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Sales Tips From Jonathan London

Salespeople - 23 Selling Tips for 2014

Posted on Fri, Jan 10, 2014

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If you haven’t started already, now is a good time to start planning for 2014. Here are some of the ways to do it and questions to ask yourself:


  1. Do I know where my success came from last year? What did I do to make things happen and be a successful salesperson?
  2. Do I know where I want to put my efforts into this year? Are they the same as last year or different?  Have I created smart goals for myself?
  3. Which of my offerings has real advantages that I should take advantage of?
  4. Are there particular vertical markets or segments that I want to focus on?
  5. What people, sales technology and resources will I surround myself with so I can get help when I need it?
  6. What will I:
    • Continue doing or do more of that is working
    • Stop doing that is in the way of my success
    • Start doing that is needed because of market conditions or opportunities
    1. Who, at work or home do I need to help me stay disciplined enough to the things that are most important?
    2. What have I been putting off that needs to be done?
    3. Have I targeted the accounts I want to sell?
    4. Do I know the one or two that would really put me over the top?
    5. Am I using social media, LinkedIn, blogs, etc. to keep me in touch with the people and events that are critical to my success?
    6. Am I using free services like Google Alerts to do the same?
    7. What support mechanisms do I have to keep balanced?
    8. What is my quick start program so I have a great quarter and make the rest of the year a “little” easier?
    9. Are my manager and I on the same page so he/she supports me vs. interferes?
    10. Can you tell yourself what you are or are not willing to do so you are happy and successful?
    11. Can you identify what motivates you, or like most about your job so you can spend as much time and do it as often as possible?
    12. If your compensation plan is here, do you know how you will make the most money from it?
    13. Do you know your offering inside and out so you can present it in more ways, with more effect than your competition or co-workers?
    14. Can you be more organized and/or effective by being more focused and wasting less time in a day?
    15. Can you identify the 3 or 4 most important priorities for your success?
    16. Can you create an image for yourself of what short and long term success looks and feels like to keep yourself motivated, positive?
    17. What technology will I learn to help me sell more?


      Please let me know if you would like to talk or I can help in any way. I wish you the best, healthiest, most fulfilling 2014.

      Tags: Time Management, Sales, Sales Advice, Sales Tips, Sales Productivity, lead generation, Social Media

      Salespeople, Week Two of 2013 and More Tips...

      Posted on Mon, Jan 07, 2013

       Week Two of 2013  Capture


      It is the second week of the year, (really the first full week) and it may be your first week back.

      Let me go a little bit more in depth with some of the points from last weeks blog, Salespeople, 22 Tips for 2013 -- Another New Year! to help get you started:

      Tip #1:

      Do I know where my success came from last year?

      What did I do to make things happen and be a successful salesperson?

      -      did you prospect more

      -      were you more disciplined in your approach

      -      did you get any sales training that you used well

      -      did you work with your partners (if you have any) more effectively

      -      did you learn your product so well that you could play it like a violin

      -      did you get one big real client and can you do that again this year

      -      did you use your resources better than others

      -      did you just work harder

      Tip #20:

      Can you be more organized and/or effective by being more focused and wasting less time in a day?

      -      If you can give yourself one more hour a day to sell by being more organized, after holidays, etc. you have 5-6 more weeks of selling time. You just gave yourself an extra month or more to make your quota. Not bad.

      -      Here are some questions to ask yourself about wasting time:

      • Do I handle emails well or am I reacting and wasting time
      • Do I qualify requests from customers, prospects and internally regarding when they need something vs. just jumping at the request?
      • Do I delegate and follow up many tasks vs. doing them all myself?
      • Do I have ONE system where I keep notes, to dos, etc?
      • Do I browse the web, Face Book, etc. on unrelated work items during work hours
      • Do I gossip, Twitter, IM too much?
      • Do I qualify appointments as to whether I can do them on the phone vs. in person?
      • Do I use my selling hours to sell and do non-sales tasks at the appropriate time?

      Please let me know if you would like to talk or I can help in any way. I wish you the best, healthiest, most fulfilling 2013.

      Tags: Objection Handling, Resolutions, Time Management, Sales Advice, Sales Training, Sales Strategies, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Closing, Prospecting, Coaching, Sales Productivity, Sales Process, Social Media, technology enabled selling

      Increasing Your Close Ratio

      Posted on Mon, Sep 24, 2012


      Increasing Your Close Ratio

      Towards the end of my vacation (“holiday” for my European friends) in Umbria, I was driving down a long winding road with steep curves and realized if I made a mistake, I could go off the road.

      I know some tricks like pulling on the emergency brake, going into reverse, turning the car off, trying to do a Fred Flintstone with my feet :), but I have never had to use them.

      For some reason it reminded me of my approach and strength as a salesperson. Specifically, I win when I take all the curves properly and don't have significant detours. I am not great at recovering once this happens.

      So what is involved in reinforcing my strength? I think it starts at the beginning in determining which category a sale/deal falls into:

      1. Have no chance of winning – do not pursue – do not waste your time and resources - you will lose.
      2. Have a chance (how much is important) – on a scale of 1-100 do you have over a 50% chance of winning? If so, you can decide to pursue it. Here you have to be good at punching and being a good counter-puncher (someone who is at their best after they are punched). I can do that very well, but once a sale/deal is gone, or the car is going off the road, I don't usually recover and save myself.
      3. Yours to win – full speed ahead – pull out all the stops, etc.  If you lose these sales/deals too often you should consider another career.

      Are you good at recovering a deal? What have you done that works? I would love to hear your thoughts? 

      Click me

      Tags: Sales Skills, Time Management, Sales, Sales Advice, Sales Training, Sales Strategies, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Sales Effectiveness, Closing, Sales Structure

      2nd Half Goals - What Do You Do When You Don't Know What to Do?

      Posted on Tue, Aug 28, 2012

      SMART Goals Fotolia 11872580 XS

      Before we answer that question we should ask why you don’t know what to do? It is probably because you haven’t established your own S.M.A3.R.T. goals which stands for:
      •   Specific
      •   Measurable
      •   Aligned, Agreed, Achievable
      •   Realistic
      •   Timed
      Some examples of S.M.A3.R.T. goals would be:
      •    I want to make X amount of money in the 2nd half of 2012
      •    I want to be x% of quota for Q3 and Q4 2012
      •    I want to be the #1 salesperson for all 2012
      To achieve your goal you need to establish and work your priorities. If you follow these selling techniques or selling skills you will always know what to do (whether you do it or not is up to you). Some examples of priorities to sell more in the 2nd half are:
      •     Learn my new product/s
      •     Learn how to win against my biggest competitors
      •     Get 3 more appointments per week
      •     Close my 3 largest deals
      •     Identify my top 10 accounts – new and existing
      •     Get better at proposals and presentations
      •     Use my executives more to win
      •     Work 2 more hours a day
      •     Sell more of XYZ which is my most competitive product
      •     Use Google alerts to get 3 more appointments per week

      You should only have 3-4 priorities per quarter and these should be re-evaluated each quarter to see if they need to be continued or new ones needed to be added to your sales strategy.

      So if you still don't know what to do if you don't know what to do, just do one of your priorities. If you don't know what they are, or you are stuck, ask somebody for help. Or download the form and use it. You can always email me for help if you like. 


      Click me

      Tags: Time Management, Sales Advice, Sales Strategies, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Sales Effectiveness, S.M.A.R.T. goals and priorities, Sales Productivity, technology enabled selling, sales technology

      If Sales Were an Olympic Event: The Selling Decathlon

      Posted on Thu, Aug 02, 2012

      business hurdle

      I think for the next Summer Olympics we should consider a sales decathlon instead of ballroom dancing. It can be an individual and team sport. Here is how I envision it:

      You could create a decathlon that extends for weeks, where the skills people (individually or in a relay) would compete for in the following categories:
      1.    Time Management
      • How quickly can salesthletes manage the decathlon while handling 200 emails a day, blogging, tweeting and creating proposals.  They will also have to do many of these while running a 10K  and pole-vaulting.

      2.    Territory  and Opportunity Management

      • Which team knows where their sweetspot is and can navigate a territory and its detours, which could be online or actual traffic detours. You would also have to throw a javelin or use a bow and arrow to hit the center of your target.  Participants will need to strategize by entering black holes where all light and information is removed from an opportunity (kind of like a customer not calling back) and navigate their way out of the black hole and back on track.

      3.  Business Acumen

      • Salespeople will run along a similar path as runners or bikers and at different stages will be given questions to answer by different business people.  If they get it correct, they run to the next station and hand off the next question to be answered.  If they drop the question or get it wrong, they have to wait X seconds to get it right or ask another teammate.  This will be a series of 100 meter dashes.

      4.    DiSC and Getting Along with Prospects

      • Each team will be stopped by an official who represents a different DiSC style. They will have to engage in a physical event with them (lifting, pulling or throwing something) and determine which DiSC style they are by how the official interacts with them.

      5.    Prospecting and Gaining Access to Power

      • While running, they will have to text, email or call a prospect and get a meeting using relevant, compelling messaging and social media. They can use an “official Olympic” tablet or smartphone.  Sponsors will go crazy for this event.

      6.    Qualifying and S.PRI.N.G. Dialogue

      • A dexterity and strength test will be given where they have to punch a wall mounted device that will reveal if they have asked the right question in the right way in the right order.  Asking or punching things incorrectly brings a penalty, where doing so correctly, makes the physical task of punching easier. They can also use different size discus instead of punching.

      7.    Presenting Your Solution

      • While juggling several things (pins, balls, oranges) they have to relate their solution to a specific circumstance. They will also have to long jump to engage the judges. To test their dexterity, judges will also be able to throw objects at them which they have to dodge while presenting. The best team will advance to the next round.

      8.    Objection Handling

      • If the object thrown hits the salesthlete, they have to address the objection in a way that the judge puts down other items they are preparing to throw at the participant. Or they have to jump over specific hurdles after they address the objection.

      9.    Closing

      • A salesthlete needs to turn or lift a very heavy object to close the deal. This could be a lifting weights or a steel shutter to show their strength.

      10.    Negotiations

      • The lead salesthlete needs to work with his or her other teammates to persuade the judges that the offer/terms they have made will be accepted. This will be done via a Greco-Roman wrestling match.

      The winning relay team would finish the events in the least amount of time and get a Gold medal, but since they are salesthletes, they would also get some kind of spiff like a 3 day 2 night vacation with their partner or spouse to some exotic location.

      I am accepting applications for the Sales Olympics. Let me know what event you wish to be in and your credentials.  Any ideas for improving the event are also welcome.

      Tags: Objection Handling, Summer Olympics, Sales Skills, Time Management, Sales Advice, Sales Training, Sales Strategies, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Closing, S.PRI.N.G. Dialogue, Prospecting, Territory Management, DiSC Styles, Negotiations, Social Media, technology enabled selling, Presenting

      Salespeople: Am I a Man or Mouse?

      Posted on Mon, Jun 11, 2012

      Am I a Man or Mouse

      In my last blog “Death of a Salesman” I wrote that I would not do things out of neediness nor work with people I don't want to work with. So I am now being tested.

      I have a very large, prestigious opportunity that has screwed around with me twice -- my belief -- after being referred to them by my coach.

      I have a new contact at this account who reached out to me on Friday night -- it is now Wednesday -- to tell me there might be an opportunity since their current vendor’s price is too high. As background, we had a chance to work this spring but she was told by her boss that there was no time to evaluate new vendors. She also told me about 2 weeks ago that this was being pushed back to early August.

      • We agree to talk Tuesday AM but then I get an email asking me if we can speak Tuesday evening at 9PM EST since she will know more then. I say fine since I will be up watching the NBA Playoffs.

      • I get my call at 9 and am told she still knows nothing but will call me Wednesday AM at 8:30 to give me more details. She also tells me she is in NYC, not California where she lives. I suggest we get together since we have never met in person but she says she is too busy (for a cup of coffee or for 15 minutes to meet)?

      • Needless to say I don't get a call at 8:30. I try her but no answer, nor any response to my email about getting together.

      I feel like she wants to do something, but is really powerless. I can’t get entre’ into the powers to be. There have been some peripheral conversations but nothing more.

      1.    tell her thanks but no thanks and I don't want to be considered any longer
      2.    go over her head and make additional efforts to get to the higher level
      3.    send a fish wrapped in newspaper as a warning
      4.    leave it alone and see how it evolves
      5.    send an email to the person, who has been a great coach and ask him what to do.

      Click me

      Tags: Sales Skills, Time Management, Sales, Sales Advice, Sales Training, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Prospecting

      Death of a Salesman

      Posted on Tue, Jun 05, 2012

      Death of a Salesman

      Just saw the final performance by Philip Seymour Hoffman in Death of a Salesman. Very powerful emotional play. Read it when I was a teenager and swore the last thing I would ever be is a salesperson (go figure), and here’s why:

      •     I didn't want to be so needy and dependent on others as Willy Loman

      •     I didn't want to live my life without love from my family

      •     I didn't want to say things to please vs. say what I really mean

      •     I didn't want to base my happiness on how and if others received me or gave me an order

      •     I didn't want to be away so much from my family that we would disconnect

      So here are my Death of a Salesman resolutions to be a better salesperson and human being:

      •     I will say what I want to say in a polite but direct way

      •     I will revel in my capabilities and express myself confidently vs. in a needy way

      •     I will help people because I want and like to

      •     I will try to work only with people I like and there is mutual respect

      •     I will not define my happiness by how many orders I have

      •     If you can’t understand my value to you, I will find someone who does

      •     Being offended or bothered by people being impolite is aligned with needing their confirmation. I won’t be offended any longer.

      •     I will do things I want to do vs. the things I am fearful about not doing

      •     I will have confidence that all will be fine regardless of the outcome

      •     I will travel much less and use technology more

      With these resolutions I will:

      •     do better for people

      •     do an even better job than I already do

      •     be happier and make those around me happier

      •     and make more money

      Nice combination!

        Click me



      Tags: Sales Skills, Time Management, Sales, Sales Advice, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, technology enabled selling

      Time Management: Jonathan London, a Sales Pro Interviews Himself

      Posted on Tue, Apr 10, 2012




       Time Management Self Interview by Jonathan London Time Management:  Jonathan London Interviews Himself

      In interviewing myself on April 9th, Jonathan explored his current state of mind, work habits and time wasters(☞ = question ☝ = answer).

      Jon, what is the biggest time waster for you?

      ☝ The biggest way I waste time is not knowing what I want to get done when I don't have a formal appointment or training class. I have many things that are important and I am constantly aware of:
      • including finishing my book
      • refocusing my business on the NE region and over video
      • getting better at social media
      • working on working out 
      • my finances and more...
      But when I don't have it in my calendar then I wander and I don't feel good wandering. I just read an article in the Sunday Times Sports Section about the goalie for the NY Rangers who follows the same routine so he feels prepared. I need to get back to my routine.

      What prevents you from being more organized and having things in your calendar? What prevents you from having and staying with a routine?

      ☝ Good question to yourself Jon. I have never been good with structure unless I am super motivated. It stems from my childhood but that is for another blog. Perhaps it is having too much to do, or it is not wanting to do what is needed. Maybe I am bored and need a good kick in the pants.  Sometimes, I am better when I have somebody I am accountable to because I am often more responsible to others than I am to myself. Not sure but it doesn't really matter why. What matters is to become the goalie for the NY Rangers : )

      So what should you be doing now vs. what you are doing?

      ☝ I have to write a blog so I am hoping this will become the blog. I am trying to use my own experience as the best way to teach people. I understand that I might be revealing a bit too much about myself but I hope people like that. After this, I have appointments but I think the book is next. BTW, I sent out a LinkedIn request for people to share their best experiences with technology in selling and didn't get the response I wanted. Very disappointing!

      What is the one part about you that you most wish to fix?

      ☝ I am extremely hard on myself and self-critical. If I am wasting one second, it kicks in. So the things I am talking about in this blog probably aren’t as bad as they sound but to me they are.

      So what are you doing today after you write this blog?

      ☝ I have a 9AM appointment to discuss some 1:1 coaching and then I see my accountant, go to my dentist and then have a 4PM and 6PM with a prospect and potential partner. I think I will also try and buy a new iPad but I am not sure.

      Jonathan, thanks for your time and candor!  

      ☝ Any time 

      Click below to get a S.M.A.R.T. Goal Form that will help you stay focused!

      Click me

      Tags: Time Management, Sales, Sales Advice, Sales Training, S.M.A.R.T. goals and priorities, Sales Productivity, Social Media, technology enabled selling