The book, “The Natural Laws Of Selling: The Essential Truths” had its humble beginnings as a single idea: to inspire others to reach their full potential.
But, as is often the case, there is a back-story.
I was hired as a “business consultant” as a last-ditch attempt to rescue a business-to-business marketing company whose sales were severely challenged In fact, it was worse than that. They were not just running on fumes, they were running on the distant memory of what fumes used to smell like.
I was hired to do an analysis of the company and sort out what needed to be done to save the company. Not a particularly difficult task really: experienced and willing staff were underutilized, and there were zero sales.
But as any experienced business person knows, revenue from sales is a consequence of less visible factors leading up to a sale, I knew the company had life-threatening, internal challenges, which, unless acknowledged and addressed immediately could and would stop all external efforts (i.e. sales).
So, partly because I was the only one willing to take on a task of this magnitude and I was available and affordable, I became “The Hail-Mary Pass” that was supposed to breath life into the company and keep the ship from going down with all flags struck. I took the job with the agreement I would be paid at the end of each month, contingent upon the company generating a certain targeted amount. And I would be paid nothing if income targets were not met.
After interviewing all management and staff personnel, it was obvious they had other ideas, excuses, justifications and explanations as to what was causing the slump, such as: the general economic slow-down, no mission statement, wrong branding, stiffer competition, prices too high, slow delivery, not enough credit, technological changes, poor morale, wrong location for the business, no advertising, organizational mismanagement, disgruntled staff and clients, and other far sillier (and wrong) reasons why the company was failing. I also swiftly got the reputation as the “chainsaw consultant” because every Friday for a while, some people got fired.
The first couple of weeks were dedicated to getting them back to doing what had worked previously and knocking off all new bright ideas for instant get-rich-quick schemes. Anything or anyone that didn’t contribute to the immediate survival of the company was dismissed. No more staff parties and long lunches. Salesmen with zero or low sales for the past two-month were summarily fired. All redundant staff was dismissed. The attitude was one I learned in the U.S. Navy, ”Ship up or ship out!”
And, as orderliness and direction began to show up, we began to gain some traction. Personnel who were left had higher morale, largely because of not having to carry all the dead weight of those who were not doing their job and in fact, creating more work for others. At the end of the first month, the income was high enough to pay my fee and I agreed to continue for the next several months with the same agreement. (Insufficient company income = no pay for me).
Next I started working with what sales force we had left (two people) getting them back in the game and selling. I also convinced the CEO that she needed to do a videotape of her talking about the company.
This turned out to be a passionate, compelling talk about her belief in how her company added value not only to clients but also to her employees. It turned out to be the best orientation for new staff that we ever used. It also ended up being an inspiring testimonial for our soon to be hired new sales force.
With the CEO on the job doing actual sales and the other two salesmen starting to generate income, we were keeping our head above water for now. But this was only a stop-gap, emergency patch-up to stop the bleeding until something effective could be done.
The company needed a full reorganization to avoid going down the rabbit hole again. But I couldn’t close the doors and spend two weeks working on just that. I had to generate income now! and at the same time keep the ship afloat. And that’s what I did. We hired new (but experienced) salesman and I began the process of training him and the other two.
I starting with an “mini training session” where I found out what they could do. Then I bot them do what they should have been doing – and to do nothing else! They were salesmen, their job was to sell services and close deals. Period.
Their job was to contact and communicate with (not to) the public, discover how what we were doing could help them, bring them to understand how this would be a benefit to them by helping them achieve their own purposes, close the deal and collect the money. Anything else was a waste of time if it didn’t forward that purpose.
I also began, at that time, writing an article on some aspect of the selling procedure to clarify their purposes, simplify the process, intensify their focus on selling, reduce costs by closing more deals in less time, and deliver what was promised.
These articles became part of a journal which contained every article I wrote on the subject over the ten years I worked with that company. Some of the article were published broadly in Entrepreneur Magazine and in many online magazines. The material contained in the articles were instantly popular with salesmen and women for one reason: It worked!
After a could years, the sales force expanded throughout the U.S., Europe, and China and the company became hugely successful. Every veteran salesman was enjoying a six-figure income with less effort and greater results; and the C.E.O. was taking home seven-figures within five years.
That was the beginning of what eventually became, “The Natural Laws of Selling” – now available on Amazon.com in eBook or soft cover to inspire you to reach your full potential.
(c) 2015, all rights reserved