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How to Deal with a Mean Person

balance We hear a lot about violence on television, in the movies, and in video games. When violence is discussed, it’s usually physical violence. USA Today cites a recent study at Brigham Young University that shows that seeing people being mean to others affects us as well.

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Participants responded just as aggressively, no matter what type of aggression they had encountered – be it physical aggression or relational aggression, as the study defined it.

We’ll call the latter mental aggression – seeing people being mean to other people.
We all deal with mean people, or at least people who can be mean from time to time. 

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marylynn Prime example – when I was a Production Director, which means I oversaw commercial production for a group of five radio stations, I implemented a new procedure that some of the sales people didn’t like. I was back in the sales area, with all the sales people in their cubicles, and one decided to call me out. He was rude and confrontational.

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georgeI remember someone we were grooming for management. He seemed to have all the right characteristics. However, when he faced a situation where someone was angry or upset, he only made it worse. As a leader, you have to learn how to diffuse situations, not inflame them.

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How to diffuse a situation

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marylynn Back to my story of being confronted by a sales person in front of the sales staff – it caught me off guard, but I stopped and collected my thoughts. Then I said, “I’d be more than happy to talk with you about this my office. But your sales manager signed off on this procedure. So if you really have a problem with it, I’d suggest you talk to him.

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Get away

When you feel your blood start to boil, get away before you say the wrong thing. If you’re face-to-face, suggest you take up the issue again in a little bit. If you’re on the phone, excuse yourself and let the other person know you’ll need to call them back. Even with e-mail, refrain from being too quick to reply.

Talk it out

Tell a friend, a colleague, or your spouse how upset you are. Get it off your chest, as they say. Let it all out. By talking to someone, you get to say what you’d like to say. Now you can start focusing on how to say it productively.

Write it down

If no one is available to talk to, write it down so you get the cathartic release you need. Don’t do it as a “Reply” just in case you hit the wrong key and the message gets sent!

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georgeWhen I get really upset, I feel sorry for my keyboard. I’m pounding away, but it gets it out of my system rather quickly. Then I get away for awhile. When I come back to it, I’m ready to construct a response that will move things forward.

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Report what happened

Show the other person that you understand their concerns. State it back to them in the way in which they should have stated it. When they know you have heard their concerns, they’re more likely to listen to your response.

Focus on resolutions

A great leader has to meet confrontation head-on, but also must always keep the bigger purpose in mind. Find a way to respond that doesn’t make the other person defensive. Move the conversation’s focus to solutions, not problems. 

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A recent study shows that eighty percent of all employed people want to start their own business. Next time, we’ll see if we can talk you out of it.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Am I Paying My Salesperson Too Much?

Bigg Challenge
Max is a business owner. He hired a salesman about a year ago. Max put him on the same compensation plan that his other sales people were on (a small base salary with an incentive).

The guy has done a phenomenal job. Max’s company is showing record sales and profits, largely due to this sales person. But here’s the problem: this salesman is now making more money than Max.

Max wants to know if he should adjust his salesperson’s compensation.

Bigg Advice
What should you do about this, Max? Here’s what we think …

Nothing!

Here’s why …

Is it costing too much?
It is possible to over-compensate your people. You can’t design a system where a small number of top performers win bigg while the company loses money.

But that’s not the case here. You’re also making more money, Max. So if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

Handle with care
We’ve heard of great sales people who were let go when a situation like this occurred. It does happen. But remember the nursery rhyme about the goose that laid the golden egg?

This sales person is the goose. Handle him with care. Like the old Proverb says,

“Kill not the goose that lays the golden eggs.”

Your bigg payoff
Don’t miss the bigg picture. The bigg payoff for owning a business often isn’t what you make each year. It’s what you make when you sell it.

You’re building an asset whose value is based on the income of the business, sometimes called owner’s cash flow. As your bottom line increases, so does the value of your asset. That’s your bigg payoff.

How you can get paid more
You’re making record sales and profits so you can probably afford to add another salesperson. Before you do, look at your infrastructure and capacity to make sure you can support an additional salesperson.

If you can, then go for it!

There’s a good chance, if you do that, you’ll be the highest paid employee of the company again!

Model this employee
We would suggest cloning, but okay … we won’t go there! 

So try to find someone with traits and characteristics similar to this salesperson. To do that, think about what you know about him.

What industry did he come from, if he came from outside your industry?

What experience did he have?

What education?

Are there any other clues you can get from his background?

If you did a personality assessment as part of your hiring process, what did his look like?

And ask your sales person if he knows anybody who might work out well. Bigg goal-getters know bigg goal-getters.

Thanks Max for sending us your bigg challenge. We wish you bigg success!

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Failure to Do This Harms Relationships

Have you ever had a service company just show up at your door even though they told you someone would call first?

Have you ever had a co-worker promise they would get information to you but then drop the ball?

Have you ever asked a sales person to get back to you on a proposal but then they never did?


What was your impression of that company, co-worker, or sales person when they didn’t follow-through?

It probably wasn’t favorable. You realize that you can’t count on them to do what they say they’ll do.
   
Follow-through: an essential element to building your personal brand.
A brand carries with it the promise of expected benefits. Every time a promise is not delivered, the brand suffers.

Promises are easy to make, but not as easy to keep. But if you want to build trust, you have to make good on your promises.

“Say what you’ll do, then do what you say.” Author unknown
 
This separates people who achieve bigg things from people who don’t. Even if it’s just a little thing, you risk leaving the impression that you don’t follow through.

We often have the best of intentions, but it’s impossible to judge someone on their intentions. So we do the only thing we can do – we base our opinions of people on whether they deliver on their promises.

Be careful not to over-promise.

If we surprise someone, we should surprise them in a good way – by doing more than we say we’ll do. It’s not good to disappoint them by doing less than what we say … or not doing it at all.

Today’s bigg action item – Develop a system to record every promise you make.

Do whatever works for you, whether that is an old paper system or something using new technology.

One simple way to do this is Jott. Whenever you make a promise, just call and leave a message about what you need to do. Jott will send you an e-mail or text message reminder. That coupled with your personal calendar can keep you on track. Here’s the best part – Jott is a FREE service.

There are two keys to making any system like this work:

  • Budget a little extra time after each activity.
    This will allow you to write down or record anything you promised.
  • Make it a habit.
    Really focus on using your system every day for the next two weeks.

Or you could do what George does. Mary-Lynn reminds him of his promises. Speaking of which, he has to go pick up the dry cleaning that was ready last week!

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I Want to Supplement My Retirement Income. Any Suggestions?

Bigg Challenge
Dorothy is preparing to retire. She was recently presented with an opportunity by a network marketing company. She says she is a people person, but not a sales person. It makes her nervous, asking people she knows to buy something. She would, however, like to supplement her pension and social security checks somehow. She wants to know if we could offer some suggestions.

Bigg Advice
We followed up with Dorothy to find out what she really likes to do. She said there are a lot of things she likes to do, but most of them don’t pay. For example, she’s an animal lover, often volunteering at the local animal shelter.

Our first suggestion is to go with what you love – what you’ll do even without pay.

Before we get to that, though, let’s look at the sales opportunity you have. Do some market research by talking to five people you know. Tell them about the idea you’re considering and see what they say. You’re not selling them … you’re asking their opinion.

See how that goes before you invest any money upfront or commit to any ongoing fees. Then make a decision.

Now let’s explore some other options.


Pet sitting service

Why not start a business that fits your love of animals?

Many people think of their pets as part of the family. When they’re away, they want their pets to be well cared for at home. They need a trustworthy, pet-loving person to take care of their pets.

Start a pet sitting service to meet this need. It’s a simple little side business that’s in great demand. Print up some cards that promote your service. Contact veterinarians you know that don’t offer boarding to see if they would allow you to leave your cards on their counter or bulletin board.

It’s definitely a word-of-mouth business so you won’t have to spend a lot of money to get work.

Related links

Pet Business Startup Guide

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The Professional Pet Sitter 

Pet Sitting for Profit 

 

House sitting service
Here’s a way to double down on the pet sitting idea. Make more money by combining your pet sitting service with a house sitting service. People who travel want to know someone they trust is watching their homes. You can market this service to the same people whose pets you care for.

Errand service

There’s a growing demand for errand services (sometimes referred to as a concierge service). People just don’t have the time to get everything done. That’s where you come in – run their errands for them. You may drop off and pick up their dry cleaning, shop for gifts, and any number of other things.

Market your service at the same places where people are running errands. Once again, start-up costs are low and word-of-mouth is key.

Related links

Personal Concierge / Shopper Business Startup Guide

The Concierge Manual 

Start Your Own Personal Concierge Service 

 

Thanks, Dorothy for sending us your bigg challenge. We wish you bigg success!

Our bigg quote today comes from Francoise De Motteville:

“The true way to render ourselves happy is
to love our work and find it in our pleasure.”

So find pleasure in your work, and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

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Increase Your Sales by Knowing the Answer to this Question

You’re probably familiar with the old saying, “Sell the sizzle, not the steak.”

And a related one, “Features tell, benefits sell.”

Features, of course, are the characteristics of whatever it is you’re trying to sell. Benefits answer your customer’s biggest question, “What’s in it for me?”

If you want to make more money, it’s important to clearly understand the difference between features and benefits.

When you’re selling anything – your product or service, yourself for a job, a loan, or even to get a date this weekend – focus on emotions, not intellect.

Because people buy emotionally, and then justify rationally. People buy for two reasons – to stop the pain or to get the gain.

So paint a clear picture in your prospect’s mind of how wonderful things will be after they buy what you’re offering. To do that, you have to clearly understand the benefits of what you’re selling. And that’s not as easy as it sounds! We usually make two mistakes:

Mistake #1: Spending too much time on features and too little on benefits.
We know our product inside and out. The problem is we often don’t fully understand the difference between a feature and a benefit. We often think of features as benefits. But they’re not. We need to translate those features into benefits – how they help the customer.

Mistake #2 – Stopping before the real benefit.
Fortunately, there’s a simple question that helps you get to the real benefit of your offering. That question is …

“And that means?”

On the show, George and Mary-Lynn illustrated this by pretending to work for an insulation contractor. George played the part of the sales person and Mary-Lynn was his manager.

Isn’t that an exciting service to sell? See if you’re more excited after the discussion!

Mary-Lynn: Alright, let me hear your pitch.

George: Inadequate insulation is a leading cost of energy waste in many homes.

Mary-Lynn: And that means?

George: Your furnace and air conditioner will run more.

Mary-Lynn: And that means?

George: You may be spending too much on your utility bill.

Mary-Lynn: And that means?   

George: You could save money by adequately insulating your home!

Mary-Lynn: And that means?

George: You would have more money to do what you want!

Mary-Lynn: And that means?

George: If you insulate your home, you’ll pay for their next vacation!

Mary-Lynn: Bingo! Now that’s the real benefit!

Are you more excited about insulation now? Most people are! Even a product that seemingly has little sex appeal can be quite appealing!

So keep asking “and that means” until you get to the real benefit. The benefit for you is your sales will grow …

… and that means you’ll live the bigg life!

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Our bigg quote today comes from Dale Carnegie, who said:

“There is only one way … to get anybody to do anything.
And that is by making the other person want to do it.”

And that means – find the one thing that they really want that you can offer, and then show them how to get it.

Next time, we ask, “Are you smart enough to say it simply?” Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Making the Most of Every Contact

By Bigg Success Staff
05-22-08

Bigg Success in Sales

grand_prix 

There’s a small portion of the tire on a race car that actually makes contact with the race track. It’s called the contact patch. Racing crews do everything they can to get a good contact patch because it’s one of the more important factors in winning the race.

As a sales person, you also have a contact patch. You spend a small portion of all your time in front of your prospects. What happens in those moments is essential to making the sale.

However, what happens in those moments is dependent on what you do before you get to them. Preparation is what makes the difference. You need to be sure you’re ready when the opportunity presents itself.

You’ll succeed when product knowledge, prospect knowledge, and people skills meet.

Product knowledge
You need to fully understand the features and, more importantly, the benefits of your product. But don’t stop there. You also need to fully understand the features and benefits of your competitors’ products.

And when we say “competitors”, we mean every alternate way your prospect might meet their need. It goes beyond people who do exactly what you do. You also need to understand what substitutions your prospect could make for your product.

Prospect knowledge

What problem do you solve for your prospect? Find a problem your prospect wants to solve and show them how to solve it. In order to do that, you’ll need to do some research on your prospect.

Problem-solving is a case-by-case thing. One prospect may be experiencing difficulties that another one isn’t. If you take the time to find the unique needs of a unique prospect, and then offer them a unique solution, you’ll make the most of every contact.

People skills

You also need to develop the people skills necessary to communicate your message and understand what the prospect is saying. And not saying. Learning how to read non-verbal cues is an essential art of being a great sales person.

So listen as much as you talk. Question your prospect to make sure you fully understand their responses. Watch them to see what they’re not saying with words. Then use your product knowledge, your prospect knowledge, and your people skills to make the sale!  

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

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