And welcome to The “S” Word LIVE. My name is Renee Hribar, TEDx, speaker sales strategist and author. And my goal today is to help you make sales simple and fun. Today, I’m talking about four big issues that I see super smart women having when it comes to making sales today. So if we haven’t met yet, I have been selling for the last twenty years. I’ve been teaching thousands of super smart people how to make sales comfortable, especially when it’s a woman selling to other women. So many people come to me saying, oh, my gosh, Renee, I was taught to, you know, really hit them on the head and say, why don’t you buy it now? And, you know, say, why until you cry and all these horrible pieces of advice. And I just can’t tell you how amazing it is to hear from my clients, how relieved they feel once they finally figure it out from me, because honestly, truly does not have to be hard or scary or pushy. There are so many ways to sell without selling. And I talk about this a lot in my programs. You’ll hear my students talking about it as they talk about sales. You’ll hear my clients talk about it as they share their business with you, that it truly is about selling without selling. And it just warms my heart to hear so many people that I touch their lives and help them. So say hello as you join.
And I am going to talk about these four big things. But before I do, I want to share this story with you.
There was a super smart woman. She had been an educator, so she had been a professor at a university and not a full time professor, but that was one of her roles.
She was paid as a professional writer and she also had run lots and lots of workshops. She had done lots of work, done so well, but she had never been responsible for the selling side of her business. Have you guys relate to that where you spent years, decades, maybe even working in your profession, spending time mastering your skills for someone else? So they hired you because of your expertise? You worked on your professional development. Is that true for you? Say hello as you join. Where you spent years developing your professional skills, but you weren’t necessarily the one to be in charge of the selling. And then that day came and something happened. Maybe you just wanted to have more freedom. Maybe it was you had your fourth kid, maybe you got married and had your first. Or maybe you just decided you wanted to travel the world and live the laptop lifestyle. So whatever that might be. In this particular case, she just had that kind of moment like, OK, that’s it, I’m done.
I’m hanging up my own shingle. I’m going to consult. I’m going to teach other people to do what I have learned to do. So she comes to the Internet space, creates her business and she’s putting out offers, but nobody’s buying. And then I meet her and Ahhhh, and here are four of the main things that we discussed. Now, I want to say that the four things I’m about to share with you aren’t only happening in the past, but they’re happening constantly. I have an amazing group of women that I constantly work with students in my programs and services, women in my master mind, women that I work with one on one, big corporations and local seed based companies. The goal here is, is that you take this information and you go, I get it. OK, so first one. First of all, if you have professional experience and now you’re hanging up your own shingle and now is your time. So as you tell me that I’m going to go into the first one, the first thing is this.
Most people stink… suck, let’s say,
at asking questions. Think about it, not only us, but our clients or our prospective clients. So because number one, people suck at asking questions, they don’t know how to ask what they actually need to know.
So they might come at us asking, well, what about this? And it feels like, well, that’s a dumb question. Why would they ask me that? It’s because they’re not good at asking questions. And ultimately, many of the women that I begin to work with aren’t good at it either. But they’ve had inquiries. They’ve had in essence, you know, I hate that word, but like leads come in because when you say someone is a lead, you all of a sudden kind of depersonalize it. And selling is very personal, especially when you’re a woman selling to other women. It’s very personal. It’s not transactions unless you’re totally at arm’s length and it’s all digital. But most of the women I work with are working for one on one with women or they’re doing done for your services. So that being said, the number one thing is people suck at asking questions. So when they get a question and it seems off color, off base, they’re like, well, why are they asking me that? And then they blow them off. Allow them the space, help them ask the questions, shepherd them through the question asking process. So if you’ve ever experienced that where someone came at you and asked a crazy off the wall question, and you’re like where that question come from, and then you almost felt like, oh, jeez, I don’t want to talk to that person, they’re asking crazy questions, know this, they’ve probably just suck at asking questions. And so how do you combat that? Well, that’s something that obviously I deal with in all my client work.
But the true answer is to, you know, the overarching answer is to think about it, think about what is the best way that I can possibly guide this person. What are the questions I need to ask them to pull out the actual questions that they need to ask me so that we can decide together if working together in some capacity is the next best step. So let me know. Number one, have you ever had anybody ask you a question that you were like what and you couldn’t figure out why they’re asking you such a crazy question? Let me know in the comments here. I’ve got my handy dandy technology here today. The second thing that people always oh my gosh, this one I had this one written down is when I work with smart women, oftentimes they start making decisions for their clients or potential clients before they actually ask. So this really builds on the second one, but it happens so often. I had to put it in here. So what I mean by that is if someone I’m working with says, well, I don’t think she has the money or I don’t think that this is right for her or I don’t think this is necessarily the next best step for her. My question to them is always, OK, well, what is the next best step? What is the next step for them? How much is their budget? And they’re like, well, I don’t know.
Well, that means we need more discovery, so.
So as you’re joining me live, thank you for joining me. You can always ask your sales questions below as well. I am checking these comments throughout the rest of the day. So that being said, when someone comes to you and they are getting a preconceived notion from you, that’s not fair to them. So oftentimes, as women who are selling to other women, our professional services, whether it be copywriting services, social media management services, writing services, agency services, Facebook ads services, marketing services, all the different women that I work with in the different industries that I have, they oftentimes project what they believe is happening onto the person before they’ve actually asked them.
So what I always say is if someone is asking you for a proposal, but you’re struggling to answer what the proposal would be, it’s because we haven’t asked the right questions. We haven’t done enough discovery yet. Let me give an analogy. So if you went into the doctor and you were like, oh, my gosh, you know, my shoulders really hurt me. Oh, my gosh. And they were like, oh, it’s this. Here you go, try that.
Wouldn’t you feel like … uhh, don’t you want to, like, check it out, you know, do an X-ray, an MRI, take blood work? I mean, don’t you want to like do some deeper dive work before you just zippity doo dah give me an answer. Right. So that’s what I’m encouraging you to do, is play that role of the doctor and don’t just assume that the person that you’re talking to has a specific need.
Don’t assume that they have a specific budget. You have to ask. So that builds up the first one. And the second one is don’t make decisions for your customers or potential customers or clients or potential clients. Ask them questions. OK, here’s number three.
Oh, and this one comes up all the time. Too fast, too soon.
So when I start to work with a woman, usually she’s super excited. She must get good at sales, she’s ready. And so I teach her the basics or she takes one of my courses or programs and she’s like, all right. Yeah. And then she goes out there, but she goes too fast, too soon. So she skips all the pieces of the puzzle that were there in the first place. What makes women so great at sales? Because this is right. When I ran sales teams, when I had my own sales agency, the best salespeople that I’ve ever worked with were introverted women, because once they learn the skills and strategies, wow, they are so good at tuning in and asking questions and connecting one on one. It’s a very personal process selling. So those people were so good at that. So I’m not that I want to put anybody in a bucket, but truly the best. So they don’t go too fast, too soon.
So what I mean by that. Going too fast, too soon, being like, hi, how are you? Here you go. No. So once they learn the strategies and techniques and the sales scripts they’re like, they just want to blast it out to everyone.
The bottom line is this. Selling is a process. No one will care what you have, even if it’s the best, juiciest, exciting… bricks of gold, literally.
If they don’t know who you are or believe in who you are or believe that you have the actual authority to give them this answer.
So. They’ll be on the Internet where we talk about “know, like and trust”. Right. So there was an example that my sales manager gave us back in the day.
My goodness, back in the mid Nineties, we were working in midtown Manhattan. That was where the office was. Thirty-Nineth Street between Fifth and Sixth, and he was like, it doesn’t matter what territory you’re in, it doesn’t matter what campaign you’re on, he’s like you just need to go out there and build a relationship with people. And then you can make them offers.
We’re all like, no, no, no, just give us the best territory, just give us the best territory. He’s like, all right, what’s the best territory? Well, like Times Square. Times Square, that’s the busiest place, has the most offices. Those are the businesses we want to connect with. They’re the busiest. They’re the fastest moving. They’re going to have the money. They’re going to have the employees that we need to sell the products and services that we were out there selling for in the telecom industry at the time. He’s like, all right, fine. He’s like, I’ll one up you. I’ll give you dollar bills, twenty dollar bills. Here you go, give them out, see if you can give them out to people. If you can give them all out. And be honest, I will give you a hundred dollars. And I told this story before. Some of you might remember it. Not one of us did it. Not one of us could do it, because even if we’re handing out literally free money, here you go, we couldn’t say anything. That was the difference. We couldn’t build a rapport. We couldn’t tell them why. We couldn’t tell the story. We couldn’t share anything. And that’s part of selling without selling is telling stories, sharing your story, sharing your why. We are so good at that when we allow ourselves to do it. So that being said, it doesn’t matter. Even if you’re literally giving out free money, people will still be like, no, even if they need the money, they’re like, no, truly, relationship building is key.
So too fast, too soon, avoid that. That’s one of the biggest problems. And then, oh my goodness, this one. OK, this is the fourth one. It’s the quick win problem. I have so many clients who have come to me who have said, oh, I just want to give them a quick win. OK, well, first of all, true transformation takes time. And unless you’re in a transaction business, you know, that’s not really the goal. But what I’ve come to realize, and this is something that I think a lot of women discount, is that a quick win can come in a way that most people don’t realize. So let me ask this question. Have you do you have a family? I’m sure you do. Or friends that are close to you that no matter what you say, you’re like you never listen to me, right?
You’re like, please listen to me. And you don’t feel listened to at least all the time. Right.
So if that’s the case, truly, you’re one of many. You’re in the club because most people go through life are day in and day out.
People just aren’t listening to us. So when I get on the phone with someone or when I’m teaching someone to talk to a potential client, the quick win, that big hurdle can be overcome by truly listening. Right. So the quick win can be done by asking the right questions, by truly connecting with them, by building the relationship, by avoiding these big block issues that I’ve just broken down for you so that we can truly connect. So it’s not about that hard core sales, I’m going to force you into something. You’re going to get it because I made it so enticing. Instead, it’s like it’s a two way street and this allows us to have that quick win where it’s truly just us reflecting back to them most of the time on the initial sales call. And again, I’m not always a one quick call kind of girl. I like to develop a relationship. I like to talk to people long term, because even if we don’t end up working together initially. Everybody we get on the phone with is always a connector, a collaborator or a client, and oftentimes one becomes all three over time. So that quick win is that reflection. That here’s what I heard you say. You said this. You said that. You said this is your budget. This is your timeline. This is what you’re trying to accomplish. This is what you’ve tried. This is what hasn’t worked. This is what has. Is that what I’m hearing you say? That, my friends, is gold. These are the big block issues that so many women come up against. If you have heard this today and you have identified that these are issues that you’re also experiencing, click the link and let’s continue the conversation. Have a great day. Thank you for coming to The “S” Word LIVE show today. I’ll see you guys next week.