Love as a Sales Strategy

EPISODE 14

How can we have a business podcast without talking about sales? As it turns out, we used to do sales all wrong - so we take this opportunity to really understand the drastic difference between how we used to approach sales vs. how we now apply a little LOVE to the process.

Listen on:

SpotifyIcon
Apple PodcastIcon
AnchorIcon

Speakers

Feel the love! We aren't experts - we're practitioners. With a passion that's a mix of equal parts strategy and love, we explore the human (and fun) side of work and business every week together.

JeffProfile

Jeff Ma
Director

linkedin-badge
janefig-2 (2)

Greg Duggin
Account Services Director

linkedin-badge
ChrisProfile

Chris Pitre
Vice President

linkedin-badge
MohProfile

Mohammad Anwar
President

linkedin-badge

Transcript

Hide Transcript

Jeff Ma
Hello and welcome to love as a business strategy, a podcast that brings humanity to the workplace. We're here to talk about business. But we want to tackle topics that most business leaders shy away from we believe that humanity and love should be at the center of every successful business. I'm your host, Jeff Ma. I'm a director at Softway, an agency based out of Houston, Texas that specializes in digital transformation, culture and branding. Each episode, we're diving into one element of business or strategy and testing our theory of love against it. Today's topic is love as a sales strategy. And I'm always excited when I get to do these episodes, where we get to connect topics that feel naturally really disjointed, like love and sales, like what is the connection here? And I really want to unpack that today with my guest. I've assembled three of Softway's foremost experts in sales. And two of them you might recognize we have Mohammad Anwar, president and CEO - Hello, Moh.

Mohammad Anwar
Hey, Jeff.

Jeff Ma
We have Chris Pitre, our VP.

Chris Pitre
Hello.

Jeff Ma
And I'm really excited to invite a new face. This show as well. Mr. Greg Duggin. Hello, Greg.

Greg Duggin
Hello, Jeff. Thanks for having me.

Jeff Ma
Awesome. Greg is our Account Services Director. He hails from Australia. And he's been with Softway for the past five years. And he's spent his career working across a number of different industries. His background is in consulting clients business strategy, and leading sales and marketing groups. And he's a huge, huge, valuable asset to the company as well, for sure. So Greg, thank you so much for joining us.

Greg Duggin
Thank you. Thanks for having me.

Jeff Ma
Unfortunately, I will make you go first, though, on the icebreakers section. So your question today is, if you had your own talk show who would be your first guest?

Greg Duggin
Good question. that's a that's a good one. You stumped me. Hey, Jeff. That was not what I was expecting. As the icebreaker

Jeff Ma
Well, you know, we'll let you think on it. I'll move on to Chris and we'll come back to you, Chris, your question is...

Chris Pitre
Beyonce.

Jeff Ma
All right, moving on to Moh. Chris, your question is Who would you who would play you in a movie of your life?

Greg Duggin
Beyonce.

Chris Pitre
That would actually be a an honor.

Jeff Ma
I will come back to Chris as well. So Mohammad.

Chris Pitre
I feel like I would want somebody who has not been featured in Hollywood to give a young black actor a chance, so I would say unnamed, unnamed the future the next. The next big actor, young black Hollywood would be playing me, I would want somebody undiscovered, right.

Jeff Ma
Mohammad, if you had to choose a ghostwriter to write a biography of your life, who would you choose to write it?

Mohammad Anwar
Go to Greg.

Greg Duggin
Yes, Jeff. They'd be they'd be co guest. You know, you guys know me. I'm a huge sports fan, ultra competitive guy. I'm playing a lot of golf at the moment. As I'm getting older, it's about the only thing I can do. I would have Tiger Woods. I'm really fascinated just with his story of being a child prodigy his dad was his coach. He learned a lot of lessons and and now like, you're starting to see a lot of him coaching his kid. He's going through obviously a lot of drama, stuff like that. But you know, I'm a huge fan of his and he's obviously far from perfect. And then also I love listening to Joe Rogan. So you know, that guy is just the talent. I'd love to have him on. He meets so many different people. He's got perspective on some different things and for a guy that was a hosting fear factor and a B list actor. It just, you know, sold the rights to his podcast for $150 million. So I'd love to talk to him and learn a little bit about that.

Jeff Ma
Great answer. Awesome. Moh. Anything yet?

Mohammad Anwar
Yes. My answer would be Frank Danna.

Jeff Ma
You'd want you'd want Frank. You want Frank Danna?

Mohammad Anwar
Yes. The one on this podcast, yes.

Jeff Ma
Okay. Well, we'll unpack that in a future episode.

Chris Pitre
Like I would have chose like Barrington de Thurston from the onion, or David Sedaris,

Jeff Ma
or someone who writes for a living, I don't know...

Mohammad Anwar
I want someone to write about me who knows me. So that's why

Jeff Ma
What about me?

Mohammad Anwar
I don't know, I think he writes better.

Jeff Ma
Okay, well, let's dive right in guys.

Chris Pitre
That's a great way to jump into this love topic

Greg Duggin
Truth. It's a part of love.

Jeff Ma
So, so, Softway has constantly learned to grow over time, right? We talk about it all the time how much we've transformed. But I would say that sales is probably one of our most significant evolutions. Greg, we wanted you here today to help us dive into this topic. And if you don't mind, I'd love for you to help start us off by painting this picture, I want you to take us back in time, let's get in the Time Machine together and share what sales was like when you first started in the role.

Greg Duggin
Happy to do so. Um, let's just think about painting a picture. No, think about all the famous artists that would hate to paint this picture because it was ugly. Look, you know, when I joined Softway, five years ago now, I think to the day or two the week and it's been a monumental shift for us and we're where we're always we're always trying to get better. But I mean, we were we were a horrible sales group. We were individually focused on things. We weren't building relationships with clients to what we do now. We it was an us against them mentality internally. There was a lot of selfishness. There was, I mean, I could go on, right. How long is this podcast go for? Yeah, there was a lot of mistrust. Yeah, I think I was talking to Mohammad about this not long ago, there was, yeah, we didn't even know some people that were in the process of helping us put together proposals. You know, we worked with two different offices we office in in Bangalore office here, and we just had really poor relationships. We didn't focus on it. And we it was it was, if you look back on it, now, it's kind of farcical what it was. And obviously, you know, we're happy that we've addressed a lot of it. We've got some some areas to continue to improve on. But it's amazing that we were doing what we're doing. And still making sales and I think we were just lucky with our timing and the capabilities we had we definitely weren't getting anywhere near out of what we should have with with the sales group. And I know we'll probably touch on this a little bit later. But we to do, what we did was was, it's interesting that we achieve some of what we some of the sales we did when we were so poor on many fronts and relationships with the quarters didn't exist both with customers and interest internally. To put a bow on it.

Jeff Ma
I'll, I'll, I'll accelerate this conversation with what I think of when I think five years ago, five years ago, I was in the role of, you know, Director directing project management essentially. And so my group, when I when we thought of sales, we we all let out like a collective grunt or sigh, just thinking about it, because what we were used to is receiving, we won a project and we're like, Great, good job. Everyone's congratulating each other. And then they hand us like a two page sheet of paper with like, like a paragraph of what we should do and like a dollar sign and a signature on it, like here it is. And literally, we'd have to then construct posts like post sale, what this actually needed to be in the price was set. And we are already locked in the first thing we have to do is call this client up and say, yeah, so we know nothing about what you guys do, but we know nothing about you. But let's start working together.

Greg Duggin
Classic handoff, right?

Jeff Ma
This and that's, I'm some might think we're exaggerating that story. I think that was I can think of this project that that was. So that's from my perspective of that of that time machine. Mohammad, Chris, you guys have any recollections?

Chris Pitre
Okay. So coming in, I just remember there being this laundry list of proposals on the whiteboard and Mohammad would come in. Have you followed up? Have you followed up? Have you followed up? Have you followed up? And everybody had to, like stand up and say whether they had followed up, how many times they had followed up, and whether the client had gotten back? Or if we knew what the decision was. I just remember like, what is it is this is an interesting way, right? Like as I joined, right when we started to, to shift, but it was very much volume metric. And it was it was not an environment where you, you could talk about the relationship or other aspects of the sales process. It was just whether a proposal gone out and have we followed up on it, and did we get an answer. Right. So

Mohammad Anwar
We were number-focused, right? Yeah. Hitting goals, hitting quotas.

Greg Duggin
very much a quantitative over quality focus right, Moh? I'm at a time and you know, it's a good day, Jeff. Like, you bring it up. Good topic, right? It was a bring up the us against them, right? There was a, we were fostering a culture of unforgiveness, we weren't supporting each other. We were, you know, handing up a mess over over the fence and then not doing anything to help our colleagues. And that builds up over time. And yeah, there's a lot of resentment. And there was, here we go again, you know, there was, it didn't bode well for the things that we really wanted to do as a business. And it took us kind of some, some deep thinking to look into that to really get to how we would solve that. But, you know, I think every business has these types of issues, right, whether it's a sales group that has worked out, but to a delivery group, you know, if you're executing a project, a project manager, not being in the know, and not set up for success, you know, a product based business out there, you know, being disconnected to the marketing group or the sales for and I think to bring that back to kind of our situation, there's always misalignment but there's a lot more things people can be doing and, you know, we really had an impact on not just kind of our level of sales, but our quality of sales. And, again, came back to relationships, we just we really failed to connect everyone together and most of the time that led to, you know, us having to do a lot more cleanup, it led to not profitable projects. And it led to, you know, one and done types of types of business and clients, which in the professional world or anyone that's relying on sales, you know, bringing revenue in, that doesn't set you up for long term success and growth if you've got one and done clients and thankfully, we've implemented a few things that that have really changed things for us but it is it there's something to draw upon that type of story. I think for anyone that's listening in, if you can't correct that, you know, often you you look at the ways of why it's a one and done client, you think about what we're not selling right or, you know, that's just the type of business we're in once you have relationships and you do a good job, generally more often than not, they become longer term or repeat clients. And looking back on that now, five years ago, it's very clear why we were in that situation of a long list of prospects and opportunities as Chris mentioned, and one and done projects.

Jeff Ma
Yeah. So we we went through a, we're still going, we're always transforming. But we went through a significant overhaul in how we approached sales. Chris, I know you helped lead that effort, can you? Can you kind of set us up with what's changed? Or what what tangibly changed to address that that picture that Greg's painted for us?

Chris Pitre
Yeah, no. So I strongly believe in the phrase that charity starts at home, and then it spreads abroad. So when we started transforming our sales process, we had to start internally, which was fixing those things that Greg just listed, which was the alignment internally the Do we know each other? Do we know what we do, right? Like sales didn't often know what delivery could do and what they were capable of. But yet, people were estimating for things not really understanding what was truly being estimated, and whether the client was going to get to their outcome. So by one bringing in that Internal alignment, and then sitting down and going through a rethink of how we actually approach customers, right? So there is generally this notion in sales that you need to know your scripts. You need to have your, you know, capabilities deck, and you need to, you know, know how to handle objections. And all those things are somewhat true. But those don't actually help you really build a relationship with your customer. And when I say relationship that's getting to know them individually. What are their professional ambitions? What are their personal likes and dislikes? Like? What are they drinking, when you're in that meeting? Right, all those small little things, help you really understand what that customer is truly seeking what they need versus what they want. And then taking that into a process where your teams are now understanding how to align and then against that alignment, build better positioning where you can go in with a solution. That will help address the client's needs and wants, as well as the overall business outcomes. And so us just rethinking our approach and knowing that, that requires more time for sure, right? It's not this like, Oh, this is more efficient way of selling. No, this is just a, a more human way of selling, right, and, you know, having the ability to work with customers more intimately during the process. So sales are done with the customer, you know, with our approach now, not to a customer. So we're not just talking at people and hoping they buy and forcing them to sign on the dotted line or coming back with these little salesy tactics that feel shmoozy and like a used car salesman. And that really helped transform the start of the relationship with the client and build that trust earlier in.

Mohammad Anwar
Yeah, and I think a lot of it was very process driven. You know, just speaking vulnerably, I'm the one who was guilty for instituting all those processes in the sales department that, you know, that was very volumetric centric, quantitative oriented. And it was all about process, like, do this, do this, do this and you follow this process and you lead to success. But what helped us with the transformation and we're still transforming on is that it starts with behaviors. It starts with the behaviors of you know, me as the one leading the organization down to our salespeople, how we behave with each other internally and externally towards each other. And when we change our focus on to the behaviors aspect and less on the process that helps us start to be more human and work our relationships internally, human to human and then beyond to our customers as well instead of just being a process that drives the interaction and communication.

Greg Duggin
Yeah, I think I think Mohammad, you mentioned some stuff that just brings a few things up for me, like when I first started at Softway it was very much about I, Right, you know, you're an individual, a bunch of individual sales folks, sales team is disconnected to every other team don't have a strong enough relationship with clients. There's a lot of negatives, and then we kind of transitioned to more of a, you know, we as a group, and I think we've made headway in, we as a grand team, right? Not sales versus non sales. But you know, when we put everyone together Softway, and we bring the best of everyone, no matter if you're a project manager, you're the creative designer or director or you're an account manager that has experience in a certain industry. What we deliver for customers today is very different compared to what we used to when we bring people together. So there's a component of inclusion. But we have to there's a lot of steps. We took to even get to that place, and we're not perfect. We're not there yet. I put my hand up and say I got a lot of room to improve on that. You know, we've had those conversations about the other things that I've done that that is harbored mistrust or you know, I have not forgiven people for you know, when someone's let me down as part of the the sales and things like that. But when we do get overcome those things and have those conversations, folks, we do get to a point where what we deliver for clients is far greater than what we do when we're on our own. I think there's lessons to be learned in that. And if you're in those situations now, getting to this critical conversations will address them sooner rather than later before they become big blow ups or things that you can't repair are going to be critical for people to leading sales and marketing or groups in that that area, or anyone really leading a group that has friction with other groups.

Chris Pitre
Yeah. And I think to that point, Greg, you know, fissures on the team, or that unforgiveness is actually visible and felt by clients, whether we like to like to admit it or not. Right. So I can recall times where we walked into a room and there was that clear division. And when it came time to q&a, whether it was follow up conversations and you know, one member of the buying team was talking to us, every member of the team and you know, everybody's giving a different answer to the same question and they're aligning on their end and then saying like, Well, you know, the account manager told me this and the creative director told me that I want it right. And it creates that very visible misalignment. And you know, when you are trying to get a deal that could be pretty sizable six figures plus, you know, those small things actually add up greatly from a customer end, right, like, who wants to pay for work that's coming from a team that's already divided? And we just started talking to them, like, what is the project going to look like? So it can be you know, pretty, pretty damaging to getting a the buy in, but also the the trust of a client when your team has all those feelings internally that are unresolved.

Jeff Ma
I remember when, when we used to sit down I remember the room we were in we would come we you and I would sit down. You leading the sales team and me leading the delivery, essentially, sitting down in a room to try to resolve these ridiculous kind of fires put out these fires of like clients being extremely unhappy. And I think you and I had a decent relationship, like personally but like I remember the way we would have to talk to each other was very, it was like a bit of a battle of kind of like blame games and kind of like figuring out well, you sold it this way. Well, you guys could be doing this to fix it like, and it's really interesting. I contrast that today. And I get this real sense that the the people working on a sales effort are very supportive. Like I never felt that back in the day, I felt like I feel really supported by sales. Like I feel like I'm being looked out for, by by people in sales. What do you what does that come from? Or how did that change?

Greg Duggin
It was an evolving thing, I think there was a realization that we were not doing well enough. And we had to look inside ourselves and accept feedback from other people that had the aim of the game in sales to build relationships and connections and we're terrible at doing it internally. If you're terrible doing it internally, how do you do it out in the real world, right with businesses and other people? And, you know, you're spot on Jeff, I was gonna say the word battle right? There was so many times there where you and I were leading groups and and that probably, you know reverberated back down the chain to our teams and that that's not healthy. You know, we've we've come a long way I think where we've built up relationships, you've had to address the things that we've had problems with with each other. And that's, that's still an ongoing process between different people, depending on you know, where they're at, and their own their own journeys and their own relationships. But yeah, I mean, I don't disagree with anything you said it was, it was problematic to say the least. And I think one of the big changes that you can look to as as someone who wears a sales hat, I went through, you know, my own personal journey where I was thinking about, you know, why do people do these things to me and why don't they care about me and why are they impacting my staff and why can't they see that I'm trying to help Softway get ahead and building businesses and new client relationships and things like that. And why can't you know they support our sales team? And I think I've had many conversations with many folks, Chris, Mohammad, plenty of other directors at Softway and thinking about it from a me and an I perspective was not helpful. Thinking about, well, if I feel that way, and people are maybe not supporting me, I guarantee you, there's things I'm not doing on the flip side for them. And I wouldn't say I'm completely there yet. But as a sales leader or leader of a team and things like that you really do have to have a deep, hard look at yourself and realize what you're not doing. And, you know, I know, through a number of our podcasts, we've talked about reflection versus introspection, and it's easy to reflect it's very hard to introspect, and you know, I think one of the days you know, Mohammad and I, we had many, many conversations about this, you know, Mohammad's fear was like you do it because it's the right thing, not because you expect to return out of it. And we are practicing a lot of servant leadership at Softway, and I think for the sales folks, when they realize that they want to do, right by Softway, they want to do right by their extended team members by their whole team, they've got to get amongst it and do things themselves. And they've got to be part of the team. And I think you started to see a shift there. And that's problematic at times as well, where you know, you under the boundaries, maybe cross over a little bit, but to see what other people go through in a project, or when you're selling and what they live through on a day to day basis, then you can start to actually have empathy for them. And look at the crap they deal with and maybe some of the times that you set up for them and when you start to look at that, I think that starts to trigger thoughts internally of what are you going to do to fix that because you're responsible for it. And even when I right now, I get kind of a fuzzy feelings. I'm like, Man that that brings out emotions in me and the things where I'm like, Damn, that annoyed me. Oh, damn, I really set that person out poorly. Or, damn, that project got screwed up because I did something bad. And it sucks to say it out loud, but that's I think that's where it stemmed from that's how we started make some changes with some good coaching and mentoring from people that have seen the pros and cons and gone through that and Chris and Mohammad of all Chris has brought different perspectives from outside in other relationships and working his career. Mohammad has been open enough to kind of consider his his own thoughts and mind around this as well. Right? He's had to change, he's had to open up, he's had to rethink things. So it starts with yourself, right? Hmm. You got to realize the stuff you don't do well and you gotta realize how you're not really supporting other people. And if you want it, other people want it as well. rather than worrying about yourself, worry about them and good things come to people that do good things and care about people is how I say it these days. That wasn't always the case back then.

Jeff Ma
I think you you answered my question really just hit the nail on the head with the word empathy. When I was saying it seems like I feel supported nowadays by the sales team. You summed it up perfectly to make sense now you guys just have you have a lot more empathy in your, in your in your perspective, you you, you really, I feel like you guys get more perspective of everybody's hardships and things and you're there to help. It's actually great.

Chris Pitre
Yeah. And that translates into the approach that you take with a client, right? Like that same supportive building that we have internally, when the client feels that, like, that's where the trust is built, but that's also where the walls are let down, right? Like the, the perspective that I try and take into external conversations is this is not us versus them. This is me trying to become a supportive member of their team, right? Like I'm trying to make sure the customer sees me not as a vendor, but as someone on their team that is there to try and make their world easier their life better. Right. And, and that is something that many sales leaders that I've seen in the past have not tried to get their teams to really understand which is don't look at the customer as an outsider as a you know, a versus It's a plus it's an and it's a both. But if you walk in with that mindset, you actually will go in and ask the right questions, right? When you're going there to try and figure out how you help someone, you're not trying to just get to the deal as fast as possible or get, you know, the deal as high as possible, right? You're really trying to understand like, wait, what are you trying to do? And then when they say things that don't make sense, or don't ladder back to that outcome, you feel more comfortable saying like, so here's how I would approach it. And here's what I've learned, or here's what I've seen, right? You're more consultative, but you're coming from a place of I'm in your corner, and I actually just want you to succeed and if you don't choose me, it won't be because I you know, did not give my all or best or best advice. It could be other reasons but you cannot say that you know Softway left you you know and did not give you all of their best and you know the greatest attention possible.

Greg Duggin
That's a good point, Chris. I know, Mohammad, you've probably got a few examples yourself of where we probably have to deliver those hard messages to certain clients where it didn't really ladder up for us to keep going. And we have to be true to ourselves and work for them. But I mean, I know, you know, you've got a story to tell. Right? So if you got one already,

Mohammad Anwar
yeah, we've, we've, we've had several customers that, you know, we've definitely tried to build a very strong relationship, and we successfully have done so. And it makes it easier to have those conversations around, you know, this is what's best for you, this is what's best for your project. And we have to, and we were able to have those courageous conversations that the customers even say, Hey, you know, this is not something we are going to be able to help you with, right? This is not something we're going to be able to support you with. And it comes from a place of empathy, and we don't want them to be, you know, signing up with us for something that, you know, they're not going to be able to achieve in terms of their outcomes, and we have to be able to walk away from sizeable opportunities or sizable business prospects, because it's the right thing to do, because we are not capable or ready to support a client in that instant, or that particular project situation, and having empathy for what the customer is trying to accomplish and achieve and our own team and we have to make those tough calls, but we do so in a very supportive way. We try to always make the customer understand why we are not going to be able to support them and help them but also try to guide them what they can do to still achieve their goals and outcomes.

Greg Duggin
Yeah, Mohammad, you know, with what you talked about brings up an example where, you know, we we have to walk away from a client opportunity that was, you know, six figures, potentially seven figures and above and potentially really juicy for Softway, right. And I remember, you know, we did everything we could to try and make the deal work. And the client had typical type friction between a sales and marketing group and an IT group. And that was becoming very clear to us, that would be a problem throughout the project. And I remember when we finally walked away from that deal after many months and a lot of hours and as a, as a sales leader or a salesperson, when you do that, that hurts, right? It really hurts to walk away from commission, and knowing you're impacting sales goals and things like that. But I remember the power that situation had and we didn't do it for this reason. But that really, I think, helped our relationship with internal stakeholders, even within Softway. And I saw when we went and chased different types of deals and business after that situation. We were a lot more collected in our approach. We had each other's back. And it was it wasn't like we we set out to show people that we've got their back at Softway, if you're not in a sales group. It's just something we did because it was the right thing. And we wanted to protect our business ourselves, the wider group, but that turned into camaraderie that we didn't have before that and so there are you know, that was, I think back. And I hadn't really reflected on that until now. And then I do remember kind of pursuing some stuff and working with the same people where it's probably the first time I felt like Actually, these guys have got our back. And so I think, you know, for anyone that's running a department or having friction between departments, if you run the sales group, and your call center doesn't want to support your operations group is not supporting you. There's probably things that you're not doing yourself to support them that you should be looking at first, before playing blame games or thinking about other people should be doing things for you. And I think an example we bring up, you know, was, was probably a big change for us was probably the first time I saw that, right.

Mohammad Anwar
Yeah. And I also think customers who we have said no to, you know, from opportunities haven't, like disappeared, they've come back to us with second, third opportunities. There's, in fact, some customers we've turned down two or three times and they've come back a fourth time and then it perfectly aligns up with our specialties or capabilities and a desire to do work. And we've taken on projects, you know, third, fourth attempt. So even from a customer standpoint, they appreciate the honesty, they appreciate the, the, you know, transparency into why we are unable to take on their project and also telling them what they need to hear, like if we if we see it's an issue on their side, we generally have been very transparent and say, Look, we see misalignment on your side, we see problems internally on your team. And, you know, until you guys are aligned, it would not be fruitful to bring in a partner like us to support you because it wouldn't get you the outcomes you can achieve. This is what you really need to go solve. Go solve these issues internally. And and then we're happy to support you. So we've been able to do that and not necessarily piss off or disappointed because maybe we disappointed them, but ultimately, they appreciated us.

Chris Pitre
But I would say that in certain situations, when we have those honest conversations, the clients like, Well, can you help me get my team aligned? Right? And it turns into, like, I can think of one specific example recently where, you know, we are talking to a client and a customer who is trying to embark upon a transformation of their culture. But there's not a lot of alignment among leadership as well as with their global, you know, teams. And we could have just said, you know, what, figure it out. And, you know, we tried to sort of communicate that, but, you know, they're like, Well, can you come meet with us and talk to us about it so we can get them, you know, engaged, right. And it was a situation where we built that relationship with the most critical sort of stakeholders, the one that are the ones that are, you know, our day to day, and they are now to a place where they don't like having meetings with their teams without Softway in the room. Not because we are the only ones that can speak to things and not because they don't know what to speak to. Because there's that level of trust, but also, there is comfort in having a third party come and mitigate, you know, the politics, the different perspectives, and, you know, like having no sort of skin in the game, so to speak, to be able to just, you know, speak truth to all the powers in the room. And it turns into, you know, we talk about, you know, love, it turns into a situation where the client cannot see their lives or their projects without Softway in the mix, which, you know, I would challenge every listener, think about, like, how many clients can say that about you and your business, right? If a customer cannot honestly say I cannot do this without x company, in the mix, there's a chance and an opportunity for you and your sales team, as well as the entire company, whoever servicing that customer to try and get to that place. And that does take relationships, that does take sacrifice. It takes compromise, it takes selflessness, it takes service, it takes listening and empathy, it takes all of those things. Because without it, like, I don't know where we would be with this one customer because, like, whatever we say, even if it's just like, you know, the sky is green and the ground is blue, they believe it right? Like, they just go with it like, yep, from now on, that's gonna be it. And that's not to say that we take our influence lightly. It's just that we know that influence is important.

Jeff Ma
We get asked, we get asked a lot at this podcast, you know, you say love is a business strategy. But how do you define love? What is love? Love is such a big thing. And we're like, yeah, it is a big thing. Chris, you just named the list, it's selflessness. It's honesty, it's serving others. It's empathy. It's being human with each other. It's all these things. And, and that's why, you know, that approach is sometimes very novel for some people. And it's kind of scary to say, Well, what do you mean Love as a business strategy? Well, we picked a word that sums up everything you need, if you'd like the whole list, it would take a much longer title. I don't think they allow that for podcasts. So it's love as a business strategy for a very good reason. And Greg, you know, I want to tie this all together. I want to tie this back. I mean, we've been we've been, we've been sprinkling in love there, we've been sprinkling all these sales, you know, benefits and things like that. But what's the takeaway for the audience here, Greg? Like what? tying it to love? What are the what you want them to take away in this lesson?

Greg Duggin
I think so first of all, for for, again, the takeaway. I think it's important that everyone realizes that no matter if you're a salesperson or not, you're selling and influencing whether it's inside your business or with clients, and relationships is key. And some of the things Chris mentioned, are ultra important. And if you're not doing them, you need to start doing them. You need to ask yourself here as a leader, are you doing those things yourself? And if you're not, then you've got to start seeing how you're going to overcome that. If you have a team where you're seeing those things not happen. You need to start having Crucial Conversations with those folks. To say, how are we doing a good enough job. And the reality is most sales groups have got room to improve. As you nailed before, Jeff, you've got to be selfless. You've got to focus on relationships, and you've got to have empathy for others. Right? Don't do it because you think there's a financial return for it. If you're in sales, do it because it's the right thing to do, and you'd want it done for you. And when you do that, you take that approach to things more often than not you, your team, your department, your company, will have more success.

Jeff Ma
Very nicely put. Mohammad, Chris, anything else to add in closing here?

Chris Pitre
I just echo what Greg said around like, when you are not looking to serve yourself. I actually tell the sales teams like I realized that by serving everybody else, I was always taken care of, from a commission perspective, from a support perspective, right like I never had to worry about whether Somebody will show up to a meeting. And I think that's always the the fear of a salesperson is what support Am I going to get? Especially if I'm putting myself out there with a new customer or prospect or returning customer? Like is my team going to show up? It's like a fear in the back of your head. Right. And when you are selfless, it does come back to you in more ways than one.

Jeff Ma
Awesome. Well, thank you guys for joining me today. Greg, a special thanks to you for for joining us a really great conversation and a great trip down memory lane, if you will. Right. Yeah, it's a little PT a little bit of PTSD going on, but that's cool.

Greg Duggin
I love rehashing it too. Makes me think about probably where I'm where I'm at where the team's at what else we're going to do to keep getting better. And yeah, hats off to you, Jeff, for what you've been doing for the podcast, I've been tuning in a lot of valuable lessons.

Jeff Ma
Thank you. Yeah, and we're posting new episodes every Tuesday. And you know, for the audience if there's anything you'd like to hear us cover if you have any feedback, valuable feedback for us, we'd love to hear it at softway.com/LAABS. And if you like what you heard today, please do leave us a review and subscribe on Apple, Spotify, it would mean a whole lot to us. And with that, I thank you guys again and we will see everybody next week. Have a good one.

Mohammad Anwar
Thank you.

Chris Pitre
Thank you. Bye.

Greg Duggin
Bye.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

More Episodes