SALES with ASLAN Ep. 130 – The 5 Drivers to Confidence & Speaking with Authority (Part 1)

Welcome to SALES with ASLAN, a weekly podcast hosted by ASLAN Co-founders Tom Stanfill and Tab Norris, geared at helping sales professionals and sales leaders eliminate the hard sell. At the end of the day, we believe that selling is serving. ASLAN helps sellers make the shift from a ‘typical’ sales approach, to one that makes us more influential because we embrace the truth that the customer’s receptivity is more important than your value prop or message.

The goal of these interviews is to spotlight various experts in the world of sales and sales leadership – sharing informational stories, techniques, and expert interviews on the sales topics you care about.

 

The following are notes from Ep. 130 – The 5 Drivers to Confidence & Speaking with Authority (Part 1)

In this episode, Tom Stanfill and Tab Norris share 5 simple questions that will help you discover what is keeping you from being the ultimate influencer.

 

Listen to the conversation here:

Or check out the full transcript:

00:13

Tom Stanfill

Welcome to another episode of sales with Azlan. I’m your host, Tom Stanfield, and here with my extraordinary co-host, Dr. Tab Norris, the Chuck Norris of sales training.

 

00:27

Tab Norris

I like the doctor. That’s a nice little addition. I, I, I, I haven’t earned that, but I’m taking it.

 

00:34

Tom Stanfill

You haven’t, you have in my book, my friend, you had definitely our doctor, my brother, how you doing today?

 

00:41

Tab Norris

Fantastic. Like always I love our time together and get to talk about some truth.

 

00:48

Tom Stanfill

Yeah. I’m I’m, I’m overly optimistic about our topic today. That’s my new, superlative, overly optimistic. I don’t know if that’s a superlative, I’m struggling with the definition of superlative, for those of you who have heard our last podcast, we talked about that, but I am, I am… I’ve gotten interested in this topic of confidence and that’s what we’re going to talk about today is, we, one of our focus areas, and one of the things we’d like to highlight on the podcast and actually everything we do at ASLAN is study extraordinary people and more specifically extraordinary sellers, extraordinary leaders. One of the things I’ve noticed, and I’ve always been fascinated by is how competent they are. People that are very influential are extremely competent. They speak with definitive statements. They, they position themselves. They command the stage. People listen to them, they speak with authority.

 

01:47

Tom Stanfill

They speak with, I love the quote that kind of describes them because I remember somebody was interviewing Steven Colby or, oh, you said, and it may have been Oprah. I don’t know who was interviewing, but he said, people, Americans buy certainty. They don’t buy facts.

 

02:01

Tab Norris

That’s so true.

 

02:04

Tom Stanfill

When sales and leading, we need to be certain, we need to be, we need to be confident. I talk about how do we, how do we communicate with confidence so that people will respect this, listen to us, follow us. A lot of us struggle with that. I’ve struggled with that from time to time. Wanted to share the big five questions that will help you determine if you’re struggling with confidence, what you can do about it. Are you with me tab? What do you think about.

 

02:31

Tab Norris

With you? I will. I was good. You know, it’s kind of interesting. I’m fascinated by the subject as well, because I think I’ve always just assumed you were born that way, seriously, like, that person, they just,

 

02:44

Tom Stanfill

Yeah. They just kind of look like they don’t care. 

 

02:47

Tab Norris

They don’t care. And they it’s, but you’re right. I, I think there are ways that we can improve and we can make that stronger. So I’m gonna,

 

02:56

Tom Stanfill

I think that’s a good point to have, because sometimes we think of people that communicate with authority or confidence have a certain type of personality and it’s really not a personality or even a level of charisma. It’s, it’s almost, it CA it emanates, which we’re going to talk about today from knowledge that they really know what they’re talking about. There’s people that say things very quietly, but succinct and with, a lot of clarity in everybody’s like, yep, okay. That guy knows what he’s talking about. That woman knows what they’re talking about. We want to talk about it, and some people speak with brilliant, loud, booming voice and passion, but that all emanates from a certain, some certain truths. That’s what we’re going to talk about today. So, excellent. Number one question that we need to ask ourselves if we’re struggling with our confidence or we’re sensing that people maybe aren’t listening to us is, are you relying on other people’s information about your solution?

 

03:51

Tom Stanfill

In other words, are you relying on someone else’s truth about what you do and how you solve your customer’s problem, or is this truth that you figured out for yourself? I’ll give you a little quick example to have, I know you have one that I want you to share with early in the early days of ASLAN, we were working with a large home builder. I don’t know, they must’ve built 500,000 houses a year and had a large salesforce. As part of our process is we, I wanted to meet with a number one sales guy. One of the hot topics in the organization was the new builder that had come in town who was building it seemingly the same house, but less expensive. A lot of people were like, they all, and the, the training organization and the leadership was all telling the reps what to say, here’s what you need to say about why we’re better.

 

04:41

Tom Stanfill

A lot of the reps just write it down and then they would just, okay, that’s what you want me to say. And, and I met with the top rep and I said, so what did you do? How do you sell against this numbness, this, this villain. He goes, I went to their houses,

 

04:55

Tab Norris

I love it.

 

04:55

Tom Stanfill

He goes, I walked through every single mile home I could walk through. I looked at everything they did. I looked at where they got their wallpaper. I looked at their seat. He goes, he goes, I know more about their house than they do. And he says, I know we’re better. And here’s the reasons. He listed and I’m like, I’m in, I’m buying it. I mean, I, I just was completely convinced because he was convinced. I know you, you kind of have a similar story.

 

05:16

Tab Norris

Yeah. Well, I love that because it wouldn’t, he, if he hadn’t done, if he hadn’t gone and figured out his own truth, you’re right. He would have just been like everybody else. That is what separates the good to great, right. That’s a perfect example of that. I’m going to give you the bad example.

 

I was a youngster Tom, first sales job, first out of college, 22 years old, thought I knew it all my friend. I’m sure you remember those days.

 

05:52

Tom Stanfill

Coming through that, I was very much that guy,

 

05:55

Tab Norris

Motorola days, you know, the stupid stupid confidence. I didn’t have what we’re talking about here. I came, I did, I blew through training. I crushed it, you know? Yay. I’m awesome. I’m ahead out, and I made it out of my first big meeting and one of my first big meetings, a large construction company in Atlanta. And I was so confident. I just came in with just brimming with confidence because I got all A’s in all my tests and training. Right. I know, they’re lucky to have me.

 

So he fires in a price. Objection, it may. Which of course, I’m completely equipped for…

 

06:33

Tom Stanfill

Completely.

 

06:33

Tab Norris

 I’ve crushed this one before. Bottom line is I give them the company line of why he should spend 30% more on our equipment because it was well worth it. I gave all these details and it was really great. In role-plays up in Chicago, it worked like a dream and he stopped me and I’m just smiling at him. He goes, well, but can you just tab, tell me some examples of how that has worked out for some other construction companies in this area.

 

07:04

Tom Stanfill

In other words, you obviously have the experience because where this information comes from.

 

07:09

Tab Norris

I was so confident instantly. I’m just like, Ooh, that’s a really good question. I mean, I have nothing to say. I’m just like, just trust me. I mean, really literally just trust me. I mean, it just, it was a disaster, I was so confidence, just tanks, because it’s, to your point, I was banking on somebody else’s truth.

 

07:31

Tom Stanfill

Right? If you can’t begin the sentence with here has what I’ve seen or in my experience, the customers that have done this, or here’s what I’ve experienced. Did you speak from your own truth? You’re going to be confident. So that shook you.

 

07:46

Tab Norris

Yes. I mean,

 

07:46

Tom Stanfill

We all, we all experienced that. I think the, really the key, and I’ve seen this with, hundreds of reps that I’ve worked with there’s to me, I would divide them into two categories. There’s people that go, why is that true? Like one of the things I will tell people in the joy, as let’s say, there’s 11 unique roles in sales, right? We have trainings specifically for these 11 roles because they’re slightly different and they need slightly different. Some people just write that down and other people are like, what do you mean by that? And they just pepper me with questions. Well, why is there 11? Why is there 12? What does that mean? That’s a little, and so, because what they’re doing is they’re taking my truth and it make it a dare truth. It’s good to listen like you did at Motorola, but we gotta verify.

 

08:24

Tom Stanfill

I think it’s too easy for us to just say, okay, that’s what they said, but we’ve got to have that level of curiosity. Love it. Tab.

 

08:32

Tab Norris

Well, especially people that are overly optimistic, that’s that, that’s superlative that you one no, seriously. I mean, if someone like me who tends to be pretty optimistic, it’s easy to fall into that trap.

 

08:44

Tom Stanfill

Yeah. Yeah. That sounds great. Yeah. It’s kind of having a curious, and I liked the question who told you that? Where’d you hear that? Where’d you, where’d you come from that? Where did you find that out? Why do you think that’s true? You keep peeling the onion and until you can you feel confident and believe it, but then it’s not sure. You gotta make it number question, is it your truth? Every customer you’re serving right. Has a problem. Your solution helps them solve the problem. What are the truths related to solving the problem? So you gotta make it your truth. The good news is you can steal the truth, right? Like if somebody else says, well, here’s the three things that have to happen for a customer to solve this problem, you can write those three things down and then just go verify that. All right.

 

09:35

Tom Stanfill

Number two, Tab. Are you ready for number two?

 

09:36

Tab Norris

I’m a little scared, but yes.

 

09:38

Tom Stanfill

Number two, ask yourself. The first question you ask yourself is, are you relying on other people’s information and not your own second is your goal to serve. Now, this one may not sound. It may not sound like, well, what does have to do with competence? Well, the problem is if you’re trying to win, or you’re trying to void unwanted information, like bad news, it shakes your confidence because ultimately motive is transparent, right? So that’s the truth. Okay? So I’m throwing the truth out there. Go verify is motive is ultimately transparent. I’m trying to win a deal, regardless of, what’s really right for the customer, then people are going to know it. I’m going to know it. And they’re going to know it.

 

10:27

Tab Norris

It’s going to rattle your coffee. I have a great example of this time. I mean, this just happened. This was last week. I was with a buddy of mine and he was raving. He’s trying to move to my town and he’s looking for a house and he’s raving about his real estate agent. I’m like, I don’t usually hear people raving about their real estate. It’s like, I’m curious. I’m like, wow. Why is she so magically wonderful. I’m thinking it’s gotta be, she gets a lot of houses for him. She’s very relational. She’s doing all these things. And, and here’s what his answer was. He said, she’s so confident and she’s constantly uncovering. Every time they go in the house, she’s constantly figuring out and uncovering why they should, why he should not buy this house. That’s her, the way she approaches every house is, we’re going to pick this thing apart.

 

11:21

Tab Norris

I’m going to tell you all the reasons you shouldn’t buy it. And he goes, it’s amazing. It’s like she makes her money on commission selling houses. If she doesn’t want me to buy, she’s going to protect me at all costs. He said, it makes me, I would never use a different.

 

11:37

Tom Stanfill

Think about how free that makes us if we’re standing in front of the customer and our focus. Our only focuses is what’s right for them. What is the truth? I’m okay with the truth, whatever that is. Don’t, don’t buy our solution or move in this direction or move it because it allows us to be free. We’re not begging for deal. One of our senior people told the story yesterday of working with one of our large customers several years ago. The customer is very early in the stages of saying, well, we’re bringing in all these different divisions. I’m in the process of trying to figure out whether we should to trainings solution we need, or do we need a consulting solution or do we need to do, or do we just need to do organizational? They know, look at bringing an organizational culture consultant and figure out how do we milled and integrate all the different divisions in our person.

 

12:25

Tom Stanfill

Our, our senior person said, I don’t know if you need training, which is what we sell, because I don’t know right now, I’m still confused as to whether you need training. Here’s the five or three, here’s the five things will tell me if you need, let’s go down this road together and figure out what you need. With that, you’re speaking with such confidence because you’re free. You’re not trying to, I’m trying to get you to do something and I’m uncomfortable and unsure if you’re going to do it. Yeah.

 

12:51

Tab Norris

Yeah. You’re so calm. It is freeing and it builds so much credibility to,

 

12:57

Tom Stanfill

Well, I remember you kind of were. I remember you told this story one time, have you got an objection because somebody didn’t want to take, so we charged licensing for our content. Cause it’s our, it’s our capital intellectual property. Thank you. I was basing on that term and somebody didn’t want to pay for them. So w what did you say?

 

13:20

Tab Norris

Oh, yeah, that was great. Yeah. We’re going through it. How you go through the whole sales process? We’re at the end, we’re wrapping it up and they’re like, Hey, tad, this looks fantastic. Everything looks good. We’re ready to go hit all. We’re going to start rolling this training out. They said, we love everything in the here, except for that licensing thing. Like you said, this intellectual property, if you can just take that out, we’ll sign this thing. We’re good to go. I said, no problem. I can get it right out of there. That’s going to greatly reduce the cost on this thing. I said, all, I just want to be clear though. I’ll all we’ll have to do is we can deliver whatever program you want to deliver over. If you can just get that program over to me, I’ll make sure that I get my facilitators up to speed so they can go actually deliver that program.

 

14:01

Tab Norris

If you could just get that to me, I can get that. I think she goes, well, that’s why we’re talking to you. We don’t have a program. I said, exactly. That’s why you’re going to pay that little fee right there, because that’s 20 plus years of us building that program that you don’t have. Okay.

 

14:20

Tom Stanfill

What if she, and if she would have said, we have a great program and it addresses this, then you would have said, you can’t lose. You can’t be shaken. You can’t be. Because again, motive is ultimately transparent. You’re comfortable thinking if you’re really just to serve the customer. I remember I was in a similar situation when were working with FedEx years ago and they had a training program in place for, it was free to the division were working with. And I remember were talking, It was you can’t, what I mean? It was offered by a well-known organization and it was free to the PR to the head of this division were talking to. I S and were talking to their inside sales organization. That’s too, that’s what this was his organization that he was responsible for. I said, if the program that you offer addresses the 18 unique challenges of selling over the phone and an inside sales, then you should use that program.

 

15:15

Tom Stanfill

I said that very conflict, because I believed it. I would, I wasn’t having to try and make up anything I wasn’t having to engineer. I’m like, this is the truth. If you’re, there’s a unique challenges inside sellers face. If the program addresses that you should do that. I knew that truth because then how did I know that truth? Because I’d spent time verifying that and studying that. So love it. All right. Let’s move to number three, question to have. This may be, I think the most difficult one, but I think what maybe sets us apart. When we think about speaking with confidence in people, listening to what we say, and really gaining the respect of our audience, especially the decision-makers who typically don’t meet with sellers. Right? We’re trying to, if we want to move up the upstream, we need to communicate and demonstrate that we’re not just somebody that provides the same information that we would provide on the internet, on a Google, right?

 

16:13

Tom Stanfill

We need to be able to help. If they’re going to follow us, we need to be somebody worth they’re going to lead. I think the number one driver, even though it’s our third question tab,

 

16:20

Tab Norris

But see you worked it up, but.

 

16:22

Tom Stanfill

I worked it up. I build it up is have you identified the principles related to your solution? And here’s what I mean by that. Truth can be as pretty broad term truth can be about, facts about what you offer. It can be about ROI. It can be answers to questions. It could be, any information that you need a product, what’s the truth related to that, but principles or laws that are always, that always occur. Like one of the things that we might say in our w when we’re working organization is change happens. One-to-one not in a workshop, right? So that’s not just a truth. It’s like a principle. If you want change to happen, you’ve gotta be able to work with people on a one-to-one basis. I think that’s really critical for, for either sellers or leaders is to identify what are the principles related?

 

17:14

Tom Stanfill

If so, what tells you in any situation, if you do this will happen. That’s one of the things that drive competence.

 

17:21

Tab Norris

Yeah. And you’ve always been you’ve. You taught me that, when we first met, you’ve always been about, true about principles. I mean, everything’s principles, you, cause you always, you’ve always said, that’s something you can always rely upon. When you start questioning or you’re struggling, just always go back to that principle, what is the principle? And it just, it’s very comforting. It’s like, you’ve got a rock that you can kind of stand on because you’re going to violate that.

 

17:50

Tom Stanfill

What’s interesting too, is, is everybody when it’s really a principle that like, one of the principles that we share in our program is when someone’s emotionally closed more, you try to persuade them. Do they, do they come to you? Or do they move away? The more you try to persuade someone who’s emotionally closed, the more closed they become. Everybody. Everybody agrees with that because they know it’s true. It’s like, the tug of war principle, you say, you try to pull somebody or force them. They pull back, they resist and everybody goes, yep, that’s true.

 

18:21

Tab Norris

So no one ever disagrees with that.

 

18:23

Tom Stanfill

We all know it’s a principle. We, it’s like, it’s just, if you jump off a cliff, you will fall. I don’t know what that principle is. The law of gravity. You obviously, you do a lot of coaching in your role, and that’s some of the, you work with, we talked about working with leaders. What are some principles that you’ve seen that are important for leaders to understand?

 

18:50

Tab Norris

Yeah. I mean, it’s this, I mean, I always, I talk a lot, man. Obviously I spend a lot of time with sales leaders and it’s, we’re selling salespeople on changing behavior, on changing, just changing the way they approach becoming better at what they do. So it’s the same truth. The, one of the one I use often times is you think about, and I think anybody that’s that coaches that’s in a sales leadership position, you had somebody on your team that maybe had an ego problem. Maybe they didn’t really want to hear feedback, feel like they have it all figured out. I don’t think I’m alone in that. And you know, just very unreceptive and,

 

19:32

Tom Stanfill

Chin can shake our confidence when they, we may push back or challenge your recommended.

 

19:38

Tab Norris

They’re always very confident. These people are pretty much pretty darn competent. I mean, if you’re going to have an ego problem, it can shake you. It can rattle you as a leader thinking, well, so the principle I go back to is it helps me be confident.

 

19:57

Tom Stanfill

Is.

 

19:58

Tab Norris

The, is the polar principle, right? Which the whole life, the concept here is that if I want someone to understand my point of view, I need to first understand their point of view. Right? I need to be able to articulate their point of view. Well, that is a principle is not fuzzy. It’s not iffy. The greatest thing I can do instantly, I just was talking to a sales leader of the day. He was asking about a situation. I said, what’s the principle. I said this to him. He goes, what do you mean? I said, we talk, what’s the principal. He goes, oh, is that take the trip thing? Right? I said, yes, what is the truth? Right. I need to first start with him. He goes, well, but I already know everything about this guy said, I back to the principal was the principal. Even if you think, the truth, even if you do know the truth, you focus on them first and their perspective.

 

20:47

Tab Norris

That is one that’s very powerful when you’re doing any kind of coaching.

 

20:51

Tom Stanfill

Such good. That, when you look at all of the Ted talks and the people that go viral and they have millions and millions of followers, millions of minutes of listeners or watches or likes or whatever you want to, however you want to measure it, they speak in principles. They speak in and we can, you could call them true, but really it’s they speak in these laws about how humans work and we’re hungry for that because a lot of people are confused and that’s our job in sales or leadership is to provide clarity around what needs to happen and what you need to do. Like sometimes I will say to organizations or working with when I’m in, we’re getting to know them. I’ll say the why behind change is actually more important than the, what I’ll say, why do you want people to sell more? Right?

 

21:43

Tom Stanfill

Because ultimately the why drives their motivation to sell. And it’s not just money. It’s, what’s the why now of course, Simon Sinek talked about that. We need to focus on selling, folk, people buy the why not the, what are the, how so the, I stole of that from Simon, but that’s that really, it gives us confidence in communicating. Also people write down when you communicate a principle, people will write it down. All right. Number, let’s move on to number four, tab. Number four question is, are you clear about who you are serving? Another way to say that as are you clear about who you are not serving. Other words, we are not right for everybody, you can’t serve everybody. I think when people are clear about saying, we do this for these organizations, and another way of saying that is we don’t work with these organizations.

 

22:34

Tom Stanfill

We, if you’d want this, or you’re interested in this, or you need this is who we are. They’re very clear versus looking desperate and saying, oh, we can do anything for anybody. I, you know, I’m a doctor. You need help. I’ll do it. Whatever, whatever you want. I, I got it versus Nope. We, we are very clear. The cool thing is this is how I remind myself to be passionate about who I serve and who I don’t serve is that if I really want raving fans, I’m going to have people that don’t like me. I’m to, if I’m going, if I’m clear about who I am, I’m clear about certain things that we are passionate about. Some people aren’t gonna like that. I gotta be okay with that, which drives my confidence.

 

23:16

Tab Norris

Well, it drives your confidence because you’re playing in your lane. I learned that early in when he started Azlan I tried to take care of everybody. Cause I’m like, oh yeah, annex training. I’m your man. I got I’ll annex you all day long. My friend, I can do anything for everything, which is not good because you can’t be really confident. Whereas.

 

23:34

Tom Stanfill

We know.

 

23:35

Tab Norris

You remember,

 

23:36

Tom Stanfill

You got to tell a story, okay? So those are the lists. They have no idea what to have some of them too. This is business early days, 26 years ago, tab an hour one of our first projects. Were working for a manufacturing company and were doing a project that we really didn’t know what were.

 

23:53

Tab Norris

Done, hanging parts.

 

23:56

Tom Stanfill

We were training. We were training people, that team train, were buying team training to people who weren’t in teams,

 

24:01

Tab Norris

Not in our lane.

 

24:02

Tom Stanfill

We needed a paycheck that we need. We were not confident. And were not in our lane. Somebody said, well, do you do work with annexes? And he goes, yeah, we do. Annex training has.

 

24:14

Tab Norris

Become, I don’t even know what.

 

24:17

Tom Stanfill

They were talking about. The answer was, yes, you guys train annex people. We train, we train annex people. Any people, any kind of people doing anything.

 

24:30

Tab Norris

Tom, to your point, I could have been, I was real confident when I said it, but maybe follow up question. The competence falls off the universe,

 

24:37

Tom Stanfill

Right? Yeah, yeah, exactly. Yeah. It will. That’s the fake confidence. We’ll get you we’ll get you so far, but it’s going to fail. It’s going to fail. Be clear about who you are be clear about.

 

24:51

Tab Norris

I really.

 

24:52

Tom Stanfill

Do. Yeah. It’s like, and so you can say that early on and say any, obviously we don’t, we can be very specific enough about it, that we don’t alienate people that we do serve. If you’re clear, cause like one of the things we’re passionate about is teaching sellers to serve. I mean, ultimately that we believe fundamentally you’re more successful fulfilled when you serve your customers. And some people don’t buy into that. Right. If I’ve made the decision, that’s okay. If you don’t want, if you don’t embrace our philosophy, then we probably, we don’t need to work together. And that’s fine. That helps me, that helps me get more comfortable in uncomfortable situations because we have a sense of saying, I gotta make this happen.

 

25:37

Tab Norris

Yeah. They’re all about process and speed. They don’t really care about that, but we got to make it work because we need money. We need money and we’ve, I can speak for both of us. We’ve had moments where we’ve slipped and it never pays off.

 

25:48

Tom Stanfill

Nope, Nope. Probably the last question to help you determine what’s keeping you from being confident, is it simply, have you had enough at bats because you may have the knowledge, you may have identified your principles. You may know the truth about everything related to helping your customer solve their problem. You may have chosen, you’re going to have chosen who you’re gonna serve and you may have the right motive, but when you’re on stage and the spotlight’s hot and they’re saying, all right, go. If you haven’t had enough at bats, you’re not going to be confident. You really, you need to be in putting those situations enough to where you’re comfortable and I’ll give a quick example to having them. I’m sure you have one. When we, when everything’s shifted to virtual and I had to start giving talks virtually, I went from being very confident, quote unquote, standing on a stage and looking at people in the eye.

 

26:41

Tom Stanfill

At first I was not at all. First I was very uncomfortable speaking. It just felt very awkward to me. I was more of a one-on-one guy. I was very afraid. It took me multiple at bats or attempts before I would, could finally stand on a stage and be confident and probably more bats for me than somebody else. And I was fine. All of a sudden went virtual and now I’m looking at a wall, I’m looking at a camera, nobody and I was uncomfortable again. There’s just a certain number of reps that we need to have. We need to put ourselves in that situation enough to where we get comfortable. We can stand and communicate with complex. Cause our brain shuts off when we’re super nervous, our brain shuts off.

 

27:22

Tab Norris

Yeah. Yep. Which feeds into what I’m a big fan of. When I, when I speak to a developing people, as sales leaders is you got to create environment where people can fail. You’ve got to create an environment where you try things, give it a shot, do your best. That’s okay because that’s how you get it back. You’re not going to be, I mean, gosh, virtual is a perfect example, from a sales, as well as the delivery standpoint, it was scary. You have people that have been doing this for 20 years. Right. All of a sudden, now it’s a whole different game and I’m like, Hey, it’s okay. Get in there, roll up your sleeves, give it all you got, your confidence will build. We’re going to do lots of simulations. We’re going to get a lot of fake it bats. And, and that’s the only way that’s, what’s got to happen.

 

28:10

Tom Stanfill

Yeah. They just embrace it. Embrace that when you do something new, especially if you’re new in sales and in your you’re going to get in front of, to present something. Also you get questions and you’re presenting the, either one really difficult customer or three people, or just, it’s just expected. It’s it’s, you’re not going to be perfect. Just to embrace that process and get enough reps, then the confidence will come versus saying, what? That didn’t go, well, I’m not good at this. I’m not, you let that undermine your confidence. Just say, this is part of the process and just keep pushing forward and embrace failure. Because I think one of the reasons I was uncomfortable with feedback early on is cause I didn’t want to hear the bad news. Yes. I wasn’t strong enough. I wasn’t. I was, I didn’t have the, I guess character really to say, tell me, I know I’m a, God got flaws.

 

29:05

Tom Stanfill

I know I need to improve. Tell me how to improve. It was, it was really an insecurity. As I got older and more mature, I’m like, of course I’m not perfect. Of course I need help. Don’t bring it on. Tell me. And it wasn’t personal. It was about helping me serve my customer better.

 

29:19

Tab Norris

Yeah. Tom, somebody told me this was, I thought it was a really good question. This was years ago. They said tab, where do you feel? You seem like you really enjoy speaking and you enjoy communicating. And I say, yes, I do. You know? You seem very comfortable and confident that I said, well thank you. I like that kind of feedback, Tom,

 

29:37

Tom Stanfill

I’ll accept that. You accept.

 

29:38

Tab Norris

That. They go, so how are you going to continue getting better? I said, I don’t know what you’re talking about. He goes, he goes, I would encourage you. You’re really what, what size group do you feel really comfortable communicating? When I say like, like 25 to 40 people, it’s like perfect. He said, so when are you going to sign up to teach 200 people or maybe 500 people? And I said, what do you mean? He said, guess what? You’ve got to start stretching yourself. You because if you’re comfortable here, now you need to move here. What it does think of, and guess what happened? You get a whole lot more confident when you’re in front of 50 people when you’ve been communicating in front of 250 people.

 

30:21

Tom Stanfill

And.

 

30:21

Tab Norris

It’s it’s really, it’s really true.

 

30:23

Tom Stanfill

Yeah. You’ve got it. You’ve got to push yourself outside your comfort zone or you’re going to slowly die. I mean, basically that’s where, I mean, that’s where growth happens is outside of our comfort zone and just embrace it and embrace it. Those are the people that are confident when we see that we watch them on stage and we watched them do their thing. It’s because they fallen a lot like right now with the Olympics, these people have fallen a lot. That’s why they’re good at what they do. One cautionary thing. I want to say because there is, as we pursue this, goal of being able to speak with authority and stand for in front of people so that we can communicate in such an effective way that people embrace our recommendation. There is, there is something we need to be aware of is sometimes confidence can lead to arrogance.

 

31:10

Tom Stanfill

We can, it’s almost like we feel so good about knowing the truth that we communicate to other people as if they’re less than. We want to always guard against communicating, Hey, this is what I’ve learned. Right. I’m, and I’m going to share with you some truths that I’ve learned, you may already know this, but here’s what I’ve learned. Here’s the things that I here’s the principles that I’ve developed over the years or here’s the truth. The customers that I’ve served, here’s the things that I’ve learned because when we talk and communicate as equals, then people are much more readily receptive to the recommendation or our point of view. When we talk down to people, then they’re going to resist it. The other thing is the other, the opposite is true is when we talk as if we communicate to them as if we’re below them, well, I don’t know.

 

31:57

Tom Stanfill

I don’t know if this is something you want to do, but I’m just a little salesperson and you’re Mr. Mint. You’re Mr. Executive, you know, that’s not effective either.

 

32:05

Tab Norris

Yeah. Yep. Well, and you did something right there in your first example that I think is really powerful. If, if you want to a nice litmus, I mean, you dropped the rope when the thing is very powerful. It’s, it’s a great checkpoint, if you’re very confident and you’re feeling very, you can always say, Hey, you may already get this. I think that’s a great thing to add to as a checkpoint, to make sure that you’re really trying your best to stay pretty humble and not be arrogant.

 

32:37

Tom Stanfill

I always think of it as it just switching these two words instead of sh you should do these things versus should what I’ve learned? I always like to think of, as I’m speaking in the eye, here’s what I’ve learned. Here’s what my experience has taught me. Here’s what I learned from my customers. Or here’s what I’ve learned in rolling this out over, 20 plus years doing it hundreds of times or if you’re even, and this is another thing we important point to kind of circle back to one of the truths we mentioned earlier, a lot of the truths we can find by talking to our other customers that are currently using our stuff, right? They’re a great source because we have access to all these decision-makers who are, most of us have, who are currently clients, and we can talk to them about what’s worked and that can be the source of our confidence and what we share.

 

33:27

Tom Stanfill

Just something to watch out for and something that I have to always guard against is get that. I know everything because I’ve been doing this a long time and you ought to listen to me, which really comes from sense of insecurity. I’m trying to sell myself rather than this , place of being grounded and speaking from an authentic self of saying, this is what I’ve learned. This is what we’re about. And this is what people have done. And I hope I can help you. Yeah. Well, tab I’ve loved love this conversation with you as always good to catch up with you, my friend, for this hope, I hope our listeners have found it helpful. If you have found it helpful, we’d love to hear from you like the podcast or give us comments, because this is one of the ways that we become a recognized by other people who are looking for quality podcasts or encourage us to continue is when we get feedback.

 

34:21

Tom Stanfill

So really appreciate that. Right. All right. Well, thanks for joining us for another episode of SALES with ASLAN.

ASLAN teaches sellers an easier, better way to gain access & influence unreceptive customers, by eliminating the hard sell.

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About ASLAN

The best way to get to know us is to know what we value. If we teach it we live it, because what we do speaks far more eloquently than what we say. We’ll always choose people over profits, and we’re most fulfilled and effective when we serve. It drives our culture, frames our training programs and transforms the lives of the clients we partner with.