Archive for November, 2010

BACKGROUND

Posted in Sales and Life on November 23, 2010 by Daniel Jacobs

BACKGROUND

I got interested in the area of sales, marketing and people in general when I was an intrepid student at the Michigan State University, employed part-time at a local accounting office on the path to becoming a CPA.

I had two realizations at that time that have served me in good stead ever since:

1.  I did not know everything there was to know, or even everything I needed to know.

2.  I was willing to listen and learn.

These two elements proved to be a winning combination and I became a life-long, interested student of sales, marketing and most importantly, people.

It didn’t occur to me to write these articles until a couple decades later while employed as the Senior Executive Vice President at a high-tech, business to business international marketing company. A major target of my job was to streamline the efforts of the sales executives and develop a rapid-launch system of training to get more results with less effort.

It was then that I began a focused, dedicated study to look beneath the fads and fashions of every-day selling to discover what worked and what didn’t.

I studied the books, manuals, and writings of the experiences of the wisest and most experienced people I could find in the field of sales; attended sales boot-camps, lectures and seminars; listened endlessly to recorded lectures and watched videos on the subject and much more. Then I threw out everything that was overly complicated or uncomfortably unworkable and kept only what worked.

I then carefully and quasi-scientifically examined everything to find out one thing:

Why did the simple, common-sense basics work every time?

My conclusions were then thoroughly tested with a real, live, real world working sales force to refine my discoveries. The results were phenomenally effective. The sales executives began to get more results with less effort – exactly what I was hoping for!

With this series of articles, the ‘heavy lifting’ has been done; the secret code underlying all sales success has been cracked and it’s surprisingly simple to understand and apply.

The underlying natural laws, the bedrock basic principles supporting all selling activities has been discovered and clearly outlined in these writings. Successful methods of applying these laws has also been examined and outlined.

Any “new discoveries” down the road on this subject will likely be refinements or extensions on the basic, natural laws of selling contained in these writings.

And all of this is now it is now in your hands, waiting for you to begin.

It is my wish to help you excel to previously unimagined heights. And once these common sense sales basics are understood and applied you will be on your way to accomplishing these goals – and doing it with effortless competence.

Enjoy the ride.

daniel w. jacobs
© 2008 -2030, all rights reserved

Resumés Are Boring

Posted in Sales and Life on November 21, 2010 by Daniel Jacobs

Most resumes are written only to benefit the writer, not the reader, so I’ll skip that whole process and just tell you what I’m really all about.

I’m only interested in one thing . . . helping people make more sales with less effort and have more fun doing it.

But, for those who find such things interesting, I have been directly or indirectly involved in sales and marketing consulting activities for companies in locations from Geneva, Switzerland to Shanghai, China and all throughout all the major cities in America.

DANIEL W. JACOBS
Curriculum Vitaé
– addendum

Here is a partial list of the cities where worked directly or indirectly involved in corporate sales activities:

Boston, MA
Martha’s Vineyard, MA
Chicago, Il
Grand Rapids, MI
Milwaukee, WI
St. Louis, MO
Oklahoma, OK
San Jose, CA
Silicon Valley, CA
Irvine,CA
Toluca Lake, CA
San Francisco,CA
Pleasanton, CA
San Diego, CA
Seattle, WA
Portland, OR
Kansas City, KS
Denver,CO
Dallas,TX
New York,NY
Washington,DC
Atlanta, GA
Munich, Germany
Frankfurt, Germany
Paris, France
Sophia Antipolis, France
Nice, France
Geneva, Switzerland
Zurich, Switzerland
London, England
Belgium
Netherlands
Luxembourg)
Shanghai,China
Chengdu,China.

And yes, I still have my Advantage Executive Platinum card (flying over 100,000 miles annually) showing that I’m now a permanent member of the Million Mile Club of American Airlines – to remind me of all the hours/days/weeks/months I have spent in the air over the years.

But I digress . . .

I also think that people I’ve personally worked with can give you a better idea of what I’m about than anything I can say. So, here are some excerpts from actual feedback received from past clients.

WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING:

“He doesn’t employ a “boxed” approach. Rather, he brings focus to the human/people aspect of the equation.”
– Fred Beyerlein, CEO

“The Sales Journal for the Working Professional” is an outstanding contribution to the science of the sales process. You have accomplished a “one of a kind” reference comparable to no other reference on the Internet or elsewhere. If you cannot find what you are looking for in the world of sales in this compendium such will not be discovered and it probably doesn’t exist.

The underlying sub-rosa of the psychological connectivity to the sales process is obvious in this work. You are truly a master of salesmanship in your understanding, presentation and penetration into the human psyche as it relates to all selling. If what you bring in terms of knowledge, experience and contribution does not bridge the gap of human understanding, such will not be bridged.
B.F. Brown, Ph.D.

“Dan is a different type of consultant. When I went to him for help, all he he said was: “Don’t tell me about the problem, tell me about the people.” As I shortly found out, the problem was with the people (including myself) and not the business.” – Jim Miller, CEO and Founder, Arlon Products, Inc.

“Dan listens first then analyzes the current and past challenges and only then offers ways of applying the correct solution in a way that solves the situation in a methodical and professional way.”
– Terry Puterbaugh, President, Mosiac, Inc.

“Dan Jacobs is a miracle worker. I’m glad I was put in touch with him. He helped me see how out of touch I’ve been, what I need to change and how to do it. He’s a great coach, I’m just sorry I didn’t do it sooner.”
– Steve Hafner, CEO & Co-Founder, KAYAK, Inc.

“He took command of the room, full of seasoned, veteran managers and executives. Then Dan expertly led us to a crystal-clear understanding of why some problems never resolved. We had been avoiding, explaining, justifying, ignoring, instead of facing it, acknowledging it and doing something about it.”
-Greg Marsden, President, Marsden Consulting

“Mr Jacobs was able to take a complex problem and break it down into simple, understandable elements – then help us to effectively overcome each identified obstacle resulting in a clearer understanding of what’s really happening.” – Willette Friday, President, Friday Consulting

“His direct, common-sense approach to problem-solving obtained effective results with no time wasted.” – Cary Kilner, Ph.D. Candidate

“His major asset is that he talks in ways that are brief, clear, and, most importantly, what he says makes sense. He never loses sight of the human aspect of any situation. ” – Ray Thomen, President Thomen Consulting

It’s easy to be tricked into little steps that seem insignificant when they occur only to realize later that you’ve strayed beyond your personal values without knowing it. Thanks for shedding the spotlight of truth on the area for me. – Steve Vachss, Exec. V.P., Presenternet

I am going to reference one of your articles to the MBA class that I teach, only with your permission of course. The article I’m interested in one of the best I’ve seen written on the subject. The title is, “Communication Magic in Sales“. Please get back with me when you can and provide me with your take on my referring them to the web site. – Prof. Billy Brown, Ph.D.

‘I am certain you are behind unlocking my husbands’ potential as an executive. He is truly in control now and I can see your fingerprints all over his transition to confidence.” – Kate Melnick, Co-Founder, 3-OM jewels

“I was scattered all over the place and nothing was getting done. In a few hours, your understanding and guidance helped me see why this was happening and what to do about it. This made all the difference.” – Tyler Gavin.,Exec V.P.

“Your counsel came at the right time. I avoided making a potentially dangerous decision and owe most of this to your help in sorting out what was important and what wasn’t.”  – Allen Wright, President, AW Enterprises, Inc.

“It was just what I needed. That wake-up call that got me to look at what was really going on. Without your help I would have left a lot of money on the table. We turned the company around and sold it for a huge profit.” – George Forest, Founder and CEO Forest Consulting Group

“You’ve helped me shaken loose from a very troubling business situation that has nagged my business efforts for SEVERAL YEARS! It’s kind of like the saying “I’ve just realized I’ve had a headache for years”. Well, I realized I had an unnecessary and very unwanted “boat anchor” around my proverbial business neck. I couldn’t have done it without your help.” – William Norman, President, William Norman Enterprises, Inc.

The Four Most Important Things In Sales

Posted in Sales and Life on November 21, 2010 by Daniel Jacobs

THE FOUR MOST IMPORTANT THINGS IN SELLING

Long ago, someone asked me to summarize the most important elements underlying all selling activities and do it in four basic points. Well, it took some doing, but I did it. Now here they are, the four most important things in all sales activities.

 The Four Things:

1. JUST SHOW UP. This one underlies all the rest. Unless you do this, nothing else will work. So even though it is a sub-point, it just could be the most important one of all.

2. Selling is an ACTION VERB; the word itself implies action. If I don’t make something happen, it will not occur. I don’t have to waste my time looking for excuses, justifications, or explanations of why the sale didn’t go as expected. Either I caused the sale to happen or I didn’t. It’s no more complicated than that. This realization was a life-changer.

3. People always buy a benefit. Knowing what people buy can make you a living, but knowing why people buy can make you rich.

This question of why people buy anything prompted my writing about it in the first place. The answer is always: People buy what they consider to be a personal benefit. Period.

By isolating this simple, commonsense basic underlying all successful selling, I could adjust my procedure as necessary during the sales process and bring about the desired result.

4. Focus on the people. This discovery was far and away the most important one of all. Because without the people, I could never make a sale.

Keeping my attention on the people and giving good service makes all the difference; nothing else even comes close. It’s always about the people and how you make them feel.

Never forget this important fact: You’re always in the people business, not the sales business!

People have told me that they like my writings because they’re reminded of what they already know but had forgotten. I believe this is because I have taken the heuristic approach to my discoveries. Further, I focus on quality of content as prime importance instead of just the process.

I don’t talk about my opinions or abstract, untried theories – just the simple basic discoveries that apply to anyone who cares to take a look.

The value of these four points cannot be overestimated.

They contain everything you need to know about selling.

Of course, to recognize the benefit they will bring you in your work, you may have to dig in and immerse yourself into a whole new world of sales and selling.

But you’re up for that aren’t you?

Cutting Through The Bull

Posted in Sales and Life on November 10, 2010 by Daniel Jacobs

Let’s get real. No sales book will instantly solve all your problems. But that’s not really what you’re looking for anyway, is it?

You don’t need a book to make you feel good about being a moderate plugging success. You’re just looking for something that will cut through the bull and give you an edge on the competition aren’t you?

Keep reading, because that’s what this book is all about.

The world has changed. Cutting through all the clutter and noise vying for the customer’s interest is daunting. Jaded and cynical customers often don’t believe what you’re saying, even when you do manage to get their attention. It’s a tough, competitive world we live in today and it’s getting tougher.

But I’ve discovered something that is vital to your survival. It’s a gemstone that will allow you to cut through the bull and focus on what is really important in the sales profession. 

Here is is: The primary building blocks of all selling (which separate winners from wannabe’s) is found in the basic principles, not the in methods.

When you lack this knowledge of the fundamentals, you fall back on using only methods, techniques and routines, which are secondary in importance to the principles.

Without a working knowledge of the basics of selling, you can’t adapt to the prospect’s problems and concerns that inevitably show up. As a result, you end up frantically trying one method after another to close the deal.

As you can’t shift gears when the client does, your tendency is to just push harder with what you have to work with. The result being that both you and the customer end up losing confidence in your abilities.

This time-honored quote says it best:

If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”

This saying is as true today as when Maslow wrote it in 1966. The fact that you may have closed one deal with this tactic makes it tempting tempting to use again. But that route is dangerous as school-yard bullying tactics are the wrong way to handle a customer.

Why?

Because this method doesn’t align with the basic principles of how to handle people.

Customers may forgive you once for making them feel uncomfortable, but they never really forget it.

When you have the right tools, know how to use them and know why they work, then you can keep your methods in line with the fundamental principles of selling.

Once you know why something works, it’s easier to adapt its use to fit any situation. While knowing both principles and methods is vital to your success, principles are always senior in importance to methods.

Keep your priorities in order and you’ll save yourself a lot of heartache and botched sales.

It’s always easier to do it the right way.

daniel w. jacobs
(c) 2009 – 2030, all rights reserved

I Know What You’re Thinking . . .

Posted in Sales and Life on November 10, 2010 by Daniel Jacobs

I know what you’re thinking . . .

You can’t stand another sales book crammed with untried theories, meaningless buzzwords and academic graphs written by someone who has never been in-the-trenches; or a text crammed with confusing acronyms ‘guaranteed’ to close any deal, but which only end up as more clutter in your mind.

I feel the same way.

If you’re looking for a sales book that is clear, simple, and relevant to your career, something that will give you new, fresh ideas for methods based on workable, common sense basics and not some oddball fad or fashion, your search is over.

I wrote this book for working professionals in the field of sales, for salespeople who already knew the ropes and those just learning and who needed a jump-start to get on the right path.

This is a Sales Journal which deals with the inner workings of selling. Every article has a gemstone of inspiration that will motivate you to do better, today.

You don’t have to read everything cover to cover before seeing results. Just pick any article that looks interesting, any one that grabs your attention and read it.

I guarantee that a careful reading will give you back more energy than it took to read it!

daniel w. jacobs
(c) 2010-2030, all rights reserved

Knowledge Is Power

Posted in Sales and Life on November 9, 2010 by Daniel Jacobs

INTRODUCTION

This is a book for working sales professionals.

Each article in this book was meant for application in the real world. Untried, quick-fix theories based only on opinions are not included. The focus is only on what works and why it works, every time.

“The Sales Journal” was written to accomplish two things:

a. To reorient working sales professionals to the common-sense fundamentals of all successful selling.

b. Provide new effective methods of applying this knowledge instantly.

The words, knowledge is power, from Sir Francis Bacon, still ring true today. But academic knowledge alone is not enough. Only when knowledge is put to use in the real world does it become real power.

This simple observation follows: Applied knowledge is superior power.

And this is what puts you on the path to consistent success in the sales profession.

Application of knowledge to practical purpose is the goal of all my writings to help you sell effectively, efficiently and effortlessly.

With twenty-five years of hands-on experience in direct and indirect sales experience, I can help you sell better and understand why it’s happening. And it doesn’t require an overhaul, just a precise tune-up that will open the door to gaining the results desired.

Sometimes a simple adjustment in the focus of your selling efforts can bring about enormous positive changes, but you have to know what to change and what to leave alone. I’m not trying to reshuffle the deck, just get you to use what you already know to better advantage.

For example, two of the most important steps in any improvement activity is to realize that there is something to learn and to sort out why you are learning it. You have to work out how to apply what you are learning.

It is my considered opinion that salespeople doing their job is what helps to help the manufacture, distribution, sale and consumption of the goods and services that we take for granted. My hat is off to every working sales professionals for the tireless job they do in making the “business of business” work.

My job is to make the subject of selling easier to understand and far more effective in getting results.

daniel w. jacobs
(c) 1998-2030, all rights reserved