Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Listen, Learn & Live

Listen, learn and live seem like three normal everyday terms. If you were to take each word individually I'm sure that many could come up with the definitions relatively easily. I want to take a look at them as a whole and how they apply and effect each other. Now, of coarse, I am in sales but what I'm about to say about these three words can apply in life in general.

Let's talk about the LISTENing. Last week I did some training about how to listen to your customers in order to get them what they want. Apparently, most people weren't Listening. I am not saying that listening will get you everywhere in life but it can help, especially when paired with my other 2 words. Listening can help you learn what to do and what not to do. If you see someone doing something that seems wrong or hear someone say something wrong then you can decide that whatever they are doing isn't beneficial to you and be able to figure out what the right way might be. But, on the other hand, you can apply what you hear from more experienced salespeople that have come before you and apply what has made them successful and use it for your benefit. I think the main danger in this point is that there are a lot of salespeople out there that don't want to listen at all. They think they know it all and that there is nothing that anyone else can offer to make them better. It really amazes me, especially with today's competition, that people don't want to get better by learning as much as they can learn. I try to learn something everyday.

Which brings me to my next point and that is to take what you LISTEN to and hear and LEARN from it. Whether it is something positive or negative you can always learn something. Learning, in this business, is crucial in order to grow and mature. I will admit, that when I first started in the car business, that it didn't take me long to think I knew it all and that I didn't need to learn or listen to anyone else but once I matured a little I figured out that if you are not learning and growing then you are dying. It's frustrating for me to see new sales people come in, sale a few cars and then they think they know it all. I can't stress it enough......Learning is an essential part of any successful sales person, no matter what type of sales you happen to be in. It's very hard to learn everything there is to know in almost any sales business there is out there though many think they know ALL.

Now, we can talk about LISTENING and LEARNING but if you don't LIVE what you've heard and learned then you haven't accomplished anything. Remember back when I mentioned listening to or seeing what people are doing right or wrong and applying it for the positive in your life? That's what I'm talking about here. If you say that there is something you need to change in your life or in your profession and not do something to change then you are doing nothing but talking. If you are not taking some kind of ACTION then you are standing still or moving backwards. Don't get caught up thinking that you don't have to move because if you want to continue to grow and improve then you must take those things that you LISTENED to and LEARNED and now you must LIVE what you have gained from them. 

Never take life for granted. Nothing is guaranteed except death and taxes and that includes tomorrow. You can plan for tomorrow but you may never see it so learn all you can and apply it so that you can if you do make it to tomorrow that you won't have any regrets. It's always easier to say "I wished I would've done this or that differently" so why not go ahead and do it differently now!

Hope I was rambling too much!

Thanks for reading!

Fist Pump Guy out!!

#thefistpumpguy #listenlearnlive

Friday, August 26, 2016

Listening to your customers!

I recently went into an eating establishment to order some food. Now, I go to this place regularly and usually don't have many issues if any at all. I went in this particular morning and ordered my usual breakfast and then the young man, taking my order, asked me if I just wanted the sandwich and drink to which I replied no I'd like the meal. Then he repeated my order and then inserted "medium Coke" to which I replied no a "medium coffee". Now, I really don't get upset or frustrated about things like this because I usually use them to train on. I usually try to use them to apply to what I do for a living.

The first thing I noticed about the young man is the fact that he is "training" and probably hasn't been doing it long. And I for sure will agree that working in fast food is definitely not easy especially when you are busy and getting backed up and everyone is staring at you wondering when they are going to get their food. So I definitely wasn't going to get mad. I automatically thought of the sales industry, auto sales in particular, and how often we do this same exact thing.

We have a particular process we use at our dealership and train everyone to follow it. It begins with the meet and greet and then goes into the interview process. Now, these two steps are vitally important to any sales position because this is where you learn about the customer and start to find out what you need to sell them. If you are not really "listening" to them at this point you could lose a deal whether it's right away or at the end. If you are not really paying attention to them you could miss important information that could lead to you putting them on the wrong product or showing them the wrong item.

You might ask "Is that really that big of a deal if I show them the wrong item or product?" to which I would respond "YES". I answer the question that way simply because a customer looks at you as the professional and they expect you to have all the answers even if you don't know all the answers. They look to you to show them what they need instead of showing them the wrong product altogether. Sometimes you lose trust and credibility and sometimes it blows over and is no big deal. But why must you risk the possibility of losing a customer because you were too busy or not interested enough in them to listen to what they want and what their concerns are? Keep in mind that you may even sale the particular customer but do they send you referrals and do you get their repeat business? Both important questions to note.

If you don't "listen" to your customers and "hear" what they are saying then you could also lose vital time. If you want to sell more than one car a day, for example, then you must be able to utilize your time and that includes being efficient with each and every customer and opportunity that presents itself to you. If you don't then you could find yourself spending way more time on a deal than you probably need to and if you do end up selling the customer you may not leave yourself time to do much else that you need to be doing. Now, when I'm talking about time you must be considerate of the customer's time as well. It's not all about you. If they come to see you then you must be prepared to handle the customer in an appropriate amount of time so you definitely must be able to "listen" and pay close attention to each and every opportunity.

I could write much more on this topic but the whole point is that if you want to be successful in sales, not short term but long term, you must be able to listen to every customer and apply what they say to your process so that it'll end with the results you want it to. If you can, listen to everything that is going on around you too. Who knows?, you might even pick up something from someone else that may help you grow in your craft.

Thanks for reading!

Fist Pump Guy Out!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Dreaded Check Register!

I haven't written in my blog in a while so I figured I'd try to get back on the wagon. It seems like I haven't written in months. My motivation, for some reason, just hasn't been what it normally is. And it has truly shown in my production and my attitude, at least I can tell it even if no one else can.

I'm going talk a little about what I saw today. I went into a local bank to get a check register, you know those things where you deduct the money you've spent so that you make sure that you don't overdraw. They're just so much easier to keep everything lined up. For the past few weeks I have been using note cards to keep up with it but it just doesn't work the same. Anyways, I went in to the branch and a lady was standing up front and asked if she could help me. I replied to her what I needed and she said she would get me one. I then happen to look around the branch and noticed that there were quite a few people working in there and they all seemed to be busy assisting customers and such, which I was pleased to see. Now, normally I don't go inside this branch because it is usually so packed but today I decided to run inside real quick, since it was early in the morning, to see if they could help me with this, what I thought to be a simple mediocre task.

After the nice lady asked me what I needed and I told her she scurried off to take care of my problem. I then decided to try to catch up on some much needed reading on Facebook. Every few minutes I'd look up to see if she was back. I looked up and she was behind the teller counter looking with no luck. After another few minutes behind the counter she came out and then proceeded to ask everyone that works there if they had seen any check registers to what all answered "no". I am probably one of the most impatient people I know but I was really trying to understand and really did appreciate her time in checking on it for me.

Now, keep in mind, I never go inside the bank or even through the drive thru but today I needed something from the bank that I've used for quite sometime and they weren't able to assist me. They did offer to call me when the order of them came in and I declined and said that I would just check back in a few days. I left a little aggravated but not that big of a deal until I got to driving and thinking.

I then had a brief conversation with my oldest daughter about being successful in a job and in life. I basically told her that she needed to learn as much as she could about everything she could even if it didn't directly apply to what her chosen profession might be. I told her that she could never learn enough and that she should take every opportunity to learn something new even if it seemed very unnecessary to know.

All I could think about was the amount of people that I work around on a regular basis that were very content in not trying to learn anything new. Many of them aren't interested in getting better at their craft or trying to grow. Even after all I try to teach they still put forth little to no effort to do the extra unless of course the learning is turned into "Mandatory training".

I had a training class the other day that talked about "Mandatory" and "Voluntary" training and what the difference was and which one would be more beneficial to them as a professional and all of them answered that voluntary training would definitely be more beneficial and effective. But even with that being said I just don't see or notice the effort of the majority of them. I guess I just don't understand the mindset for the most part. Oh, I get it that many "sales professionals" say that you don't need to learn the product or that one doesn't need to do extra training as long as you're performing but what happens when or if they lose their job or get moved to another dept etc? I guess I think about what else I can do verses why do I need to do something. I know many of the people I work with look at me and talk about me behind my back when they see me shooting videos or investing in something that I hope will grow my business but I try to not let it bother me even if my idea doesn't have the effect I thought it should or hoped it would. I try not to give up.

The moral of this story is this, make sure that if you work in a business, especially sales, that you must learn as much as you can so you can know what's going on so that when someone comes in looking for something or asking about something, even if it seems like a small thing, that you can give them and answer and solve their problem. You'd be surprised at the amount of people that I work with that can't do simple tasks or answer simple questions from customers. If I don't know I find out the answer. It is very important for your reputation to be able to get and keep a customer's trust and gain credibility. Sure, you may not see the results immediately but they will come in some shape, form or fashion.

Thanks for reading!


#thefistpumpguy #learnallyoucanaboutyourbusiness #voluntaryormandatorytraining