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Beyond Growth Inc. | Markham, ON

If you’ve been in sales for more than six months, and you’re still making cold calls, you’re on the wrong track. You're not going to reach the top. Traditional trainers might be proud of you for making these cold calls, but the top sales performers would tell you you're wasting your time. There’s a better way to get to the top.

You know about the 80/20 Rule, don’t you? In sales, you get 80 percent of your business from 20 percent of your customers. Well, the same rule applies to prospecting. Go to your local library and read "The Law of Compensation" in the book Emerson’s Essays. In one simple sentence, it says, "Give more, get more." If you spend your time every day looking for someone who will consider your product or service, you're working harder, but not smarter.

Top sales performers spend 80 percent of their time servicing their clients and customers, and only 20 percent of their time prospecting. You can only do that comfortably if you understand Emerson’s Law of Compensation.

I learned about Emerson’s Law while listening to a recording from an insurance salesman named Gandolfo. The recording was part of the collection that I sold at the time. Gandolfo explained that he was doing a mediocre job spending 80 percent of his time selling and 20 percent servicing his clients. Then he discovered the Law of Compensation. Gandolfo wondered what would happen if he reversed his work habits. What if he spent 80 percent of his time servicing his clients, and only 20 percent of his time selling? Once he made the switch and committed his time to his clients, he discovered that his clients started selling for him!

And that’s what happened when I stopped spending most of my time selling my product and started spending most of my time servicing people by teaching them reinforcement training. I was not satisfied by simply selling motivational programs. I wanted people to use the materials and benefit from them. But people told me that I was foolish for giving away my time. I disagreed. I believed in Emerson. I believed that by giving more, I would get more, and it happened. As much as 80 percent of my business was a result of referrals from people who benefited from my training and coaching.

Top sales performers get their clients and customers to prospect for them.

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Excerpted from You Can't Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar, by David H. Sandler. © 1995 David H. Sandler. All rights reserved.

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