Q: Thanks for taking the time to sit with us, Charlotte. First off, please tell our readers about yourself. What sort of people do you work with?
A: My pleasure, Elina. Thank you for having me. At Sandler we focus on sales skills development through different strategies such as ongoing reinforcement training, 1-1 coaching, and online materials. The majority of the people we work with are successful business leaders who are doing OK, but might have some frustration about sales – either they’re not where they’d like to be in terms of profit and revenue, concerned because they don’t have a repeatable, reliable selling system to forecast sales and evaluate performance, or worried because their sales team isn’t comfortable or doesn’t know how to prospect for new business.
Q: What prompted you to become a Sandler sales trainer?
A: I wanted to take in a leadership role that would change people, in whatever way, for the better. At Sandler, we focus on the behaviors, attitudes, and techniques of our clients and so tackle improvements from many different angles. I wanted to work in something that had substance beneath it, which would take time, commitment, and be challenging. Sandler takes me and our clients out of our comfort zone, which is where I believe change happens.
Q: What sort of people do you like working most with?
A: The people I like working most with are those that are truly committed to see things improve, agents of change. When the pain of changing is greater than the pain of staying the same, people won’t change. When people commit to changing, but don’t, it’s a waste of our time and theirs, and that’s what we work hard to avoid.
Q: What sort of “issues” do you deal with most often?
A: Our clients come to us for a number of reasons. Usually, though, they misunderstand what is meant by prospecting. They believe they are prospecting, when really, they hide behind marketing tools and wait for the phone to ring. We call this passive prospecting. In our experience, active prospecting is what gets more people through the door – asking for referrals on a daily basis, picking up the phone and cold calling, making sure to follow up when attending a networking event, and so on.
Q: How can our subscribers reach you for a consultation?
A: We invite anyone interested in what we do to come “Crash A Class.” We hold them every Monday from 12pm-1pm. At no cost, we invite people to come in and talk to our existing clients, ask them questions on what Sandler has done for them, and see one our trainings live. It is hard to put in words what we do: in our experience, prospects get the most value from seeing one of our training sessions live.
Q: What is something you encourage your clients to do?
A: We encourage our clients to keep a “Cookbook” for success. A Cookbook outlines what revenue-generating behaviors he/she should be doing on a daily basis. It includes anything from cold calling, to warm calling, seeking out referrals using our LinkedIn tools, networking events, 1-1’s with other business leaders, and so on. The most successful Sandler trainers and clients have been those that follow their Cookbooks on a weekly basis.
Q: What sort of things do you keep in mind when cold calling?
A: Cold calling is a gem for revenue generation. We focus on coming up with different pattern interrupts that will throw the prospect off-guard and keep him/her on the phone longer. We tailor our 30-second commercials so that it speaks to the prospect, rather than what we offer. A little bit ago I actually cold called the owner of ADP Payroll and he was impressed I managed to get through his secretary. It’s all about using pattern interrupts.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do on a daily basis?
A: Journaling. As cheesy as it may sound, journaling works. I write down my daily affirmations, read them out loud and it gives me the energy to fuel through the day. I realize there are many obstacles thay come up when prospecting, but when I journal about them on a daily basis, they become easier to surpass. I absolutely love the journal.
Q: What is most difficult about your job?
A: The most difficult aspect I would consider to be prospecting meetings. If, at the end of a prospecting meeting, one of us should be exhausted, we want it to be us; the prospect must think that we are the easiest person to talk to – this means that we have to work hard. The more we ask questions, the more we find out about how/if we can help the prospect, and tailor our services so that it does add value to that person. Otherwise, we won’t want that person to join us.
Q: What’s one thing you want our readers to remember about Sandler training that will maybe prompt the to reach out to you?
I guess if your reader is massively ahead of budget/target, and sees no reason that the situation will deteriorate, then they shouldn’t reach out to us. If, however, you have a reader that’s hoping things will get better soon, I’d like them to remember ‘hope’ is not exactly a high-growth strategy: they should contact us to figure out whether or not we have the tools to help them grow more quickly and more sustainably.
Thank you, Charlotte, for sharing your knowledge with our subscribers. This is Elina signing off until next month’s spotlight interview. Have a great month!