Fa l l 2 0 1 3
Managers, Are you Prepared
By Dave Mattson, President and CEO of Sandler Training
“Everything flows; nothing stands still.”
The business world is not immune to
change. Companies grow in size…and
they shrink in size. They expand their
market reach, sometimes, and contract
it at other times. They introduce new
products and services and discontinue
products and services. And, they
change the ways in which they create,
promote, price, and deliver their
products and services.
Most frequently, as companies
experience change, the jobs of their
employees, and the ways in which
employees must perform their jobs, also
change. Many organizations believe
that employees who are paid to do
a job can simply be told to change.
Perhaps the belief is that employees
will see the need for the change as the
company does, recognize the long-term
value to the company (and ultimately
to themselves), and readily accept the
But, it rarely works that way.
People will resist—even fight—change
they don’t understand or perceive
as not in their best interest. (Tweet
this) If the objective of the change is
perceived to be driven by corporate
greed, exploitation, or betrayal, or the
end result is perceived to be harmful,
they will not buy into it. This fact
underscores the need to communicate
to the people affected by and expected
to carry out the change, the reasons for
and the benefits of the change.
Also, people cannot change overnight…
even if they want to. You can’t train,
motivate, or simply tell people to change.
People transition through change.
(Tweet this) Change must be phased
in as existing routines and priorities are
phased out. It will take time.
Managing organizational change
requires thoughtful planning and
responsive implementation which
includes communication and
consultation with, and the involvement
of the people affected by the change.
Because, when people face change,
they typically experience a range of
emotions. And, as they transition
through change, their reactions often
change—some in a positive way, some
in a negative way. They may experience
feelings of anxiety, fear, and depression
intermingled with feelings of approval,
exploration, and commitment.
If you were to plot their positive and
negative emotional reactions over time
on a graph, the curve would look like
a sine wave. If you attempt to force
change on people, the peaks and valleys
continued on page 4
Table of Contents
The Secret Behind LinkedIn
Do You Know the Real
Secrets to Successful Selling?
Case Study: TDIndustries
Managers, Are You Prepared
Presenting With Impact
The Two-Minute Coach
Do you know the
to successful selling?
By Howard Goldstein, Sandler Training
The search for the secrets to achieving
success in the sales arena has been going on for as long as there have been
salespeople. And, a countless number
of books and audio/video programs have
been published that promise to reveal
those secrets—including secrets to:
And, if they are interested in what you
have to offer, they have their own needs,
wants, preferences, and priorities on
which they would base a buying decision—which, again, may be very different from the elements you believe they
should be considering.
So, forget about your company’s advertising and marketing hype that focuses
on the features, functions, benefits, and
advantages of your product or service.
Forget about the awards your company
has won…the proprietary processes they
have developed…and the superior afterthe-sale service for which they are known.
Forget about those things, at least temporarily, until you determine which, if
any, are relevant to the real needs of
your prospect. And if you discover that
some facets of what you have to offer
are relevant, only focus on them. Resist the temptation to bring up additional
aspects as a means of “adding value.”
Most often, the prospect will interpret
your “added value” elements as “added
(and unnecessary) costs.”
Creating Rapid Rapport
Eliminating Price Objections
Dealing with Difficult Prospects
Delivering Powerful Presentations
Overcoming Stalls and Objections
Generating Never-Ending Referrals
Creating Customers for Life
And many, many more.
There is, however, only ONE real secret to
successful selling…and here it is:
There are no “secrets” to successful selling…just important
stuff you don’t know. (Tweet this)
What sort of “important stuff” might you
Here is one particularly important thing:
Prospects don’t care about you.
Prospects don’t care about you, or your
company, or its products or services.
And, they don’t care about your long list
of reasons describing in exacting (excruciating?) detail why you believe they
should buy your products and services.
Prospects have their own concerns and
associated reasons why (or even if) they
would invest time considering your product or service—which may be (and most
likely are) very different from the reasons
why you believe they should.
Don’t get me wrong, you need to be well
informed about your products and services. However, if you want your prospects
to “care” about you, at least enough to
engage in conversations, you must be
well informed about them (Tweet this)—
their businesses, their industries, their
markets, their goals, and their challenges.
And, that leads to the next thing you may
not know: “To whom” you sell is less
important than “the circumstances” in
which prospects find themselves.
What does that mean?
In order to better target prospective customers, i.e., identify “to whom” to direct
their selling efforts, sales organizations
will often create a profile of an ideal prospect—usually based on existing customers. To identify businesses and organizations, the type of data typically used
is geographic, business category, organizational structure, and market conditions. For example: Privately held manufacturing companies in the Northeast,
generating between 20- and 50-million
dollars in annual revenue, employing 50
to 100 people. To identify individuals,
demographic and psychographic data
is frequently used. For instance: College educated urban dwellers between
the ages of 29 and 55 who are employed
by professional services firms.
Developing an ideal prospect profile
based on such data is a good starting
point. But, it’s just that—a starting point.
It’s not the characteristics of the target
market that determine the likelihood of
finding an opportunity. It’s whether the
circumstances in which target-profile
prospects find themselves are out of
alignment with their intended goals, concerns, expectations, needs, requirements,
desires, etc. … and the degree to which
your product or service can bring things
back into alignment. That’s the real measure of the quality of an opportunity.
Because selling is more about creating outcomes for people and less about
whether those people fit a particular
Suppose, for example, that you sell marketing services and your company has
a program to help professional services
firms grow their client bases by increasing their online presence. A prospect on
your profile list would be considered a
“high quality” prospect under the following circumstances:
a. growing its client base was a goal,
b. there wasn’t a program already
in place that was meeting goal
If a company wasn’t looking to expand
its client base, or if it was, and it already
had a program that was accomplishing
its objectives, that company wouldn’t be
a high quality prospect.
Because the “circumstances” wouldn’t
justify the investment of their time to explore your program. Why would someone take the time to explore solutions to
a nonexistent problem? They wouldn’t.
So, before you develop a prospecting
message with which to reach out to a
prospect, do a bit of research. Find out
as much as you can about the President/
Owner/CEO and his or her company, industry, market, and competition.
Next, identify the circumstances—challenges, problems, and opportunities the
company likely faces—for which your
product or service creates favorable outcomes. Then, you can develop an appropriate message to “test the waters”
with those circumstances and engage
the prospect in a conversation about a
timely relevant (to them) topic.
Let’s follow through with the previous
Prospects don’t care
about you, or your
company, or its products
Here is the situation:
Market research has revealed the
following circumstances: Growth
for management consulting firms is
lagging behind other professional
Your company has developed a particularly effective program to help
management consulting firms attract
and obtain new clients despite the
current market conditions.
And, here is the opening of an appropriate prospecting pitch:
“We work with management consulting firms that are struggling to grow
their client lists in today’s business
environment. By expanding their online presence and improving their online message, we’ve helped them to
not only increase the number of online-generated leads by an average
of 60%, but also improve the leadto-client conversion rate by an average of 30%.”
The message is primarily focused on the
prospect rather than the salesperson and
his or her company. It describes the circumstances the prospect may be facing—
struggling to grow in today’s business
environment. And, it identifies potential outcomes available to the prospect—
more leads and more clients.
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Managers, Are You Prepared for Change? continued
of the curve will be more pronounced. Conversely, the earlier you inform people about the change, involve them in the change, and
obtain their buy-in, the flatter the curve…and the more quickly you reach the final stage of transition.
Managers, the considerable responsibility for implementing change typically falls on your shoulders. To meet that challenge, you must
be able to interpret, communicate, and enable. You must understand the reasons for and objectives of the change and identify the
benefits that will accrue for your people and your department.
To help your people transition through change, you must first identify starting and
ending points—where you are today and where you want to be as a result of the
change. Then, you will have to identify the “why,” “what,” and “when” elements
of getting there.
People transition through
change. Change must be
phased in as existing routines
and priorities are phased out.
It will take time.
You should understand the rationale for, objectives of, and benefits from the
change. You will need this information in order to inform your people about the
change and gain their acceptance. The more they understand about the change
and its upside, the more likely they are to be building blocks of change rather
than roadblocks to change.
Next, involve the people affected by the change and integral to carrying it out in a collaborative effort of developing a plan. Change
will not take place without the cooperation and contribution of your people. You should also establish who will be responsible for
what, by when, how it will be measured, and to whom the results will be reported. Each participant in the plan must know exactly
what will be expected from him and how he will be judged in fulfilling his part of the plan.
Once you implement the plan, you will have to monitor progress and provide appropriate feedback to keep your people and the plan
on track and on time. If activities have to be adjusted, that’s OK as long as you keep your focus on the final destination.
In the business environment, change is unavoidable. The manager who recognizes the dynamics of change can make the transition
through change as painless as possible for the people affected. The more you inform your people about the need for and benefits of
change and involve them in the development and implementation of the plan for change, the smoother the transition will be. Change
will take place because of your people, not in spite of them.
Presenting with impact
Want to be
By Brad McDonald, Sandler Training
BEST of the BEST?
Are your sales presentations more like
a Gettysburg Address or a Gettysburg
Oration? Few people know that President Lincoln was actually the secondary
speaker at Gettysburg. The program for
the dedication of the Gettysburg Cemetery, four months after the famous 1863
battle, listed Dedicatory Remarks, by the
President of the United States after Oration, by Hon. Edward Everett, the main
speaker. Everett spoke for two hours, Lincoln…two minutes. In a letter to Lincoln
written the following day, Everett praised
the President for his eloquent and concise speech, saying, “I should be glad if
I could flatter myself that I came as near
to the central idea of the occasion, in two
hours, as you did in two minutes.”
A sales presentation doesn’t carry the
gravity of the Gettysburg Address. But
many are all too frequently akin to Everett’s painfully long oration in that they
bore and confuse the prospect, lack a
compelling argument, and provide too
much unsolicited information more than
they excite or arouse curiosity. Worst
of all is that most lead to a “THINK-ITOVER” and not a decision. Don’t believe
it? Just ask yourself when the last time
was that you got excited about a proposal or presentation for which you were on
the receiving end. Are yours that much
better than everybody else’s?
If you want to present with impact, and
create a curious, stimulated audience,
here are some tips; a few are taken, with
respect, from our sixteenth president:
Open unexpectedly. The human
brain is normally on autopilot and not
fully engaged in what others are saying. If you start with, “Folks, I’m so
excited to share our proposal with
you today, I know you’ll love it,” the
continued on page 7
recognized as the
A n e nt i r el y n ew l eve l of
distinction for Sandler-trained
Sandler Training® Certification
measures sales training
knowledge and successful
application, moving beyond
classroom to success in the
field. How would your sales
skills stack up?
Speak to your Trainer today for more
information or to see if you qualify.
By Keith Daw, Maximize LinkedIn, CEO coach, and Sales Trainer
Ask most people, “What is LinkedIn?” and you’ll hear one of two responses: “A professional Facebook” or “A professional networking site.” I will give you half credit for
either, but, LinkedIn is far more than simply the marketing and promotional piece 95%
of people talk about. LinkedIn is the most powerful prospecting, qualifying, and referral
generating tool available. Companies, teams, and professionals who have a system, a
plan, for incorporating LinkedIn within their weekly and monthly activities are far more
efficient and effective with their prospecting efforts. (Tweet this) Period.
During Maximize LinkedIn training sessions, I teach the following: beyond the importance
of looking professional and having something smart to say on your profile, LinkedIn
is being laser-focused when searching for suspects and qualifying hard to determine
whether to make them prospects. Who do you need to speak to within an organization?
How are you connected? Better still, are you requesting the introduction in a manner
which DOES NOT make you sound like the stereotypical salesperson?
Who has looked at your profile within the last week? Month? Is this important? It probably is not, unless allowing potential clients to walk by unnoticed is a big deal to you.
Have you looked at their profile? Did you share something valuable and relevant in
their world? The quality of your contacts is paramount to your success with LinkedIn.
Your ability to get strong (not warm) introduction directly to the individual(s) you wish to
speak to is priceless. (Tweet this) Should you upgrade? Yes, if you plan to use LinkedIn for prospecting, upgrade to a premium account. In nearly two years, I have yet to
see a client who has implemented the Maximize LinkedIn plan, and NOT paid for their
subscription several times over.
Companies, teams, and
professionals who have
a system, a plan, for
within their weekly and
monthly activities are far
more efficient and effective
with their prospecting
The two most common questions I receive regarding LinkedIn are, “How do I find and
qualify the right prospects?” and “I have hundreds of connections and no idea what
to do with them; can you show me?”
Maximize LinkedIn was designed to systematically address these two questions and
a myriad of others. There are four methods to uncover suspects: By individual, company/organization, via advanced searches (industry segment, geography) and through
an alumni feature. Have a name from a business story or colleague? Know the name
of the company, but not the person with whom you need to speak? Enter them into the
white box at the top of the screen, hit enter, and the magic starts.
The key is identifying the 2nd Connection; someone who knows how awesome you
and your company are and would be willing and able to make an introduction to the
desired individual. Here is where most people struggle, however. If you accepted any
and all LinkedIn connection requests sent your way, the odds of a quality introduction are quite slim. If you have not worked for them, with them, or have not spoken to
or met with them about their business, do not accept them (until you do). The age old
adage, “Garbage In, Garbage Out” plays true on LinkedIn searches.
If you attended a four-year college or university, the Alumni Network tool allows you
to research and directly contact your fellow alumni via graduation year, geography,
company, or industry segment. Have a client who keeps promising a referral, but has
not delivered? The little magnifying glass within their Connections section of their profile is the most effective way to identify specific contacts with whom you would like to
speak. Imagine the power of hand-selecting your own referrals from your most trusted
colleagues? Yes, it happens. Every day.
So ask yourself…do you know how to Maximize LinkedIn?
LinkedIn (with design) is a registered service mark of LinkedIn Corporation.
The services of Sandler Systems, Inc. are not affiliated with or sponsored by LinkedIn Corporation.
Keith Daw is the Vice President of
Business Development and a trainer
for McDonell Consulting & Development, Inc., a licensed Sandler Training® center. In addition to working
with professionals and companies
in the areas of leadership development, sales and sales management,
and strategic customer care, Keith
has developed Maximize LinkedIn as
a powerful resource for his clients
and business community. The Maximize LinkedIn training has been delivered to thousands of professionals
and companies regionally, nationally,
and internationally over the past two
When we first met TDIndustries in 2011, it was a 65-year-old company with an ambitious 10-year growth plan. Trouble was, meeting the plan was going to be next to impossible without a drastic adjustment to its sales model. TD’s sales force was taking
a reactive approach rather than a proactive one, focusing on managing and selling to
existing customers rather than aggressively seeking new ones.
In order to meet its growth plan, the construction side of TD’s business needed to
double over 10 years; its service side needed to triple. TD didn’t have a process or a
program in place to make that happen. One thing it did have was the knowledge that
it needed world-class sales training, and fast. That’s when we entered the picture.
We started off by doing a lot of listening. We heard about TD’s pain, talked about its
struggles, asked a lot of questions and then got to work creating a customized plan
for its sales team.
The plan, which honored the fact that every customer is different, took a multi-focused
approach that included:
Boot camps for both its sales force and its sales leadership designed to help them
understand the Sandler selling system, why it works and how it works.
Monthly webinars covering specific sales topics.
Quarterly reinforcement training that allowed Sandler principles to become
second nature to TD’s sales force over time, resulting in lasting changes rather
than ineffective quick fixes.
Digital library of sales training materials that TD’s team members can access
whenever, wherever they want.
Accountability benchmarks identified by TD sales leaders with guidance from
Sales certification program to keep TD’s sales team working toward its goals.
We gave TD’s sales professionals a scientific, methodical approach to selling. We combined it with tools to guide them step-by-step through every new business opportunity.
In less than three years, the company’s sales conversion rates went from five
percent to 50 percent, (Tweet this) with the business units that truly embraced the
Sandler system having absolutely no issues hitting their sales goals – and, indeed, hitting them for the very first time.
From a cultural perspective, TD’s experience with Sandler has been significant. “Life
is much better than it was before from a financial reward perspective and from an empowerment perspective,” says one TD executive.
In the words of another, “We changed the game. Now we don’t waste time on bad
deals or chase RFPs like our competitors do. We create opportunities, (Tweet this)
and Sandler made all the difference in helping us do that.”
Sandler helped us move from being a team of ‘farmers’ to a team of ‘hunters’ when
it comes to developing new business. In Sandler, we found our world-class sales
– Kyle Hogue, Senior Sales Manager, TDIndustries
Company description: One of
America’s largest and most respected mechanical construction
and facility services companies
Accolades: Included in “The 100
Best Companies to Work For in
America” by best-selling business
authors Robert Levering and Milton Moskowitz; named a National
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the
Year Award for Principle-Centered
Leadership; made Training magazine’s inaugural Top 50 Training Organizations list
Key challenges: The need to empower its sales force to proactively
seek new business rather than simply managing accounts that found
their way to its door
Sandler solution: Multi-focused
approach that gave TD’s sales force
the skills, confidence and tools to
transition from a reactive approach
to a proactive one
Have a success story to share in the
next issue of the Sandler Advisor?
Submit your organization’s story at
Presenting With Impact continued
audience is probably heading out the
door, at least mentally. When Lincoln
opened with a biblical allusion, “Four
score and seven years ago….” the
audience had to engage their brains
to figure out just what that meant.
Use imagery and metaphors. Lincoln’s usage of the imagery of birth,
life, and death in reference to a nation “brought forth,” “conceived,”
and that shall not “perish” no doubt
stimulated the imagination of his listeners. Instead of promising reliability, you might say, “George, neither
rain, nor sleet, nor snow will keep us
from delivering on time,” thus conjuring up the ever present mail man
who George sees visiting his office
daily. Now George has a picture to
which he can relate.
TALK LESS! Silence CAN be Golden, especially when it’s yours! Two
minutes may not be enough time for
you to deliver your message, but it
was long enough to create the most
memorable speech in American history. Most people like to hear themselves talk more than they like to
hear you or me talk. People generally need fewer words to absorb and
more time to PROCESS what they
are hearing. (Tweet this) Break up
your presentation with questions,
probes, and pauses. Get your audience engaged and talking.
conclusions your prospects reach
will have more potency than the ones
you make for them. (Tweet this)
President Lincoln made one small mistake in his address. He said, “The world
will little note, nor long remember what
we say here.” I guess he was right about
Edward Everett’s oration. If you want your
sales presentations to be memorable and
lead to action and not boredom then try
something different. Take some tips from
Abe Lincoln; he might just have been the
best salesman ever!
Don’t RESCUE. Let your listeners
work out their own questions and
answers as much as possible. Too
often sales people want to jump in
and solve every minor objection. The
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