Cure for the Amateur Salesperson: Frame It!

Every parent is familiar with “fridge art” — the steady flow of drawings and paintings produced by children for household display. The gallery of choice for most families is the refrigerator. In our family, occasionally, we selected a piece of “fridge art” for framing. The transformation was immediate and astonishing. The frame made the chosen piece instantly more professional and attractive. Instead of child art trying to look professional, it became professional art conveying a childlike quality. The frame made all the difference.Child's picture

Frames are used to focus attention. They provide definition. They set apart a theme from competing subjects. But framing can refer to more than just a picture. Framing is a state of mind and cognitive processes. One’s frame of mind can influence choices, decision making and behavior. Influencing the frame of mind of a suspect or prospect is fundamental to persuasion and sales.

An amateur salesperson will ignore their prospects frame of mind. A skilled salesperson, on the other hand, will be focused on the influence they have over the frame of mind being established throughout the sales process. Even when a salesperson isn’t consciously aware, the Griffin Hill Integrity Sales System helps clients manage the frame of mind of their suspects and prospects.

The Case Open Routine helps to establish a positive frame of mind by telling the suspect who we are, what we do and why people just like them care. This leads perfectly into offering examples of how we have done that, followed by an invitation to talk about the prospect’s goals and priorities. In the Griffin Hill system, plays represent the key principles that help to establish the frame of mind. In the Case Open Routine, which is the first engagement between salesperson and suspect, the basic plays are Rapport, Position, Benefit, Proof and Schedule the Next Event. These plays create a favorable frame of mind in the suspect that stimulates interest in what the salesperson has to offer.

Often a gap of time sits between the Case Open Routine and the next step in the sales process, the Needs Audit Routine. In this in-between, the frame of mind created by the initial interaction decays and is lost, regardless of if you are an amateur salesperson or a professional one. In a complex or multi-stage sale, similar erosion can occur between the various meetings in the sales process.

Knowing how to create, nurture, sustain, and re-establish a favorable frame of mind is the domain of great salespeople. Lesser salespeople may appear to have the same level of maturity, intelligence, social skill, and work ethic as great sales people but for unseen reasons they simply can’t produce at the same rate. The answer to such an issue may be found in managing the frame mind.

Take a page from the Integrity Sales System. Create the right frame of mind in the very first interaction—the Case Open Routine. Using those same skills, start every meeting with the re-frame play—get everyone back into the same frame that you originally built around your sales process. Stimulate interest, desire, and urgency again.

Success is all a frame of mind. When you, as the sales person are armed with the right system of process and plays, it puts you in a positive frame of mind. Using the plays in a systematic way shapes the frame of mind for your suspects and prospects.

So, how do you break out of the box of the amateur salesperson and make the move to the professional? Frame It! Learn more sales tips at the Griffin Hill Youtube channel!

Objections — Stepping Stones to Success

For a salesperson, objections should not come as any surprise. Prospects objecting to a sales pitch is incredibly common—even expected. Yet still, when we hear an objection, our body seizes up, we break out in cold sweat, and we are tempted to pounce to silence all possible objections. We do so, usually with the best intentions, namely, we desire to help hush the fears of our prospects. Unfortunately, we typically battle the prospects objection aggressively. The question then becomes: how do you effectively deal with objections without making it a confrontation?

First, what most people jump to that you shouldn’t, is pressure the prospect. Do not apply pressure, not in the least. Should someone push against you, the natural human response is to push back just as hard – to resist. Obviously this is not a place you want to be as a salesperson. Pressure, pushing, and guilting your prospect is the kiss of death in an objection scenario.

In the ancient martial art of Tai Chi Chuan it is illustrated that to be rooted to the ground, you must be like a mountain. The same principle is true in the case of an objection. Should you choose to go outside and push against the mountain, you won’t find much success in moving it. However, the mountain equally does not push back at you. In martial arts, to push back would be to imbalance yourself, making you vulnerable to attack. In the case of a sale, pushing back will also throw off your balance and you will be vulnerable to losing this deal. Be like the mountain. Be strong, rooted, and confident in your reaction to the objection, but do not push back against your prospect.

In reality, objections can be a great stepping stone towards a successful close, rather than an obstacle standing in your way. Rather than immediately justifying or parrying the objection, ask additional questions. Seek to understand better the objection and where your prospect is coming from. The first key to solving a problem is naming the problem. You must understand your prospect’s concerns at the roots and it is essential that you understand it from their perspective, not just your own.

These same principles are used in many other areas to build relationships rather than tear them down. Asking questions has been used in marriage counseling, therapy, and relational communication. Asking questions about the objection leads to understanding. Contradicting the objection leads to arguments.

After understanding the objection, diagnose it. If you solve it—then solve it. If you cannot immediately solve the problem, then minimize it. This is one of the main plays in the Integrity Sales System that we call Overcoming the Objection Play. The beauty of it is in its simplicity. The power of this play is like the mountain—humbly immovable and resolute, neither yielding, nor fighting back. Overcoming the Objection is directly applicable to both the sales system and to every day relationships. By applying these principles, you will be able to use Objections as stepping stones. You will close more deals. Give it a try – and check out more on the Integrity Sales System and its series of effective plays by clicking here.

Is the Era of American Entrepreneurship Dead?

Early in American History, a Frenchman came to view the success of this new, recently discovered territory. He was impressed with the feeling of teamwork, commonality, and the treatment of women in America. More importantly, he was impressed by America’s ability to give all of it’s citizens equal opportunity to thrive. That is sometimes called the spirit of Entrepreneurship. Alexis concluded that the people of America, in this spirit, are what make this country wonderful and prosperous. He then warned, “If America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” Being election year, this observation rings true more than ever.

On March 21st 2016 an American President visited Cuba for the first time in over 80 years. In a joint news conference between the leaders of the two countries, Cuban Dictator Raul Castro blamed the United States for the poverty of his nation. He lectured Mr. Obama on human rights, poverty, violence and race tensions in America while the President of the United States nodded his head in agreement.

A news anchor for one of the three major media networks lauded the intention of communism and its goals of equality. He spoke admiringly of the hope of communism to elevate the circumstances of the people.

Such high praise for Cuba’s communistic regime ignores the reality of economic conditions that causes its citizens to flee the country at the very risk of life. Cuban refugees fleeing the country not only risk their lives to the common threats of dehydration, starvation, and the open seas–they also risk attack and death at the hand of their own government who famously sank a ship holding more than 30 refugees, including children. Within hours of Mr. Obama’s visit, 18 Cuban refugees were rescued by a cruise ship after 22 days of desperation on the open sea. They were dehydrated, sick, and dying. Nine of their companions had already perished.

People who escape communist-totalitarian rule from countries like Libya and Cuba are called refugees.

People who leave Europe’s socialist nations are called immigrants

As Alexis De Tocqueville, the author of Democracy in America noted, “the happy and the powerful do not go into exile.”

Communism, socialism, and capitalism are economic systems influenced by laws and tax policies of sovereign nations without regard to form of government. In recent years America’s policies have moved distinctly socialistic, the opposite of an entrepreneurship spirit.

Formerly, our nation’s representative democracy favored equality of opportunity and equality before the law. Socialism favors equality of current economic condition. Making economic conditions equal among people requires the perpetual re-distribution of wealth.

The following definitions and the thoughts from Alexis de Tocqueville are timely and worthy of thought. See what ideas they stimulate for you regarding the coming elections.

Communism:
A system of social organization in which all economic and social activity is
controlled by a totalitarian state dominated by a single and self-perpetuating
Political party. (1)

Socialism:
The stage following capitalism in the transition of a society to communism,
characterized by the imperfect implementation of collectivist principles.

Capitalism:
An economic system in which investment in and ownership of the means of
production, distribution, and exchange of wealth is made and maintained
chiefly by private individuals or corporations, especially as contrasted to cooperatively or state-owned means of wealth.

The following quotes come from Alexis De Toqueville’s Democracy in America which I found to be equally beneficial and enlightening:

  • “America offered a thousand new paths to fortune and placed riches and power within the reach of the adventurous and the obscure”.
  • “The exercise of the intellect became the source of strength and wealth”.
  • “During my stay in the United States, nothing struck me more forcibly than the general equality of conditions. Equality of conditions is the fundamental fact from which all others seem to be derived.”
  • “The poor man retains the prejudices of his forefathers without their faith, and their ignorance without their virtues; he has adopted the doctrine of self-interest as the rule of his actions.”

Reflect on those words by Alex De Toqueville. The decision of the future remains with us. You and I are the hope of America! Continue to ponder on these few points as you consider your decisions, both in the upcoming election and in your daily life.

Read more about how your entrepreneurship gives you power to affect America for the better by clicking here! 

Happy Election Year!

(1) Definitions from Dictionary.com
(2) Democracy in America

The Power of Will

One of the most transcendent and beautiful human attributes is a personal will. Few other words are more evocative and rich in meaning. Will is sometimes mistaken as just a desire – a hope! Will is so much more than that. A person’s will is their conscious ability to turn desire into action. For that reason, the power of will is often associated and wrapped together with goal setting to make up a package of sustained success. As long as one’s will endures and goals are created and evaluated, success will always be found in rich abundance.

The power of will is further expressed by James A. Owen, a writer of fiction, comic books, and an inspirational speaker on the topic of overcoming adversity. He asserts: “ If you really want to do something, no one can stop you. If you really don’t want to do something, no one can help you.” (1) In short – it is one’s personal power of will that defines whether or not they reach their desired outcome. If we have enough will to do something, we act.

At Griffin Hill, we enjoy the poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox: “Will”. This poem gives deep insight into the power of one’s personal will. Here are a few insights from it: “There is no chance, no destiny, no fate, / can circumvent or hinder or control / the firm resolve of a determined soul.” There it is! It is he who has the will to do that truly has determination and control. Will holds greater power than destiny, chance and fate, for it is the authoritative figure of them. Now, pay attention very closely to this next section: “Gifts count for nothing; will alone is great.” Those are strong words. In every endeavor, including sales, we are tempted to focus on talent. We focus on charisma. We focus on the sales gene. All are filled with false hope. Although it is true that some have natural gifts that make them great in their chosen vocation, as we just learned – gifts count for absolutely nothing! Will alone is great – and everyone’s got that, in one degree or another. Great talent without a will to act count for nothing. Zero. Nada. Nil.

At Griffin Hill, we focus on the association of personal will and systems. Sales performance is driven by systems. In reality, everything is driven by a system – whether we realize it or not. Research shows that we will only rise as high as the systems that we employ. If that system is faulty, the results will reflect it sooner or later. Griffin Hill is based on systems. Systems that have no gap. Systems that have no fault. Systems that, when employed correctly, lead to success.

It is not uncommon to run into the issue of a will that has slackened. When the power of will is mentioned, there will always be those who feel they cannot rise to the occasion. They have tried to succeed in their business or personal life over and over again and feel they have failed hundreds of times. They then become tempted to give up. To quit. Their will buckles.

That is exactly why one of our seminars is called “Strengthen the Weakened Will”. No matter what the landscape of your personal will looks like, you can get a great amount of helpful information from the video on strengthening a weakened will. Whether your will is near collapsing, or on cloud 9, you can boost your will to a higher plane. Doing so will bring you to a higher level of revenue and goal achievement. Assess your will by taking the quick poll below! To learn more about strengthening your will, go get Dr. Baird’s video by clicking here.

(1) Owen, James A. Drawing out the Dragons: A Meditation on Art, Destiny, and the Power of Choice. Salt Lake City, UT: Shadow Mountain, 2013. Print.

Foundations of the High Performance Journal

Any student of the Griffin Hill Integrity Sales System is aware that good questions have power. Questions shape the thoughts, ideas, and conclusions of sales suspects and prospects. The Integrity Sales System is filled with opportunities to ask great questions.

Less familiar, but deeply embedded in the system are intent questions like the one used in the Insurance Play: “Will you promise me that before you buy from anyone else, you’ll talk to me first?” All the research demonstrates that such a question forms intent in the mind and heart of a prospect. Statistics show that prospects who make such a promise, keep their promise.

Questions affect behavior.

That’s why good questions are one of the main skills in the salesperson’s bag of tools. However, few people realize that good questions are also one of the great secrets to elevating personal performance. Good questions can shape intent, facilitate the research process, and serve as the foundation for setting and achieving personal and organizational goals.

A recent report by Spanenberg et al (2015) reviewed more than 100 studies related to the topic of the so-called Question-Behavior Effect. Researchers concluded that asking questions about certain target behaviors influenced the future performance of that behavior. In light of the conclusions of this multi-university study, the power of critical thinking in elevating goal oriented behavior becomes clear. Many of the studies used by Spanenberg and his team, including the Question-Behavior Effect form the foundation for the theory promoting the Griffin Hill High Performance Journal (HPJ).

As the Spanenberg et al study confirmed, written declarations evoke higher levels of adherence to the promised behavior. The High Performance Journal (HPJ) asks you the right questions that lead you to answers. The High Performance Journal stimulates deep processing of information and ideas in the Reflect and Write section of the journal. In processing, the writer will answer the most important question: “In order to accomplish my desired outcome, what will I do?”

The pattern of critical thinking stimulated in users of the Griffin Hill High Performance Journal helps them to formulate their own goals, make commitments to engage correct behavior, and hold themselves accountable using the self-report section of the journal. The self-report and accountability aspects of the journal further stimulate the deep mental processes of evaluation. Evaluation begins by reporting on positive performance—what went well, followed by one or more things that could be improved. In this way the performer learns from successful performance as well as from stumbles. Finally, based on the performance outcome, the journal writer scores his performance on 5 dimensions of achievement.

The critical thinker using the Griffin Hill High Performance Journal will be able to select a desired outcome more easily. The desired outcome is mobilized by declaring at least one but no more than three action items. These action items express the will and commitment to behave with a goal orientation.

Goal orientation is reinforced by accountability. When the performer evaluates behavior in terms of things that went well, followed by a single opportunity to improve, performer commitment and ability are elevated.

Great questions elevate persuasive power. Persuasive power can be used to influence ourselves as well as others. We can use questions to form personal intent, improve individual behavior and elevate personal results.

Whether you are a beginning achiever or an advanced strategist, a formal pattern of self-inquiry can elevate your performance. The research proves it. So today’s question:

Will you investigate the power of the Griffin Hill High Performance Journal? Click here for yes.

What Signal Am I Sending?

Everything that we do, day-to-day, affects how we interact with others – even when we don’t notice it. We use our body to give off ideas and impressions. When we take intentional, planned action to take control, we become more effective in conveying the correct messages. Ask yourself: What signal am I sending?

Body language is too often overlooked when you consider that it controls 55% of the signal that you send – and body language does more than send signals to others, it actually sends signals to yourself which contributes to determining your mood. The words you actually say make up only 7% of that signal. Body language is incredibly powerful! It can make or break relationships. That may sound incredibly daunting, but as soon as you are made aware of your own body language, you will have the power to control it.

Visualize your usual posture. You can think about it in really any context: Sitting at work, talking with a friend, selling to a prospect, even the posture you have right now – you use body language all the time! If needed, watch your posture in the mirror as you talk. With hope to give you greater control over your body language, here are some of the most powerful ways you can revolutionize it to your advantage. First, remember that you should have open body language. Don’t cross your arms and legs. This is a way to close yourself off and that kind of signal comes across subconsciously to the people around you. It is a defensive stance. Sit up straight and don’t slouch your shoulders. Finally, don’t be too afraid to take up some of the space around you by standing with your legs a bit further apart and with your shoulders broadened by standing or sitting up straight. This shows confidence in your surroundings and comfort in who you are.

Unfortunately, it is second nature to adopt a tick of some sort that we use over and over again in a conversation. These nervous habits have a negative impact on the overall message we try to convey. Here are some common ticks to avoid: hair twirling, placing your hand over your mouth, rubbing your arm or your leg, wringing your hands, and slumping too much. These all take away from your message by making you appear lacking in confidence or even disinterested. Instead, create a habit of smiling. This has a powerful effect on mood. Smiling has been proven to be contagious, attractive, and boosts your mood. As a matter of fact, research shows that smiling triggers the chemical reward centers of the brain. Smiling can be used as a “fake it till you make it” response as well. This is something called brain empathy. Simply put, your body responds to the emotions you are feeling but the process works in reverse as well. You can use your own body language to condition your emotions. Smiling is the perfect example of that. Smiling long enough will actually make you happier.

As a final recommendation, nod your head when another is talking. Do so at appropriate moments to show the listener than you are processing what they are saying and are attentive to them. However, keep in mind that you should use it carefully. You don’t want to look like Woody Woodpecker slamming your nose over and over again into every phrase they say.

Body language has power. By becoming its master, you become the master of the messages that you convey. The strength that inherently comes from that kind of self-control will reward you in your business transactions with more closes and stronger relationships.

Looking for more tips and tricks to revitalize your sales world? Click here for more! 

Footnotes:

Stevenson, Sarah. “There’s Magic in Your Smile: How Smiling Affects Your Brain.” Psychology Today. 25 June 2012. Web. 01 Mar. 2016.

Systems Guarantee Success

Success is independent of luck!

Peruse the popular page of Pinterest. Go look at your friend’s Facebook wall. Or, stop by your local thrift store and look in the home décor section. You’re likely to see a variety of memes or wall hangings devoted to luck, fate, or destiny. Upon reading these various sayings, you might be convinced that those three concepts are out of your hands. It’s simply up to the cosmos the way our lives flow.

We don’t believe this at Griffin Hill.

William Jennings Bryan once said, “Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.” We believe this to the fullest extent. You create your destiny. You create your fate. Of course, there are situations out of your control, but much of life can be controlled through hard work, dedication, and a strong will. The financial success of your business is not up to fate.

Outside of the trendy Facebook inspiration memes, your systems and will are what control your destiny, not luck. Without a system in place, you are not destined to succeed. You are left to reach only as high as your system will allow. What is your system? Do you have one?

You don’t?

So, what system is guiding your success? We know that systems create guidelines and rules that, if followed, ensure achievement. At Griffin Hill, we have “The System!” Our proven method drove Xerox Connect’s revenue to rise 300% in their first year with us. 300% is not achieved by accident. It’s not reached by luck. It’s attained through hard work and following a system.

The Griffin Hill System is patented and proven. It will change your life. If you follow it exactly, you will see unrivaled growth and upward changes in your economic life. Our system is proven. Follow it, and watch your destiny change.

After all, it’s up to you.

CPI – Learn Your Language

You are at a networking event. As you finish a conversation you return to your table and think: “Why didn’t I connect with that person?” No matter how hard you try, you just can’t put your finger on why there was an “off” feeling or miscommunication between the two of you. Humans are complicated machines. We’re wired in specific ways. That’s what makes us who we are.

Many of us, seeking to understand ourselves and our peers turn to personality quizzes on Facebook. We look for our love language, our color of personality, the Disney princess we are most like, or what kind of politician we should vote for. These tests can be fun and interesting, if not deep and substantial.

There is a test that is both. It is fun, interesting, substantial and has deep, personal meaning. We call it the Cognitive Preference Index — or CPI. It is the means to really learn your language.

CPI is a powerful tool available at Griffin Hill. Its power allows individuals to gain discoveries about who they are and how they relate to others. You can then take action to build relationships and work more productively. CPI works wonders with the business as a whole, gelling employees together by encouraging them to use their unique attributes to achieve a common goal. These results show exactly which domains of human cognition you prefer to use when relating to others. These results include Logic, Order, Emotion and Vision.

CPI (Cognitive Preference Index) promotes self-discovery in a variety of ways that are immediately applicable! Your interactions with others will suddenly become more clear and simple. Mastering the ability to use all of the four parts of your mental cognition is crucial to being able to relate to others.

As a taste test of the results, those powerful in logic and order are realists. They are systematic and schedule their way to success. They are organized, straight forward and grounded in their approach to problems. As for those who score high in emotion and vision, they are idealists. They are optimistic, empathetic, revolutionary, and keen on understanding the feelings of individuals. They are enthusiastically goal oriented. Being strong in one area is evidence that you find that skill more comfortable to work from than the others, but note that it doesn’t mean you cannot communicate well in the other areas.

That brings us back to your networking situation where, for some odd reason, you just didn’t connect the way you thought you would with someone. The answer is that you might have been speaking from logic, your comfortable way of relating to others. What you didn’t know at the time was that they were trying to interact with you using emotion, their most comfortable way of relating to others. Through Griffin Hill’s CPI system, you can learn how to relate to others from their preferred domain, and those connections will be strong, unyielding, and will lead to real results. Learn more about your CPI today. Learn your language by clicking here!

Also, Join our free CPI Event at our Provo Griffin Hill office on Friday, June 30th 2017

What is My Potential?

The construct of human potential is fascinating. What is the capacity of an individual? How much can one person achieve? How great a contribution can someone make to their organization, community or society? How is that potential nurtured, cultivated, explored and exploited? These questions tantalize the mind of a human performance scientist.

My peers in the study of human performance science are among the brightest and most able minds of our day. We have a greater body of research to draw upon than any other generation. We have the luxury of building on the foundation established by generations of research science. Information is more readily available than ever before. It makes the exploration of human potential a truly exciting proposition for a human performance nerd like me.

Though nerds love to study the science, we all have an interest in the research conclusions. We all want to do better—perform at a higher level. Whether we enjoy competition or not—competition is thrust upon us. We compete for better jobs, more income, richer benefits. Improving our performance improves our lives so we all want to reach a little bit higher, do a little bit better, test the limits of our potential.

Certain principles stand out as important for everyone interested in getting better, doing more and reaching higher. The first is that stretching, reaching and hoping are essential principles of growth. Next, the achievement psyche is fragile—reach too high, hope for too much, stretch too far and it breaks under the weight of learned helplessness. Lastly, carefully nurtured with incremental improvement, the potential for individual growth is mind-boggling, perhaps limitless!

It may seem that tapping our potential is an unsolvable puzzle; that those three principles are difficult or even impossible to follow. Rather than intentional growth we might think we are relegated to bouncing through life with all the bumps and bruises that experience provides. In this model, growth is something that happens to us, in random and unpredictable ways.

One of the brightest of my human performance peers is Dr. Thomas Gilbert. He shined the light of understanding on a secret key of tapping into our human potential: World Class. That’s the secret. That’s the key.

World Class means defining the performer’s world and best-in-class results. A high school athlete running the 400 meter may define his world as the region in which he competes. A more skilled or mature high school runner may consider the entire state as her world. It would be premature to compare herself to collegiate athletes. A younger or inexperienced athlete might want to define his world more narrowly. He might choose a world including other newcomers in his own school. Start by defining your world in terms of performers with similar experience and skill in a narrow geography.

Experience and proven skill level are key factors when defining the world in which the performer competes. Broader comparisons are unrealistic. They risk disappointment and discouragement that erode confidence and effort.

After defining your world, the next step of World Class is to identify the best of class result in the world as we have defined it. A newbie would consider the best time posted by her teammates in the current year. Our high school athlete might choose the regional record at his distance. The more experienced athlete would look at the state record. The best results in the performer’s world defines his immediately achievable potential!

As a performer approaches the mark that previously defined World Class for her, she enlarges her world to include others of her current experience and skill level. Enlarging her world gives her a new target. In this way performers establish a rhythm of continuous improvement.

Identifying a target goal that represents imminent potential is a remarkable first step in the achievement process. Defined in this way, the principle of World Class 1. Stimulates performers to reach, stretch and hope 2. Protects against discouragement that erodes effort and 3. Carefully nurtures incremental improvement.

Thank you Dr. Gilbert, for shining light on this secret key to individual growth, performance and achievement. World Class. An entire encyclopedia of human performance technology wrapped up in two words.