Episode 20: Workplace Culture Can Help You Improve at Sales

 

Welcome to the show everyone. This is our first two part episode and we talk about culture, and what that is in relation to sales and different companies and how we view it. And there’s a lot in these two episodes, which is why we made it two and not just one. But culture means different things to different people. And there’s going to be very big differences between the four of us and what we see as important in our cultures. So, listen in. If you know someone who is struggling with their culture in their company, please share this with them. Sales is hard enough, it doesn’t have to be all out there on your own. And if you have a question or want to give us some feedback, everything is at Sales Throwdown on social media. If you want to take the assessment, send us an email assessments@salesthrowdown.com Thanks.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the main event. In the D corner we have Clint The Cleaver Bigelow. In the I corner, we have Al The Gambler Daniel. In the S corner, we have Nan The Promoter Fallman. In the C corner, we have John Small Mountain Hill. Let’s get ready to throwdown.

Welcome to the show everybody. Today we are talking about kind of a couple couple of different topics of sales culture, making changes when you’re the new guy or, you know, all of that stuff. And this kind of started with just talking before the show and kind of complaining because, you know, how do you know when you’re in the right culture? How do you how do you vet that when you’re looking to potentially make a move? How do you know that you’re in the right spot? How do you know it’s not time to make a change? And…

Well, or even the change you made? What’s that acclimation process to being part of a crew or being a sales manager. If you, you know, if you if you pop the promotion, but it’s a sideways move from one company to the other, and you walk in to being in charge of a group, or you hire on new, and you got to figure it out.

Absolutely. Right. And in this topic kind of came from, you know, how long do you give somebody to figure out if they’re going to be successful or not, you know, how much time do you invest? How much training how much hand holding him, you know, how do you how do you know you given someone the full length?

But there’s a reverse side of every coin that we talked about guys here, because if we’re saying how much time do we give somebody if you’re real new to sales? How much time do you have?

Oh, that’s, that’s super true, right? Because a lot of people want to put you on super low base. So that way, you’re hungry to go out and get the commission. And then, you know, you can only live on a super low base for so long, especially if you you know, take a pay cut to move into a position or something along those lines.

Or how do you work your deal, even if you’re new and make sure that you Guaranteed because I understand them in, you know, just shooting from the hip. There’s a couple of ways to do it. Sometimes you get a big starting salary, but you’re expected so much that you never it’s hard to achieve, or is it better to hang back, work on less but get more on commission, right, your base is lower, but you have less pressure because they only pay you on your progress. So it’s a double edged sword when you get that big, juicy salary, right? Because the time is ticking versus taking maybe a lesser salary with more of a bonus commission.

Okay, so let’s talk about that though. Because Do you think that between those two options that one will get you more time?

There’s one that fits me the best. Which is? I want no money, but I want all the reward of the money that I earned.

Okay, so you like…

I completely agree.

Okay, so both of you like 100% Commission, deals,

I don’t want to deal I think I don’t want a ceiling. I want it. I want have complete potential. It’s all on me. Not on not based on what someone’s gonna cap me on, you know, they Well, you’re going to make 250,000 Well, if I do that I want to have the opportunity to make 450,000.

Because Nan is correct. I know. In in my arena people who are strictly commission, you get lazy about 250 I said $250,000 alright motherfuckers and I say that with like complete contempt for you and respect for the guys who do that, but I know guys who make 700 K, right?

Not everybody, not everybody does but what Al is saying, you have to check yourself.

Not against very technical, very long processes like maybe Clint’s and maybe in other technical arenas, you know, if it’s a long sales process, I think a salary is warranted particularly as you make a sideways and if you can’t drag any of your business with you.

It also goes to what your company’s potential is, right? Because we talked about this a previous episode of that higher commission structure versus salary. And yeah, you know, I’ve been in organizations where you give me this great commission plan, but we’re only going to be able to do a certain volume, true, you know, through healthy growth in the company. So you’re talking about, yeah, 750 k is very possible in 15 years when we’re at this marketing level. And if we’re not there today, then that’s not enticing for me. Pay me for my worth.

I hate when someone is trying to poach you and they’re not honest about like, real, realistic expectations.

Usually not. Yeah, that’s the key, right is they’re not lying. They’re giving you the math problem that works out. What they’re not giving is the actual details of how long it would actually take to get there.

So I have to stop you. So it’s almost like the multi level marketing. In real corporations and not that multi level marketing is not real because it is. It’s not brick and mortar so it’s the easiest you know you know if you want x if you want to go to sales and you still have a real a regular job yeah I’m not knocking multi level marketing, it’s just the smoke and mirrors that exists in a lot of corporations out there.

Oh yeah, I was working at at&t and making pretty good money for for being a retail salesperson, I was making well 70 or so. And,

That’s more than I paid you.

Yeah, that’s true.

I don’t feel bad for that statement, I’m like surprised right.

No, I mean, I mean, I was good.

You made some serious cash before you came to see me.

Yeah, I was pretty good. And

How did you stay with me so long?

You painted that picture that Clint was talking about.

My bad. Sorry, my apologies bro.

And, and and someone came in I told him a phone they come back the next day and say hey, and I said How was the phone okay is you know were you stuck or something and they they said no, I just really liked how you handle the interaction. looking to see if you want to make a change. I was like, Well, I’m pretty happy but you know, I’ll take your card, we can have a call. And it was someone from Chase Bank. And and I said, Look, here’s the deal. I make pretty good money here, you know, for being 26 years old and you know, not having a degree and everything else. I was doing pretty good. Agree and and no prospecting and no cold calling. I mean, they just walk in and talk to you exactly right. Yeah. And and she goes, you’re gonna make the same money didn’t ask me how much I made. just told me I’m gonna make the same money, but you’re gonna have Sundays off. And you don’t got to worry about retail blackout. And I was like, oh. What’s retail blackout? So retail blackout is the thing that happens in retail, that you cannot take any vacation between Thanksgiving and Christmas. And so I get super excited, right? I’m, you know, young enough to just take this woman at her word, and I go through the hoops and get this job over at Chase and the starting salary was $32,000, right.

Well, not to mention, it’s kind of probably the first time you’ve really been recognized for your time. talents at that point. So it feels good. Yeah, go finally somebody recognizing all this hard work that I put in right. Now I’m getting recognized, a little bit, you know.

You stepped into a topic that we talked about earlier, negotiation. And I didn’t do any of that. I don’t know if we’re going to do that now. But that is very important.

I didn’t know and a little anecdote about the story was on the day of the on the day of the interview, my garage door sensor was not lined up, right. So like it would go down a little bit and then go back up, go and I’m like, I’m gonna be late for this interview. I’m gonna blow this opportunity. And I’ll be working at at&t for forever, and this is going to be miserable. And I got so mad. I turned around and I punched a hole in the wall, right? Which is not normal for me. I’m not I’m not that. I’m not that easy to anger. I’m not Clint. Oh, that sounds way better. So something just changed. But Thanks, Paul. I thought I was in an ocean. I punched this hole in the wall and then I fix the sensors and then I go and I’m and I’m fine, I get the job. And then like four or five days They put me kind of in the hood right I’m

Chase in the hood? My daughter banks at Chase.

This was right after Chase bought all the WaMu’s, right, so there’s a bajillion different locations. And I was at the one over by Ridglea Country Club, so I’m thinking this is going to be awesome. I’m right by the Country Club. Well, if your country club living, you don’t get to deal with someone like me. You get to work with a private client banker which I am not, so that left just the other end of the spectrum to work with you know, and

Nothing wrong with that, they have money.

Hey, some of them, and it was not a great experience and I was pretty miserable and I never fixed the hole in the wall because it was just like a this reminder reminder bad mistakes. Hey, some things don’t happen for a reason.

Garage door should have stayed down, I should have missed that. Exactly.

I should have stayed where I was.

You don’t do like I do and hang the perfect size picture over it, even though it doesn’t make sense on the wall at all.

Is that why I see so many photos on the walls? So many? Right?

That’s the only reason why Clint has pictures of his kids on the wall.

When I go to your house and start moving them all to see where the holes are.

Why do you have a picture of yourself three foot off the ground?

My kids were little once.

So yeah, so you know you get poached and this person probably got a referral for bringing me into the company, you know. And they just told me what I wanted to hear. It was it was not unlike when I joined the army and I got told everything I wanted to hear from the recruiter. “It’s just like college but with drill sergeants.” That’s literally what somebody told me.

Yeah, that’s a misrepresentation, that you should have seen coming.

Yeah. Once again, I’ve not always been the smart.

That’s why it’s a “college means?” question.

So yeah, so got into their realized I wasn’t super happy and then made a move. But it was rough. It’s really rough. Right because I had made a significant pay cut to go down to go do this thing right and wasn’t happy and was kind of stressed out and this is before the kiddo So,

So my quick question, sure you’re making 70 they bring you in and about half of that. So what was the potential that you saw in that whole arena financially, to square you with where you were leaving? I understand no Sundays, no retail blackout. But go ahead.

It was much more about that, honestly, the quality of life, that was super important to me, because at the time, I was training in Kung Fu, at the and that was my big lever. I wanted to be able to go do that. Go do more of that. And because of the hours in and retail that was hard and having to work on Saturdays and Sundays, it was hard. And that was the biggest motivator was because I was prioritizing kungfu over money because at the time, I wasn’t really thinking about 70 k as 70 k. It was just the money that I was making and I should be able to make this anywhere, which was a mistake.

How quickly did you think you were going to be out to double or even more than that, increase your salary to, I mean?

So, the way that it works at at least whenever I was there was very partner driven right. So you’re not supposed to really sell much of anything. Like I open accounts and I do credit cards and stuff like that, but investments go to someone else, mortgage goes to someone else, which sounds like a really great idea but if you have a partner who can’t shut the front door, then it’s kind of all for not, right so I was…

So you were partnered with somebody would take and push them to other avenues in the bank? Exactly if we if we were sitting down, you were stuck with just pack passbook savings account, setting up accounts and doing that.

Exactly. I’m the first line of defense and and during this time, Chase was kind of known for this thing about work in the lobby. So anyone who worked who walked in, they got full court press. Hey, man, how’s your day going today? Why don’t you come sit down with me. Let’s go over your information. Make sure that you’re still using all the right banking products. We’ll have someone else handle the transaction for you. So that way I can pull up your accounts figure out what’s going on. And people hated it so much. You would have these people come in and they were just holding their their like head up, like blinders. All my information is correct. I don’t really want to talk to you because they just want a handle their business and get get out of their. Miserable.

Sounds like a car dealership.

Yeah, if you’d walk in, and there’d be four of us all sitting right there go like, Hey, can you handle my? Oh, well, I’m not a teller. But let’s go sit down, and I’m going to try to sell you this credit card.

So as a C, that seems really weird that you would have done that.

I liked it because it was going to allow me to get my, my investment licenses, so that way I can get paid on the referrals because I like this idea initially of Oh, awesome. I’m gonna have people who know more than me, which is a huge thing as a C. So that way, I don’t have to learn it or know it as inside and out as they do. I can just say, Oh, you’ve got some really big balances. You know, have you ever thought about doing anything more? Exactly.

Yeah, leaving on sideline.

Yeah. And I love that right and doing the same thing with mortgages because this was in 2010. So, you know, the mortgage market was still like kind of coming back and, you know,

interest rates were low. Yeah, absolutely. resurgence as we as we came out of the dip.

Yeah, going up with Sure. And I just thought they did a really good job of selling it. Right? You know, everything you do, or at least whenever I was there, you got a point value. So if I set someone up for online banking, I got 25 points. And if I opened an account that was a new account for a new household.

It is multi level marketing.

It kind of was.

All a point system. Love it.

So I did that for a year. And then there was kind of this mass exodus from everyone moving from Chase to this other kind of regional bank.

Wells Fargo?

No, not Wells Fargo.

Fucking joke. Yeah, run if you’re with Wells Fargo, and I hope I get sued. Bunch of fucking crooks. Go ahead.

Alright, so that was Doc Al that said that.

Exactly. Check it out. Bring it.

So they did. They did a really good job. And I was just looking for the change because the thing about AT&T, and this is kind of how it works at most cultures, right? It’s very much what have you done for me lately? Right. And so I don’t I was consistently you know, top world One or two in the store, you know, hitting all my accelerators and getting really good commission checks and everything else like this. And then I had one month. And the regional manager was like, what happened to John? And I’m like, well, you just had a bad month. And my manager was trying to like, stand up for me. And she was like, and all sudden, I start getting cold shoulder, started getting ignored, started doing all these things.

After one month? That’s crazy!

Let me ask you something, if you wouldn’t have excelled if you’d have been, let’s say number four. And that was the norm for you to have that low month, would you have had the same recognition and like, would they have that would they have busted you down for that?

No.

I see that a lot, right? There’s there’s performers that perform at this level, and they’re always your number one sales guy, and then when they have a dip, you’re like, what the hell happened to that guy?

Well, there’s so much more pressure, right? Because you are, that’s what I’m saying, sort of a workhorse.

That number four that you got that’s always performing at that lower level. And, and then he has a bad month. It’s like he’s a bad salesman. He’s kind of Let them slide. Yeah, he’s C team will not make. But yeah, people let them slide. And it’s an interesting culture that people create around sales teams.

Well, it just means that you’re not really coaching your your team very well. I think it’s what it really leads to

Definitely not doing it right. You’re absolutely just kind of letting letting it happen, letting one guy kind of run it all, which usually, my experiences, I’ve seen that a lot, you know, one guy’s your, your front runner, and then everybody else is kind of filling in those little gaps. Yeah.

And I had a good manager at at&t and I had a terrible manager at at&t. And then the regional manager was just kind of always bad and, but it really kind of clued me in because the first manager who was terrible, was a stickler on certain things. But that was just because he wanted to be able to sit in the back and just kind of watch us on video. So he would send us an email and said, Hey, I saw this client just walk in and no one like looked up and said, Hello. What are you guys doing? It’s like, why aren’t you out here?

That’s called a bird dog. What a what a bird dog? In construction it’s terrible right? That’s that guy that sits you know sits in his truck eating a sandwich is like hey, you over there, oh, get over, get over there and do that. Is that a thing? Yeah, bird dog. Interesting. So so from your truck or sitting alone or you see it all the time on like highway jobs or be a guy sitting in a lawn chair, pointing fingers eating a sandwich. What are we paying you for? So going back to your move to like the banking industry outside of retail. How long did you want give yourself but was there any agreements up front that, hey, we’re going to give you six months to really see what you do and dive into this or?

No, actually, and it was kind of interesting because the first three months of studying for your licenses. And if you missed if you missed that test by one point, you’re fired, just out the door, which seems like a very weird thing to do, right because they give you a sign-on bonus, you know, to move over there and everything else. And then if you if you fail the test by one point, you’re out the door. And it happened to a bunch of people that I that I was in class with.

But it’s called failing, right?

It is called failing, right? But at one point?

Or 10, isn’t it sort of the same?

Um, I guess that depends upon the lens you’re looking at it through.

Then, then what about two points? If you give one, then what about the next one?

I think there’s something to be said for the character of the person. Right?

I don’t disagree. So.

So because there was a guy who got hired on at the same time as I did, he was a he was a he was a black knight in the army, right, which is the Army’s professional paratrooper team, they, they, they parachute into like a Super Bowl, sure, and he filled it. You got to get a 72 to pass and he got a 71 and they’re like, Hey, you Sorry, you’re out. And that dude, he was brand new. This is his first job, like after transitioning out of the military, and was working his ass off, didn’t know anything about anything and it was really in there every day and missed it by one. You’re not going to, you’re not going to give that guy another chance.

So okay, so what about the female with three kids? And you know, I mean, where’s the cut off guys? At a certain point, I mean, I understand compassion.

Well, standards are important. I’m not going to say that they’re, of all people I know. I mean, as the C, I love standards and I love clear expectations, but

Failure is failure, right?

Yeah. Oh, it goes back to nothing against coming back rehiring trying, again, going to another company sitting the tests through them, right. It’s not the end of the world. This is, Chase is not the only No, not at all right. So it’s not like you locked him out of an industry. Now. You might even saved him from a lot of heartache.

That goes back to a winning culture that you created and especially as a leader, right you we talked about this quite a bit outside of this, but did you give him all the tools that he needed to pass the test? Did you help him along the way? Did you try to make him successful so that when he does become part of your team full time, because he passed the test, he’s got everything he needs to go kill it for it, right. And that’s something that as in a culture that we’re trying to create a winning successful culture for, for both sides right, not just as a leader, but also on the sales floor for their own bank account. Right? Yeah, because they’re commission driven or, you know, trying to prove a salary that they that you given them. All those things come into play when you when you really invest, I say invest, but you invest all the tools, you know, to give your team or, or even yourself, right, if you’re not investing yourself, you’re failing already. So you got to go in every day, and you got to know that. All right, this is step one, and I gotta kill it at step one to get to step two. And so kind of what we’re talking about today is an interesting topic. Because how long is that? If you had to put a timeframe on it, how long you bring in a new guy or you take over a new role? How long do you give yourself and how long do you give your team before you say, Okay, this just isn’t working. I’ve given you all the tools I’ve tried, you’re not accepting it or you’re just not good at it right? Because that can happen. You’re just this is not your world. How long do you give? I mean, I’m interested in all three of you guys.

I personally think you have to see progression pretty quickly, not in all areas. But potentially, there needs to be movement in the right direction, where they’re actually bringing something to the table. But that is predicated on you as a leader, teaching them. You can’t just like throw people out into a field and not tell them, give them direction, like you’re talking about, leading is really important.

So I have a question for you. With the internet, all all the information we have available about every industry, I mean, I could look up everybody’s industry, right? I could I can learn the lingo. Exactly. The vocabulary is there, but then also the matrix of successes are there as well. Right? What is what’s a what’s a good matrix on this particular business model? And then guys, it’s not osmosis, man, you just can’t sit there like a warm bucket of spit. Expect this stuff.

Is that what you think I just said?

No, I think that sometimes we get caught up in. It shouldn’t be this hard. Right or I don’t have to Yeah, I think we fail ourselves more than the system fails us.

I agree with that, I mean there’s no doubt that good people truly good people are going to go and learn their craft on their own time whether anybody gave them the tools or not, right that’s…

And that’s easier now that it has been.

It’s not like you had to wait for the foreman to clue you in. Yeah, because there was this company in this town or it was a long leap to go anywhere else.

So if that’s true, then why do we need Clint? Why does Clint need to be at his station?

We don’t!

What a great question.

Clint’s about to leave.

In his circumstance…

Come back with she’s ? Come on. I’m just saying it’s okay to stay.

Alright. So

I just think it’s really important to have a leader for the men that are under you, men, women, I don’t know, who your team is.

Well, some people, some people respond to that better for myself. I always, you know, look at myself from outside looking in as a solo performer. I don’t, it’s great if I have the leadership a really good leader, but they have to perform at that level that I expect.

That’s the answer. The answer is effort. Are they putting effort in or are they kicking back going, Okay, now, what’s the next step?

But the flip side of the coin like Doc, so it’s and there’s always a flip side is that there’s people that won’t be self driven, and they need somebody to tell them every step of the way. And my thing is, is that if that’s the team that you’ve inherited, or that’s what you’ve hired, then you’ve got to live in those parameters that you’ve got you.

Well, let’s talk about that. Because I think our

Let’s add a dynamic you you get hired in and you’re your sales team leader is a jerk or lazy or expects more out of his team. And he wants to sit in back eating a sandwich.

Yes. So let’s go back a little bit because when we when we were talking about this topic, Clint said something that a culture is like the new buzzword, you know, and that it’s something that he’s been hearing about a lot. And in my reading, because I do probably more reading about like tech and startups than the three of you. Sure. I mean, not from like an investment side. I mean, I’m sure from like, like investing and things like that you’re probably way better read than I am. But as far as like, building a company in the culture and the everything that goes along with that, I think I’m probably more, better well read. Is that the right way to say this?

Should we arm wrestle over this?

Maybe, I don’t know. We can fight if you want.

That would mean I get my pay face punched . Yeah, go ahead. I’ll take a pass on that one. Thank you, John. Thanks for the invitation, John, but I’m not interested.

I’ll lock the door.

I say that because Al and I…

Hold on, did I tell you you’re on the payroll. Oh, all right, John now I feel more comfortable.

Al and I trained at the same school for a very long time.

Me being the junior student, if you hadn’t figured that one out.

So, but in sales there’s kind of one culture that everyone talks about right that that sink or swim, figure it out on your own because that’s how everyone else did it and things like that. And it’s not inclusive or welcoming or nurturing at all. It’s just very cutthroat.

I’m okay with that.

You’re okay with it?

No, not okay with that. But what if that’s what it is? I think I’ve done okay in those arenas. Okay. Yeah. So quit fucking crying. It’s where you land guys?

Well, no, I get that right. But it’s not always you don’t you don’t you don’t know everything you don’t know though.

So that’s a, you know, talking about DISC here. That’s a very our side of the spectrum.

Absolutely. It is very gut driven. So… I hate that.

Doc and I live in that realm, that you throw me and I’m betting on you’re betting on me and I have to bet on me. I’m good with that.

I’m an S, and I actually like that.

And I’m not saying that usually comes natural, right?

We just said the polar opposite of that, though. Right? You said it yourself? Did we give them all the tools? Oh, listen, listen, this is a manager

No, listen, listen, he’s a manager now. What now hold on, what I’m what I’m saying is is that the current culture that I see, that’s that you have to do that if you want to make that. If you can’t just cut everybody’s head off tomorrow and fire everybody and hire exactly who you want. And you’re dealt a hand that you have to deal with. Yeah, then you have to develop that leadership culture of, you know, really driving, did I give them all the tools to give, but when you’re talking about just me performing in an arena, you hire me and you say, Oh, I’m not giving you any knowledge. Just go kill it for me. I’m okay with that personally, that’s that’s what we’re talking about.

Or you come into

I think we’re talking about two different things though.

We are we are so you’re talking about The culture of a sales organization. Yeah, I’m talking what doc and I were talking about, I believe I’ll speak for myself here. But if you’re asking me to come into a new job, a new industry, and you’re not I don’t have that good culture, I don’t have that leadership and you’re just letting me bet on me to win and put food on my own table. I’m good with that. Because I know I’m deep down. I’m gonna win. Okay, that doesn’t make it a good culture, John, that just makes it what it is. Okay. That’s what I’ms saying.

You’re not wrong. I mean, I agree…

I know I’m not wrong.

Did you really just say that to Mr. D over here?

I agree with what you’re saying, right? And now because of the work that that I’ve done, right, and where I’m sitting now you can put me in any role and I’m going to I’m going to do fine right? I mean, if I went back to work for Al which, you know, sorry, man, I wouldn’t do, nothing against you. I just don’t want to be in that industry again.

I’m not hiring.

Good. I would I would do fine. If I went back to banking, I would do fine, but it’s because of all this. All this auxiliar work that I’ve done that, arguably, the culture is not as important. I think once you’re, once you’re a high performer.

That’s the question at hand, right? It’s like how, how do you develop the culture? If you need to? How long do you give everybody if you’re developing a culture, because culture to me is process in this realm?

So you just hit on something, if you understand the process, what are we selling? My question? Right? Because I know I’m going to follow the same principles that got me to where I’m at today. In any given arena, whether it’s what you’re doing, Clint. What you’re doing, right, John? Yeah. And Nannette, you know, are what we do, right. It is a process it I mean, it follows the same pattern every time, I think with the same usual suspects, right? Yeah. along the way.

Well, you’re not gonna you’re not going to create a failing culture. That’d be kind of stupid, right? No, you’re not going to try. Exactly.

But some companies have

Sure. But you’re not going to start setting up processes and you know, putting things in play for it all to fail. That would be silly. Well, but no, right. So let’s not saying it won’t fail. What I’m saying is that you don’t go with the intention to make it fail.

Well, noone’s intending to fail.

I know. but hear me out. So you’re creating this culture, with processes to be successful at the end, and you’re going to adapt them and you’re going to change them. Right? No,

No.

Continue.

So if you’re creating a culture for success, then you’re creating processes within that culture to succeed down the road. Right. My question, I think what we’re trying to get out of this is that when you start putting those processes in play, they’re all going to change a month goes okay, that didn’t work when you switch tactics, hopefully, hopefully, yeah. And I think that’s where the failure comes in is when you don’t right you just let it ride.

Well, but hold on, though. I don’t think that most people if you’re not a C, love the idea of Hey, listen to the process, and let’s make everyone say the same things and kind of all the same. Yeah.

Listen, I think everybody here every personality has a process whether you write it down and put it on a spreadsheet, doesn’t matter, you go in.

I think you should.

I mean, we all do because we we understand the importance of process but think about all the other people who are just winging it.

I hope they’re listening.

Winging is a process, winging it is a process.

I mean, a

Traditional sales is a process.

What are we actually trying to tell people out there? I mean, you know, we’ve talked amongst ourselves.

Yeah, I mean, it’s just about what, you know, culture, right? It’s the buzzword, right. So it’s like, a couple years ago, I heard partnerships, we want to partner with everybody. We want to be your valued partner. Didn’t make it wrong, right. didn’t make it a you know, not true statement. It just it was overly used in culture right now and in my world is being overused and what it all boils down to for me, when I hear that word is okay, you’re trying to create a process, a winning process. That’s what culture is to me. And you’re getting everybody to buy into that process, because it’s successful. So my question is, is When you start that process, you have to start it over. Like day, let’s just say day one, right? You come into an organization, they’ve been doing something for 15, 20 years. You come in now you’ve got to adapt this winning culture process. How long do you give that? before people look down on you, or people look up at you. And say, dude, this isn’t working.

Wait a second, but if you’re hiring into something you may not have you may not have the, you know, the ability to change much. You’re just along for the ride. But what if you did? If you come in, you know, in middle management, or do you come in as your winner, the last, you know where you were before, and now they expect you to sort of be a leader or a manager in a certain department. That’s a little bit different. Sure. So I mean, there are there are layers to the culture. And not everybody can influence the culture as much as maybe the layer above them and the layer above that. Yeah, right? In depends on the size of the company, for sure. I mean, there’s a lot of variables there when you start talking about culture,

Well, and part of that is knowing yourself.

All right? Well, let’s get specific then. Because if I, if I, if I hire If I hire if I hire a brand new salesperson that doesn’t, let’s just say knows nothing, right? We hired the salesperson because they have the potential to be something great because of their personality exams or what, you know.

So, right. So you see some potential.

You see some potential, you hire this person, and you start putting them into play in your process, but it’s just not working out. You’ve tried to give them the tools. You’ve helped them along the way whatever. Or maybe you didn’t, but how long do you I mean, I’m seriously asking is this six months is it a year?

You tell me, how long do you give them?

How long would you expect, you personally?

Six, six months in my in my industry? Okay, I’d like to see…

Because it’s interesting. I mean, the industry has something…

Because it’s lead time, right? Like I can’t ask a guy to go grab a job today, bid a job. Let the funding get approved through another Corporation. I mean, it’s minimum of six month turnaround. I mean, but to Nan’s point, she said something earlier that was really interesting. And I don’t need them to go make a their first sale in the first month, what I do need them to do is see that they’re working the process. So the progress there and diving into the culture is, is there’s a proof or there’s improvement along the way?

Well, that’s why the leading indicators are as an important measure as picture right so

well and I if if the say if you go in or your manager and your your people go in, and they’re they’re meeting their benchmarks of the number of touches you’ve assigned, or somebody shows up and says, You know, I got a new sales position. How many touches do I need? Because they look up the parameters of what does it take to make a sale and you run those numbers? Not, not, not with ambiguity, but with specificity of, here’s the leading guy I’ve had a conversation with him, I’ve gleaned a little bit of information. So some, really, you know, sales can be boiled down to, are you doing what you should do? And what you need to do to make the sale. for sure.

And I think it’s predicated on when you were talking about hiring someone, Are you hiring someone that’s new, they probably need a little more time. They their process.

No, if the process stands, they don’t need more time. They may need to sharpen the sword a little bit.

They don’t know anything about construction sales. And

But the point of it is, is that if you look back, true, like the way you say that if you look at the metrics, like Doc’s, and you look at those lagging indicators, right, that you say, all right, I typically people need to make 50 phone calls a day in order to make a cell at blah, blah, blah, you go through that cookbook, so to speak. You maybe have to look back and say okay, well you’re just not up to par. So you got to make if you want to make this you got to do 100 phone calls a day or 200 phone calls a day. Exactly. And then it comes to the leadership roll where you’re saying, dude, it’s not scalable for you to do 300. So

You got to adjust it.

Okay, so I got to your point, 200 bad phone calls is the same as 150 bad phone calls, agreed, right? So there’s a there’s a, there’s an art to selling. And then there’s the mechanics of selling your art, right? If you’re a great artist, you still have to do the mechanics. Because nobody knows until you pick up the damn phone or get in front of a client. Right? Sure.

Right. And we’re

So I’m saying, those are the two dynamics, look at those separately. All right, how good am I at what I do? And then how good am I at doing what I should do?

You have to have failure. You have to have done it.

We we fool ourselves every fucking day about both of those issues. We either think we’re better than we are. Or we think we’re we know we’re really good, but we think we do more work than what we do.

I want to give you guys T shirts from my company because this is what I do with my clients, right? Is I’m trying to figure out, what are the A players doing that the B and C players are not? How do we systematize alll of that? Yeah. Because I’m, I’m here to tell you, most people don’t have a process, right? And you and you got one guy over here doing it this way. And three guys over here doing it this way. And no one understands why they’re not performing at the level they want to be. So, but to back up real quick, because if you’re just starting out listening to us, you might not know what lagging and leading indicators are good, right? Because most companies just focus on the lag revenue, quotas sales. That’s all the data they have. Exactly, absolutely. But if you’re running around town, just framing on if I can get a yes from someone, right that you’re in for some emotional roller coasters. Right? Because you’re not going to get a yes from everybody I, we’re never as influential as we think we are. Yeah. But leading indicators are the things that you have to do to get the sales right cold calling networking asking for referrals, doing all these other things, right. So if you focus On the leading indicators, then you can say, hey, Nannette, you might need to do 25 phone calls to get to a decision maker conversation and Al needs to be 50. Right? And you can, you know, sorry, not No, no, it’s a good analogy. But the, there’s gotta be some appreciation for the person. So that way you can like another person, every person. Yeah. Right, because you got to work with the end in mind, which is your favorite saying. So if I know that the goal is to get $250,000 in sales for the year, how many how many deals do I need to do to get to that amount? How many calls Do I need to get to to one deal? Absolutely. Right. And then you just figure, extrapolate that, just figure out the math from there. But that’s that’s looking at the leading indicators and not the lag. So if you’re new to sales, you’re not familiar with this idea. Go figure out your numbers about what it takes to get to a close deal, because that will alleviate some pressure. It did for me anyway.

Yeah, changed my whole world. When I was able to pull up well, and before he before I even go into this, you have to track all the data first. Absolutely. That’s step one.

Stop hiding stuff from your CRM. I don’t understand I, I’ve got a buddy. So I’m the CRM guy anyway. But I have a friend, and he, he won’t even put stuff into his CRM unless he thinks it’s real. I’m like, what is real mean? He’s like, well, it means have a realistic chance of closing it was like, then you have no idea what your percentages are. You don’t know how many people you have to talk to.

Because he’s leaving his his forward thinking value undocumented?

Well, but but here’s the problem, because this company is only concerned about how many leads to how many close deals he gets, which is not a metric that in my opinion, anybody should be worried about.

He puts His leads in and it ruins his metrics. Yeah. And he’s worried about that. Right? So then, so then tell him to go fuck off, right? I got 100,000 leads, but I’m still outperforming everybody in here, right?

That doesn’t, Al, you’ve worked for yourself for a long time. It doesn’t really work that way in larger companies.

Oh, it doesn’t? My bad. Horrible Yeah, horrible!

So you want these people to use this. And they use Salesforce in his company, which is a very expensive CRM, and they make everyone use it, but there’s no real standardization about how they’re supposed to use it. But…

So you can fudge the numbers pretty easily.

Exactly right? I was gonna say the numbers for know that you’re on either side, then it ruins your leading indicator, absolutely doesn’t help you make more money doesn’t help your company with any value.

And then you’re just walking around with this weight because some manager in this company is just looking at how much you putting in the CRM with no other accountability or goals or anything.

And that douchebag never picked up a tab ever, like at a bar.

Well, it’s probably the guy that, you know, his CFO said, Hey, why are we paying? Let’s say 70 grand a year for this thing that you guys aren’t using it? He says okay, well, everybody go use it.

Yeah, let’s use it and document your chatter.

Yeah, here’s all my stuff. And and then that may be the extent of it and I think that happens.

Oh, it happens all the time. There’s a reason why sales reps to hate CRM’s.

Alright, so this for example in my in my own business right now in my own company, we are not currently using a CRM in the last month because it hasn’t been used for so long right? And baby steps right so I’m trying to dig back in it’s like, okay if these guys are going to fudge all the numbers and it’s going to give me bad data because nobody’s ever held them accountable before, then I don’t need those numbers. Exactly, yet. Yet. I will need them and we will have a lot of that absolutely.

I was gonna say, how’re you gonna get around that?

But it’s it’s your leadership capital to use the Jocko thing right? If you make everything a big deal then nothing’s a big deal correct? Right?

That’s right So for right now in this first month and we’ve talked about milestones and stuff and right right now we’re not using this right now we’re using a you know, Outlook calendar to track some stuff because as baby steps and getting people used to putting information in.Because if I truly use, especially the CRM that we have, which is, I mean, you can do anything that a CRM can do with this thing. And it’s very intensive. But the information input is a lot of time and a lot of resources. And if you haven’t done it for a long time, there’s no data to go off of anyway. So absolutely. I’m in kind of a situation right now where it’s like, all right, just baby steps. Let’s just get stuff. I don’t even care if you write it down in your notebook, so that our weekly meeting that’s our CRM for now,

I was gonna say a lot of times sharing it doesn’t have to be anything other than tracking as long as you touches or prospects or letting I know, I know, I’m saying baby steps. I’m where you’re going.

But there’s a lot of people that are that they just want to fly just under the radar. Right? And so if they’re not putting their information in the CRM, they’re not tracking their numbers, but they’re, they’re just, I’m doing okay, I’m in the middle of the pack, I can hide. There’s a ton of people that are that are fitting into that realm. They don’t like the CRM because it just

Should they really be in sales if that’s the way you wake up and go to your work? Shouldn’t you fucking jump off the first bridge you pass on the way to work?

Didn’t we just get in trouble for making light of suicide?

Oh, Dr. Sales Kevorkian 101, right here.

We’re not actually advocating that anybody jumps off a bridge.

Unless you really you really need to, right, and you got a big insurance policy right and your wife makes a ton of money and the note that the kids don’t like you anyway, so anyway, that’s that harsh language.

That’s a 15 second bleep for Al.

My bad guys, sorry, let’s sing, let’s sing Kumbaya.

Hearts and minds, brother. Hearts.

But the what it should be used as as a coaching implement a coaching tool, hey, right, because if we have a

manager who’s smart and says, and then, agree.

But but for the not manager, the actual sales person and so forth. On the daily grind it’s a it’s a daily it’s your daily checklist. I sure, what do I need to do today?

And I was about to go there too because I mean it. So from a manager managerial standpoint, you’re just looking for a point of contact to the sales force as to what do you got going on? What’s happening? How can I help? I mean if you really are the guy who says I want you making a ton of money, because you won’t go anywhere and I want you happy as hell because you won’t go anywhere.

I want my sales team pulling up in Ferraris everyday. oh yeah man I

have not a problem if you show up going throwing money in the air right?

I hope it’s that way.

So why not?

I hope it is because if it is true.

Then we’re all good. We’re all we are all so fucking golden. We can’t see straight.

So in in one of my companies, I play salespeople for part time work with agency owners who’ve got good leads coming in

and tell us about that. I mean, throw shout out for everybody who’s out there. Yeah, do it!

It’s called Clutch Closers.

And we’ll talk more about that though. We need to do that. But

The the more interesting thing, in my opinion is, is everybody I talked to is like, Hey, what’s your expectation for close rate? And I said, I don’t care what your close rate is, I just want you to have a two call process, right. And I and I give them a process. And then my, my, my biggest metric that I’m looking at is, if people are qualified to get to the second call, which is the presentation call, how many of those are you closing? Because if that’s a low number, you’re not qualifying very well, and that’s the thing we need to go work on. Yeah. Right. Because in my world, if, if, if I qualify, somebody qualify hard, exactly. And then I give a proposal presentation, whatever you want to call it, like I close 70 to 75%. Right? And I don’t need you to be there. But if it’s 30, that’s bad. But then I’m trying to build this culture around, hey, if it’s there, let’s go figure this out. I don’t, I’m not going to fire somebody over that.

So when do you go back and decide it’s springs a point my mind. When do you decide that it’s not the process but the salesperson? Or is the process not the salesperson?

Well, so I’m a technical guy, as we’ve talked about, right? So every call gets recorded. And then I’m going. So I kind of have office hours, right? Because I have this, I have another company, and then I have this other one. And so I kind of got a portion of my time at all or No, not really. And so I have office hours, right? So if you’re stuck if you keep getting the same, like questions and objections or things like that, like I just make myself available. We’ll do call breakdowns, role plays, whatever you want to do to make it better.

So you segment it out to figure out where the problem is?

And then a certain part of my time each week is going and listening to these calls and saying, are they taking the things that we’re talking about in the conversations? And are they actively using it because I’m willing to give somebody the benefit of the doubt and work with them and maybe too much honestly. If you are coachable and you’re making small improvements, right? So kind of, one of you two said it earlier, right? Yeah. If you’re making improvements, I don’t need you to be crushing it. I just want to see you improve. Or can you take the information that we’re talking about and implement it? Right? And that’s the same thing as the martial arts conversation, because nothing drives me more crazy than someone who comes up and says, Hey, I can’t figure out how to do this technique. Well, okay, do this and this and this, and they don’t do any of it. I just told you how to do it.

Well, and there’s a big thing there too, is if if you know if you’re doing it wrong, and you don’t try to get beyond that and do it, right. Yeah. So you’re just gonna sit here in the same class and, and throw the punches the wrong way for eternity? I mean, what’s what’s what, yeah,

Yeah, until somebody slaps you in the face. I mean, sometimes it’s all about sure you hadn’t been in a fight recently, a little pain pain returns.

So but here’s a big divider, I think between being gut driven and being fact driven, right. I can stop myself and think, well, maybe they need to hear from someone else. Maybe just the way that I’m explaining. It doesn’t make any sense. And they’re not getting to that aha moment. Because we’ve seen that at at the kung fu school, right? You know, I’d explain something. They wouldn’t get it. Someone else would explain it and that would be like lights on. Okay, so there is something for the right teacher for the right student.

I’m that guy.

Well, that’s the whole thing. Exactly.

Yeah, absolutely right because I’m gonna overtalk and give you all the details and Clint doesn’t want any of that stuff.

Just do it once, get out of the way. Let me try.

Yeah, can I punch him? Yes. Okay. So my thing is, Are you are you progressing? Are you getting better because if not, and you’re telling me you are or if you got some ego or something, then I don’t have any time for that. But I’m willing to work a lot with someone who is like really eager to improve and in eager to put in the time, right and I get that from you. Right because you have your statement that you don’t fire anybody they fire themselves.

Yeah, only lying and stealing and that’s the only

are you

I’m always expendable man. I I say that to myself every day.

And that’s that’s how Think about it, right? Because my goal for Clutch Closers is you know, to give salespeople a laboratory so that we can go work on the hard stuff. You know, it’s not it’s like your main pipeline. It’s self fulfilling, right? Because there’s leads in the end, these agency owners are doing everything that they need to do. So I just want to put you in a lab so you can work on the hard stuff, the stuff that you don’t feel comfortable doing with your main pipeline, because it’s tied to your main income. So this is a place for you to practice.

So talking culture that sounds to me, even myself, that sounds like a fantastic culture that I would want to be a part of at the top or the bottom, right. Coming in new.

But I can’t afford you.

No doubt. Have to sell one of them companies, buddy.

Wait a second. What’s minimum wage?

Oh, so here’s, here’s my deal. The way that I do Clutch Closers is that everybody is commission based only. And the reason why I do that is because I also don’t allow anyone for the for them to make Clutch Closers their their full time gig, because I feel like the minute you have that in your commission base, you’re going to feel that pressure and you start bringing on bad deals. I don’t want any part of the talked about that. We have talked about that.

Yeah. Last episode. Yeah, there is that we learned pretty hard.

Yeah, there has never been a moment in my life where the pipeline has gotten deeper, and I’ve gotten more anxious. It just hasn’t ever happened.

In my experience, especially in my business because of the long lead times, right? The six, seven months, maybe even 18 months lead time on a project. The worst thing you can do is have a starving sales guy bring in a bad 10 month lead. Yeah, right that I’m going to work on for 10 months and you tell me all this is qualified, and I work on it. And then it turns out, they were you using somebody else the whole time.

But you’re telling me you wouldn’t pick up in 10 months, a bad lead?

It’s even happened to myself.

Let’s think about the sales managers when there’s no CRM and you have a pipeline, and you got five guys in there and they’re like, man, I got this one deal, boss, and it’s going to close. It’s gonna be awesome. It’s gonna be this. And then you don’t know if you’re getting told the truth or not. I mean, hopefully

Happened to me, happened to me last week to me on Tuesday. Hey, I’ve got I got this awesome lead. Okay, cool. Tell me about it. Well, it’s, you know, look, this guy is he’s good friend of mine, you know, he’s got all this and like he’s hitting all the great buzzwords that I want to hear. And I just said, Okay, well, let’s develop this a little more, you know, let’s go. Let’s go talk to him. You don’t mind him and ask him some tough questions get him through this process. No problem. So when we finally met, and I asked one question, Hey, is this a Is this a cocktail napkin? Or is this real deal? like are we actually going to… well right now I’m just it’s in my head and I’m trying to like so yeah, he went from this is going to close and this is going to be our first quarter revenue, this is happening, due to it. I don’t even know if I could ever get funding for this.

So I just went back. So how long did it take you to get there? Half a day. Exactly. When you said seven months I said you’re not standing and said what I’m saying no, you to be sad. I mean, you bring to the fucking table.

I’m surprised it took you half a day, honestly.

Well, because I was I had meetings

Because you stay on top of stuff.

What I’m saying is that sometimes, you know, you get bought into your own process where it’s like I’ve, they’ve met all the points right now we’re moving forward. But that next move forward might be six or seven months down the road. That’s that long lead time. So right so sometimes you you hit all the hot points and things change in six or seven months.

So let’s go back to Yes, on the initial basis, you got your calling questions and you put your heart answers to it, then the rubber meets the road of the company has to start bringing stuff to you, then they gotta start showing you budget and the ability to pay or at least engage and make a commitment at this level. I mean, you you keep your finger on the pulse. And I understand you can go seven months and it still turns to shitshow.

I mean, you know, some some people that aren’t, you know, some people hit all those right questions and they, they book it in their forecast, right goes into sales CRM, you slide it to, you know, future, you’re forecasted, and now you’ve got that thing sitting in quarter three, you’re in quarter one, right, this thing sitting on quarter three. This is a homerun. You’re hoping, and you never touched base in that six or seven months or, or you just didn’t develop it.

And that’s hard.

It is. Yeah. And that’s the thing though, that that hurts is sales. Because what happened? What happens if that one job and this happens in my business a lot? What happens if that one sale in quarter three is 70% of the revenue right? And it just went away? Yeah. Oh, shit, but the problem is, is we feel it on the smaller level here too. But that only happens to everybody. But the thing is, is I don’t I can’t go back in time six months, you can’t get it back, and develop a new relationship for quarter three.

And that okay, that brings up a key point that, that our biggest, our biggest nemesis is time, right? relative to the sales process. Because you’re either on salary or commission and commissions are good, but they get they have to be sustainable. And so if you’re in that sales arena, literally the amount of time you spend qualifying it, I mean if it’s not wisely spent, then it comes back to haunt you back in the day, you know, as you go down the road.

So I think we’re going to continue this conversation in the next episode. Yeah, cuz I think there’s more to talk about.

I think it’s a good part two, I think we just start digging into some layers that are pretty good topics. And I mean, I’m, I’m learning, you know, I’m learning as much as anybody.

So we’re not going to do with throwdown, because we’re, we’ll do the throwdown at the end of an episode number two.

No, let’s do the throwdown right now. You want to do the throwdown right now? Absolutely. Because somebody some people may just insist and dislikes but yeah, let’s hit hit the buzz, we got a few minutes.

TeamD, what you got?

So talking about, we talked about a lot of things here. Right, thank you. I’m gonna I’m gonna hit on a couple of key points that I think that are really important, maybe because they’re front and center in my life right now. But the culture that you create and the leadership styles that you have, you know, speaking specifically to a D out there, it is is really tough for you to not want to throw all your effort and focus on the problem at hand because you think you can solve it, right? I know how to do this better than anybody. That’s why they hired me. So I’m going to go do that. But maybe you’re not in that position as a leader, right? So throwing all your efforts into the problem, you’re, you’re not creating that culture that you want everybody to buy into. All you’re doing is basically putting a plug in a in a big hole, right and just hoping that it holds for a while, like your gas tank, like my gas tank. We’ll talk about that later. Thanks, Houston.

There’s somebody responsible for that. We’re just still on. I hope he’s listening. If you’re out there, you’re fucked, man. Cuz we’re all for coming for retribution.

This, this idea that you you know, as, as a leader, you’re not going to give everybody a chance. You’re just going to cut cut until you find that person that fits. You can that’s a way right. People do that. And I guess there’s successful people out there that have done that. It’s probably not the most scalable, and it’s definitely not the the right way in my mind morally, to do something, right, you got to give people the right tools, the right training that they need, make sure you put your effort in. So when you do that first quarter review with them, you bring your employees in, and you sit in front of them, you know that you’ve given them all the tools and kind of going into your point, Doc, is like you fired yourself here, man. I gave you, I gave you everything that you needed. We were tracking, we’re doing all this stuff, you have all this information, and you just didn’t put it upon yourself or maybe you’re just not good at it. Right? And that’s a tough conversation to have. But the point is, is that can happen. So if you’re out there listening, take that. Take that D, take that ego and put it put it into the process of what you’re trying to develop. Right. Maybe you are the best. Make them the best too with your knowledge. Maybe that’s that maybe that’s the ticket.

Awesome. Al?

I see this as two scenarios. One you’re, you know, you’re moving from either being brand new or you’ve done some sales, you’re moving into a new team. Show up and perform right to, to show off your talents to your managers. Don’t get bogged down, understand the matrix of where you’re going, you know, the new sales routine or even if you’re just you know, waking up tomorrow, and you can try to do better on Monday than you did last week, wake up with that that new metric of what does it take to succeed? And what are my benchmarks and how do I define success? And then if you’re the sales manager, and you’re coming in, you’re trying to build that culture. Focus in on, you know, what does success truly mean to your staff? And how do you promote that success? And, you know, it’s a little weak, but, you know, I’ll leave it at that.

Okay. Nannette?

So I just think, you know, I talked about it all the time, effort, effort, that’s how you unlock your potential. You’re just stagnant. You’re not trying to improve each day. You will not Improve. I mean, you’re just going to be a failure. I’m afraid. I know that sounds terrible. But I also think that anyone can follow a process pretty much anyone, but you have got to be you have to be a leader. You it’s great to have a leader but you also need to be a leader to blaze that trail. You can’t just sit back and what and want someone else to step you through the process. So good, good process. I love that. But I do think it’s really important to be a blazer also, you know, really got get out there with effort and and succeed.

Awesome. For C’s, you’re gonna have a lot of questions and you want very clear expectations, and most people are not really great at doing that. Right? A minute ago, Al said show up and, you know, put in the work. Well, what does that work mean? You know, and for a C, you got to find that company that is going to allow you to ask those kinds of questions and get really clear, concise information, because that’s what you need to feel comfortable to go out and do the things that are outside of your comfort zone, because you’ve got really clear, detailed information about how to go do that and be successful. And if you’re not going to get that, then you probably need to make a change, because C’s don’t really want to figure it out on their own. They want to learn, they want to learn it from somebody else. And if you’re not getting that where you are, but you’re somewhat successful, you can make a change. You don’t have to stay at a company where where you’re not happy with the culture or happy with a manager. If you’re successful in sales, somebody needs you. So that’s all I got for the throwdown. So we’re going to continue with part two. And before we do that, if you’re listening to this, and you’re, you know, you’re not happy with your company culture, you know, someone else who’s in sales, but they’re not happy with their company. Send them this. Have them reach out to us everything is at Sales Throwdown. We’re going to start taking questions, more questions from the listeners. So that way we can have some fresh points of view and things so everything is at Sales Throwdown. If you want to take the assessment because you’re not sure where you are on this range, you might have a little bit of Al, a little bit of Clint, or you know, one of the other versions. No jokes, Al. Reach out to us, assessments@salesthrowdown.com, and we can get you hooked up. Thanks a lot, everybody.