06 Jan January 6, 2020 – Sales Warrior Jason Forrest & Power Habits Noah St. John
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95% of the habits and behaviors that we are operating on come from our subconscious mind. We are only in
our conscious mind 5% of the time. That’s insane!
Highlights from Jason’s Interview
We actually just won the last Best Place to Work Award today, and we were in the top 10 Best Places to Work in Fort Worth, and we all know that means that we were 10th place. So we are excited. There were thousands of applicants that tried, and we were number 10, so we were happy. Again, the tricky part of that whole thing, is not to win at once. That’s easy, in my opinion, but it has to be a fast-growing company and have that year-over-year revenue and all the stress of that, and at the same time be profitable, and at the same time create a Best Place to Work environment. So, we’re most pleased that we can do multiple things at the same time, and do it consistently. That’s, to me, the true measure of success. So, thank you.
The primary question of our business is how can we be a year-over-year, fast growth company? Based on Inc. Magazine, 50% year-over-year growth from a three-year average is the standard to make the cut. The second goal is to be profitable. We consider a healthy company to be at least a 10% net profit. Our goal is 50%. And then number three, the third thing is the best place to work. Why I think it’s important to have all three is that a lot of companies, they focus on just becoming a Best Place to Work organization. They go at it the wrong way, meaning that it’s the best place to work, and yes, we’re going to work only a couple hours a week, and we’re going to have Skinny Jean Friday, and Ice Cream Thursday and all kinds of stuff like that. That’s not the purpose of it. The purpose of it is to have highly engaged employees, so that you can be profitable, so that you can be fast-growing, so you can innovate, so you can do all of these things. That’s our metric. That’s why it’s important for us to have the other two, the profitability and the revenue, because it balances out the third. There are a lot of companies I know that are Best Place to Work organizations, but you could blow the entire building up at four o’clock on a Friday, and no one would be there. They’re not productive, not innovating. We believe it’s important to do all three.
How do we do that? We do several things. One is, I am very involved as the CEO and owner of the company. I’ve been involved for the last nine years, but every Monday I have a thing called Monday Mission Meeting. That’s where I address all the employees—we have 30 plus employees—and I address all of them, and I teach them the culture every Monday for an hour. I teach them the culture we have; we run our company off of a one page plan. Our values are accountability, trust, dialogue, excellence, and drive. Each value has six behaviors to it. We have virtues and strategy, all that stuff, but I teach it every single Monday to every employee. It’s nine o’clock every Monday. I do that.
Then on Thursdays, I have a meeting at eight o’clock called Leading Edge, which is a voluntary meeting, but you couldn’t get promoted in the company if you didn’t attend the meeting, so it is important to attend if you desire that promotion. Leading Edge is where I get to teach my newest philosophies, the things that we teach our clients. I like to use my client, my own company, as our own guinea pig laboratory, so it’s all the Leading Edge ideas we work with.
Then we’ve got Freaking Awesome Friday, which is everyone at the end of the day, four o’clock, meeting. We end the week with everyone going around and validating someone else from a different department about what they did that was beneficial for them. Then they affirm themselves, and they say, “I’m freaking awesome this week because I did blank that caused blank and the effect was blank.” It teaches that cause-and-effect thinking. What’s crazy is that most of the research says that the average employee only works 40% of a 40 hour work week. But to be a Best Place to Work company, based on the stat that we want, everyone that made the cut has at least 92% engaged employees, so there’s a real profit connection to that. But the number one factor, if people desire to have this, is people have to understand how their effort makes a difference. They have to understand the cause and effect of things; that if I do A, then I get B; if I don’t do A, then I get C. They have to understand that, so we’re very big on shining the light on the things that they’re doing well. They repeat them and they get to affirm themselves and what they did well. There are many more things that we do, a lot of training and onboarding and culture stuff, but those are those are a couple.
We’re the fastest growing sales training company in North America. We’ve won Inc. Magazine the last four years in a row for that. What I’m trying to do is ignite the pride, purpose, and respect to professional selling. What’s crazy about it is that 50% of all college graduates have some sort of sales job in their career, 50%. Yet, only 18% of the human population has a favorable response to salespeople, and less than 3% of colleges teach selling. It’s creating this perfect storm. No wonder we don’t like salespeople or we have a bad impression of them, because less than 3% of colleges teach what 50% of college graduates end up doing at least sometime in their life. We really want to fill that void; we want to do it the right way. We’re going to bring back nobility to selling, and make it something that people want to be a part of, like being a doctor or lawyer or something else that they think is great. We want to bring back that respect to it. Even if it never had it, we want to ignite that respect.
That’s just training, right? He’s doing, look, this is one of my belief systems. Myself and Mary Marshall, the president of FPG, we’re one of 2000 master practitioners in the world in what’s called neuro linguistic programming, and one of the presuppositions of NLP that’s important is the science of achievement and persuasion and how to get people to get unstuck faster. One of the belief systems we live by is people are doing the best they can with the resources they have. So that guy is doing the best he can with the resources he has; he’s just been told, “Do whatever it takes to get this person to buy windows,” and he doesn’t know any better or he’s just doing whatever he can. He needs a couple of things. One, he needs to be properly trained, and he needs to have the right mindset, and he needs to figure out what is the pain that you’re trying to move away from, and what is the life improvement you’re wanting to move towards? Do you even have a need? And what do you want? He needs to figure that stuff out, and needs to get in a rapport with you, which is to be on the same page of what your goals and objectives are. Then he needs to present a viable solution, and then remove any uncertainty and ambiguity you have on making the decision that feels best for your family, for your life improvement. There’s a process that needs to happen, and he just sounds like he doesn’t follow that process.
The positive thing about persistent salespeople is that most salespeople are not that goal-oriented. That’s a positive intention that you have going for you, which is great. But what’s funny about it is that the number one most important factor when it comes to selling, more than anything else, more than selling skills, more than compensation, more than territory, more than even the product—a 0.5 correlation is related to initiating contact on a consistent basis. And so the positive intention of that guy is that the person is very relentless, which is great. They’ve got that going for them. What I would do in that case is I would encourage the person’s positive intention and say, “Look, that’s awesome. I love your positive intention. I love the aggression that you have. However, you need to be more downstream with the customer. The customer is out of rapport with you, you haven’t understood what they’re trying to solve, what their goals are. And because of that, you’re coming across as doing something to them and not for them. That’s really the problem.” But what’s funny about that is that’s an easier person to coach. If I had people like that, I could show them how to make a ton of money, because that’s just calming that person down. The worst ever is not calling at all. The worst ever is not pitching at all.
For example, there are four stages in selling. One stage, the first stage, is you’ve gotta engage. Remember the classic Top Gun movie, Maverick engaged. The second stage of selling is you have to understand the customer’s mission to improve their lives. What pain are they getting away from, and what life are they moving towards? The second is you have to present solutions based upon that. The third is you have to resolve the sale and remove the ambiguity; that’s it. The problem is, a 0.5 correlation to a person’s success is just engaging. Think about Maverick, for example. He was the top gun, and he was the best of the best. He technically knew the sales process, he could demonstrate the sales process. But because of fear, because he had a fear of Goose passing away, he was scared to engage in the dog fight. Again, that’s why I’m sharing that the worst salesperson, the one who’s going to struggle the most, is not the one who knows the sales process or who is overly aggressive. The worst one is the one who just doesn’t engage at all, who doesn’t jump into the game.
I don’t know that it takes five touches to make a sale. I mean, that does go along with the research that people aren’t engaging. They’ll have the first conversation, and then they don’t engage with that follow up. They don’t continue on, trying to remove the ambiguity and figure out the client, not from a pest’s perspective, but from a true servant heart’s perspective. So when we say warrior, we’re talking about four levels of a sales professional. The first is a follower, it’s like you go to the mall and you have some sales person that follows you around; it doesn’t add any value. A lot of times some untrained realtors do that. The second level is being a helper. I’m a people person. I’m all about relationships. I’ll hang out with you and be your friend and take you to cocktail parties and someday, because I’m just there, you’ll buy something from me. That’s more of a relationship helper type person. Then the next level is a leader, and a leader will lead you through a systematic decision-making process in order to feel good and certain and clear and resolved about this. That’s a strong salesperson, top 20%. But the final level is a warrior, and a warrior is a protector. They are a protector of the customer’s best interest. They are an advocate for the company they serve, for their product and service. They will not let the customer buy from the competitor if the competitor is giving them a lesser product for less money, they really are a protector of their company’s value, but also the customer’s best interest. The warrior is a protector, they’re an advocate or serving. That’s tough, that’s the highest level to be. So it’s true that it takes five follow-ups, but again, that presupposes that they didn’t do a good job on follow-ups 1, 2, 3, and 4.
That’s the piece we’ve missed a lot, because I’ve heard it was eight. For a lot of people, in a lot of industries, I heard it takes eight follow-ups to make a sale. But again, that presupposes that you’re average. That’d be like saying, well, what’s the average quarterback percentage of completions in the NFL? Is that really the right number you want to look at, or should you look at what it’s like for Tom Brady or Peyton Manning? What’s their completion percent? That’s a different game. I think that’s a mistake we make a lot, because that might be the average, but that doesn’t mean that’s the rule. The rule should be, if that’s the benchmark of what’s out there, how do I make sure that I’m even more effective at understanding the customer’s mission, at presenting solutions and resolving the sale? Because that’s the goal. The goal is not to go to five, that would be very ineffective or inefficient.
We serve a lot of entrepreneurs. That’s definitely a big push. One of our goals, of course, is to help companies scale. We do work with $4 billion companies, and we also work with a lot of mom and pops that are in that exact situation. We all start somewhere, right? I used to be that, and my advice to them is that there’s two problems in every business, there are sales problems, and they’re all the other problems. That’s the two problems. I’m a sales trainer, so of course I’ve said it, but I also have a service book and I’m big on teaching culture and leadership and all the other things. But the advice I would give is that they really need to go as fast as possible in the steps. If they’re the salesperson and the one that does it, then they can’t scale past that. So in my opinion, step one is being the great salesperson, and then hiring some sort of integration support that would help them execute those things. And they can do that; there’s a lot of ways to do that. For example, we use a site called online jobs. It’s a Filipino hiring site. And one of the things that we do to keep costs down is we will hire Filipinos at $2.50 an hour. Now you’re thinking, that’s a lot of money for them. So we do that.
We’re big on an exercise that I do for my company. Once a year, I had every employee list out every single thing they do connected to their primary questions. Like what are their primary questions to work on? For marketing it’s how can I bring a lead in today? Operations is how can I improve the customer experience today? There’s some sort of primary question when they list out all of their job duties, and I asked them too, based upon how much they make, what could they outsource to someone else for less money? That’s an activity that we do. The reason why is that as you scale, as you get bigger, the problem is that there’s this task leakage thing that happens; we start dumping things on people. And then you end up having problems.
For example, the worst thing you can do for salespeople is… a salesperson’s job is to sell their job and to manage their CRM system. Their job is to create the proposal. Their job is a research the customer. Those are all jobs that can easily be done by someone else with much less opportunity cost, which is what we do. Our salespeople, I always tell them very, very clearly, that you only make money for you and me when you open your mouth and you use your mind. Anything you’re doing that’s not you talking on the phone or working with people, working with customers, then we’re both not making money off you. And so I want to know what that is. My sales people love working for us, because everywhere else they go, they spend half their time doing admin stuff that’s just a waste of everyone’s resources.
That’s a big thing I would really work with them on: looking at the CEO, what is the CEO doing. They first need to get integration support, and then they need to outsource that to them. But someone has to always be prospecting, because the problem with any small company is they can’t scale if any person that you sell to today, it took you several months prior to today to get that person to buy from you. In some cases, right? Not all cases, but in some cases, you don’t have your sell cycle and how effective you are. That means if you take two or three months to convince someone to buy, now you’re busy doing all the work with them, and you stop prospecting or networking or initiating contact or engaging, so now you don’t do that for another month or two. Well, that’s going to affect you in three months.
This sounds kind of cliché, but our favorite holiday tradition is every year around Christmas, during that off week, myself and my wife and our kids do vision boards, 3D vision boards for the upcoming year and we have all of our employees do vision boards as well, because they’re basically my kids, right? Some could argue more expensive or less expensive. I’m not really sure. The kids are 9,10, and 11, and they’ve been doing vision boards since they were five or six. They put crazy stuff on their boards. The girls put dresses and puppies and makeup and stuff like that, and then my boy Saunders, he puts some cool car or weapons or stuff you would think a kid would put on there. But it’s important. I want them to have that thing, because the way that your brain works—I talked about this a lot in The Mindset of Sales Warriors—there are 42 kinds of mental toughness strategies, but this is very important. If everyone listens to this, they probably would get a lot out of this. This is the message.
Here’s a cool thing people need to know and that is that 95% of the habits and behaviors that we’re operating on a daily basis come from our subconscious mind. We’re only in our conscious mind 5% of the time. That’s insane if you think about it. The average human comes out of consciousness seven times a minute. So in the 20 something minutes we’ve been talking so far, think about that 20 minutes of time. Seven people are not even paying attention to us right now. To be a monk, a Buddhist monk and master, they call it mastery, a monk has to be in consciousness for 10 minutes straight. The average person falls out of consciousness seven times a minute, so they gotta sit for 10 minutes to be able to do that. Why do I share this with you? Well, the problem is, if your wishes and desires and goals and dreams that you declare in your conscious mind, you’re constantly hitting that wall. As an entrepreneur, you’re hitting the wall and you’re like, “I can’t do this. I want this, but I can’t do it.” And that’s because your subconscious mind is not in the line up with it.
Your subconscious mind is your hard drive. We look at it look at like this: have you ever noticed when you text someone, and then all of a sudden it autocorrects to a different word? For example, say you’re really mad at someone, and you’re like, “Duck off!” You send them that, and they respond back with, “Why did you say duck off?” I’m like, darn it, Apple. Why did you do that? Apple doesn’t want you to use the real word. That’s a perfect example of how your subconscious mind works. Your subconscious is being programmed, and has been programmed by the age of seven. What the research will say today is that you have programmed 70% of your thoughts in your subconscious mind by the age of seven.
The co-founder of the Jesuits would say, “If you give me a son or a daughter for the first seven years of their life, they’ll never leave the church,” and it’s because of this research. The research is pretty nuts, right? We’re shaping all of that stuff. So that’s why, again, we constantly hit these roadblocks and we say, “Well, I want this, but I’m not getting this.” Why is that? Because your subconscious mind’s not allowing you to do that.
The question is, how do we fix that? There’re only two ways you can fix that. Number one is the process of habituation. If you read the books like Power of Habit, or The Atomic Habits, another good one I talked about in my book, The Mindset of a Sales Warrior, is you have to go through the power of habituation to be calm and conscious and educated, but you have to program your conscious mind to then put new data in your subconscious mind to change those autocorrect settings. That’s number one, habituation.
The second thing you have to do is use the concept of hypnosis. One of my certifications is in hypnosis. I do from a business perspective, not from a magic perspective, but the hypnosis happens twice. Today, if you don’t want to go see a hypnotist, it happens when you wake up in the morning and it happens when you go to bed at night. It’s a really cool thing everyone can do to really program their subconscious mind.
The way that your brain works is the highest level of consciousness is beta, and I want everyone to think of beta as beast mode, beast mode or baller mode. That’s when you’re super jacked or super excited. You’re super focused. Right below that is alpha. Alpha is awake, but you’re barely awake. Right below that is theta, and we’ve got to think of theta as transformation. Transformation, trance, and then last is delta and that’s your deep sleep. They’re all great, they all function. But when you wake up in the morning, you’re going from delta to theta to alpha and then eventually to beta. A lot of people won’t get to beta until after lunch sometime, unless you work out and stuff and you get ready for that. Then when you go to bed at night, as you’re lying in bed, you’re in that alpha stage when you’re starting to get tired. Then you go to theta, which is that transformational hypnosis stage, and then you get to deep sleep eventually in the night. Unless you drink alcohol, which messes that stuff up, but here’s the point. Everyone write this down.
If you want to start reprogramming your subconscious mind to make sure it’s congruent with your wishes and desires and dreams you want in your conscious mind, the only way to do that is through this hypnosis. When you go to bed at night, what you would do is you would put on some audio, some earbuds and you could listen to this podcast, like what we’re listening to right now. You could listen to that or you could listen to anything else. And as you’re going to sleep, you just put your phone on a sleep timer; I do mine for 90 minutes, and I just fall asleep to this. And then what’s happening is you’re in that transformational stage, and it’s now going into your hard drive. It’s changing the autocorrect settings to what you want. Then your conscious mind is consonant with your subconscious mind, to allow you to not hit that brick anymore.
I only spent 41 years of my life trying to figure this thing out. Everyone, go to WarriorMindsetBook.com. What we’re doing right now is you can get the book for free. All you have to do is pay shipping and handling. If you don’t want to do that, you can go to Amazon and pay $22 for it and pay shipping and handling there. But on WarriorMindsetBook.com, on top of that, there’s some other offers as well. Like you can get the audiobook, and I have some hypnosis tracks on there. You can go to bed too. I’ve got a workout track that get you pumped up during the day. I have some coaching sessions. I do live, recorded coaching sessions that people can listen to and get some ideas that are relevant to them and how to change their own career, life, and so forth.