Archive for southwestern advantage

Selling Systems: Self-Management Systems

Posted in southwestern company, Southwestern Consulting, time management with tags , , , , , , on February 13, 2013 by Dustin Hillis

Selling Systems

Today I was doing field training with one of our Southwestern Consulting Market Managers (Neal Anderson) in Raleigh, NC.  Our first meeting was with a personal coaching client of mine whom I’ve been coaching for over 3 years named Bob Watral.  Bob is a former VP at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and has been in the financial planning industry for over 20 years and is one of the most coachable people I know.  Our next meeting was at one of the top real estate offices in Raleigh, and Neal signed up the managing broker of the office for the Manager’s Edge coaching.  Then our next meeting was at a New York Life office where Neal was already coaching the manager and ended up signing up another producer for the Top Producer’s Edge coaching program.  Upon reflecting on the day’s activities, I feel that all 4 of the people we met with today who are enrolled in our program have one thing in common that they need help with. Although they work at different companies in different industries and have different levels of experience, the common denominator is they all need help creating and maintaining more effective and efficient Selling Systems.

The Southwestern Family of Companies is comprised of Southwestern Investments Group (the #1 Raymond James financial planning firm in the world), Great American (the largest school fundraising company in the world), SBR Recruiting (the #1 recruiting company in the state of Tennessee), Southwestern Advantage (one of the oldest direct sales businesses in the United States), Family Heritage (a large supplemental insurance company), Tom James (the world’s largest custom clothier), Wildtree (one of the fastest growing party planning businesses in the United States), a handful of other various businesses ranging from the music industry, time shares, international work and travel documents, and an award-winning publishing company.   People often ask me “how is Southwestern involved in so many different industries?  What’s the common thread?”  The answer to that question is why Southwestern Consulting exists.  All of the Southwestern companies have one thing in common – Selling Systems.

Selling Systems are the foundation of all the Southwestern companies…and they’re the foundation of almost every successful company, manager and top producer.

What are “Selling Systems”?   There are 3 key Selling Systems that Southwestern has perfected over the past 155 plus years that we help instill in our coaching clients.

Selling System #1:  Self-Management Systems

Out of the hundreds of people we coach every year, Time Management is the #1 area of improvement most people need help creating systems around.  A lot of people are working a lot of hours… they’re just not maximizing the time during the hours they work.

Here are the top 3 systems you can create for yourself to help manage your time better:

1. Schedule Tool – A schedule tool is a spreadsheet that has every day of your week broken down hour-by-hour.  How you use the Schedule Tool is you open it up every Sunday and take an hour to literally plan out every hour of your week, every phone call, every meeting, prospecting time, email time, lunch, paperwork time… but beyond that you have to schedule your personal life also!  What time you’re going to wake up, read books, workout, date night, and personal development training.

Here is an example of one of my coaching clients Schedule Tool:

Schedule Tool

Schedule Tool for Time Management

2. Goal Card – A Goal Card is one of the cornerstone tools that Southwestern has used to ensure success over the past century.  One of the keys to a Goal Card is that it breaks down your day into working “goal periods”.  A “goal period” is a 2 hour block of your day where you have specific activity goals to achieve.  You should break your whole day down into “goal periods” and have activity goals for each “goal period”.  Separating your day out to 2 hour increments will help you get more done in 2 focused hours than what most people do all day.

Click Here To Download Your Selling Systems Goal Card

Selling Systems

Selling Systems

3. Critical Success Factor Tracker – “You cannot expect unless you inspect.”  It’s hard to know how to improve your performance unless you track what you’re doing all day long and then measure the activity against the daily activity goal.  In the Southwestern ConsultingTM sales performance coaching program, we have designed a software program that makes this an easy process that takes 2 minutes at the end of the day to tally up your daily activity statistics off of your Goal Card and enter them onto your CSF report.

Here is an example of the Southwestern Consulting Critical Success Factors tracking tool all of our coaching clients use everyday and review with their coach:

Critical Success Factors

Critical Success Factors Activity Tracking Tool

  • Once you have several months of CSF data, you can start self-managing yourself and comparing your ratios to the previous month and make sure your daily activity numbers are always improving.

If you are reading this and think “this is the kind of stuff I need in my business”, we can help!  We have a team of experts that help implement these types of systems in companies across America every day.  For more information:

… stay tuned for the other two Selling Systems.

The Art of Recognition

Posted in Sales Coaching with tags , , , on February 15, 2012 by Dustin Hillis

Dan Moore, the President of Southwestern Advantage, enjoyed reading the last 3 blogs (that were inspired by his leadership principles) so much that he honored us with one of his legendary articles on Recognition.  Enjoy!

                     The Art of Recognition

Every human strives for different things in his or her life, but one of the common desires—perhaps THE greatest desire—is the desire to be recognized and appreciated. In an increasingly complex world, it is progressively easier for an individual to feel that what they do simply doesn’t matter. This can lead to feelings of insignificance; and people who feel insignificant DO NOT become world leaders in providing the ultimate in sales and service.

As a leader, you have an opportunity to help each of the people you lead feel more significant, more confident, and more capable. As their leader, you can increase their results temporarily by ‘motivating’ them to a higher level of activity, but you can increase their results permanently by increasing their sense of self-worth and competence. Best of all, you can do it with something that doesn’t cost a penny: effective praise and recognition.

If this is so effective, and so low-cost, why don’t leaders do it more? There are many reasons, but some of the most common include these misperceptions:

‘They shouldn’t need praise from me. They know their job is to sell, and when they have sold a lot they are doing their job. That should be enough.’  (But it’s not enough, is it, or they would be selling more)

‘Too much praise will make them complacent. They need to have a sharp edge if they’re going to succeed.’  (Sales professionals who feel good about themselves are much better able to make the consumer feel good about what they buy.)
‘Nobody praises me, and I’m doing all right.’ (To be given the opportunity to lead and manage is significant praise by itself.)

‘I’m too busy managing sales.’ (Usually, this means ‘too busy reading reports’ and spending very little time in one-on-one interaction with salespeople.)

In reality, one of the most common reasons praise and recognition aren’t given more freely is that the leader doesn’t know how to do so sincerely and motivationally. Praise and recognition are not the same as empty flattery or lightweight compliments. There is much more to it…

If you are enjoying what you’ve been reading, and think you’d like to hear about what we look for in people that we team up with and coach, fill out the following:

Leadership Tips from Dan Moore (Part 3: Leadership by Example)

Posted in Sales Coaching with tags , , , , , , , on January 30, 2012 by Dustin Hillis

Leadership By Example.

“You cannot teach what you don’t know; you cannot lead where you won’t go.”

At Southwestern ConsultingTM, we have a saying “if you want respect around here… go sell something.”  The reason I’m personally committed to working as a partner at the Southwestern Family of Companies is because the leadership lives by this philosophy, “You cannot teach what you don’t know; you cannot lead where you won’t go.”

Dan Moore

Dan Moore, the President of the Southwestern Advantage

Henry Bedford

Henry Bedford the CEO/ Chairman of the Board of the Southwestern Family of Companies

Spencer Hays

Spencer Hays the majority shareholder of all of the Southwestern Family of Companies, Founder of Tom James, and many more successful businesses

Dan, Henry, and Spencer have all personally been in the trenches and sold books door-to-door to earn their stripes at Southwestern.

When Dan Moore takes the stage, his keynote is called “Mr. Mediocrity” and he goes on to tell a story about how he personally learned how “his mind is not his friend”, and how he first learned how to use Positive Mental Attitude techniques to help rewire his negative way of thinking.  Anyone who knows Dan would agree that he is one of the most positive people on earth.  Dan personally sold books, recruited teams to sell books and managed people on the field.  When Dan recruited people, he would tell them “I’m not going to ask you to do anything that I’m not willing to do”.  Living by this philosophy is probably one of the main reasons that Dan has gone from being an intern selling books door-to-door as a college student at Harvard University to now being the President of the Southwestern Advantage.

At Southwestern ConsultingTM, we take the leadership example from Dan Moore and apply to everything we teach and do.  In order for someone to be a Southwestern ConsultingTM Certified Sales Performance Coach, they have to have 10 years of experience and certifiable awards of being a top producer.  Additionally, all of our coaches have to sell coaching in order to be a coach.  In order to be relevant and provide true value to our clients, we believe a coach’s successes in the past, books they’ve written, and amazing accomplishments they’ve achieved is what gets them in the position of being a coach.  But actually selling coaching and personally being a top producer is what makes them a great coach, and how they keep their job, and ultimately become a partner in our consulting firm!

“You cannot teach what you don’t know; you cannot lead where you won’t go.”

For more information about Southwestern ConsultingTM Sales and Leadership Coaching:

Leadership Tips from Dan Moore – Part One

Posted in Leadership Coaching, Sales Tips with tags , , , , , , on January 17, 2012 by Dustin Hillis
Dan More Leadership First Impressions

Dan Moore

Dan Moore (the President of the Southwestern Advantage and partner at Southwestern Consulting) hosted the 26th Annual Southwestern Company “Great Recruiters Seminar” in Nashville, TN recently. After the Freddie’s Awards banquet, I had the honor of discussing Leadership ideas with Dan.

Here are the top 3 leadership lessons from Dan Moore:

1. A Great Introduction Determines the Outcome of the Presentation.

The way you introduce someone is a window for them to see what you really think about them… which will affect the way they see themselves.

Dan Moore’s Tips for a Great Introduction:

Group Introduction Tips

  • Interview the person you are going to introduce and find out one thing personal and one thing in business that is interesting.
  • Interview the manager/or a close friend/ or family member of the person you’re introducing and find out about something about their past that other people might not know.
  • Write down as much information as possible about the person you’re introducing in a bullet point outline of everything you’re going to say in the introduction. That way if you forget a couple of points, you’ll have more then enough information about them.
  • Study the note card 1o minutes before you introduce and then put the note card away.
  • One-on-One Introduction

When introducing 2 people who haven’t met, it is a golden opportunity to build them up and help further define their role on the team.

  • Think of 3 things that are truly unique about each person you work with.
  • Think of 3 things that each person on the team is gifted in.
  • Think of a couple of areas each person contributes to the team that other people might not know about.
  • Don’t hold back about really amplifying how amazing someone is when introducing them to someone who has never met them.

Dan Moore shared a story with me about when Dan was on the Marketing Team at Southwestern and he went to film a speech by Mort Utley and the person introducing Mort did a very sub-par job on the introduction. Dan said that Mort had to spend the first 15 minutes of the 30 minute speech establishing credibility and connecting with the crowd. By the end of the speech, Mort had won the hearts of the spectators over (as he always did) and walked to the back of the room with Dan as everyone was leaving. Mort looked at Dan and taught him a lesson he’s never forgotten, he said “Dan promise me this. When you introduce someone, make sure you put as much energy and enthusiasm as you’d want someone to do for you. Otherwise, you’re setting someone up to spend a majority of their time digging out of the hole you put them in.”

… Stay tuned for the other 2 lessons from Dan Moore in weeks to come.

%d bloggers like this: