Coach The Sale EP09 - How To Recruit A Great Fit Sales Team

Coach The Sale EP09 - How To Recruit A Great Fit Sales Team

How do you attract and recruit great fit candidates for sales roles? Today I'm speaking with Author, Speaker, Podcast Host, and Sales Trainer - Wes Schaeffer, The Sales Whisperer. 

We dive deep into how to attract, recruit and support the best sales talent for your organisation.

In this episode we cover:

[+] How Wes' time in the Airforce shaped his transition into working in Sales
[+] The importance of practice and mastering the basics to become more adaptable when selling
[+] The impact both a good and bad fit hire can make to a sales organisation
[+] Early indicators of good fit and bad fit candidates
[+] How Wes uses the content of job adverts and the recruitment process to screen out bad fit candidates
[+] Strategically using rejection in an interview as a way to gauge resilience
[+] The difference between product training and sales training
[+] Book recommendation, lots of sports analogies and much more

Listen To The Show:

Subscribe To The Podcast On:  iTunes | Pocket Casts | Spotify | Stitcher | TuneIn | Overcast

Links:

The Sales Podcast  |  Episode #200

Oren Klaff - Pitch Anything

Winning Through Intimidation - Robert Ringer

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Transcript

Matt: Wes, welcome to the podcast. How are you doing?

Wes: I'm good. How are you?

Matt: I am very well, really keen to talk to you. You're the host of a podcast like myself, so it's nice to speak to somebody also involved in podcasting. People may not have heard of you, though. In that case, just maybe a quick intro, who you are, and what you do.

Wes: Is that possible? Are there people that haven't heard of me? Come on, now.

Matt: No, no, no, probably not, but there may be-

Wes: All right-

Matt: ... one or two in the world who've not heard of you.

Wes: All right. I know, it is funny, right? We always see people in different events or whatever. "Oh, you've heard of this guy?" Nope, never heard of him. Like, I have 20 million followers on Instagram. Nope, I haven't.

Wes: Yeah. So I'm an Air Force veteran. Got out in 1997. And was in sales right off the bat. And did that for 10 years and got a crazy idea to start a sales training business. I had a coach of my own at the time. Came up with the name, The Sales Whisperer, and trademarked it. And kind of like the dog whisperer or the horse whisperer, somebody that helps the entity perform better. So Robert Redford, back in the day, the horse whisperer, got them to calm down. The dog whisperer, get their dogs to calm down. It gets the owners to be good owners. And I help salespeople and sales managers, help salespeople sell more, faster, at higher margin with less stress and more fun. I help sales managers learn how to lead.

Wes: Because a lot of them haven't been taught. They were aggressive, they were passionate, they were hustling as a salesperson, and so they were promoted. And now they're supposed to lead people, and they don't know what to do. And that's a problem.

Matt: Excellent. And we're gonna come on to that. Just so everyone's aware, we're gonna be especially on this episode talking a lot more about the recruitment, of getting the best candidates and getting the most of them as quickly as possible. But before we do, something in your backstory that caught my attention, I wanted to go back to it. So you were in the Air Force. How long were you in the Air Force for?

Wes: So I spent four years at the Air Force Academy in Colorado. So it's kind of like West Point, if you've heard of that, in New York. So four years there and then I was commissioned as an officer. And then I spent five years on active duty.

Matt: So I guess, one of the questions I've got off the back of that is how on Earth did you find the transition from the Air Force into sales? That must have been quite a journey. Just what were some of the things that you learnt along the way? I mean there must be so many things, but what stands out? And you mentioned a coach as well. I'm curious to know how that coach fitted into things, as well?

Wes: Yeah. So it was a tad bit interesting. But I had the bug. I had the entrepreneurial bug early on. Was investing in stocks and bonds with a buddy of mine while we were still in college. So I was money-motivated. I wanted to be paid according to my production, not just my time and grade. So having that drive really helped. I was interested in money. I got into the financial services world. They had a very rigorous training program. So I was introduced to that right off the bat. Second company I worked for had a very rigorous process. And it taught me early on the importance of following a process, of being a product of the product. So that helped lay the foundation.

Wes: I got into high tech right as the dot com bubble was bursting in 2000. But made a good bit of money in high tech. And that's when things began to kind of flounder. I didn't have great training. I had great product training. I did not have great sales training. And so I knew intuitively that things were not as efficient as they should be. I knew I wasn't as good as I could be. So I was buying books, I was going to courses and conferences, and that's when I stumbled across the guy that I eventually hired as my mentor and sales coach one-on-one. And then I became a licensee of his.

Wes: Just always being curious. And wanting to get better. I mean deep down, we all know if things just aren't right. You got a little voice. Maybe somebody taught you tactic or whatever. And it sounded good on stage, it looked good in a YouTube video, but in practice, it's just not quite the same. So listen to that little voice. And find a process, find a strategy that is congruent with how you wanna live and work. And once you find that, there's no stopping you.

Matt: So when you talk about process, some people might think, coming from a military background, it might be quite rigorous, quite robust, quite formulaic. Where does structure and process, how tight is that process for you?

Wes: That's one of the great misnomers in sales is that it's the art of the close and whatever. Look, people are very formulaic. People are very predictable. If I say, if we get on this interview, and I say, "Matt, your accent is crazy. I've never heard of a Brit with a good podcast. I'm doing you a favor by being on this show." You'd be like, "Who's this cheeky a-hole?" And you may continue to be polite, but in the back of your brain, you're probably gonna lose this episode. Oh, sorry, technical difficulties.

Wes: Conversely, if we get on and say, "I love England, I love Europe, I love England, I visited," which did back in November, spent a week with my son, seeing London, I went up to Stafford and had an authentic British Sunday roast, and it was fantastic. And I just talk about how wonderful it was, you're gonna have better feelings about me. Those are two big extremes, but in general, people are very predictable. And we can modify, and we should. We, as salespeople, have to adjust how we sell to match how our prospects buy.

Wes: And so by winging it, by hustling, by just having a good sense of humor, that's okay, but it's only gonna take you so far. What we don't realize, we watch celebrities, we watch The Rolling Stones perform, we watch in the US Tom Brady with the New England Patriots win six Super Bowls. And we see all the glorious stuff. But what we don't realize is The Rolling Stones and any performer, they practice, drill, and rehearse constantly. They script out what's the set? How are we gonna open? What's our encore? All that is scripted.

Wes: Yes, you see the highlight films of Tom Brady avoiding the tackle, the blitz, he avoids the sack, he scrambles, he throws side-arm across the field. And the guy makes this wonderful one-handed catch. Because he has practiced so much, when he needs to perform in an ad-hoc manner, he's able to. But the play wasn't drawn up that way, and the whole reason that even had to do that was because somebody probably messed up. Somebody didn't block the right person, somebody, the fundamentals broke down somewhere. But when you look at Tom Brady's history, he's not the tallest quarterback, he's not the fastest, he doesn't have the strongest arm. But he does the basics better than anybody.

Wes: So if you will master the basics, if you will have the discipline to document what those basics are and learn them, apply them, measure them, adjust accordingly, you'll beat 99.9% of everybody out there. And you'll be the best.

Matt: Fantastic. I think that's a nice segue into the main thrust of what we were gonna talk about today, and that's finding those people who maybe aren't at that stage right now but aspire to be. I guess first question then, really, is how much of a difference can a good or bad hire make, in your opinion, to the success of a sales organization?

Wes: Oh, yeah, one bad apple, right? Ruins the bunch. And it literally can. They're gonna come in, maybe they have a bad attitude and it's a cultural mis-hire, mis-fit. And they're gonna bring down the organization. Maybe they just don't have the abilities. They can't learn the product, they can't learn the process. So then the manager's constantly trying to help them or others that wanna help, they're compassionate, they're taking time away from what they're doing to help someone.

Wes: When I was in the Air Force, they taught us all types of survival. How to navigate the land, get water. And they taught us water survival. Because in case you're ever shot down or had a malfunction and you bail out over water. And the first thing they teach you, when you're going to rescue someone that's drowning, the very first thing they teach you is how to escape from a drowning victim. Because when you approach them, they're gonna cling to you, they're panicking. And they'll drown you and themselves.

Wes: So when, in sales, you got this organization, others ... Now most people don't know that. Most people will let themselves get tired out and you both drown. In sales, your top-performing salespeople, they wanna help this underperforming, "It's a good person. It's a really good guy, a really good gal, I really hate to see them struggling. Yeah, we don't really have a great training program. The managers are just, it's all about the quota, let me try to help this person." So now that top performer is not doing what they were hired to do. They're not making their sales. They're not making their numbers. What's the opportunity cost there?

Wes: So all around, it's a multiplying effect. And I've seen numbers that, somewhere between 3 and 10x of a salesperson's base salary is the impact of hiring, of making a bad hire. It's the time to screen, to advertise, to onboard, the lost opportunity cost, the training, the retraining, the putting them on notice. Then you gotta fire them and then there's worker's comp or unemployment you gotta pay. It's terrible.

Matt: When we're looking at good fit, bad fit, or good hires and bad hires, what are some of the early warning signs for you of a potential bad hire? And maybe on the flip side as well, what are some of the things that you're starting to look out for that are indicators that somebody might be a good hire?

Wes: Well in general, both when you're selling to a prospect and when you're hiring a prospective candidate, I think first you gotta start with a cultural fit. Do we like each other? Do we wanna work together? But most companies don't have great training, so they're gonna hire somebody based on their Rolodex. Just because they have great contacts. "I've been in the industry a long time." Or they got a degree from a great college. So okay, let's bring this person on. And those just don't cut it.

Wes: So is there a cultural fit? Do you all get along, and then do you as a sales manager, do you have a process to plug them into? So do you even know what that cultural fit is? Because you have to lay down the law in the beginning. You need to have a program. Going back to sports, in European football, or in American football, you've got teams with a certain approach. A certain attitude. Maybe the team is very aggressive. Both in pushing it up to try to score, and maybe even physically. You don't mind some yellow cards. You don't even mind some red cards every now and then. You're gonna let everybody know you're the toughest one, and you play us, get ready to bleed because we're playing tough.

Wes: Others may be more finesse. So that dictates who you recruit and bring on. Like hey, here's this great athlete. Yeah, but they're a finesse player, we're a physical team. They're not gonna fit into our scheme. Now maybe they are so good that you change your scheme, you change your approach. Yes, we're a physical team, we need this person, we're gonna be less physical. Or we'll let others be physical around him so he can do his thing. Okay, fine, but you need to know what your demeanor, your approach, your attitude is, in the beginning. And then you bring them on.

Wes: So let's say you're bringing them on because they are a fit, and then you tell them straight-up, this is how we roll. This is how we do things. You are expected to perform these activities. Are you okay with that? So you have to have that tough conversation early on before you ever hire them. But most don't.

Matt: What about before the interview stage, though? What about how you actually cast the net wide out into the ocean to find and find some of these people? Because I think sometimes the expectation is, well we'll put up a link ... Sorry, we'll put up an ad on LinkedIn, and we won't necessarily pay a lot of attention to the ad because we know we'll be flooded with candidates. We know there's gonna be a lot of people out there. It's an employers market. How important do you think the copy of the ad, trying to find those candidates is? And do you have any specific examples of ways of doing it that will improve the chances of a good fit prospect?

Wes: Yeah, I still believe content is king. And the ad is ... You don't wanna qualify your prospects, you want to disqualify them. So if you are a rowdy bunch, and go hard, maybe it's a boiler room, like you see in the classic movies, finances, Wolf of Wall Street. You can even put foul language in the ad. And so you won't attract the prim and proper. You will disqualify them in the beginning. Because you don't have time to talk to everybody. Because everybody sounds good on the phone. Everybody sounds good in person. Because they want that job. So you better be screening out people from the beginning. And you do that with the verbiage in your ad.

Matt: What I'm hearing you say is, in effect, identify what the style is of the organization, what the culture is of the organization. Be very clear about that and the gaps that you're looking to fill within that culture, and then let that culture come through in the ad copy so that people can be reading that and be left in no doubt of the type of organization, to use your analogy, the style of play. They know going into it that that's exactly what they can expect.

Wes: Right. But most people, they don't do it. They just, "Oh, he's really good. Oh, he's sold a lot at this other company. Let's go ahead and hire him." But just like investing in a mutual fund, past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Matt: So let's forward on in the process. Thinking about the interview in particular. If you were to design the ideal interview, what would make a great interview from your perspective? What would that look like from the outside?

Wes: So I start with the tough ad. So we're disqualifying there. Then if they pass the sniff test of that, I have clear instructions on how they even apply. So one of the things that I tell them I is I make them mail a physical copy of their resume to someone. Not me. It's gonna go to my assistant, it's gonna go to HR, somebody. And I tell them you can email an electronic version, do send it electronic so we can share it, but they have to mail a physical copy then they're allowed, three days later, to email or call to make sure we got it. Other than that, leave us alone. If we like you, we'll tell you what the next steps are.

Wes: So that will weed out another good chunk. Because there's a lot of people just sitting around not doing their job, just firing off their resume on somebody else's dime. But you'd be amazed at how few people are willing to spend 50 cents or a dollar to lick a stamp and print out a resume and mail it.

Wes: So we wrote a tough ad, that screened them out. Now they gotta mail it in, that screens out some more. So now, if they pass the sniff test, I have them call in for a 15 minute debrief. Because they're gonna have all these questions. That's where we're gonna answer some of your questions, we're gonna ask you some more questions. So that's the next step. And I tell them, pick your time. We do them Tuesday mornings and Thursday afternoons. So like anything, you wanna batch your efforts. You go to the grocery store, you don't go to one store for milk and then get in your car and drive across town and then go get eggs and then drive across town again for meat. You batch your efforts. And so you make them make time. You say this is a 15 minute window. If you're appointments at 9:00 am, you may dial in one minute early or one minute late. Other than that, you miss that window, then we're done. So can they make an appointment? Can they show up on time? Are they timely?

Wes: And so that's another screening. I'm putting so many barriers that the cream rises to the top. And especially, this is for sales. You're gonna treat an architect or an accountant differently, but I don't hire those people. I detailed out our salespeople. And so can they show up on time? And so when they do, then you have an assistant or someone kind of goes through the process with them. But again, they're not meeting the hiring manager. They're not meeting the boss yet. They haven't earned that right.

Wes: And so in that screening time, you're asking them some questions. You're trying to see if there's any gaps, if there's any discrepancies in what they've posted in their resume versus what you've found out about them online. Do they post stupid stuff online? And then how do they sound? And I recommend even doing a video. How do they conduct themselves? Are they jittery, are they nervous, are they confident? And then, quite often, in that session, I'll reject them. I'm gonna see how they handle it. Matt, we'll tell you thanks for taking the time. I'm just, based on what I'm hearing, I'm not really sure if Mr. Schaeffer is really gonna like you. I'm not sure you're really a fit for him." Just like happens on a cold call. I wanna see how do they handle that? "Oh, well, thanks for your time ... okay. Bye now." Let them go.

Wes: When people tell me I don't think Matt's really gonna like you, I'm gonna say, "What's wrong with Matt? What do mean he's not going to ... What is there not to like? Whoa, whoa, whoa, what is going on here?" I want them to push back a little bit. And again, they can do too much. "What the hell? Is he some kind of stupid idiot? Are you drunk? Do you have brain damage? Did you not get enough sleep?" Okay. That guy is done. Because you could be a little too aggressive. So I want to see is there some pushback? Do they have some pride? So if they pass that sniff test, then you schedule the real interview. And if they're too far away, maybe it's a phone call or video. Probably they're nearby, you're gonna want to meet them. So now you schedule them, they come in. If you go through that, you've got pretty good people at that point.

Matt: You're putting up barriers to in effect test the candidate against the criteria that you value as a company and you value as a manager. And seeing if they're prepared to push back a little bit and challenge what you're saying in an appropriate way.

Wes: Sure. Because that's what sales is, isn't it?

Matt: So let's fast-forward, then. Let's say we've identified the perfect candidate. Ramp times and onboarding seem to be the perennial issue for a lot of sales managers. How do you get new starters up to speed, becoming productive quickly? This is something that you train sales managers in all the time. Give us some of the tips that you would share with some of those people. How can we get new starters up to speed quicker and get them more productive quicker as well?

Wes: Yeah, so you need to have a good training program, but that good training program needs to be, if it's good it means it's focusing on the right things. And it's not product training. You could drop me in cold into just about any company anywhere and I could start setting appointments because I just know how to speak to people. And so in an ideal world, you know the buyer persona. You know the target industry. I used to sell for a startup in the computer industry. And we knew that hospitals, manufacturing facilities, financial services, and the military were ideal candidates for our solution. And I knew, let's say within healthcare, I had to talk to the CIO. I had to talk to the decision maker because our product was a lot more expensive than what we were replacing. But the ROI was still there. So just knowing that, like hey, Wes, you're brand new, look, we have lots of success with hospitals, you need to reach the IT director or the CIO. Go.

Wes: So I know in general what keeps those guys awake at night. Uptime, security, compliance. A handful of key things. And so you need to train your salespeople on why your ideal clients buy from you. And most really muddy this up. And it's not form-factor, it's not these physical things. But you gotta get to the intangibles to make yourself stand apart. Because what's the real difference between a BMW and a Mercedes? They have four wheels, they have engines, they have air bags on the side, in the front, and from the ceiling. Okay, great. Why should I buy the BMW over the Mercedes?

Wes: So that's where the magic happens. That's where you gotta teach your people. Most people don't. Now eventually you do need to learn about torque and horsepower and mileage and how the entertainment system works or how the Bluetooth connects. Because those can be intangibles. The navigation system is maybe more effective or more intuitive or easier to use. And that could be the deal breaker on a £70,000 sale. But it's the intangibles, I think, that you gotta nail down and convey to those people.

Wes: You get that right, they're gonna have more success quicker. But you gotta give them scripts. And when I was a salesperson, I pushed back on scripts, but the reason was they were just not good. They were robotic-sounding. But the reality is, we all live life on scripts. If you and I meet face-to-face, "Matt, so good to meet you. How are you today?" You're probably gonna say ...

Matt: I'm very well, thank you. And you?

Wes: Yep. "I'm fine. How's the weather out there? I was just in London and has spring finally sprung, or is it still a little cold there?" Right? We're gonna go back and forth. Isn't that a script? So people that say, "I don't want a script, it sounds too robotic, I just gotta go with it." Life is a stage. It's one big play. And how we engage matters. How we open matters. The words we use, the tonality, the volume, the intonations. You've gotta cover that with your people. And it goes back into how do you screen?

Wes: I'm looking for A-type personalities that will not take no for an answer. That will pick up the phone and call until they reach the person. But then, they will follow our proven processes, the exact scripts we have used to become a leader in our industry. If you can't get on board and follow the playbook, don't apply.

Wes: So I showed up, I said I could follow the rules, I will follow the playbook. Okay. I'm gonna follow your playbook, but you better have a damn good playbook for me. If I'm a fantastic quarterback, and the playbook is 99% run, I'm gonna be a little bummed. But if I knew that going in ... Now at the University of Alabama, if you follow American college football at all, they keep winning national championships, although Clemson is beating them up as well. But Alabama is in the Southeastern conference in the United States, a big, long history. Power football. Just hit each other in the mouth and who's the last one standing. And then Alabama got these fantastic quarterbacks. We're talking about how a team might change, Alabama changed. They became a passing team. Because they recruited these great quarterbacks.

Wes: But those quarterbacks knew going in they were being recruited by the best college football program in the nation, which was primarily a running offense. Not a passing offense. So they were willing to both work in that system but confident enough that hey, I'm pretty good, maybe they'll open things up for me. And they did. So do you have that script? Do you have that playbook? Is it proven so you can attract the best talent? And then you can give them a little bit of leeway to kind of let the art come out. But the art comes out within the confines of your system.

Matt: Where does coaching fit with all of this? It's good to have a style. It's good to have the playbook. But where does coaching fit in all of this? And how can someone ... Give us some pointers around coaching. Because I think that's something that is often missing from all of this. We hire great candidates. Maybe there are scripts or there are playbooks. But maybe the coaching isn't quite there. How important is coaching? And give us some pointers on what people can do to improve the quality of their coaching.

Wes: Yeah, so most sales managers, if they're honest with themselves, they probably haven't had a lot of sales coaching and they probably haven't had a lot of sales manager coaching. They were hustlers. Maybe at the business at a good time. They did well. They were promoted from within. So you'd recognize where you might be falling short and get better as a sales manager. And you need to recognize that you can't treat everyone the same. There was a football coach, he was Jimmy Johnson. He was big with University of Oklahoma, then he went down to Miami Dolphins. So when he was coaching in the professionals, he told the guys, I'm gonna treat all of you equally, but I'm gonna treat all of you differently. And so teaching professionals, coaching professionals, you have some superstars there, they may be 30, 35 years old. You may have brand new superstars right out of college, they're 22 years old. So you have a rookie versus someone that's been there 15 years. Maybe the guy that's been there 15 years, they're on the road, they don't need a curfew. They're adults. They're gonna do their thing. They're gonna show up and play.

Wes: Whereas you get a bunch of 22-year-old brand new millionaires, you tell them you're gonna be in at 11:00. If you're not in at 11:00, I'm gonna fine you and you won't start the game. He had to treat them differently. So you have to know how to treat your people. What resonates with each of them. What is the style? Now, they're still working within that game plan. That coach still has the play book and they're gonna execute to that. But they're treating them differently within it.

Wes: Most companies spend the bulk of their energy trying to get the turkeys to turn into eagles. And what I tell companies as well is that, just like in sports, you are always recruiting. Now it doesn't mean you're always hiring. But you're always recruiting. So when that is happening, when your company knows, when your salespeople know if they don't perform, they're fired, and they know that new talent is coming in, and you're constantly bringing in better and better people, those bottom performers are going to self-select and either ask for more help and listen and apply it or they're gonna leave on their own accord. That lets you focus on the good ones.

Wes: And typically, you say, "Well, he's really producing a lot, I'm just gonna get out of his way." That's fine to a degree, but even those top performers appreciate some help. Maybe you have three inside sales reps, or one inside sales rep for every three salespeople. Maybe this person is so good, maybe it's one inside sales for two salespeople. Maybe that sales rep gets their own inside salesperson.

Matt: Brilliant. Thanks, Wes. I'm curious. Slightly tangential to what we've just been talking about, but do you have any recommendations for sales books or things that have change your perspective when it comes to sales or have helped you on your journey to become who you are today?

Wes: Yeah. I mean there's so many. One that's made an impact recently is Oren Klaff's book Sell Anything. Really good guy. I had him on my podcast. I did a book review of his book, actually. He's out here in southern California, but he worked in high finance, like big deals, big business deals. Another, a guy named Robert Ringer, it's a little bit older book, Winning Through Intimidation. And it sounds like this really mean, brutal book.

Matt: Yeah, it does.

Wes: But it's not. And it's from things he was doing in '70s. He was in real estate and buying businesses stuff. But when you show up to a big company, they're intimidating you. Maybe you gotta check in with security first. Even to pull into the campus. And then there's a secure front desk and they gotta buzz you in. And then you gotta sign in. And sign all these wavers and NDA, then they give you a badge. Then they make you go sit in a corner till they come get you. That's all intimidation. The building itself. Big glass front and marble and mahogany desks. They're trying to intimidate you.

Wes: So the concept is, it's not to go be a meanie. I don't want you to be a bully. Don't be an ugly American. Show up, but understand the game. And understand how the prospect is trying to position themselves, and how you must outmaneuver them. And intimidation is a part of it. But the intimidation could be, maybe prices are going up at the end of the year, or the end of the quarter. Or maybe the new model is out and it's in limited production, so you gotta order sooner to get it. I mean all those things, people, we can parse the words, some may say it's semantics. But it's intimidation. It's persuasion. It's negotiation. But you need to understand how all that works.

Wes: So I read that book years ago and it opened my eyes on how things are done. So Oren Klaff is a relatively newer book from around 2010, I wanna say, 2008. Somewhere in there. Roberts is older. But I'm reading a lot of older books now. And realizing that there really is nothing new under the sun. There's a lot of repackaging. So go to the source when you can.

Matt: Yeah, we'll include links to both of those books in the show notes for the episode. So last question. Of all the work that you've done around sales and selling, if you could identify maybe one or two characteristics that, for you, have led you to be successful at what you do, what would they be? What are the characteristics, the two or three characteristics that stand out as things that have made the difference for you in your sales career and now as a sales trainer, sales coach?

Wes: Well, in the UK, have you all seen the classic movie, Glengarry Glen Ross, with Alec Baldwin, and he talks about the ABCs?

Matt: I love that film.

Wes: So I love it and I hate it.

Matt: Yeah, likewise. For probably similar reasons.

Wes: Yeah. And so I have never followed his definition of the ABCs of selling, always be closing. I have the new ABCs of selling, which are always be courteous. Always be curious. Now, it doesn't mean you're just learning for learning's sake, but I am curious about learning new things, but I'm also curious about the prospect. I don't just take it at face value, whatever they tell me, I dig in. "Yeah, we're looking at some better computers." "Why?" "Well they seem to be faster." "Why?" "Well, we're loading new software programs that take up more processing power." "Why are you doing that?" And it sounds crazy, but you gotta get to the heart of the matter. So always be curious. Always be courteous. Always be concise. Which sounds counter-intuitive for salespeople. But if I'm doing all of the talking, I'm losing. Then I don't know. I'm not curious. I haven't found out what's really going on. Now I have to make assumptions. So be concise, be courteous, be curious. Apply those for the ABCs. Stop worrying about the close. Learn to open relationships rather than close sales. And you're gonna have a great career in sales.

Matt: Fantastic. Brilliant. That's a nice segue as well, because I'm guessing that curiosity is probably one of the reasons why you've had the podcast and had it for so long. How many episodes are you up to now?

Wes: Over 363, somewhere in there. Lemme see. Today we'll publish 366.

Matt: Wow. Okay. So Wes, tell everybody how they can find out more about you, the podcast, and the work that you do.

Wes: The podcast is simply thesalespodcast.com. So that'll take you to my website. And you can subscribe there on iHeartRadio, iTunes, Google Play, Spotify. So I'm all the biggies. And that's also, it'll redirect you to my website, which is thesaleswhisperer.com. And everything's there. So then you can find me on social media. I'm very active, very accessible. I don't have VAs replying for me. So if you hear from me, it is actually me.

Matt: So if we were to listen to your podcast, we could listen to one episode per day for an entire year and still just about be left over with an episode or two. Point me in the direction of an episode, one or two episodes that for you are standout episodes. Ones that you're maybe most proud of or contain the most value. Where would you direct people to out of all of those 360-plus episodes? Where would you point them to first?

Wes: Go listen to Oren Klaff. My interview with him, he was a great guy, very open. Everybody's very open. I get nuanced things out of all of my guests. And then, go listen to number 200. I talk about my story and how things changed. So that could be illustrative for your listeners. There's a bunch of them.

Matt: There are. Brilliant. Wes, I really appreciate you taking the time out of your day to talk to me today. Thank you very much and really appreciate your time today.

Wes: Hey, my pleasure.

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