Sales Reinvented

We at Sales Reinvented are on a mission to change the negative perception of sales people. Each week we will be interviewing experts in the field of sales and sharing their knowledge, ideas and expertise with our listeners. They share with us in our vision of a world where selling is a profession to be proud of. The aim of our formatted show is to provide ‘snackable’ episodes that are short enough to listen to in one sitting but long enough to provide real value that will help you in your sales career. Welcome to the Sales Reinvented Podcast.
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At Sales Reinvented, we are on a mission to change the negative perception of selling. Welcome to the Sales Reinvented Podcast.

Nov 4, 2020

How do you save time, get results, and avoid burning your lists? How do you get results from cold emails? Kim Albee believes that it’s by knowing your perfect potential customer and providing them value. In this episode of the Sales Reinvented podcast, she shares her expertise in prospecting and lead generation. Don’t miss it!

Kim Albee founded her company Genoo, as well as the B2B Online Marketing Group on LinkedIn. Kim helps you attract quality leads, and establish the engagement necessary for sustained growth. She does this by providing practical strategies and integrated tools that maximize resources, energy, and return on investment. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:56] The difference between prospecting and lead generation
  • [1:39] Why are these concepts important?
  • [2:08] Know your perfect potential customer
  • [4:11] The attributes a salesperson should embrace
  • [5:16] Skills that a salesperson should develop
  • [6:56] Kim’s 3 prospecting and lead generation dos and don’ts
  • [8:46] Kim’s favorite prospecting + lead gen story

Successful lead generation = knowing your perfect potential customer

Kim believes that prospecting is looking for your perfect fit. Ideally, your perfect fit is a buying opportunity—they’re at the bottom of the funnel. Lead generation is where you’re getting your perfect potential customers anywhere in the funnel. You’re generating and attracting them to you through a variety of different mechanisms. 

Kim notes that at Genoo, they are always building relationships and engagement with their perfect potential customers. One of the biggest mistakes that Kim sees people make is sending cold emails. Instead of sending cold emails, you should provide real value. That means taking a marketing approach to build leads and engagement. You respond in a way that deepens the relationship and builds authority. 

Give your leads bite-sized chunks and lead them a step at a time through the buying journey while building trust. You can use any kind of lead gen to do this.

Pay attention to digital body language

Kim notes that listening is a great attribute—as well as paying attention. It’s great to have a conversation and listen more than you talk. But in the online world, you also have digital body language to go off of. What are they clicking on? What are they looking at? What are they interested in? 

You should send out value emails and then track these things. If you listen well to those metrics and respond appropriately, you can give them the messages you know will resonate. You’ll hit with a lot more of them. When you reach out for a call at that point, they know who you are and will more readily take your call.

Skills that a salesperson should develop

In every sales job, Kim points out that there’s a certain amount of going after a goal. You think the path from A to B is a straight line—but Kim disagrees. She believes the path is varied, that it isn’t linear. You need to have really good materials and understand your perfect potential customer. What are the different concerns that they have? How can you satisfy them? There are different routes through that conversation that you should have ready. 

You need to work with marketing and put together how you move people through the buying process. How does that mesh with the conversations you’re going to have? You have to pay attention to what your prospects and leads most need. What is most relevant and valuable to them? Help them move towards that and build trust and credibility. 

What to do when cold outreach fails

Kim had a customer that was using a cold email strategy. They bought a list of 14,000 potential customers. Of the 14,000 cold emails they sent, they only booked 62 meetings at a 0.4% conversion rate—meaning only 8 of those 62 meetings qualified. Their qualification rate was 12.9%. They were burning through lists.

When they bought the next list, Kim asked for a chunk of the leads so she could show them a better strategy. They gave her 350 of the next 14,000 leads. So her team sent out marketing emails that added value for their perfect potential customers. They got an 18% open rate on their emails and booked 20 meetings. They qualified 10 of those meetings—a whopping 50% qualification rate. They qualified more leads with their 350 than the 14,000 other emails that went out.

They took the 14,000 emails that hadn’t generated any leads and tried to give them value, but they couldn’t. Once you burn them, there’s no going back. Kim notes that the goal is to “Provide valuable, relevant content for the leads to engage in, and then follow up appropriately.” 

Providing value matters AND it works. Good content and understanding your perfect potential customer is the key to success. Sales messages don’t provide any value. They’re designed for the bottom of the funnel. But marketing messages share value while sharing, relating, and engaging. You’re hitting the top and middle of the funnel and engaging in a long-term strategy. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Kim Albee

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Oct 28, 2020

What is the difference between prospecting and lead generation? How are they similar? How do your strategies need to vary with either approach? In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Bill McCormick shares some strategies to help salespeople nail lead generation and prospecting. If you’re ready to take your skills to the next level—don’t miss this episode. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:35] The difference between prospecting and lead generation
  • [3:00] Why is lead generation and prospecting important to sales?
  • [3:39] The ideal prospecting and lead generation process
  • [7:08] The attributes a salesperson needs to embrace to find success
  • [8:19] Ditch the pitch: learn to provide both value + insight
  • [11:01] Bill’s top 3 dos and top 3 don’ts
  • [13:35] Bill’s story that proves timing really is everything

WHY a prospect and a lead are so different

Bill points out that lead generation and prospecting are both activities that you do. They can be very similar in that respect. But a prospect and a lead are quite different. A lead is someone at the tip of the funnel that’s not yet qualified. They may not even end up being a part of the sales process. A prospect is someone who has been qualified. They’ve made it into the funnel. The bottom line? All prospects are leads but not all leads are prospects. 

Bill also points out that lead gen happens very early in the process. It’s being able to take a quick look at someone—and based on your ideal client profile—determine if they’re going to make it into the prospecting category. Lead generation is all about lead qualification. Prospecting is about researching and moving the prospect along to the end goal of a sales conversation. 

The ideal prospecting and lead gen process

Bill is quick to note that each sale in each industry can be different. But he shares some key components anyone can focus on:

You must cultivate an ideal client profile: You need to have an idea of who you’re looking for. It will either help you qualify and move leads forward—or discard them. Once they’ve been moved into the prospect category, you must then determine the “who” and the “how.” The “who” is composed of the decision-makers. 

Secondly, you need to focus on how you will authentically nurture the relationship with a prospect to move them along your funnel to a sales conversation. When people are prospecting on LinkedIn, they are starting with sales conversations. Bill emphasizes that you can’t do that. What do you do instead? Ditch the pitch

Ditch the pitch: provide value and insight

Bill shares another solid piece of advice: ditch the pitch. Bill leads by providing value and insight to nurture someone along the sales funnel. Don’t lead with your solution—lead to it. He notes that it’s hard to do because you believe in your product and service. But when you pitch, you sound like the adults in a Charlie Brown cartoon. No one listens. 

He was recently on a call with a prospect and shared some insight with him. His prospect said, “Hey, you better stop, you’re giving away too much.” But that’s exactly the way Bill wants it. He responded by saying, “Imagine what you’re gonna get from us when you’re working with us.”

Bill goes on to say, “Remember the end goal is to have a sales conversation. We have to earn the right to have that conversation by providing value‚and not by pitching.” Bill shares some of the key attributes he believes a salesperson needs to succeed with lead generation and prospecting. Listen to learn what those are!

Bill’s top 3 lead generation and prospecting dos and don’ts

Bill summarizes his top do’s and don’ts for everyone to follow to find success: 

  • Connect on LinkedIn with ALL of your clients. It makes for great prospecting potential down the road. 
  • Make sure you have nailed down an ideal client profile and understand that everyone can’t be your ideal client. You’ll hit your best batting percentage when you’re swinging at the right prospects.
  • Make sure you develop a way to nurture your prospects without pitching to them. How do you provide value and insight at each point of the funnel?
  • Don’t use the LinkedIn Connect button as a cold outreach tool. If you pitch the whole way it falls flat. 
  • Don’t think in terms of closing a sale. You don’t want commission breath. Think in terms of having a conversation.
  • Don’t rush the process. Timing is everything. If we focus on valuable and insightful conversations, the sales will come when the time is right. 

Bill shares a poignant story to drive his last point home—don’t miss it. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Bill McCormick

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Oct 21, 2020

Many people are familiar with the concept of time pressure as a negotiation tactic—but what about allowing time to lapse as a tool? How does the passage of time sway a negotiation and become a powerful tactic? In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Jodi Cahn shares this powerful negotiation tactic and many others, including understanding and addressing a counterparty’s core needs. 

Jodi is an experienced negotiation trainer and has taught KARRASS® Effective Negotiating for 20 years around the globe. On top of being a practice negotiation trainer, she is a Sales Representative with Solar Energy Partners in California. Don’t miss this insightful episode! 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:41] What is negotiation?
  • [2:20] Why is negotiation important in business?
  • [3:17] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate?
  • [4:58] Jodi’s negotiation process
  • [7:16] Patience truly is a virtue
  • [8:37] Negotiation tools, tactics, strategies
  • [9:51] Top 3 dos and don’ts
  • [11:51] Jodi’s favorite negotiation story

View negotiation as the beginning of a relationship

Negotiation is an exchange where two parties both want in, but there’s a gap that must be closed. It is about an exchange of values. There has to be a give and take piece to it. It is a critical part of business. 

“In business as in life—you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate,” — Chester L. Karass

Jodi points out that we’ve got to be able to defend our interests and participate creatively in the give and take process. Nobody likes it when one side wins. Both parties have to be satisfied for successful relationships to be built that will last long-term and be fruitful. So you must be creative and adaptable.

Negotiation is a competitive game and in any competitive game, you make moves and countermoves. So you have to recognize tactics and be able to counter them. But you have to learn to move outside of the game and into a cooperative approach to build a relationship. 

Understand the other party’s core needs

Jodi emphasizes that you need to think about the needs of the other party that may not be obvious to you at the outset of the negotiation process. Be creative and listen deeply to address the unspoken needs of the other party—and address them before the other party does. The better you understand their needs and the more specifically you can address them, the more likely it is that they’re going to feel taken care of by you. It forms trust in you when they feel heard by you and they’re willing to be flexible with you in return.

She shares the 10 core needs that you can focus on: financial needs, time, avoiding risk, satisfying organizational demands, avoiding extra costs, convenience, growth potential, reducing aggravation, status, and satisfaction with the deal. It has to do with something called psychological reciprocity. There's a level of psychological reciprocity that takes place between people when they feel heard and appreciated. You want to keep the negotiation in that framework and keep the relationship healthy. 

One of the benefits you gain when you focus on and address their core needs? You’re limiting the other party’s options—but only if you can address those needs better than someone else can. Limiting their options gives you power in the negotiation.

The importance of the passage of time

Jodi shares some important attributes a great sales negotiator encompasses. One of them is the ability to be patient and realize that time is your friend. Our culture in the West is in such a hurry all the time. The benefit Eastern cultures have over us is their use of time. They aren’t rushing to get things done. Jodi so poignantly states, “With the passage of time, information surfaces. With the passage of time, the relationship deepens. With the passage of time, people become flexible.” The ability to be patient is critical—but often overlooked. Jodi shares a well-thought list of negotiation dos and don’ts that will leave you inspired, so keep listening. 

Time as a negotiation tool

Before Jodi became a negotiation trainer, she was in the film business. She and her partner had a script that we wanted to produce and were negotiating a deal with Lionsgate in the UK. When Jodi saw the terms they were offering, she thought they were absolutely terrible. She didn’t want to respond to it. In fact, the agreement was so one-sided that she chose not to respond

After three weeks, Lionsgate called and asked for a response. Jodi couldn’t give in, she didn’t know how to respond. They waited for a total of three months. After three months, Lionsgate realized she wasn’t going to respond. What happened? They came back and offered a much better deal to move the film forward. 

Jodi corrected the power balance through the use of time and got a deal she was happy with. The moral of the story? Time is a powerful negotiation tool.

Resources and People Mentioned

Connect with Jodi Cahn

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Oct 14, 2020

In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Philip Brown shares a few unique negotiation tactics and strategies that any negotiator can add to their skill set. Negotiation can be an uncomfortable process for salespeople, but if you employ some of the tactics Philip shares, you’ll be well on your way to becoming more comfortable with the process. 

Philip Brown is the inventor of Negotiation Cards® and the founder and creator of The Negotiation Club Ltd. His vision is to help businesses hone their negotiation skills through Practical Practice Workshops—with the end goal to increase revenue, boost profits & improve services. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:51] Negotiation is problem-solving with a twist
  • [1:26] The importance of negotiation 
  • [2:01] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate?
  • [3:01] Philip’s negotiation process
  • [4:32] Attributes of a sales negotiator
  • [5:17] Negotiation tactics, tools, and strategies
  • [6:36] Top 3 negotiation dos and top 3 don’ts
  • [8:49] Phil’s favorite negotiation story

Problem-solving—with a twist

Philip sees negotiation as a problem-solving process, with a twist: “It's all about solving blockers and barriers to an agreement which could be on the table, but the twist to it is that although you're problem-solving, you're also trying to maximize your value from that agreement.” Negotiation is also a unique skill set that is important to the business. If an agreement doesn’t deliver a net benefit, then you’re in a weaker position than when you started. Negotiation skills are paramount to ensuring you’re always on the growth side of the equation.

A procurement perspective on negotiation tactics

From the procurement side of things—where Philip’s viewpoint is from—the first thing you do to prepare for a negotiation is to understand the specifications of what you want. Then look at market information and build an agenda you follow through the entire negotiation process. Continue to build specifications with internal stakeholders and understand their boundaries, who the decision-makers are, and what the approval process is. Philip points out that learning to properly use an agenda is imperative. You need to have an agenda from the very beginning and be updating it constantly throughout the negotiation 

Philip’s negotiation do’s and don’ts

Philip emphasizes some things that successful negotiators do:

  1. Practice: Practice your negotiations outside of the actual real-world negotiation. You will never come across a football, baseball, or basketball team at the top of their game that hasn’t practiced. Why is that any different to negotiation as a skill? 
  2. Always consider the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’: Consider why certain wording is being used and how someone’s body language reflects a response to the question you put forward. 
  3. Active Listening: Active listening is a fundamental attribute and skill. It’s about employing the proper questioning techniques and trying to understand the reasoning behind what’s being said. 
  4. Reflect: Take time to reflect and consider what’s happened throughout the negotiation. 

Philip believes that every single person has a different negotiation style. A ‘don’t’ for him may not be a don’t for everyone else, nor always the right thing to do in a negotiation. But one ‘don’t’ he recommends you don’t get emotional unless it’s on purpose.

Negotiation tactics: Throw out an odd number

Philip has a friend who’s an independent truck driver. He’s an exceptionally well deliverer of service and always reliable and trustworthy. Because of this, he was always paid more than the rest of the agency drivers. But then the firm increased the rates of all of the other agency drivers so their rates matched. 

There was only one other driver who had been receiving a higher rate. The first man went to the agency and expressed his frustration. He asked for a higher rate and was turned down. Philip’s friend then went to the firm to discuss the issue. He was persistent with his request for a higher rate based on his experience. 

The hiring agency asked if he’d split the difference with them and threw out a nice even number somewhere in the middle. Normally, Philip’s friend would’ve accepted the request. However, he decided to try a different tactic—and threw out an odd number that was slightly higher (and benefited him). The hiring manager was thrown off and agreed to the higher odd number

Philip’s friend was tenacious and continued negotiating through discomfort. He wasn’t afraid to test a new tactic—and it paid off. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Philip Brown

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Oct 7, 2020

How is negotiation a problem-solving process? What is the best way for a salesperson to approach a negotiation? Susan Borke emphasizes that negotiation is a problem-solving opportunity that arises anytime someone makes a request. And there are a lot of requests that come up in business—between vendors, suppliers, clients, and even internally within your organization. You have to learn how to handle those requests in a way that is beneficial to each party. Susan shares her thoughts on the problem-solving process that is negotiation in this episode of Sales Reinvented. Don’t miss it! 

Susan Borke is the owner and Principal of BorkeWorks and has been teaching negotiating techniques for over 25 years. With a background in legal and financial administration, she has managed departments and divisions that included attorneys, paralegals, and other business professionals. She understands the needs of C-level executives and their employees as well as the pressures faced by creative professionals and entrepreneurs.

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:09] What is negotiation?
  • [1:28] Why is negotiation important? 
  • [1:54] Salespeople don’t like to negotiate—why?
  • [2:56] Susan’s negotiation process
  • [5:03] The attributes of a great sales negotiator
  • [6:11] Why you must calculate the BATNA for both parties
  • [9:46] Top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [11:55] Favorite negotiation story

Viewing negotiation as a problem-solving process

Susan embraces the mindset that negotiation is a problem-solving process. She points out that an effective resolution solves all or most of your problems and all or most of your counterparty’s problems too. To achieve the result that you want—which is maximizing what everyone gets out of it—Susan employees a two-phase problem-solving process that provides a roadmap that is effective in any negotiation:

  • Negotiation Readiness: This is the work you do by yourself to prepare for the negotiation. It consists of research, rehearsal, and review. 
  • Negotiation Resolution: This is the work you do when you're engaging with your counterparty in any way. It may be in-person, over the phone, a video call, or email. This process consists of regulating your emotion, relating to them, and responding accordingly.

If you’re in the midst of a negotiation you need to be able to regulate your emotions. If you’re surprised or caught off guard by what someone says, how do you regain your footing? How do you diffuse the situation when emotions get heated? You must know your buttons as well as strategies to address situations when they arise

Sales and negotiation skills go hand in hand

Salespeople often get anxious when they get to the negotiation part of the sales process. They fear hearing the word “no” or failing to negotiate effectively for their interests. Susan points out that many of the skills that serve successful salespeople are useful in negotiating. It all comes down to your mindset. Salespeople need to modify their mindset about negotiation. They need to employ new tactics but realize things that they already do can also be effective when they negotiate. Susan points out that “It becomes a virtuous cycle of being able to be more effective when they negotiate, achieving success, and then doing the same thing again.

She also emphasizes that anyone can learn the skills to be an effective salesperson and an effective negotiator. The skills ARE transferable. At the end of the day, it’s about doing your homework—and listening attentively. Once you interact with your counterparty, the key is to listen more than you talk. You want to genuinely seek to understand what your counterparty is saying they need. You also want to be alert to what is going unsaid and be comfortable with silence. It comes down to creating a relationship of integrity and trust.

BATNA: Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement

One key element of preparation is to understand what each part will do if they fail to reach an agreement. You must calculate the best alternative to a negotiated agreement, AKA—your plan B. You must engage in this thought experiment for yourself AND the other party. Susan believes it gives you an incredible amount of leverage. Not only does it illustrate that you've been thinking about them, but it also gives you a chance to weaken their BATNA. 

Perhaps a sales manager has a reputation for giving an extra discount to an unhappy prospective client just to make the deal happen. A sales team who knows about his situation can go to them in advance. They can share the parameters with the sales manager and make sure he or she is willing to back them up. Or they agree that the sales director WILL grant a discount but it’s a pre-agreed upon amount that is part of the strategy. You want to make sure you aren’t losing your commission and the organization doesn’t lose profit. 

A negotiation story: Two children—one orange

Susan asks you to imagine a situation where you have two children and one orange (the children are NOT siblings). They both want the orange. How do you resolve the problem? Most people say the answer is easy: “Cut the orange in half.” So one child takes her half, peels it, and eats the meat. The other takes the peel and uses the zest and throws away the meat. 

Each child lost half of what they wanted.

Instead, you must start the problem-solving process by taking the time to ask, “What are you planning to do with the orange?” This allows you to gather the information that enables you to give each party 100% of what they want. Susan points out that you can get so fixed on where you want to end up that you fail to see the needs we're actually trying to satisfy. 

To hear more of Susan’s sage advice o n the negotiation problem-solving process, listen to the whole episode of Sales Reinvented! 

Connect with Susan Borke

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Sep 30, 2020

Do you know negotiation techniques you can apply in any given situation? What strategies and tactics should you employ—or leave in the dust? Santino Pasutto is my guest in this episode of Sales Reinvented. He shares the challenges you face in the negotiation process, how to prepare, and some dos and don’ts of upmost importance. Don’t miss this episode focused on negotiation techniques!

Santino ‘Tino’ Pasutto is the Senior Vice President of Strategic and Commercial Development at Optimum Talent. He is a skilled sales and negotiation leader with 15+ years in business management. Tino is known by customers for his strategic approach to uncovering opportunities and helping them understand business issues that once addressed will allow them to improve their competitiveness. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:45] What is negotiation?
  • [1:05] Why is it so important?
  • [1:28] Why do salespeople HATE negotiation?
  • [2:51] Santino’s negotiation process
  • [4:39] Empathy is more important than ever
  • [5:46] Negotiation techniques to embrace
  • [7:23] Tino’s top 3 dos and don’ts
  • [10:35] Favorite negotiation story

The challenges within a negotiation

Both parties in a negotiation have shared and opposing interests. The goal of a negotiation is to narrow the gaps between those opposed interests and understand each other’s perspectives to come to an agreement. Tino is careful to note that win-wins aren’t always achievable. But the more you can understand the other person’s point of view, the easier it is to agree.

Another challenging factor for salespeople is that negotiation is an under-trained skill. But you CAN learn, hone, and develop negotiation techniques until you’re skilled. Tino notes that on top of poor training, salespeople probably have an unhealthy sales funnel that stems from poor targeting. Opportunities may be forced and they’re put in a position where they constantly have to negotiate and it’s a price battle. A lot of that stems from prospects that don’t align with your value proposition. 

Over-prepare for the negotiation 

Tino notes that salespeople tend to go in underprepared. But he believes it’s far better to err on the side of being over-prepared—and it’s the first of the negotiation techniques you should employ. Do what you can to gather customer research online, through social media, or LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Extensively research and understand your cost model and your margins and what levers you can pull on. Understanding your numbers helps you understand your walk-away point. 

Another tip? Don’t fall in love with the deal because you’ll probably overpay. Tino emphasizes that this is why discovery meetings are so critical. It allows you to gather information on how to position your service relative to the opposing organization’s challenges and issues. You then position your offering and reaffirm your value proposition throughout the negotiation. 

Don’t devalue your position

Santino implores salespeople: do not deal in maybes. Say “Yes, we can offer that” or “No, we can’t.” Avoid saying “let me check with my boss.” Why? Because it really devalues your position in the negotiation. If you’re waffling on your responses, the person on the other side of the table then realizes that you’re NOT the decision-maker. They’ll keep asking for more, keep pushing back, and it spirals downward. Don’t compromise your position.

You can avoid wishy-washy responses by utilizing negotiation techniques such as scenario planning and determining questions they may ask ahead of time. Plan it out so you don’t have to think on the fly. Tino notes that it’s also important that you be in alignment with your team before you walk in the door. You can’t pass notes under the table during a negotiation. You’ve got to know what the person next to you is thinking and how each of you will respond to questions that arise.

Negotiation techniques: Tino’s dos and don’ts

Tino shares that you must know the customer’s problems and how to address them tangibly. How do you make your value proposition tangible so they can compare you with other vendors? It helps you earn credibility going into the conversation. To do so, you need to be inquisitive and ask great questions. 

Why is a term or clause important? Why do they value it? Are they asking just to ask? Or is there a misunderstanding between parties? Uncover the entire iceberg. The more you can uncover their problems by asking intelligent questions the more you can understand—and reach your desired outcome. 

Ultimately, you want to have a healthy sales funnel so you CAN walk away from poor deals that don’t make sense. Salespeople don’t always think about the fact that opportunities outside of your current negotiation make a positive contribution to the process. You also have to know the math inside and out and know your walkaway point. Lastly, make sure your entire negotiation team is in alignment.

To hear Tino discuss his favorite negotiation techniques in detail, listen to the entire episode of the Sales Reinvented podcast! 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Santino Pasutto

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Sep 23, 2020

Why should you build options into your negotiation? How do different options influence the potential customer towards making a deal? Does it cheapen your service offering? Sheila Heen joins this episode of the Sales Reinvented podcast to share her take on the negotiation process—and why she believes presenting the customer options can be a gamechanger. 

Sheila Heen has taught negotiation at Harvard Law School for 20+ years. She is the founder and CEO of Triad Consulting. She also co-authored two New York Times bestsellers: Difficult Conversations: How To Discuss What Matters Most and Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well. Take advantage of her years of experience in negotiation and learn from the best—listen now! 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:18] Sheila’s Introduction
  • [0:57] What is negotiation?
  • [1:16] Why is negotiation so important?
  • [1:30] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate?
  • [3:50] Sheila’s negotiation process
  • [7:08] Attributes that make a great sales negotiator
  • [9:43] Tools, tactics, and strategies
  • [11:14] Top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [15:11] Favorite negotiation story 

Salespeople don’t want to strain the customer relationship

According to Sheila, a negotiation is any interaction you’re having with someone where you’re hoping to influence them—or maybe they influence you. It’s the way decisions get made. The better you are at it the more you learn and the more influence you have. Salespeople struggle with negotiation because it takes their relationship with a customer and strains it. Why?

You’re trying to build a relationship with the people you’re going to serve. You’re learning about their challenges and how you can support what they’re trying to accomplish—then it gets handed to procurement. Suddenly, we have disconnected the negotiation from the underlying needs and it becomes ALL about price. It can feel stressful. 

Even worse—in your discomfort—you can give in to their asks. Every time you give in, you’re teaching them how to negotiate with you.

Understand your customer’s sphere of influence

Sheila believes you need to understand the client’s challenges. What are they trying to accomplish? What have they tried already? What has or hasn’t worked in the past? Who are they trying to influence internally? What else is on their mind? Who do they have to negotiate with to get a green light on this?

Who are the key stakeholders who—if they really buy into what you’re doing—are going to be their biggest advocates? It doesn’t always align with whoever has the official job titles. You must listen to find out who the decision-makers are in their world. You must equip your counterpart to be prepared for the internal negotiations they’ll have with those influencers. Sheila points out that “The success of my negotiation hinges on the success of their negotiations.”

Why you NEED to build options into your negotiation

Another tip that Sheila shares is that you must listen carefully for the language and vocabulary that your counterpart uses internally. Incorporate everything you’ve learned into your proposal—using their own terminology that’s familiar to them. Secondly, you must create different budget options for them in the proposal. For example:

  • Option A: Accomplishes everything you want to accomplish at a certain price point. 
  • Option B: Accomplishes most of what you want to accomplish with more risk, with someone you don’t know, etc. but potentially at a more affordable price.

By having a couple of options that test the waters, it actually flushes out they're real interests and constraints. Presenting them with options also gives them an out—if we are going to save some money, what are the tradeoffs? Make it a joint problem for both of you to solve. Perhaps you can’t deliver the same thing for less, but you can work together to deliver as much value as possible for their investment.

Negotiating this way helps them feel like they have the autonomy to choose the best fit for them. They always know more about their context and the reactions that they're going to get in their internal conversations than you do.

A great sales negotiator is a great listener

Sheila emphasizes that the ability to listen is the most important attribute a salesperson can have. She’s recently talked to a vendor about a platform to use for the upcoming school year. The vendor didn’t ask her a SINGLE question. She didn’t ask questions about Sheila’s class, what she was concerned about, or what she needed

Instead, the saleswoman immediately launched into showing her the features of the platform. It didn’t inspire a lot of confidence. Even just five minutes of asking questions about Sheila’s needs and concerns—followed by the same presentation—would have yielded dramatically different results. What a missed opportunity

Sheila shares her favorite tools, tactics, and strategies AND her top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts plus her favorite negotiation story. This episode is packed full of useful information—don’t miss it!

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Sep 16, 2020

Do you know how to use leverage in negotiation? Or are you afraid to come across as demanding, therefore harming your relationship with a prospect? Today’s guest on the Sales Reinvented podcast—Steve Hall—shares how you can use leverage in negotiation that creates a mutually beneficial outcome for all sides. 

Steve is the Managing Director of Executive Sales Coaching of Australia and is recognized as Australia's leading authority on selling at sea level. He is a member of the Sales Experts Channel and has been a finalist in several categories in the Top Sales World Awards. Don’t miss out on his expertise in negotiation—listen now!

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:50] Steve’s definition of negotiation
  • [1:18] Negotiation plays an integral part
  • [1:36] Common fears around negotiation
  • [2:51] Steve’s negotiation process
  • [4:15] Attributes of a successful negotiator
  • [5:55] Negotiation tactics to leverage
  • [10:07] Top 4 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [13:01] How to use leverage in negotiation 

The power dynamic in negotiation

Negotiation is an important part of life. It’s also an integral part of the entire selling and business process. With it being such a normal part of our existence, why do salespeople hate it so much? Steve believes that salespeople want to be liked and prefer not to make demands of people. They’re afraid to negotiate because they’re afraid they will lose the deal. They have this faulty belief that the customer has all of the power and leverage in negotiation. This belief stems from a complete lack of formal negotiation training for salespeople. Of course they don’t like it, because they don’t understand it. And you fear what you can’t understand

Level the playing field with research

Steve emphasizes negotiation preparation begins with: research, research, research. You must understand what your outcome is, and what you’re trying to achieve. It’s not typically about money and usually other factors are involved. It isn’t just making a sale or completing a contract—but an outcome that works for both sides. What is their desired outcome? What are they trying to achieve? Who are you talking to—procurement? Or are you negotiating with the CEO? 

The key is knowing what you want, knowing what they want, and anticipating what they might demand and ask for. Anticipate what you can offer. Having things ready increases the chance of leveraging the negotiation and getting what you want while giving the other person what they want. You must also remember, If you’ve been dealing with someone 6–12 months, they have skin in the game, too.

Negotiation tactics used on both sides of the table

Steve sold software in the 90s and his customers would often delay their decision-making when they were nearing the end of the year. They knew if they delayed long enough they had the potential to squeeze in some year-end deals. Conversely, if the other party has a strong deadline they have to meet—and you don’t—it’s negotiation leverage in your favor. Another tactic you can use to leverage the negotiation? Get your counterpart to agree to a small decision. This increases the likelihood that they’ll commit to a larger decision down the road. 

The power of leverage in negotiation 

Steve references a TV Show called Black Books (about a bookshop in England) to drive home his point about properly using leverage in a negotiation. In an episode of the show, a customer comes up to the counter and says “This book is being sold for 5 pounds, can I have it for 4 pounds?” The owner acquiesces—but tears out the last chapter before selling it to the customer. The next day, the customer comes back and says “I’ve got to know what happens!” and the bookshop owner says “Sure! Give me twenty pounds.” He had all the leverage on his side, and the customer had no choice but to comply. 

Steve shares another story from a move two years ago. He moved houses and had to get his phone reconnected. He went to the phone company and was trying to set it up, but also wanted to set up streaming services. They said they couldn’t set it up immediately as he had requested because the phone wasn’t connected—but they’d send the box two weeks later because “It was their policy.” He asked to speak to a supervisor and was still turned down. 

So he went online and found an article in which the Managing Director of Customer service was interviewed. The article was all about how they had transformed their customer service and were customer-focused. Their main motto was “Yes we can.” So he called customer service again and mentioned he was writing an article about their customer service. He pointed out that the article the Managing Director was interviewed in didn’t meet the reality he was facing. He allowed them to respond—and they sent him the box and the service was active shortly after. 

He created leverage by using their own words to his favor and he got exactly what he wanted. The moral of the story? Always find leverage in negotiation.

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Steve Hall

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Sep 9, 2020

Intellectual curiosity is a curiosity that leads to the acquisition of knowledge. The intellectually curious have a deep and authentic need to understand the world and the people around them. In this episode of the Sales Reinvented podcast, Mike Macchiarelli shares how intellectual curiosity influences the negotiation process. Don’t miss this episode!

Mike Macchiarelli has over ten years’ experience in B2C selling as a salesperson, trainer, and manager. During his time with Equinox—a global luxury-lifestyle fitness brand—he won numerous awards and has helped to train over 1,000 salespeople. He also is well known for his online blog, Saving Face, where he writes about sales, negotiation, and leadership.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:52] Negotiation is reaching a mutual agreement
  • [1:09] Business at its most basic is an exchange
  • [1:41] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate?
  • [3:09] Mike’s negotiation process hinges on flexibility
  • [4:52] A great salesperson must have intellectual curiosity 
  • [5:50] A strategy Mike uses to bring curiosity into the equation
  • [7:34] Mike’s top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [9:40] What the Cuban Missile Crisis teaches us about negotiation 

Flexibility in negotiation is imperative 

The biggest hurdle to overcome in the negotiation process is preparation. Mike sets aside time in his calendar to prepare on paper, to think through what is about to happen and strategically formulate his approach. But Mike points out that no matter how strategic or well-crafted your approach is, you have to be prepared to change it throughout the negotiation. 

It’s a journey with different stages and you have to be flexible. You have to mentally prepare to go back and forth 5-8 times (or more) and adapt your strategy along the way. One of Mike’s favorite approaches is from Michael Wheeler’s book ‘The Art of Negotiation’. In its simplest form, you must: learn, adapt, and influence. Keep listening to hear more about his approach! 

Intellectual curiosity is the key to successful negotiations

Mike emphasizes that a salesperson at his or her core needs to be curious. Curiosity trumps all. The entire sales and negotiation process is a process of exploration and discovery. You must have the curiosity to discover what’s truly driving the other person and what’s going to meet their needs. So much of what you need to know is hidden under the surface. It takes curiosity to ask the right questions to gather the necessary information. You must actively listen to understand and have empathy throughout the process. 

An exercise to build your curiosity muscle

An exercise that Mike recommends to build your curiosity muscle is to take a sheet of paper and list out everything you know about the current situation: Who are the people you’ll be negotiating with? What is their professional background? What about personal information? What are they looking for? Who are the stakeholders? What issues may crop up? 

In another column write everything you’re wondering based on what you know. It enables you to train your intellectual curiosity and come up with a million great questions and avenues to explore during your negotiation. It also helps you focus on the driving factors and motivations of the other person.

Mike shares his top negotiation do’s and don’ts—and why price is rarely the issue in a failed negotiation—so keep listening!

A negotiation doesn’t exist in a vacuum

Mike is a huge history buff. One of his favorite negotiation stories happened during JFK’s presidency: The Cuban Missile Crisis. The United States found out that Russia had been building and storing missiles in Cuba. The situation could’ve easily escalated into conflict—maybe even a nuclear war. But when the two countries negotiated, they allowed each party to save face. They consciously applied empathy and placed themselves in the other person's shoes before they made moves that could exacerbate the situation. 

Mike points out that you must never back a person into a corner or make them look bad in front of other people. A negotiation doesn’t exist in a vacuum. The people you negotiate with will always have to explain their decisions to another person. They have to think about whether or not the deal will reflect well on them. It’s part of the social conditioning built around making a deal. It’s our job to help them feel confident and certain they can justify their decision to another person. They’ll go through with the agreement if they are confident in the deal being made.

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Mike Macchiarelli

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Sep 2, 2020

Why is knowing your walk-away point so important in a negotiation? How does it influence the process? In this episode of the Sales Reinvented podcast, Diane Helbig shares her thoughts on knowing your floor—your bottom-line walk-away point—and why it’s such an important part of the negotiation process. 

Diane Helbig is an international business advisor, sales trainer, and growth accelerator. She is the author of Succeed Without Selling and the host of the Accelerate Your Business Growth podcast. Don’t miss her unique take on the negotiation process!

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:36] Diane’s definition of negotiation
  • [0:57] The key to long-term and successful relationships
  • [1:14] Change the mindset around the negotiation 
  • [1:58] Diane’s process begins with knowing your walk-away point
  • [3:54] The attributes Diane believes are important in a salesperson
  • [4:31] Tools, tactics, and strategies to prepare for the negotiation
  • [5:11] Don’t make assumptions during any part of the process
  • [6:52] How Diane’s firm walk-away point paid off big

How Diane prepares for the negotiation process

Diane’s negotiation process always includes calculating her walk-away point. It simply means that she writes out the point she is willing to walk away if an agreement can’t be made. She emphasizes that you must know this before you walk into the negotiation conversation. 

Secondly, you must let the other party speak. You need to ask questions to understand their walk-away point. If you know their floor and ceiling, you can identify where you’ll meet in the middle. Diane implores salespeople to listen without a preconceived idea or agenda other than to learn. It’s critically important. Be quiet, calm, and hear what they’re saying and create healthy dialogue. 

Don’t make assumptions about any part of the negotiation process. Don’t assume anything—the conclusion, where they’re coming from, and what the customer needs or wants. Diane points out that this is a recipe for disaster. 

Be prepared to adapt the conversation

Another ‘don’t’ that Diane believes is important: Don’t respond to things you don’t hear. Salespeople have a bad habit of hearing what someone is saying but responding with a different or competing thought. They tend to come into the conversation with ONE thing they believe the customer needs to know or ONE solution they’re dead-set on offering. When a salesperson responds to what they wish was asked—it causes a massive disconnect. It’s all well and good to be prepared to convey your underlying value message. But If it isn’t brought up—there’s no point in mentioning it. 

When being blunt with your walk-away point helps you win big

15 years ago Diane had decided to leave the company she was working for. She created an agreement and a process that she wanted to approach her employer with. She created a strategy and she told the owner she wanted to change their relationship. She wanted to be paid a commission on each of her customer’s sales, not a salary. 

The owner said no to her request. So she asked him to sit down to have a conversation about it. As she listened to him, she realized his reasons for saying no weren’t in the best interest of the business, but about staying in control. She knew what her walk-away point was and they hit a point where she just said she’d give him her two-week notice—and he backed off. 

So they started to negotiate her commission. She wasn’t asking for commissions on sales with the highest paying clients or the other 180 she worked with—just the 20 clients she had a strong relationship with. They finally agreed on terms.

When Diane went back to sign the paperwork and asked “What do you want to tell people about what I’m doing?”. He questioned why he would need to tell them anything. She pointed out that if a client called that she wasn’t working with anymore, someone would have to tell them something. 

She realized he hadn’t paid attention to that portion of her conversation or the addendum in the paperwork. She ended up getting ALL of her clients and got exactly what she wanted and more while he got exactly what he wanted. She learned that you must be quiet, calm, and confident in the moment. The success of this negotiation was because she knew the value of what she had to offer and was confident with her walk-away point.

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Aug 26, 2020

It’s time to get comfortable being uncomfortable with negotiation. The vast majority of the population finds negotiation uncomfortable and they allow that discomfort to derail the process. Today’s guest on the Sales Reinvented podcast—Perry Green—shares that it doesn’t have to be that way. It can be a game-changer if you learn how to embrace the discomfort and move beyond it. 

Perry Green is a highly accomplished and experienced negotiation executive, with over 25 years in the CPG industry. He is a past recipient of The President’s Award, Nestle’s highest sales honor. He’s currently the Director of The Gap Partnership, the world’s leading negotiation consultancy. Don’t miss this episode packed with expert advice from one of the best negotiators. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:40] Negotiation is an intentional and intense conversation
  • [1:21] Negotiation helps you identify how to move forward
  • [2:02] Why salespeople don’t like to negotiate
  • [3:50] Perry shares his “de-preparation” process
  • [5:12] The attributes of a great negotiator
  • [6:10] Embrace this powerful negotiation tool
  • [7:13] Perry shares his top 3 dos and don’ts 
  • [9:49] The hardest part of the negotiation process

Salespeople must get comfortable being uncomfortable

Perry points out that salespeople always focus on the ABCs: Always Be Closing. Once we hit our objective, we are high-fiving and celebrating. But with the negotiation process, you have to push yourself to a place where you’re uncomfortable. The deal you’ve “won” may go sideways or fall apart, and that’s hard to cope with. We want to feel good about the relationship, but then we want to get out of there. 

Negotiation is an uncomfortable back-and-forth. But Perry points out that we have to get comfortable being uncomfortable. One way you can do that is by looking beyond why you’re there. Most salespeople represent a large organization. They represent numerous voiceless and faceless people within that organization. The revenue that you bring in allows those employees to take care of their families. 

Perry emphasizes that those are the things we have to think about—versus our own discomfort. We have to focus on the value that we bring to the table. 

Be a practitioner of the craft

Perry notes that a successful negotiator needs to be a practitioner of their craft. You need to be someone who is going to practice the craft every single day. If you’re studying body language in negotiation, are you practicing the techniques in conversation with your colleagues? Are you practicing at home? Applying those skill sets in your day-to-day helps them to become natural so that when you’re in an uncomfortable negotiation you’re able to overcome your discomfort.

Perry also recommends embracing the tool of silence. He believes it is the most powerful weapon that you have. Salespeople love to talk, so when we don’t talk it unnerves the other party. It allows us to see what’s going on inside their head. It’s also a tactic we often forget about. Perry believes that if we’re going to say something it should be followed by questions to glean information from the other party. Then you stay silent and listen.

Don’t let your customer see you sweat

Perry emphasizes: “Don’t ever let your counterparty see you sweat.” Instead, you have to learn to get comfortable being uncomfortable. Get out of your own head and don’t spend your time making rationalizations. Don’t focus on trying to figure out where things will go. Instead, get in their head and glean the information you need that will bring you to the outcome that you want. He also notes that you shouldn’t give the other party more power than they already have. Start the negotiation from an equal playing field. To hear more of Perry’s strategies to get comfortable being uncomfortable, keep listening!

The hardest part of the negotiation process

When Perry worked for Nestle, he worked with a national retailer that his company had an exciting relationship with. They had been working together for years. During this particular negotiation, they were working on a joint business plan. Both sides kept introducing more variables to try and make the deal work. The negotiation went on for a week.

When they finally reconvened, Perry was ready to do whatever necessary to get the deal done. 

But he’ll never forget what his category manager said to him: “Perry, no is an acceptable answer.” Unfortunately, the answer in that negotiation was no. From there on out Perry recognized that he had to get comfortable being uncomfortable and learn to say no when it was necessary. In the end they got better results because they didn’t try to force something and pay too much for it. 

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Aug 19, 2020

Do you have the right combination of negotiation tools, tactics, and strategies in your arsenal? Do you understand how important it is to develop negotiation skills? In this episode of the Sales Reinvented podcast, Kristie Jones shares some of her favorite negotiation tools. She also gives some sage advice about the negotiation process. Don’t miss it! 

Kristie Jones is the Principal at the Sales Acceleration Group. Kristie is the go-to expert for tech startup founders who want to accelerate their revenue by improving their sales strategy, process, and people. She uses her 15+ years of experience to help small and mid-sized technology companies take their revenue to the next level.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:43] What is negotiation?
  • [1:31] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate?
  • [2:39] How Kristie uses anchoring in negotiation 
  • [4:01] The attributes of a great negotiator
  • [6:20] Negotiation tools, tactics, and strategies
  • [7:49] Kristie’s top 3 negotiation dos and top 3 don’ts
  • [11:07] Kristie’s favorite negotiation story

Negotiation is a critical piece of the sales process

According to Kristie, negotiation is the process of working toward an agreement on an issue formally not agreed upon. She notes that people don’t regularly see eye-to-eye on numerous topics. So the ability to talk through differences without damaging a business relationship is critical to ongoing and long-term success.

Negotiation gets tricky because people, in general, don’t like to negotiate. Not only that, but most sales reps don’t have the correct formal training or repeatable processes in place that allow them to deal with those situations—and proper training is key. Salespeople have a process for filling funnels. We have cadences and sequences to handle outbound leads, stages in the sales cycle, and more. But Kristie is willing to bet that no one could pull out a repeatable strategy for negotiation. 

Seek to understand your customer

Kristie points out that you have to seek to understand. She handles negotiation like she would an objection and she handles an objection by asking more questions. When a weird question comes up that seems out of left field, assume that the prospect has had a bad experience. Find out the reason the question is being asked. Find out if they have had adverse experiences. Then differentiate yourself from that past bad experience. 

If their question is an unreasonable request, she notes that you are completely free to say: “I wish I could. Unfortunately, this is the situation...” What if you could trade something else for money? If it’s a significant client with nice brand recognition, trade case studies or testimonials for a discount. Or adjust the terms of payment instead of reducing the price. Understanding what is influencing their behaviors can help you reach acceptable terms for both parties. 

Kristie’s negotiation tools, tactics, and strategies

A negotiation tool that Kristie likes to use is calculating the cost of not coming to an agreement. Make a list of costs to each side and write down the disadvantage of not coming to an agreement. Sellers think “I’ve got a lot more to lose than the prospect or customer if this doesn’t come together.” But that’s not always the case. They may lose face with their boss or their team if they don’t make a deal happen. It might not look favorable for them. 

People take negotiation personally—but it’s not your money. It’s the company's money. It is everyone's job to get the best deal for their organization. Kristie also states “Don’t set fire to a bridge you might need to cross later.” Some relationships won’t be repairable if you don’t handle them appropriately. There’s a difference between negotiation and personally insulting or offending the person on the other side of the table. An agitated and upset person will impact your bottom-line more than someone who is happy. 

What buying SIX Acura cars has taught Kristie about negotiation 

Kristie is a huge fan of Acura, so much so that she’s purchased six of them over the last 20 years. She buys all of her cars from a salesman that refers to himself as “The Polish car guy”. Kristie LOVES the negotiation process and haggling and negotiating with her car guy. They’ve developed a nice banter over the years. She waits for one phrase to come out of his mouth and when it does—she knows she’s won. 

She admits she employs the ‘Columbo’ technique. Columbo was a TV detective who would pretend everything was wrapped up and then—on his way out the door—would say “Just one more thing…” She always ends the car-buying process with “I’m going to need new floor mats”. 

Kristie notes that you must be prepared and know who you’re dealing with. Know how they’re going to react. She comes to the table having done her homework and knows the market value of the car is and what competitors are offering it for. Do the same with your negotiation and you’ll have a great foundation to work from. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Kristie Jones

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Aug 12, 2020

Asking leading questions may not be permitted in a court of law, but in the negotiation process it is inherently necessary to ask leading questions. Asking the right questions is the #1 negotiation tactic that Ian Moyse emphasizes in this episode of Sales Reinvented. We also chat about his negotiation process, attributes of a successful negotiator, and other tools and tactics he utilizes. Don’t miss it!

Ian Moyse is the EMEA Sales Director at Natterbox and based out of the UK. He is also an industry social influencer who is widely published on matters of Sales Leadership, Social Selling, and Personal Branding. He was awarded the accolade of UK Sales Director of the Year by BESMA and in 2019 was listed in the top 50 Sales Keynote speakers by Top Sales World. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:56] What is negotiation?
  • [1:53] Why is negotiation so important? 
  • [2:41] Salespeople prefer to avoid conflict
  • [4:48] You need to ask leading questions
  • [7:42] Practice and preparation is key
  • [11:40] Hone your questioning skills
  • [14:30] Top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [16:44] Ian’s favorite negotiation story

Negotiation is woven into the entire sales process

A negotiation consists of two parties who both want something different. You have to talk through questions that arise to get to a mutually agreeable outcome—even if it’s not moving forward together. It’s still a negotiation. The more complex and larger the investment the customer is making, the more variance there is. The more they’re creating their own package, the more the customer is likely to want something different. That’s why Ian believes you must ask leading questions. He also notes that you shouldn’t park the negotiation at the end of the sales process. The earlier you can drive what the customer wants and get the hard points on the table, the better.

A negotiation thrives when you ask leading questions

A negotiation is only as strong as the questions you ask. Which is why it should include asking leading questions. You want to gain an understanding of the things the customer is looking for that aren’t standard. Whether its payment terms, technology, or licensing—there will always be something that comes up. 

Ian notes that a negotiation is simply a discussion around what you can or can’t have, where you can meet, how you can adjust things, and whether or not you can come to a mutual agreement. If you can knock out some of the hard questions early on in the process you shouldn’t get blindsided at the end. 

Ian uses the analogy of the Titanic. If the captain had seen the iceberg 10 miles away and made adjustments there wouldn’t have been this big surprise at the end when the ship sank. A negotiation is the same. If you ask leading questions in the beginning, you can usually avoid a sinking ship. 

How to lessen the fear surrounding negotiation

The label “negotiation” often makes a salesperson quake in their boots. Especially because Procurement people are trained how to negotiate and press the buttons of salespeople. They're trained on what to say to a salesperson, what to ask, and how to behave to get the maximum they can out of the process. They are subtle and experienced

Another tactic that Ian recommends to prepare for the process and alleviate nervousness is to practice. Practice playing the negotiation out with someone. It’s not about having the answers—it’s the method of discussion that you engage in. Roleplay and practice ahead of time. 

He also notes that if you’re nervous, bring someone along with you who’s more experienced. If you’re the only person negotiating on your side, you spend your time formulating an answer. If there’s two of you, one can take notes and you can alternate answering questions.

Hone your questioning skills

Do you have the knowledge and proper approach so you ask the right questions and handle them appropriately? A customer can ask any question in the world—but it doesn’t mean they’re going to get the answer they want. Likewise, salespeople have the right to ask clarifying questions:

What are the most important things we can address first? Can you elaborate? Can you explain why? Is there anything else you need? Can I clarify what you’re asking? 

Get your counterpart to talk more and put everything on the table. If you can discuss some difficult things at the right time and with the right manner of professionalism it puts you in the best position to win. 

There is no perfect world. Sometimes—no matter how much you prepare and ask leading questions—a negotiation won’t move forward. It’s the nature of business and negotiation. To hear more of Ian’s expert advice, listen to the whole episode!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Ian Moyse

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Aug 5, 2020

Most salespeople can naturally sense tension but are wholly uncomfortable with it. But healthy tension in negotiation is a normal part of the process that salespeople should embrace. According to today’s guest—Melissa Madian—healthy tension is critical to the success of a negotiation. In this episode of Sales Reinvented she talks about how it influences a negotiation and brings value to both parties. She emphasizes understanding the value you offer and holding firm. To benefit from her years of expertise in the field, listen to this episode!

Melissa Madian is the Founder and Chief Fabulous Officer at TMM Enablement Services Inc. She was one of the first people to pioneer the Sales Enablement role and has spent the past 25 years perfecting the sales experience for revenue-generating teams. Melissa is one of the 15 Top Sales Influencers to Follow in 2020, one of the 20 Women Leaders to Watch in Business in 2018 and ranked 10th of the 35+ Most Influential Women Leading B2B Marketing Technology.

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:10] Capture value while maintaining healthy tension
  • [1:38] Negotiation abilities impact profitability
  • [2:47] Negotiation is the entire sales cycle
  • [4:10] Melissa’s negotiation process
  • [5:34] A salesperson can’t be afraid of conflict
  • [7:16] Negotiation tools, tactics, strategies
  • [8:12] Melissa’s top 3 dos and don’ts
  • [10:42] Why you should always present two options

The inaccurate perception of negotiation

In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Melissa Madian points out that there’s a perception that negotiation happens at the end of the sales cycle. That when we get to that point it’s time to put our gloves on and fight it out. Instead, she emphasizes that you’re always in a state of negotiation. There’s always a balance of give and get. It’s not you versus your customer. 

It’s about answering the question: How am I going to make sure we get value and the seller maintains value? In order to do so, you must maintain healthy tension. Melissa’s definition of negotiation is that simple: It’s capturing value while maintaining healthy tension. 

Maintain healthy tension in the negotiation

Melissa references a McKinsey report in which they shared that for every 5% that we discount our solution or product, 19% of the profit is lost. So when discounts are given because a salesperson would rather concede than operate in tension, all of your value leaks out of the negotiation. It also undermines your position as a valued vendor. 

Melissa notes that you need to go into the negotiation with a plan in place and determine what value each party needs to get. Then you need to decide what kind of healthy tension will you maintain in the negotiation so you don’t give up too much—but acquiesce when necessary. It always comes down to: What value am I providing to the customer? 

Be a personal trainer NOT a bartender

Melissa uses a wonderful analogy of a bartender and a personal trainer. She points out that there is no negotiation process with a bartender. You pay them and they feed you endless drinks until you’re drunk. There is no healthy tension, no give and take. The bartender gives and gives, and you take. 

Instead of being a bartender, you must negotiate like a personal trainer. A personal trainer pushes you towards your goals. At any given time, there might be a lot of conflict in the relationship because they’re pushing you to be better. The balance of the relationship is a healthy tension where both parties are pushed towards the same goal. 

Hold firm to the value you provide

Melissa emphasizes that good negotiators don’t roll over, they curate healthy tension because they know they’re offering something of value to their customer. You must first know the value of what you’re providing and then hold firm to the value you’re providing so that you don’t lose profit and you maintain your credibility. 

In order to know the value you’re providing them you must do your research. You know to know your customer, understand their pain points, and recognize how your product or service is making a positive impact on their company. You must research the potential roles that may get involved, objections that may come up, and do not allow yourself to be surprised by anything that crops up. Do not wing it or you will be blind-sided. 

She also implores: Do not assume that the customer won’t pay more money for what you’re providing to them. Customers do not pay solely because an item is well-priced. They pay for the value that it offers them. If you maintain healthy tension in the process you are more likely to succeed. To hear the rest of Melissa’s negotiation strategies and her favorite negotiation story, listen to the whole episode of Sales Reinvented!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Melissa Madian

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jul 29, 2020

Emotional control in the negotiation process is difficult to master. It’s partly because as a species we are ruled by emotion. It’s difficult to take a step back and let go of the different influences on the negotiation and focus on the facts. In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Jeb Blount shares his take on emotional control in negotiation and why it’s so important to the process.

Jeb Blount is the CEO of Sales Gravy and a Sales Acceleration Specialist. He’s a best-selling author and most recently penned: INKED: The Ultimate Guide to Powerful Closing and Sales Negotiation Tactics that Unlock YES and Seal the Deal. Jeb is a world-renowned keynote speaker and the host of the Sales Gravy Podcast. This episode is packed with information you can use to become a better negotiator—don’t miss it!

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:01] Jeb’s definition of negotiation
  • [2:04] Negotiation is the precursor to profit
  • [3:10] Salespeople find negotiation uncomfortable
  • [5:20] The rules Jeb follows in the negotiation process
  • [10:01] Emotional control and other important attributes
  • [13:16] The MLP Strategy (motivation, leverage, and power)
  • [17:18] Important negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [20:34] Jeb’s eye-opening negotiation story

Negotiation isn’t an inherent part of western culture

Negotiation is essentially emotionally controlled conflict. Jeb points out that because it’s inherently conflict, it’s difficult for people in western economies to engage in. Negotiation isn’t an everyday facet of our lives like it is in some Eastern cultures, such as India. If you’re in the UK, US, or Canada you don’t negotiate—you pay the price

Because negotiating isn’t a part of our everyday existence, we aren’t good at it nor do we like it. There’s a lot of stigma surrounding negotiating. In some instances, if you attempt to haggle or negotiate a price it’s met with contempt and an upturned nose—leaving you embarrassed. When it isn’t a cultural norm, it can feel uncomfortable. It can feel like rejection. It feels like a zero-sum game with distinct winners and losers. 

Unfortunately, most salespeople aren’t properly trained how to negotiate. If they are, they’re trained by someone who typically doesn’t have sales experience. On the flip side, most procurement people are professionally trained negotiators who know what they’re doing and take advantage of that fact. 

Three rules for the negotiation process

Jeb embraces a few rules as part of his negotiation process: 

Rule #1: Don’t negotiate until you’ve already won the deal. Until you’re selected as the vendor of choice, don’t attempt to negotiate—or you’re just negotiating with yourself.

Rule #2: Leverage the negotiation triangle. Make sure you develop a great relationship with someone in the stakeholder group. Once they select you, you’re typically shoved off to procurement who want to lower your prices. It’s nice to have a stakeholder to reach out to if it seems you’re at an impasse.

Rule #3: Incorporate a give-take playlist. Jeb points out that you should never give without taking something in return. He emphasizes that “I want to be able to give things to the buyer that are low-value to me but high-value to the buyer while I take things away from the buyer that are high-value to them.” The more you take, the more painful the negotiation process becomes—thereby compelling them to stop negotiating and align on a deal.

A salesperson must master emotional control

Jeb believes that emotional control is paramount to your success:

“Don't negotiate when you're hungry. Don't negotiate when you're tired. Don't negotiate when you're worn out. Because when you're in those positions, you're more likely to give things away that you don't have to...When you're worn out, there's a limit to your willpower, your emotional control, and discipline.”

He notes that if you’re not in a position where you can exercise full emotional control, do everything possible to reschedule the negotiation so you don’t get into a situation where you're giving away the upper hand to the buyer.

Jeb goes on to share a negotiation strategy that he teaches in his book: The MLP strategy (Motivation, Leverage, and Power). He also shares some powerful negotiation dos and don’ts. To learn more about how he leverages these in a negotiation, keep listening!

A story about the power of emotional control and relationships

Jeb’s company had spent six months going through a discovery phase with a prospect they had worked with in the past. But the deal they were working on was the largest yet. They had reached the final proposal and were selected as the vendor of choice. So the stakeholder group sent them off to procurement to nail down contracts.

Their counterparties procurement team sent them a letter stating that they had found other businesses that can do what Jeb’s company was offering—but at a better price. Jeb’s saleswoman read that letter and lost all emotional control, worried they were going to lose the deal. She was poised and ready to concede and lower their pricing to save the deal. But Jeb knew it was a negotiation tactic and responded accordingly. He let them know that they’d be happy to lower the price to fit the budget, but that something would have to be removed from the deal to do so. 

They came back to the table and quibbled over details for three solid months. The executive team was being pressured by the upper-management to wrap things up because they were now way behind schedule. Jeb received a call from the executive sponsor trying to figure out what the hold-up was. Jeb filled him in and told him that procurement had stalled the process. 

So the executive sponsor made a call to the Senior Vice President. The VP then called procurement. 24 hours later, they received their original contract, signed and ready to move forward. Jeb’s emotional control and relationship-building strategy won them the deal

This episode is PACKED with useful resources from a top sales negotiator. Listen to the whole episode to take advantage of his vast knowledge and expertise. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Jeb Blount

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jul 22, 2020

Do you know what it takes to be a successful negotiator? Do you possess some of the necessary skills and attributes? Do you need to brush up on your negotiation skills? In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Mladen Kresic hones in on why salespeople struggle with negotiation. He also shares some of his favorite negotiation tactics and gives some pointers for dealing with the negotiation process. Mladen is full of spectacular insight into the negotiation process. Don’t miss it!

Mladen Kresic is the CEO of K&R Negotiations—aka For 30+ years Mladen has successfully negotiated billions in deals all over the world on behalf of the most well-known international companies. His expertise is working with C-level executives in business transactions. He is the author of Negotiate Wisely in Business and Technology, a guide for sales negotiations and an Amazon e-book best-seller. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:59] Negotiation: an interaction to achieve a result
  • [1:12] Why is negotiation important in business?
  • [1:50] Why salespeople don’t like to negotiate
  • [3:22] Mladen’s value-based negotiation process
  • [5:00] Attributes of a successful negotiator
  • [6:51] Negotiation tools, tactics, and strategies
  • [10:03] Top 3 negotiation dos and top 3 don’ts
  • [13:25] Mladen’s favorite negotiation story

Why do salespeople struggle with negotiation?

Mladen notes that negotiation is viewed as an adversarial process. Most sales professionals want to be liked by their customers. They want to please them. To some, entering into a negotiation feels like they’re putting that relationship on shaky ground. But Mladen believes that if they must view a negotiation as a process to achieve a result versus giving it a negative connotation. Doing that will change the process for the better and help you become a successful negotiator. 

Secondly, Mladen sees a lot of salespeople who don’t know when to walk away. They can be so desperate for a sale to meet their quota that they overlook things they shouldn’t. They’re so focused on being liked and reaching a deal that they get frustrated when the deal is dead. They have to learn to walk away when and if necessary. 

How Mladen prepares for a high-stakes negotiation

Mladen focuses his negotiations around what he calls the leverage cycle. It’s value-based leverage that is about delivering an outcome to the buyers. It creates confidence in the seller that they can deliver what the buyer seeks to improve. 

Mladen also focuses on agenda management. Most people think about an agenda in terms of how to conduct a meeting, interaction, or phone call. Instead, Mladen focuses on a macro-agenda, or what the entire process looks like—the resources and activities that need to happen in that timeline. 

Mladen believes it is THE most critical aspect of the process that we should focus on in order to thrive as a successful negotiator.

The attributes of a successful negotiator

Everyone has natural traits that will not necessarily change so you must play to your strengths. Mladen emphases that negotiation is an art AND a science and there are some things that can be learned, but that these traits are paramount to your success:

  • Genuine Curiosity: Genuine curiosity is absolutely critical. What makes the other side tick? What do they value? What do they need out of this relationship?
  • Confidence without arrogance: A prospect wants to feel that you’re confident in your product/service but are humble in your approach.
  • Competence: You need to know your product or service well and be knowledgeable about the counterparty as well. 
  • Integrity: Salespeople have a poor reputation because they’re perceived as lacking integrity, which is why this attribute is so important. 
  • Compassion: You have to have a level of compassion for the people you’re negotiating with and be able to put yourself in their shoes.

Mladen believes that if a salesperson possesses these attributes they’ll be one step closer to being a successful negotiator. Mladen goes on to share his Risk/Reward tactic, how to break down levels of importance, and other strategies and tactics that are important to the negotiation process—so keep listening! 

Mladen’s negotiation dos and don’ts

Mladen shared some pertinent dos and don’ts in this episode:

  1. Listen more and talk less. Mladen admits he’s a type-A personality that loves to talk (as are many salespeople). But to be a successful negotiator, you must purposefully slow your pace and be sure to listen intently and talk less. He points out that you’ll always have the opportunity to say what you need to say at some point. But first and foremost, you want your counterpart to feel heard and understood. 
  2. Prepare and plan—don’t wing it. This is where agenda management comes into play. Even if you’re strapped for time, you make time to prepare. It is unprofessional to come into a negotiation completely unprepared. 
  3. Don’t make arbitrary concessions. Don’t respond to a request just because they asked. It’s detrimental to one’s credibility and prolongs the process. Instead, Mladen shares that you need to engage in principle concessions: concessions made with credible business rationale. Is the scope too large? Is there a lack of value in the deal? Is there a competitive alternative that is better placed and lower priced?

If you begin to employ some of these strategies in your negotiations, you’ll likely yield more favorable results. Mladen shares his favorite negotiation story and how it changed his negotiation style in the remainder of the podcast—so be sure to listen to the end!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Mladen Kresic

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jul 15, 2020

Are you aware of how your mental mindset impacts the entire negotiation process? Do you walk into a negotiation feeling timid or unsure? Or are you confident and prepared for the negotiation process? Mary Grothe understands how mindset influences the negotiation process and has developed a strategy that she’s found success with. Listen to this episode of Sales Reinvented to hear her take. 

Mary Grothe is the CEO of Sales BQ®, an outsourced RevOps firm of fractional VPs of Sales, Sales Ops, and CMOs who serve companies across the nation by profitably rebuilding their sales & marketing departments and growing their revenue by focusing on the Behavioral Quotient (BQ) and proven inbound + outbound strategies. Don’t miss Mary’s unique insight into the negotiation process!

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:04] Mary’s definition of negotiation
  • [1:24] Why negotiation is so important
  • [2:15] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate?
  • [3:27] A negotiation begins with your mental mindset
  • [11:38] Negotiations tools, tactics, strategies
  • [13:46] The 4 levers Mary recommends using
  • [15:52] Mary’s favorite negotiation story

The negotiation process starts with adjusting your mental mindset

Mary points out that most executives know how to negotiate. If you go into a negotiation knowing that the person on the other end of the table is educated in negotiation tactics, you can go in with a different mindset. You’ll know that they’ll take one look at your proposal and will never agree to the first terms set forth. If you have the expectation they WILL negotiate, it changes how you approach the entire process. 

A lot of salespeople crumble, give in on pricing, and don’t get great margins on their deals. So how does she prepare for the negotiation process? Understand that it’s about getting a win-win for both sides. Then you must calculate your walk-away point: your starting point, your middle point that you present as the walk-away point, and then your full walk-away point. Knowing what each of these numbers are helps prepare you and boosts your confidence.

Remove emotion from the negotiation process

Mary emphasizes that you must remove emotion from the negotiation process—it sets you up for failure. Salespeople are known for “desperation justification”. They have a quota they have to meet by the end of the month or end of a quarter. Most negotiators know this. What if this deal is HUGE and you’re behind on your quota? What if you don’t know your pricing? Do you come across as lacking confidence or knowledge about your product and service?

Trained negotiators—and your prospect—can pick up on your emotion and lack of confidence. Unfortunately, it gives them the leverage they need to negotiate a better deal for themselves. Knowing that you need a deal gives them the upper-hand. But if you remove emotion and any ulterior motives from the process you can level the playing field. Keep listening to hear Mary’s full thoughts on the topic.

The importance of PCE: passion, conviction, and enthusiasm

Mary strongly believes that a great negotiator must embrace ‘PCE’:

  • Passion: You must be passionate about your product or service and completely bought-in to solving the prospect’s problem. It helps the prospect become comfortable with moving forward with you.
  • Conviction: You must have conviction about how your product/service will help your prospect. Show that you can quantify your problem and present case studies, testimonials, etc. that prove you can solve their problem. 
  • Enthusiasm: If you exude enthusiasm and get the buyer bought in and enthusiastic about the sale, you’re shrinking the negotiation game. They’re excited about getting the deal done and less focused on negotiating price and contract terms. 

Mary also notes that salespeople must be assertive and confident. When a salesperson believes they can solve their client’s problem it leads to confidence. There isn’t desperation justification in play—they truly believe in their product. 

The four levers to implement in your negotiation 

Mary shares four ways that you can leverage concessions to make them work for your company, while also giving your prospect what they’re asking for:

  1. Are they asking for a discount? Agree to the discount, but ask what item they’re comfortable removing from the proposal.
  2. Do they want to decrease the price per item? Offer a decrease in price if they purchase over a certain threshold. 
  3. Offer them a monetary concession if they can execute the deal in the next 24 hours. This is a common end of month/quarter strategy that negotiators are accustomed to working with.
  4. Agree to some sort of concession if the buyer agrees to give a testimonial, be a reference, or introduce and/or refer people to your product and/or service.

Utilizing some of these negotiation tactics will help each side find a win-win from concessions and come closer to a deal. 

Mary shares a negotiation story that led her to develop her successful negotiation process—listen to the whole episode to hear how it changed her negotiation game!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Mary Grothe

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jul 8, 2020

The negotiation process isn’t always easy for a salesperson to navigate. But mastering the process is paramount to your success. The bottom line: if you can’t negotiate well you won’t fare well in anything you do in life. In this episode of Sales Reinvented, Chad Burmeister joins me to talk about some of the parts of the negotiation process that salespeople shy away from—and how to change it. 

Chad Burmeister is the Founder and CEO of, which promises to deliver an “unfair competitive advantage” by helping your salespeople increase lead frequency and sales competency. He is the author of multiple books, including AI for Sales and Sales Hack. Don’t miss his stellar insight on the negotiation process. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:29] Our lives are built on negotiation 
  • [1:59] Salespeople aren't comfortable discussing money
  • [4:45] How to master the negotiation process
  • [6:29] Salespeople need to understand the customers’ problem
  • [7:58] Chad’s favorite negotiation closing technique
  • [8:55] Chad’s FUN acronym
  • [11:15] How one negotiation changed Chad’s life

The importance of negotiation

Chris Voss was the first to make the phrase “everything is a negotiation” popular—and for good reason. Chad points out that nearly everything we do involves negotiation. When you make a purchase, engage in a conversation, or play with your kids, some sort of negotiation is involved. Chad points out that it’s well worth any monetary investment to go from a ‘C’ level negotiator to an ‘A+’. Perhaps that change in status means more bookings, more revenue—maybe even fame and fortune. Whatever it is you’re trying to achieve in life can be benefitted from mastering negotiation. 

Understand that the negotiation process means you’ll talk about Money

The Objective Management Group has studied close to two million salespeople and found that only 54% are comfortable discussing money. A salesperson NEEDS to be able to comfortably discuss money in the negotiation process—yet most can’t stomach it. Chad sees that as one of the biggest roadblocks to a successful negotiation. 

Chad notes that the discomfort associated with discussing money is often associated with the way you were raised. Did your family have money? Were they savers or spenders? Did they avoid discussing money at all? If you can understand your money mindset and buying pattern, you can learn how to master this part of the negotiation process. 

Instead of letting a prospect walk away to “look at other vendors” you have to be comfortable pointing out what you discussed. “I thought we’ve discussed your priorities and requirements? You’ll save a million and increase sales by 5.4 million. Why do you need to look at the other vendors?” Chad shares another story about haggling in Mexico that drives the point home—so keep listening. 

Roleplay the negotiation process

When Chad completed his MBA, he took a class on power, politics, and negotiation. They spent a lot of time role-playing negotiations. Roleplaying in class with other students was the catalyst he needed to learn the negotiation process inside and out. 

Aside from consistent practice, Chad recommends taking a class or reading a book—you can even play poker. Learning the art of poker is a great way to learn how to see people’s tells, when they’re exaggerating, etc. 

Chad also believes you need to master closing techniques. Instead of “let’s schedule our next step meeting” at the end of a meeting, ask “If I could... would you…?” You’re essentially giving them an option to voice any objections they have to closing the deal in that meeting. 

To hear more of Chad’s advice—including his thoughts on gap selling—keep listening!

How Chad’s negotiation process changed his life

Chad’s second job out of college was with Airborne Express. He had set up a meeting with Uhaul about some packages they had been shipping with USPS They were shipping packages of license plates for $4.50. The Uhaul would meet the USPS truck in whichever state the plates were to be delivered. They send 12,000 of these a month. 10% of the time, the USPS truck didn’t make it in time and the license plates got shipped back. So Chad took the time to dig and find out the impact of the 10% of trucks that were missed.

Other than being fined, every once and a while a cop would sometimes pull over Uhaul trucks with expired plates and make them empty the contents from one truck into another. So with the fines, he calculated Uhaul was spending $5.87 to ship the new license plates. Airborne typically charged $6 to ship, but he offered to do it at $5 and demonstrated the total cost of ownership that would save Uhaul money. 

Chad won the account—1,000 shipments a month. Then he won the Canadian account, which was 2,000 shipments a month. He went on to become the #1 salesperson at Airborne. Eventually, he got recruited away to a job in southern California where he met his wife and started his family—all because of the outcome of ONE negotiation. 

Listen to the whole episode of Sales Reinvented for Chad’s insight on the negotiation process. If you’re looking to improve your skills—this is the place to start!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Chad Burmeister

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jun 30, 2020

Relationship building is an important aspect of the negotiation process, according to Dr. Daniel Shapiro. Whether you’re negotiating with a prospective customer, negotiating with a spouse, or negotiating with another country—it all hinges on the ability to build a relationship. In this episode of Sales Reinvented, we talk about building relationships, attributes of a great negotiator, top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts, and much more. Don’t miss this one!

Dr. Daniel Shapiro is a world-renowned expert on negotiation and middle-east politics. He was the US ambassador to Israel from 2011–2017. He also founded and currently directs the Harvard International Negotiation Program. Dan consults regularly for government leaders and Fortune 500 companies and has advised everyone from hostage negotiators to families in crisis, disputing CEOs to clashing heads of state. He is also the author of two best-selling books, Negotiating the Nonnegotiable and Building Agreement: Using Emotions as You Negotiate.

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:06] Humans are constantly negotiating
  • [2:05] Changing the negative perception of negotiation
  • [3:49] Dan describes the pillars of his negotiation process
  • [7:37] The attributes of a great negotiator
  • [8:44] Allow your customer autonomy 
  • [11:44] Top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [17:05] Dan’s favorite negotiation story

The entire sales process consists of negotiation

The common misconception of negotiation is that it’s just one part of the sales process in which costs are debated. The reality is that the entire sales process is a negotiation. Anytime you interact with someone else with a purpose in mind you are negotiating. Most salespeople love their jobs and it’s simply one part of the process that brings them more stress. How do we change that? 

Dan states that you must change how you view the negotiation process. Firstly, you must focus on building a relationship with the customer. Many salespeople naturally excel in relationship building. Secondly, you must listen with intent: Figure out what your counterpart actually wants and where their interests lie. 

The process doesn’t have to encapsulate an “us against them” mentality. You should present options for mutual gains and invent new ideas with the customer. Be innovative with your approach so they don’t move on to the next salesperson. 

The pillars of Dan’s negotiation process

Dr. Dan emphasizes throughout the episode that relationship building skills are key. The first pillar that he sets forth is all about building the relationship. Building a relationship is your greatest source of influence now AND into the future. The more you can build a good trusting relationship with some sense of connection the more effective you will be in the negotiation process.

Per Dan, “The most effective negotiations by and large—in the business realm and the international realm—are side by side. They are cooperative.”

Conversely, no salesperson is in it just for the relationship. They are also motivated to make a good sale. Aside from building a relationship with the prospect, you need to be keenly aware of their interests. What’s motivating their behavior other than getting a good deal? Are they hoping for a promotion? Is their budget quite low? Dan acknowledges there could be 1,000 different reasons—but it’s your job to find out what those reasons are. 

With the foundation of a relationship and the knowledge of what motivates them, you can work to craft a potential agreement that meets their interests—and yours. 

The importance of autonomy

A great negotiator is an avid listener. They learn what their counterpart cares about, what they want out of the relationship, what they’re fearful of, and what they’re dreams and aspirations are. They don’t listen to exploit, but they listen to craft an agreement that works for everyone. You must remember that your counterpart wants the freedom to make decisions without it being imposed on them. They want autonomy

Dan first became aware of this concept when he was a teenager shopping for jeans at Gap. The slightly older teenager assisting him was showering him with compliments and telling him how great he looked in the jeans. Dan realized he couldn’t decipher if the compliments were real—or just being used to make a sale and therefore a commission for the pushy teenager. 

Instead of pushing someone into a sale, allow them the autonomy to make their own decision. Share the attributes of the product, why it meets their interests, and why your pricing is fair while allowing them the freedom to walk away. If they can find a better deal with someone else, then let them know that you won’t stand in their way. Doing this builds trust in your customer relationship. Having their best interest in mind speaks volumes.

The power of appreciation in relationship building

Dan believes that the power of appreciation is the single most important thing to apply to a negotiation. He emphasizes that in ANY human interaction we want to feel heard, understood, and valued—appreciated on a deep level. Yes, you want to come to a deal, but deals don’t happen on an emotional level if the other side doesn’t feel appreciated and respected. It’s more than a thank you. It’s listening to try and find value from their perspective. To find merit in what they’re feeling, thinking, communicating, and understanding. 

It isn’t an adversarial or antagonistic approach, but one bent on understanding their perspective and shifting into their seat on a psychological level. If you can truly understand their perspective and appreciate where they’re coming from, it can change the course of the negotiation. Dan shares a powerful negotiation story about how cooperation and understanding in a negotiation lead to more effective outcomes. Listen to the whole episode for more of his negotiation expertise. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect With Paul Watts 

Connect with Dan Shapiro


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Jun 24, 2020

Do you view negotiation as a conversation? Or a battle with clear winners and losers? Nicole Soames joins me in this episode of @SalesReinvented to start the conversation surrounding negotiation—and reveal why so many of the mindsets salespeople have regarding negotiation are faulty. She shares common misunderstandings, how to prepare for a negotiation, and much more.

Nicole Soames is the CEO & Founder of Diadem Performance, a commercial skills training and coaching company. She is passionate about applying emotional intelligence to negotiation conversations. Nicole is a best-selling author and sought after coach whose savvy advice is revealed in this episode of Sales Reinvented. Be sure to listen!

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:49] Nicole’s definition of negotiation
  • [1:07] Negotiation is a conversation
  • [2:52] Why salespeople don’t like to negotiate
  • [5:46] Negotiation isn’t a process—but a conversation 
  • [8:04] Emotional intelligence is the #1 attribute you must possess
  • [9:56] There are no shortcuts: negotiation preparation is key
  • [11:43] Nicole’s top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [13:24] Don’t engage in negative internal conversations
  • [14:35] How children are powerful negotiators

Common misunderstandings about negotiation 

Many salespeople mistake negotiation for haggling or bartering. If you shift your viewpoint to negotiation as a conversation, you’re better equipped to build a long-lasting relationship. People are only as powerful as the conversations they have. Nicole believes we achieve results based on the conversations we have with others. Everything is negotiable—but you can only receive if you first ask. 

Another faulty misconception is that salespeople are schooled in the philosophy that the customer is always right. So when they enter a negotiation conversation, they have placed the customer on a pedestal. By doing so, they cede control and power to the prospect and end up paying dearly for those relationships.

Salespeople are usually engaged with a procurement person—who is well-versed in negotiation tactics. Because each of these people are leaning on their learned skills, a negotiation conversation often ends in disagreement, deadlock, and disappointment. What is the easiest way to avoid that? Keep listening to find out!

Negotiation needs to be a conversation 

Most people who have received negotiation training are taught that it’s a process—it’s linear and theoretical. Nicole is quick to point out that it shouldn’t be viewed as a process but as a negotiation conversation. Thinking about it as a conversation changes the way you engage in the negotiation. You should approach your conversation by contemplating answers to these questions: 

Why should I feel confident? What will their challenges be? How will I handle them? Am I exhibiting an appropriate level of ambition? How will I break the deadlock?

Approaching your conversation with emotional intelligence is the largest differentiator and competitive advantage that Nicole can see. You must remember that you’re negotiating with a human. There is a real person on the other side of this conversation. It’s why Nicole advocates for face-to-face communication whenever possible (versus email). 

How to prepare for your negotiation conversation 

There are no shortcuts. Preparation for a negotiation is paramount to its success. One unique tactic that Nicole recommends is to “big yourself up”: write down all the reasons you should feel confident in the negotiation conversation. Build yourself up and read it to yourself. Don’t allow yourself to fall trap to inner conversations that say things like “They won’t say yes” or “Everyone is having a difficult time right now”. 

Secondly, you must prepare for any curveballs that may come your way. Nicole emphasizes that forewarned is forearmed. And while you want to prepare for variables, she believes that you should NOT prepare a walkaway point. Doing so is admitting defeat and claiming that it’s okay to fail. Nicole believes that you get the best results when you’re challenged and under some pressure. To hear Nicole’s top negotiation 3 dos and don’ts and her ‘ABC method’ keep listening!

Learn the art of the negotiation conversation from your children

Nicole admits that children are expert negotiators. What makes our children SO good at negotiation? Think about it—children are relentlessly ambitious. They use every overt tactic in the book and wind parents down until they get what they want. “All of my friends have this” or “All of their parents allow that” is a very effective strategy. Nicole admits she smiles every time she sees her children negotiating with her. They are ace negotiators and we can learn a lot from them. 

Talk about some unique insight. To hear the rest of Nicole’s thoughts on viewing negotiation as a conversation, be sure to listen to the whole episode! 

Connect with Nicole Soames

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jun 17, 2020

Keld Jensen—today’s guest on the Sales Reinvented podcast—feels that many businesses struggle with the negotiation process because they aren’t focused on a collaborative negotiation. Unfortunately, they embrace the mindset of ‘needing to win’ at all costs and focus on squashing the competition. Keld shares WHY this is the wrong mindset to embrace and what a collaborative negotiation should look like. Don’t miss it!

Keld Jensen has over 30 years of experience in negotiation. He is the founder of the SMARTnership negotiation strategy—THE most awarded collaborative negotiation strategy in the world. Keld has written and published 24 books in 36 countries. He runs a consulting and training organization that works with governments and businesses around the world to change how they engage in negotiations. Don’t miss his years of expertise—listen to this episode now!

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:52] Keld Jensen weighs in on negotiation
  • [1:37] Revenue can only be created with negotiation
  • [2:30] Salespeople can be unconsciously incompetent
  • [3:30] Keld’s collaborative negotiation process
  • [5:15] The attributes a successful negotiator espouses
  • [7:06] What a SMARTnership looks like 
  • [8:54] Top 3 negotiation doss and don’ts
  • [11:32] Keld’s unique negotiation illustration

What does a collaborative negotiation look like?

Negotiation isn’t just about reaching a mutual agreement, but about improving collaboration. Keld points out that it’s not about winning something at the cost of the counterparty. The great negotiators don’t set out to be great, they set out to make a difference for their counterpart.

Negotiation is important because revenue isn’t created without it. The second you have to interact with another organization it requires negotiation. Embracing a collaborative negotiation strategy is just as important as a market strategy or a research and development strategy.

Yet many negotiators rely on out-dated tactics that are about winning at all costs. Listen to hear how Keld seeks to change the world of negotiation. 

Negotiate how to negotiate

Keld believes that salespeople don’t necessarily hate the negotiation process, but that they’re “unconsciously incompetent”. They don’t know how to properly negotiate. But once they understand the concept and the value negotiation creates it changes their viewpoint. The 1st mistake salespeople make when negotiation is that they don’t prepare.

A step that Keld believes is imperative is to negotiate on how to negotiate with your counterpart. You can’t walk into a negotiation thinking you’re playing a game of chess when your counterpart believes they’re playing tennis. So how do you remedy that? Keld recommends having a pre-meeting with the sole purpose of learning how to negotiate together.

If you take that small piece of time to make sure you are on the same page in the negotiation process, it removes wasted time. You’re setting the rules for the negotiation to follow and it transforms the process. 

The importance of listening

Keld believes many negotiations fail because too much time is wasted arguing. Too much time is spent on claiming why your product is superior. You must eliminate argumentation and product promotion and instead spend your time listening. Listen for what’s in-between what they’re saying. 

If the prospect asks you if you can deliver a product 2 weeks early, instead of immediately giving a yes or no answer ask: What is the value to you if I can move up delivery time? You need to think about their values and interests in every part of the process. 

Keld says to consider the question: “Are you willing to take a cost if the benefit to the counterpart is bigger than the cost and if the counterpart is willing to compensate you for that cost?” It’s all about figuring out who has the higher value compared to the lower cost. 

Your negotiation strategy should lead to a SMARTnership

Many negotiators embrace “zero-sum” tactics—which is winning at the expense of your counterpart. Instead of landing on a zero-sum strategy, Keld believes you should aim for a high-level collaborative partnership instead. His collaborative negotiation strategy is all about showing a genuine interest in your counterpart and building a relationship.

Keld also points out that up to 42% of the value in a negotiation is often left on the table. To avoid that, you must establish the NegoEconomics—the difference between your value and my cost. This needs to be calculated before engaging in the negotiation process. 

A collaborative negotiation process must involve transparency, openness, and honesty. If you’re honest, you will always leave the table with better results while generating a higher level of trust with your counterpart. If you generate a high level of trust, it reduces transactional costs, and profit tends to increase. 

Keld shares his top 3 dos and don’ts as well as his favorite negotiation story in this episode of Sales Reinvented. Listen to the end to soak up all of the value he has to offer. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Keld Jensen

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jun 10, 2020

Are you aware of how buying personalities influence the negotiation process? And that each different personality changes the direction of your negotiation process? In this episode of the Sales Reinvented Podcast, Sonia Dumas joins me to talk about how buying personalities influence negotiations. 

Sonia Dumas is the Financial Sales Expert with The Sales Experts Channel, a Cryptocurrency Strategist, and a Certified & Licensed B.A.N.K® Trainer. Sonia emphasizes the importance of understanding buying personalities and personality science in the sales negotiation process. Don’t miss her unique insight!

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:06] Sonia’s definition of negotiation
  • [2:07] Why is mastering negotiation important?
  • [3:06] The reasons WHY salespeople hate negotiation
  • [4:39] Sonia’s negotiation process: determining buying personalities
  • [9:24] The attributes a skilled negotiator must embrace 
  • [10:28] Sonia’s simple 5-step negotiation process
  • [11:25] How to determine a prospect’s buying code
  • [13:07] Top 3 negotiation dos and don'ts
  • [15:38] Sonia’s favorite negotiation story

Why we should change the word ‘Sales’ to ‘Influence’

Salespeople don’t love negotiation because they have to do elevator pitches, create countless proposals, answer endless questions in endless meetings, create marketing campaigns, and can chase down indecisive prospects for months. Sonia points out that instead of trying to find new sales tactics, you should focus on fixing your mindset.

What if salespeople stopped calling it ‘sales’ and started calling it ‘influence’? Wouldn’t everyone like to be more influential with their company, clients, prospects, and network? Influence isn’t just a sales tactic, but the fastest path to cash. Sonia also points out that the most effective way to be influential is to know how your clients and prospects make emotional buying decisions

Determining buying personalities should be your FIRST step

Sonia is all about making complex situations simple. Figuring out your prospects ‘buying personality’ or ‘buying code’ should be your first step—that you complete well in advance. There are four main buying personalities: assertive, amiable, expressive, and analytical. It’s far easier to influence people who make buying decisions just like we do. 

However, you must strive to understand the buying language of the other personalities. Once you understand their buying personalities, you can create an agenda and presentation to match their buying personality. You must focus on what’s important to them and tailor thenegotiation to what they need to know AND what they want to hear. This is Sonia’s #1 suggestion to shorten the cycle and get to more yeses. 

How can you determine a prospect’s buying personality? Sonia shares that ‘Crack my Code’ is what she uses to quickly determine buying personalities. A simple 90-second process for the prospect can change the way you negotiate

Sonia’s simple 5-step negotiation process

This is the typical strategy that Sonia follows to prepare and execute a negotiation: 

  1. Calculate buying personalities
  2. Craft an agenda/presentation based on that buying personality
  3. Determine questions to ask to discover if you’re a good fit
  4. Determine what you will say ‘no’ to at any point in the process
  5. Follow up on the negotiation based on their buying code

Per Sonia: “On some deep emotional level a prospect has already said yes to meeting you, yes to reviewing your information, they’ve said yes to involving other stakeholders, yes to revealing their buying code, yes to their emails and the phone calls you’ve made up until now...You have more yeses on your side than you do nos.”

Implementing a strategy based on their buying personality sets you up to create a relationship with a prospect—the revenue will follow. 

Communicate confidence in your products and services

As Sonia shared her lists of ‘dos and don’ts’ she emphasized that you must not come across as needy, desperate, or inferior (or what is referred to as “commission breath”). Prospects can sense that you NEED their business—which gives them the power and leverage in the negotiation. Instead, you must communicate confidence and level the playing field. 

Sonia implores you to focus the conversation with their buying personality in mind. Focus on what is high-value to them while also communicating confidence in your own products and services. They need to understand the massive value that you bring to the table. Providing them with a transformative negotiation experience will be a gamechanger. 

Listen to the whole episode for our in-depth discussion on buying personalities, the negotiation process, and Sonia’s favorite negotiation story. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Sonia Dumas

Connect With Paul Watts 


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Jun 3, 2020

Negotiation preparation contributes to 90% of the success of a negotiation, according to Scott Chepow, today’s guest on the Sales Reinvented Podcast. The better prepared you are before the negotiation commences, the smoother the process will be, and the likelihood of a successful outcome is far higher. To hear more of Scott’s thoughts on negotiation, listen to the whole episode!

Scott Chepow is the Senior Vice President of Engagement Strategy for The Gap Partnership in North America. He works with some of the world’s largest organizations to help them create incremental value through negotiation. His 20+ years of experience in the industry is a welcome addition to this podcast. Don’t miss his take on the negotiation process!

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:46] What is negotiation?
  • [1:35] Why is negotiation important in business?
  • [2:23] Why don’t salespeople like to negotiate
  • [3:30] Scott’s negotiation preparation process 
  • [5:20] The attributes that make a great sales negotiator
  • [6:23] Tools + tactics + strategies Scott implements
  • [9:07] Scott’s top 3 negotiation dos and don’ts
  • [11:46] 8 fundamental types of negotiations
  • [13:48] Scott’s favorite negotiation story

What IS Negotiation?

Negotiation in its simplest form can be described as a buyer wanting to buy and a seller wanting to sell. But Scott points out that it’s far more complex. According to him, negotiation “Orchestrates the creation of value for your organization beyond the sale of your products and services.” 

Every organization has its own priorities—such as capturing more pricing or increasing distribution—that goes beyond the role of price within a construct of a sale. Businesses work diligently to define their drivers and set their priorities. Scott emphasizes that “The ability to negotiate within those drivers to achieve those goals is paramount.”

Negotiation can be uncomfortable

Many salespeople dislike the negotiation process because it’s uncomfortable. So they seek to alleviate that discomfort by rushing through the process. But in reality, the best way to overcome that discomfort is to embrace it: get comfortable being uncomfortable. A negotiation will never go smoothly, so you need to understand the risks that may arise. 

You can mitigate or even prevent those risks with proper negotiation preparation. 90% of the process is strategic preparation for the negotiation. The other 10% is execution and how you behave in the room. To strategically prepare you must understand the people, the nature of the relationships, and the balance of power. Want to hear more? Keep listening!

Negotiation preparation allows you to adapt your skillset

Scott references 14 essential behaviors of a negotiator that you should master. One of them is learning to think clearly and manage discomfort. If you master those skills, you can adapt to any negotiation you walk into. But that takes preparation, research, practice, and learning to understand the variables at play.

What’s important to you? What’s important to your counterparty? What are their pressures and priorities? You have to plan which direction you’ll take when things go wrong. If you have an action plan in place when variables DO arise, you know what to do and are confident that you’re prepared to deal with any realities that arise. 

Model the appropriate behaviors during the negotiation process

As you’re engaging in negotiation preparation, you must understand what type of negotiation you’re walking into and subsequently exhibit the appropriate behaviors. Scott states there are 8 fundamental types of negotiation and uses a clock face to demonstrate: As you work your way from 12-6 on the clock face you’re either bartering, haggling/bidding, hard bargaining, or dealing. 

As you move further around the clock, the relationship deepens as you work through concession trading, finding a win-win, focusing on joint problem-solving, and building a relationship. Different factors dictate where you are on the clock face. 

The level of dependency between the parties, the length and strength of the relationship, the level of trust, and how many variables are at play all move you further around that clock. If you’re in the haggling/bidding phase your behavior tends to be more aggressive, cold-hard, and dismissive. Scott points out that this is likely to be a one-off transaction.

However, if you’re in the “win-win” phase you are looking to be cooperative, collaborative, honest, open, and flexible. This is when you want to deepen the relationship and find a profitable and sustainable deal for both parties. 

To hear more about this process, the importance of negotiation preparation, and Scott’s favorite negotiation story—listen to the whole episode now!

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Scott Chepow

  • Connect on LinkedIn
  • Scott on Twitter
  • Call at 802.734.0717
  • Email Scott: scott.chepow(at)

Connect With Paul Watts 


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May 27, 2020

Do you possess an adequate level of self-awareness? Can you accurately pinpoint where you are weak or could use improvement? Today’s guest on the podcast, Bob Apollo, believes that you must be self-aware to grow and improve—and become more productive. Listen to this episode for an in-depth analysis of productivity and what can help set you apart in the sales world. 

Bob founded Inflexion-Point—a UK-based B2B sales effectiveness consultant group—15 years ago and has a strong global footprint. He is an advocate for creating customer-value throughout every transaction. As an expert in the industry, we are fortunate to have him share that expertise in this episode of Sales Reinvented. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:52] Bob’s definition of productivity
  • [1:44] Why aren’t salespeople productive? 
  • [2:45] Develop a level of self-awareness
  • [4:10] Attributes of a productive salesperson
  • [5:22] Lobby for a more effective CRM
  • [8:05] Top 3 Productivity dos and top 3 don’ts
  • [17:20] A productivity challenge Bob has faced

Developing self-awareness as a foundation for productivity

There are a couple of personality attributes and characteristics that are important to productivity, but Bob points out that cultivating self-awareness is up there at the top. You need to be aware of what you’re doing and the impact and effectiveness of your actions. Without self-awareness, you won’t know what to change and improve.

It is the building block to effectiveness. Once you’re self-aware you can pinpoint your struggles and your weak points and develop a strategy to improve them. You can learn what works and what doesn’t. Self-aware salespeople are more likely to learn from others and grasp new concepts.

The right CRM can make a world of difference

Bob points out what many salespeople feel: the user experience and ROI of a CRM can be pretty disappointing. The vast majority of conventional CRM solutions are built around an administrative metaphor and record activities after the event. They offer no real sense of guiding the salesperson. 

There are many plugins available that try and rectify some of the issues but very few CRM’s that have adjusted. Bob recommends that if you feel your CRM isn’t delivering value, lobby for something better. There are options out there that may be better for you and your sales team—don’t be afraid to push your company for something better

The ability to learn is a key indicator of success

Bob believes that one of the best things you can do to improve yourself is to model your behavior after the most successful salesperson in your company. You must be willing to share your successes and failures with the team. The more successful your team is, the more profitable your business can be. Embrace the idea of collective learning.

But you must also embrace taking responsibility for your personal development. Don’t wait for your company to train you or blame them for your lack of knowledge. You alone are the master of your own destiny, so you must plan accordingly. One way you can do that is by setting up a professional development plan so you remain relevant and successful. 

Some tips and strategies to increase productivity

Bob gave us some tips that are too valuable not to share: 

  • Plan ahead: Don’t start any conversation or meeting without knowing what you want out of it.
  • Be open to fresh ideas: What brought you success in the past won’t necessarily repeat.
  • Focus your energy on value-creating activities: the more value you bring to the client the more likely they’ll be to move forward with your solution. It is a give-get process. 
  • Be strategic with unexpected RFPs: Learn to discern if you’re “column fodder”—as Bob put it—and if you have a chance to actually compete for the bid. Don’t waste your time if you’re the rabbit. 
  • Don’t prescribe before you’ve diagnosed: Really take the time to listen to your client’s needs and pain points—and do not fall into autopilot and start pitching before the time is right. 

Listen to the whole episode as we talk about eliminating sources of error, the greatest productivity challenge Bob has faced, and take a deep-dive into productivity. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Bob Apollo

Connect With Paul Watts 


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May 20, 2020

Time management is something most people struggle with and salespeople are no exception. It can have a huge impact on productivity—so how do you manage your time effectively? How do you become more efficient and productive in the time that you do have? Mark Sellers joins Paul in this episode to share his take—don’t miss it!

Mark Sellers is the Managing Partner and Founder of Breakthrough Sales Performance—which has been operating for 24 years. He is the author of two books, ‘The Funnel Principle’ and ‘Blindspots: The Hidden Killer of Sales Coaching’. He is an executive coach who consults with small to medium-sized businesses to help them improve their sales. Listen to this episode of Sales Reinvented for his insights on productivity. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:59] Mark’s definition of productivity
  • [1:57] Salespeople need to focus on efficiency
  • [3:09] Focus on what is measurable
  • [6:41] Tactics to improve productivity
  • [9:36] What attributes or characteristics should a salesperson have?
  • [11:03] Mark’s weekly strategy: write things down
  • [12:15] The premise of Mark’s book: Blindspots
  • [13:26] Top 3 productivity dos and top 3 don’ts
  • [15:30] How Mark wrote 2 books and built a deck

Productivity is about time management and prioritization

According to Mark, productivity is measured by the function of energy multiplied by the task at hand. In other words, how long does it take you to complete a task? You’re more productive if you get things done in a shorter length of time. But time seems to be what all salespeople are short on—so the goal is to become more efficient with the time you do have.

Mark points out that one way to achieve efficiency is by only investing your time in qualified leads. You can’t continue chasing deals that are dead. You must also prioritize the things that move the needle on sales and achieving quota and everything else is secondary.

Sales managers need to focus on tracking what is measurable—which is why there is such an emphasis on goals, quota, etc. Mark is happy as long as he can see progress is being made towards a goal. But as a manager, you must know how many ‘calories’ your salespeople are burning to reach a goal. If they’re being inefficient, you can help coach them to be more productive and focus on priorities. 

Mark’s tactics to improve productivity

Salespeople need to stop running and reacting—if they can’t sustain their activity level it will catch up to them. To change, they need to plan better. Mark shared some cool strategies:

  1. The 6x6 priority management strategy: Write on index cards the 6 things that are important to you for the next 6 weeks (personally or professionally). You monitor those things for 6 weeks and evaluate your progress at the end. It helps you find focus and clarity.
  2. Practice necessary endings: Get rid of the things in your life that are no longer serving you and are distracting you. 
  3. Write things down: Mark sets aside time each week to write down 3 things: one thing to focus on for clients, one for business, and one for his personal life. He resets them weekly. If he’s nowhere near meeting his goals, he’s likely trying to do too much and adjusts accordingly. 
  4. Get coaching: No matter what level you’re at—be it CEO, sales manager, or sales rep—you can improve your skillset with coaching. Coaches can give us a different viewpoint when we are too close to the action and dealing with blindspots. 

Be sure to listen to hear our in-depth discussion of these topics. 

The attributes a salesperson should have

Mark believes the key to being a great salesperson, in general, is having a good vision. What you’re doing in pursuit of the vision will always move you in the right direction. You simply build your priorities around that vision and pursue them relentlessly. 

A salesperson must also know where they’re going to spend their energy, both personally and professionally. They have to have the ability to discern what to say no to and what opportunities to embrace. You can’t be successful if you say ‘yes’ to everything and end up burned out.

Mark’s tips and tricks to master time-management

Mark has learned a few tricks along the way that he shares in this episode that can help you maximize your time: 

  • Do a monthly funnel audit: It helps you reset your priorities and is a great way to hold salespeople accountable. 
  • Use your calendar for a 30-day plan: Go straight to your calendar and time-block and schedule appointments like you would for a customer or a Dr. appointment. 
  • Write things down: It’s hard to ignore something clearly written in your calendar.
  • Stay organized: Disorganization is the ultimate productivity-killer.
  • Don’t wait until the last minute: You will never produce quality work when you rush.
  • Learn to say no: Avoid taking on more than you can handle. 

Listen to the whole episode for an in-depth discussion on productivity, to hear about how Mark wrote his books, and the best way to knock out tasks. 

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Mark Sellers

Connect With Paul Watts 


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