23: How did John “Small Mountain” Hill build an international sales/marketing agency coaching service?

e24 John Small Mountain Hill

John “Small Mountain” Hill, author of Selling from Scratch and Founder of Adapted Growth, an international sales/marketing agency coaching service. 

This episode of the First Customers podcast is available on all major podcasting platforms including YouTube.

Mentions

Topics Covered:

  • Networking
  • CRMs
  • LinkedIn Content Marketing
  • One to One Networking
  • Getting warm lead referrals from your LinkedIn network
  • Look for strategic networking opportunities

(Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)

Raw Transcript

paris_vega:
Welcome to the first customers, podcast, Everybody today we have John Small Mountain, the founder and co of Adapted Growth, Adapted Growth is an international Sales and marketing agency coaching service. He’s the author of the book Selling from scratch, and also a host of the Sales Throw Down Podcast John,

john_smallmtn:
Thank you

paris_vega:
welcome

john_smallmtn:
so much

paris_vega:
to

john_smallmtn:
for

paris_vega:
the

john_smallmtn:
having

paris_vega:
show.

john_smallmtn:
me, I really appreciate it.

paris_vega:
So how did you get your very first customers for adapted growth?

john_smallmtn:
So my very first customer came from networking. I was before launching my own business, I had gotten a rare opportunity to work with a business partner who had a lot of local connections. He was a big believer in networking. And that was kind of beaten into me through that process. So whenever I went out on my own to help people with CRMs, I turned to my network, you know, the group of people I’d been connecting with and meeting with regularly for the past three years before that. and was really just on the grind. Hey, who do you know that might need some CRM help, might be looking for a CRM, might be looking to improve their performance at their sales team. Doing that outreach, someone was looking for a little bit of help with lead generation. That’s where we started to talk about the power of LinkedIn, creating content on LinkedIn, and we wrote content for that person and built them out of it, of a sales process that connected to their CRM. That was my very first client.

paris_vega:
Okay, And did you do like Event Net working as well? Or was it just existing relationships? How did you kind of continue

john_smallmtn:
Good

paris_vega:
to grow

john_smallmtn:
question.

paris_vega:
after that?

john_smallmtn:
I like a group to start, but then after that, I like to get very much in the one-to-one. I’m better in the one-to-one situation, so having like the networking coffee or the happy hour beard, where we’re kind of just like learning

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
about each other’s backgrounds. And then we actually took that

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
a step further to being very purposeful around, anytime I got a new connection, I would go look at their LinkedIn and see if they were connected to anyone who I thought might be a prospect. something like, Hey, Paris, I noticed really connected to bill. I’m curious, how well do you know bill, right? To really try to get some referrals,

paris_vega:
M.

john_smallmtn:
right? Cause referrals are a great way to start a conversation with trust, especially when you’re new and you’re still trying to figure out what it is you’re going to do, like who you want to help and who you don’t. Starting from a referral, you don’t have to do as much proving to this person. Right. So, um, I would take that approach. If I met anybody new and it seemed like they were a networker, it seemed like they were in the game to network. I would set up additional meetings with them and we would very purposefully sometimes actually just go through each other’s LinkedIn, right? I’d bring my laptop, they’d bring theirs. We kind of just go through it right there at the coffee shop looking for very targeted referrals and introductions. And we actually have a guide talking about how to do this because come to find out it’s not something that most people think about doing when it comes to like being very active in the search for referrals and new introductions. The most people just tend to take I’m a very proactive person. So I can’t control the number of referrals I get. I can control the number of times I ask for a referral, right? So I was starting to set my KPIs and my cadences around that idea versus, you know, do you know anyone I should talk to? Most people are going to say, well, not right now, but if I think of anyone I’ll let you know, it’s not very helpful when you’re like at stage zero. So I needed to, I need to be a little bit more direct than that.

paris_vega:
Okay. So what kind of uhkpis are like? daily metric goals? would you set for yourself?

john_smallmtn:
So back then my only goal was to make sure that I could have at least five meetings per week. And that was fairly easy to do when you’re just looking at like meeting count. Because once you’ve been around for a little bit, it’s not that hard to get meetings. It’s a little bit harder to get qualified meetings. And in the beginning, when you’re new, you don’t know what qualified looks like for yourself because you haven’t really worked with anyone and done this work. You just have an idea and a way that you think you can help people. So what I started to do was just make sure that would give me the opportunity to test my talking points, test my questions, my pain probes and different things like that. And then it started to shift. I started to find a lane of traction that I was good with, right? And it was with marketing agencies because the way that I sell is very question driven and people like that. They weren’t looking for high pressure use car sales with the jacket and the slick back hair. They wanted someone who was going to be diagnostic in nature. Do you really have a problem? Do you really want our way of doing

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
it? And so that was where I started to really kind of like find a lane that worked for me. These people really were very focused on deal quality, not just deal quantity. And the way that I approached the problem of selling now that I’m a coach is it’s more about project management than it is about trying to be persuasive, right? Because you have to talk to a number of people because there’s always going to be a drop-off. So how do you manage that time? Well, when do you call it quits? there.

paris_vega:
That’s interesting dynamic. You said. They’re looking at sales as more of project management Because it really is a matter of. you’ve only got so much time in the day. So how

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
do you schedule out your activities

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
going towards that goal? That’s

john_smallmtn:
And,

paris_vega:
interesting.

john_smallmtn:
you know, there’s a bunch more of this that I’ve kind of picked up along the way because, you know, starting out, I didn’t want to be a coach. Now, most people seek me out because they’re looking for a coach, right? Or they’re looking for a salesperson and they want someone who’s trained and very, to be diagnostic and to look for solutions and not just be so product-focused. But at the time, it was just the only way that I knew how to do it was just go out and network and, hey, who else do you know? And I still have this to this day when I’m networking of I don’t think you need my help I think you know someone who needs my help, right? So what that does is it puts a little bit of pressure on me to be on around my talking points and making my asks good and clear But no one ever feels like I’m trying to pitch them which is important because when you’re networking They’re not there to get pitched by you They’re there to like network learn more about what you do see if there’s synergy and overlap between them and lots of people get just like a little too well, let me just show you this thing. That’s not why they’re there, you know, and so knowing what what works in a networking conversation and what you can ask for is really a big part of that, that kind of process.

paris_vega:
Okay, Interesting. So can you speak a little more about that goal of net working? Because I think a lot of times you think all right network

john_smallmtn:
Yeah

paris_vega:
to get sales. You know what I mean Like that’s why I’m network, because I want to get sales from the directly from the people that I’m making connections

john_smallmtn:
Yeah.

paris_vega:
with. Whereas you’re saying that on both sides you really need to factor in or people, some people automatically do this. Like who are the sales? That this connection point there’s one person might lead to, or they might be

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
connected to Talk a little bit about

john_smallmtn:
You know,

paris_vega:
that.

john_smallmtn:
the the clearest example I have, I used to be a financial advisor way back in the day, so I could write business I worked at a bank, but I wasn’t

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
one of these field advisors like like the Ed Jones guys, the Raymond James guys who were out there going the networking events, I just worked at a desk. that space because it didn’t need to be competitive. And this one financial advisor said, Hey, I would love to meet with you. I said, Great, I would love to meet with you as well. He’s like, Yeah, I’ve been looking at your site. I really think I need a website, right? Because because at the time I was selling websites and we were a website development shop. And I said, Great.

paris_vega:
M.

john_smallmtn:
And so I get to the meeting and first thing he says is actually, I don’t really know that that I need a website. And I was like, Okay, totally fine. And then about two minutes and starts talking about how he wants to show me his solution, right? Which feels like a sales pitch. He might have just been doing it to like educate me, but I know how this stuff works. He wanted to see if I had any interest. Okay. I’m there to have a meeting with a guy to see if you’re going to be a good fit to join this group, to see if there’s an opportunity for us to exchange business and introductions and referrals and everything. So the expectation is not met right there in that moment, right? So it’s going to be kind of friction, right? You see a car online, you call them, you hastle of the car. Yeah, absolutely, come on in, you come in and that car’s gone. But they have another one that’s similar that they would love to show you.

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
That’s what it feels like in those moments. So when you’re networking, I kind of group people, right? Based upon how I think they kind of fit into my world, right? Because some people are just great networkers. They know everybody in town. Their Rolodex has got thousands of people in it and they love making introductions. Those are people worth knowing. going to have like enough overlap but weren’t a direct competitor. So those were also great people to network with. Right. So when I was in website design, people were always asking us for like IT help. We didn’t do IT help. We didn’t want to touch any of that. So using a little bit

paris_vega:
Right,

john_smallmtn:
of kind of like thinking, if we’re being asked for that and we don’t want to do it, maybe they’re being asked for website design and they don’t want to deal with that. So maybe that’s a lane. Right. So then I started reaching out and networking with, you

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
know, They just want to deal with their stuff, you know, and so there’s synergy

paris_vega:
That’s

john_smallmtn:
there,

paris_vega:
awesome.

john_smallmtn:
right? There’s an opportunity to work together, right? And then the last lane were people that I met over networking who said, oh, you need to talk to Bill. Oh, okay, cool. Who’s Bill? Well, Bill’s a good friend of mine. I know he’s looking for a website. Let me get you guys connected. Awesome. Right? But never in my mind was I taking a networking meeting because I was thinking, you know what? I’m going to sell you on a website.

paris_vega:
I love that that angle of looking for strategic net

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
working opportunities. Uh, yeah, things that compliment your business or your your services, Uh, connected with those businesses you might see as competitors, but they’re not

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
at all. That’s interesting.

john_smallmtn:
There were some IT people who were like, no, we’ll handle the website stuff ourselves because they wanted

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
to. Maybe they want to expand on that area. Totally fine. I’m not here to try to talk you out of that. It sounds like you got that locked down. Perfect. And then I can just move on. The other thing is that I’m an

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
introvert, which a lot of people are kind of blown away by because I’m in sales and I do all this stuff around podcast and content and stuff like that. introverts can’t be salespeople, you just have to think about your energy differently. Like I can’t just have like endless amounts of energy for just going around and hoping something is going to happen, right? So whenever it comes to things like networking

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
or conferences or trade shows or events or something, I’m always going in there with a bit of a goal. So that way once I hit that goal, I can turn it off if I need to. I can just leave, I can be done. I can just focus on great conversations because the thing that always drove me crazy about concept of like, there’s no end to it, you just constantly have to be on the grind for more, more, more, more, more. And I’m not that person out of the box, right? And the people who

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
I coach now aren’t those people out of the box, right? They have a goal they have, they want to grow. All these things are important, but they don’t have this need to be out in front of people, trying to, trying to get them to change their thoughts and feelings about how they feel about something. They’re, they’re those people out there. There’s nothing wrong with them, but that’s just not the way that we approach it. Right. So networking in my opinion becomes a lot easier if you’re an introvert. First of all, if you have a goal, like I’m trying to find two to three people who fit into one of these three buckets that I talked about. And then after that, there’s no more pressure on me. If I find more, that’s great. But having that goal makes me very intentional and I can go in and I can fight through some other things that normally get in the way for introverts or in sales roles.

paris_vega:
Yeah, that’s awesome. So do you have like a specific target audience? Now that you go after for adapted growth, No sales and marketing

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm.

paris_vega:
agencies, but I’m sure there’s a little more of a more targeted

john_smallmtn:
Yeah. Yeah.

paris_vega:
Candidate

john_smallmtn:
During,

paris_vega:
there.

john_smallmtn:
during COVID, a bunch of my friends who I just known over the years of selling in different places have been laid off. And I felt bad for those people because, you know, during the lockdown, you can’t go around as cold knock on doors and walk into an office and an attempt to get a meeting. Like they might not even be at the office, you know. So we started doing some placements and recruiting for people who could generate inbound and wanted salespeople to qualify those calls. And that’s where we started to do placements. people were asking me for people who were trained the way that I was trained, which was kind of the first time anyone had ever Like asked for that, you know before it was always I was the person who could figure out how to do sales Well, but lots of people didn’t see a whole lot of value in having someone like me on their team because I asked a whole lot of questions Like I need to know the why behind things. He can’t just like wind me up with Big promises of money and I’m gonna go out and do a bunch of hard work other things. So it was kind of this, like daylight moment that there was a fit for this.

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
It wasn’t just the way that I found a sell, but people actually wanted people to be highly focused on the quality of the deal as much as they were focused on the quantity of deals in their pipeline and what their close rate was and stuff like that. So it was a really

paris_vega:
Yeah, that seems lie, uld be super important for the prospecting

john_smallmtn:
For

paris_vega:
side

john_smallmtn:
sure,

paris_vega:
of things,

john_smallmtn:
right? And when I

paris_vega:
geting

john_smallmtn:
started,

paris_vega:
more qualified

john_smallmtn:
like,

paris_vega:
leads.

john_smallmtn:
I really just wanted to help out these like high ticket people, right? So, you know, high ticket people, they’re normally running, you know, some sort of like ad-driven funnel to a funnel, and then eventually a sales call. And I wanted to help those people out by saying, hey, we can improve your outcomes by not trying to close everybody who comes through the door, right? So what are the commonalities and the things that they’re facing? What are they struggling with? What’s keeping them up at night to use that very cliche sales question? that we’re looking for those people that are having those problems and only try to close those people because if they’re not dealing with those problems, they’re probably not going to finish a program. They’re not going to come out the other end different or changed. And I thought I thought I was the coolest thing since sliced toast. But a lot of those people weren’t super concerned about improving their outcomes. They just wanted to improve their close rate. So fundamentally, we’re kind of approaching the problem from two different angles. And so that’s when I was like, Lots of people don’t know what I know about selling, right? I worked with a sales coach for eight years. You know, we were in discussions about me buying his business whenever I decided that I didn’t really want to do that. But not everybody wants good selling, right? Not everyone is really just hyper focused on, are you going to get what you need from this thing? Because if not, you should go find someone else because I might not be the right one to talk to you. You know, so that it’s been, it’s been an interesting journey of figuring out that not everybody, but some people in their back office are still telling people, hey, you better find a way to close that deal, you know, and stuff like that. Still, it still happens on sales teams,

paris_vega:
M.

john_smallmtn:
for sure.

paris_vega:
Yeah, so you’re saying you want to make sure it’s a good fit for the company and That means that Okay, Yeah, you’re not going to be aligned with every type of sales organization, depending on the sales philosophy

john_smallmtn:
Exactly.

paris_vega:
and all that. Is there a certain industry that you focus

john_smallmtn:
You know, there

paris_vega:
on?

john_smallmtn:
for a while it was all marketing, marketing and advertising firms. And what’s recently shifted is we’ve started to get some calls from Sass and from other like things that are not part of our lane. So it’s starting to kind of blow up and get very interesting. And I like new problems, right? So once I figure something out, I can get a little bit bored, right? And we’ve got a really great understanding of what it takes to sell well, the marketing and advertising space. You have to build trust before you can really talk about capabilities and how you deliver. is if you’re not aligned there, like let’s pretend you’re marketing and branding, right? Branding is your thing. You’re not doing things like Legion or copywriting

paris_vega:
Hm,

john_smallmtn:
or something like this, but you’re helping people like take their brand to the next level. That is incredibly hard to quantify what it is you’re going to be doing along that path and what is the ROI for that person at the end of it and how like risk reversal and all these other things that are, you know, super helpful in certain realms of selling, you really need that trust, first of all. But before you invest all this time to build this trust, There’s some questions we can be asking to really determine if this is someone who warrants that much time, or is it always going to be a struggle? Right in the the example that I talk about in the book and I talk about with my clients is let’s say that you sell SEO Right search engine optimization to people And you talk to someone who wants to grow But everything they’re saying is more of like a ppc kind of thing, right? We want instant results We want to be able to test rapidly We don’t want to wait four

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
to six months for any kind of results If you end up selling that person seo and they’re a nightmare, it’s your fault because you didn’t ask enough questions. You thought it was going to be okay. You thought the work was going to be enough. You didn’t qualify that opportunity enough. And so then it’s problematic. And then if you’re, when you’re the founder and you do that, it’s okay because it’s your business. But when you start to bring on a salesperson or a sales team and they’re bringing in these deals, it aren’t really great fits. Everyone on your delivery team hates that salesperson. The salesperson doesn’t really understand why this stigma is there. that no one’s on the same page around like,

paris_vega:
Right,

john_smallmtn:
hey, hey, if they want instant results, that’s not us. You need to go send them to someone else. Like that would improve

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
that sales person’s outcomes so significantly just by having that knowledge. But a lot of times you don’t have that knowledge because most people think of sales as like a trait you’re born with versus a skill you can develop. And that’s really where we try to like do things differently. Every personality has got greatness that they bring to the sales table in the sales role. that they bring to a sales role. And until you understand who that person is and how they’re viewing the world and why these things keep happening, you’re not gonna make any improvements, right? Which is why we start really with personality assessment and understanding who you are. How do you think about conflict? How do you think about relationships? How do you think about a sales role? Because once we know that, we can put you on a path of development so that you can be someone who can get the job done, right? And then also bring on other people under you so that they can do the job and you don’t have to anymore. Thank

paris_vega:
I love

john_smallmtn:
you.

paris_vega:
it. Yeah, so you’ve got a tight sales process. It sounds like you know you magine up people based on regardless of what

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm.

paris_vega:
the personality is, and this kind of reminds me of what the seem to lib. Yeah, seem to L talks about when he says like if you’re goin to hire a brain surgeon, Um, you want the most unlikely person to be a brain surgeon like, I think his example is like you want the ugliest brain surgeon possible, because you know that they didn’t skip any

john_smallmtn:
Yeah.

paris_vega:
Hoops like they had to struggle and fight, and the same thing with sales. That’s like you don’t want, necessarily the most outgoing person or whatever teaching you sales, because they’ve got that may be natural carisma and you know, social like

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm

paris_vega:
mentality where they’re just naturally

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
connecting all the time. And So what you were saying about being an introvert and having a sales process that’s effective. You know that that’s something worth listening to, Because that’s like Okay Without the you know, the natural use car salesman

john_smallmtn:
Yep.

paris_vega:
vibe, You’re still able to get results.

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
so now you’ve got my attention

john_smallmtn:
Yeah.

paris_vega:
even more.

john_smallmtn:
My first

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
boss, I’d been in sales for about nine or 10 years. And then my first boss in the B2B segment, I was selling medical devices. And doctors are hard people to have relationships with, right? And my boss at the time, he goes, All right, first day, three, three rules, don’t tell anybody you’re new, which is like my superpower. I love being the new guy, because then people will share openly with you, because they use the same technology. You don’t have an agenda because you’re new. Hang out, what does that mean? I don’t really know. And then let’s go make it happen. What does that mean? But when we look at the personality of this person, and we know this, I know this now and he knows this now because we both have gone through lots of coaching and training, he’s one of the co-hosts on the show with me. But at the time, he is that very gut driven, put me in coach, it’s gonna be better because I’m part of it. And that’s how we got it. and being like, Hey, cool, let’s look at a flowchart of how a conversation could go. Nothing could be more boring to him. But to me, that’s my jam. Like I love flow charting stuff. Like I have a white board right here because on all my calls, we’re probably going to use

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
some white boarding and some flow charting and some ideas. If this then that, because like that’s how I approach the problem. So there was this huge mismatch in how he wanted to be trained, right? Because that’s I wanted to learn. And so that’s why we start from that first place of like, who are you? How do you think about the world? How do you wanna learn? How do you wanna communicate? How do you wanna be

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
seen? Because once we know that, I can put you on a path to show that. So for some of our clients, I’ll do the first cold calls for them to show them that there is a way to do some cold outreach and not get cussed out or not get hung up on, not get treated like a less than first class citizen. see those facts, see those reps and like when I do it, I don’t get cussed out

paris_vega:
Hm,

john_smallmtn:
because I know how to do it the right way and everything is fine. And then they get it. For some people, they’re not going to pay attention to me putting on an exhibition. They just need to go do it a bunch of times, right? But if you don’t know how that person is acquired and how they see the world, you’re going to be as wrong as you are as you are right. And then you be, then it becomes problematic for the organization that you’re working with because if you can’t bring on a salesperson and coach them up to a place to where they’re ramped up and then can continue on without you, You’ve just created like a bad robot, essentially.

paris_vega:
Yeah, and going back to something you said a few minutes ago. Um, It’s so that on accurate, just what we’ve seen. So I’m a partner at an agency and we literally had that exact scenario where somebody was sold So, but they wanted

john_smallmtn:
mhm

paris_vega:
p. P. C results like they wanted immediate results, but they’re expecting that from So and so service was being executed, Uh, delivering and getting you know long term results kind of on Pace for that, but they were like. You know. Why didn’t we have results the first month after signing up for an So contract was like Well That can you know?

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm

paris_vega:
It takes time and throughout the course of investigating that project, realizing, Oh, they just should have probably been like a lead gen

john_smallmtn:
Yep.

paris_vega:
client

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
of some kind, you know, instead of the long term, So

john_smallmtn:
For sure.

paris_vega:
so that’s that? So speaking to that customer service fit, I think is a huge part of sales. that. Um, I’ve definitely lived through and seen the value

john_smallmtn:
Yeah,

paris_vega:
of

john_smallmtn:
I

paris_vega:
that.

john_smallmtn:
got really lucky because my business partner, he knew that I was coming from corporate and in corporate, you always make the offer, you always make the sale. Like, and that didn’t really fit for me because I just felt like I was kind of this glorified touch face. Yes or no, do you want the credit card? Yes or no. Like, I didn’t really have any accountability in the conversation. I’m just supposed to make the offer. And when I started working with my business partner, he was always like, John, it’s not enough that they want a new website, it’s not enough that they have money. Right and that was

paris_vega:
M.

john_smallmtn:
hard for me because you know starting out. I’m like, you know what? We’re good enough It’s gonna be fine watch this and I can tell you the five deals I should not have closed because they were they ended up being nightmares, but they were a nightmare because I Didn’t qualify hard enough right I didn’t really talk about hey, here’s our methodology Here’s how we get things done and sometimes this is where we run into a bit of a scuffle How are we gonna handle? I didn’t do any of that because I didn’t I didn’t have the comfort and I didn’t have the pipeline attitude around, you know, let’s make sure this is a fit. I was still very much letting my like ego run some of my sales process and some of my sales calls, you know. So the part of this is really dialing it back to, do I have the thing that’s going to make them happy? Because if not, send that away, right? Because like, I’m sure in that first meeting with that client that you’re talking about, you know, they get sold, sold SEO

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
in that first meeting. Okay, why isn’t this happening faster? You’re already on your heels and you’re already Like, why didn’t we say no? Why didn’t we turn these people

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
away?

paris_vega:
yeah,

john_smallmtn:
And it starts from, you know, in the beginning, you can’t have a process, right? Because you’re just figuring everything out. But I bet after that interaction with that client, the next person who came along and they started talking about like, well, we want pretty quick results. Hold on a second, we gotta take a time out. Like, what do you mean

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
by that? Because we might not be a good fit for you. Like, that’s the stuff that

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
founders learn over the first like handful of deals. And that knowledge doesn’t get transferred So there’s a lot of times, it’s just a knowledge gap between like the founder and that first salesperson, right? So a lot of what we do is really try to go in there and draw all

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
of that out of the founder. Who is an absolute no? Who do you not want to ever be brought into a conversation with? Well, I don’t want them if they want this and this and this and this and okay, great. Like let’s build

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
that into a qualification matrix so that way your salesperson can be looking for these things so that way they’re not bringing you bad deals, they’re not bringing you bad opportunities, you know? that’s really where it starts, right? Cause most people don’t want to be all things to everybody, but when they start to think about how many people they can help, especially when they’re the founder, they get very excited, right? And the, in the use case expands, it gets really, really big, but you don’t want

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
your salesperson out there, potentially wild catting and trying to figure out if you can help this person or not, right? You’re looking for the lane that you’ve had the most traction in, right? So especially like in marketing, marketing agencies, because the first couple of months, you might be still like earning that customer, right? I’d be getting a whole lot of revenue if you have a bunch of build out those first couple of months, right? So if you have a three month contract or four month contract

paris_vega:
Yeah.

john_smallmtn:
and they’re not renewing Something messed up along the way Qualification can improve right not always but the numbers tell themselves, right? If you can’t keep a client somewhere the expectations are not being met and they need to be redefined, right? And the sales process is where that really happens

paris_vega:
That’s good. Well, I’m already sold on your book now I’m gonna have to

john_smallmtn:
Well,

paris_vega:
check that

john_smallmtn:
I would

paris_vega:
out.

john_smallmtn:
love to send you a copy and

paris_vega:
Dig

john_smallmtn:
because

paris_vega:
in.

john_smallmtn:
you’re putting out content that’s helping others, right? I do this whenever whenever I’m on a podcast.

paris_vega:
That would be amazing.

john_smallmtn:
If you’re listening to this and you like a copy of my book, it’s called Selling From Scratch. Message me. I’m on LinkedIn. I’m on Twitter. I’m on Facebook. I’m on all the social media platforms. Look for John Small Mountain. You’ll find me. Message me and I will send you a copy of my book for absolutely free. First three people to send me a message. Happy to do it. Just send me your name and your address and we’ll put

paris_vega:
Awesome.

john_smallmtn:
one in the mail.

paris_vega:
Heck, yeah, there you go.

john_smallmtn:
Hey,

paris_vega:
Little free.

john_smallmtn:
like

paris_vega:
be out there.

john_smallmtn:
trying to get this book

paris_vega:
Is

john_smallmtn:
in

paris_vega:
it?

john_smallmtn:
as many hands of people.

paris_vega:
Is it physical copy

john_smallmtn:
So

paris_vega:
only?

john_smallmtn:
the, we have an audio book version of it, but it’s an audible exclusive. So if

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
you’re, if you’re a member of audible,

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
well worth the credit. I did it all here in my house. It’s one of the coolest things I think I’ve ever done. Um, but yeah, if you send me a message, I’ll, I’ll send you one in the mail. Hard cover.

paris_vega:
Awesome and it’s selling from a. Yeah, I just

john_smallmtn:
Yep.

paris_vega:
found it on audible. sweet. Okay,

john_smallmtn:
Thank you.

paris_vega:
it’s really cool. All right. Can you? you talked about sales qualification

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm

paris_vega:
matrix? So that’s you know, part of that prospecting process? Um, it sounds like you probably working with more like service based companies and not as many like Product based, Because

john_smallmtn:
Yeah,

paris_vega:
I

john_smallmtn:
that’s

paris_vega:
don’t know. But

john_smallmtn:
that’s a fair point.

paris_vega:
is that true?

john_smallmtn:
I’m a big fan of service right and when you When you go through an experience with a company you have a great service I know I don’t care what it is, right? Like let’s you know And there are some product companies are really learning into leaning into the service side of it, right? So it’s not that you can’t have good service as a product company. I just love really great service and To that end right thinking about marketing marketing and advertising that is a service what is it because

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
that’s a really great way to test new ideas, new features, new pricing levels, asking for referrals and testimonials. It’s about maintaining that relationship. So a lot of what we talk about here doesn’t have as much validity if you’re just selling a product, right? Because if you’re selling a product, here’s the product, you don’t like it, great, here’s your refund, it’s not that big of a deal. But if you’re going

paris_vega:
Right.

john_smallmtn:
to put with one of your clients every two weeks or once a month or whatever your cadence is, you really wanna make sure there’s great alignment between you, that client and the expectations about what the other person is going to be doing or else every one of those things is a nightmare. And then you start avoiding that client. You start pushing that call around and you’re like, you know what, we’ll catch up next week, nothing to report on. And you start to create these gaps in your relationship with the client, right? And I

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
know from just experience, if you don’t have a great relationship in a relationship driven thing, the relationship and then I have another opportunity. Right? My sales coach used to say this line all the time that your best client is someone else’s number one prospect. And we just think about that all the time because like if you don’t want to sit down with these people and like talk about the work and talk about how you’re improving and how and what you’re doing to help them grow. It’s just a matter of time before someone’s going to take that away from you and is probably deserved right.

paris_vega:
That’s good. Yeah, you can’t think. it’s more like a tread mill, like if you’re not moving forward,

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
you’re moving backward. Far as that client relationship Even tough. You’ve got a contract. But yeah, it’s just a matter of time because we’re definitely probably getting hit

john_smallmtn:
Oh,

paris_vega:
up constantly by other

john_smallmtn:
Mike,

paris_vega:
competitors

john_smallmtn:
how much outreach do you get in a day? Because I know the minute I

paris_vega:
Right.

john_smallmtn:
slap founder on my stuff, on LinkedIn, and now I

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
get stuff that doesn’t even matter. I still get outreach about do you want leads for your financial advising service? Well, first of all, I was never an independent, and that was a decade ago. So I’m still getting targeted for some of this stuff. Outreach is there, right?

paris_vega:
Yep,

john_smallmtn:
So if you’re not, build a moat around his best customers and he’ll go out and create things that are not necessarily too close to like the Amazon lane, but it’s building a bigger moat. It’s making it harder for you to win over his customers to your ideas. Same thing, right?

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
If you can show up and you can talk about the wins, you can talk about the losses, you can talk about the things you want to improve, you are doing more than 90% of the consultants How do you even know? Right

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
because it’s great that you might be increasing, you know time spent on page But is that making the phone ring do they only care about making the phone ring? Like are you good at making the phone ring

paris_vega:
Right,

john_smallmtn:
because you know now we’re Really in the depths with them about hey, what does this need to do for it to be worth it? Right. This is how we get away

paris_vega:
Yeah.

john_smallmtn:
from Having to be the cheapest having the chase You know proposals that people didn’t ask for and all these things that people are talking about

paris_vega:
Right. so you want to line up the actual business goal of your your target customer and making sure that you can actually provide trackable results towards that

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
goal.

john_smallmtn:
Right. So for me,

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
a lot of people reach out because they want more leads, right? They’re like, John, I want more leads. Can you help me out? It’s not really what I do. Right. I don’t want to do, I don’t want to build

paris_vega:
Hm,

john_smallmtn:
a big lead gen thing for you. I have partners that do that. Sometimes it’s helpful, but where I focus is more on the discovery, the hiring, the ongoing coaching and training of these salespeople, the systems so that we know that they’re doing the job well and everything. I’m not a lead gen marketer, right?

paris_vega:
Hm,

john_smallmtn:
going to fill your pipeline with qualified opportunities. Hey, you might need to go talk to someone else. Right. On the other side of it, I have people in there like, John, how do I overcome this one objection? Okay. Help me understand why are you dealing with that objection? Right. Because it’s a, it’s a, it’s a manner with which you communicate more than it is about trying to talk people into stuff. Do you want it or not? Right. What do we have to do to get you in the car today? Like you don’t even know what kind Why are you trying to put them into a car? Right?

paris_vega:
Right,

john_smallmtn:
And so discovery in my opinion is where all this lives. Right? When you can really build trust quickly, you can dive into the depths of a conversation super quickly, qualify for fit, and then make the decision, yes, this warrants more of my time and what should we do next? Or, hey, this wasn’t really a great fit. Let’s call this over so that way I can put my focus into finding people who are better fits. Right? So many sales teams, and this is my number one pet peeve. So many sales teams never close a deal as lost. They’re like, well, you know what, maybe later. Well, if you put 150 opportunities into a maybe later column, at some point someone is just gonna think, you

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
know what, I don’t have to continue adding things to this, it’s just a matter of time. And now your process is fueled by hope, not data, not anything else like this.

paris_vega:
M,

john_smallmtn:
You’re just hoping that these people are gonna come back and be like, hey, remember when you sent us that proposal a year and a half ago, we’re ready to move forward now. That’s

paris_vega:
Right.

john_smallmtn:
not helpful to the organization. So

paris_vega:
That’s a rare

john_smallmtn:
it is a rare

paris_vega:
event.

john_smallmtn:
event,

paris_vega:
if

john_smallmtn:
right?

paris_vega:
ever,

john_smallmtn:
So there’s a lot that goes into it, but data tells the story, right? You don’t have to deal with the emotions of the salesperson who feels like they’re getting a rough view. The sales leader who might not have closed the deal in the past five or seven years, but he’s telling everyone else how to close these deals. There’s a lot of gaps here, right? And it can get very emotional inside of an organization, right? once this number hit sales leader commits to the number without really like thinking it through and understanding like how much effort is going to get there and all this stuff just kind of rolls downhill right and so the sales people on the bottom are being hit with this pressure of why aren’t you closing these deals why isn’t your pipeline bigger and everything else like that it’s it’s crazy how it works where you know it’s still very much the walled west

paris_vega:
Can you. Yeah, can you talk a little bit about that initial process of Prospecting, or let’s say, for

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm.

paris_vega:
a marketing agency, put it in a specific situation going after customers, new sales person. What’s that process for them figuring out whether R not. It’s qualified Lead.

john_smallmtn:
My first thing is the salesperson should be talking or hearing customer stories, right? Not what the sales manager thinks is important on the marketing team or anything else like this, but hopefully you’ve got some testimonials. You have some feedback from your best clients and everything, put your salesperson in the middle of

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
that. So that way they’re hearing about like what is actually happening here. And then, okay, here’s why we’re helping these people. Here’s why they’re having these great outcomes. looking for these things, they won’t have a good outcome with us. It’s very interesting and difficult to get certain organizations to be thoughtful about what to say no to, but the marketing adage is you’re trying to be all thanks to everybody, you’re nothing to anybody. And the sales stigma comes from this idea that salespeople are doing anything they can to make that deal close. So if you know who you help and you know how Guess what? You no longer feel like a salesperson. You start to feel like someone who can like help people and you’re not looking to solve all the world’s problems or try to close everybody. You’re looking for people who are dealing with this specific set of issues because you know you can help them. And when I take people through that process of really understanding, who are you helping? Why are they why are they helping so much? Why do they like you so much? What else are they dealing with and everything? I call it drawing the circle smaller, right? Because once you draw that circle small enough circle who fits in this bucket is going to have an amazing outcome and they really need us and we’re very excited. Prospecting avoidance goes out the window because you know who you’re trying to help and you’re not trying to sell people. You’re trying to find people who are dealing with those issues and it’s a very small mindset shift, but it’s super important to salespeople. So if you’re just being fed a lane, hey, go get meetings with these kinds of people, you’re going to have some struggles, right? Unless you’re dealing with a very It’s all about can you get meetings? First of all, that’s the very first thing anyone should be concerned about. I don’t care if you’re a freelancer and you’re just hanging in your shingle. I don’t care if you’re a business organization. You need to be able to get meetings with people so that way you can test your talking points, test your assumptions, test your hypothesis, and see if there’s room to help these people.

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
You’re going to take on some bad deals. It’s just inevitable, right? Someone who has expectations here,

paris_vega:
M,

john_smallmtn:
but their budget is here and you deal with people on this level, like these things

paris_vega:
Right,

john_smallmtn:
just happen, right?

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
know to ask questions about until it kicks you in the teeth. But that’s where the CRM comes into play. That’s where your documentation comes into play. That’s where journaling is something I make all my clients do, right? Not just from what you do today, because

paris_vega:
M.

john_smallmtn:
it’s important to know that, because on the front end of the thing, sales is an activity led role, right? I can’t make people say, yes, I can control the number of people I ask, right? So focus on that. So I’m going to, you know, it might be, I need to reach out to 40 people this month. Most of those people are going bit, but if I do a good job of my targeting, about half of them should be great. What does that mean? Right. And so just like marketing knows that not everyone who has the top of the funnel is going to hit the bottom of the funnel sales. People need to be thinking a little bit more like marketers in that, in that fashion, just in my personal opinion, because if you,

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
if every person is potential and you’re just trying to talk them into it, you’re trying to talk them into it, you’re never going to be able to go back and help marketing understand why that was like a hard deal to close or why that was a deal that shouldn’t have been closed at all. And that’s where the real alignment between sales and marketing takes place. Because the marketing norm informs what actually happens in the sales conversation. Right? Are you being bait and switched? The marketing

paris_vega:
The marketing

john_smallmtn:
norm,

paris_vega:
what?

john_smallmtn:
right? So, uh,

paris_vega:
Oh, okay,

john_smallmtn:
for instance, right? There’s, there’s all this LinkedIn outreach and stuff that’s happening, you know, but if you’re, if your outreach is like, Hey, let’s hop on a call and we’d love to share some strategies with you. If you get on that call and you don’t share any strategies, if you don’t actually like try to help that person out, they’re not going to be super excited with you because on some level the expectation wasn’t met. So it can be as little as that. Come to this webinar, we’re going to teach you how to do these three things. Great. Make sure you teach those three things because otherwise when you’re salespeople follow up with that thing, hey, how was the webinar? Oh man, we hated that thing. That’s a hard turn for a salesperson.

paris_vega:
Yeah, Okay, So you were saying the most important thing is getting

john_smallmtn:
In

paris_vega:
meetings.

john_smallmtn:
the beginning, yeah, right?

paris_vega:
Um, Okay, Could you go deeper into that process of going from either a cold call or prospect or whatever it is to getting that meeting? Can you are there any strategies tactics

john_smallmtn:
You

paris_vega:
there?

john_smallmtn:
know, for me, it all starts with this knowledge, right? Which is why I was so interested to come be on your show. Because in the beginning, I started with networking, right? Because I didn’t really,

paris_vega:
Hm,

john_smallmtn:
like I knew that hiring me to build your CRM would help your sales team. But I wasn’t ready to go out and say, this doesn’t help you within the next 90 days you get your money back or anything. I didn’t want that kind of pressure, right? So I started from

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
a networking perspective because people who trusted me would make trusted introductions and I could and I could be like, hey, this will help you. But this is this is something new that I’m doing. I know it’s helped me and some other people. I don’t exactly know how it’s going to help you yet. Do you want to try? Yeah, we want to try. OK, cool. Right. And you build some agreements and you start

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
from there. But then later on, it’s got to be it has to be more dialed in, right? And the experiences you go through and the lessons

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
you learn allow you to dial that thing in, right? Like if you’re if you’re if you’re running some kind of like high ticket in the business, in the business opportunity space and you’re running on Salesforce and everything, I’m not a fit for you because I just by default, I don’t really like working in Salesforce. I also haven’t had much success working with the high ticket realm as far as getting them to really focus on long term outcomes and not close rate. So I can hear those things and I can be like,

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
Hey, I don’t think I’m the right fit for you. Right. And that’s just much more about making sure that if I accept their money, I feel good about cost and hustle till I die and all this other stuff right now you start there because you because you might have to you know but eventually you should be working towards a lane of consistency.

paris_vega:
That makes sense. Okay, l. this

john_smallmtn:
Thank

paris_vega:
is all

john_smallmtn:
you.

paris_vega:
good stuff, man, uh, yeah, I mean from first and experience, I’ve seen a lot of of what you’re talking about, and it’s crazy to see that. I guess lots of other agencies go through the similar, either life cycles or patterns, because it’s all just

john_smallmtn:
Yep.

paris_vega:
human behavior. You know, a scale across multiple different groups of people trying to do the same kind of thing. So yeah, there’s There’s obviously going to be patterns that

john_smallmtn:
Absolutely.

paris_vega:
show up. Um, when you work with so many companies, What would you say? It’s like the biggest problem with. since you’re working with multiple sales teams and agencies, What would you say? The biggest problem is that you help your customers solve

john_smallmtn:
You know, so you had a cup in view before we started talking. There it is right there, right? The Jaco Willing Cup that they get after it.

paris_vega:
Boom.

john_smallmtn:
And that book was a huge game changer for me, right? I’m prior service. I don’t like, I’m not a,

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
like

paris_vega:
awesome,

john_smallmtn:
I don’t talk about it a lot. I obviously don’t look like I’ve ever been in the military in any way, shape, or form, but I was a long time ago. And Jaco has this one part in his book or a podcast or somewhere and he goes, he’s talking to a leader. Man, I just don’t understand why these people like aren’t being honest with me. And he’s like, oh, did you forget that you’re the leader? Right.

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
And just what a moment, right? Because there’s a direct connection to that to sales as well. Did you forget that you’re a salesperson and people might lie to you? Like, do you know how easy it is to lie to a salesperson? Super easy, right? And not everyone is lying to you

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
because they wanna waste your time or anything. Some people are lying because they don’t feel comfortable telling you the truth because they’re dealing with all the other outcomes that they’ve had. Same thing happens in like water cooler talk with sales teams. He didn’t want to be known as the guy who couldn’t close the deal. Right? So the main organization ran in Salesforce, but he didn’t want to put his deals in the Salesforce until they became real. Right? And real meant like 95% closed because he didn’t want to admit that he, that like some deals don’t close. So he gets an opportunity.

paris_vega:
So his clothes rate

john_smallmtn:
Exactly

paris_vega:
looked great,

john_smallmtn:
right. Exactly

paris_vega:
but

john_smallmtn:
right. You know, his pipeline

paris_vega:
yeah,

john_smallmtn:
looked nice and tight and narrow because he didn’t want to show the work. Right? And he got this really, and I was pushing him on this. Man, you don’t have to deal with this way, bro. Like everyone knows that most sales deals don’t close, right? Like you’re making it harder on yourself for what good reason. We didn’t have one. And so he got an opportunity from a very, it was a huge opportunity, right? So he puts it in a sales force, right? He follows my advice. Three minutes later, he gets an email from a guy like four levels above him. Is this real? How are you gonna get people to be okay with like the fact that some deals don’t close? With that kind of default check-in that kind of default micromanaging right are you passing someone in the halls? Hey, how’s that? How’s that ABC deal going? If your salesperson is struggling with that deal, they’re not gonna tell you that right there in the hallway Right, you’re gonna get oh things are good things are good. Okay, man. Cool You know, we need you to show up strong in this quarter, you know in all this and like a real conversation isn’t really happening So the two biggest gaps that I see are everyone is still like leaning into hope because they’re not being intentional with like spending time with their reps individually. Hey, what is your pipeline look like? Where are you stuck? Why? Like, hey, we lost this deal. Why do you think that happened? Is it because of our normal things? Do you think there’s something you can improve on really leaning into that stuff? thing is a focus on fundamentals, right? I’m a martial artist and a lot of how I think about coaching comes from two main areas, right? Well, probably three, right? The military, my time as a martial artist and my time as a professional poker player, right? Because data as a poker player is the thing that keeps you in the game, right? Not how you feel about the game, not how you think about the person who called and, you know, they’re the idiots and everything else. You can only run that game until you’re out of money. And then you have to like think about a different way of like, solving for your rent and everything. And so… fundamentals decay, right? So if you’re not spending time with your reps and saying, okay, cool, let’s talk about how we’re going to start a call. Let’s talk about the agreements we need with this person to make sure that this is worth the time, right? And then also, let’s talk about that it’s okay to say no, right? Because for some people, if you don’t come out and say, Hey, Paris, at the end of this, you might realize this is not a fit and that’s okay. If you get there, do you mind telling me, right? I just want to be told no, salespeople who are just going to put on the full court press and try to pressure them into something. So if I don’t do a good job of stepping out

paris_vega:
Interesting.

john_smallmtn:
and showing them that I’m different, I’m going to get the same responses that they’re giving everybody else. What happens is we lose these ideas if you’re not constantly reinforcing the fundamentals, asking good questions, probing for depth. How do you know if something is a real problem or if it’s a priority? Timelines. All these things get lost in the wind, in the shuffle, And that’s why we spend so much time talking about the fundamentals of discovery, right? Your personal awareness, sales EQ, right? Is a great book by Jeb Blunt. We talk about you have to be able to read the writing on the wall, right? I’m a very rigid, introverted kind of developer type, right? And so like in my world, everything exists on a timeline and everything has a black, which is wrong and a white, which is right. And man, the world doesn’t function that way, right? So

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
what does that mean for me as a salesperson? job of it. So it comes back down to the fundamentals, right? And lots of sales teams don’t put any effort into fundamentals, right? They’re just expecting you to walk in the door and be a dazzling conversationalist who can get meetings on your own. That is hard, man. It’s hard to reach out and get meetings. It’s the reason

paris_vega:
For

john_smallmtn:
why

paris_vega:
sure,

john_smallmtn:
most people fail at selling and prospecting and outreach. It’s hard, right? So

paris_vega:
Right.

john_smallmtn:
that focus on fundamentals from practical application we have a product, it’s called sales practice lab. And it is my version of the martial arts school for salespeople. So it runs twice a week, we meet over

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
zoom,

paris_vega:
cool.

john_smallmtn:
and we just practice different things, right? So last week was all about, you know, talking about what I call the path to yes, right, the path to yes, and how we think about it is you define the need, you talked about some money. So they do have money to actually put towards fixing this problem. And the rest Who else is involved? Who else are you talking to? When do you plan to make a decision? What’s important to you and the partner that you pick? Because just because we know that they have a problem and we know that they have money, you’re not done yet. There’s still additional discovery that we can do. And if you skip that part, you’re going to end up with a bunch of deals to where you don’t really know what that next step is. Excuse me, who the decision makers are, things like that. You can create massive gaps later on in your process. So everyone hops into Zoom. I come up with a prompt. We go around and get some clarity from everyone. And then I put people in very small breakout rooms and we just drill and practice and practice and practice. So that way, when you’re in front of your prospects, you’re comfortable. Right. Another thing from Jocko, you don’t rise to the

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
occasion you fall to your level of training. Right. So if you’ve not been in a sales coaching class in the past two years, how are you going to respond in that environment? Right. You should be prepared. Right. Especially if you’re doing any kind of like paid, paid outreach. Right. If you’re doing like, like ads, right. If you’re doing ads to qualify or call some of these people are paying $150 per, per appointment. You need to like hit that with some competence and confidence and make sure that it’s worth the time or put it down so that way you don’t waste time with an unqualified person. How do you do that? Well, fundamentals.

paris_vega:
And what’s the name of that course

john_smallmtn:
It’s called

paris_vega:
you

john_smallmtn:
Sales

paris_vega:
have

john_smallmtn:
Practice

paris_vega:
or the

john_smallmtn:
Lab.

paris_vega:
group?

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm.

paris_vega:
Just all right, We can have links all your stuff

john_smallmtn:
That would

paris_vega:
in the

john_smallmtn:
be

paris_vega:
show

john_smallmtn:
great.

paris_vega:
notes.

john_smallmtn:
I mean, this is the thing that I was looking for whenever I was struggling, right? And that first B2B sales role that

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
I was talking about, I wanted coaching, right? But my boss was so busy, I didn’t feel comfortable going and asking him, hey, can you help me out? And also, I didn’t really know that I was going to go get information from him that was going to help me, right? Because I talked about the differences in our personality and everything. And he’s very much, well, just go figure it out. Man. Like I need some rules. I need some guidance. I need I need some clarity from this thing because I don’t want to

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
I don’t want to do it wrong right, so Yeah

paris_vega:
And it seems like you can save a lot of time by, you know, learning from these common patterns and these common problems that always

john_smallmtn:
Mm-hmm

paris_vega:
come up on sales calls. And yes, you could probably learn the same thing by just picking up the phone and called calling a undred times a day, or

john_smallmtn:
Yeah.

paris_vega:
whatever it is. Eventually you’ll learn all these same lessons, but yet definitely make sense for efficiency sake. to go ahead and learn from the experience of others and get some training and start out ahead

john_smallmtn:
And

paris_vega:
of

john_smallmtn:
it’s

paris_vega:
the

john_smallmtn:
crazy

paris_vega:
game.

john_smallmtn:
to me, right? Because when you look at any other role in an organization, they don’t do it the way they do sales. No one is like, okay, great, you like a keyboard, let’s hire you as a developer. You’re gonna figure it

paris_vega:
Uh,

john_smallmtn:
out, just

paris_vega:
uh,

john_smallmtn:
write a bunch of code and let’s see what sticks. No one does it that way, right? You’re gonna have a basic level of understanding.

paris_vega:
Right,

john_smallmtn:
They’re gonna put you through some very, hopefully targeted and tangible developments so that way you can be an asset to the organization. And then finally, you can go on your own and that kind of expands up. And then sales people are like, well, go make it happen, captain. Like go get some meetings, let’s talk about your pipeline in like 90 days. Like no organization

paris_vega:
Yeah,

john_smallmtn:
is better served by that as opposed to, well, let’s send our people to some fundamentals coaching. Like let’s make sure that they know to probe for the appropriate depth, ask questions to make sure that we’re on the same page and everything that goes along with that.

paris_vega:
John. this has been great. Um, that’s about a full episode that we just did

john_smallmtn:
Awesome.

paris_vega:
there. I think we could. We could go deep and talk for hours about this stuff. There’s there’s a lot of a lot of good stuff here already, so you’ve definitely convinced me to dig deeper into your into your work and go through that book selling from scratch, And then you said that the sales throw down podcastis out there, So you, you’ve put some value

john_smallmtn:
Yes

paris_vega:
out there on that podcast that people can check out.

john_smallmtn:
Yeah, sales throw down is on YouTube. So if you want to watch the video, we started out

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
in a studio and it was it was awesome And then COVID happened. So we started doing it from our homes over zoom and everything It’s about 90 something episodes We talk about everything from quotas to leadership to like hiring and ramp up timelines and everything in between and we have

paris_vega:
Okay,

john_smallmtn:
We use disk as our personality Measurement tool, right and it breaks people into four different groups D. I S and C and we have someone from the DC about eyes, the SC talking about us, and me, I’m talking about the C personality. So it’s not just one person trying to cover the entire spectrum of human behavior. We have people who are sitting in these spots and they can talk with clarity about, well, here’s why I hate a quota, right? And then they can talk about it and they can talk about the challenges that they have in outreach and prospecting and qualifying and closing and stuff. It’s one of my favorite things that we’ve done see it in each one of the episodes, right? You see me trying to make everything about science and facts and figures and data, and you have, you know, the D type who just wants to win, you know, and it shows up in little bitty minuscule ways of the conversations once you know to look for. It’s one of the one of the coolest things that we’ve built personally, in my opinion.

paris_vega:
All right, let’s close the episode. But with you like talking directly to your target audience, how would you kind of give

john_smallmtn:
Yeah.

paris_vega:
that initial pitch as though there’s a group of them

john_smallmtn:
So

paris_vega:
listening right

john_smallmtn:
if

paris_vega:
now?

john_smallmtn:
you’re a founder and you have built something or you think you might want to build something and in some version of that you want to be not in charge of managing the sales pipeline, but you still know that you want someone to do that with a high level of accountability and coachability. I would love to talk to you about it. We can go through the process of really figuring out you have this knowledge in your head if you’re the founder because you’ve been having these conversations. coaching someone else who could come in and take these calls for you. So whether you’ve hired a salesperson or whether you’ve never been successful or whether it’s something you’re dreaming about doing, but you’re not really sure what those first steps look like. I would love to have a conversation with you, see where you are, talk about some of the challenges that I have seen and experienced of replacing dozens and dozens of salespeople and working with dozens of entrepreneurs and just make sure that you’re on the right path towards where you want to go.

paris_vega:
Awesome, that’s John Small mountain. Everybody, look him up. Check out his work and we’ll

john_smallmtn:
Thank

paris_vega:
see

john_smallmtn:
you

paris_vega:
you

john_smallmtn:
so

paris_vega:
next

john_smallmtn:
much.

paris_vega:
time.


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