Today we have Part Two of my interview with Bob Burg. Yesterday was the official launch day for Go-Givers Sell More, his new book. If you haven’t already bought it, go do so quickly. It’s that good.
And now back to Bob.
Q: How is this book an extension of The Go-Giver?
Bob: What we did is we took the 5 Laws from The Go-Giver and we applied them directly to the selling process. We used quotes from The Go-Giver and peppered them at the top of chapters. And we’ve gotten just terrific feedback on that. That was John’s idea, and I thought that was wonderful.
We also provide examples of people who do utilize the principles from the book and have used them to really build their business. Plus we’ve included example from people John and I have known who were doing this long before The Go-Giver was ever written.
Q: You describe 5 Laws in the book: Value, Compensation, Influence, Authenticity and Receptivity. Which one do you think gives people the most trouble?
Bob: Without question, the biggest one is the Law of Receptivity. People have said to John and to me, “Wow, the first four laws I could get my hands around like they were polished wood, but this one, the Law of Receptivity, just gave me splinters.” It’s probably the one we’ve been able to help people with the most because it’s their biggest challenge.
It’s very easy to grasp the Law of Value, and the Law of Compensation makes perfect sense, you know, increase the number of people you’re serving. The Law of Influence, that’s a matter of understanding that putting others people’s interests first is a key to success. With Law #4, Authenticity, most people want to be their best authentics, so not a problem. But the Law of Receptivity: breathing in as well as breathing out. Being able to receive in abundance. That can give people some challenges.
So that’s why we made a real point in both books to really work with people on that and really demonstrate it in a way that people could very easily embrace.
Q: Let’s say you were speaking to some people who are just starting out in sales. What one thing would you most want them to know?
Bob: The first thing I would do would be to ask them to read and study it as a profession. To understand that sales is a profession. Not only do they need to be proud of their profession but proud of their product or service and so forth. They need to absolutely understand the selling process. So they need to study the sales greats. They need to study the Brian Traceys and the Zigs, and they need to study the people out there. They also need to understand, and this is the biggest one, that in sales, it’s not about you. It’s not even about your product or service. It’s about the other person. If you can go in learning as much about selling, and being totally focused on adding value to the life of the other person, you’ve got to succeed in sales.
Q: You say that they need to study sales and the sales process, but in the beginning of the book, you take a contrarian view to the standard sales process taught by many.
Bob: No, the good ones teach it correctly. In the book it sounds like we are downplaying sales skills. We’re not. We’re saying that selling skills by themselves are not enough to make someone successful. It’s like a baseball player has to be able to throw, to hit and to run. But those in and of themselves aren’t going to make him a successful ball player. That’s just baseline. And in the same way, what we say is people have got to have belief in what they’re doing and in their product. They’ve got to have great product knowledge. They’ve got to have the sales skills, but those things are just what it takes to be invited into the game.
The superstar sales people are not superstars because they have belief, because they have product knowledge or because they have great selling skills. They have them all, but that’s not what separates them from the rest. What separates them from the rest is their total focus on the other person.
You take a look at referral-based salespeople, Juli, and what is it about them that’s so prominent? It’s that wherever they go, they spread this great good will. They tend to touch people’s lives. They make people better. They make people happier. You know? That’s the difference. And you do that by having the focus on the value you can provide to other people.
Q: And now you’re talking to some who’ve been in sales for several years. They have the passion, belief and basic sales skills. What would you say to help them take it to the next level?
Bob: I would say if they are not as successful as they believe they should be, then it’s probably the focus. And I would simple say, “Shift that focus. Make sure your focus is on the right place.”
You know, back when I was just starting to get good at sales and starting to produce, I met a salesperson who was getting ready to retire, and he gave me some words of wisdom I’ve never forgotten. He said, “Burg, if you want to make a lot of money in sales, don’t have making money as the target. The target is serving people. Now, when you hit your target, you’ll get a reward. That reward will be money. And you can do with that money whatever you want, but the money is not the target. It’s merely the reward for hitting the target. The target is serving others. Keep your priorities straight.”
Q: Good reminder on the priorities. Any final words?
Bob: Just to keep in mind the basic premise that in sales, it’s not about you, it’s about them. And if you can keep that at top of consciousness, you’re always heading in the right direction.
Thanks, Bob. I very much appreciate you taking the time to talk with me. I hope all my readers enjoyed it as much as I did.
Network (and sell) well!