Steve Richard is the Chief-Evangelist and Co-Founder of ExecVision, a conversation intelligence platform built to drive change in human behavior. We talk about the sales management code, practical prospecting strategies, and the effectiveness of cold calling in today’s sales environment.
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Be a Sales Diagnostician with Steve Richard
Our guest is Steve Richard, the co-founder and chief evangelist of ExecVision, a SaaS platform that leverages pattern recognition and human intelligence to allow organizations and develop their sales teams and drive behavior change to increase revenue. Welcome to the show, Steve.
Steve, you’re hired for a sales job, done.
I’m not for hire, but thanks for the offer. I’ll consider it. So listen, I’m not for hire because I’m an entrepreneur like you are. And I’m always very curious about these journeys and what took you to be a co-founder and chief evangelist of a SaaS company. You had another business, at least one other business before. So tell us a little bit about your journey.
Yeah, real short story here. Like many people who graduate college, I didn’t know I want to go into sales. Sales found me. I didn’t find sales. All of my classmates were getting jobs in investment banking in New York. I was undergraduate Georgetown Business School, so not an MBA undergrad. And I had 60,000 in school loans, our family business in septic tanks, literally Richard’s Septic Systems, you can look it up in Connecticut. So I didn’t wanna go work for Uncle Jim in the septic business.
So I got a job in sales, went five for five in sales interviews when I went O for 22 for investment banking. This to me was God’s way of saying go over here and I, and I initially was failing and then I came to love it. I really, I did. I worked for corporate executive board. That’s where I met my business partner and I was fortunate to work with all these incredible salespeople that I was able to learn from when I was failing, do more of what they were doing, less of what I was doing, test and measure, test and measure.
We’ll come back to that theme later on. From there, my business partner looked at me and said, you know, you know, we’re okay at selling, but what we’re really good at is getting the meetings. So we founded this outsourced appointment setting business called Voresight and Voresight we recently sold. So we sold it in May, 2021, 16 years later. And along the way of building our, our company built a sales training company because the clients were saying, what are you guys doing differently over there? Like you guys are doing better than our team. She teaches your secrets.
But what happened is when I was doing all the sales training, I was working with hundreds of clients in the field, you know, flying all over. I’d visit them later, six months later, and sometimes they implemented what they learned and they’d really mastered it and they had really significant breakthrough performance, double, triple, pipeline, like versus before on a per rep basis. And then sometimes I’d go visit them maybe two thirds of the time and they hadn’t changed a darn thing.
They went back to all their old bad habits and they didn’t implement any of what they learned. All their training books were collecting dust on the shelf. So if I look at the difference, it was all about consistency and accountability and management, and they also used call recordings. So the people who got the changes, they were listening to call recordings and using that as a way to shift the performance curve, close those performance gaps that exist, and actually get people to change behavior.
So they mastered the new way of doing it and they stopped the old habit. So that was the aha light bulb moment. We became a, my appointment setting business became a customer of this technology called at the time, Team Visibility. They were messing it all up. We bought the company. That’s how we got into tech. We fixed it all up. And now, you know, we’ve got 120 customers and very, very happy customers.
That’s awesome. So, so that’s the company Exec Vision.
Exec Vision. Is that what I do every day, that’s right.
Yes, so my question, my next question is about what the title of the podcast is, also Management Blueprints. I’m always looking for frameworks that people use to build companies and to shortcut their way to success. So do you have a framework that you got inspired by, implemented it, that maybe other people can go to as well? Maybe you read the book or implemented something that they’re taught to you?
Great question. So, so I’m a big frameworks guy too, because it just helps us with the mnemonics and the reminders. And I’ll give you two. The first one is from cracking the sales management code, but it’s really a framework. Many, many people have heard of OKRs, objectives and key results. It’s a pretty popular in Silicon Valley. I think Google either invented it or adopted it or something, but cracking the sales management code was developed by Michelle Vazana and Jason Jordan.
Jason Jordan’s a professor at UVA, so it’s kind of an East Coast thing. And it is all about results, objectives, and activities. So they call it the ROA framework, results, objectives, activities. They did this analysis of all of these sales KPIs, KPIs that sales leaders do. And it’s funny because if you go into like a call center, they have very similar KPIs from place to place. If you go into a place like a finance function, very similar KPIs from place to place. If you go to sales, not a lot of standardization. It’s all over the map. So they were trying to solve for that.
A result is really a lagging indicator. It tells you what happened yesterday. I can’t wave a magic wand and get more sales. Don’t we wish we could. It just doesn’t work. An activity on the other end of the spectrum, an activity is something we can directly control. So I can directly control how many phone calls I make, how many emails I send, how many prospects I connect with on LinkedIn, the fact that I follow my customers on LinkedIn so then when they change companies, I’m notified that they’ve changed companies.
I can control those things directly. And then objectives are kind of in the middle. They’re like, I can kind of control them, but I kind of can’t. So here’s a perfect example from like an outbound sales perspective that everyone understands. If you’re cold calling and prospecting, we can talk about that later, right? You got to make phone calls. That’s the raw activity. Okay. Now, is it just a relationship of if I just make more calls, I’m going to get more people on the phone? Not necessarily. If I keep calling the same people over and over again, that don’t answer the phone, I can call them 10,000 times and never get anybody on the phone.
So another activity that most people don’t think about is getting fresh contacts, identifying fresh prospects. Don’t, you know, definition of insanity, same thing over and over, getting a different result. You’re banging your head against the wall. Instead, go get fresh contacts, dial them. That’s an activity. The objective of that is to have a conversation with them, an unscheduled, unexpected, cold conversation, and have a dialogue, a back and forth, Those are objectives. But what’s the reason for scheduling the meeting? The result you’re driving towards is a completed appointment with an opportunity in your pipeline. That’s the result for the sales rep that just cold calls, like a sales development rep or a BDR, that type of a role. ROA, results, objectives, activities, control what we can control. That’s the first big framework.Results are lagging indicators, objectives are in the middle, and activities are directly controllable. Click To Tweet
Shouldn’t be the other way around, shouldn’t be the our framework, because it starts with the activities objectives and results.
I don’t think it has the same ring but it probably should be exactly right yeah it would be it would have been more convenient for them if it was, if it was over or something like that oh are but yes, it’s three. Three’s kind of stick in people’s brains. Yes. And I’ll be working with a management team, a sales leadership team. A lot of our customers have big sales. They might have a 100 person, 200 person sales organization in which case they’re gonna have like 10 to 20 managers. Yes.
And we go and we start saying, let’s be diagnosticians. Don’t think about sales metrics as like beating people over the head with their metrics. You’re not flogging people and whipping people with their metrics. Unfortunately, that’s what a lot of sales leaders do. Instead, be an auto mechanic. If there’s a rep that’s not performing, why? Dig under the hood, do a series of diagnostics. So be a diagnostician, look at the metrics and the ratio. Is the ratio of dial to conversation healthy? Fine, green light. If it’s not, red flag, we got to dig deeper. Why? Maybe they don’t have direct lines. Maybe they’re calling at the wrong times.Be diagnosticians, not just metrics enforcers. Click To Tweet
Is the ratio of conversations to appointments scheduled healthy? If it is, green light. If it’s not, red flag. Maybe they don’t know what the hell they’re saying on the phone. They don’t know the messaging. They don’t know how to ask the right questions. They’re not calling the right personas in the first place. So the recommendations that you’re going to make as a sales leader, how are you going to get that salesperson to recognize their performance gaps and change, is going to depend on their ability to interpret the metrics in the ROA framework.
Ok. So basically, you need activities that drive objectives. You can measure and you can drive the activity to make sure that you do the activity as long as it’s the right one. You’re striving for an objective, I don’t know, 50 calls a day, and then, or maybe 50, five conversations, whatever it is.
50 calls, resulting five conversations. And the result is that you want to convert at least one of them into a customer.
One of them into a scheduled meeting.
Scheduled meeting, and then the meeting. And that would turn into a customer.
That’s right. If you do something on the phone. And by the way, it doesn’t have to be calls. I just use that example because people understand it, but I’ll give you another one in action. You know, a lot of our customers will, the first time they actually talk to the prospect is on a scheduled call. It’s expected it’s on Zoom or Teams, but leading up to it, they’ll use social selling. So the activity for them might be sending connection requests on LinkedIn.
So step one is sending connection requests. And they know that 40% of those connection requests are accepted. By the way, that’s a little hack. If you’re going to send a connection request as a sales rep or as the founder of the company. Always have the sales rep logged in as you as the founder of the company because founders will get more accepted connections. You’re viewed as being more trustworthy. So you get accepted connections. Why do you get accepted connections? Because then you can send a message.
Now, the next move you want to do is maybe you send content or you send an offer as a direct message to try to get the appointment and then move that to Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Google Meet, one of the online, or maybe you’re still meeting in person, which is hunky-dory as well. But you see, there you go. There’s the activity, objectives, results, same framework, totally different social selling versus calling.
I love it. So, let’s dive into it in a minute. Just want to wrap this up. So this is kind of the OKRs approach for sales. OKRs is objectives and key results. You add activity at the front end. So that’s what you can really measure. And then you’ve got your sales OKR system.
To be fair, I don’t think, you know, I know Michelle and Jason, the authors of the book, Cracking the Sales Management Code, I don’t think they were looking at OKRs or modeled it off of that at all. I was just drawing a comparison there.
So just, I want to make sure, I red flag that. But yeah, it is a great book, Cracking the Sales Management Code. You’ll pick it up after about a third of the book. You really don’t have to read it all the way through. I mean, and then when you actually apply it day in and day out, it starts to make sense. Because the reality is most sales leaders, what do they do? They manage the pipeline and then they manage the closed deals. Well, that’s all hunky-dory, but that’s all telling you what happened yesterday.
To get to that point, a lot of things needed to happen to get to that point. So if you miss your revenue number and you’re looking at it retroactively, all they say is we didn’t have enough pipeline. Well, again, that’s fine, you didn’t have enough pipeline, but why? What could you do differently in the future moving forward so you do have enough pipeline? And that’s where metrics like identifying new contacts and adding those new contacts to your CRM. Steve is so important.
And a lot of companies don’t think like that. You know what I mean? They don’t actually measure that. They don’t make it part of their mantra that every day you’re gonna find five new contacts with direct lines and email addresses and cell phone numbers and you’re gonna put them in your CRM. But that’s the lifeblood of new business generation. You know what I mean? Oh, by the way, it’s also lifeblood. If you’ve got a big customer and you only work with one business unit over here and you’re trying to expand that relationship and upsell and cross sell, guess what?
You need to generate more relationships with more people that you don’t know in different business units, which means you still need to be adding. So our customer success team is also tasked with creating new contacts in the CRM, people that we don’t know up until this point at existing customers. So that’s the kind of like, you know, I love that book because it got me thinking about things like that in a different way.Expanding relationships with existing customers requires generating more relationships with different business units. Click To Tweet
You have to think about where your next meal is coming from, right? And then the one after that. So you have to feed the hopper, even if you’re not even gonna call these people, but you have to feed the process so that you will have people to call. That’s a really important lesson. I don’t think that’s obvious to most people.
And actually, Steve, something to add on that too, for the marketers out there, because I know a lot of the founders are more marketing minded. I call it outbound in. So what happens a lot of times is you’ll have a sales rep that finds a new contact and they pursue them for an appointment. They don’t get the meeting, but then six months later, that same prospect converts as a lead on the website because they’ve been getting the marketing information along the way. So that doesn’t happen unless you do the contact. So I call that outbound to drive inbound.
Got it. Okay. So, so let’s switch gears here a little bit and talk about this whole topic of cold calling them and for years I’ve been hearing that cold calling is dead. And in fact, the only people that called me these days are robots, sales robots for the most part. And, you know, I tend not to pick things up if I hear a gap between I pick up and they talk I know that it’s kind of a scheduling system that they use and they don’t know me and I just hang up. So how does that even work? Does even quote calling work in the 2020s?
Let’s talk about that for a second. So first of all, my experience and expertise is more around B2B, but if you’re doing B2C and it’s a considered purchase, if it’s an expensive thing, I think that the same rules apply. If your intent is to do B2C for very low end transactional sort of stuff, then I would probably agree it’s dead. You know what I mean? And in the way that you can generate leads on the internet is just too inexpensive, your cost of lead generated. So don’t think that I’m one of these myopic people that’s just like, I’m only going to talk about cold calling because it’s not the case.
In many cases, cold calling is not appropriate. It depends on what you sell and who you sell to. There are certain marketplaces and certain types of executives in B2B that they just don’t answer their phone. So you can call all you want. Marketers, in particular social media marketers, content marketers, are notorious for this, Steve. They just don’t answer their phone. So it’s like use a fishing metaphor. You know, if you’re going to go fishing, you have to go to where the fish are. There’s freshwater fish in lakes and streams and ponds, and then there are saltwater fish in the ocean.Different marketplaces and executives require specific approaches, like using the right lure for a particular type of fish. Click To Tweet
And then you have to go to the right place within that. In the ocean, 95% of the ocean, or like 99%, has no fish. You got to go to the fishing banks, the very specific places where fish congregate. And then you have to have the right lure, and you have to have the right approach to be able to catch that particular type of fish. So if you’re going after, you know, VPs of social media at big B2C brands, we’ve done a lot of experiments with my old outsourcing business that we sold Vorsight. Cold calling your way into those meetings is probably not the best bet.
You know, you gotta get engaged with them on social. That’s where they hang out. That’s how they operate. That’s how they think. And they’re also so hardened in many cases, like cold calling is then they’re hardened on it that like you’re, it’s a lost cause, but if you’re calling, if you’re going after HR executives or believe it or not, GCs, lawyers, if you’re going after supply chain, procurement, logistics, if you’re going after sales leaders, they answer their phone, you know, finance people, they answer their phones. It just depends, it depends on the situation.
And I’ll give you data. So I don’t, I don’t like to, you know, just spout this stuff off, you know, without anything backing it up. I’m looking at the numbers. When we sold Vorsight, I pulled numbers of all the meetings we’ve ever scheduled.So, get ready for this.75% of every meeting that Vorsight, the outsourcing business, ever scheduled that occurred, that we’re talking 36,341 meetings. Those are all director, VP, and C-level. 36,341. So 75% were as a result of a cold call. 16% or 7,831 were in email, 37 were the combination of the email and the call.
What we talk about there is basically you call them, they say, send me an email, you send the email, call them later, get the meeting. And then finally, only 2%, 1,066 for callbacks. Anybody who’s saying cold calling is dead, that 16 year worth of data. You’re crazy. Now, is cold calling dead based on what you sell and who you sell to, it very well might be. And the only way to ultimately answer that question, going back to my, you know, history of corporate executive board, where I was going to get fired in my first job out of college, I was going to get fired and I started testing and measuring what works.
You got to do that for your own business. And you can’t sit there and go, well, cold calling is dead because I think so. I feel like that’s what it is. I don’t like getting cold calls myself. That’s that’s confirmation bias. That’s, you know, you got to be smarter than that. Instead, what do you have to do? Test it. Go get a big enough sample size, thousands or tens of thousands of calls. See what your dial to connect ratio looks like. See when you get them on the phone, if you can get appointments. If you’ve got healthy numbers, it actually might be a lower cost of sale than other channels like marketing.
So the statistic that you quoted is when you sold Vorsight, which was what, three, four years ago?
Three months ago.
Oh, it just happened?
Yep. So that’s through May of 2021.
Okay. And what was the time period? It was like 10 years or 15 years?
16, a little less than 16. It was like, cause we didn’t have Salesforce in the beginning. Let’s call it 15 years of data.
15 years. So, okay. So maybe the, you know, the average time that is early 10,000s, 10,000 tens. So a lot of things have changed since. So what are the alternatives to cold calling?
So let’s talk about, that’s a great question. Let’s talk about the division of the message and the medium of delivery, the medium that’s used for delivering. And Steve, I don’t know what it is, but people get all wrapped around the axle and obsessed with the medium of delivery. They never asked me about the message. They always asked me about, hey Steve, do you know how there are these new things where you can send these videos, you can get a video of yourself. It’s like, you know, it’s called, there’s bomb, bomb, vidyard, you know, yeah, Drift has one.
And you send a pre-recorded message, I call it a video prospecting message, asynchronous. And they’re like, Steve, what about that? Well, we tested those and we didn’t have any lift. It actually, to the contrary, we had worse conversion rates than the same exact message delivered over email. We tried to keep the message constant. We tried to keep the variables constant. But the last time we tested it, to be fair, was 2017. So I’m trying to get a company to retest it now.
So if anybody’s interested in doing that, contact me, BombBomb’s even offered, because they wanna do the same. They’ve offered for free, you know, to do this. Also one of our customers is called Kaltura with a K. They’ve offered to do an experiment like this as well. So we got to test that video. LinkedIn, we’ve already talked about, or other social media platforms, engaging other social media platforms. If they hang out at Instagram, I don’t really know Instagram personally, but if you know Instagram and your prospects hang out on Instagram, that’s a perfectly viable channel, you know, Twitter, other places like that.
And then you go into, you know, of course, email, and then you’ve got different choices to make. Are you going to use cadence or sequence emails, which you can customize a little before you send them out, but they’re generally more generic? And can you get away with it? If you have a very large addressable market, let’s say you sell to Main Street USA businesses like hair salons. In this country, there are hundreds of thousands of hair salons. So if that’s your target prospect, I can use an email sequencer cadence tool like a sales loft outreach, conquer front spin concert, you know, Zant.
There’s a dozen of them. I can use one of those and I can probably, if I consistently send out a hundred emails a week, I’m consistently going to get about, you know, three or four appointments from that per week. That works perfectly fine. But if you’re going after, like I was talking to someone this week and they said, we’re only targeting the senior most person in the real estate department and Fortune 1000 companies, which means there’s only a thousand potential prospects today for his business. And he’s like, what do you think of sending out generic cadence emails and blasting it? I’m like, I think that’s a terrible idea because you’re gonna burn through your market really fast.
You have to be very, very thoughtful. You have to craft very good messages. You have to research the contacts, research the companies, know something about them. We call it three by three research. Find three points on the company and contact in three minutes. And by the way, you can use Google for free to do this. Most people don’t realize Google, you can change the time parameters. If you go to tools and you can change your time parameters, so you can search for someone using quotation marks, which is bullying search and the company name and then change the time parameters and get recent stuff. So it all depends.
So what’s the three by three? What’s the three by three method?
Three by three, find three points on the company and or contact in three minutes. What do I mean by three points? Contextual information. Something as simple as they have a new product launch in their company. They have executive changes. They got a new CEO, they’ve got funding. So those are all business level ones. Or it could be individual ones. Your prospect wrote a blog. Your prospect shared content on LinkedIn. Your prospect changed jobs and they used to work at one of your customers.
So you can say, hey, Steve, I saw you used to work at company XYZ. Do you know Fred over there? They’re actually one of our customers. You might not even know it. Those kinds of things. Or here’s another great one that no one does. This is amazing to me that no one does it and I’ll give you the data. Leverage second degree connections. So if you know someone that knows the prospect, you’re 568% more likely to get the meeting than if you don’t. How do I know that number so precisely? Now granted, that was a test I did in 2014. We tested it.
We ran a true A-B test, and in group A, we referenced second-degree connections, and I didn’t get to control it. That was part of the thing, because a lot of times, people will see the common connection, and they’ll go, I don’t really know Susan very well. I don’t want to reference her. Here we go again with a self-limiting bias. That’s a personal bias that I have. Instead, it was all automated. Sample size was big enough. I can give you the link to put in the show notes here. And what we found was you’re five and a half times more likely to generate a meeting if you reference someone that you know in common versus you don’t.
And you know what, even if you don’t know the person, it didn’t matter. I had two people out of all of them, 112 was the group B, group B, 112 people in group B, two of them wrote back to me and said, how do you know Steve Prada, by the way, two of them, it didn’t matter. So that’s what I’m all about. I’m all about whatever is going to put the most amount of opportunities in your pipeline with the least amount of calories burned. That’s it, right?
So, Steve this is obviously, this is specific stuff, the different ways you can approach them, LinkedIn, email, the three by three changes, come on acquaintances, I love this stuff. So let’s say I have a system of finding the right activity, and I’m getting the results, I’m getting the connections, I’m getting the meetings, and then I want to be a really good salesperson who can convert those meetings. So this is where ExecVision comes in. You talk about pattern recognition and human intelligence as the two kind of stepping stones to improving the performance of the sales people. So what do these mean?
And to clarify something too, it’s also if it’s the unscheduled unexpected call, that works too, or the scheduled expected call by the prospect. So ExecVision, it doesn’t matter what the sales motion is. Actually, Steve, this is interesting. We’ve got customers that their marketing team drives inbound phone calls. So they’re in more of like a call center kind of environment and they sit on a call queue. So those salespeople sit on a call queue and then all of a sudden, boom, their screen pops and they’re talking to someone and that person called them.
So it really doesn’t matter the sales motion or rhythm. Again, I can put a link for there. But let’s talk about pattern recognition. So there are simple axioms in sales, especially in B2B sales, like we want the talk, listen ratio to be somewhere in the 50-50 range, generally speaking. We don’t want to get it to, like once we start getting to talking 80% of the time, that’s usually a problem. It depends on the call type, but that’s generally true. Or things like, and of course, asking questions and more open-ended questions is good.
Things like how we represent our company and our value proposition. And are we doing our messaging and value proposition in a crisp, coherent way? Are our salespeople even talking about all of our products or asking questions that lead the buyer to our products? So for example, Steve, we’ve got a bunch of customers that, you know, they’re salespeople and we started working with them, we’re selling their flagships, you know, customers that you would know the brands instantly, but they don’t sell products, you know, three, four, five, six, seven.
And those are the products that have the high margins. So what they’re trying to do is they’re trying to say, hey, sales team, you’re really good at selling the stuff that everyone knows about. I want you to even just ask a couple of questions about this other stuff, like web hosting, for example. Like, oh, and I just kind of curious before I let you go, I know I just sold you domain registration. Who does your web hosting? Are you happy with them right now? Simple things where if they just ask that question consistently, you know, 30% of the time they’re going to go, actually, I’m not happy with my web hosting. What? You guys do that? I didn’t even know you guys did web hosting.
I thought you guys only did domain registration. See what I’m saying? So then all of a sudden, boom, they took an order that had a very, very slim margin and they tripled the revenue. But more importantly, they probably 10x the profit because their hosting is a highly profitable, but their domain registration is very competitive and not very profitable.
So, the pattern recognition is about recognizing what the star salesperson does and basically mirroring those best practices and teaching to other people?
There you go. What are the best people doing differently? And it’s pattern recognition using the transcription with the speech to text, the intonation, those kinds of things, and the talk-listen ratio, the amount of back and forth that happens in the conversation which we call the interchanges per minute. And then based on seeing that these are what the sales, best salespeople are doing differently. Now the problem is the, this is actually the bigger problem. The pattern recognition actually kind of is the easier part these days.
There are other people who do that too. What’s the hard part is, how do I get the human beings to then change behavior? And that is training, that is coaching. And it’s having a coaching culture that’s embedded in the organization. That’s why our customers have been buying a lot more and we’ve had negative churn the last two quarters because they are just like, we know where the reps are struggling, now how do I change? How do I systematically over a period of time change behavior? Because the reality is if you give a salesperson a piece of feedback, do they implement it right away? No.
So how do you create that culture?
You have to have a series of coaching meetings over a period of time, and you have to have a way of tracking and managing it and keeping it all in place. You have to. There’s no other way to do it. Another big secret, and I actually learned this from one of our customers, is get the reps involved in their own development. So there is the old adage, you’ve probably heard it, people value more what they conclude for themselves than what they’re told. I learned that from my mentor, Tom Snyder, although I’m sure you learned it from someone else.
People value more what they conclude for themselves than what they’re told. Makes sense, right? Like if your wife tells you to do something, it might sink in, it might not. But if you say, geez, I gotta go change that light bulb right now, like you’re gonna do it because you concluded it for yourself.
So how is that relevant to this? Well, if we can get the rep to be self-aware of their own performance gaps and self-aware of the behavior changes that they want to make, the likelihood, the probability of them actually making those changes is way higher than if you tell them, oh, by the way, you’re not asking enough questions about our other products or, oh, by the way, that one objection that you keep getting, you’re not overcoming it well and you should do it like this instead. They’re not going to change. Ideally, you’re the guy that’s facilitating this process.
There’s another great framework. I’ll give you another framework, a coaching framework. And this comes from professional ski instructors. And I love this. Okay. It’s called observe, describe, prescribe. I learned it from a guy named, who goes by Kenan. He’s one of these sales kind of thought leaders, sales gurus who just decided to go by one name. So Keenan, a good friend of mine, really good skier, mogul skier in Colorado, and a professional ski instructor. And he and I went out skiing, and I’m a good skier, not as good as this guy. At the bottom of the mogul field, I get kicked out.
I kind of can do like 10 moguls, and then boom, I get bucked out of it. And he pulls me over and goes, hey Richards, Richards, he calls me Richards with an S, I got no S. Richards, I got to tell you something. He goes, do you want to hear what you’re doing? And that was the key to starting the coaching conversation. Do you wanna hear what you’re doing? So if he pulled me in and said, here’s what’s going on, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. It’s gonna be Charlie Brown’s parents. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. I’m not going to listen.
It’s gonna go in one ear and out the other and I’m gonna go up there and I’m gonna do the same mistakes I’m doing again. But instead he goes, do you wanna know what you’re doing? That’s a compelling question. I’m like, yeah, I do. And he said, what’s happening is your arms are here by your sides. And when you hit the mogul at this point, it’s bucking you up, whereas it doesn’t feel like you’re rolling over it. And sooner or later, you get kicked in the back of your, in your heels of your skis. You start sitting down on the heels of your skis and your weight goes there and you feel nervous and you ski out of the field.
And I went, you’re right. So what did he do? He didn’t tell me what I didn’t do. He didn’t say, oh, you’re not doing this with your hands. You’re not doing that. He told me what I did do. And then he explained the impact of what I did. He observed, he didn’t judge. He’s not Simon Cowell on American Idol. That’s not your job as a CEO and entrepreneur with a sales team. He simply described what he saw. He got my permission. Do you want to know what you did? I said, yes. He described what he saw me do.
He asked me about the impact and that’s why you feel like you get kicked out of the mobiles, right? I’m like, yeah, you’re right. That’s the impact. And then he said, here’s what I want to do instead. Here’s what I want you to try. He then described, so observed, prescribed a way forward which was stick your arms out as far as you can and ski down the mobiles like you’re in a 70s ski video. And I did it. We rode the lift up. I did it. I went down the whole thing. And that one coaching session that took 90 seconds has changed my life and ability to wait.
I like that he asked the question, and then when you gave him the permission, your attention, then he described what you were doing, not what you should have been doing, because the brain doesn’t hear, you don’t do that, you just hear, okay, that, and then you just ingrain it even more, and then prescribe is give you the instruction. So that’s fascinating stuff. So Steve, if people would like to learn more, I mean, you sent me a link about the coaching videos, it’s just super cool.
I want to check out more of them. I just listened to half of one of them, but there’s a bunch of them about showing people how you coach them on a call, a video call. It’s very good stuff. And it’s kind of, I was impressed that you don’t even take my information and just give me the access. So that was very cool. So if someone would like to access that and would like to perhaps reach out to you to have questions or want to engage with you, where should they go?
The best is connect with me on LinkedIn, Steve, last name Richard. They have recently changed my profile to an influencer, though, in an honor, it’s a little bit of an annoyance. To connect with me, you have to hit the three dots on the right and then send a connection request and I’ll accept it. And I put these free tips of the day on LinkedIn. Every day I do a tip, usually a sales tip, and there’s a whole history of those and they’re all completely free. No gate, no form, nothing.
And then as well, Call Camp, which is what you’re referencing. So Call Camp is, I did a webinar series several years ago. I think we did about 35 episodes where we broke down real sales calls for what works and what doesn’t, and all sorts of calls, discovery calls, demos, closing calls, cold calls, warm calls, you name it. Any flavor of customer success calls that you can imagine. And we have a expert analysis of each individual call, kind of like they break down football plays on ESPN in the old Gruden quarterback camp before John Gruden was the coach of the Las Vegas Raiders.
So yeah, that’s definitely worth checking out and studying. It’s free stuff and it’s very informative. So Steve, thank you for coming to the show and sharing your goodies. I think some people will have to slow down the recording because you’re talking 200 miles an hour. And I had my first experience last week. There was an IP attorney who made a video recording and I actually had to normally I speed it up and I listen to audio books but now I had to slow down to 0.75 so I could actually follow him and that may happen with your with this video as well. So thanks for coming and great information and for you listeners if you enjoyed the show the chat with Steve then please don’t forget to go on Apple Podcasts and rate and review the show. Subscribe on YouTube and stay tuned for next week because I’ll have another exciting entrepreneur coming on the show. Thank you, Steve.
- Pinnacle: Five Principles that Take Your Business to the Top of the Mountain
- Steve’s LinkedIn
- Cracking the Sales Management Code by Jason Jordan and Michelle Vazzana
- Steve Preda’s Book: Buyable
- Complete the Buyability Assessment for Your Business