Ice Melting Lines

ice melting

Have you ever felt a little awkward after that first five seconds of an initial sales conversation? Using those “Hey, how you doing?” mundane type of initial phrases that lead to you just talking over your prospect and not making a quick connection. I hear and see it all the time!

Everyday initial conversations starters DO NOT work in the selling world, and DO NOT forward your sales conversation. If you’re wondering why you’re not growing, as you should be in sales, this may help you break through. Shake things up a bit. Make your lead in phrases you!

Where do we start?

Bring your personality into it…literally your personality!

Examples:

  • “Hey is this John Smith? Great, do you have 79 seconds for me really quickly?”
  • “John, I’ve been trying to catch you for months I literally thought you were    kidnapped man, were you kidnapped?”
  • “Hey John, this is Dave, are you ready for this?”
  • “John, how is your office staff running over there today? (don’t let them respond) Who’s winning, you or them?”

Shake things up then lead into what you are doing and what you’re calling about. You’re melting away the tension that could exist when you use those icebreaking lines that can immediately connect you with your prospect because you’re different. If you are a prospecting master, you are an “ice-melter” with these types of initial phrases!

Let me leave you with your prospecting golden nugget for the week…

When prospecting, be YOU. Nobody in this world has your design. Daily you choose to cater to the world, or make it your masterpiece. Make it your masterpiece when you are prospecting today. Get out there and melt the tension, use your ice melting lines to get in and connect with your prospect quickly.

What are some of the ice melting lines you have used? Tweet them to me @davebrown_swc #meltingtheice #southwesternconsulting

Being Positive vs. Positive Self-Talk

zzself_discipline

The wealthiest man I know once told me the key to success is having amazing self-talk. I remember feeling disappointed when receiving this advice over a nice dinner. What a conundrum that I’m getting advice from the a man who was featured in Forbes Magazine as one of the most successful people alive and I’m having a negative response to advice about positive self-talk.

I decided to investigate further what he meant by “you have to have amazing self-talk”. He went on to explain that self-talk is defined as what you say about yourself to yourself, and what you allow others to say about you that you believe. Then it hit me, my whole life I thought being positive is what having positive self-talk was all about. But after my conversation with Spencer, I realized that my self-talk had nothing to do with being a positive person. It had everything to do with looking in the mirror and honestly saying what I think about myself.

Most people have the wrong idea around what self-talk is all about. Most people, myself included before this dinner, consider being a positive person as what it means to have positive self-talk. I think of a funny Saturday Night Live skit like this one when I hear motivational speakers talk about having a positive attitude and living in a van down by the river.

Your self-talk is the most important thing in your life. The core of your self-talk is your belief system. Your beliefs construct your attitudes. Your attitudes determine your actions. Your actions come from your feelings. Your feelings come from your self-talk. If someone stuck a recorder inside your brain over the past 24 hours, I’m willing to bet the things you tell yourself about yourself would be scary. Most people spend their entire lives telling themselves what they can and cannot do. And as Henry Ford said “whether you think you can or you cannot, you are right.”

Your self-image is directly tied to your self-talk. When you look in the mirror, do you see someone who is fat, ugly, dumb, a failure, a bad husband, a lousy father, a victim, a martyr, a jerk, a nag, a mediocre worker…Or do you see someone who is fit, sexy, smart, a winner, the world’s best husband and father, someone who will go over, under, around or straight right though any obstacle in their way!?

In 1st grade, I flunked phonics, then in 2nd grade I flunked spelling, then I proceeded for the rest of my schooling to make F’s in any subject that had to do with reading and writing.  I developed a very real self-talk issue around the topic of reading and writing. I would say things like “can someone else read instead of me, I’m good at other things and not good at reading.”  One day a sales manager at the Southwestern Company challenged me when he said, “You know as long as you keep saying you aren’t good at reading, you never will be.”  I went home that night and made a decision that I would never again say anything about being less proficient at reading and writing.  Instead, I would say things positive about reading and writing.

I created “Positive Affirmations” around reading and writing, and I started saying them everyday.  My affirmations included “I am a wordsmith”, “I am an author”, “I am an avid reader”, “My lexicon is vast”, and “I am the world’s best Scrabble player”.  After a few months of saying these “Positive Affirmations”, I found myself picking up a book and started reading every day. Additionally, I opened up a Word document and started writing every week. More than 14 years later, I’ve read over 100 books and am the author of several books.

As humans, we are programmed to think a certain way, whether we like it or not. Either you choose to give up control of your own programming and let the media, society or your friends and family program you with what you believe about yourself and the world…or… you take control of your self-talk and start programming yourself with the things you want to believe about yourself and the world. If you want to take control of your self-talk, the most impactful exercise you can possibly do is to take out a piece of paper and write out a minimum of 10 positive affirmation and then make copies of your affirmations and carry them with you, post them on your walls, share them with other people and, most importantly, say them to yourself out loud every day.

Here are some of my personal affirmations: 

  • God gives me all strength, courage and confidence… and with God anything is possible.
  • I always communicate with confidence, unwavering Relentless Truth.
  • I always put God first, Kyah second, Haven third, friends fourth, work fifth, and myself sixth regarding how I make decisions.
  • I am an athlete. I am consistent with working out at least 3 times per week and walk with Kyah 2 times per week, and eating a Paleo diet.
  • I raise the belief, energy and confidence level of every single person I interact with.
  • I empathize with others’ struggles, pains and regrets and help them embrace truth, forgiveness, mercy and love through God.
  • Most of all, my life mission and what God has called me to do is help others reach their God-given potential every day.

 

Do Your Words Really Matter?

I AM....Do you talk to yourself? I already know the answer to this, YES, you do!  We all do.

But have you ever thought about if the things you say to yourself really make a difference in how you think, act or react?

Do your words encourage you or discourage you?

Do they give you confidence or do they make you self-conscious?

Do they make you want to keep going or do they make you want to get back in bed?

What you say when you talk to yourself is one of the most untrained on parts of being a sales professional, but one of the most important. It’s what we at Southwestern Consulting call “the power of positive self-talk.”

Learning how to talk to yourself is a really powerful element of building confidence on the inside so it shows on the outside. If you don’t believe in yourself very few will believe in what you are selling.

Positive self-talk is talking about yourself in present tense, which starts to create the vision of who you want to become.  Watching your words must be an intentional act of discipline to constantly reassure yourself that you can do this, you can learn this and it’s all possible.

The benefit of positive affirmations can be life changing. It can change your personal life, your work life, your confidence, it can change everything about you.

So here’s what I want you to do: make a list of all the things you want in your life.

What are the things that you want to have?

What are the things that you want to be and how do you want the world to see you ?

Do you want the world to see you as a loving father/mother? A loyal husband/wife? A hard worker? How do you want to be seen?

Writing positive affirmations allow you to physically see what you want written out giving you something real to look at and work towards

Long before I was any good at sales, my affirmations said things like, “I’m a million dollar producer, I’m a great speaker, I’m the top sales person in our company, I am a top leader.”

I may not of be all those things right now, but I want to be them. So I’m going to talk to myself like I am that person today.

My husband is a great example of this. He’s such an inspiration to me in this very specific area, because when he puts his dreams on paper, his affirmations, what he believes about himself, it always seems to come true. Not always today and not always tomorrow but eventually everything that he puts on paper, he finds a way to make it happen.

Years ago, my husband wrote down on his affirmations list “I am a New York Times best selling author.” He didn’t have a title, pages, or a topic of what he wanted to write. But he knew that’s what he wanted to be.

Five years ago, I wrote, “I’m a million dollar producer” down on my affirmations list. And I was very far away from being a million dollar producer. In fact, my best year at the time was probably just over $300,000 in personal revenue. In 2012 the same year that my husband became a New York Time Best-Selling Author, I sold over a million dollars in revenue for our company.

I believed it before it happened. I talked to myself as if it were already true, so when it came true it wasn’t that much of a shock. I’d been preparing myself all along to be the person I wanted to become. I spoke it out loud every single day.

So, here’s what you need to do right now. You need to write down 10 affirmations of who you want to be, present tense. I am a marathon runner, I am a million dollar producer, I am a loyal and devoted wife, I am in fantastic physical shape, I am the best friend anyone could have.

“I am . . . ” are the statements that you want to use. Present tense, to tell yourself that you are the person that, one day, you want to be.

How to be a Top Producer

The MINDSET to Top Producers:

1.  On both good and bad days we have to remember that the results we get are from the thoughts we keep holding on to.

  • To accomplish anything in life, we have to have a dream and want it so bad we cannot live without it.

2.  We have to see ourselves as entrepreneurs and not independent contractors or employees.

  • We have to have a love affair with the business of selling…we have to be passionate about it every day…don’t focus on the parts of the job we don’t like.

3.  We have to remember the major reason for financial failure is working on something you don’t like for a long period of time.

  • We have to remember in life and business; it is never easy or fair.

4.  There is not security in this business…there are only opportunities and with opportunities there is massive failure…get used to it, it is part of becoming successful and winning.

5.  We have to develop the ability to bounce back from setbacks and failures quickly.

  • We can never let our dream out of our minds, even for a moment.  When the dream comes out of your mind it gives the negative a chance to come in.
  • Spend time with the right people…who are the right people and are you spending time with them now?

6.  Don’t be impressed with your success and your intelligence, because there are smarter and brighter people than us in the world.

7.  We have to quickly get out of fantasy land and get into reality to build our business.

8.  We have to be mentally prepared for the cycles, because success is never one long upward trend.

  • Work 8 hours a day if you want to be good and you want to get paid…work a lot more if you want to be great and rich

9.  We can find all the answers if we are willing to keep looking.  Lets become solution driven, not problem driven.

10.  You have to become the eternal optimist

  • We have to work every day on speed and urgency.
  • Make GREAT service your obsession.

11.  Develop the mindset that honesty is the best policy with everyone.

12.  Work to keep your mind clear.

  • Focus on making decisions quickly instead of worrying about being right or wrong…just get it done.
  • Decide in advance you are never going to have a bad day. 
  • Do what you are supposed to do, when you are supposed to do it…whether you like it or not.

13.  Remember emotions and drama don’t strengthen the mindset.

 

Go make it a great day,

Gary Michels

http://www.turnitupanotch.com

 

How to Get What You Want in Life – Day 5

There are 3 reactions to adversity:

(1) Those who become paralyzed by it

(2) those who struggle through it

(3) those who adapt to it and become stronger as a result.

The difference between the 3 has everything to do with one’s vision or lack of it. Person #1 has no vision. When he hits the wall, this is all he sees. Compare that to person #3 who when he smacks into the wall, he’s barely acknowledging it because his vision is so crystalized, he’s already looking for ways under, over, around or right through the obstacle in order to achieve his vision.

Your endurance is tied directly to the clarity of your vision!

With this in mind, I encourage you to create a vision binder which includes your  BE/DO/HAVE. So many people jump to the HAVE part of the equation without realizing that their “have’s” are a direct result of  the qualities, habits, and intellect they possess which allowed them to get there. The equation for success is a BE/DO/HAVE concept. What that means is that you must first decide what type of person you want to BE. What attributes, as a person, you see as being necessary to your success. This includes both personal and professional characteristics; such as a being a Christ centered, supportive husband & father. A man of honesty, integrity, hard work, discipline, focus, action, . . .etc. If you can imagine being at your own funeral, what would you like people to be saying about you?

Once you decide what characteristics you see as being crucial to your overall success, you need to decide what you see as necessary for you to DO to achieve this success. Habits, activities, goals and so on.

And only then do you have the ability to acquire what you want to HAVE. Monetary and material goals are only valuable as they pertain to the perceived impact they will have on your sense of fulfillment. The reality is that the journey is what gives people the happiness they want. The material stuff is just the icing on the cake. When you learn to enjoy the ride, the destination will be that much better. I enjoy the saying, “I don’t achieve to be happy. I happily achieve.”

BE/ DO/ HAVE: Remember, when you achieve your financial goal this year, what will be so impactful will not be the money you earn but rather the habits you form along the way, which will form your character, which will shape your destiny, which will enable you to have the lifestyle you desire for the rest of your life. This is what will truly be most meaningful.

Your vision binder can include anything that gets you fired up to work towards. It should include words and pictures. The mistake people make is when they start the process by looking through magazines to find interesting pictures that catch their eye and conclude, “This should be in my vision binder.” IE they let the magazine define their vision. The more effective way to approach your vision binder is to begin with the process of identifying the kind of life you desire to lead and then finding pictures to reinforce the vision. Remember, your vision is that picture of what things will look like when you’ve achieved your goals. What makes it powerful is when you create a picture of the life you desire to lead, you’ll begin to live into that picture as if it was already true. The power of a vision binder is such that, by reviewing it often, it will help you perform activities that you might not like to do, in order to achieve your long-term vision. Planning your days, for example, can be time consuming and tedious. However, if becoming an organized person is part of your vision, you’ll be that much more excited to plan your days because you’ll connect how this activity will lead you towards that vision. As we’ve talked about, most people only think in the short-term and only perform those activities they enjoy.

Peak performers, however, think in the long-term, and are willing to do activities they don’t always enjoy, in order to achieve their long-term vision. Having a vision binder will remind you of this. Once you lock onto an exciting vision for your life, you will do whatever it takes to achieve it, mowing down any obstacles that get in your way!

Steve Reiner

Professional Sales Coach

How to Create a Plan to Follow and Achieve Success – Day 2

You cannot possibly manage your time well, if you don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish for the day, week, month, etc. You need to have written goals. A vision of where you are going, what you want, and when you want it. Here is one way to get that done (written by Kitty Barrow, Southwestern Consulting™ partner and Professional Sales Coach)

I don’t know if you have the movie, “Facing the Giants”. If you don’t, it is definitely the kind of video you will want to buy and watch over and over again. One of the things I love about the main character, is that he sets down a mission statement and a vision statement with his team that, at first, is just his vision. By the end of the movie, you see how it has been internalized by his team. Here is just one clip from the beginning of the movie. The coach had hit rock bottom and had nowhere else to go, but ‘up’. I know this isn’t the situation you are in, but I love how he decided the mission, vision and purpose of his team. I hope you’ll watch the movie to see it all. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9G9C7o0dD4&feature=related <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/I9G9C7o0dD4&#8243; frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>

Action Steps:

1.      Work on dream & life pages and then have a posterboard making session.

2.      Work on Mission Statement, Vision, Long-Term Goals.

3.      Write a Creed for you personally, with your team at work and/or with your family.

4.      Write down your priorities and post them where you can see them every day.

We would love to see pics of your dream/vision boards. Please post them here.

We will choose 1 person who posted a picture of their dream/vision board to receive a FREE COPY of Gary Michels e-book, Turn It Up a Notch Weekly – 52 Weeks of Motivating Stories. Winner will be chosen on October 31st.

Achieve Your Dreams

Achieve Your Dreams

It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities. ~ Joanne Kathleen Rowling

As I talk to people around the world, I have heard many say more than once that “my perfect dream would be….” or something to that effect. So, I thought I would talk a bit about this today.

The key to achieving your dreams is simply making a choice to do just that – go for it. The most common difference between those who have an AWESOME life and those who don’t is simply the choices they make every day. It is not their circumstances, the way they were raised, or even their education as most people think. Most people who don’t accomplish their dreams simply choose not to. They just are not willing to do what is necessary to have a life that good.

Think about your life for a minute . . .

What do you want and what will it take to get it? What do you really want in all the areas of your life? So why haven’t you been doing what it will take to get there? I imagine, of course, you are doing some of the things, but why not all of them or most of them?

Before you start with the excuses, ask yourself if you really had to, could you? Let me make it a little clearer how this is a choice. I don’t like to think these thoughts, but it will help you understand that you can do it if you want it bad enough.

If the person or persons you care most about in life depended on you living your dream, could you absolutely 100% do it?

We both know the answer… of course you could and you would.

Once again, life is a series of choices.  I like to call them the Y’s in the road.

In most cases, if you take the easy path, the one most people take, you will experience short-term gain (it’s easier to live a life that is ¼ of ½ or what you actually want) and long-term pain (the regret of never going for what you want).

Let’s look at it this way:

Choosing the ½ life nets you short-term gain, long-term pain.

Choosing to really go for what you want nets you short-term pain (e.g. major adjustments need to be made to move in this direction, which could result in changing jobs, moving house, ending relationships, any number of what may be considered big stressors) and the long-term gain (once you’re firmly set on the path, the personal and professional joy and satisfaction will far outweigh the initial upset).

I WANT YOU TO REALLY THINK ABOUT THIS LAST THOUGHT. How can some of your choices change for long-term gain by taking the short-term pain?

Start “Turning It Up A Notch” by making the choice every day to FEEL GOOD…Because when you FEEL GOOD, you are ATTRACTIVE… when you are ATTRACTIVE, you have AMAZING PRODUCTIVITY… when you have AMAZING PRODUCTIVITY, you have EXTRAORDINARY RESULTS… and when you have EXTRAORDINARY RESULTS, you feel even better!  This is what I call the CIRCLE OF SUCCESS! And when does success start? Success Starts Now!™. That’s right, baby!

So make the choice to live a life of pure magic. Pay the price of short-term pain, receive the long-term gain and kick up your heels and dance – life is for LIVING!

What one thing can you do today to move yourself toward your dream? Doesn’t matter how small, even just leafing through a magazine about people doing the things you want to do is not insignificant…it starts your mind believing what you want it attainable.

Make it an incredibly successful week.

 

Gary Michels

Co-Founder Southwestern Consulting™
408-888-4848
www.southwesternconsulting.com

www.turnitupanotch.com