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Sales From The Street, Donald C. Kelly, Top Seller, Contracts

TSE 1159: Sales From The Street – “The Unicorn Seller”

Jen is the unicorn seller and everyone is enchanted by her rainbow-colored sales skills. She has lots of techniques and strategies which help her close deals. You want Jen, but she’s from the competing company and just in time, you heard that Jen wants to jump ship. This is your dream come true! 

You think of Jen and you automatically think of all the clients she’s bringing along. It’s a whole list of clients and deals closed left and right. Your company will be making money and you’re going to hire more people due to expansion. Jen is the answer! 

As a top-performing sales rep, I was once Jen, too. I’ve had my fair share of being lured by other companies. I know how it feels to be offered something and to be on the receiving end of the decision whether to hire the top-performing sales rep or not. 

Before making that decision, here are some things that you need to consider.  

Why are they leaving?

We make decisions out of desperation sometimes, especially if money is included in the picture. When your sales aren’t doing too well and you need the pipeline, you want people who can bring the money in. Even if you’re snagging them from the competitor. 

You present them with a good 401k plan, you say all the nice things to convince them to jump to your company, and you tell them how fantastic your company’s culture is. 

You need to assess the situation seriously before making a hiring decision. These are some of the questions that you can ask yourself: 

  • Why are they leaving the company?
  • Are they a problem in disguise? Are you willing to take that risk?
  • Why would they come to your company when they’re already making tons of money in their current company?

The answers to these questions will help you understand their reasons and see if they’re a fit for your company’s values. 

What did they do for the competitor?

In Mark Weinberg’s book, The Sales Management Simplified, he pointed out the need for sales leaders to consider what the salesperson did for the previous company. You need to consider whether they sold at their last company. 

It is important to know the system of how their previous company worked. Find out whether they were tasked to find their opportunities or the opportunities were given to them. You need to be specific about the things they do well. 

What if the person you hire hates prospecting? After three months of work, you see no progress because that salesperson never had to prospect before and now she is having a difficult time. This situation is like putting together a jigsaw puzzle that doesn’t fit. It will never work.

Be upfront 

Many sales leaders and managers are lured into this kind of situation because they focus on the number of opportunities they will generate or the business they can get from their competitors once they’ve hired the top-earning sales rep. 

But this isn’t always the case. You must remember that contracts are of two kinds: the long-term and short-term contracts. Jen, the unicorn seller, might be able to sweet-talk some of her clients into coming with her to the new company, but clients with long-term contracts will be staying in the previous company until their contract ends. When it does, you’ll need to coax them into coming to sign with your company. It’s a long process and it takes patience. 

If that’s the case, you need to be upfront and figure out how much business Jen can bring over. Ask her how much business she is bringing along. 

Talk about the numbers and figure out how you can convince the clients to jump from their current company to yours. Think of the agreement structure and find the solution. Figure out if there’s a non-compete.

All of these things must be considered before you bring Jen along. 

Take Tom, for example. I worked with Tom before and wherever he went, his clients tagged along with him. But that isn’t always the case for some clients who are in long-term agreements. People love Tom and he would often bring a couple of businesses with him to the current company. He is a great salesperson, but even at his best, he still can’t bring all of his clients along with him. 


The fourth thing to consider is the culture of the company. Will the salesperson fit with the culture of your company? Will your sales team like the new person you’re bringing along? Is there bad blood between them in the past, perhaps like client stealing? It is challenging to fit in and adjust to the ways your company works right away. 

The new salesperson you’re hiring must be willing to follow the culture.

Have the adult talk and orient the salesperson to the ways of your company and how things work. Give her some time to adjust and if it still doesn’t work, then be ready to cut losses and move on. 

Do not toss money on something that doesn’t work. 

Contingency plan

Have a contingency plan laid out in the event that Jen, or whoever you are hiring, doesn’t work out. You can think of some other way of increasing your sales by bringing somebody else. Maybe instead of the top seller, you hire the most experienced one. 

A person with experience may not bring tons of businesses along but they come with an understanding of how to operate the business successfully. Perhaps you can hire someone who may not be Jen but who fits right in the culture of your company with proper coaching. 

Interview properly 

The last tip is to interview the prospects before hiring them. Grill them to make sure that they can do a great job. Do not cut corners and skip over the interview process. You must listen to the team and to the other executives before making the big decision. 

Going back to Jen, even if you really want to hire her, try to disqualify her just as much as you want her. If you see her desire to work for you, that’s when you know that she’s a perfect fit. That’s when you know that you found your unicorn. 

In my experience, the unicorn rarely exists. If it does, consider the tips I mentioned above. 

“The Unicorn Seller” episode resources

This episode is brought to you in part by Sales Success Summit. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit to learn more and register! 

The episode is also brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program, a helpful tool for sales leaders and sales reps to find the right customers, ask the right questions, and close powerful deals. The program has twelve courses with two courses for free! 

Visit Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

August is my birth month and it would be amazing if you share this podcast to your friends as a birthday gift! Drop us your comments and reviews on Apple podcast. We are also on Google Podcast, Stitcher, Spotify

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Rory Vaden, Ultra Performer, Procrastinate

TSE 109: Become An Ultra Performing Seller By Procrastinating on Purpose

Rory Vaden, Ultra Performer, Procrastinate

Folks… get ready to be BLOWN AWAY! I’ve got to warn you ahead that this episode has got loads (and I mean LOADS) of information that you can take away from and apply, not only to your own business or job or career, but in all other areas of your life. I personally have tried out some of the strategies mentioned here. They absolutely work! (Not to mention that this has made my life much more productive and easier.) And so, I want to share this with you.

Today’s guest is Rory Vaden, co-founder of Southwestern Consulting and is the author of New York Times bestseller Take the Stairs. Rory shares with us a load full of crisp, golden nuggets including some insights into “taking the stairs,” overcoming procrastination, and multiplying your time, which are all essential elements that have been incorporated into his new book Procrastinate on Purpose: 5 Permissions to Multiply Your Time.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Rory:

Rory’s coolest sales experience as the customer: The Nordstrom Experience

What inspired him to write his book Procrastinate on Purpose:

  • Time management as the number one thing their clients struggle with
  • Over 900 active coaching clients at Southwestern Consulting

Learning from a 2-year old that led to 2 unique parts of the book:

  • EMOTION: Time management today is emotional.
  • SIGNIFICANCE: Making decisions based on significance – How long does something matter?

How to multiply your time: The Significance Calculation

“Give yourself the emotional permission to spend time on things today that create more time tomorrow.”

3 Types of Procrastination:

  1. Classic Procrastination – consciously delaying what we know we should be doing
  2. Creative Avoidance – unconsciously filling the day with menial work or trivial work because of distraction; evident in many salespeople
  3. Priority Dilution – interruption (either consciously or unconsciously); affecting the chronic over-achievers

The essence of Procrastinate on Purpose: Giving yourself permission to say no to the urgent things that are insignificant so you can say yes to the things that are significant

Ultra-performers or Multipliers vs average individuals

The Focus Funnel

A visual depiction of the thought process multipliers use to evaluate what really is significant and what isn’t

The Parts of the Funnel

  • Top, wide part: Eliminate
  • Middle:  Automate – the permission to invest
  • Bottom: Delegate – the permission of imperfect

How it works:

  • Can it be eliminated? If not, can it be automated? If not, can it be delegated?
    1. If a task cannot be eliminated, automated, or delegated then it falls out to the bottom of the Focus Funnel.
    2. At that point, you know there has a task that must be done and it must be done by you, which leads to one remaining question:
  • Must this task be done now or can it wait until later?
  1. If the task must be done now: Concentrate (the permission to protect: focus and disallow interruptions)
  2. If the task can wait until later: Procrastinate on Purpose (POP-ing: POP (Procrastinate on Purpose) the activity back to the top of the funnel entering into a holding pattern as it cycles back through the funnel until one of the four things will eventually happen – eliminated, automated, delegated, or concentrate)

The Significance Calculation

When it comes to delegating, what drives most of us is emotion.

Eliminating the limiting belief of “No one’s going to be able to do this well as I can.”

Deconstructing and breaking it apart

The Short Cost to Living in a Shortcut Society

A “take-the-escalator mentality” is dangerously pervading into other areas of our life and we start to embrace the idea that things should be convenient.

“Enjoying it isn’t a requirement of doing it.”

Dodging the things we need to do in avoidance of making sacrifices or experiencing the pain upfront

The Pain Paradox

Easy, short-term choices lead to difficult, long-term consequences. Meanwhile, difficult, short-term choices lead to easy, long-term consequences.

“You always pay a price. You either pay the price now, today. Or you will pay it later with interest. Procrastination and indulgence are really nothing more than creditors that charge you interest.”

“Procrastination is the most expensive, invisible cost in business today… and can be the natural by-product of living in a shortcut society where we live in a world of escalators.”

“The shortest, most direct path to the easiest life is based on doing the hardest parts of things as soon as possible.”

Find out more about Rory’s amazing books:

Current projects Rory is working on:

    • Procrastinate on Purpose
  • Another book in the works!

Check out Rory’s free one-hour webinar to get a visual of the Focus Funnel and he’ll walk you through it over at

Rory’s Major Takeaway:

When you make the “significance calculation” and you start thinking a longer term the way that multipliers do, you really can multiply your time. The way that you do that is by giving yourself the emotional permission to spend time on things today that give you more time tomorrow.

“No matter who you are, how long you’ve been doing what you’re doing, success is never owned. Success is only rented… and the rent is due everyday.”

 Check our Rory’s books:

Visit Procrastinate on Purpose for a Free video webinar to learn:

5 Ways To Multiply Your Time Discover How the Greatest Leaders in the World Think Differently about Time

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John Condry, Connection Basics, The Sales Evangelist Episode 074

TSE 074: A Sales Professional’s Guide to Game Changing Performance!

John Condry, Connection Basics, The Sales Evangelist Episode 074Are you sick and tired of your mediocre sales performance and are looking for a game change? Well, I guess thats why you listen to The Sales Evangelist podcast and today we have the prefect person who can help you “change the game”. I introduce to you Mr. John Condry. John is a creator, innovator and designer of Management Concepts for today’s technology driven workforce. He is the owner of Connections Basics, a sales consulting firm dedicated to working with technology gifted partners like Brandon Bishop. They also work with reinvention, content creation, coaching, consulting and communicating management concepts that resonate with the current business environment. John has over 24 years of sales experience and he brings all of that knowledge to us today in this amazing interview.

Check out some of the major take aways from our interview.

  • Mangers are supposed to be a coach for their sales team.
  • Mangers need to treat their top sales performers as their quarter backs and work with them.
  • Sales mangers need to be able to support a sellers “plan b” and always be in their corner. (Listen to the episode for John’s definition of a “plan b”).

Four areas of sales all sellers need to have:

  1. Closing skills
  2. Marketing & prospecting
  3. Sales process
  4. Details, compliance and planing

The problem is no one person is naturally great at all of these. It takes time to develop theses qualities through practice. So this is why John created the “Connection Five” Concept (See outline below)

  • Monday: This is the day where everyone is PROSPECTING! You make the most call on this day.
  • Tuesday: Setting up and running appointments. (Run the sales process and the mangers protect them)
  • Wednesday: Setting up and running appointments. (Run the sales process and the mangers protect them).
  • Thursday: Setting up and running appointments. (Run the sales process and the mangers protect them).
  • Friday: This is where you are closing business.

Sales people need to get rid of the entitlement factor. Success takes time to accomplished so don’t beat yourself up.

Sometimes sales people try to make themselves look busy by doing tons of random unproductive activities. These unproductive activities allow them to feel good about their performance because it gives off the idea that they are doing something good.

Great quotes from John:

“Leadership is caught, not taught!”-John Condry

“Never outsource your own success as a sales person”-John Condry

“It’s either your plan or you are on someone else’s plan”-John Condry

“How you do anything is how you do everything” -John Condry

Connect with John on LinkedIn