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Why The Lock Down Is Your Best Opportunity For Sales Training

Matthew Pollard is an internationally-recognized consultant, speaker, blogger, author, mentor, coach, and serial entrepreneur with five multi-million dollar business success stories under his belt, all before the age of 30.

In this episode of The Salesman Podcast, Matthew shares why right now is the best time in your entire selling career to get in some sales training.

You'll learn:

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Featured on this episode:

Host - Will Barron
Founder of Salesman.org
Guest - Matthew Pollard
The Rapid Growth Guy

Resources:

Transcript

Matthew Pollard:

I think that this is the best opportunity that salespeople have ever had to focus on learning and development. Right now, salespeople are sitting at home for the first time, feeling disconnected from their teams, freaking out about losing their jobs. One of the things I’ve seen that I’ve not really seen before is people from different levels of government get in front of cameras and share with everybody that’s out there what is going on and what they need people to do and talk about how they’re going to get back to prosperity. I think that’s the reason we don’t have mass anarchy on the streets right now.

 

Will Barron:

Hello, Sales Nation, I’m Will Barron, host of the “Salesman Podcast,” the world’s most downloaded B2B sales show. On this episode, we have the legend, the return of the legend that is Matthew Pollard. He is the author of “The Introvert’s Edge” and he’s known as the rapid growth guide. On this episode, we’re diving into how, if you are working from home right now during this COVID-19 pandemic, how you can sharpen the axe, so to speak. How you can put it in sales training, you can put it into place right now. That means when the markets do open up, you’re going to start crushing it. You’re going to run into them headfirst and drive a tonne of revenue in the not-too-distant future. Everything that we talk about is available in the show notes for this episode over at Salesman.org. And with that, let’s jump right into it.

 

Will Barron:

So in today’s episode, we’re going to talk about sharpening the axe or essentially sales training. Should we be sales training, or should we be expanding into the marketplace instead of this moment in time? That’s why I want to get your thoughts and opinions on, because my thoughts and opinions are probably massively skewed hosting this podcast every day, talking about training every day, owning one of the best sales trading platforms on the planet over Salesman.org. So my opinions are probably massively, for the right or wrong reasons, massively biassed here.

 

Should Salespeople be Using Lockdowns as an Opportunity to Do More Sales Training? · [01:40] 

 

Will Barron:

So in your opinion, Matthew, should salespeople be using this? And this is perhaps a mindset kind of concept that we can touch on here. Should salespeople be using this as an opportunity to do more training rather than being down in the dumps and depressed that no one’s buying?

 

“I think that this is the best opportunity that salespeople have ever had to focus on learning and development.” – Matthew Pollard · [01:55]

 

Matthew Pollard:

You know, I think that this is the best opportunity that salespeople have ever had to focus on learning and development. I mean, if people, I don’t want to go into my whole story because we talked about it in the past podcast, but the backstory is I was super introverted, had no business being in sales, fell into sales because I lost my job just before Christmas and I ended up in commission-only sales and after five days worth of product training and not a single second of sales training, I got thrown on this road to go cold call. And I mean, it was 93 doors before my first sale. And I then had to make a decision that I either took that as the way it was always going to be like most people that aren’t great at sales and just decided to hustle through that for the rest of the year, which would have been a horrible thing. But a lot of salespeople do that. They just believe that it’s about the grind.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Or give up, which is what another whole group of salespeople do. Instead I made the decision that sales was a learnable skill and I actually taught myself that skill on YouTube. And I tell this whole story around the fact that literally I went home and I spent eight hours a day learning the steps in the sales process from YouTube. I mean, a lot of, I mean, this was before learning and development programmes like yours existed, which I would have died for. But again, I had no budget back then either. And then I’d spent eight hours in the field practising those skills. Well, every time I tell this, I talk about going from 93 doors down to 75, down to 48, down to 30, right down to three doors on average per sale.

 

Matthew Pollard:

And I say about six weeks in my boss pulled me in and said, “Matt, we’re kind of blown away by this, but we just got our national sales figures and it turns out you’re the number one sales person in the company.” And I talk about the fact that it took six weeks. And the one thing that I always get people say after that is, “Matt, you know what? I really valued your story. I didn’t know that sales was systemizable. I didn’t know that an introvert like you like me could be successful at sales. The problem is my boss is always driving me for sales targets every single day. And I go home and I’ve got a family life. I can’t give you that eight hours a day for six weeks.” And I’m like, “Well, give me four hours a day for 12 weeks.”

 

Matthew Pollard:

And remember, I went from nothing, having no business in sales, to being the best in the company. You get drastic effects by the first few hours as well. And everyone’s like, “Well, I wish I was just given six weeks to focus on sharpening the axe, as opposed to constantly going through that grind and hustle.” Yet now, everybody has been, I’m not going to say gifted because that’s horrible, but they’ve been given a period of time that they can focus on sharpening the axe. But now everyone has a new excuse. “Oh no. Now I’ve got too many things going on. I can’t concentrate on it.” So just take it for the opportunity that it is.

 

Whose Responsibility is it to Start Training Salespeople? The Sales Manager or the Individual Salesperson? · [04:49] 

 

Will Barron:

So a bit of a leading question here because I’m sure myself and the audience know where you going to go with this, but whose responsibility is it to start training right now and to up your level of sales skills so that when the economy does come back around, everyone’s ready and rocket to role? Is it your sales manager to pay for some training and get it in front of you and force you to sit down and motivate you every day? Or is it your job as a quote professional to get on with that and do the` training yourself in this period?

 

Matthew Pollard:

So I think it’s two. I think it’s both. And the reason for that is right now, salespeople are sitting at home for the first time, feeling disconnected from their teams, freaking out about losing their jobs. And I’ve been inspired to see a lot of great sales managers reach out and say, “Hey, can you do a segment with my team just to inspire them?” And the first thing I say is, “Yes, I’m happy to do that.” I mean, I just got listed by Top Sales World Magazine as one of the top 50 speakers in the world. So I’m getting inundated with those. I’m happy to do those, but there’s actually one thing that sales managers can do well before that, which is let them know what’s going on. What I’m finding is leaders are hiding under their desks, not communicating with their teams, worried about communicating with their bosses and their shareholders about what’s going on as opposed to being…

 

“One of the things I’ve seen that I’ve not really seen before is people from different levels of government get in front of cameras and share with everybody that’s out there what is going on and what they need people to do, and talk about how they’re going to get back to prosperity. I think that’s the reason we don’t have mass anarchy on the streets right now.” – Mathew Pollard · [06:08] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

One of the things I’ve seen that I’ve not really seen before is people from different levels of government get in front of cameras and share with everybody that’s out there what is going on and what they need people to do, and talk about how they’re going to get back to prosperity. I think that’s the reason we don’t have mass anarchy on the streets right now. Yet leaders aren’t taking that, they’re not doing that. So I think leaders, what they need to do is twofold. One, is communicate with their staff members, that they are focusing on the fact that they’re going to still be here in six, 12 months time, they are focusing on the things that they can do now and also what employees should or need to do to maintain employment. Because the problem is that the staff members are freaking out about losing their jobs, which is forcing them into this paralysis that are causing them not to act and not to learn.

 

“The problem is that the staff members are freaking out about losing their jobs, which is forcing them into this paralysis that is causing them not to act and not to learn. And what I’ve seen is managers that are doing this well right now as saying, “This is a great opportunity for you to sharpen the axe because we want to hit the ground running in Q3 and Q4.” – Matthew Pollard · [06:54] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

And what I’ve seen is managers that are doing this well right now as saying, “This is a great opportunity for you to sharpen the axe because we want to hit the ground running in Q3 and Q4. So let’s focus on getting our systems right.” They’re also helping them realise that they are actually massive opportunities right now, because for the first time there’s the senior leadership that they’re trying to tap into, or the consumer is actually at home thinking about either saving money or they’ve got the first time to think. So by communicating this and then helping them sharpen the axe, that’s hugely powerful. What I will say though, is that all of those people that are at effect by the situation saying, “My boss, isn’t communicating to me. I don’t know what I’m doing,” these are the same people that aren’t getting up and showering in the morning.

 

Matthew Pollard:

I mean, when this started happening, I got up earlier and I went for a three mile run every morning to get my head clear. That allowed me to go through, we were talking offline about the grieving process. It allowed me to fly through that in a matter of about three days. It also allowed me to sit back and say, “What opportunities are out there and then what opportunities for growth are there for me?” So what I would suggest that salespeople do is take a step back and say, “I can choose one of two modes.”

 

Matthew Pollard:

One is I can say, “The Coronavirus is happening to me,” or I can say, “How can I claim responsibility for where I’m at right now?” And come into that place and say, “What things have I been crying to my managers that I haven’t been given time to learn that I can spend time sharpening my axe on. And then what opportunities are in the marketplace of people that either have said they just don’t have time to review my product or service I’m trying to sell or that all of a sudden now how can I build a story narrative around why this is the perfect time to do this?” And then utilise those opportunities.

 

Matthew Pollard:

So I would say it is both people’s problems or both people’s opportunities, but at the moment I find that most people’s brains are in spasm. And what we’ve got to do is get you out of that scarcity reaction mindset and start you thinking about, I mean, I made like some of my best money during the 2008 crash when everybody else was freaking out. And I think everybody that takes it as an opportunity will do that again during this climate.

 

Will Barron:

So it seems like there’s, to give, I’ll say for myself, Matthew, that when someone says to me, “Do this and that’s your only option.” I tend to go and do it. So hopefully we can give people a bit of a kick in the ass if they need it by giving them a bit of a training plan throughout this podcast episode. So it seems like there’s three elements that we could be talking about here with the training. There is general sales skills of what you should be saying, who you should be saying it too. Then there’s another layer of which you used, have you used stories and conversations and content essentially and tools and understanding and all that seems to be a second layer. And then there’s a third layer of perhaps, which has totally escaped me now and I can’t read my own handwriting as I jot this down, but there’s a third layer of… Oh, there we go.

 

Time Blocking is the Starting Point when Trying to Utilise the Extra Time During the Pandemic to Seek Training · [10:28] 

 

Will Barron:

So there’s a third layer of perhaps fixing the pipeline and going through all that and doing all the systematic parts of the selling process that we haven’t done in the past five years, or perhaps you’ve never done. And you’ve taken over on a territory from Barry seven years ago, who didn’t do it either, and it’s just, everything’s a mess in the CRM. So those three layers of actual sales skills, of building content, stories and narratives, and then managing CRM and the software side of things and tools side of things. Which one of these would be the starting point if you were still in a sales role and you had this, we’re going to call it an opportunity rightly or wrongly, if you have this opportunity to take a step back so that you can then run out the market when it opens back up in a few months?

 

Matthew Pollard:

So the first thing I would get people to do is take a step back and realise that if you focus on just one of those, you’re going to go insane over the next eight weeks. So what I would suggest people do is time block, right? So again, your manager, if you spend all your time doing the sales skills and nothing else, for their sanity, educate them on what you’re doing so that they don’t think you’re just sitting at home watching Netflix, which everybody’s worried about right now. And you’ve got to remember, entrepreneurs have had staff members in the Philippines and remote staff in other cities, other countries for years. This is the first time your manager may be managing a group where they can’t see that they’re working every day. So the first thing that I would say to the sales people is, 

 

“In the past managers wanted ideas. At the moment, managers want solutions. Now, if you’re a manager, your staff don’t want ideas, they want solutions and they want to be told what to do.” – Matthew Pollard · [11:57] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

And also realise that at the moment they want direction some of the time, because they actually don’t know the answer. So if you’re listening to this and your manager isn’t, I would sit there and say, “I feel we should be spending our time doing this, this and this. What do you think about that?” Because if their managers are in spasm still, they’re not going to be able to say “No, this is how I dictate your time.” In the past managers wanted ideas. At the moment, managers want solutions. Now, if you’re a manager, your staff don’t want ideas. They want solutions and they want to be told what to do. So what I would suggest, and this is a great opportunity for salespeople, by the way, to be seen by management as future leaders if they take this opportunity.

 

“If you’re thinking you can only do four hours a day right now, remember that your employer is currently paying you to sit at home, and at the moment they’re not making the revenue that they’re trying to make to pay your wage. So really think about how much time you can give them, because right now it’s the time to appreciate, not blame your organisation.” – Matthew Pollard · [12:22] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

What I would suggest you do is pull out your schedule. Now, if you’re thinking you can only do four hours a day right now, remember that your employer is currently paying you to sit at home and at the moment not making the revenue that they’re trying to make to pay your wage. So really think about how much time you can give them, because right now it’s the time to appreciate, not blame your organisation if you currently have a position that they’ve said, “Hey, just go home and do your thing.”

 

“Let’s say you pick eight hours, what I would do is break that into chunks. Let’s call it two-hour blocks. And I would spend the first two hours of every morning doing the most mentally intensive part of my day, which would be learning the next step of the sales process or creating the sales system because that requires a lot of creative thought.” – Matthew Pollard · [12:51] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

The second thing that I would suggest is when you look at that, let’s say you pick eight hours, what I would do is break that into chunks. I would say, let’s call it two-hour blocks. And I would spend the first two hours of every morning doing the most mentally intensive part of my day, which would be learning the next step of the sales process or creating the sales system, because that requires a lot of creative thought. Now I would suggest going for a run or doing some form of energising activity to get those endorphins running so that you can actually think clearly.

 

“Now it is really important right now that you tell your husband, your wife, your kids, no one’s talking about Coronavirus until after five. Otherwise, your mental brain will start to go into spasm about whether or not you can get bread, as opposed to what the next part of the day is going to look like.” – Matthew Pollard · [13:49] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

The second thing after that is I would do something that’s a lot more administrative. So I would then move to pipeline management and then look at how I can structure my CRM system, how I can put more information in, how I can tag people like I’ve always been trying to do to start to really get things under control. Then what I would do is I would then go and have lunch. Now it is really important right now that you tell your husband, your wife, your kids, no one’s talking about Coronavirus until after five, because otherwise your mental brain will start to go into spasm about whether or not you can get bread, as opposed to what’s the next part of the day going to look like.

 

“There are a lot of studies around sales education and when you start looking at sales process and sales skills, as opposed to the psychology of selling, there’s a diminishing return as you get better and better at sales where it becomes more about mindset.” – Matthew Pollard  · [14:19] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

So it’s really important to have a conversation with your entire family about what mommy or daddy being at work means and how to keep your brain psychology in the right place. Because there are a lot of studies around sales education and when you start looking at sales process and sales skills, as opposed to the psychology of selling, there’s a diminishing return as you get better and better at sales where it becomes more about mindset. And right now you’re in this new world where your manager can’t hype you up, where you can’t feel the buzz in the office, but you also need to control yourself against those negatives. So I would say that the next part, the next segment is around communication. So what I would do is first communicate with my boss about what I’ve achieved so far today to let them know that I’m on board.

 

Matthew Pollard:

The next thing I would do is I would use the next part as relationship development. So I would pick up the phone and call my pre-existing customers. I would let them know. I would check in on how they’re doing. And I would tell them stories about why it’s an important time to double down on their investments, because this is a great time to really think through how they’re utilising the technology or the service, or just checking on with… Be empathetic though. Don’t be a bulldog salesperson, be empathetic. And for the extroverts out there, listen to the answers, hear what they say, empathise. And just even if you’re the shoulder to cry on, remember, a lot of managers are lost right now and they have no idea what to do. So what I would suggest is that you communicate with them, you empathise with them. You let them know that you’re on their side and you start to provide them direction at this time.

 

Matthew Pollard:

And then in your final quarter, yours last two hours, what I would suggest you do is really focus in on your own mental health and say, “What is it that I can do tomorrow as part of my education? What is it that I can…? Who can I reach out to tomorrow? And what new implementation can I put into my CRM system to truly get myself into a much more effective state when I get out of this hibernation?” Automation is one of the things that I would honestly suggest would be a wonderful thing that everyone looks at. How could I automate some of the processes of followup? How can I structure it in a systematic way as opposed to, “Oh, I should call that person tomorrow.” So that when you start to get busy, again, all of a sudden you’re not then dropping the ball on all the things you used to drop the ball on.

 

Will Barron:

Dude, Matthew, you are so smart and you’ve just given me a whole marketing campaign for our product as well. So two days of this. We’ve had a bunch of people come on the show and your systematising your day is great. I love that, but nobody has talked about feeding this back to your manager. Now I know this in the past for me when I worked in sales, medical device sales, this was a blind spot for me and over the handful of sales managers, most of them I was a pain in their ass because I would always hit or crush my sales target but I was difficult as heck to manage. And it was because I’d never done any management. They didn’t communicate with me really what they wanted in return. And one of these things that they wanted in return was feedback, whereas I wanted to be autonomous.

 

Will Barron:

I wanted to just especially medical device sales, I’m driving around in my rep mobile, this BMW all day, dropping off equipment, selling it, go into theatres. I thought, “Just leave me alone. I’m hitting my targets. Why do you want this constant back and forth?” And if you look at it in a positive light, maybe they wanted to coach me. They wanted to help me get to that next step, or depending on who the sales manager was, perhaps they wanted more control and they wanted to make sure that I was on track because they were insecure in their own role or whatever it was. But this idea of feeding back to the manager is not come up in any of the podcasts I’ve recorded over the past few weeks. So that’s brilliant. And I don’t want to plug our product. I’m sure. I don’t have a product today, but that’d be of a waste. I’ll ask you in a second how to go about this.

 

The Metrics Salespeople Should Track and Report Back to their Sales Managers to Show That They’re Indeed Productive · [18:10]

 

Will Barron:

But Salesman.org has a what we call your sales skill. So when you’re doing workshops, when you are doing the sales code assessments, when you’re doing the quizzes and everything else, it all adds up to your sales skill score. And so that goes up over time. It diminishes over time if you let it lack lustre, if you don’t put the effort in. And so that could be something as an example. Again, I’m not trying to promote the product too much here, but that could be an example of something you could report each day of this number went up. So with that, Matthew, over the… An obvious one would be, I made these calls to these current customers today to build these relationships. What else could we track and what other metrics could we report back to a sales manager to not necessarily keep them off our back, but to make sure that they’re not stressing out, that we aren’t watching “Tiger King” on Netflix and just sat in our pyjamas all day?

 

“Just because you’re a great salesperson does not make you a great sales manager. That is a separate skill.” – Matthew Pollard · [19:33] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

So one of the things and I will backtrack because I only had a job for about a year before I started up my own business and then built five multimillion dollar success stories. So what I can tell you is I was promoted seven times within that 12-month period. And while I was a great sales person and I learned by the way, they threw me into a management position. I had no idea how to manage and lost 20 salespeople within the space of a week. Just because, and I’ll say this slowly, just because you’re a great sales person does not make you a great sales manager. That is a separate skill. So I went back to YouTube to learn how to be a sales manager, but yes, I was promoted seven times.

 

“My secret to success is what I call momentum story. And extroverts, by the way, do this almost naturally and that’s why a lot of people will say extroverts tend to get promoted a lot quicker. And the reason for it is an introvert does something but tells nobody. The extrovert thinks about doing something and tells everybody.” – Matthew Pollard · [20:12] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

Now, I would say that I was promoted for two reasons. One was my ability to sell and get other people to sell. But that’s actually not what leadership is really looking for. What leadership is really looking for is ideas and what they’re mostly focused on more than anything is something to tell their bosses that they’re obtaining, they’re succeeding. So this is actually something I’ve never shared on a podcast before, but my secret to success is what I call momentum story. So any time, and extroverts, by the way, do this almost naturally and that’s why a lot of people will say, extroverts tend to get promoted a lot quicker. And the reason for it is an introvert does something but tells nobody. The extrovert thinks about doing something and tells everybody.

 

Will Barron:

Yep. Sure.

 

Matthew Pollard:

So because of that, and there are lots of granular perspectives of that. But what I would suggest is everybody follows this middle ground, which is what I do is I have an idea that I think can build momentum. What I will then do is speak to three people. I will talk to somebody that works directly for me or if you like, you could also talk to a customer depending on what the idea is. And if you’re just a low-level sales person, then there’s no one you can talk to at that level. But I would talk to someone below me if I could to practise telling that narrative. I used to practise telling my father. I mean, remember I was 18. You can tell your husband or wife, but I would practise talking about my idea about how I was going to use something to create momentum or how I was going to target this new strategy, this new campaign, how I was going to learn something.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Then I would talk to somebody directly across from me, one of my, somebody that’s of the same level as me. And then I would talk to my manager about what I was going to do. What I would then do is I would do the activity. Then I would tell all three of them about how it was going. So it forced me into doing the action because I’d committed to doing it. And then secondly, it had people excited about the direction that I was going. What that then meant is my manager would tell their manager. And sometimes I would pass my general manager in the hall way and he was talking to my manager and my manager would ask me how that was going. And because of that, I became the central ideas person.

 

“People pay more for ideas than they pay for activities.” – Matthew Pollard · [22:12] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

Here’s the key for this. People pay more for ideas than they pay for activities. So, because of that, what I would become is the momentum of ideas person. So any time… Let’s say, I decided, let’s say I was going into the Salesman.org training section and I was looking for specific types of education. Like maybe I decided that I was going to focus on storytelling. Maybe I say to somebody that, “Right now, I need to create new stories, not stories around growth, but stories,” maybe I was selling health insurance. And so many people in life never get health insurance because they’re way to busy. Well, guess what they’re not right now? Busy. So because of that, what I could do is create a story around somebody that never had time to get health insurance. And because of that, their family was left in a struggling position. Gosh, he wished he hadn’t time.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Now, of course the objection is going to be, “But I don’t have the money right now to invest in health insurance.” Potentially. I don’t think that you’re going to be right there. People are still spending money. And right now in scarcity mindset, they’re thinking about insurance more than ever, but let’s say I’m totally wrong. If we go to the date when everyone’s released from their captivity and went back out into the world, wouldn’t it be nice if I’d already done the due diligence on what insurance plan I wanted to buy, and then I could buy it directly on that day? Wouldn’t it be nice to have the next month, three months worth of sales, ready to sign up in as soon as we’re let out. So I start talk about the fact that I want to create these when you get outside… While you’re in captivity, plan your insurance so that you don’t end up like John, Darrell or Trevor.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Now I tell everybody about that. Now my boss is sharing that what we’re doing is creating these stories. Actually it was Matthew’s idea. So now my boss gets his boss to then invite me into a training because gosh, at the moment, we’re all craving content, right, and ideas that can help us get the edge. So now this lowly salesperson that nobody knows, is now teaching three teams how to create one of these stories. Now I’m going to get promoted as soon as we get out of this. And I’ve got a bumper to bumper sales where… And let’s face it, our commissions a lot of time are based on quarters.

 

“I would suggest that salespeople start to manage up, start to manage across, and become the thought leader in this challenging climate. Because if their manager is not dealing with this well, you’re going to give them an opportunity to not look bad to their leadership. And they’ll be forever grateful. And more often than not, you’ll end up their colleague very shortly.” – Matthew Pollard · [24:40] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

So while I’ll have a down quarter, when I get that multiplier effect in Q3 of all of those sales hitting in the one month, I’m going to be a really happy guy or girl. So that is the way that I would suggest that salespeople start to manage up, start to manage across and become the thought leader in this challenging climate. Because if their manager is not dealing with this well, you’re going to give them an opportunity to not look bad to their leadership. And they’ll be forever grateful. And more often than not, you’ll end up their colleague very shortly.

 

You’re More Likely to be Retained When Layoffs Come Knocking if You’re the Person Who Makes The Manager Look Good · [25:02] 

 

Will Barron:

So we do this in sales, right? We want to make, if we’re selling to middle management, we want to give them a product or service that makes them look great in front of their boss, so that we cover both the economics of the organisation and we tick those boxes, but you also cover the motivation of the individual to break through the status quo and do business with us. So is this a similar kind of process that we should be doing with our sales managers? Just to frame it up, you give us a great formula there which I’ll include in the show notes. I’ll script that out and probably do some diagrams or chart it out on the page. But as another way to look at it in a simplified way is we are less likely to get let go if the shit really hits the fan over the next few months, if we are the person who makes our manager, whose manager, whose manager looks great, and we are the ideas person.

 

“No salesperson should ever motivate themselves with a negative-faced motivation. Make it positive.” – Matthew Pollard · [25:48] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

So one of the things I will say is no salesperson should ever motivate themselves with a negative faced motivation. Make it positive. So I want everybody to have in their mind, they’re doing this because they’re going to get promoted. However, let’s-

 

Will Barron:

Well, let me say something. Why is that? Because I know that I will take, I’ll probably do longer term goals on a positive mindset, but with short term, I definitely move faster if there’s a stick on my ass, as opposed to a carrot in front of my face.

 

“Most people set long-term goals and short-term pain motivators. That is a mistake. What I would suggest is sure, long-term goals are fine. However, the problem is most people set these ridiculous targets that seem unattainable to them.” – Matthew Pollard · [26:20] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

So let me explain goal-setting slightly differently. Most people set long-term goals and short-term pain motivators. That is a mistake. What I would suggest is sure, long-term goals is fine. However, the problem is most people set these ridiculous targets that seem unobtainable to them. So therefore the stick motivation is much more, it’s much stronger. 

 

“Until you start knocking goals out of the park, you need to set shorter-term goals that have a high level of self-efficacy to them, or allow you to build self-efficacy.” – Matthew Pollard · [26:46] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

What I would suggest, what I call self-efficacy goals or belief goals. So one of the things that I tell is until you start knocking goals out of the park, you need to set shorter term goals that have high level of self-efficacy to them, sort of allow you to build self-efficacy. What I mean by that is let’s say I set a target for the next three months that I am going to get these three managers to know who I am and be super excited or to build a pipeline to have this.

 

“By having short-term pain and long-term motivation, of course, this pain is closer than that motivation. So of course, it’s going to motivate you more. However, this type of pain, especially in a situation like we’re in right now, creates unnecessary anxiety and causes people to go into paralysis.” – Matthew Pollard · [27:31] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

Now I can knock that goal out of the park and I can truly celebrate. And when I say celebrate, I mean, scream out loud so your wife or husband runs in the room thinking you’ve just stubbed your toe or something’s gone horribly wrong, right? What I’m trying to get salespeople, and I love long-term motivation, I get that. But by having a short-term pain and a long-term motivation, of course, this pain is closer than that motivation. So of course, it’s going to motivate you more. However, this type of pain, especially in a situation like we’re in right now, creates unnecessary anxiety and causes people to go into a paralysis. So what I would suggest people do is set very specific goals around what they’re going to obtain in the next two weeks, the next three weeks, little goals where they can knock them out of the park.

 

“In truth, long-term goals aren’t going to cut it right now because you don’t know what the world’s going to look like when we’re let out of captivity. And we also don’t know how long that captivity is for. So most and this comes down to the buyer’s mindset. But most people haven’t realised that they’re selling to a different mindset right now.” – Matthew Pollard · [28:07] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

And in truth, long-term goals aren’t going to cut it right now because you don’t know what the world’s going to look like when we’re let out of captivity. And we also don’t know how long that captivity is for. So most and this comes down to the buyer’s mindset. Most people haven’t realised that they’re selling to a different mindset right now. You’ve got the captivity mindset, which is all around forward planning or solving pain points in this captivity period that we don’t know how long it is. Then we have a new mindset of rebuilt. No one’s ever sold to this mindset before because even during the 2008 crash, it was, “Oh, the world’s gone to hell. Oh, now we’re back into trying to rebuild.” we’ve got this period of like where the world’s just pressed pause. Now that doesn’t mean you can’t sell. As a matter of fact, we found tonnes of opportunities to sell in this period as long as you realise you’re selling to a different mindset and that’s something you need to take on.

 

Matthew Pollard:

But knowing that about your customers, use it as a mirror and realise that your mindset is also different. Therefore, setting six, 12-month goals when you don’t know whether you’re going to be allowed out in four weeks, six weeks, eight weeks, 12 weeks is also madness. So what I would use this as an opportunity to do, is set what I call micro goals or self-efficacy goals and say, “In the next four weeks, or even in the next two weeks, these are the things that I’m going to achieve.” And then knock those out of the park. Now in truth, yes, if your manager sees Will is constantly coming up with ideas on how we can adapt in this marketplace, constantly educating and advising people, and you know what, I’ll plug your product for you.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Then everybody should watch this video because they found it really helpful with this specific thing. Then because of that, they’re going to go, “Well, if I’ve got to cut five people out of my team of 20, it’s not going to be Will because he’s showing up every day. I know he’s not on Netflix. And his customers are sending me testimonials about how amazing he was that he didn’t try and sell. He was just empathetic, but I will double down my spend as soon as I’ve got my budget back.” So it’s not going to be Will, but that’s not how I would want to be focused because if you’re constantly focused on losing your job, it’s like when you’re constantly, when you’re playing basketball. If you like, don’t miss, don’t miss, don’t miss, as opposed to going through the steps of scoring. I would focus on forward faced motivation that’s equally concurrent. Like if you’re worried about losing your job in the next four weeks, focus on getting promoted in the next three weeks.

 

Will Barron:

Got it. That is, that makes a lot of sense. I really appreciate that, Matthew. And I guess, because I’ve always been focused on again, long-term goals, super positive, what we’re building, five, 10-year goals and we’re kind of progressing along all those. But I always have had that rightly or wrongly, well wrongly from the sound of things, that this element of, “Right now we need to get this done because of this bad thing,” as opposed to engineering perhaps a situation where it doesn’t happen because you’ve done the task anyway, if that makes sense, as you alluded to there of rather than worry about getting sucked, get promoted. So you’ve now got that opportunity to slip and slide beneath that. I love that, Matthew, really do, mate. And with that, and generally we could go off to another episode soon because we could dive into this in a whole lot more detail.

 

Matthew’s Thoughts on How the World of Sales is Going to Change Post-Pandemic · [31:26] 

 

Will Barron:

But for the time element that we’ve got here, I’ve got one final question for you, mate. And that is how do you feel like sales is going to change other than the obvious that there’s probably going to be more people working from home, we’re going to be selling to perhaps people who are working from home as organisations realise that they don’t need these big fancy offices anymore and they can cut back costs there. How do you think that sales is going to change fundamentally, if you feel it’s going to change fundamentally, over the next kind of few months to few years after this crisis hopefully passes?

 

Matthew Pollard:

Well, there are two things that I would hope to see change. One is that I think right now we have lots of instant gratification salespeople. So we live in this world where, well, we lived in this world, past tense, where you didn’t really have to be that good to sell. And if I did something today, this morning, I would probably get a sale or something by this afternoon. Now also it adds to the pipeline, and people, it’s not whether or not they’re going to do it. It’s just when they’re going to do it and if it’s going to be you. So you don’t have to be that good a salesperson. But what I find is because of that, people have gone to this focal point of, “I don’t really need to learn a sales system. I just need to put in activity. Activity means results.”

 

“The definition of sales was derived from the Scandinavian word to serve your customers. Now you can’t serve your customers and worry about making sales unless you know a sales process.” – Matthew Pollard · [33:07] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

What I will hope to see is, especially because of this period, I’m hoping that people go back to sales process in a much more profound way. And the reason for that is, I mean, one of the things that I’ve been pushing with my book, “The Introvert’s Edge” is that most people just focus on the bulldog techniques of sales and people have kind of lost what sales was… I mean, it kind of got become used car sales pitch if you like, and the definition of sales was derived from the Scandinavian word to serve your customers. Now you can’t serve your customers and worry about making sales, unless you know a sales process. What I find, though, is most people grab a couple of things and they can sell enough to survive, to stay in that hamster wheel. So what I am hoping happens in this period of time is people realise that they can come back to a sales process and spend the time learning a sales process.

 

Matthew Pollard:

My book, “The Introvert’s Edge,” I literally, my publisher hates me when I say this, but I tell people you don’t need to buy my book. I mean, I’m on a mission to teach introverted people that they can be amazing salespeople and that if they follow a regimented sales process, then they’ll beat the extroverts hands down because in truth, they’ll hold onto it for dear life because without it, we kind of suck at selling. Extroverts like to wing it and because of that, they’re less likely to follow a regimented process, which means that that’s why we’ll win. Now, extroverts take this as an opportunity to learn a regimented process. But what I say is in the first chapter of my book, which you can get at TheIntrovertsEdge.com, you can download the first seven, well, the seven chapter headings or what I call the seven steps to a sale.

 

Matthew Pollard:

If you do nothing more than write those chapter headings down, grab what you currently say in the sales process and put it under those headings, you realise that there are things you say out of order. You’ll also realise there are things that you’re saying to customers that does not fit. Throw that out. You shouldn’t be saying it to customers. And then you’ll realise that there are some massive gaping holes in the sales process, which is usually asking not questions, but the right questions, and asking, sorry, telling amazing stories that aren’t, “The customer wanted this. So we gave it to them,” but value driven, emotionally centred stories where you make the buyer the super hero. Almost, not like a case study where it’s like a CNN report, but a story like you’re reading about a character in a novel. And because of that, if you just do that, you’ll double your sales in the next 60 days, even in this economic climate.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Now, what I’m hoping is that people will use this as an opportunity. I mean, Abraham Lincoln said, “If I was given six hours to chop down a tree, I’ll spend the first four sharpening the axe.” What I believe will happen is the smart salespeople will use this as an opportunity to sharpen the axe and they will fly forward in this economy to be the ones that survive and weather this storm when we get back to Q3 and Q4 and leave everybody else behind. What I believe will then happen is it will bring us back to sales acumen over personality. And that will be the first step. And the second thing will be that people will need to realise that yes, they are selling to people. There are a lot of big finance companies that are like, “I’m paying for a massive office in New York city for what reason?” So now you have this benefit where in the past, your decision-makers were in an office that lost 40% of their time to people going, “Can I ask you a question. Are you around for a minute?”

 

Matthew Pollard:

Now they’re actually more available, but we have to work out how to contact them in different ways. Now, yes, email is a great way to do that, but there are all these new tools because people working from home crave connection. It blows me away how many people still write me notes on LinkedIn when voice memo is proven to get amazing results. It blows me away that people are constantly posting on Facebook, but they’re not sending, or like people… I noticed one person so far, who’s done this, who called me through Facebook Messenger. And I answered because I was like, “Well done. You’re finally starting to think outside the square.”

 

“The people that focus on sales acumen and the people that focus on leveraging new ways of contacting their clients in a disconnected world that they now live in will thrive in this economy.” – Matthew Pollard · [36:57] 

 

Matthew Pollard:

What I think is going to change is the people that focus on sales acumen and the people that focus on leveraging new ways of contacting their clients in a disconnected world that they now live in even more so than they ever have before, will thrive in this economy. And the people that have just done what they’ve always done, will unfortunately not get to do it anymore because they’ll be the ones that get laid off.

 

Parting Thoughts · [37:49] 

 

Will Barron:

I tried my best and managed not to say anything and interrupt and agree with that, Mathew. And regular listeners to the show, especially over the past six months or so, will know that all I’ve been preaching is a systematic selling process, is sales and business acumen, It’s insane. It’s actually hilarious how close your thoughts on this are to mine. So I’ll have to have you come back on and to talk about sales process. I feel that’d be a really interesting episode to get your thoughts and opinions and the facts and the data on that. But with that, Matthew, we’re out of time today, mate, and I appreciate you coming on the show. Tell us where we can find the book and where we can find out more about you as well, sir.

 

Matthew Pollard:

Absolutely. Well, I appreciate that. So obviously everybody can check me out on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram. There’s a tonne of free content that I put out because I learned on YouTube and it blows me away how many people pay for content where there’s so much great free stuff out online. So definitely check out those platforms and consume the free videos that I put out. MatthewPollard.com has a tonne of other content, but what I would really suggest people do is go to TheIntrovertsEdge.com and download that first chapter and focus on a sales process.

 

Matthew Pollard:

And what I will tell you is, regardless of whether you choose my sales process or somebody else’s sales process, pick one. Sales is not martial arts, right? You don’t want to learn lots of different types of martial arts. Pick one sales process, whether it’s mine or somebody else’s. Pick it, learn it, and then bolt on all of the other tactics once you’ve nailed that. But unless you have a regimented process, don’t bolt on, don’t try other things. Focus on a complete follow the bouncing ball system and then go from there. And if you want to do that, I would suggest you go to TheIntrovertsEdge.com, download the first chapter for free and get started with that process.

 

Will Barron:

Good stuff. I’ve got a copy of the book. I recommend it as well, Sales Nation. I’ll link to everything that we talked about in the show notes of this episode over at Salesman.org. And with that, thank you, Matthew, for joining on the show and what an awesome episode. I really appreciate it, mate.

 

Matthew Pollard:

My pleasure, mate. Thanks for having me on again.

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