Naphtali Hoff, the author of Becoming the New Boss: The New Leader’s Guide to Sustained Success, joins me on this episode.
- How do we make our sales teams smarter and better? There’s a difference between educating and training. Managers seem to be in the training camp, while leaders are more visionary and think about education reps.
- Naphtali wrote on this and cited Warren Bennis on the distinctions between leadership and management. The manager administers and the leader innovates. Leaders are critical in moving organizations forward.
- Administering ensures that existing processes get done. Innovating fundamentally looks differently at what you have and provides a vision of creating something new that goes in the same general direction but is improved.
- Training is about understanding a process and doing it. Education is about giving foundational pieces and parameters and skills to develop to accomplish the goal with some leeway and potential for a fresh perspective.
- When scaling, don’t look at all the things you will do for all the customers. Think about what you will do for a specific customer. How do I make this work for this person?
- If leaders get employee engagement, employees give so much more. Andy brings it back to investing in people through education, even to set aside time for a corporate book club. Engagement is really high. There is time for it.
- Naphtali educates institutions for professional development. He sees companies focus more and more on soft skills such as connecting. This especially appeals to Millennials. Facilitate the growth of everyone.
- Nothing happens until you have a working relationship with a buyer. Pick up the phone, meet people and engage with them. Messaging is not good enough. Buyers want to deal with reps they trust. Use Zoom if you can’t meet.
- Anthony Bourdain once said what he does is not complicated. He shows up and he shows an interest in another person. If you do that, they’ll open up and interesting things happen.
- Curiosity about the other person connects you and provides a language to solve issues. Naphtali cites Dale Carnegie on being a great conversationalist. Andy cites Mark Roberge on asking as many questions as you can.
- We are selling to people, not to personas. Learn about them as a person, to know what is important from them. Andy tells how he sold to a customer who wouldn’t buy until Andy asked him about his photos of the children.
- Andy asks salespeople if they’ve read a book on sales in the last month. Naphtali uses Audible and on his commutes. Thomas Huxley once said to learn something about everything and everything about something.