Here’s how to get a world class sales education for free:
Quit your job. Cut off all forms of funding.
Take a minimum-wage gig in a call center, phoning disinterested homeowners at mealtimes. Convince them that their windows need replacing. Be successful sometimes.
Once you’re accustomed to the vitriol, hatred and rejection, move up a gear. Sell the same thing door-to-door in rundown neighborhoods, in the snow and in the rain. Be successful sometimes.
When your shoes are worn out and your patter is honed, drop the safety net and go commission-only.
Get a job in the timeshare industry. Spend four to eight hours with people brought to you under false pretenses. Get them to spend upwards of $15k on “vacation ownership” packages.
Survive two months with no sales, no money and little food.
Get through month six by the skin of your teeth, having been subbed an advance by your boss who believes in you, perhaps against his better judgement.
Repay him by making the biggest sale in the company’s history.
Reinvest thousands of your commissions on live seminars, training events and audio programs.
Learn to close. Specifically, learn the alternative close, the Roosevelt close, the impending event close, the calculator close, the assumptive close, the yes-set close, the feel-felt-found close, the puppy-dog close, the no-risk close, the handshake close, the check with the manager close.
When you can’t take the cut-throat, boiler room environment of commission-only B2C selling any longer, get into corporate services.
Cold call harassed, sweaty executives who don’t speak your native language for a few years. Make thirty to forty calls a day.
When you’re good, after a few thousand hours on the telephone, set up your own company, in direct competition with your former employer.
Make the mistake of believing that your clients will follow you, that running a company is the same as selling. (It’s not: it’s selling and a whole lot more.)
Sell millions, lose heart, leave with nothing.
Start all over again, in a new country, in a new industry, with no support network and no other form of funding.
Against the odds, make it work.
Then, and only then, can you begin to say that you’ve had a world-class sales education.
As you may have guessed, that’s my story.
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