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How The CIA Closes Deals (Hypnosis, Interrogation And More)

Dan Crum is a former Polygraph Examiner and Special Investigator for the CIA. He is also a Certified Hypnotherapist and spent time working for Tony Robbins where he learned Coaching & Consulting.

In this episode of The Salesman Podcast, Dan shares how the CIA Method can be used to take control of the selling conversation and get more deals closed. 

You'll learn:

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Featured on this episode:

Host - Will Barron
Founder of Salesman.org
Guest - Dan Crum
Creator of The CIA Method, Author, and Peak Performance Coach

Resources:

Transcript

Will Barron:

Coming up on today’s episode of The Salesman Podcast.

 

Dan Crum:

In interrogation, they think it’s tough and rough and yelling or screaming, and in fact, it utilises … I’ll just tell you this inner secret. We utilise something we call the RPM method and all it stands for is R stands for rationalise, P stands for project blame, and M stands for minimise. And without going deeper into all that, the whole purpose is to connect with the person that you’re interrogating. So for me to be an authority, oftentimes it’s just the circumstances surrounding the event and not actually anything I have to say or do naturally. So, if you came to a location that you didn’t even know existed before, or you’d driven by, and then you realise, “Oh my gosh, this is a CIA location,” that in and of itself and going through guards and potentially barbed wire and all these different checkpoints to get you in the room with me, that in of itself makes you feel very nervous and realise this is important and this really matters.

 

What Does it Mean to be a CIA Polygraph Examiner and is it the Same as What We See in Movies? · [01:34] 

 

Will Barron:

Hello sales nation, my name is Will Barron, I’m the host of The Salesman Podcast, the world’s most downloaded B2B sales show. On today’s episode, we have Dan Crum. He is a former CIA polygraph examiner turned sales expert and author. That’s what we’re getting into in today’s show, what the CIA can teach us about sales and how to interrogate our customers. You can find out more about Dan over at ciamethod.com. And with that said, let’s jump right into today’s show. You were quote-unquote, a polygraph examinator in the CIA, I want you to start the show by telling us what that actually looks like, what that actually means, and of course, the question you probably been asked a million times, is it just like what we see in the movies?

 

Dan Crum:

I wish I could tell you it was exactly like you see in the movies, but I think the big reveal is it’s actually a lot more calm, tame and nice than what you see in the movies. In fact, I think probably the most common now, taught version of how you interrogate somebody because that’s always the part that you see in movies, right-

 

Will Barron:

Sure.

 

“We utilise something we call the RPM method and all it stands for is R stands for rationalise, P stands for project blame, and M stands for minimise. And without going deeper into all that, the whole purpose is to connect with the person that you’re interrogating so they can admit to something they prior didn’t want to tell you” – Dab Crum · [02:10] 

 

Dan Crum:

… in movies, an interrogation, in interrogation, they think it’s tough and rough and yelling or screaming, and in fact it utilises … I’ll just tell you this inner secret, we utilise something, we call the RPM method and all it stands for is R stands for rationalise, P stands for project blame, and M stands for minimise. And without going deeper into all that, the whole purpose is to connect with the person that you’re interrogating so they can admit to something they prior didn’t want to tell you, but we’re able to rationalise it on their behalf, tell them why it’s not that … Like, “What you did, we get it, we understand.” Project blame, it sounds uncouth, but it’s actually fine to blame victim or blame circumstances for what they did. And then minimise, like, “Compared to somebody a lot worse than you, what you did is not that big a deal.” And in the process of doing that, if you watch a CIA polygraph exam, you would be like, “Wow, I thought the interrogation wouldn’t be so nice,” because I’m befriending them in a sense to connect and influence them to get them to tell me something they prior didn’t want to tell me

 

Can Authority Figures Influence Human Behaviour? · [03:20]

 

Will Barron:

How much of all that comes down to being the authority figure in the room? I say this from a perspective of, if you tried to interview or interrogate me, I’d be crapping myself and I’d be such a mess of emotions, you’d get whatever you want out of me. But if you’re interrogating someone who is probably trained in not being interrogated to be calm, cool, and collective, and probably wouldn’t see you as an authority, so that would neutralise some of that benefit. So how much of all this is … Is it important for you to be an authority in the conversation?

 

“If you came to a location that you didn’t even know existed before or you’d driven by, and then you realise, “Oh my gosh, this is a CIA location,” that in and of itself and going through guards and potentially barbed wire and all these different checkpoints to get you in the room with me, that in of itself makes you feel very nervous and realise this is important and this really matters.” – Dan Crum · [04:10] 

 

Dan Crum:

That’s a great point. So, for me to be an authority, oftentimes it’s just the circumstances surrounding the event and not actually anything I have to say or do naturally. So, if you came to a location that you didn’t even know existed before or you’d driven by, and then you realise, “Oh my gosh, this is a CIA location,” that in and of itself and going through guards and potentially barbed wire and all these different checkpoints to get you in the room with me, that in of itself makes you feel very nervous and realise this is important and this really matters. I don’t have to do much though, to say something to you or come across, or give an aura, or a presence that’s going to make you concerned.

 

Be in Control of the Conversation Using Assumptive and Commanding Language · [04:36]

 

Will Barron:

Because the reason I asked that Dan, is it seems that most big B2B sales conversations that the audience are having, whether they like it or not, and they may not feel like the buyer that they’re sitting opposite with is the authority. The seller, the audience may feel like we’re both on level pegging field here, but the buyer probably thinks that they’re an authority, they’re the one in control. So, how does that change the dynamics of a conversation where you’re trying to influence someone?

 

Dan Crum:

That’s a great question. So, in my training, I always am telling people to come from a position of … and I know they say about assume, never assume, but I always say you come from an assumptive place that they are going to buy what you sell. So, from that perspective, I promote using commanding language, more authoritative language. It doesn’t have to be authoritative in the sense that your tone of voice or you’re coming from … like you’re an authority figure, but commanding language like, “We’re going to do this, and then we’re going to do this when you buy,” if you use that term. I’m using assumptive language and commanding language to give them that sense without necessarily having to use tone of voice to do it.

 

The Direct Correlation Between CIA Interrogations and B2B Sales Conversations · [05:50] 

 

Will Barron:

Because I’m fascinated with the CIA element of your previous roles and how this translates to sales, how does this translate when you don’t have someone hooked up to electronics you’re reading different signals from them, is it possible to, I don’t want to use the word interrogate maybe, but to semi-interrogate a customer without all that benefit that’s on your side from the electronics?

 

Dan Crum:

Absolutely. So, all I simply did was I took everything that I had learned in the CIA as a polygraph examiner, and I broke it down into steps, and I basically created seven steps, which we can talk about if you want.

 

Will Barron:

Yep.

 

Dan Crum:

And then I looked at the direct … I really do believe it’s a direct correlation between what I did throughout the process of polygraphing and interrogating somebody, and what you do in the sales process. So, I literally just converted those seven steps into the seven steps of what I called the CIA method to teach people how to sell. So, I do believe there’s a direct correlation, but probably the most common thing I’ve gotten throughout my life is people asking me, how. How did you go from that to sales? And the story actually, we can go into as much detail as you want, but I was in sales my whole life from a young age, then got into that and then got back into sales. I felt that everything I did as a CIA polygraph examiner was helped because I had done sales before. I was using a lot of my sales skills and brought them into the room in a polygraph situation.

 

Dan Crum:

Then what I was realising after the fact was everything that I had learned, I went to graduate school for polygraph and all the CIA training, I thought, “Wow, this makes me so much better at sales.” So, I think they compliment each other so well.

 

The Relationship Between B2B Sales and the CIA Polygraph Examiner Role · [07:38] 

 

Will Barron:

If someone’s listening to this now, they’re career B2B sales professional, they are super talented at what they do, what parts of the sales process or the ability to sell, would they find useful in a polygraph role?

 

Dan Crum:

Well, I have to tell you a little bit different part of the story, because this will make sense. So I worked for Tony Robbins, I don’t know if you know who he is?

 

Will Barron:

Yep, yep.

 

Dan Crum:

And with working for Tony Robbins, I learned coaching and consulting, but I first started as a salesperson for him. So, I sold his seminars and I sold his products and services, all that kind of stuff. In the process of learning to sell for Tony Robbins, you learn a different style of sales. So he uses something, he calls it neuro-associative conditioning. It’s really just formed from NLP, which is neuro-linguistic programming. He didn’t use this at the time, but I’m also a certified hypnotherapist. So, hypnosis is like NLP, but when you’re deeply relaxed in a certain brainwave state. But anyway, so what I had done in learning to sell specifically, I’d say for Tony Robbins, I brought that into the room because I was using NLP slash hypnosis tactics or strategies with people that I was dealing with.

 

Dan Crum:

Now, I can’t do it in the traditional sense because everything’s being recorded or watched, and they wouldn’t allow it. I couldn’t hypnotise somebody. But what I can do is I could take the ability to connect with you, the ability to influence you. I think, I don’t think, I know I’ve taken it to a higher level because I would do a little test to see how well we’re connected, how well I could influence you. That’s just through the series of questions that I would ask, things that I would do in the process. And then it’s almost like, “Gotcha.” I can tell right there that I can influence you or that I can lead you to where I want to go. So, by the time we get to an interrogation, I’m like, “You’re ready to roll.” You’re going to be telling me what I want to know.

 

How to Succeed in Sales Using Neuro-linguistic Programming · [09:40] 

 

Will Barron:

This is the last interview of my day Dan, and I’ve been looking forward to all day. And now you mentioned hypnosis, there’s probably 15 conversations that we can possibly have. But something you said there, say I want to test this, is there a way that I can put this into practise? I’m going to go back to the house after this interview, my girlfriend’s going be there, she’s cooking us tea. How can I test how much influence I have over there perhaps by asking a series of questions? Is that possible to do in one podcast episode? If you was to teach us this, or is it decades of training that needs to come into play?

 

Dan Crum:

No, I could absolutely teach it to you. I want to give credit where credit’s due, so what I’m about to teach you literally was originated in NLP, so neuro-linguistic programming taught this tool. You hear it a re-said many times in books and programmes and stuff like this. So, the two things I’ll teach you really quickly are mirroring and matching, you’ve probably heard of that?

 

Will Barron:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

 

“Set up the room to win. What I mean by that is if you’re in a house, if you’re in a boardroom, even if you’re over Skype like this, or any sort of video platform, try your best to be able to see the whole person. So, put no barriers in the way of you and that person.” – Dan Crum · [10:43] 

 

Dan Crum:

And pacing and leading. That’s a common tool that I use to first connect with people and then to influence people. So, to connect with people and how you could use this today and how every person could use this in sales, is I’d say set up the room, set up the room to win. What I mean by that is if you’re in a house, if you’re in a boardroom, even if you’re over Skype like this, or any sort of video platform, try your best, and this is great for you except for you have a table there, try your best to be able to see the whole person. So, put no barriers in the way of you and that person.

 

Dan Crum:

The reason for that is so you can see everything about them, so you’re reading body language. In this case, we’re not trying to tell if they’re lying or not. We’re not reading deception, but we’re reading, let’s say their mood or the way they’re feeling. It’s not much to decipher, really it’s if you sat in a living room or you sat in an office and you pull the seat around and you guys sat face-to-face, facing each other in just regular chairs, what you can simply do is first mirror their physiology, mirror the way they sit. So, if they cross their legs, cross your legs, just like them. If they lean back in their chair, lean back in your chair. If they lean forward as they talk to you, lean forward.

 

Dan Crum:

If you notice them gesturing a lot and using hands, gesture just like them. If you notice that every question you ask, and again, this is not an interrogation, but you ask a question and you notice them look down and process, and then they lean forward and answer, when they ask you questions back, or you’re in a conversation, you can do the same thing. You can process the same way and lean forward. That’s just simply, they call it mirroring and matching.

 

“The reason mirroring and matching is so effective in what I use, the term connecting or rapport people use is because people like people like themselves. If you see two people connected, friendships, relationships, whatever, you’ll be amazed at how much you’ll see them sitting like each other, standing like each other, leaning, doing these things. And that’s just physiology, which to me is the most powerful.” – Dan Crum · [12:07] 

 

Dan Crum:

The reason mirroring and matching is so effective in what I use, the term connecting or rapport people use, is because people like people like themselves. If you see two people connected, friendships, relationships, whatever, you’ll be amazed at how much you’ll see them sitting like each other, standing each other, leaning, doing these things. And that’s just physiology, which to me is the most powerful. But you could also do it with your voice. So, a loud talker, talk a little louder. If they’re a soft talker, talk a little softer. If they’re a fast talker, try to keep up with them. If they’re a slow talker, definitely slow down because a slow talker, you lose connection or you break connection if you talk fast and they talk really slow. So, just pay attention to that.

 

Dan Crum:

So, both the physiology with your body and with voice, speed, volume, intensity of the way they speak, try to mirror that. That automatically will help you connect. Now, how do you step beyond that and influence them? It’s pacing and leading. Would you like to hear about that?

 

Will Barron:

For sure, yeah.

 

“Pacing and leading is simply this, the moment you think you’re connected, so you’ve gained rapport, you’ve had a connection and you’ve done that through the use of your body and through the use of your words, you then try to actually break the connection.” – Dan Crum · [13:10] 

 

Dan Crum:

Okay, so pacing and leading is simply this. The moment you think you’re connected, so you’ve gained rapport, you’ve had a connection and you’ve done that through the use of your body and through the use of your words, you then try to actually break the connection. So, the way you break the connection would be, if you and I are both sitting like this, and then I suddenly sit back like this and I put my arms over my thing like this. If I watch you, you will feel discomfort. You will feel discomfort at first because obviously I did something that makes you feel uncomfortable. It’s like, “That feels weird to me. Why did he just do that?”

 

Dan Crum:

But if I was connected to you, if I properly connected, you want that connection back. So you will start to shift. Even if you don’t do the hands part, you’ll notice the person … if you start to then shift back yourself like that, I would go almost like gotcha thing. Because I’d go, “You were connected to me and you felt the disconnect.” I created the disconnect. And the moment you felt the disconnect, you thought, “I want it back. I want connection back.” So you shift into a position that makes you feel it again like, “I feel connected again. That’s great.”

 

Dan Crum:

It’s almost like it’s subconscious. Nobody’s consciously thinking about this. The most common thing people ask me is always, “Well, wouldn’t people notice that I’m copying them?” Or wouldn’t they be like, “Stop copying me.” And no, unless you’re super crazy obvious and you’re doing down to fine point details. If you’re doing it broadly, you know what I mean?

 

Will Barron:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

 

Dan Crum:

And you’re not try to so quick on the draw to copy everything they do but you’re suddenly shifting like they shift and form that connection, they will become connected to you. They will experience that rapport. And then, by breaking the connection, what you’re actually doing is you’re seeing if they didn’t shift, if you didn’t shift let’s say within five or 10 seconds, I would then just come right back to where we were. You know what I mean? And then I would continue to mirror you until I felt I could test again.

 

“Emotion is created through motion. They actually say, another term I use is physiology creates feelings. So, you didn’t have to read the emotions of the person, but here’s the thing, by mirroring the physiology of the person you actually are sympathetic or empathetic. You feel like they feel because your emotion is created through the use of your body.” – Dan Crum · [15:39] 

 

Dan Crum:

Then I might test different. I might just lean forward like this and then I might see if you wait and then if you lean forward, I’m like, “Okay, good. We were connected. You wanted that connection back.” So, the second term is pacing and leading. So, now I’m leading you because before I was following you, I was mirroring and matching what you’re doing. But the moment I break the connection and you start to follow me, I now am influencing you. I’m setting the pace and I’m leading you and emotion, this is a Tony Robbins taught process. He says emotion is created through motion. They actually say, another term I use, is physiology creates feelings.

 

“People buy based on emotion and they justify with logic. So, if I can influence you to feel a certain way, then I have the most influence over you to make a buying decision, because I can figure out what’s going to be the best emotional state for you to be in to make the buying purchase.” – Dan Crum · [19:10] 

 

Dan Crum:

So, you didn’t have to read the emotions of the person, but here’s the thing, by mirroring the physiology of the person you actually are sympathetic or empathetic. You feel like they feel because your emotion is created through the use of your body. So the moment you change and start to lead their emotions, you are actually influencing them because you’re influencing the thing that they care about most, the way they feel, you’re influencing their emotions. What do they always say about sales? People buy based on emotion and they justify with logic. So, if I can influence you to feel a certain way, then I have the most influence over you to make a buying decision, because I can figure out what’s going to be the best emotional state for you to be in, to make the buying purchase.

 

Will Barron:

There’s a tonne of things that you said there Dan, one of which, which I think you said subtly but is really important for the audience, especially any older members of the audience who have been selling for 10, 20 years, because there was a tonne of really horrible sales training done in the ’80s, ’90s, early 2000s on mirroring, where it’s just copy what the person’s doing and they will buy from you. But this ability to then copy it subtly and then I guess … I’m saying this word, I feel like this I’ve read this somewhere, but you’re essentially pinging back and forth between you and the individual to test that you’re in that rapport state and then whether you can lead them or not and going back, if you don’t. I feel like that is a lot more subtle than what traditional sales training has tried to teach salespeople in the past with videos with men and women with weird suits or big shoulder pads, again in the ’80s and ’90s.

 

How to Fortify Rapport and Influence in B2B Sales · [17:25] 

 

Will Barron:

So, let’s carry on this process then. So, we sit down with a potential customer, we’ve set up the room, so there’s not a big, horrible desk in between us both. We’re sat next to each other, we can see each other’s full length of our bodies so that we can then subtly mirror them. We feel like we’re in rapport with them. We’re having a great conversation and we’re leaning back and forwards, we’re shifting around and they’re copying us. Are there any other deeper ways to build that level of rapport and influence, what’s the next step from there?

 

Dan Crum:

Well, I jumped in the middle, so in my sales process, I actually say step four, I use the word connect which is like building rapport, and step five I use the term influence, out of seven steps. So, I think I’d rather jump up to something that comes before connecting and influencing, which to me is, of my seven steps the most important step, which is step three. I call it fortify and I’ll explain that. If I explained that then the following steps will make more sense because I didn’t skip a bunch to get like, what comes next? What comes next won’t work well, if I didn’t tell you what comes before and let me start with this. What comes next after influence is step six and it is agree and agree just basically is what some people call the close.

 

“I always like to remind people of the movie where they say, “ABC, always be closing.” I say that if you use the CIA method, CIA, closing is automatic, you don’t have to close. Closing is an automatic process, you’re just following the CIA method steps.” – Dan Crum · [18:49] 

 

Dan Crum:

I always like to remind people of the movie where they say, “ABC, always be closing.” I say that if you use the CIA method, CIA, closing is automatic. You don’t have to close. Closing is an automatic process, you’re just following the CIA method steps. As you get to step six, agree, you literally just agree. Now, nothing is that simple. I’m not trying to make it like, “Oh, just lay up, it’s so easy.” But if you follow these steps the way I lay them out, then by the time you get to step six, there’s not a hard close. There’s not something you have to push to overcome a lot of objections. You’ve done things properly in the sequential order. So to me, to have CIA, closing is automatic, then you have to follow … really important you follow the other steps, but I’m going to jump to step three, fortify because to me, step three, fortify is the most important, let me tell you why.

 

“I think a common flaw that people have in sales is to think they can trick people into selling them.” – Dan Crum · [19:40] 

 

Dan Crum:

So, I think a common flaw that people have in sales is to think they can trick people into selling them. I’m going to give you a recent example. So, I was doing consulting for a solar company and they were having me review what the call centre would say to people if they responded to an ad. I was reading it and I was looking for it and I’m like, “They don’t say the word solar in here once.” I was having a conversation with the owner and I said, “Why don’t you say this is solar?” It turns out, I think they’re afraid of solar because I think they think, “If they knew we were selling solar, they may object right away,” meaning they won’t even take an appointment.

 

“If you’re going to sell anything, I think you need to be proud of what you sell and you need to bring what you sell to the forefront and not be afraid to say you’re a salesman.” – Dan Crum · [20:32] 

 

Dan Crum:

So, that brings me back to what I think is the most important thing is, for you, if you’re going to sell anything, I think you need to be proud of what you sell and you need to bring what you sell to the forefront and not be afraid to say you’re a salesman, like the name of your podcast. You can’t be afraid to say you’re a salesman. We always try to disguise all these terms, like I’m an account executive, I’m a consultant, I’m a this. It’s like, no, you’re in sales, and your job is-

 

Will Barron:

And nobody would believe you anyway, right, Dan? No matter what your nonsense title is-

 

Dan Crum:

Exactly, you try to disguise it.

 

Will Barron:

… we know exactly what’s going on.

 

Dan Crum:

Right, we’re disguising it. We’re hiding it. We’re like, “I can’t say it yet. If I say too early, I’m going to ruin it. It’s not going to work out.” So again, the titles, we try to disguise it with our titles. We try to disguise it with our marketing. We try to disguise it with even that case, the words that they’re using in the call centre, so that you’ll take an appointment, not exactly realising what the appointment’s going to be about or what they’re going to sell you. They just think, “I’m going to save money on my electric bill, yes. How?” “You’ll learn later.”

 

“In step three, fortify, I think the overarching principle is one, that you are proud of what you sell. If not, get out of selling that, or maybe get out of sales altogether” – Dan Crum · [21:37] 

 

Dan Crum:

So in step three, fortify, I think the overarching principle is one, that you are proud of what you sell. If not, get out of selling that, or maybe get out of sales altogether. But if you’re going to sell something, you should believe in it and you should be like, “I’m so proud that I sell that and that I’m a salesperson for that, and I believe in my product, service, whatever I sell.”

 

How to Qualify a Lead and Schedule a Phone Call · [21:59] 

 

Dan Crum:

So, way we start step three, fortify, is with a qualifying phone call, or you could say with a qualifying slash scheduling phone call. Basically, what I don’t teach in my system is I do not teach advertising and I do not teach marketing and I do not teach lead generation. So, I’m jumping right in at the point where there’s a lead. We don’t know if this lead’s qualified yet, but there’s a lead. It’s responded to something and now it’s sitting here in front of you and you might have a name and a phone number.

 

Dan Crum:

So, now you’ve gone through the first parts of the process and you’re at step three, fortify. So, now I’m giving you a call and I’m like, “I’m calling you Will … ” and what I’m trying to do is find out one, are we a match? For what you want and for what I sell, are we a match and is this going to make sense?

 

Dan Crum:

The outcome of this call is one thing, that we schedule the next step and the next step is going to be, if we’re allowed to, an in-person meeting, or if it’s has to be over Skype, or Zoom, or anything like this. We’re scheduling the presentation, the sales process is going to happen after this, if there’s a match and we’re qualified for it.

 

Dan Crum:

So, the way that I support this principle is by telling you one, very upfront, this is what we sell, like, “I’m a sales person. I sell this.” And the outcome of this call is exactly what I just said, the outcome of this call is to see if, whatever term you want to use, you’re qualified or a match, or if this makes sense for you to continue along with this process.

 

Dan Crum:

The next step of the process will be, I’m going to present to you. I’m literally going to give you a sales presentation and then when I tell you what’s going to happen, if we get there, I’m going to tell you at the sales presentation, “Let me tell you what’s going to happen.” I include in that, I literally set an agenda, I say, “We’re going to do this and then this, and then this, and then this, and when we get here … ” I use better terms in this, but I basically say, “This is where I sell you. This is where if this makes sense, you’re going to buy what it is I sell.”

 

Dan Crum:

Again, I’m not hiding that. I’m not like, “I’m just coming to present to you.” I’m literally going through and I’m saying, “So, I’m going to show you this and we’re going to talk about this, and we’re going to do this, and we’re going to do this, and this is the part where you would buy.”

 

Dan Crum:

What this reveals really early in the process is you’re going to object now, because I’m not hiding anything from you. You object now to something, “I wouldn’t be ready to buy when you present to me.” “Okay.” You know what I mean?

 

Will Barron:

Yeah.

 

Dan Crum:

And then you can reveal why you wouldn’t be ready to buy. What does that enable me to do? It enables me to … I use the term fortify. I’m fortifying my position, I’m strengthening my position so by the time I get to step six, agree, you’re going to agree. You’re going to go, “You are so upfront with me and you told me exactly what’s going to happen, and that happened. And you told me at this point you were going to try to sell to me and I’m ready. I’m ready for you to try to sell it to me.”

 

Dan Crum:

So jumping a little bit ahead, but if I go through this agenda with you, and I tell you what’s going to happen, I tell you at this part we’re going to sell, what I follow that up, the continuation of fortify and this scheduling phone call is, as soon as we’re completing our phone call, we’ve now scheduled the presentation meeting, I’m going to say to you, “Well, just to make sure, is this your cell phone number?” “Yes, it is.” “Okay, great. I’m going to start a text exchange between us so we can quickly communicate if something has to change or whatever else.” So we immediately do that.

 

Dan Crum:

I also say, I get your email, “Is this your email?” “Yes.” “Okay. Well, I’m going to send you an email and in that email is going to be the same agenda we just reviewed. And in that agenda, it’s going to talk about that step where I try to sell you.” Again, it’s going to remind you again, this is the part where I’m going to try and sell you. Then also what I include in it, I say, “And what I also put in the email is … “whatever document you use, agreement you use, if you call it a contract, doesn’t matter, whatever you’re going to use that enables them to take step forward, so they could review terms and conditions. They can review the broad strokes of the stuff, so they can’t ever use the objection of, “I need time to review this thing.”

 

Dan Crum:

No, I’m going to send that to you. That’s going to be in the email that I’m going to send. So you have a chance to review in advance, and I can answer any questions. You can send me a question by text, by email and let me know, so we’re ready by the time we’re there. So, when we get to this part, you know what I mean? You’re ready to buy. Now, I set criteria, and you’ve probably heard this criteria before in sales, but I set criteria. If you’re going to buy, if, because I think this should be true of everyone making a purchasing decision. If you like me Will, if you like my company, and if you like our product, service, process, system, whatever we have. So, if you like all that, then I’m going to ask you to take the next step with us, which would be this agreement, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, whatever.

 

Dan Crum:

You know what I mean? That’s fair, right? And you, of course, “Yeah, of course.” If I liked you and I liked your company and I liked your process, service, product, whatever you sell, then yes, that would make sense that I would take that next step with you. And if you’re not going to be ready, you’re going to tell me, “No, Dan, I would not be ready.” “Oh, okay.” And then you’re going to say, “Here’s why I would not be ready.” And then what can I do? I can fortify my position even better to say, “Oh, okay, you need so-and-so to be there? Great. Let’s schedule when so-and-so could be there.” “No, I would need to … ” Whatever. You’re going to give me criteria that tells me, in order for me to get here and actually say yes and buy, the following needs to be true.

 

Dan Crum:

But I didn’t hide it from you. I was upfront. I’m going to do this, this and this and then I’m going to offer you to take the next step, buy. But to be fair, you’re only going to buy if you like me, you like our company, you like our process. And then I’m going to review that in an email to you that says, “Here are the steps. And when we get here, I’m going to try to sell you. And here’s the agreement that I’m going to ask you to authorise when we get here.” And then I’m going to send you a text and I’m going to say, “Did you get the email?” Even though I probably know you got it. “Did you get the email? Please make sure you have a chance to review everything before we meet.”

 

Dan Crum:

The day of I’m going to text you in the morning and I’m going to say, “Hey, just confirming our meeting today for [1:00] PM.” “Yep.” “Just want to make sure you had a chance to open that email I sent you and review the document,” review whatever. “Yep.” And if not, it’s like, “Yeah, please, if you could, make sure you do that before we meet.” I am doing everything I can to fortify my position so by the time we get to step six, agree, hopefully you like me and you like my company and you like our products, services and process, and you’re like, “Yeah, I’m ready to take the next step forward. You couldn’t have been more up front with me exactly how this works.”

 

Will Barron:

We do something similar in our training but also when we are selling our team plans. Individuals who buy our training just sign up on that, it’s not an issue, but if you’ve got team of more than five people, I’ll jump on the phone with you, or one of our team will jump on the phone with you. I always, so perhaps you can critique some of this Dan and tell me where I could improve it, but I always jump on the phone and the first thing up my mouth after, “Hello, how are you?” The pleasantries, is I say this verbatim, “This is the way these calls usually go.” And then I’ll explain what I want to achieve on the call, and then the end of this kind of a bit is, “If it’s a good fit for us both, then we can move forward with this.” Then I just get the confirmation from them by saying, “Does that make sense?” Or, “Is that fair with you?”

 

Will Barron:

And sometimes I get exactly what you’re describing, they’ll throw out an objection of, “Oh, we’re not ready to buy today.” And I’ll say, “Fine, blah, blah, blah, blah.” I’ll repeat that process again. I deal with the objection and say, “The way that these calls usually go is … ” and then I go back round and get that confirmation. Sometimes, it depends on the personality of the person that you’re dealing with, if they think they’re … and they might be a big cheese but if they think they’re a big cheese, or if they think that you should be as a sales person, sucking up to them, I have to go through this process four or five times until they go, “Okay.”

 

Will and Dan Explain Why Salespeople Should Not Beat Around the Bush in Sales Conversation · [29:40] 

 

Will Barron:

And then when they say, okay, the conversation goes way smoother. So, I like this idea of how you’re describing it, of fortifying what you’re trying to achieve here. But if I don’t go through this loop, if I forget to go through the loop, or if I don’t do it effectively enough, I find that people then assume, the buyers assume, the authority in the conversation, my ability to influence them one way or another, because clearly some brands are not a good fit to work with us, absolutely disappears. So it was just interesting to me that this one, two sentences, at the beginning of a conversation makes massive difference for me and seemingly it’s similar to what you’re doing, right?

 

Dan Crum:

Yes, absolutely, and I love that you’re doing it. I think everybody should do this. Even if we never interact in the future, this to me is … I’m telling you, I think that’s the most powerful of the steps for people to understand is, if you just one, except the fact that it’s like, “Dude, I am a salesperson.” And not just accept and embrace the fact, isn’t it great that I’m a salesperson, isn’t that great? If you sell for something you love and you feel good about, then that alone makes you happier and better. And then you can be upfront with the people because there’s nothing better. My first book was called, Is He Lying To You?

 

“There’s nothing better than somebody not beating around the bush and being straightforward and authentic and real and genuine in doing all this stuff. So, for you to be able to go, “Listen, I’m going to ask you to buy what I sell.” Because that’s the reason we’re meeting, right?” – Dan Crum · [31:04] 

 

Dan Crum:

I often say to people, and I tell them that story, and I say, “Because I’m a expert at reading behaviour, knowing someone’s lying.” And I said, “Let me make you a promise. I’m always going to tell you the truth even if it’s not in my best interest.” There’s nothing better than somebody not beating around the bush and being straightforward and authentic and real and genuine in doing all this stuff. So, for you to be able to go, “Listen, I’m going to ask you to buy what I sell.” Because that’s the reason we’re meeting, right?

 

Will Barron:

It seems so crazy that you’ve got to explain this, right? It’s mental.

 

Dan Crum:

Yes, it is. And you watch, I mean, if you critique, I’m sure you’ve critiqued a lot of sales processes, but you listen to people get to that part. They haven’t told the people they’re going to get to that part, but everyone knows. It’s like the elephant in the room. Like, “I’m I’m going to get to a part where I’m going to ask you to go forward but I’m afraid to tell you that I’m going to get to that part.” But you know I’m going to get to that part, so by the time I get there, I’m rushing and I’m going really fast. And I’m talking really excitedly, and I’m trying to get through as quick as I can because I’m so afraid you might say no, right?

 

Will Barron:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

 

Dan Crum:

So, if we just do this well in the beginning, it’s like, this is early stages. I’m having a qualifying call or a scheduling call with you and I’m doing it. Then I’m fortifying you further, an email, a text message, a text message again the day of, and then how do I connect better? Or build a rapport with you when I come into your home or you come to office or wherever it is? I honour what exactly what I said. So, then I say, “Will, we can keep this mainly informal, but it just want to review with you the agenda or the steps. We’re going to try to make sure we hit on all these steps here, we’re going to follow this system, as best we can.”

 

How to Use Embedded Commands to Dramatically Increase Sales · [32:45] 

 

Dan Crum:

It’s the same thing, for the third time at least this, this, this, this, and then I’m going to say again, “And when we get here, I’m going to ask you to take a step forward with us, which would be this agreement,” or however, it works. Obviously understand, you have to like me and you have to like our company, like our process. By the way, all of these things, there’s a term in NLP called embedded commands. When I keep saying this over and over, “If you like me, you like our company, you like our … ” I’m telling you to like me, that’s very commanding phrases.

 

Dan Crum:

The subconscious mind is good at following commands, so as I keep repeating myself, “Obviously I’m going to ask you to move forward with us, take a step forward, to buy what I sell,” whatever, however you say this, but I’m saying it all in an assumptive way. You talked about it earlier, in a commanding way, where I’m saying, “If you like me, you like our company, you like our product, process, service.” Then your brain can’t help to look for ways you like it.

 

“This is what I really believe, all negative emotions come from expectations not being met.” – Dan Crum · [33:35] 

 

Dan Crum:

And then you couldn’t be happier that the person was so upfront and you couldn’t be happier that you’re in the office or the house or wherever you are, and that the person is going, “They’re doing exactly what they said they’re going to do.” You know what I mean? This is what I really believe, all negative emotions come from expectations not being met. How many times have we been disappointed? Like, “I thought this was something totally different. I’m so mad or disappointed. I didn’t know this work this way.” So, now when I’m like, “This works this way.” And then I show you it works this way. And I’m like, “Yeah, we did that and we did that.” You’re checking boxes like, “Ah, I can trust this guy. I believe in he’s telling me the truth. That’s exactly how he said it’s going to go.” It just all helps this process move really smoothly.

 

What Percentage of Sales are Lost Because Salespeople Don’t Believe in Themselves or Whatever it is They’re Selling? · [34:09] 

 

Will Barron:

Dan, I’ve got two questions to wrap up the show, mate. One, I know there’s no number on this, but give us a gist here, what percentage of sales are lost because a sales person doesn’t believe in themselves that they’re capable of selling? Doesn’t speak in a way that commands authority and their confidence is lacking. What percentage of sales are lost on things that we can control versus things that we can’t?

 

Dan Crum:

So, I am a huge believer. I’m the right person to be asking this question to, because I’m on the phone every day as also a coach. So, I learned coaching from Tony Robbins and I’m constantly coaching people and I’m doing consulting for sales, but here’s … This is interesting side thing of what I do. I coach athletes, professional athletes in all the major sports. I literally had three calls yesterday with professional athletes. We believe, I believe and what I preach constantly, and what we’re constantly talking about, is that. The name of that is called elite mental game.

 

“The elite mental game. I believe the difference maker, especially once you get to the top level, it’s not mechanics, it’s not capability, it’s not strategy, it’s mindset. So mindset to me, you can’t quantify it, but to me, it’s 90%. It’s so big. You can’t have a great mindset and make up for poor skills, or poor strategy, or not following a system. You can’t do that. But if you have a system and you have a process and you put two people head-to-head, the person with a better mindset is going to win out every time.” – Dan Crum · [35:03] 

 

Dan Crum:

I believe the difference maker, especially once you get to the top level, it is not mechanics. It’s not capability, it’s not strategy, it’s mindset. So mindset to me, you can’t quantify it, but to me it’s like 90%, it’s 90%. It’s so big. You can’t have a great mindset and make up for poor skills, or poor strategy, or not following a system. You can’t do that. But if you have a system and you have a process and you put two people head-to-head, the person with a better mindset’s going to win out every time.

 

Dan Crum:

In fact, yesterday I had a conversation with someone who said these exact words, they’re a pitcher in major league baseball. They said to me, “You’re so right. In fact, I see guys that are not as good a pitchers as me.” This is a new client I have. “But they think they’re better than me, therefore they perform better than me.” So, a lot of times it’s more how you think you are, and how you think things will go and what your mindset is, will have a greater impact than if you’re just resting on your capabilities or your talent.

 

Will Barron:

Got it, that makes total sense. And when we talk about talent, that has been relatively well studied. We do know that talent isn’t necessarily, unless you’re seven foot two and you’re playing basketball, there’s a element of natural born talent that goes along with that, but a lot of talent is just hours in the game and hours going through the same processes and mindset and everything else that goes along with it. I’ve got one final question for you, Dan. I assume you’ve seen the film Inception, right?

 

Dan Crum:

Yes.

 

Inception Selling and Hypnosis in B2B Sales · [36:33] 

 

Will Barron:

So this is a weird question, but I want to know the answer to it. If you could somehow convince a potential customer to be hypnotised midway through the sales process, do you think it’s possible to increase your chances of doing a deal with them and increasing your levels of influence via some kind of process of inception? Not that a buyer would ever agree to this, but if it did happen, would that be possible?

 

Dan Crum:

I have a couple answers. One would say that, I think we’re all walking through life in kind of a hypnosis anyway. We’re following such programmed patterns and ways of thinking. So, a lot of being assumptive and a lot of giving commanding phrases is a form of hypnosis, where we’re so used to following commands, we’re so used to fulfilling what people tell us is going to happen, that in many senses, you’re doing that. The difference though, is in traditional hypnosis, we’re entering a brainwave state and we’re deeply relaxed and usually, most of the time, our eyes are closed.

 

Dan Crum:

But going back to your question, could you do it? Yes, absolutely, you could. People have said this is impossible, but I believe it’s possible. In fact, there’s a book about Charles Manson and they talk about how they used LSD studies along with hypnosis to get people to become killers and do all sorts of crazy things. So, I believe you could almost have anybody do anything but not necessarily in session one or in the moment. But if somebody is open to it and you can spend time with them, you can condition and programme them to do almost anything.

 

Dan Crum:

In sales though, and I know you say this is just a good question, but my last step is called secure and I believe … It’s just basically the post-sale. So, while I think it’s possible, you could get somebody to make a buying decision using hypnosis or hypnosis-like tactics, you wouldn’t be following what I believe is the best thing, which is to secure the sale, which is the post-sale. Because you don’t want a one-off. You want a lifetime client, you know what I mean? You want somebody who’s going to make referrals, give testimonials, be a repeat client, all that sort of stuff. It will eventually wear off, so to me, I would never be interested in a one hit wonder. I’d be interested in something that’s sustainable long-term and I think that’s only based on the principles that are sound.

 

Parting Thoughts: The CIA Method in Sales · [38:58] 

 

Will Barron:

Yep, makes total sense. I honestly don’t know how most people’s morals could hold up over the decades of a sales career if they were doing otherwise. So I appreciate that, Dan. With that mate, tell us a little bit more about, I know you’ve got some online training that covers this, and also the book that’s coming out. Is it November it’s coming out?

 

Dan Crum:

Yes. So both have the same title, it’s CIA Method. If you check it out, it’s at the same location, so CIA method.com. Just type it in directly and it will go to the website. The book is on there if you want to pre-order it, it comes out in November, like you said. There’s a free training, it’s just a seven day, it’s very short training. It’s probably five or 10 minutes a day of just to reveal to you what are these seven steps. You’ve heard a lot of them today, and then if you’re interested, obviously you can take the next step, which would be, I’m going to offer you the sales training.

 

Dan Crum:

Then other than that, you can go to … My regular website’s, Dan Crum, D-A-N C-R-U-M, dancrumb.com. You can just learn about me and my life and my family and all that kind of stuff and just see the various fun things that I do.

 

Will Barron:

We’ll wrap up with this Dan, because in hindsight, I wish I would have known … Clearly we don’t know what we’re going to talk about in the show, it’s a conversation. It would have been absolutely fascinating for you to have showed the leading, pacing and mirroring at the end of the show, so then we could have looked back and seen, even subconsciously, I’m sure you were doing it to me even without … just trying to build a bit rapport in our conversation. So, it would have been absolutely fascinating to look back and to seen that happened. So, maybe if I could forget about it somehow, or if you could hypnotise me and take it out of my brain, we could do that on another episode.

 

Will Barron:

But with that Dan, mate, I appreciate your time. Appreciate your insight to this. Really, I love anything to do with this. I think it’s absolutely fascinating and I want to thank you again for your time and insights and sharing it with us on The Salesman Podcast.

 

Dan Crum:

Absolutely, thanks for having me.

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