How to Engage the Interest of Prospects, with Jeff Schmidt [Episode 425]

Jeff Schmidt, Senior Vice President of Global Sales and Services at ClearSlide. In this episode, we elaborate on the ability of sales reps to align their selling processes to the buyer’s own purchase process.

Key Takeaways

  • Jeff got started in sales selling contingency placements as a search consultant. He moved into a full-time sales job for VMX, selling call processing software (early voicemail). He sold by cold calling on the street.
  • Jeff tells of his SaaS sales journey, leading to his move to ClearSlide to sell solutions for sellers and marketers. Jeff is excited to be selling a product he uses everyday!
  • The biggest internal challenge facing sales reps, is getting the sales stack to work effectively. The biggest external challenge, is aligning buying and selling processes effectively; knowing where the customer is, and what they need next.
  • Sales reps already know how to send out emails, but as far as calling goes, they need to know better what their audience wants to talk about, to have it ready to discuss, and to conduct the interaction to move the sales process forward.
  • Managers need to coach reps on their engagement skills, and also on their reporting compliance.
  • ClearSlide, a sales engagement platform, has three pillars: Content (for interaction), Communications (reporting the interaction), and Insights (helping sellers prepare for the next conversation).
  • The last mile of the buying journey is critical. Jeff tells how to inform the prospect, and align with their progress.
  • Sales insight into stakeholders is crucial, whether in small companies or large.
  • Jeff asks, how do you solve ‘hopecasting?’ There is a reticence to adapt processes to fit reality. Leadership must be accountable for insights; marketing must provide and curate content; sellers must be accountable for executing sales.
  • “We can live and work with yeses and noes, but maybes are killers.” — Jeff Schmidt. Engagement data provides important qualitative insights.
  • Proceduralize and understand what you want from each tool in the sales stack. Integration involves not only the technical flow of data, but insights informing the conversation.
  • Jeff explains how to qualify prospects. Qualify properly, or disqualify properly. These directed events provide additional insight to work on productive leads. Percentage of conversion of pipeline is an important metric.

The Sales Enablement Podcast with Andy Paul was formerly Accelerate! with Andy Paul.

Episode Transcript

Andy Paul  0:56  

Hello, and welcome to the Sales Enablement Podcast. I’m excited to be joined today by my guest, Jeff Schmidt. He’s the senior vice president of global sales and services at Clear Slide. Jeff Schmidt, welcome.

 

Jeff Schmidt  1:31  

Good morning. Thank you for having me. I hope you’re well.

 

Andy Paul  1:35  

We’re pleased to have you here. So maybe take a minute, introduce yourself. Give us all your background, maybe how you got your start in sales.

 

Jeff Schmidt  1:41  

Yeah, fantastic. Well, my name again, Jeff Schmidt. I’m the Clear Slide Head of Sales and Services for the last two years and excited to be a part of Clear Slide but my entree into sales was actually through a search consultant selling contingency placements back in a long, long time. 

 

Andy Paul  2:02  

A lot of people get started that way.

 

Jeff Schmidt  2:03  

Yeah, exactly. But it served me very well, to help me better understand the industries that I was interested in. And I actually parlayed the opportunity into my first sales job for a company called BMX, which at the time was selling call processing software voice store and forward, which ultimately became known as voicemail. And this was back back in the days when we actually cold called out on the streets and knocked on doors. So my first included collecting business cards once a week.

 

Andy Paul  2:35  

Oh, yeah. Gosh, I, I’ve told the story. people in the audience, probably tired of hearing about it. But my first job was in the East Bay Area, and based in Oakland, California, and yeah, we’d drive to the office park selling computers, drive to the office park in Hayward or Union City and park the car and spend the day making cold calls.

 

Jeff Schmidt  2:53  

Yeah, those are the good old days. Now we’ve got technology to do that for us. 

 

Andy Paul  3:02  

You’re talking about BMX? And sir, interesting transition over time. So how did you sort of end up with a clear slide?

 

Jeff Schmidt  3:10  

Yeah, so I spent a lot of years selling capital equipment, BMX boxes, software hardware. And I made a transition in the early part of the 2000s into a company at the time WebEx and got my first taste of working in SAAS, and very exciting and started to learn about collaboration and how to work better together and how virtual communication and interaction could be facilitated. And then from there, I went into a company called core metrics, which was a SaaS based online retail analytics company that we scaled up from, from very small to to, to scale and sold up to IBM. And from there, I sort of had the passion to stay in and around SAAS based on the right solutions and line of business focus. And as I was looking for my next great opportunity I came across this idea where there was this company out there that was solving problems specifically for sellers and marketers. And I thought to myself whom it was it’s a missing piece and I saw a gap in what the number of the existing and obvious CRM kind of companies at the time were doing and that’s what drew me to clear slide and so two years later we’re psyched and still having a lot of fun

 

Andy Paul  4:24  

I think what a great natural fit for somebody that’s been in sales for a long time and seen their career growth actually, you know, what product theory could you possibly know anything more about than sales?

 

Jeff Schmidt  4:35  

Yeah, it’s exciting. And then we like to talk with our sellers about, how often do you get to sell something that you actually use every day? Exactly, and solves problems for each of our individuals and we try to become a best practice obviously in talking to our customers and sharing how we’re using our own eating our own dog food.

 

Andy Paul  4:52  

Well we forget to declare slightest is so in your mind, you know, what are the biggest or maybe the single biggest sales challenges for sales reps today?

 

Jeff Schmidt  5:02  

Well, there are a number of them. And I’ve tried to think about how to prioritize that. I think within, you know, there are a number of tools that sellers use today. And two, in most cases little effect because they’re spread across a variety of different touchpoints. But that’s the challenge, sort of an internal challenge, the external challenge that I think people are really trying to,the buy and sell process and align that more effectively. And we see more often than we care to admit our sellers are where they think they are in the stage in the sales process, and the buyer is nowhere near aligned either. In a lot of cases early on the buyer is much further ahead than our seller, or in some cases, our sellers then speed to get caught up and blow right past where they the buyer is and pricing is on the table and they’re talking about trying to close and transaction that’s not that’s not anywhere near ready to do so. So I think ensuring that you understand where the customer is in their process and cycle and what they need to facilitate the rest of their decisions. So things like content and engagement and analytics all sort of play into that naturally.

 

Andy Paul  6:12  

Why, sir, put what you talk about in and maybe I use the term a little bit differently, I think when you guys use in terms of your product, but yeah, the problem I see is, is one I think that speaks to what you’re talking about in terms of being misaligned to the buyer and seller is,why I call it engagement, but it’s really engagement at the human level with the prospect. You know, it seems to be still really hard, especially for some of the younger generation of sellers, is how do we build that rapport in that relationship where they open up to me and they give me this information I need? And I felt comfortable asking for the information. I need to understand their requirements, their needs, their timing and so on.

 

Jeff Schmidt  6:52  

Yeah, no, that’s an excellent point. That was sort of the counter to what I mentioned about all the different technology that’s now in place, and I think there has been a it’s almost a cultural schism that’s occurred where you think about historically you had field sellers and then the evolution of inside sellers and, and to me, and in particular my time at WebEx I learned, you know, productive selling is really what you want to be engaged in, right and productive selling means that you want to be able to get to your audiences effectively and timely as possible. And more often than not, that doesn’t require that face to face interaction or in person interaction, but there is still a very strong right need for that personal interaction. And we’ve deployed so much technology in front of our modern sort of first tier sellers who are coming up in their career, that we frankly haven’t enabled them in the right way to be able to learn that nuance about that human interaction building that rapport and that relationship.

 

Andy Paul  7:54  

What do you think is the answer, how do we get better at doing that? Because this is, to me,  something that’s really consistent. Across everybody I speak with and all the companies I work with and talk to is, is, yeah, we still have this I call you appreciate the term  is, you know, back from the telecom days, we talked about the last mile, right. I mean, we could get our bulk data and transmissions to the central office of the cable head end, but then getting it to the President, you know, the Point of Presence or the residence was very expensive. So, we had a last mile problem, we have the last mile problem in sales now, right? I mean, we’re really good at getting to that point where then somebody has to talk to a person, whether in person or virtually or remotely, that’s the only place.

 

Jeff Schmidt  8:36  

That’s the failure point. Yeah, and it continues to be a challenge because getting that confidence is somebody who’s accustomed to sending out hundreds or thousands of emails a day. And then you know, we work very hard with our sellers here and I do a lot of interactive role playing to say, you know what I’d rather you placed five really well prepared calls themselves so that, in the unfortunate likelihood, if someone if I answer the phone, that you’re prepared to have a dialogue, and it’s difficult to strike that dialogue up. So doing that research and having that understanding, and it’s sort of proper planning and preparation, you know, before you do that, and it’s a fine balance, because you cast that wide net, to get as many prospects or interactions going as possible. But then when you’ve got a quality interaction ready, you can cued up, how are you prepared to ensure that your audience knows what they want to talk about? B, you have that material at your fingertips and see if you can conduct the interaction in a way that facilitates your agenda, which is typically moving your sales process forward. 

 

Andy Paul  9:47  

And you really hit the key point there. So striking that balance, right? Because oftentimes, at least so surely, in the SAAS world is there seems to be this, you know, sort of rigid adherence to a set of metrics that have to do With your how many calls you’re gonna make and contacts and so on where quality or quantity really does seem to prevail over quantity or quality Excuse me. And you said you will have to be able to strike that balance. So how do managers give themselves the freedom to do that?

 

Jeff Schmidt  10:17  

Yeah, I you know and managers have to strike that balance as well with their employees to not over rely on technology and develop the skills of how do they interact and coach a seller to feel it’s okay you know, you have that added that concern that legacy sort of adoption worry about I don’t want to put this deal at the stage that it’s in that I know it’s in in Salesforce, for example, because I’m going to get questions about it. How do you develop your managers is also the problem equation to be ready to coach to say, oh, you’re in discovery mode. It’s a financial services customer. The use cases considered are: Are we talking about how we can help them facilitate that dialogue that the seller feels good about? That’s going to help them as opposed to? What’s your number? Okay, coach, I got it. I’m gonna make my number and those sort of really binary interactions that aren’t value add for either party.

 

Andy Paul  11:15  

Exactly. Well, let’s talk about a clear slide a little bit, and then we’ll give them some more detail about the sales general. So for people to understand, once you explain our iron, we’re a clear slide bunker, explain what it does. And you call it a sales engagement platform.

 

Jeff Schmidt  11:28  

Yeah, that’s correct. A sales engagement platform and really has three primary pillars to it, content, communications and insights. And what those words mean for us is that the content is really being able to ensure that we help sellers, marketers understand the efficacy of the content that they create and distribute. And so the common use case is, I’m a seller. I want to get my prospect prepared for a discovery call. I send them a deck and I want to know how they’ve engaged with the deck. Did they set it? Did they open it? And a lot of companies give you that insight? Or be what where did they spend time in the deck itself? And then did they share the deck with anybody else? And what did those others do with that deck? And what that does is help inform the end seller should be prepared to help better prepare them for the next conversation that they’re going to have. The second component that the benefit that it brings internally is, it eliminates that sort of, he said, she said, dynamic that can take place between sales and marketing teams to better drive alignment. So we can say, data tells us that this content is used effectively in the following ways. And by the way, your 10 slide deck, we really only use the customers are really only engaging with three of the 10 slides, right. And so it fuels the content. Generally it helps us better prepare, send, distribute and produce content that over time We understand how well it’s being engaged with. Okay? The second component is communications and so facilitating that striking that balance of connecting virtually and engaging with your prospect or your client and doing that, in a way that’s easy, easy to them. In the simplest terms, you know, we’ve our phrase, hop on my link, you type, you type in the URL, and we’re in our meeting, and you’ve got the full rich content available, the audio experience, you have those channels with you connected to have, you know, a meaningful and, and, and good interaction. I’ve spent too much time in companies where we’re trying to get meetings started and it takes over an hour. We’ve allocated 15 minutes of it downloading software to try to get a meeting started. And you know, it’s just not productive. So, ease of access into the meeting is a part of that but also the ability for our sellers once they distribute that content, understand again, Where the customer is in their journey by virtue of what they’re doing and how they’re engaging with the content that we’ve provided them, so I’m better prepared. So when I’m communicating with the customer, I’ve understood, they spent most of their time on the architecture slide of our solution, we better be ready to have a technical discussion. So when we get on that call, we can communicate effectively with them and be prepared to, you know, go into whatever level of detail they want to go into.

 

Andy Paul  14:27  

So, you know, a place to use as you sort of alluded to going to meetings or something else, you’ve got integrated with your system, this virtual meeting room.

 

Jeff Schmidt  14:51  

Yeah, exactly. It’s an interaction, a capability to conduct the meeting. And so that’s another component and then the third element insights, you know, can kind of go in a number of different directions, primary use cases for a seller to be able to understand what’s going on with the content that they’ve sent to their prospects, right? Are they opening it? Are they engaging, how much time and where, and then what our platform will allow for is that engagement data will then feed back into your CRM system at the opportunity level. So it will update by stage where you’re at and the engagement that you’re seeing right with that prospect. So what that can do then is it would help me in for example, if I’m talking with one of my sellers, or leaders, or whatever the case may be, we can talk about, well, XYZ company Verizon is looking at buying from us. And they’ve been incredibly engaged with us over the last 30 days. And in fact, we can see escalation of engagement meaning higher level people are now starting to become part of the process, why we should feel good about this opportunity, or the antithesis of that is we’ve got a client who we’re forecasting the deal to close. They’ve had no engagement over the last 60 days. No one’s looked at the proposal. Yeah. What does what gives us confidence that it’s gonna, it’s tracking to close in the timeline that we think it is. So it can help inform those conversations so that the coaching discussions are more timely and effective. When a manager is talking with a seller. It also helps. What we’ve done here is we took each year we look at the average engagement from our club, qualifying pops up. And we use that as an internal benchmark to say, you know, you don’t have to use our product this much. But we know at this level, the top sellers use our product in this way and set that standard for engagement. And it’s proven time and time again that the data supports the fact that the people who engage with our product continue to sell and be productive. So it helps with onboarding, it helps with training, and setting best practices. And so those are some of the insights in addition to the ones I mentioned around the content that helped fuel what we do.

 

Andy Paul  17:11  

Yeah, well, I think one thing that’s interesting when you for people listening again to to understand is that so when you’re getting the sales intelligence that, you know, as you said, maybe an escalation in terms of level of people that are looking at the content, they’re looking at specific pages, whether it’s implementation, or proposal, pricing, finance, whatever, is that, you know, we’re in an environment where, you know, people aren’t talking as much now more of it’s done through email and collaboration. And so, to me, this is a vital piece of information. Gosh, I wish I’d had it when I was working large complex deals back years and years ago, because, you know, then we started to rely on somebody saying, yeah, I talked to this person, you know, we discussed this or I talked to this person. Here, you actually have a trail or you can watch where, where it’s flowing and who’s actually looking at it. And this is the more likely the way that your customer is actually communicating about the content you’ve sent to them.

 

Jeff Schmidt  18:01  

Yeah, and it definitely helps when you do get it because statistics will say, buyers can be as much as 67, or two thirds of the way through their evaluation process before they even engage with a company or seller. And that last mile, as we talked about, is uber critical and making sure you’re super precise with what you’re helping to inform that prospect with over that last peer percent of the evaluation period is critical. And so these insights help inform that. And we see you know, tremendous uptake in terms of results and productivity as a result.

 

Andy Paul  18:37  

And if you’re selling in a large complex environment, where, you know, some of the factors I talked about in the challenger sale, more the challenger customer really come into effect, you know, 5.4 decision makers now, I think they validated that based on the latest research, the 6.8 or seven decision makers are stakeholders in every decision. This is a great tool to give visibility to say, yeah, who is engaging with our content? Who are the stakeholders, right? Who are the ones that are really gonna be involved in making this choice?

 

Jeff Schmidt  19:03  

Yeah, exactly, exactly right. And we see that across our large clients who’ve either deployed it with their field organizations who are working, perhaps a smaller number of transactions, but the importance of understanding those even at a more intimate level of detail, is greater than in some ways, you know, that VA, that offset of lack of volume increases the criticality of the insights that you provide, because there’s fewer deals to blend and mistakes or misses across. You’re working 1000 deals or, you know, if you’re in a smaller kind of more transactionally driven cadence.

 

Andy Paul  19:39  

Yeah, absolutely. I want to delve into a little bit and some time we had about this great piece of content you guys had on your site about the 15 sales stats that should scare you, and what to do about it. And I wanted to go through some of those because it was pretty daunting statistics. And so one was talking about pipelines and this is a cache server. Common cliche at this point, but you’ll notice a stat on there from Accenture. 75% of deals in the pipeline never close CSO insights saying 58% of deals in the forecast slip out of the quarter. And obviously some overlap between those two stats, but in your mind, who’s responsible for that? I mean, this is a topic that comes up all the time managers point fingers at reps, reps, point fingers at managers. I mean, where do we start with fixing this problem?

 

Jeff Schmidt  20:28  

Yeah. How do you solve hope casting? I mean, they are daunting statistics. And I was talking with a colleague yesterday about this, there’s a reticence. There are some sales processes and some metrics are so deeply ingrained in the way we operate, and there’s a reticence to think that any kind of adaptation or change will be helpful. The old definition of insanity we all know. So there is a need, it’s a team problem. You have to look at the things with respect to what are your expectations of your sellers and how they engage in. Are you informing them with the right material? And are you making that material readily and obviously available? You know, we went through some pain, as we’ve learned how to distribute the content that sends out multiple emails to our sellers. Our take rate was very low, right, which partially helped inform some of the functionality we built into our product, where we’ve got kind of a Netflix carousel bar at the top of the user experience when they open it up in the morning, and wow, this is great content that’s available for me. So, you know, making sure you’re educating and informing and you’re holding yourself accountable to a standard great, that’s sort of motherhood and apple pie. Sure the part I think where you can become far more productive and we’ve certainly seen this is the insights in the engagement, I think it’s incumbent on leadership to take the accountability there where they’ve sort of pointed the fingers at reps transactions volume phone calls this and what’s the contribution that the leadership is making to this. And it’s the old adage, inspect what we expect. But it’s taking that well beyond that. So we can inform our coaching discussions so that I can be better prepared to get on the line with you and talk about your transaction in a way that’s not binary about Andy. It’s going to close by January 31 for $1,000. And I’ve got the buyer involved Well, okay, that’s sort of the surface level metadata, right, you’ve got to be prepared to get inside of it. So, to me, it’s a team problem, and it includes marketing as well because they are the informers of good content and the creators and the curators of the content that helps us with what we do and how we engage. 

 

Andy Paul  22:53  

If we had our wishes come true it is this, you know, 75% of the pipeline never closes, really a qualification issue. You know, some of that is a targeting issue as you talked about the involved marketing, but how do managers get more effective coaching their reps to say, Look, just, this is not the time for this particular deal. It doesn’t mean they’re not ever going to close. But hey, if they don’t belong in the pipeline right now, let’s take them out. And let’s focus on those because you brought before us, you know, let’s focus on the quality opportunities as opposed to just the bulk. Yeah, I mean, we tried to coach our sellers that, you know, we can live and work with yeses and noes, but maybe they are killers. And so worst answer ever, right?

 

Jeff Schmidt  23:39  

Yeah. Yeah. You know, let’s check back in with me in a month. So that engagement data really is that qualitative. It’s got quantitative benefits for sure. But it does provide qualitative insights into whether or not the example I used earlier on if you’ve got a customer whose engagement is progressing and increasing not only In the frequency of the engagement and the duration of the engagement, but the level of the individuals that are engaging, and informing leaders to that up to the ability rather than putting the onus on the seller to say, let me go update my notes after my meeting to say 66 people were on the call for one hour, there was a VP three directors and procurement, you know, automating that to make that easier to fuel a more productive conversation, I think is a big part of the equation so that those coaching insights can be done more effectively.

 

Andy Paul  24:31  

Do you have very tightly defined exit criteria for each stage so that it’s unambiguously clear whether somebody’s you know, stage one, stage two or discovery phase so on and so forth? We absolutely do and I would love to say that we are, you know, expert at it and never fails. But you know, those statistics include people like us as well.

 

Jeff Schmidt  24:54  

But yeah, we have clearly defined what we call given criteria to be able to to quantify whether we move from discovery to solution and value and through our we have a five stage sales process. Okay.

 

Andy Paul  25:08  

So another interesting statistic that was in this piece was about sales productivity as saying that 60% of sales leaders say that sales cycles are lengthened because their teams don’t have the proper tools

 

Jeff Schmidt  25:24  

I think there’s another statistic, the average company has five to eight different sales, internal productivity tools deployed. So in their stack, how many more do you need? I think part of it is it’s procedure of slicing and understanding what you want out of those and having them tied together in an integrated sort of mindset. And I don’t mean from a I mean, obviously, you’ve got to have it from a technical perspective, that content or data flows, but thinking about the process, it’s almost like the conversion method. When you think about leads coming in the top of the funnel, and the mathematical equation that flows through there, I need that linkage in your sales process and your sales management methodology to ensure that it’s not just again, that binary interaction, that I think that’s where sales coaching just falls down. And the insights in the engagement insights are super powerful to inform better conversation.

 

Andy Paul  26:26  

Yeah, and I think, to your point, to another one, that stats is, I think it’s become so important, because another state that you guys have out there is that 70% of sales reps don’t validate prospect interest during the sales process. That’s coming from our friends at CSO Insights. Gosh, that really is the key to that whole pipeline issue, right? I mean, sales reps don’t understand. Oftentimes sellers don’t understand but by virtue of selling to someone, you’re necessarily changing them. Right? They become more educated, more sophisticated, perhaps and what they could do, what they could achieve with your product or a product like yours. So we have to continue to validate that interest qualification is not a one time event.

 

Jeff Schmidt  27:04  

No, it’s ongoing and it’s precision questioning, people don’t want to be forced to change you know, they resist you got to encourage them but at every step of the process you’ve got to get a yes or no and and eradicate those maybes from the you know, from the funnel and it’s very difficult because if you’re in a situation which is not uncommon for most sellers, if you ask them what’s one of the key things they need, they’ll say, more leads and so they have they they want to hold on to those leads that they do have that they are working and that feeds into why deals don’t close because you’re working on things that may close at some point. Hopefully not before you put a birthday candle on it you know, it’s been in there for a year but getting them confident enough that getting to know them or yes is far more powerful than just again, leading into hope casting.

 

Andy Paul  27:56  

Yeah, no, I agree. 100% that it’s funny. I wrote a blog post. A couple years ago about this where I talked about the best thing that can happen is to get a yes and a no. And the worst outcome is a no decision. Because some people are just horrified by that thinking, you’re out of your mind. But I’m like, gosh, if we worked somebody and they ultimately ended up making no decision, then we just wasted all that time. I mean, they never were serious. They never were qualified.

 

Jeff Schmidt  28:23  

Well, it’s, you know, oddly enough, one of them a mentor of mine a lot of years ago. It’s a sports analogy. Tommy gave me this example. You know, you look at Hall of Fame baseball players, and you know, they generally bat somewhere in around 300, or maybe a little bit higher. The pessimists would say that they fail six to seven out of 10 times the optimist and then the saber nutritions have now learned that you can learn something from those other six or seven at bats and what happened and were they productive. So the point being there is, it’s hard to learn from or maybe it’s hard to learn from a known decision we’ve seen far too many times. Reason codes have no decision. And to me that’s either we didn’t qualify it properly, or we didn’t disqualify it properly. And in the learnings that can come from either of those more directed events from not just the seller, but for the company as a whole, are transforming, but they take confidence and time to be able to get to a point where the company matures and thinks through and the seller gets beyond, I’m going to be berated because I’ve lost a deal.

 

Andy Paul  29:32  

Right? Well, I think sometimes your metric we should be integrating into their implementing systems for managers, instead of looking at percentage of coverage with pipeline is looking at percentage of conversion of pipeline as part of their bonus. And I think that would begin to change behaviors fairly quickly.

 

Jeff Schmidt  29:50  

Yeah, agreed. And we definitely measure conversion of pipelines that’s very important to meet a metric to us.

 

Andy Paul  29:57  

Okay, so Jeff, we’re in the last segment the show I got some stuff questions I asked all my guests and the first one is a hypothetical scenario were you Jeff and you may have been in the situation before have just been hired as VP of sales by a company whose sales are stalled out and time do a sales turnaround CEO is anxious to start hit the reset button get things on track. So what two steps would you take your first week on the job that could have the biggest impact?

 

Jeff Schmidt  30:20  

Well, I think there’s two things information is always critical and data driven insights into that information to support whatever you’re learning and I’ve always found talking to two constituencies is in any time I’ve joined a company and ongoing as I’m a part of any company is very important. One is getting in front of as many customers as possible, and understanding their view of how well they understand your value proposition. Are they using your product? Are they using it the way that you intended and trying to get some insights there and then the second piece is talking directly with the sellers and getting perspective from them. as to where they view their challenges and spending time understanding that we have a positioning problem? Is it a pricing packaging issue? is it? Is it a quality problem? Do we have the right people? Ultimately, it’s not easy to do in the first week, I’m actually not suggesting I could get all that done in a week. But in terms of thought process and prioritization, those would be the two first things that I would think about.

 

Andy Paul  31:22  

Okay, excellent. So some rapid fire questions, you can give me one or two answers or elaborate, if you wish. So the first one is when you Jeff Schmidt are out selling, what’s your most powerful sales attribute?

 

Jeff Schmidt  31:33  

Persistence

 

Andy Paul  31:52  

Who’s your sales role model?

 

Jeff Schmidt  31:37  

Well, I’d love to say it would be Alec Baldwin in Glengarry Glen Ross. But that might lead to too many stereotypes. Actually, my first very first sales manager guy named Dave balanced taught me the value of being on time and prepared. 

 

Andy Paul  31:52  

Yeah. So somebody wants that showing up as 99% of it. So yeah, good. So one book, every salesperson should read.

 

Jeff Schmidt  32:00  

A book called boys in the ball boat 

 

Andy Paul  32:52  

Okay, last question for you is what music is on your playlist these days?

 

Jeff Schmidt  33:37  

I’ve got a wide variety of musical tastes, and I come from Texas, so I tend to lean a lot towards Southern inspired music. There’s a guy called Drake white, who’s out recently. He’s a fantastic kind of person. See, yeah, fantastic. Young new album, young new artists with a great new album out. And then anything by Stevie Ray Vaughan.

 

Andy Paul  34:06  

Wow, love it. Excellent. All right, well good stuff. Well, Jeff, thanks for joining me today. So tell folks how they can connect with you and find out more about you.

 

Jeff Schmidt  34:13  

Yeah, fantastic. I mean, you can always reach out to us on our website. We’d love to hear from anybody who has questions or insights or interest in learning more about our company. We’re happy to connect.

 

Andy Paul  34:31  

Excellent. Okay, thank you and friends, thank you for taking your time to join us today. Remember to make a part of your day every day to deliberately learn something new to help you accelerate your success. And an easy way to do that is make sure you join my conversations every day with experts like my guest today, Jeff Schmidt, who shared his expertise about how to accelerate the growth of your business. So thanks again for joining me Until next time, this is Andy Paul. Good selling everyone. Thanks for listening to the show. If you liked what you heard, and want to make sure you don’t miss any upcoming episodes, please subscribe to this podcasts on iTunes or Stitcher for more information about today’s guests, visit my website at AndyPaul.com