Archive for Sales Coaching

The Answering Objections Formula

Posted in dustin hillis, Sales Coaching, Sales Tips with tags , , , on August 25, 2014 by Dustin Hillis


How to Answer Objections

How to Answer Objections

At Southwestern ConsultingTM, we have found that there is a very proven formula to efficiently answer objections.


If you don’t follow this formula, what can happen is your prospect will continue to provide you with objections.  That can lead to frustration and spending unnecessary time and effort following up with people only to be given more objections.  These objections will seem legitimate, so you’ll spend time answering them…only to be given yet another objection.

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The Art of Not Thinking

Posted in Motivational, the art of not thinking with tags , , , , , on August 21, 2014 by Dustin Hillis


How I Discovered the Art of Not Thinking

How I Discovered the Art of Not Thinking


What is it that holds people back from reaching their true success and achieving that next level in their careers and/or personal lives?  What is that one thing—that lack of confidence—that causes us to give in, quit and stop at the moment where we could instead reach that next level of success?


That thing, that event, is called the Confidence Anchor.  There are probably events that have happened throughout your life where you have pushed through that barrier and you didn’t even realize it.  For me, the best example of this occurred during a wrestling match my junior year of high school.



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Getting Over Call Reluctance

Posted in Sales Tips, Selling Techniques, Southwestern Consulting with tags , , , , , , , on July 28, 2014 by Dustin Hillis


Getting Over Call Reluctance

Getting Over Call Reluctance

I started my career knocking on doors with Southwestern, where I worked 85 hours each week cold calling door-to-door.  Years later, when we started our business Southwestern Consulting, we started with the seminar business.


The seminar business typically includes a lot of phone work.  It wasn’t unheard of to make 100 dials per day.  I remember hiring a consultant and having him tell us that…. –> Click here to continue reading.


Understanding Key Metric Ratios

Posted in Sales Coaching with tags , , , , , , , , on July 14, 2014 by Dustin Hillis

 How to Read Key Metric Ratios

How to Read Key Metric Ratios

How to Read Key Metric Ratios

You cannot expect unless you inspect.

Understanding your key metrics, or as we call them at Southwestern ConsultingTM, your Critical Success Factors, is essential to success. So many people push, fight and refuse to track their activity and think through their ratios. Usually there are some basic, fundamental ratios that most salespeople need to know and be able to track, regardless of industry.

One of those ratios is the Dial to Reach Ratio.  That ratio measures how many phone calls you have to make/doors you have to knock on/contacts you have to make to reach one decision maker.

Another that’s important to understand is your Reach to Appointment Ratio or how many decision makers you have to talk with in order to get one of them to set an appointment with you.

The next ratio happens when you’re meeting with a decision maker.  It’s called the Appointment to Next Step Ratio or, depending on your industry, the Appointment to Close Ratio.  Sometimes Top Producers will know this ratio.  They may know, for instance, that they need to meet with four people in order to close one.  However, it is rare for someone to know his or her closing ratio.

I challenge you right now as you’re reading:  Do you know your ratios?

Are you nodding your head and feeling like you understand?  If so, the next challenge that I have for you is to think through what other ratios you aren’t tracking which you should.

A key metric that most people don’t track, that moves the needle and makes a difference, is your Referral to Meeting Ratio.

In other words, how many meetings must you run in order to get one referral?  Or, in every meeting, how many referrals do you average?  That is a key metric that can really make a huge difference.

One of the things that is really important for you and your team to understand regarding tracking activity and ratios and taking your time to actually measure your critical success factors is that this is for you.

I know that a lot of times managers will have people track their activity and the team feels as though they are being micromanaged.  But if you think about it, why wouldn’t you want to know what you’re doing in order to have something to measure against to know if you’re improving or not?

The first analogy I can give you is that measuring your ratios, or your Critical Success Factors, is like having a GPS device.  People used to fly planes without GPS devices.  They could take off, land and get where they needed utilizing very rudimentary maps and compasses and the like. This got the job done, but it wasn’t as safe, efficient or effective.  And then GPS came along…what a great thing that did for aviation!  I, for one, feel safer knowing that the plane that I’m flying on has a GPS device.

Measuring your ratios and Critical Success Factors is like having a GPS.  It will let you know if you are on course or off course.  It will guide you and let you know in which direction you need to be heading to stay on course.

The second analogy is that measuring your ratios, your Critical Success Factors, is like using a thermometer. If you go to the doctor and tell him there are all sorts of things wrong with you, but you don’t know what’s going on, it is really hard for that doctor to pinpoint whether you are sick or not without having some kind of gauge to go by.  Having a thermometer that tells your temperature will help the doctor know how to diagnose you.

Regardless, if you decide to look at it like a GPS device or a thermometer, it is really important for you to be passionate and excited about understanding how crucial it is to track your activity.

One of the tools you can use to help you create this is a goal card.  Think of this just like keeping score when you play golf.  You’ll have an Excel spreadsheet with all of your activities across the top:  your dials, reaches, appointments set, new business closed, referrals, etc.  Whatever you need to put on your goal card, put it on there.

Throughout the day, you’ll track the number of those things that you did. Every time you make a phone call you’ll make a tally mark. Every time you get a reach make a tally mark. Every time you set an appointment make a tally mark, and so on and so forth.

At the end up the day, count up your marks and, hopefully, you’ll have met your goals.  If you’re in our Top Producer’s Edge coaching program, you’re using an online activity tracking system, our Critical Success Factors website, which will log your activity.  If you don’t have that, an Excel spreadsheet works great, too.

For you to understand your ratios and always be improving one of your ratios, in addition to having a goal of constant, never-ending improvement, tweaking and finding more ways to increase your efficiency and effectiveness with those ratios will help bring up to that next level.

The LinkedIn Referral Technique

Posted in dustin hillis, Referrals, Sales Coaching, Sales Tips with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2014 by Dustin Hillis
The LinkedIn Referral Technique

Using LinkedIn for Referrals

Where do you rank in your level of expertise at asking for, expecting and getting referrals?

Are you an expert? Are you honestly getting five referrals every time you meet with somebody?

Are you a novice? Do you rarely get referrals? Is your idea of getting referrals that you do a good job and impress people and ask them to pass your name? (Or perhaps you’re a really bold novice and you give them a couple extra business cards and ask them to hand them out!)

If you practice those strategies, you need to realize that you’re doing what amateurs do. We want to be pros! We want to be the best! If you want to be the best, you have to ask for, expect and get referrals on the spot.

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