Category Archives: Victor Arocho

Pump Up the Volume: Create the Soundtrack of Your Sales Career

By Victor ArochoVictor Arocho

All salespeople know that making a sale involves much more than a simple conversation with a prospect. In fact, the number of things the average salesperson has to do to close a deal can be staggering. There’s prospecting, information-gathering, research, cold and warm calling, sending emails and traditional marketing materials, doing pitches and demos, performing follow up, and a host of other activities. As a result, it’s easy for salespeople to get burned out and unmotivated.

But success in any type of sales environment depends on having the proper mindset, and that includes being motivated, inspired, educated, and pumped up to perform all aspects of the sales cycle—even the parts you don’t like. So how do top salespeople keep the proper mindset to continually outperform their peers? Often, it all comes down to the messages they feed their brain.

Let’s face it. Success in sales is 90% mental. If you can keep your mindset positive and stay motivated to do the things you need to do every day, you’ll not only make more sales, but you’ll also enjoy doing it. If you’re ready to take your sales career to the next level, then it’s time to create your personal sales success soundtrack. Following are the three elements to include in your soundtrack so you can stay motivated and sell more.

Music to Motivate: Realize that music is much more than just background noise. Studies conducted by sports psychologists have determined that music has a great impact on an athlete’s performance level. In fact, Dr. Costas Karageorghis, a sports psychologist at Brunel University, found that synchronous music (music that has a clear and steady beat) elevates a person’s performance by 20 percent, whereas asynchronous music (melodic background music) calms the nerves of people by as much as 10 percent. If the right kind of music can help improve athletic performance (which also requires a lot of mental stamina), it can certainly help improve sales performance as well.

Therefore, create a playlist for all aspects of the sales cycle. For example, prior to a prospecting meeting, listen to “Let’s Get It Started” by The Black Eyed Peas. When you’re about to do demo or a sales pitch, listen to Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger.” Immediately after closing a sale, listen to “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO. And when you’re feeling low and unmotivated to do anything, listen to Eminem’s “Lose Yourself,” a song about putting your best self out there, being a serious risk-taker, and overcoming your fears of failure. Pick a few songs that motivate you for each aspect of the sales process and listen to those songs at the appropriate time so they anchor you in the moment.

Stay Inspired: Staying motivated is certainly important, but sometimes you just need some inspiration to keep your spirits high. This is when listening to uplifting stories, religious and spiritual verses, or inspirational quotes can help. Inspirational stories and messages give you mental discipline and can help you sort out tough business challenges by giving you a fresh perspective.

You can find many inspirational books in audio format so you can listen to them on the go, as many salespeople are these days. You can even find many “classic” inspirational sales messages in audio form from well known greats like Zig Ziglar, Tony Robbins, and Dale Carnegie. The options for inspirational messages are virtually limitless.

Educate Yourself Often: Would you want to send your loved one to a doctor who graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1971 but who hasn’t done any continuing education since then? Of course not! You’d want a doctor who not only went to a prestigious school, but who also stays abreast of the latest medical innovations and technologies. Your clients expect the same level of continuing education from the salespeople they work with.

But sales education doesn’t always come from a classroom. For busy salespeople, education can come from listening to “how to” type sales trainers, tuning in to business radio and podcast programs, and downloading audio books on sales and general business topics.

And when it comes to educating yourself, remember that not everything is digital. One good technique is to listen to an audio book and read the printed book at the same time. As you hear things that resonate with you, you can highlight it in the printed version and bookmark certain pages you want to reread later. The key is to never stop learning. Experience can’t always come to you; sometimes you have to go out and seek it.

Winning the Greatest Game of All: The sales profession can be stressful and challenging…but it can also be rewarding and profitable. No matter what you sell, you have to be able to respond to clients and be spontaneous. You have to be able to think outside your box and be able to add value. It’s definitely a profession that requires sharp mental agility, so that means you have to continually keep your mind in tiptop shape. When you listen to music, inspirational messages, and educational subjects on a daily basis, you’re keeping your mind well-fed and well-rounded so you can always be at the top of your game. And that’s where you’ll find the real success and profits in your sales career.

Victor Arocho is an executive coach, speaker and managing partner with Potential Sales & Consulting group.  He specializes in exponentially growing sales by bringing accountability to the sales process and crafting a sales culture of success. His numerous career highlights include tripling a publicly traded organization’s profits within 24 months. With his passionate and strategic style of sales, Victor has assisted others in growing their business and achieving their revenue potential. To learn more about Victor, please visit victorarocho.com.

Make Your Sales Team an Elite Sales Force

By Victor ArochoVictor Arocho

In every sales team, there are usually a handful of top performers…and then there’s everyone else. Imagine how much more successful your organization could be if every salesperson was an elite top performer. Think that’s not possible? Think again.

In other areas, we see groups of elite people who band together for a common goal or purpose: Super Bowl teams, Navy SEALs, top-rated college marching bands, etc. In any of these groups, you don’t see one or two people doing all the work, outperforming their peers, or being the lone superstars. Rather, everyone on the team is an elite member. The group as a whole shines because each member contributes greatly, plays an integral part, and gives 110% at all times. If it’s possible with these groups of people, then it’s possible for your sales department as well.

But creating an elite group of salespeople involves much more than placing a help wanted ad on a job board. It requires a specific hiring process that attracts only the best of the best. Here are the steps to do that.

Make joining your sales team difficult: You cannot create an elite team if becoming a member is easy. Would a Super Bowl team be spectacular if they let anyone with a helmet on the field? Of course not. In order for any team be considered elite, there must be a stringent process to join the team.

So while you should definitely advertise open sales positions, realize that conducting one interview prior to bringing someone on board is not enough. Rather, you’ll want to conduct multiple interviews, with the candidate speaking to the sales manager and other executive level people. The key is to look for people who believe in a team spirit, have a positive attitude, and display a keen sales demeanor. Whatever you do, don’t have your HR department be responsible for hiring salespeople. HR’s only role in hiring salespeople should be to process the paperwork.

And finally (and perhaps most important), make sure anyone you decide to bring on board realizes that getting past the initial hiring process is the easy part. Now they must prove that they have what it takes to be an elite player. How? By completing step number two…

Create a six-week intense new hire training program where no more than 60% pass: For every three people who make it past your initial hiring process, only one of those should actually become a salesperson for your organization. While this may initially sound like a waste of time and money, it’s really an investment in making your sales team the best it can be.

Realize that the only time you really waste time and money is when you allow low producing salespeople (typically people who are not a fit for sales, people who don’t like your company, or people who have the wrong attitude) to be a part of your organization. The best way to avoid that scenario is to make sure the people who are in the sales role have been thoroughly trained and are the people who really want to be there.

Having an intense training period is the same approach used by colleges and the military. For example, for every 100 men who start Navy SEAL training, only 17-20 succeed. That’s a success rate of only 17% to 20%! But think about it…who do you want carrying out the country’s most dangerous and most critical military missions? Only the best of the best, right? Well, who do you want being the face of your company, representing your products or services, and interacting daily with your clients? Again, only the best of the best will do.

Your intense training program should cover the following key things:

  • Product knowledge – Go over your products or services thoroughly to ensure the prospective salesperson comprehends them inside and out.

  • Role-playing – Go over typical sales scenarios as well as the most challenging sales situations you can think of. See how the person responds when things go wrong.

  • Sales skills – Even if the person has prior sales experience, you want to give them all the skills and training they’d need to be successful, and then make sure they know how to implement the skills.

  • Company structure – Teach them all the parts of the business. Train them on every department so they know the intricacies of the business and understand what happens both before and after the sale is made.

  • Research – Put them through the tedious information gathering work. Make them research the market, demographics, competition, etc. If they’re not willing to do the details, then they’re not a fit your company.

This intense process will weed out the people who don’t have what it takes to be part of an elite team. In fact, about 20% of the people will drop out by week four. For the ones remaining at the four-week mark, offer them a choice to stay or go, as in: “I’ll give you $1,000 right now for you to leave the training and the company, or you can elect not to take the money and stay.” Those who take the money aren’t the type of people you want on your elite team. It’s better to pay a small price now to find that out than waste a lot of money down the road with a bad hire.

By the six-week mark, only 60% of those who started should still be standing strong with you. These are your elite sales team members. (And if you have more than 60% of the people making it through the training, then your training is too easy. Anything that’s too easy has no value.)

Have consistent, ongoing (monthly) training: While the intense training period is a one-time thing, all salespeople should attend regular (less intense) monthly training sessions. During these sessions, do role-playing, train on specific sales skills, and find out any specific challenges your team is facing.

It’s also a good idea to use these ongoing training sessions to create bonding experiences for the sales team. Have them help each other solve problems, offer suggestions, and share best practices. Why? Because the goal is to continually develop a team, not an individual. As Tecumseh, the Shawnee Indian Chief, said, “A single twig breaks easily, but a bundle of twigs is strong.” By bringing your salespeople together monthly, you’re creating a strong and elite sales force that can’t be broken.

To Be the Best, Recruit the Best: Sales isn’t an easy profession. So joining an elite sales team shouldn’t be easy either. That’s why you need to shift your focus from filling a sales position to building an elite sales force. After all, your sales team really is the face of the company. Shouldn’t only the best of the best be representing your brand? The sooner you take this approach to building your sales department, the sooner your company’s sales (and profits) will grow.

Victor Arocho is an executive coach, speaker and managing partner with Potential Sales & Consulting group.  He specializes in exponentially growing sales by bringing accountability to the sales process and crafting a sales culture of success. His numerous career highlights include tripling a publicly traded organization’s profits within 24 months. With his passionate and strategic style of sales, Victor has assisted others in growing their business and achieving their revenue potential. To learn more about Victor, please visit victorarocho.com.

Is Your Company Delivering on Its Sales Promises?

By Victor ArochoVictor Arocho

Any sale—from the smallest consumer item to the largest enterprise-wide solution imaginable—is about much more than simply providing a product or service. A sale is really about delivering a promise to the customer. Unfortunately, many companies have no idea what their sales promise is. Sure, they may have a company vision or a mission statement, but those things usually don’t address the specific processes the company uses to deliver value to its customers.

A true sales promise goes way beyond a tangible deliverable. It’s about the customer’s interaction with your company throughout the sales cycle. It’s a sense that everyone from every department is aligned on customer satisfaction. It’s about the service and interaction with the company after the sale. It’s about making customers feel confident that your company as a whole—not just a single product, service, or salesperson—can deliver the results the customer wants…and exceed expectations.

In essence, it takes every single department to fulfill your company’s sales promise. When you actively define the promise you want to make to your customers, and then make sure everyone in the company knows what that promise is, you can deliver on your promise and exponentially grow your sales.

So, what’s your company’s sales promise? Following are some suggestions for making sure your sales promise is crystal clear.

Define your promise to your customers: In order to deliver on a promise, you first have to know what the promise is. Get the various departments together and ask them, “What do we want our customers to experience as a result of working with us? What do we want our promise to be?” Then listen to the issues or expectations each department brings up.

Having this conversation in a group format with the various departments represented is crucial, because people need to see how the different departments work together to deliver on the promise. Of course the billing department wants to send out accurate invoices and reminders, the engineering department wants to create workable solutions, and the shipping department wants things shipped on time. But if no one sees how their process impacts another department’s process, then the process as a whole will break down…along with the sales promise.

Therefore, after you define the promise in general terms, pay attention to the small details of the promise. Look at everything, including customer callback times, product turnaround times, billing cycles, shipping times, customer service follow-up, etc. Be specific. Simply saying, “We promise to call customers back quickly” is not specific. What is quickly? One hour? Four hours? Two days? Without the details defined, it’s easy to break the sales promise.

Provide ongoing training about the sales promise: Once you have the promise defined, provide ongoing training to each team member on what the sales promise means and how everyone in the company can work together to deliver on the promise. Educate all new hires with the premise and details of the sales promise, and ensure that current employees are always on board with the message.

Also, make sure everyone in every department can clearly communicate what the company’s sales promise is and how they and their department play a role in fulfilling that promise. Make it clear that everyone—accounting, shipping, R&D, customer service, and every area in between—is responsible for fulfilling some part of the sale and impacting some aspect of the customer’s experience.

Finally, as part of the training, ensure that everyone understands it’s their job to hold each other accountable for delivering on the promise, and train them on how to do so. Remove the corporate silos, where departments operate in a vacuum, and train people how to communicate across department lines so they can all work together to ensure that the sales promise gets delivered to every single customer.

Promote the sales promise to customers in a broad and global way: With all the details worked out and everyone in alignment with the company’s sales promise, it’s time to communicate that promise to customers. But customers don’t need or want to know all the detail work you’ve just done. They simply want all those details to flow smoothly as they interact with you.

A good sales promise from a customer’s perspective is something broad and global—something that resonates with people. Perhaps all the detail work you’ve just created gives customers “the easiest shopping experience ever” or “the best casual dining atmosphere” or “the latest technology innovations simplified.” Whatever your promise is, promote it in a way that speaks to what the customer truly wants. With that broad and global sales promise being promoted, employees will then be empowered to use the newly-created processes to go above and beyond to exceed the customers’ expectations.

For example, Southwest Airlines has a sales promise to get you where you need to go on time. To fulfill that promise, they have many internal processes created. Additionally, everyone in the organization knows the promise and their role in fulfilling it. When a plane is at risk of being late, you’ll see everyone—even pilots—pitching in, loading baggage, and doing what they can to get the plane out on time. That’s the power of a unified sales promise.

A Promise for a Profitable Future: When the people within your company focus on the fact that everyone in every department is involved in the sales process, creating and living by a sales promise is much easier. So if you want to grow sales and create a following of raving fans who are eager to do business with you, get started on your sales promise today. Remember, the sale is just the start; the promise is ongoing.

Victor Arocho is an executive coach, speaker and managing partner with Potential Sales & Consulting group.  He specializes in exponentially growing sales by bringing accountability to the sales process and crafting a sales culture of success. His numerous career highlights include tripling a publicly traded organization’s profits within 24 months. With his passionate and strategic style of sales, Victor has assisted others in growing their business and achieving their revenue potential. To learn more about Victor, please visit victorarocho.com.