Once a month, I took a break from sales meeting content creation and got my salespeople to chip in for “Show and Tell.”
It is far easier to get a new audience than to come up with a new speech.
I learned that at my first National Speakers Convention.
One year, I managed to speak to 130 different audiences on three continents. I had just two presentations in repertoire.
Before that, though, when I was the local sales manager at WISM-AM and FM, I had to come up with a new sales meeting every week and give it to the same old audience.
Alas, there was no Instant Sales Training website from which to grab suitable content.
So I read a lot and came up with my own stuff.
Except . . .
. . . I didn’t plan one sales meeting per month. That’s when I took a break from content creation and got my salespeople to chip in. It was the “Show and Tell” sales meeting.
Each month one salesperson had to bring a customer to the sales meeting. That customer would brief us on his or her business.
Show and tell.
Before the meeting I asked each salesperson to write down at least two questions to ask the business owner. That way, I could be sure the meeting would last 45-minutes to an hour.
The business owner showed up. The salespeople asked questions, listened and took notes.
I did very little. Letting others learn to lead is a form of leadership after all.
One of those meetings still sticks in my mind. A young salesperson, Rodney, brought his customer, Rupert Cornelius, to our sales meeting. Rupert was a successful retailer in Madison, WI. He owned several clothing stores on State Street. And he was a big advertiser.
Rodney got to ask the first question. He asked Rupert, “How do you decide what to advertise on our Radio stations?”
“I put things on display and watch what items are selling all by themselves with no advertising. Then I advertise those items. Why would I take things that aren’t selling, mark them down and advertise them? I want to spend my money advertising things people want instead of paying your high rates to advertise my markdowns. Your radio stations reach thousands of people who would never walk by my store and look in my window. I want to let them know that we have these sought after items.”
Rupert built belief in my salespeople and gave them some great insight into how a successful businessman (and advertiser) thinks.
In less than an hour, my sales team was armed with advice from a respected retailer that they could share with their prospects and clients.
“Here’s how Rupert Cornelius selects merchandise to advertise. He briefed us this week in our sales meeting.”
After a few months, Rodney left us and went to work selling for WBBM-AM and FM in Chicago. He is currently the VP and Market Manager for CBS Radio. The people you hire, develop and help make successful are an important part of your legacy.
Speaking of your legacy, I trust these Instant Sales Training sessions and blog posts will enhance and expand it.