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Sales Expert Michael Bosworth on Top Things Great Salespeople Do: The ROI Online Podcast Ep. 73

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What are the secrets to successful selling?

In this episode of the ROI Online Podcast, sales expert and author Michael Bosworth talks about how emotional connection, the power of story, and building trust between people can impact your bottom line and make your business more successful.

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Michael is a sales expert, entrepreneur, and the author of 3 books that can help you become a better leader. He’s the founder of Story Seekers, a human-to-human communications framework that is built on the philosophy of understanding and connecting before influencing or moving others into action.

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It’s hard to achieve great results for your organization’s sales, marketing, and customer experience. But if you build a framework that helps you connect and build trust with your team and customers, your business can thrive because of it.

Among other things, Michael and Steve discussed:

  • Michael’s back story and why he became a salesperson 
  • The power of having a good story behind your product/service
  • Why emotional connection and trust are so important 
  • The best sales tips from his book: What Great Salespeople Do
  • Scale your business by having Buying Facilitators instead of Salespeople
  • The importance of creating curiosity for your customers 
  • How making your customer the hero can help your organization succeed and stand out



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You can learn more about Michael here:
Follow Michael on LinkedIn 

You can learn more about Story Seekers here:
https://www.customerheroselling.com/

Read the books mentioned in this podcast:

The Golden Toilet by Steve Brown
What Great Salespeople Do by Michael Bosworth
Customer Centric Selling  by Michael Bosworth
Solution Selling  by Michael Bosworth


Enroll in the QuickStart Academy today to learn how to develop and implement a proven growth strategy that grows your ROI, your business, and your confidence. Learn more HERE.

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Topics: Marketing, Podcasts

Michael Bosworth: 

If you think about how people buy, in most cases, at the beginning of the buy cycle, they aren't even looking. So we have to get them from not looking to looking. We have to trigger pure curiosity, we have to trigger pure envy. That's phase one. Now phase two, now you're going to do a demo. Now they have a mind vision, can you really replant? Replan this complex factory overnight. Now the techies go in and demo their hearts out. And typically in the middle of the sell cycle, when the when the potential client is looking at details. Now you go to lunch. And they say, So Steve, how'd you get into this business? They express some curiosity. So we have that second story, all locked and loaded, ready to go with a story arch with a setting, a struggle, a turning point, and a resolution.

Steve Brown: 

Hi, everybody. Welcome to the ROI Online Podcast where we believe you, the courageous entrepreneurs of our day, are the invisible heroes of our economy. You not only improve our world with your ideas, your grit and your passion, but you make our world better. I'm Steve Brown and this is a place where we have great conversations with winners just like you while we laugh and learn together. Michael Bosworth Welcome to the ROI Online Podcast.

Michael Bosworth: 

I'm happy to be here with you, Steve.

Steve Brown: 

So Michael, you're an author, you've got several books, What Great Salespeople Do, Customer Centric Selling, Solution Selling. And I have to confess I probably read one of those actually, either Solution Selling or Customer Centric. They're older, but I think I might have perused those and read those way back in the day. But I'm excited to have you today.

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, Solution Selling was my first book, I wrote it in 93, after starting my Solution Selling Sales Training business in 1983. And then I developed a, an affiliate network, because a lot of people wanted to be in the solution selling business. And they kept begging me for a book. And so I finally wrote it after 10 years in business. And the interesting thing is, before that book, the largest client I ever had was about 300 million a year. And after that book came out, we got Microsoft and IBM as cons. And when you're so a sales trainer working for himself out of your bedroom in your house, that's pretty good.

Steve Brown: 

That's not bad. So what in the world convinced you at some point in your history that you were good at sales, that you liked sales?

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, that's an interesting question, because I was really fortunate to get an entry level job out of college, I was 25. I've been to Vietnam. And I used all my GI Bill. And Xerox Corporation, as most people know, has invented more technology than they never bet they've never made money at than any other company in the history of the world. They invented the whole desktop, the mouse, the icons, and everything. And then they gave Steve Jobs a tour of the Palo Alto Research Center, and that the rest of that is history. Xerox also invented Ethernet. They never made any money at that. But what most people don't know Xerox invented cloud computing in 1969. And when I joined Xerox Computer Services in 1972, I was right out of college, and they have a job that was so shitty that none of their permanent people wanted it. And it was the help desk. So I started off in the help desk, and we had 50 local LA clients, city governments, distribution distributors, and manufacturers all hooked up to our computer in with phone lines and dumb terminals. And it was usage based revenue, fully interactive, General Ledger payables, receivables, order entry, inventory, production, control, material control, etc, etc, all these applications and so I did a three ring binder for all of them on my desk, and people will call me and I'd have to get them out of their messes all day long. After a year that I went out, and got to meet all my customers that I've been working with and, I'll be over Little vulnerable here. A lot of them said, Oh, when they finally met me, they said, We thought you were taller. But anyway, so then I got to do hands on with live customers, helping them run their business using our applications. And they didn't use it, there was no revenue. And so after two and a half years, management comes to me and they said, Mike, we want you to go into sales. And I had to answer's no and Hell no. The no, I was, I didn't really respect those guys. They were mostly ex IBM errs because our CEO came from IBM. And every client I had, they had made promises to that we couldn't keep. They'd say, Oh, yeah, it'll do that. Oh, yeah, it'll do that. And then they'd sign up, and it wouldn't. And so I'd have to, you know, fix that. The second problem was my violent alcoholic father was a salesman, and the last thing I ever wanted to do was be anything like him. So I said no, and Hell no. And they came back about a week later and said, okay, we understand your reluctance, we're going to give you a little safety. In writing, if you don't like sales, you can have your application consultant job back after six months. And you can keep your application consultant salary, you don't have to drop down to the sales base. So I said, Okay, and then I had a boss that taught me the one thing I really didn't know how to do, I knew how to help people solve problems with their product, but I didn't know how to find prospects. And so I said, I'm going to teach you to cold call. And back then, this is probably before you were born, Steve. But cold calling was actually going into an industrial park, walking into a building going up to the receptionist, introducing yourself and asking to see a job title.

Steve Brown: 

I did that for years.

Michael Bosworth: 

So I started doing that. And I did this all intuitively, which is why it took me 35 years to be able to really teach it well. Because most really good salespeople do it intuitively. And that's why they they struggle a sales managers, because how do you teach somebody else to do what you do intuitively? And the answer is with great difficulty. But all those other salespeople that we had hired back then were in their mid 30s to early 40s, 98% of them from IBM. Everybody who joined our company back then had to go through product school and what it really was this demo school, and you couldn't graduate, until you could demo, every application demo in General Ledger's really exciting as you can imagine. And anyway, you had to be able to demo only applications. And so virtually all those other high powered IBM salespeople they after six weeks of product school, they go out to make their first sales call. And what's the only thing we taught them to do? Demo. So they say can I show you a demo? They've led with product. Now me, I've been helping customers for two years. And we had a first generation MRP system that was blowing the socks off the industry so I

Steve Brown: 

What's an MRP system?

Michael Bosworth: 

Material requirements planning. And basically, we could take a manufacturing plant that had 50,000 parts, some of them with 52 week lead times, multiple bill, hugely complex, and where they used to take a week and a half to 10 days each quarter on flipchart paper all over the walls to plan their production. We could replan their plant overnight. So I'd go knock on the door. I'm 28 years old, go up to the, now our marketing department, they gave us the targets. They said here are the manufacturing plants with the right SIC code, the right number of employees and center that are a perfect target for where we should be selling, right. So I go knock on one of those doors and say, Hi, my name is Mike Bosworth and I'm with Xerox Computer Services and I'd like to speak with your materials manager. They call the materials manager and say I got this guy from Xerox in the lobby. You know, what do you want me to do? Well, 80% of the time this is 1974, they come out. The only thing I can think of is that they were curious and back then, if you're 50 years old and you've been on a college for 30 years or 28 years. The only way you could learn anything new about new technology for manufacturing is to see salespeople they didn't have the internet. So we had a power back then that's today salespeople don't have which is knowledge of the technology and the product. And then Xerox had a halo and basically anybody from IBM, Honeywell UNIVAC, any of them could have done the same thing and had 80% of them come out, just because they were curious, right? But then they come out. He's, I'm 28, he's 48 and as soon as he looks at me in there, all men, there were no female materials managers back then they've looked at their watch. And I knew what they were thinking, they were thinking, Oh, god, this guy is, you know, barely out of the nest. He knows nothing. And now I have to be polite to him for the next, you know, 15 minutes before I give them the boo, right? Okay, now, this is all intuitive, but it works so well. I said, so you're the materials manager? And they say yes. And I say, Can I share a story with you about another materials manager I've been working with, less than a mile from here for the last 18 months? And they say, Sure, I never had a single person turned down a pure story. Because that pure curiosity is so strong. So he'd say yes. And then I had a 60 second story, the thing I just did, you know, here's where I met him. Here's the situation 18 months ago, and then I get into his struggle before he had our product. His CFO was pissed at him because he had too much inventory. His VP of manufacturing was mad at him because he's missing the shipment schedule. And then I'd go to the turning point of the story 18 months ago, when he found out that Xerox now had a capability to replan an assembly manufacturing plant overnight. He decided to be an innovator early adopter, and he volunteered to be our first customer. He took the risk. We had no existing customers. He went first. Here we are 18 months later, he used to have 8 million in inventory now he's down to 1.9 in inventory, million, his past used to be 28% now it's 2%. But enough about me, what's going on here? Because I had installed that one. So I knew that story cold, right? And 60 seconds after he looked at his watch. Now he'd say you want to come in and look around? So that's story, that 60 second story led him to some emotional conclusions. First emotional conclusion is even though this guy's a lot younger than me, it sounds like he knows how hard my job is. It sounds like he's helped somebody else like me solve the biggest problem I've got on my plate. And basically, the story removed his discovery, resistance. And most human beings have built in discovery resistance against salespeople, or the whole idea of feeling sold or being sold to. To make a long story short, in my first five months in quota, I sold more than anybody in the history of the company sold in the four year, I filled my pipeline with that one story.

Steve Brown: 

The beautiful thing about that, I love is that you're able to help them envision themselves in a particular aformational situation, yet one where they feel like this guy understands me, I'm safe investigating right here. But also, I can become a hero, I can get out of danger, I can get out of the stress that I'm in.

Michael Bosworth: 

I can get out of danger. That's a great way of saying that Steve, because he was in danger. He went to work every day, with to sea level people crawling up all over him. And he's working 55 hours a week and he was afraid of being fired every day he went to work.

Steve Brown: 

And what I love is his brain was filling in all the details, where everyone is being trained to do a demo, while they're assuming this demo is solving the assumed problems that exist and people are going, you lost me because that's not what I'm dealing with. And for you to go in and tell a story their brain takes over and fills in all the details that they believe.

Michael Bosworth: 

Well if you've read What Great Salespeople Do. I started doing my research into the power of story in 2008. And I think it's UCSD in San Diego, they had somebody in an MRI machine. And they were watching their brain when the idea of, Can I share a story with you? In other words, we are all trained from infancy to anticipate stories with once upon a time. And they found that the human being when they anticipate a story, that critical left brain shuts down the creative, right brain, hook to all our senses and emotions and everything's opens up, yeah, so that's why I call it permission selling because stories are really powerful. But no stranger is gonna let another stranger walk up to them and tell them a 60 second story. Especially if they're a salesperson, the whole key is to first trigger their pure curiosity. Oh, you're a materials manager, can I share a story with you about another materials manager? And if the story is really powerful, which mine was, in 60 seconds, they went from pure curiosity to pure envy. And once he had pure envy, he said, you want to come in and look around? All the discovery resistance has gone and I spent the next 45 minutes doing discovery.

Steve Brown: 

So in your book, What Great Salespeople Do, what are the top three things that great salespeople people do? Now, I would assume lead with a story is one of them?

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, it's actually they have three stories in their quiver. They have a customer hero story. They have their personal story of why they do what they do and then that personal story, the struggle, there has to be their own personal struggle and career. So the person buying from from them comes to the emotional conclusion that they have character, that they keep their promises, if they fall down, they can get up, you know. The third story is the who I represent story, which is the story of their company, their founder, their company mission, etc. And if you think about how people buy, in most cases, the beginning of the buy cycle, they aren't even looking, so we have to get them from not looking to looking, we have to trigger pure curiosity, we have to trigger trigger pure envy. That's phase one. Now phase two, now you're going to do a demo. Now they have a mind vision, can you really replant? Replan this complex factory overnight. Now the techies go in and demo their hearts out. And typically in the middle of the sales cycle, when the when the potential client was looking at details. Now you go to lunch. And they say, So Steve, how'd you get into this business? They express some curiosity. So we have that second story, all locked and loaded, ready to go with a story arc with a setting a struggle, a turning point and a resolution. And then in phase three, now they say yeah, it'll work. Now we have a transition plan. Now we know how we're doing education, etc, is an hour and pitching to C levels, they get the CFO to sign off on this big deal. And the C level people in phase three, say so. We've never heard about your company before. Who are you? Now you tell that company story that shows that your company has character, your company keeps their promises, your company takes care of their customers, etc. And it's basically those three stories locked and loaded in great salespeople, and they do it intuitively. But only 20% of salespeople are great. The other 80% need a model to follow.

Steve Brown: 

Awesome. We're talking with Michael Bosworth, his website is customerheroselling.com He's the author of three excellent books on sales. What Great Salespeople Do, Customer Centric Selling, Solution Selling and we're learning right now about the power of story. And I always say, Michael, that our brains crave information that's packaged in the format of story, it's how we pass on information. Our brains, they've never changed, they're still 1.0 and even though our world has changed, our brains haven't changed and that's why story is so powerful. I love that you started to package this a long time ago, in a way for people to take advantage of how we grow up and expect information to come to us, and that's in the form of stories.

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, you know, most of our clients, when we first call on them, they say, Oh, well, we've got lots of success stories they're on our website, check them out. But whenever we investigate, turns out the salespeople are not using the stories in their own website. And that's because they weren't built for, those stories weren't built for conversations. And so one of the things we do in our workshops, is we have each salesperson take a story as a case study, or whatever they call them on their website, and convert it into a conversational 60 second story, that they can tell conversationally, just with bullet points for each of the segments of the story. Because as soon as, have you ever noticed when when a newscaster is reading from a teleprompter, that there's no real connection? Because they're in their left brain. And if a salesperson is trying to memorize a fully written out story with punctuation, and they're in their left brain, they think, Oh, did I miss it? You know, and if we get them into their right brain, with just a few bullet points for each key piece of the story, now they're making eye contact, and they're having a conversation, and the difference in connection is huge in the way they deliver it.

Steve Brown: 

Hey, I wanted to pause right here and tell you about a book that you need to get today. It's the funniest book on marketing. It's called The Golden toilet, stop flushing your marketing budget into your website and build a system that grows your business. And guess who wrote it? That's right, I wrote it. And I wrote it just for you because I want to help you get past the last hurdles of setting up your business and getting it squared away. I wrote it so that you can avoid time wasting time, wasting money, wasting frustration, get the book on Audible, you can get it on Kindle, you can get it on Amazon, but get the book, take advantage of the insights in there and let me know what you think. And now back to this excellent episode. I love how on your website, you're talking about architecting your web visitor experience. And I think it's something that a lot of the folks that we work with, it's like something that's this beautiful thing that they can invest in an evergreen asset that's going to support their sales process. They have an expectation that this investment, this digital investment should pay off, it shouldn't grow the value of your business. But what you're connecting as far as the dots here is, why not take this and help your prospects, the folks you want to serve, begin to be introduced to the stories that your salespeople are going to take and really become a force multiplier for what they're doing.

Michael Bosworth: 

Sure. Well, my philosophy for my whole sales training career is most people love to buy but they hate feeling sold. And so if you go out as a salesperson, the kiss of death early in a new relationship is to remind your buyer of another asshole salesperson that stole his wallet a year ago, you're toast if you know, we've worked with other people just like you, that just like you, you're done. Steve, what you need is our blankety blank system. As soon as they hear that, you need, you're done. So a lot of what we have to do is teach people to facilitate the buying and as long as, because he will love to buy, and so if you're in tune and use story to nudge them through their buy cycle, they never feel pressured.

Steve Brown: 

So what do you say to people that go, Michael, you're manipulating people here. What is your answer for this?

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, then they're volunteering to be manipulated. In other words, we are leaving the buyer in control. If you look at basic human needs like air, water, food and shelter, the next one for people is to feel in control. And then number one, when they do surveys of why people hate salespeople, the number one reason is pressure. I don't like feeling pressure. So we are letting the buyer. I've been channeling salespeople forever to change the title on their business card from accounting executive or whatever to buying facilitator. It has, well one, person is what do you mean buying facilitator? We can say, Well, I know you don't want to feel sold. And I don't want to anti for regular salesperson I want to help you buy in if you don't want to buy, I'm gone. So I'm a buying facilitator.

Steve Brown: 

You know, what I like to do is I think it's important that they feel like, Look, I'm wanting to support you in your process. Here, you're investigating a solution, you're trying to come up with something to help you over a hump. But I just want to make sure we have a good fit. And we may or may not be what you need. But at least you're gonna leave here with more understanding than you arrived with.

Michael Bosworth: 

Absolutely. Yeah. Well said, Yeah.

Steve Brown: 

You know, when you, in your talks about ask your visitor to identify with a proven vertical market for your offering. And this isn't we're talking about helping them segment themselves on your website. Talk to us more about this.

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, sometimes we don't have job title peer envy. But we've worked with sports teams, or we've worked with hospitals, or we've worked with banks or insurance companies. Ideally, we can connect on two levels, industry and job title, before we bring on our stories, we have a higher chance of developing pure curiosity, if I've not only worked with other CFOs, but I've worked with other CFOs of hospitals. So it's just, it's an additional connecting point.

Steve Brown: 

Right, you know, my good friend Will Leach he's author of a book called Marketing To Mindstates. And in his book he talks about what your facilitating here, is that the folks that show up in these buyer roles are in a state of mind, they're approaching this decision process in a common state of mind, not necessarily, you know, I'm 55 years of age, and I have two kids and not that demographic, but I'm approaching this problem in a state of mind, and to be able to connect with them and actually put your content on your website to communicate that decision process from that state of mind makes them feel safe. And it makes them feel understood.

Michael Bosworth: 

Yeah. And then we find it it's about 50/50. Some people are more curious if you're a CFO, 50/50, that you're going to be curious about what other problems other CFOs have solved? Or would you like to hear what other CFOs are saying about how they like our product? So we go either way you can have, so if they're curious about you know, a customer usage statement. And I say, Would you like to hear the story of the customer who said that? If they're curious about a problem solved, I'd say, Would you like to hear the story of the person who solved that problem? Neither case, the first step and from not looking to looking is curiosity.

Steve Brown: 

Yeah. And so that's, you know, the ex. Oh, he's not with HubSpot anymore. But he, I really loved what he said that people that really changed the way that they shop, live and buy right now. And as because I'm going to evaluate from a a distance of safety. So I mean, I can sneak around on your website, and you don't know who I am. But I can go investigate and look without that pesky person asking me Hey, may I help you? And he's like, No, I'm good. But after they've identified in that start to see themselves in that story about that solution. That's when they feel better about raising their hand and identifying who they are.

Michael Bosworth: 

And then you know, in the deck I sent you if you're selling a product b2c, and it's easy to understand, once they have a buying vision, then you give them some purchasing options, right there on the website, no human being involved. And if it's complex, if it's going to be a committee, if it's going to be big dollars, etc. You know, would you like to talk to one of our representatives and get in the calendar and book an appointment for yourself?

Steve Brown: 

That's what I love about your workshop and your training is that oftentimes when folks are wanting to refresh their website, they're at a loss that exactly what they should put on their website and how that journey should flow in that website. And so you have these super cool things like customer heroes stories, why we use it? Well, it makes an emotional connection. It establishes trust, competence, credibility, it reduces discovery resistance, and it creates a vision of success whereby. I really love how you have it broken down here.

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, you know, the mistake that most companies make, is they don't make their customer the hero, they make their company the hero or their product the hero. It solves this problem. It does this, it does that, right. My question is, well, how does it do it? Do we just plug it in and the solution magically appears?

Steve Brown: 

So when when you started realizing this story solution, this way of using stories, What kind of resistance did you get from people that you wanted to train to apply it? Because I've attempted this a little bit. And you know, these oilfield guys are going like, No, you don't know who we're talking to, they don't care, all they care about is price. They don't care about story. What do you say to that, Michael?

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, basics are, people buy from people, and you're only competing on price when they don't have a personal relationship with somebody. And yeah, if you're competing on price, that's a shitty like, I'd go find a new company to represent, you know?

Steve Brown: 

That's the burried headline right there. If you're competing on price, then that's because there's not a personal relationship there. One time I heard this great quote, and I don't know who to credit it to. But it's like people buy you first before they buy what you do or what you're selling.

Michael Bosworth: 

Absolutely. That's why my little 60 second customer hero story when I was 28 years old, filled my pipeline, that one story.

Steve Brown: 

This is, so a qualified lead is defined as a defined targeted buyer, curious how we helped their peer or competitor, make money, save money, achieve goals or solve a problem. That's your definition of what a qualified lead is. So if someone that's curious about how you help their peer, that's where the pure envy comes in. And it helps them envision how they can make money, save money, achieve goals or solve a problem.

Michael Bosworth: 

And you know, in most companies, sales and marketing are like this, right there. Yeah, marketing is saying we send these great leads to sales, and they fall into a black hole. And the salespeople say, we get these garbage leads from marketing, you know, that I couldn't wipe my butt with they're so bad. And the touchpoint between sales and marketing is that definition of a lead. So whatever it is, the key to integrating sales and marketing is get that VP of sales and the VP of marketing to mutually agree on the definition of a qualified lead. Bingo, it's a miracle!

Steve Brown: 

I've never heard that discussed. It's always assumed. But it's a beautiful thing to really highlight. We're talking with Michael Bosworth, he's the author of three books. What Great Salespeople Do, Customer Centric Selling, Solution Selling his website is customerheroselling.com is where you can start to build your customer hero marketing. Michael so what's one question that you'd love to answer that nobody ever asks you?

Michael Bosworth: 

Boy, Steve, that's a tough one because I've been hearing questions for 40 years. I guess the one that people ought to be asking me, the salespeople, the biggest problem for most salespeople is when they get into a slump. Even professional athletes get into slumps, right? We hate slumps, where we were really cooking. We were things were working well and then all of a sudden, we're in a slump. So the question is, why do I was the top salesman in the company last year, and now I'm in a slump this year?

Steve Brown: 

Yeah, that hurts.

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, I know why.

Steve Brown: 

Why is it?

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, do you know what the Goldilocks Zone is? Well, like in our solar system, the only planet that's the right perfect distance from our Sun. It's got water and oxygen is in the Goldilocks Zone for life. The others, it's too hot or too cold, right? Well, salespeople hit a Goldilocks Zone. And if you think about a new salesperson, even though they're experienced, let's say they they join a new enterprise technology company, like a salesperson that used to sell software, and then they joined Salesforce, okay, well, anytime a salesperson joins a new organization, no matter how good they were in their last job, they go through what I call time to solution expertise, there's a certain elapsed time depending on how complex their new offering is, for them to really not knowing how to describe it all to the point where they have solution expertise. So solution expertise is what gets them into a slump. So back in 1979, Xerox Corporation, the copier junk giant, not my little division. They were having salespeople go fall into slumps. And they hired a behavioral researcher named Neil Rackham to go out and say, you know, why is this happening? And why when star salespeople go into management, they crash and burn? And why do 20% of our sales people bring in 80% of their revenue year after year after year? So Neil Rackham goes out and he's only studying the top 20%, the Eagles, he's not even looking at the journeyman. And he found that back then Xerox, hired six new batches of elite college graduates from all the Ivy League schools, six batches a year. And they started tracking their performance, they put them through six weeks of product training, kick them out of the nest and say go sell for Xerox, and they get better and better and better and better each month. But in 18 months, you could set your watch, but they'd all go into a slump. So what happened was, as long as they did not have full solution expertise, and a buyer would start talking about a problem they had no choice but to say, well help me understand your problem. Why do you think it happens? What have you tried to do to solve it before? etc. But once they get solution expertise at 18 months, the buyer gets four words out of their mouth and the seller goes, Ah, we see this all the time. This is out of whack, right? This is out of whack. And this is out of whack. Here's what you need. The irony is the salesperson is absolutely correct. He or she knows exactly what the solution is but they're dumping, it took them 18 months to figure it out now they want their buyer to figure it out in four seconds. And the buyers go Whoa, because that pressure. So they were in the Goldilocks Zone of selling for maybe a month or two where they were really killing it. But then they got so much solution expertise, that they started what I call premature elaborating, prematurely elaborating, they only hear a word or two and they go, here's what you need. Human beings do not like being told what they need to do. And you know how I convince all my workshop audiences of that. I'd say next break. Take your phone. Call your partner, your romantic partner, your spouse, your girlfriend, your boyfriend, the person who in theory loves you more than anybody else. Try two to three you need to statements on them and see how it works them up, right. And they all you know, right? Most of them don't even, are smart enough to not even try it. But if you do try it and then go Oh, yeah. So if the person who loves you the most won't take it from you. Why would you take it from a salesperson? And so it's the telling people what they need. That solution expertise is what puts them into a slump. And so we have to teach them. Okay, now you get the buyer to admit pain, which is a huge skill, because people, you know, they don't admit their problem to you, they're never gonna buy from you, right? But instead of once they admit their problem, which is a huge, we call it a public display of trust, right? I'm trusting you enough to be vulnerable. And Steve, say, I really suck at this area, my job, right? Instead of going, Oh, we see that all the time. Here's what you need to come back and say, Can I share a story with you about somebody else who had the exact same problem?

Steve Brown: 

And then all of a sudden they go, God.

Michael Bosworth: 

Then you slow them down and then you take them through the learning curve of your customer?

Steve Brown: 

And then they go

Michael Bosworth: 

And that cures the slump.

Steve Brown: 

What an awesome tip. You know, I liked, you and I talked before we started on this, but this is what I love about this podcast is I get to talk to someone and geek out about stuff that most of the people around me would be bored with. But the folks that are listening to this, this is an opportunity to get to talk with the author, Michael, and really hear pithy items like this that really make a difference. The Goldilocks Zone, I love that and never heard that before. I appreciate that. Michael, you've been an awesome guest on the ROI Online Podcast. Tell us about your workshop? What's going on, where people need to contact with you?

Michael Bosworth: 

Well, I'm pretty much retired now. I'm 74 years old, and I've got muscular dystrophy and so I'm not traveling, I can't you know, I can't go up steps very well. So I've got a couple of us affiliates, and one in the Far East in Singapore and one in Europe, who are right now we're doing story seekers workshops online, because COVID. And so you go to storyseekersus.us, you can see our, the workshops we're doing, and we do some open workshops where you can sign up one z to z, mostly what we do is we're doing it for an enterprise and, you know, we have zoom rooms, so we have the big tent, and then we break them up into small groups and allow them to roleplay because, Have you noticed that there's 4000 colleges and universities in the United States, and I think only 37 of them have more than two courses on selling? You know why?

Steve Brown: 

Cuz they don't know what they're teaching about.

Michael Bosworth: 

That's right. How many college professors do you think could sell quota in anything? Right, and selling is not an academic subject, it's a skill. It's like, when you're 16 years old, you can watch all the videos you wanted about how to drive a stick shift, but it if you don't get in that thing and do it, you're never going to learn it. And selling is the same way. So we have over three days, we have six different breakouts where coach, three or four people in a small group, and we practice telling customer heroes stories, and we practice tending buyer story. And we practice telling our company's story and we practice telling our personal stories. This is something you cannot learn from a book.

Steve Brown: 

I agree. And people are intimidated from doing roleplay in front of their peers. But it's so powerful, and it's really cool. If you can get past that ego thing. Yeah, there's a lot to learn. Michael, thanks for being on the ROI Online Podcast man. You're a great guest.

Michael Bosworth: 

Thank you, sir. It was a pleasure meeting you and let's stay connected.

Steve Brown: 

Let's do that.

Michael Bosworth: 

Good. Thank you. All right.

Steve Brown: 

And that's a wrap. Thanks for listening to another fun episode of the ROI Online Podcast. For more, be sure to check out the show notes of this episode and feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn where we can chat, and I can help direct you to the resources you're searching for. To learn more about how you can grow your business better be sure to pick up your copy of my book, The Golden Toilet at surprise, thegoldentoilet.com I'm Steve Brown, and we'll see you next week on another fun episode of the ROI Online Podcast.