My long time mentor, Andy Andrews, started an online coaching club called Unshakable Entrepreneur a year or so ago which has turned out to be a great and positive influence in my life. Part of the platform includes periodic special “expert” guests where Andy interviews them via Skype. Once the interview is complete, it’s posted to our member site to view at our convenience.
Now there have been some pretty talented guests, but in terms of impacting my life, none can compare with Joe Pici from back in February of 2017. Joe and Andy were long time friends from years ago where they were affiliated in a direct sales company. They had gone their separate ways and had lost touch with each other until good fortune brought them back together in late 2016.
When the interview with Joe was posted, I didn’t actually watch it for several days. I didn’t know Joe from “Adam” and there was no particular sense of urgency. When I did watch it, it was so good, I watched again back to back. Joe is a master salesman and sales tactician. He’s a specialist when it comes to strategy, branding, value propositions, dealing with different personality types, and bottom line booking business.
At the end of the interview Joe mentioned a free e-book download that he was offering to all of the coaching club members. I immediately downloaded the e-book and looked forward to learning more from this very interesting man. Within about 5 minutes of saving the e-book to my lap top, my phone rang with a number from Florida. At that time, I was working for a company where my boss was based in Florida and my first thought was that he was calling me from a different number than his cell…which is the norm.
While my mind was expecting my boss, I still answered the phone with my standard greeting for an unidentified number, “This is Kelly”. Instead of hearing my boss’s familiar voice, I hear “This is Joe Pici, is this a good time? My mind did a massive double take. Joe Pici? You mean the Joe Pici I just listed to for the past hour? What do I owe the pleasure? Joe’s response was that he was calling to thank me for downloading his e-book and was just touching base to see if there was anything he could do for me.
Wow! It was a very surreal moment. I felt like I was talking to a celebrity of sorts and for him to call me direct, was pretty cool. We talked at length about Andy’s coaching club and my involvement and then shifted to my career. At the time I was working as a manufacturers rep where new business development was a big part of my job. Joe’s a straight shooter to say the least and I shared with him that I was struggling somewhat with the business model I was operating in.
He asked if I had ever had any “formal” sales training and my answer was no. I’ve read a ton of books, listened to a load of audio books, and watched a zillion videos but never participated in any formal training. He positioned some resources that he and his wife Dawn offer and I was intrigued. Then as a next step, he sent a formal proposal with pricing for the event I was most interested in…a 3 day sales boot camp in Orlando, FL coming up in May of 2017.
Once I received the proposal, the investment was doable and from our conversation, I really believed it could help. One thing I’ve learned is to never make any major decisions, especially when $ is involved without personal prayer and seeking counsel from a few trusted mentors. Within a few days, I came to the decision to move forward with making the trip to Orlando to train with Joe & Dawn.
As I said before, Joe is a master salesman and he had “sold” me on his boot camp. If he was just the average executive trainer, I might not have heard from him again until shortly before the boot camp when he promised to send a packet of homework to do in preparation for the event. But Joe is FAR FROM AVERAGE.
He called me several times a week from the moment I committed to Orlando all the way up to the morning I boarded my plane. He shared and encouraged and counseled and truly took an interest in me. And remember, he already had my money. I had paid in full upfront. He didn’t have to spend another minute with me on the phone…but he did and my life will never be the same as a result.
I flew in Sunday afternoon and made it to the hotel by about 4PM. After checking in and getting settled into my room, I went to meet “Joe”. He was “holding court” with several of the other attendees in the meeting room where we would kick off the next morning. After three months of countless phone calls, I felt like I already knew him and yet it was great to finally meet in person. We visited for a bit and then went our separate ways for the evening with Joe heading back to his home in Ocoee, FL.
I’ve always been a morning person and my day starts with Bible study & coffee before heading off to the gym. Florida was no exception and as I left my room to head to the hotel’s little fitness center, I was surprised to find Joe already in the meeting room that first morning doing what he does…booking business.
We talked each morning, just the two of us, and it was a unique and special time. It’s not that he was giving me any sort of special treatment. There was just no one else crazy enough to be up at that time of the morning and I was just thankful for the opportunity to soak in more of his wisdom.
The boot camp was awesome and Joe & Dawn did an amazing job. They basically tag-teamed us for the three days playing off of each other’s unique strengths. To save this post from being excessively long, I will just touch on the highlights. The following are the basic topics covered:
- Understanding Behavioral Styles & Rapport Mastery
- Value Propositions
- Scripting & Phone Skills
- The Sales Cycle
- “Live” outbound phone calls (yes really)
- Lead Generation
- Priority Management
The days were long and the info left me feeling like drinking from a fire hose. We did seriously make outbound live phone calls for about 90 minutes on the morning of the third day. Joe absolutely walks his talk and makes “many” phones calls every day. As we scattered ourselves around the hotel, Joe made his rounds coaching each individual as they “dialed for dollars”. I managed to book an appointment with a huge opportunity back in Dallas and was shocked with the success. Let’s just say I used a different methodology than anything I’ve ever used in my previous efforts…and it worked amazingly well.
While I took pages of notes and learned many lessons, I want to highlight the two most impactful for your benefit:
Behavioral Styles & Rapport Mastery:
I had some prior background experience with the DISC personality profile having taken the test years ago and having studied a couple of different resources covering the material. That all paled in comparison to what I would learn from Joe & Dawn. They are both certified DISC trainers and offer a separate training course on just DISC alone.
The first critical piece is know who you are and understand your “view” of the world based on your personality blend. Only then can you effectively deal with others. The second step is to learn all the different behavioral styles and their various nuances. This all takes time and practice but it is well worth it and will take your communication skills to a much higher level than you will ever achieve otherwise.
Quite simply, if you don’t understand your style and the “language” the other person speaks, how can you be sure your message is hitting home? If you don’t understand your style and the other person, you might as well be speaking two different languages to each other because that’s how far off you can miss the mark. I really can’t overemphasize how big a difference this will make in your life and career regardless of what you do for a living.
Many people in sales introduce themselves more by who they are, the company they work for, and their title in general. Bob Smith, Account Manager, with ABC company is a great example. Unfortunately when Bob introduces himself as such, it tells little to nothing of the value he offers to his clients.
People are more busy today than ever before thanks to our technologically overloaded world. In some cases you may only have one shot to make a good connection and you will raise your odds substantially by leading with the value you offer rather than just your name and title. Honestly, the customer is mostly only interested in how you can help them. Until you’ve established a significant relationship…which takes time, they really don’t care about you and your company.
It may seem like a small shift, but the impact will be huge. This is especially true with business development activities like making outbound cold calls. Your value proposition will always get you much farther than just your name and title.
Closing thoughts for my readers:
If you’re in sales and you’re not selling as much as you would like, then I highly recommend Joe & Dawn. Their sales boot camp is a game changer. Further if you have any interest in becoming a speaker or trainer or executive coach, their speaker boot camp is a game changer as well. Their client coaching list is a literal “Who’s Who” of companies on a national basis, and they have done keynotes literally around the world so they truly live every aspect of what they teach.
Dawn is among the top 10 most followed women on LinkedIn. She is a LinkedIn specialist and “rock star”! If you have any doubts about your profile and how to use LinkedIn to build your business, Dawn’s private training is a must. She uses Skype and will walk you through the process of revamping your profile as needed and then teach you how to leverage the LinkedIn platform to drive your business.
As a Christian, it was refreshing to me to discover how much in alignment Joe & Dawn are with me in our faith. They are solid people with huge hearts and I can’t thank them enough for the positive impact they’ve had in my life.
Periscope: Monday evenings at 7PM Central time – Joe Live
Facebook: Thursday mornings at 9AM Central time – Dawn Live