Let them struggle

Hear this post on The Sales Life Podcast.

Do you want to help someone out? Well, help them out by letting them struggle.

Struggle is an opportunity to learn beyond the point of frustration.

I learned this by talking to one of my friends. He mandate for his kids? They are not allowed to come ask for help until they make some sort of progress beyond the sticking point.

Oftentimes he finds they never ask for help because they end up figuring it out on their own (F.I.O.).

Because they figured it out on their own, they earned their confidence & independence.

It made me think. How many times have I been too quick to help my daughter with a big word or help her finish her project?

And I’ve robbed her of one of the greatest opportunities.

The opportunity to struggle.

Think about it. If ask for help every time you get stuck, it’ll become your automatic knee-jerk emotion.

We’ve done that on our jobs, as children, and still do it as adults today.

But help is not always going to be there. And because help’s not always going to be there, you need to learn the opportunity of struggle and how to figure it out on your own.

Ray Dalio, second’s that motion. In his book, Principles, he actually denies his people of their request because he wants them to find alternative solutions. Even though his company has the resources, he wants his people to become resourceful.

Like my buddy’s kids, when they figure it out, Dalio has more confident & independent employees who aren’t weakly running down the hall looking for someone to come to the rescue.

Parents let your kids struggle.

Friends, let your kids struggle.

Managers, let your employees struggle.

Children, sometimes you’ve got to let your parents struggle too.

Bailing them out for the 50th time, you scratch your head about parents, employees, kids, & friends, and think “When are they ever going to figure it out?”

They won’t as long as they have you. If they can always run back to you, then there’s no reason to run forward toward anything else.

So let your people struggle. Not harshly. Tell them, “Get to a sticking point; make progress beyond the sticking point, and then if you need my help, we’ll figure it out together.”

Because I find, it’s better to run behind someone than to run for them.

Remember, the greatest sale that you’ll ever make is to sell you on you because you’re more than enough.

Stay amazing. Stay in The Sales Life.

Your circumstances may not be equal but your opportunities are.


Your circumstances may not be equal, but your opportunities are.

Think about that for a second.

Everybody’s got different circumstances-we’ve all got different things going on in our life, right?

But no matter how diverse our circumstances, there are still opportunities!

Because opportunities only exist and can be seized by those who are willing to see them.
Opportunities are an equal employer.

They are!

Opportunities are always looking to hire someone no matter who’s in office or the state of the economy.

But most people don’t even apply.

So let’s take both ends of the spectrum.

Let’s talk about the guy down the road who seems like he wants for nothing. No struggle, no cares, just a picture perfect world.

Well, he misses out on opportunities.

Because he’s complacent. He’s satisfied. And if there’s no hunger, there’s nothing to seize because there’s nothing to see.

You can’t seize what you don’t see.

But let’s go all the way to the other end of the spectrum. The person who lacks everything. Well that kind of person misses the opportunities too because all they see is lack. All they talk about is what they’re missing. They point to the guy down the road who has all of the advantages saying, “If only I had that.”

These people use lack as a crutch-giving infinite excuses as to why they can’t be successful, instead of creativily leveraging lack to create new opportunities.

So seeing both ends of the spectrum, now you know it negates all excuses.

And now that you don’t have an excuse, where’s your opportunity?

Stay amazing. Stay in The Sales Life.

The Right, Honor, Privilege, & Respect of Sales

*This episode of The Sales Life Podcast was so enjoyable to produce. I had the chance to have a conversation with “The Sales Hunter” Mark Hunter (yes, Hunter is his real last name) and dive into his wisdom of “A Mind For Sales.”

Even if you are not in the profession of sales, you are in the life-building skills of sales so I’d urge you to grab a copy of this powerful book.

Check out our full length conversation.

Show Notes w/ highlights:

Marsh Buice:

Why not, right?

Mark Hunter:

Let’s have a good time.

Marsh Buice:

Yes sir. All right let’s roll with this thing. Welcome back to another edition of the Sales Life and today is my absolute honor man. TSL nation, I hope you are ready. I hope you have plenty of notes. Let me tell you this. If you’re watching on the video, I got notes and notes and notes and books and everything else. I’m overwhelmed with notes and I have another pen and I have another notepad because today guys we have one of the top influential sales and marketing leaders on the planet that is here. 30 years banging away in the sales game and let me tell you something, and he will be the first to admit this. Sales is not just for those in the profession, sales is a life skill.

Marsh Buice:

So even if you’re not in the sales profession do not bounce off of this podcast because I guarantee you, you’re going to get some nuggets of wisdom from this man. So anyway, one of the top influential leaders in the world. So much so guys that he is teaching his techniques and his books have been taught and are being currently taught on five continents and hundred different countries. Now if somebody can be the first to email me how many continents there are in the world, I will buy you a copy of this man’s book. So welcome to the TSL, to The Sales Life, Mr. Mark Hunter.

Mark Hunter:

Thanks so much. We’re going to have a good time. You and I just connect and that’s cool, that’s neat, because that’s what sales is, connecting.

Marsh Buice:

It really is. You know Mark, connection has been a tough thing for me because naturally I’m a introvert by nature. I’m the guy that you can give me a bud light, sit me in the corner and you won’t hear a peep out of me. I’m not Mr. Work the room, how you doing? I’m not the guy who really just naturally can talk to somebody in the elevator. I’ve had to break outside of my comfort zone so much so. I’ve done over 600 episodes of The Sales Life and most of those episodes Mark are solo episodes.

Marsh Buice:

That may come hard for some people to do a solo episode but for me, it was the safe route. It was safe because all I had to do was curate content and I didn’t have to hone the craft of communication and connection. Although I do it in sales, I mean 22 years, I’m the best mask introvert there is. Because I can do it in front of a customer but when it comes to naturally connecting and communicating with someone else, this is way outside my wheelhouse man that I’ve pushed myself to do this.

Mark Hunter:

You know what, I can relate to that. I can totally relate to that because I really think inside I’m an introvert. I can hang out with myself. I don’t say that egotistically. I mean I can hang out with myself for days on end and just be very happy. But you’re right, when you got to do sales, then you totally step up.

Marsh Buice:

Do you find that you burn a lot of energy Mark, flipping back and forth? Especially man, you speak to… Is it something that you’ve just grown accustomed to? Do you still get nervous when you walk on the stage and you’re the leader of outbound? I mean, you just have a massive following. Is that still something hard for you?

Mark Hunter:

Well, I wouldn’t say as nervous as you get jazzed. I love… Right now, I mean, as we go through this, I’m going to get more and more jazzed as we go because I love talking about sales. I love talking about this. To a certain degree, it Jazz’s me. It puts energy into me but then when I get done, I just want to just stop and… I spent a lot of time and I think every salesperson should do this. You just got to take time just to decompress and just reflect and self coach yourself.

Mark Hunter:

Self coach yourself as to what you [inaudible 00:04:33] not to beat yourself up, but to go to the next level. That’s what I love about being a little more introverted. I also like observing. I am fascinated by politics. Okay, now I’m not going to go down political road, but to watch social dynamics and to watch people, that’s what I study. That’s what I look at. That’s what I watch. The dynamics of interaction. I learned from that. To me, that’s just… I’m just happy sitting on the sidelines just watching.

Marsh Buice:

What do you get from those things that you watch?

Mark Hunter:

You watch the eloquence of words. You watch the dynamic of body language. You watch the receptivity of an audience or other key people. You see the bounce effect of comments and so forth. Those are very interesting things for us to observe because it tells us about how do we interact with society? How do we behave? How do we do things? You think about it, if you got kids, I’ve got a couple kids. I can say one thing to one kid and they’ll respond one way. I say the exact same thing to another kid and they will respond totally different. It’s really… It’s the same thing. It’s just amped up a million times over. But that’s I think what makes good salespeople. When they understand how do dynamics come into play?

Marsh Buice:

Yeah, that’s the one thing that intrigues me about the sales profession, Mark, is I never know what I’m walking into every single day. Have no clue. But that’s the joy of it all. We’re in a largely industrial town so a lot of these guys, they work at the plants. Been there forever but they know every single day what they’re walking into and I tell you dude, what totally just… I guess it’s a blessing and a curse. I think sometimes salespeople are bipolar. I mean, people look at us and like… But it’s the volatility man. It’s being able to make the slight adjustments and being able to pivot based on the crowd that you’re playing in front of.

Mark Hunter:

You hit on something there because you’re right. I do a lot of work with industrial companies. You’re right, that person goes to work at an industrial plant but they want predictability. They want the same thing every day. I look at those people and I go, wow. I just couldn’t do that.

Marsh Buice:

Dude I’d die?

Mark Hunter:

Just not my DNA, but see to them, that’s their frame of reference and they like it and I applaud them. I absolutely applaud them for that. Sometimes I go, I really wish I could be like that. This is the challenge in sales. We have to be able to put ourselves into the other person’s shoes. See you’re really stopping by that. It’s easy to say, oh yeah walk in my shoes. But when you understand the dynamics that they are in, that they operate in, that their life evolves around, then you can begin to understand how they think, how they react, how they view what you have to offer, how they receive your message as to whether or not they even accept it.

Marsh Buice:

Guy Raz recently had Kenneth Cole on his podcast. Guy Raz has a great podcast, How I Built This. I think he’s got a book out too. Kenneth Cole made an eloquent statement. He said, “My job is to…” Because he was asking about the crafting of his shoes and how does he come up with these ideas? He said, “I create what I want to wear.” He said, “But what’s important when I started is I had to walk in my customers shoes first so that one day they would eventually walk in mine.”

Mark Hunter:

Here is something, we all live in a bubble. And it’s just a different degree, different size, different type of bubble. But we all live in a bubble. It’s easy for us to believe that our bubble is your bubble. My bubbles not your bubble, and don’t pop my bubble. So what we have to do is we have to understand and yeah, so his feeling is right. I want to be able to understand you so well that when I make the shoes for me, they’ll fit for you. They’ll be very comfortable for you. But I can’t do that unless I first understand you.

Marsh Buice:

Yeah. I think that’s where sales people miss it. I think many times in an effort to make a whole bunch of money, to make a commission, dude it’s the end of the month. I got to knock somebody’s head off. So many times we’re walking in our shoes and we just totally miss. I mean, we have no clue. When you first start in sales, everything is one… It’s peace, love and soul, right? I mean, the customers are wonderful. Mark, when I first started I had a three subject notebook. I think it was my first month in the business. I had a three subject notebook full of ups. Full of people I’m telling you they’re going to come back. You believe the best in all of them. But then as time goes on, the customer suck. They’re mooches, the management sucks. They have it out for me. The inventory sucks. The commercial sucks, the owner, everybody sucks except for me.

Mark Hunter:

Right. Oh, yeah, that is that. See that really comes into something because what happens is our mind is now working against us. It’s amazing. I contend that every salesperson has significant opportunities every day. But the vast majority never see the opportunities. Because for one reason or another, we just shut down. We label, we automatically classify, we discount, we know… And we make such rapid assumptions and we lose out. Here’s the thing, there’s no way that every sale is going to be closed. There’s no way you’re going to get every sale out there. But I can still learn from the sales I don’t get.

Mark Hunter:

I think that’s what helps us. Years ago, in fact it’s funny, he was a friend of my father’s. He sold me life insurance at the age of… I was maybe 24. I bought life insurance policy from him.

Marsh Buice:

You realized you weren’t bulletproof anymore?

Mark Hunter:

Yeah. It was funny, but I bought life insurance policy from him. I’m still not quite sure why I did. But I did because somehow he connected with me. I look back on that situation and I go, here was a gentleman who was my father’s age. Yet he was really… I didn’t view him as my father. I viewed him as this guy who just really understood me. He came to me on my level and helped me see the value of buying life insurance policy at probably 20, maybe even 23. I had been out of college maybe a year or two.

Marsh Buice:

So 10 years ago.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah. Just 10 years ago. But what this is, and it was interesting, as I got to know the guy. He said, “Every person I meet, my goal is just to learn something from them. My goal is just to learn something from them. Learn something from them to help me become a better life insurance salesperson.” I go, wow, because you think about it, I mean, I didn’t realize how ugly life insurance salesperson job was back then. I didn’t realize how… But think about that. I mean, how many doors he must get slammed. How many doors they still get slammed on their face. Yet he viewed it in just the opposite manner that I’m still going to learn something even if I don’t get a sale. That’s pretty cool.

Marsh Buice:

Yeah, it really is. Learning from the experiences that… Learning from the ones that don’t equal a sale, every customer that you talk to, it’s not a one to one ratio. Okay, I talked to a customer, I made a sale, I didn’t make a sale. Because in every customer mark that we talked to, there may be six, seven, eight, nine, 10 different lessons that I can take away from that because there’s so many different emotions that happen during those times that I could adjust.

Mark Hunter:

Right and the objective with that discussion is to earn the right, the privilege, honor and respect to be able to talk with that person again.

Yesterday, I was making some calls. There was one gentleman I got on the phone. I want to talk to him for about half an hour. It was just amazing how we just clicked. We were talking about various industries and this environment we’re in right now and so forth. Did a sale come out of it? No. A lead? Maybe, down the road. But more importantly, I earned the right, privilege, honor and respect to be able to meet with that person again. And I will and I made a note. I’m going to follow back up with him in a couple of weeks.

Mark Hunter:

I sent him a white paper I’d written, [inaudible 00:14:37] loved it. He popped me back an email this morning. So he must have looked at it so cool. It’s earning the right, the privilege, honor and respect for you to have a conversation with each person you come in contact with.

Marsh Buice:

That’s mind blowing. The right, the privilege, the honor and the respect. TSL nation, if you take those four things in every single customer that you talk to I would venture to say, if you cannot say the right, the privilege, the honor and the respect, then this is where you’re starting to lose your sales mind.

Mark Hunter:

Right, and what it does is it allows you… Because here’s my objective. My objective is just to help people have a better day. I want to be one of the better parts of each person’s day. Because if I can be the better part of each… I don’t want to be the best part. I’ll save that for their spouse or significant other, kids, whatever. But if I could be the better part of somebody’s day, then wow. Then you know what? Something good is going to come out of it. Something good is going to come out of it.

Marsh Buice:

If anything, though Mark, even when… Because when I told my mom I was going into car sales. I mean, Mark she held the phone, it was like [inaudible 00:15:59] hello, hello. The stigma is absolutely terrible. I’m banging on year number 23 but I said this, that every customer, Mark, that is going to meet me is going to walk away from me saying he’s nothing like I... Every stigma I had about a car salesman, whether they buy from me or not, it’s cool. At least they’re going to be educated, they’re going to feel respected, and they’re going to walk away even if I helped them make a better decision to buy another product. I’m good with that.

Mark Hunter:

Right. See now, there’s something you said there and I love this because I’m on this mission, you’re on this mission too. To change the stigma around the word salesperson. So many people, you say, “Oh, you’re in sales.” I’m on a mission to change that stigma because I truly believe our job is to help people.

Our job is to help people see and achieve what they did not think was possible.

When I can do that, that’s huge. That makes me feel good. Now, let’s back it up a little bit further because there’s an expression, a two watt light bulb looks pretty good in the darkroom.

Mark Hunter:

Now, we’ve all been in situations where man it is just screwed up. I love the automotive industry. I love it. Love it. But there are some perceptions from 30 years past, 40 years past that seems to never go away.

Marsh Buice:

No.

Mark Hunter:

Right?

Marsh Buice:

Yeah.

Mark Hunter:

I mean, it’s like the old episode of WkRP, right?

Marsh Buice:

Yeah.

Mark Hunter:

What was his name?

Marsh Buice:

With the plaid suit?

Mark Hunter:

Plaid suite, right. Selling advertising.

Marsh Buice:

Johny Fever.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah, I mean, it’s the same thing. I mean, I got some wonderful friends that have been in the copy machine sales, office equipment sales and they say the same thing. They go, it is so refreshing when we can come in and develop a client relationship and change their whole view. Change that they suddenly… Wow, this is like… And it’s the same thing you have. It’s the same thing that people listening to this podcast have. Because you’re viewing it differently. Then I go, to me that’s pretty cool.

Marsh Buice:

Yeah, it really is. And I have customers who I’ve sold to who I’ve used some of these sales techniques that I teach and they watch my show, and they’re like, “Oh my God, I love it.” I mean, they’re okay… I don’t have to have a separate members only page. I don’t want to tell my customers… Because I don’t do anything to a customer. I do it for them, and ties into what you say, to help them achieve. They had no idea that they needed me until they talked to me.

Mark Hunter:

Because the sale is built around trust. There’s a couple things right now that we have to look at. Okay, we’re recording this right now during the COVID situation, so forth. Here’s something that I have found significantly. This is the mark of a good salesperson.

Marsh Buice:

Oh.

Mark Hunter:

Authenticity, transparency and values.

Authenticity, transparency and values. There’s so much noise out there. There’s so much confusion out there. People want to feel that they’re dealing with somebody who is real, an authentic person. Again, because there’s so much fake stuff out there on the internet. Transparent, transparent in that they’re being open with me and I can be open with them. Values, they understand where I’m coming from. They appreciate where I’m coming from. We probably line up, that at least we have an understanding. I see those and especially if you’re under the age of 30. This is what you look to.

Mark Hunter:

Actually, that came out of a study that I was reading and doing some work on as to what… If you’re a millennial, actually pre-millennial, generation X right now. I believe that’s what… You know what it is. I don’t want it is, but anyway.

Marsh Buice:

Me neither.

Mark Hunter:

That’s what they say they look for in companies. They want companies that are authentic, transparent, and the values align with them. Same thing applies in sales.

Marsh Buice:

Well, aint it funny how people just kind of… Then they take these younger generations, and they’re like, they don’t want anything. That’s not true. If anything they want what we never asked for.

Mark Hunter:

That is so spot on. Because here’s the thing, I can’t sell anything until I create a level of trust with you. And trust is built around confidence. Well, how do I create confidence? Authenticity, transparency, and values? Boom.

Marsh Buice:

How do you… Speaking of confidence, how do you… Because we’re in a rejection based business, Mark. I mean other than Mark Hunter who scores 100% on every phone call, he gets a customer. The rest of us, slackers back here in the back of the bus man. The confidence level it can be overwhelming sometimes Mark. I’m only on 11th street man. You don’t understand everybody I talked to. If I offered to buy for them, they wouldn’t… How am I supposed to get confidence in these situations?

Mark Hunter:

First of all, the valleys are never as low as you think they are and the mountain tops never as high as you think they are. It is amazing and it’s amazing how quickly they can change.

Marsh Buice:

Amen to that.

Mark Hunter:

Right. I mean, you can be 0- 11 and I get where… Here’s what I tell salespeople to do.

Take a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle of it and write your customers, write their names on one side. Then write down on the right hand side the outcome you created from. Not what you sold them, the outcome.

We’ll say it was a truck. It enabled them to expand their company business. It’s going to allow them to no longer have to have deliveries made to the job site but they can do it themselves.

Mark Hunter:

It may be a person that you sell a van to, an SUV or a minivan to. They are going to have a third child and it’ll now hold a third car seat. So you allow the family to be able to be in one car. You want to focus in on the outcome you create. When you do that, you look at that list and then you give yourself a big hug. “I’m good.” Because what you did was you help them solve the outcome. I got to share an automotive story. I’ve had the privilege over the years to work with a number of different names and so forth. But there was one when my wife and I were buying a car.

Mark Hunter:

A funny story. We live in Nebraska. We had never owned an SUV before. We thought okay, maybe because I travel a lot, maybe we should buy an SUV for the weather. But it’s going to be my wife’s car. Now my wife has two requirements in a car. One, unbelievably good heated seats and a phenomenal sound system. That’s what she wants. The SUV portion was really just secondary. That was totally secondary. It’s great heated seats and an unbelievable sound system. It was amazing. Nobody would latch on to that. They were latching on to the safety features of four wheel drive in the winter. All of this, all of this. Listen to what my wife is saying. She wants that… I mean, the sound system and the heated seats that’s more important than anything.

Marsh Buice:

Customers will tell you what it will take to sell them.

Mark Hunter:

They will.

Marsh Buice:

They’ll tell you-

Mark Hunter:

They will.

Marsh Buice:

But you’re not listening.

Mark Hunter:

I’m laughing my head. I’m standing here trying not to get involved in this transaction. I still remember this one.

Marsh Buice:

It’s got to be hard for you.

Mark Hunter:

But I’m just watching this unfold and he keeps looking at me. It’s like, oh, please, you’re killing me. My wife… It was funny. If they had latched on to that sooner, we could have closed the deal faster. Yet my wife said it. But because it’s something we didn’t want to hear, not we didn’t want to hear. We pre-lined, “Oh, people buy SUVs because of the four wheel drive capability in bad weather. That’s what they buy it for.” Yeah but that was number three or number four on the list. Crazy.

Marsh Buice:

It really is. TSL nation, I hope you took note of that. Focus on the outcomes that you create. Speaking of that Mark, during these times, like right now we’re recovering from two devastating hurricanes that blew up our city. One thing that I had to really impress on my sales people is don’t forget that… Sometimes man we lose sight of the importance… Sales is the life blood of the nation. Of the world. Nothing happens until we sell something.

Marsh Buice:

There’s nothing to produce. There’s nothing to manage. There’s no money to count. There’s nothing with nothing until it starts with sales. One thing for the recovery process I tell my salespeople is do not lose sight of the impact because we’re creating the outcome. Because we are the beginning of the recovery, because… We are. I mean, if I don’t sell you the truck, then you can’t get the supplies from the lumberyard to rebuild your house or to pick up your children or to evacuate the next hurricane. It all starts with you.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah. I got to share a funny story. I live in Omaha, Nebraska which happens to be the home of Warren Buffett. One of the wealthiest people in the world.

Marsh Buice:

So you live down the road from him?

Mark Hunter:

Actually, he lives two blocks over, about five miles away. Actually his home, same home he’s lived in for 50 years.

Marsh Buice:

I heard it’s a normal home, right?

Mark Hunter:

Well, it’s built up. There’s a fence around it and so forth. But yeah, it’s in a very middle class neighborhood. This is absolutely fascinating. This is a wonderful car story and if anybody doubts this, go out and Google it. I’m sure you can find it. About every seven or eight years, Warren buys a new car. He doesn’t drive much, his office is literally on the same street as where he lives. He had been driving a Lincoln Continental. Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors, came and visited him I believe it was or they were talking on the phone.

Mark Hunter:

Of course, she gave him a little bit of grief. Said you should really be driving our new Cadillac. She quoted the model that he should be driving. So he sent his daughter to go buy the car for him. She goes to the automotive dealership, right down the street from our house here. She goes in and she says, “Yeah, my father. He has a friend who works for General Motors and recommended this…” Didn’t want to say [crosstalk 00:28:42].

Marsh Buice:

Sure.

Mark Hunter:

And says he should buy this car. It was a wonderful lady, relatively new at the dealership. So she begins asking, so she could have sold the car right there. But she begins asking, what he’s going to use it for. The daughter, Susie says, “Well, he really doesn’t drive a whole lot. Drives maybe 1000 miles a year. He’s in his 80s.” Whatever. The salesperson she said that’s not the right car for him. It’s actually too much car. It’s technologically going to be too much for him. He would be better with this model here.

Mark Hunter:

She put him… Now she doesn’t know who it’s for. She’s just selling it to the daughter and sells the daughter a slightly lesser model. The daughter says, “Okay, great. So she buys it.” So then she says, “Oh, by the way, if you could come with me to help deliver the car to my father’s office.” She still doesn’t know it’s Warren Buffett because undoubtedly it was bought in a holding company name or whatever.

Marsh Buice:

Sure.

Mark Hunter:

I’m sure she paid cash.

Marsh Buice:

Yeah, I don’t think there’s traditional financing.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah, this is not going through the finance department. All right. Sorry. You’re only making cash one way in this.

Marsh Buice:

I’m not selling a warranty on this one.

Mark Hunter:

You just hope that sticker price covered it. She said, “Oh well, let me get a hat.” So she grabbed a Cadillac hat. Then she finds out where they’re going. Okay, they’re going to [inaudible 00:30:33] office building. Anyway, she meets Warren in the parking garage of the building. She commented, because it was in the newspaper hearing, he was more excited about the hat than he was the car.

Marsh Buice:

Get out of here.

Mark Hunter:

He was so excited about that hat over the car. Here’s the whole premise. Think about this. This salesperson could easily have closed the transaction on the higher end model. But what she did was she took the time to listen, ask questions, find out and put in. You know what, I have a feeling she probably sold 20 cars the week after that, when that hit the news. Definitely. Can you imagine how her profile went up, her numbers went up?

Marsh Buice:

Right. I sold Warren Buffett. Did you?

Mark Hunter:

I just sold a car to Warren. Yeah, you bet. I mean, I am sure that happened probably four years ago now. I am sure there’s still prey of people going in asking for her. This is the other thing interesting, the only good sale is one that leads to the next sale.

Marsh Buice:

Oh, speak to that.

Mark Hunter:

The only good sale is one that leads to the next sale. So what she was doing was she was creating the next sale. She created the next sales. Plural. That’s huge. I have a feeling when Warren needs his next car, it’s going to be a phone call placed to her and boom.

Marsh Buice:

Well, we can never lose sight, even though the transactions happen faster, Mark, we’re not a commodity and you don’t need to treat yourself as a commodity. It’s still a relationships... Because I mean, let me ask you this because you deal with corporate and government accounts. Is it pretty much vanilla? Is there no emotions? Is it just a board that you talk to?

Mark Hunter:

I’m so glad you asked this. There is no such thing as a non emotional buying decision. I don’t care if it’s a contract. I don’t care if it’s the bid. I don’t care if it’s the bid. There’s still emotion tied. There is still emotion. How many times have we seen, let’s take a government bid. Okay. Take government bid. We’ve all seen times when they throw out the low bidder. I just saw this in the town I live in. Where it was in the newspaper just the other day, where a low bid was thrown out and they took another bid.

Marsh Buice:

Wow.

Mark Hunter:

Because of some prevailing circumstance that had been brought to their attention by the bidder that was higher than the lowest bidder. Here’s the whole thing. Don’t think for a moment in whatever you’re doing it’s a commodity. Don’t think for a moment that there’s not a motion. There’s always emotion because here’s the other thing, never think the sale you’re working on is the last sale. This is another problem. We get in… Go back to this person, [inaudible 00:33:46] I got to make my numbers. If I don’t make my numbers…

Mark Hunter:

What happens is you get into a death spiral. You just got to take a step back and breathe. Just breathe. Here’s what’s very interesting. Did you know that each customer you meet, you have exactly a 50 50 chance of closing a sale.

Marsh Buice:

Really?

Mark Hunter:

Think about it, right? They either buy or they don’t buy, right? That’s it.

Marsh Buice:

Okay, yeah. True.

Mark Hunter:

I mean, right. 50 50. Just because the previous customer behaved like this, does not mean that the next customer behaves like this. We have to treat each selling interaction as a stand alone situation. It’s a standalone. What I see happening is when people get into this [inaudible 00:34:46] funk, they are allowing the previous conversations they’ve had to permeate the next one going forward.

Marsh Buice:

Yep. Big mistake.

Mark Hunter:

Well and part of the problem to is, it’s not what you did today, it’s what you did do 30, 60, 90 days ago. Don’t… I have these guy. I’m a good man, you don’t understand. Well, let’s talk about the last 30 days, the extra lunches that you took. The extra days off that you took. You held a parade for yourself. You made a whole bunch of money and now… Oh now it’s a problem. Well, it wasn’t a problem 30, 60 90 days ago. We always have to look at sales as similar to farming.

Mark Hunter:

You can never harvest crops without planting them first. You can never harvest crops without planting them first. You have to always be asking, what are you planting? In terms of other customers. What are you planting in your own mind? When will those eventually turn into crops that you could harvest somewhere down the road? Okay, I live in Nebraska, I can use little analogies like that, okay.

Marsh Buice:

So let me ask you this Mark. These customers again, man they suck. There terrible. I don’t like the customers that I am getting. I can’t make any money off of them and they complain, and they whine. It’s just non stop.

Mark Hunter:

But they do. You got to ask yourself this question, are they whining or is it how you’re listening to it? I mean, I’m constantly amazed how we hear things. I mean, I’ll use my wife as an example. Somebody will say something and my wife will go, “That person really sounds upset.” I go, “Really? I didn’t sense that at all.” Or I’ll say something. I will say something a little bit loud and the dog just freaks. The dog just freaks. I’m not upset. I just said something a little louder. Again, we have a pre-conceived notion going into every conversation. That just destroys us. It’s not healthy.

Marsh Buice:

No, and it’s really, really important. You almost have to treat your customers every situation as a dry erase board.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah, that’s a great picture.

Marsh Buice:

I mean, because it really is. If you think about the dry erase board, what you wrote up there, Mark, it’s been up there for six months. And then when you try to erase it, it ain’t leaving. The ink is gone but you can still see the traces of it. Well, that’s our sales career. So many times what’s happening is, all of the poor habits, every thing in the negative… All these negative emotions that you’ve tied to your last customers, they’re staying right there on the board. When you erase it for AKA, a new month, a new quarter, your residue is still sitting up there because you did not treat those situations independently.

Marsh Buice:

I think some of the best sales people are those who are in the food industry. Because even though table number nine just stiffed me and they had a whole nine top and all the kids crumbled every cracker that was in the basket on the ground and they left me $1 tip. Guess what man, the next table I talk to, I can’t take that situation from that table and just blow up the next table because that person may tip me 30, 40%.

Mark Hunter:

BINGO. I love that. I got to backup, when you’re talking about the whiteboard, I think the answer is you just got to get a bigger whiteboard. So no, it’s okay. See that example of a wait staff is so true. It is because… And how many times have we been in a restaurant where the waiter, the wait person is caring about attitude?

Marsh Buice:

Yeah. It sets the tone doesn’t it? It screws up your whole… Because I don’t pay for the… Hell, I can cook a steak at home. It’s the experience that I’m there for. That’s what the customers are coming to you for man. It’s the experience that they walk away from this thing. What is the experience that you want to leave on them?

Mark Hunter:

See now there’s something to run with. Regardless of what you sell, there’s still a selling experience. There is a selling experience. I’m going to share an example. I’ll go and use a company name. Blue Man Group. Okay?

Marsh Buice:

Yeah.

Mark Hunter:

We’ve all been to, Blue Man Group. What a phenomenal show. Number of years ago, I was doing some work with them. One of the end results that we came away from was we said, we want to take the sales process and make it be just like Blue Man Group. We’re not selling tickets, we’re actually starting the Blue Man Group experience. So we change the vocabulary, we change the act, we change just… We actually hire different people. Because if you can’t have fun when you’re trying to book this group, or you’re trying to sell these seats, and you can’t interact with them in a Blue Man Group style, it doesn’t fit the model because we want the sale to be part of the experience. And it was amazing the results we had. Now this is what we found was very interesting. Repeat and referral sales went through the roof.

Marsh Buice:

Really?

Mark Hunter:

Because people had such a great time buying the tickets that they immediately called somebody else said, hey, you guys got to check out Blue Man Group. They’re coming to town, they’re doing, I don’t know, whatever and here’s… What happened is right after the event a group would buy tickets. 50, 100 tickets will say to a show and we would immediately follow back up with them right after the show. Oh yeah, they remembered the salesperson because they helped get the tickets several months or six months or nine months earlier and put the whole package together and do different things.

Mark Hunter:

Oh, yeah, we got to book again for next year. Oh, yeah, we got to do this. Because we made it an experience in what involved emotion. See, emotion is in every purchase. You want to make your sale and experience the customer appreciates. When they do that, they’ll refer you. They will refer you in a heartbeat.

Marsh Buice:

Yeah. Let’s pivot real quick because we need another…

Mark Hunter:

I know. We can use another three, four hours here.

Marsh Buice:

All right. So mind for sales. I would be remissed… I don’t even know which one to even hit on because for the purposes of this podcast, hopefully you’ll come on in the future and we’ll talk more about this. Let me speak to A Mind For Sales for me personally. I gotten away, Mark, from reading sales books because I was tired of the baller lifestyle. It was just no substance to it man. I just got sick of that. I came across your book on LinkedIn.

Marsh Buice:

I hadn’t read high prospect selling… I had been following you but I never read the book. Then I came across a mind for sales. Patrick Tinny had posted it. I was like, all right I’ll try the book. Man, it was one of those books I couldn’t put down. I’m telling you, you brought the fire back into me. I love sales. I love everything about sales. I just didn’t like what was being written about sales. You write in such a way that I swear dude, it’s like you’re standing right beside me. It’s not condemnation, it’s not hell and brimstone. It’s not… you’re not this, it’s really… I call you the king of zing. Because you have a way of zinging somebody and it’s like you hit me with a left hook, is like, oh wait, you just hit me, and it makes perfect sense and then now I can immediately apply it to my sales life.

Mark Hunter:

Well, thank you. That’s quite a compliment, wow.

Marsh Buice:

Man it was unbelievable. Let’s… In the few minutes that we have left, can you speak to the… Because I think the most important if I was taking anything out of the book was the success will and not to hit the reset button on… Setting up your week. Speak to Mondays.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah, the whole success wheel is first of all, success is not a destination. Success is a journey. Also don’t expect your manager to motivate you. Sorry, managers listening to this I’m letting you off… Now what you have to do is you have to create an environment for your people to motivate themselves. You have to motivate yourself and what I find… The success wheel is about Just getting rhythm. Just getting things going. I always say that first day of the week. I got to set an easy goal. I talked about in the book pizza goal. The whole thing out of the movie, Tommy Boy.

Marsh Buice:

I love Tommy Boy.

Mark Hunter:

Just get the movie Tommy Boy, you’ll know what I’m talking about-

Marsh Buice:

Did you eat paint chips as a kid?

Mark Hunter:

… when they talk about [inaudible 00:45:16] in there. Anyway. The whole thing is you have to set yourself up with an easy goal first day of the week. First few hours. This is so key because success creates success. Momentum creates momentum. What you’re doing is you’re just getting the wheel moving. I tell people, I tell sales people say man, I have a hard time picking up the phone getting going. I have a hard time.

Mark Hunter:

Okay. Then why don’t you make the first call to one of your existing customers, make the first call to one of your existing customers. “Hey, thank you for calling. Yeah, it’s great.” What’s interesting, that customer will pump you up. That customer will pump you up. Then you take a look at that list. Remember this list I tell you where you write your customers on one side, the outcomes are great. We’re going to go, “Hey, I can make a difference.” What does it do? Suddenly it says the calls I need to make to let people know of what’s available or what’s coming.

Mark Hunter:

Yeah, I’m doing them a favor. See, here’s the whole thing.

We can never forget that what we sell, is really just… It’s just the medium for what we do. Because our job is to positively impact people.

We talked about this earlier. I want to influence and impact people. My product, what I sell, that’s just the medium. I always tell people I could have been a plumber, I could have been an electrician. I could have been anything. I’ve chosen sales because it allows me to be in front of the most people to allow me to influence impact and be able to earn the right, the privilege, honor, respect to be able to talk with the people again.

Marsh Buice:

Right. Well, we are… I hope you would agree, I hope we can carry this conversation forward for a future episode because I don’t even think I touched my notes. The conversation was that good.

Mark Hunter:

But you know what though, that’s another thing about sales. Sales we never stop learning. I am continuously learning. Last night… I had a full day yesterday. Last night, I was capturing some notes for my next book. Ideas were popping into my head and from conversations I’d had over the day and different things. It’s just… A good salesperson never ends the day without learning something. Not having learned something. To me, that’s a great day.

Marsh Buice:

Yeah, it really is. Mark, first of all, everybody TSL Nation, get the book. But the $20 that you’re going to spend on a meal I’m telling you invest this into your sales growth, you must invest. I’m telling you, this book will totally change your whole concept of your sales and your life because sales is a lifestyle. It’s everything that we actually do. So Mark, if you would take us out with a final thought and also tell others about your blog and also your amazing podcast too man that people need to subscribe to as well.

Mark Hunter:

Thank you. Let’s talk about that real quick first. The website is thesaleshunter.com. Hunter’s my real last name. People always ask me, “Well, what was your name before…” No. Hunter’s my real last name. Thesaleshunter.com, hey, jump out there. There’s all kinds of stuff out there. The podcast I do is Sales Logic. We try to do it every week. Unfortunately, our schedules don’t always allow but it’s a great podcast. Meredith Elliot Powell, she’s the co host with me. We just talk, we just talk about sales.

Mark Hunter:

Anyway. But hey, the book is a mind for sales. And yeah, I really highly recommend it for people. I get more comments back from people who say it’s just like you’re just sitting there having a cup of coffee or a beer with me. But hey, here’s the thing I want to leave you with. Your goal is to know that at the end of the day, you’ve been a better part of each person’s day, that you’ve had a privilege of coming in contact with. When you do that you will have earned the right, the privilege, honor and respect. The job we do is not to sell customers.

Mark Hunter:

Our job is to help customers see and achieve what they didn’t think was possible. When we do, we deliver them an outcome they never dreamed imaginable. That’s how we create repeat sales.

Marsh Buice:

Mic drop. That’s it. That’s all TSL nation. Remember the greatest sale that you’ll ever make is the sale you own you because you’re more than enough. Stay amazing. Stay in the sales life.

 

You’re just one away

Mood: Some days I’m just ☝️ away from chucking the deuce ✌️& saying screw it…

On those days when I want to turn back I’m reminded too that I’m just “one away”- one corner…one call…or one connection away from catching my wave 🌊 …

Isn’t that the mystery to it all? To not know the answer to “How close?” nor “How much longer.”

The only answers are in my effort & through my effort, “one day” will arrive & I’ll be glad that I didn’t give in nor turn back even though I was that 🤏 close.

Decades later cadets can’t move forward because they caved into the temporary feelings of pain & uncertainty- ringing the bell 🔔, ending their hopes of becoming a Navy SEAL & living with a lifetime of regrets.

Quitting becomes your identity. Finishing becomes your legacy.

The “in between” is where it’s darkest & scariest.

You’re at the crossroads of transition or repetition.

You can choose to wade into the waters of uncertainty & unfamiliar- transitioning to a new dimension in your life…

or you can turn back & repeat a life you so desperately want to get away from.

Don’t turn back…because you’re just “one way.”

Stay amazing.

Your Skids or Ruts Are Due To Mismanaged Memory

In his book “The Magic of Thinking Big,” David Schwartz writes that a lack of confidence comes from mismanaged memory.

When you begin to lose, what do you tend to focus on? The wins or losses? 90% of your month could’ve been wins, but that 10% of losses erases all of those good vibes and you begin to focus and feed solely on the negatives.

What you withdraw depends on what you deposit.

 

Mismanaged Memory is due to withdrawing the funds of losses, shoulda-coulda-woulda’s, & blames, leaving you with insufficient funds towards your success.

Unsuccessful people dwell. Successful people dual.

The unsuccessful dwell on everything that went wrong whereas the successful people dual process the losses.

Instead of dwelling, successful people process the losses by:

  1. Taking ownership of the loss. You can’t change what you don’t own. Successful people look for the leaks & disconnects so that they can…
  2. Learn. Because they take ownership, they ask questions like, “What’s my role in this?” “What did I miss?” “Where is my disconnect?” so that they they can…
  3. Apply what they’ve learned toward future success.

Confidence is an investment not an inheritance. Every day you must invest in behaviors that support that investment- even when you aren’t seeing the results, you keep on investing.

Every time I’ve been on a slick spot, the losses intensified and my confidence plummeted because I suffered from Mismanaged Memory.

I trapped myself in an endless cycle of depositing/withdrawing losses. Because I didn’t activate my losses, I could only withdraw what I’d deposited.

You are in charge of your memory. What you deposit, you withdraw.

Here’s how you productively manage your memory.

Keep the losses as pennies.

Instead of letting the pennies mount up as loss after loss and end up weighing a million pounds of regret and shame, diversify the losses into: 1) Ownership 2. Lessons 3. Application

Yes, a loss is a loss, but don’t leave it as a loss.  Treat your losses as if you were investing in a mutual fund and spread the deposited losses in accounts of future wins.

With a mutual fund, you spread the investment out. So for you, break that penny of loss down & spread it into funds of 1) Ownership 2) Lessons & 3) Application.

Even when you add additional losses (& you will), they don’t stay as losses. Now that you’re managing your memory productively, the losses are diversified & compounded into future wins.

Hear this and 600 other episodes on The Sales Life Podcast. Hear it on Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app. 

Stay amazing! Stay in The Sales Life. 

Work in odds today. Bust up your “usually’s.”

Work in “odd” numbers. Bust up your “usually’s.”

Here’s my challenge to myself this week & want you to come along.

* Work in ODD numbers. Instead of smooth, rounded off numbers, let’s mix it up.

• Resistance Training: (weights, bands, or body weight) instead of 10 reps do 11

• Cardio: Trying to knock a mile out? Do 1.1 miles. Feeling salty? Ok 1.3 miles. (If you go to a smooth 2 then you’ve gotta end at 2.1)

Break up your “Usually’s” this week.

• “I usually get up at 7.” Make it 6:51 & do something productive (non social media). Prime your mind with 9 minutes of solitude; a video from Eric Thomas or David Goggins; or read 5 pages of a book you’ve been putting off.

• “I usually leave the office at 5.” Stay 11 minutes longer (set your timer) to work on something productive.

“I usually go home and crash.” Don’t even go inside- take a lap around your block.

🔥 The odd numbers seem so small that they’re just as easy NOT TO DO as they are TO DO.

So do them. (Here’s the rub) It’s so small that it seems like it doesn’t matter, right? …but they do carry meaning.

It MEANS you busted up your “usually’s” aka your comfort zone, increased your tolerance, & that compounded over time MATTERS because…

MATTER = RESULTS.

You’re not playing a singular game, you’re playing a compounded one.

Work in odds this week.

🚨Drop a comment below 👇👇

Prime your mind with The Sales Life Podcast. Nearly 600 episodes for your SalesLife. https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-sales-life-with-marsh-buice/id1292788623

A new episode out tomorrow! “Be a student of When”

You can’t practice being taller.

After a crushing loss, a volleyball player vented to her dad, “You can’t practice being taller.”

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As if the only advantage the other team to win was their height.

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And that’s what we do, right? We see the giants of our industry & we point to their advantages…

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But we fail to take stock in our own.

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Pound for pound many players I lined up against were stronger than me. But it didn’t stop me from becoming an All-American in football. Where that guy relied on his raw strength, I could out-think him. I watched film and spotted his tendencies so when we lined up, he was already beaten because I stayed out of his leverages (brute strength) & played within mine.

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Tall, short, dumpy, shapely, skinny, dark-skinned, ginger, deep voice, or soft spoken…

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EVERYONE HAS ADVANTAGES.

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Now use them to your advantage!

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I’m 6’3 & have a powerful voice. You damn right I use it as leverage. In my SalesLife.

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But the 5’5 skinny 35 year old who looks like he’s 22 has an advantage too. Where I may seem intimidating, his small, young frame is unassuming & will find it easier to maneuver in certain situations.

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Don’t waste another second wishing you had someone else’s heights of talent.

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Use what you got & leverage it for more.

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What’s been a “disadvantage” that you’ll now leverage & use as an advantage? 👇👇

Dealing with down days

Here are the Sales Bites from today’s episode of The Sales Life.

For more context check out the video by connecting with me on Facebook & YouTube.

Most importantly subscribe to nearly 600 episodes of The Sales Life Podcast. Find it in iTunes, Spotify, Amazon Music, iHeart Radio, & Deezer.

Hear the full episode of this post here.


  • We all have down days. You can feel down, just don’t stay down.
  • Down days weigh you down.
  • What starts off as a moment of failing becomes a monument of failure & for the rest of your life, you you point to your monument saying, “That’s why I couldn’t be successful.” (Or you can point to the moment and say that’s why I was successful 😉)
  • When you are down you have a critical choice to make: Blame or Analyze.
  • Blame: You can blame the economy and others or you can …
  • Analyze: As painful as the loss is, instead of blaming, analyze your part. This takes extreme ownership. (Gotta keep it real here) Honestly, what role did you play in the blow up.
  • Be down, just don’t let it take you out.
  • Down days are wake up calls. Life’s trying to wake you up & kick you out of your comfort zone.
  • Maybe you’re way (I mean way) off track. Seeing how far you’ve slipped can be overwhelming. You’re 70 lbs overweight; fired & have zero new-world skills, or been out of school for a decade.
  • Where do you start?
  • (Hint/Answer) You start at start.
  • Don’t waste days, months, or another year talking about how far off track you are. (Who cares & stop counting)
  • Instead start and begin mitigating the loss.
  • Do you want to win or succeed today? Of course you’d say, “I want to win.”
  • Think again.
  • I want you to succeed.
  • Because a win has one result…one outcome vs to succeed has multiple scenarios & in those scenarios are mixed with wins, losses, & tons of experiences that you can apply moving forward.
  • I can’t always win. But I can always succeed. (Now that’s Tweetable)
  • Anyhew this is the short version. Want more? Click the links & connect with me and say Hi.
  • Remember the greatest sale you’ll ever make is to sell you on you. Because you’re more than enough.
  • Stay amazing. Stay in The Sales Life.

  • “IN” isn’t your responsibility. “Of” is.

    So many people are trapped in the “IN” moments of their life.

    Something happened in their life from childhood to being blindsided with a divorce or termination & all they ever talk about is what happened “IN” their life.

    IN moments suck & may not be all your fault but you’ll never grow into the person you aspire to become if your “IN” dominates your every waking moment.

    Your “OF” moments are where you take responsibility OF what happens after the IN.

    Ask yourself today, “Am I talking about the ‘IN’ or the ‘OF?’ right now?”

    It takes the emphasis from how the story started to THIS IS HOW IT ENDS.

    The ball won’t always bounce your way. You may lose a deal, not get the promotion, or get slapped with (& lose) a frivolous lawsuit.

    With “OF,” you control the narrative and set the course for the outcomes.

    What’s your “OF” after your “IN?”

    Insecurities are BS Artists

    INSECURITIES are B.S. artists. Everyone & I mean everyone has insecurities..so don’t think that you’re alone

    Your insecurities can be an advantage for you because they call you out.

    When your insecurities whisper to you that you’ll always be broke, fat, & single…when insecurities sneer that you’ll never bounce back or become successful…

    Run at your insecurities.

    The thing it says you’ll never be, respond with, “Oh yea?! Prove it!”

    Running at your insecurities will make the shadows disappear. What’s crazy is you’ve been running for years from those insecurities, but when you charge them, your insecurities run from you. (Ever had one of those “That wasn’t so bad” moments?”)

    Running at your insecurities cultivates your courage. Courage is built by running toward the thing you most fear not by running (emotionally or physically) from the thing you don’t want to deal with.

    Don’t know how to deal with it? Start by charging at it.

    Running at your insecurities teaches you how to breath because you learn to stand in the tension, take control of your wild thoughts, and lean in.

    Charging your insecurities defines what you’re made of (courage) instead of reminding you of what you’ll never be.

    Your insecurity is an empowerment & is right there for the taking.

    Insecurities think you’re not strong enough to take them on.

    Don’t mask the insecurities by buying a bigger shirt (to hide the love handles) or a case of beer to drown out the regrets.

    Run at it & say, “Oh yea? Prove it!”

    What is 1 thing you’re running at this week?

    Stay amazing! Stay in The Sales Life.

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