite SUV on the used car lot; sure you can swear to your manager you’ve been in the back helping a customer, when instead you’ve been on a 2 hour lunch; sure you can fib and pull one over on a customer in an effort to cover your draw. You can cheat, slight, and duck, but in reality the only thing you are cheating is your future. When you don’t invest in today, there can be no better tomorrows.  

Athletes can’t just show up for the playoffs; lawyers don’t appear when the jury deliberates, nor do actors win the Academy Award by happenstance.  At one point in time, each one was benched; side-bared, and debunked from the leading role, but in spite of all of the failures, setbacks, and defeats, they kept on investing knowing one day they would receive a return.  Everything’s at stake, how much are willing to invest?

I could tell when my  friend called me from Austin last weekend, he was not paying me a social call.  Absent from our conversation was the normal bantering of insults hurled at each through laughter.  My heart immediately dropped into my stomach because I knew whatever the message, it was not good.   A friend and loyal customer of ours was suddenly killed that humid July morning.  As was AJ’s nature, if someone would call for  help, rest assured AJ would be there.  His neighbor had called him and asked him to help cut a tree. I imagine AJ had cut more trees than I have numbered the years on earth.  From what I know everything was going according to plan when suddenly the tree shifted and AJ’s safe place now became a place of tragic ending.  He was struck in the head and killed instantly. 

Years ago, AJ came by the dealership for nothing more than to say hello and have a cup of coffee.  Without saying a word, one of my managers reached in his desk drawer and pulled out a blue velvet box about the size of a man’s hand (not Shaq’s) and handed it to AJ.  I now believe the saying that “we are all young at heart,” because at that instant he went from a man who had seen nearly 7 decades of living to a 12 year old on Christmas day.  His eyes lit up as he pulled out the sterling silver belt buckle engraved with the Dodge Ram’s head on it.  Every year the rodeo we sponsor gives us a Silversmith belt buckle.  Although nice, the buckle does not mean alot to us city slickers.  It meant the world to AJ.  In his casket, he laid peacefully- the buckle wrapped around his waist.  There were numerous pictures of him wearing that buckle displayed throughout the funeral home’s room.  We have heard people say the phrase, “I take it everywhere I go;”  AJ did just that.  I mean he took pictures from dress clothes, to jeans, to bathrobes- and the buckle was there with AJ, both smiling proudly for the camera.  AJ loved life.  He always had a smile on his face and a laugh that would turn the most sour person’s day around.  He lived a full life, not necessarily by years, but by the love he left behind.  He made his mark and then he had to leave.

Death is a jolting reminder of how precious life really is.  There were no guarantees that our mothers would carry us full term.  There were a myriad of circumstances that would have caused us to not be born, but there is a 100% guarantee that we will die.  As a matter of fact, we are dying right now.  Fortunes have been made, lost, and made again; we do not have that luxury with time.  I think about how many times I have stormed out of the house angry, like a 37 year old child who did not get his way.  What if I never came back? If I were to die at that second what would I have given to kiss my family just one last time…just to say goodbye? 

Through the eyes of death we see life, and through life we live the possibilities. There are possibilities all around us, but many times we cannot see them because we are too busy focused on the problems around us which probably will not matter 2 years, 2 months, or even 2 minutes from now. 

We have the power of choice.  What we do with the 86,400 seconds we have today is up to us.  We can squander our time wasting it on inconsequential things or we can spend it as a philanthropist, living for not just for ourselves, but more for others-even people we do not even know and hope we get a chance to do it again tomorrow. The time we have can pay dividends or incur losses, depending how we chose to invest it.

When the sands run out of your hour glass the only thing that will have mattered is the mark you left behind on this earth.  That mark is called a Legacy….how you leave it is up to you.