Blog Archives

Are You A True Sales Professional?

bigstock-Young-salesman-on-business-tri-5981723

Selling has always been in my blood, and I became a sales rep for the first time in 1999. Since then, I have learned a “couple” lessons along the way performing several different roles. Sales reps sell products and/or services, and can make a good living. In addition to the standard responsibilities, true sales professionals achieve more success by taking their game to another level and have long, prosperous careers. Which one do you want to be?

Having a complete understanding of sales cycles, and mastering product knowledge is imperative for success. Most companies only focus on product training, because that is what everyone does. While others also give insight on sales processes from first greeting/meeting all the way through closing the sale.

That is where things get scary!  Many reps get a false sense of security that this is all they need to know to become successful. In reality, this knowledge only equips them to be “run-of-the-mill” sales reps. The world is full of “status quo lovers”. The following information will give you the potential to become a true sales professional and exceed goals for years to come.

#1 Consult, Don’t Regurgitate

Your job is to sell products and/or services, but people don’t like being sold to. How weird is that? The faster you learn that listening during a customer/prospect interaction is more important than speaking, you will be well ahead of the curve. When you become a consultant providing solutions to their current situation, success will follow shortly. Anyone can regurgitate information and spew it out. Just ask the student who memorized textbooks and got straight A’s, but could not cut it in their chosen profession.

#2 Share, Celebrate and Support

The “relationships” aspect of a sales team is critical to its overall success. You need to give unconditionally, and not be afraid to share ideas and concepts with each other.  I always love to share templates for presentations, bulletins that I distribute to customers or various ideas that help improve my territory.  If you can make your co-workers lives’ easier, why wouldn’t you? The good karma will come back some day. Celebrate each other’s victories, and don’t you dare get jealous if your colleagues get better results!  Put together recovery plans to improve ASAP.

Things don’t always turn out the way that we want them too, so be there to support each other when failure occurs. Keep communication lines open to move past bumps in the road. And last but not least, treat inside sales and support groups with the utmost respect! They are pivotal to the team’s overall success, and are not personal assistants.

#3 Manage Time, Plan and Prioritize

I underestimated the power of being exceptional in this area for a long time, and it affected my results earlier in my career. Planning a schedule as far ahead as a month or more makes things flow better. Putting emphasis on getting out of the office regularly at scheduled times keeps you on track. Paperwork and other less urgent items can be handled before or after prime selling hours. I once worked for a manager who stacked the sales rep’s desks in the warehouse to emphasize that he did not want them in the office for very long in the morning! An extreme action, but he made his point loud and clear.

I always make the disclaimer that priorities over-ride schedules with the following example. If you have a lunch booked with a prospect where the potential is unknown, and your largest customer has a crisis shortly before the appointment, what would you do? You have to understand who your biggest customers are, and the level of service that they need. By the way, do you spend 80% of your time with the 20% of your customers who buy the most? If not, it is time to adjust your schedule and give them the attention they deserve.

#4 Fly Under The Radar, Don’t Be “On It”

Early in my career I had a Sales Manager tell me that one of the best indicators if a rep was doing a good job, is if they rarely heard from the rep’s customers. Be very responsive to your customer’s needs, and take care of them in a timely fashion. If you need help, get it. Never blame others in your organization if they do not respond to you and a customer is left waiting. It is your responsibility to get things taken care of, no excuses!

Keep up to date on everything that your manager requests. It may be weekly call reports, inputting of sales calls and/or opportunities in to a CRM (customer relationship management) program, or general administrative items. Successful sales people always do what is asked of them, even if they don’t like to.

#5 The Path of “Most Resistance” Pays Dividends

Anyone can take the path of least resistance. It is easy to only deal with customers who have great relationships with you and your company, and only sign up prospects that there was little effort involved. But what about handling those difficult customers in your territory, or bringing on prospects where things were more challenging? From those clients, huge growth can occur. In one role I had, the previous sales rep stopped calling on a long-standing account because he was not getting along with the staff. Sales plummeted. From the time I came on board, it only took two years for the account to become the largest in my territory.

Over time, you will acquire “street-smarts” and know when to walk away from business, but more importantly when to move forward when the potential is right before you. Don’t hide behind email or text messaging when problems arise. Face-to-Face is still the best way to communicate, and sometimes you “have to take a punch” to make things right.

#6 Customers And Prospects Are Human Beings Too

It is easy to see through reps whose only agenda is to close sales as quickly as possible, with minimal effort. But the secret is to really get to know customers on a personal level, and make them feel important. It is common knowledge that people like to deal with those they like, know and trust, so take steps to solidify relationships as soon as possible. Get to know special details about customer’s families, their hobbies or even what they take in their coffee. Take notes, keep files and refer back to them before each meeting. I guarantee that they will be impressed with what you remembered, and there is a very good chance that your competitors did not take those lengths to learn about them.

Becoming a true sales professional takes time, and long-term commitment to grow and learn every day. Sales reps tend to be negatively stereotyped, but those that stand out from the crowd, truly care about their customers and can be counted on at a moment’s notice will always be in demand.

Are you in this for just a job, or a long, prosperous career? You make the choice.

Advertisements

Timmy’s 10’s – 10 Friend’s Fantastic Blogs!

Laptop with blank notepad and pencil with sheets of crumpled pap

I am lucky to have met many people online who have now become friends.

These blogs/websites are AWESOME, and are all developed by regular people like you and I who just took action.

I will peak your curiosity about each of these by just including names.

Click away and have a great day 🙂

The Connect and “Barf” Method Rarely Works!

bigstock-closeup-portrait-of-amazed-man-40961983

I love to discuss this scenario when speaking about networking with anyone who is interested in hearing my take….

You are at an after work business mixer – a cocktail party per se. You meet somebody for the first time, shake hands and exchange business cards. What would their body language be, and what would they say if the next thing you did was try and sell them something?

So why do so many people think this is ok to do when connecting online?

I could rattle off many examples when this has happened to me. I am stunned and bewildered every time.  I am now less and less surprised because it is becoming more prevalent online.

Relationships take time to develop, and people typically only purchase from those that they know, like and trust.

Somebody can’t possibly have a hot clue what you are all about after you have just said “hello”. Most people would think you were an alien trying to connect for the first time offering your products and/or services.

  • Thank people for connecting when they confirm your “request to connect” via social media
  • Provide value 
  • Get to know them, and actually listen to them
  • Connect them with like-minded people in your network

People will see right through you if you are only in this to sell. But if you put the focus on them, and show that you actually care about building  long-term relationships, you will be much more successful when it comes time to present your offer.

Don’t just “barf”. That is just plain lazy!

If you like this post, swing back up to the top and sign up for all my latest updates 🙂

The Story Of “The Grinder”!

bigstock-Construction-Worker-With-Angle-42154756

I heard the phrase “are you grinding it out” yesterday and it inspired this post!

The grinder was never a superstar at any sport as a kid, but what they lacked in talent, they more than made up for in heart and desire

The grinder had trouble maintaining their “A” and “B” grades from highschool in university, even failing one course!

The grinder, while firmly established in their career, was let go from a job

The grinder had several jobs over a few year period, struggling to find the right fit

The grinder was inspired one day, to pick up a pen and started to write

The grinder finally took a leap of faith after many months and started a blog

The grinder dove deep in to their profession and researched heavily in the internet marketing space

The grinder started to connect with incredible people online via social media one by one, day by day. They kept moving forward using the mantra “A Little Bit Every Day”

The grinder struggled with the demands of a day job, a busy family life and extra curricular activities; but still often made time to write and develop their network

The grinder like most people, has good days and bad days, but refuses to give up; keeps moving forward and constantly reminds themselves how close they are to their goals

“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success” – Thomas Edison

The grinder is me, and I am proud to say that I refuse to give up or take steps backwards. Some days are better than others, but I constantly remind myself how badly I want it!

  • Are you a grinder, or do you need to start grinding it out?
  • Are you moving forward, or have you recently taken steps back further from your goals?
  • Do you have a “don’t quit” mentality, or are you sabotaging your thoughts with “well I guess this is all I am meant to do in life”?

Keep fighting, keep connecting with incredible people, keep being inspired and having fun!

YOU ARE closer than you think 🙂

If you like this post, swing back up to the top and sign up for all my latest updates 🙂

 

Getting To Know Tim!

IMG_0785

This is a repost of my first blog entry on January 23, 2012! I have many new followers, so this is a great opportunity to get to know me a little better!

My name is Tim Mushey, and those who know me well call me “Moosh”. I have decided to start this blog with a “Get to Know Me” post so you will be able to understand where the inspiration for this content came from!

I have loved to lead, motivate and inspire others for as long as I can remember. I have often been told that I have the gift of gab, and always have something to say. One of my groomsmen described me best to the guests at my wedding,

“All you have to do is say hi to Tim on the phone or in person, and next thing you know, you have all the updates on the latest TV shows, sporting events, bands and current events. Speaking to him is like flipping channels with a remote control.”

And he’s right! I’m passionate about many things in life – music, sports, my family, friends and work – and I love to share information with everyone! I believe that if I had not battled a stuttering problem all of my life, I would have a career in TV sports broadcasting in some capacity. I often envisioned myself as a sports anchor growing up!

As the son of two teachers, education has always been important to me. I achieved a Bachelor of Commerce Honours degree at the age of 22, and with my first “real job”, was managing a car rental branch by the age of 24. I took a little break after two and a half years in that fast paced business to travel to Australia and New Zealand. I was nervous leaving my family and friends, but a good friend of mine quit his job to do the same thing a few months before, and I thought that was an incredible idea! I ended up travelling for over 7 months, and the experience was better than I could have ever imagined. I made many life long friends from all over the world on that journey, and even managed to squeeze in some work experience selling encyclopedias – true story!

When I returned home in 1999, my career path lead me to outside sales and I have never looked back. It did not matter if I was selling mattresses, credit reports, electrical products, corporate parking programs or photocopiers, there was one commonality – I loved to sell! I had an exciting opportunity to manage a team of 10 reps and support staff with about 40% coverage of Canada in 2007, but changes occurred simultaneously within the organization, and I ended up declining the offer. To this day, I think back to what might have been, but deep down I know I made the right decision for my career and family. Being a Sales Manager was my dream job for many years.

Throughout the years since I completed my degree, I’ve realized that university was just the beginning of my education. So much of my success in sales didn’t come from what I’d read in text books, it has come from what I have learned in the field. Each role, and each account specifically has challenged me to grow each day. I have a wealth of knowledge, tools & systems that I am eager to share with others in sales, and those considering it as their profession in the future.

The internet has provided me with the ability to broadcast all over the world now. If I had affected lives in my own communities over the course of my life, why could I not affect lives everywhere in the future? I have learned to manage my stutter, and even though I still have to work on it daily, I am now ready to get in front of the camera, feel confident, and once and for all lose the words “self-conscious” from my vocabulary!

I hope you enjoy this blog. It truly comes from the heart, and was an absolute pleasure being involved in all aspects of its creation and its ever-changing content going forward!

Let’s Connect!

Saturday Music Memories – RadioActive WOW!!

There are not a lot of bands today that make me stop in my tracks. Imagine Dragons are one of them.

Their performance of Radioactive on the Grammy’s was awesome. So was this one from last week on Saturday Night Live featuring Lamar Kendrick.

Enjoy!

The Five Star 5 – How Do You Relax?

bigstock-Beach-Dog-48764102

We all get busy running around like crazy, and sometimes forget to kick back and do things that we love to do!

Remember, if an oxygen mask ever popped down on an airplane, you should put yours on first 🙂

You need to take care of yourself before even attempting to help others.

How do you relax and unwind?

For me, I love to:

  • Workout and run
  • Read books
  • Search for rare music videos on YouTube
  • Play recreational hockey
  • Hang out with my family

“Better learn balance. Balance is key.” – Mr. Miyagi

If you need a little more “balance” in your life, why not start today?

Good luck and let me know how it goes!

What’s Your “Edge”?

bigstock-Business-metaphore-of-staying--26148134

When I started my online journey several years ago I battled uncertainty and doubt early on. Thoughts regularly came up like:

  • So many other people are already excelling in (insert niche)
  • What could I possibly share that hasn’t been discussed before?
  • What value could a newcomer like myself bring to the “party”?

Over time as I gained momentum and started to feel pretty good about things, I certainly realized that I had an “Edge”.

The “Edge” was me. It is specific to my brand and business. No one person is exactly the same as me, nor will my business be exactly the same as anyone else’s.

You have an opportunity to do FANTASTIC things!

  • Let your personality shine. Allow your audience in to your life a bit. Show them who you really are
  • If you are funny by nature, add some humour to your work, but don’t force it
  • Be creative with your content, and do some “outside-of-the-box” things that your audience will start to expect
  • Be you – it is what you know best
  • Be humble, grateful, helpful, accommodating and go-to resource in your niche

Do you want to take your “Edge” to another level? NEVER EVER stop learning!

Check out these 5-Star resources that help me move my business forward every day:

Social Media

Ebooks 

Writing 

Podcasting 

Awesomeness (Personal Branding)

  • If you feel stuck and need a bit of a push, let me know – I am here to help!
  • If you have overcome obstacles lately and now feel better about things, let us know the good news!

Would love if you commented and shared your stories (or you can always email me at TimMushey@gmail.com)

How Bad Do You Want It?

bigstock-Woman-with-question-mark-on-bl-45751951

I spoke at a local Toastmasters Conference over the weekend and had a tremendous time! My discussion focused on the basics of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and how to use the social website “MeetUp” to attract guests to local club meetings.

When my presentation was over, I continued to chat with several attendees.

A couple of people took particular interest in what I was doing online with social media to build my  brand. I recall comments like,

  • “You obviously don’t have kids. How could you do all this other stuff and work full-time?”
  • “What kind of day job do you have?”
  • “How much time do you spend on social media per day”?

They commented on their busy lives, and how utilizing social media to improve their future seemed nearly impossible.

I was getting nervous and was not sure what to say next. My instincts finally kicked in . I proceeded  to say one phrase in a very confident (but non-confrontational) tone,

“How badly do you want it?”

“Actually I do have kids; a seven-year old and a 13 month old. I work full-time out of the house. We are as busy like most families, seemingly running all the time. But I make it all work. I have blogged for two years, spent at least 15 minutes per day building my brand most days over the past 3 years.

I focus on doing my “social media brand building” before the family gets up in the morning, or late at night. If it is on a weekend, I sneak away from them for short periods of time. The only reason I can commit to the crazy hours is that I LOVE WHAT I AM DOING!”

I continued to discuss the “Little Bit Everyday” mantra that I learned from Jeb Blount over at Sales Gravy.

I love the gym analogy. People think that they have to buy a gym membership and workout at least one hour per day to get in shape.  Small chunks of time on a regular basis makes a difference as well. Some days I spend hours on my online presence, others only a few minutes. But I show up ALL THE TIME. You can’t start engaging with social media, get all excited, then disappear for weeks at a time. If I see profiles like that, I am gone!

When that conversation was done, one of the attendees said to me, “I never thought of it like that“!

I am happy the message resonated with them, once I explained balancing  family life, and moving my consulting opportunities forward.

  • How do you balance everything if you are working full-time with a regular “day job”?
  • How much time do you spend daily on social media, blogging and building your brand?
  • What struggles do you face as you try to move your business forward?

Would love to hear your thoughts on this very important topic. Most people are struggling just to get through the day, and it would be nice to share ideas how successful people are able to manage all of their commitments!

Great Message About The First Follower!

The first follower transforms a lone nut in to a leader!”

Great quote from this short three-minute video.

Hope you enjoy this as much as I do.

Have a fantastic Wednesday.