It’s guest post Monday. Mike Holmes is the founder of Tithehacker. The purpose of the site is to stir up a revolution of radical giving. Stop by the site a get a copy of his free resource “The Revolutionary Art of Hacking the Tithe”
I’ve been in sales for a decent amount of time. I won awards, hit quota, felt the thrill of the new sales, and the gut-wrench of the lost one. I’ve heard more than my share of “no’s” “not interested” “let me think about” it “I gotta talk to my cat, get the opinion of my fish, and run it by my dog before I commit.” But this time at Xerox…I was drowning.
I’d make the appointments, see the people, bring my manager, and somehow or another lose the business…and get blamed for it. I was not doing well at all and my previous manager let me know all the time.
Then one day out of the clear blue my previous manager resigned. He found a better job elsewhere and I was suddenly put in the camp of the manager who won every sales award in the company. “Probably be no different,” I thought. “I still suck!” Boy was I wrong!
This time was different. This time thing started turning my way. For instance, the very next call we went on I saw an immediate difference. My manager gave a presentation that almost made me want to buy the machine. Then the prospect said the usual: “Let me think about it.” Then the conversation went like this:
Manager: “Think about it? Sure…sure…that sounds good. When can we follow up with you?”
Prospect: “I think Tuesday would be a good time.”
Manager:: “Ok. That sounds good. (looking at watch) How’s 1 o’clock?
Prospect: “Sure. I think we should make a decision by then.”
Manager: “Ok. That sounds great. Listen…I have another idea…”
Next thing I knew we walked out with signed paperwork and two new customers!
Only Giant Killers Can Produce Giant Killers
I was floored. I couldn’t believe it. If it was the last manager, we would’ve gotten up, thanked them for their time, and next week I’d be looking at my phone at 12:59pm on Tuesday getting ready to call. My script: “So what did you think about what we said??” But in one fell swoop he cut through the objection, gained trust, and won over two new customers. It was unbelievable. My career slowly but surely took off after that point.
It’s been proven over and over again: “EVERYTHING rises and falls on leadership.” Whether it be a sales team, a church, a business, or a family–its leadership that makes the defining difference. For instance, when I worked at Enterprise Rent-A-Car there was a guy who we’ll call “John.” John was by far the worst employee in our region. Other managers had given up on him, he hadn’t won a single award, would get into arguments with customers, and was deemed a lost cause. That’s until he came under a leader who we’ll call Dwayne.
Dwayne heard the stories, knew his background, and etc. After a few weeks of working with John and working to earn John’s respect and trust, Dwayne took John aside looked him square in the eyes and said: “I know what they said and I know your past…but listen to me carefully…this will be the last month you will be a bottom producer.”
John went on to become #1 in the region.
Leaders bring the best out
True leadership works to bring the best out of people. That’s why you’re there Mr. Leader. That’s why God called you Ms. Influence. He never gave you your gifts, strengths, talents, and resources for you; He gave it for those around you. In fact, the greatest Leader modeled this in everything He did:
“Christ’s love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything He does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness.” (Ephesians 5:26-27 MSG)
Question: In what ways can you apply these principles and thoughts into your leadership?