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The story of Southwestern Consulting – My Business Partner Dustin Hillis Featured on the EO Fire Podcast

Dustin Hillis  and I met when we were in college through the Southwestern Advantage door to door summer work program.

Dustin broke the all-time sales record in the company’s 160 year history making $100,000 in one summer. The year prior was the year I broke the company’s recruiting and team building production record.

We became fast friends and the very first day we met was on the company incentive trip in Costa Rica in 2004. We were in a crowd of people who were heading off to a dance club but we started talking and we decided to split off on our own.

That night we literally mapped out, on a cocktail napkin, a vision to one day build the world’s elite Sales coaching, consulting, and speaking company.

Over the next few years we joined up with some other partners and eventually started Southwestern Consulting, which today is an 8 figure business with over 100 team members who has provided 1 on 1 sales and leadership coaching to over 8000 people.

One of those early people we partnered with was Dustin’s best friend from high school, a girl named Amanda, who today is not only still our business partner but is also my amazing wife.

This past week I was so honored to see Dustin be interviewed and featured on one of my other good friends, John Lee Dumas’ podcast. The Entrepreneur On Fire Podcast hosted by John Lee Dumas gets millions of downloads every month, has featured some of the most recognized thought leaders in the world, and is widely regarded as one of the best business podcasts in the world.

Click here to listen to Dustin’s interview with John.

Mental Toughness Habits of Ultra Performers with Ben Newman – Episode 207 of The Action Catalyst Podcast

action catalyst podcast ben newman

Ben Newman is a Best-Selling Author, International Speaker and highly regarded Performance Coach whose clients include Fortune 500 companies, business executives, high performing and professional athletes in the NFL, NBA, MLB, PGA, WNBA as well as the NCAA. Ben’s most recent book, “Leave YOUR Legacy” was ranked by CEO READ as a Top 25 business book of 2015!

Recently, Ben joined Clemson head football coach Dabo Swinney to kickoff Jon Gordon’s Power of Positive Summit that included Tony Robbins, Michael Hyatt, Lewis Howes, Tamika Catchings, Andy Andrews and other great speakers from around the world. Ben also serves as the Performance Coach for the record setting 5-straight Division I National Football Champion North Dakota State Bison.

Known for his ability to inspire and motivate with actionable steps, Ben has presented to numerous FORTUNE 500 companies and other notable organizations, including Great West Life-Canada, the United States Army, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Quicken Loans, Cintas, Northwestern Mutual, the University of Iowa, Boston Medical Center, Australian Gold, NAIFA, AFA Singapore, MARS Snack Foods, the Minnesota Vikings and more –– helping their leaders grow and develop successful national sales teams for years. His corporate speaking events have included financial firms, religious groups, health care groups, charitable organizations, national sales organizations, sports teams, and communication companies.

Ben’s authentic, powerful, and engaging presentations have become nationally recognized. Ben has shared the stage with Jerry Rice, Ray Lewis, Tony Dungy, Colin Powell, Brian Tracy, Ken Blanchard, Jon Gordon, Dr. Jason Selk, Floyd Little, Aeneas Williams, Tony LaRussa, Walt Jocketty, Tom Hegna and other leaders and legends in the world.

Ben lives in his hometown of St. Louis, Missouri with the true measure of his success, his wife, Ami, and their children, J. Isaac and Kennedy Rose.

Show Highlights:

When we get knocked down that’s how we find out what we’re made of. @continuedfight

Focus on what it looks like for you to be your best. @continuedfight

You’re not worrying about the last one and you’re not worrying about the next one. @continuedfight

How can you not give 100% when it’s 100% your choice? @JerryRice

When is the last time you broke down your game film? @continuedfight

You have to have self-evaluation. @rory_vaden

It’s not about beating others, it’s about beating your potential. @rory_vaden

The team must come first. @rory_vaden

If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with a team. – African Proverb

The Action Catalyst is a weekly podcast hosted by Rory Vaden of Southwestern Consulting every Wednesday. The show is regularly in the Top 25 of Business News Podcasts, has listeners from all around the world and shares “insights and inspiration to help you take action.” Each week Rory shares ideas on how to increase your self-discipline and make better use of your time to help you achieve your goals in life. He also interviews special expert guests and thought leaders. Subscribe on iTunes and please leave a rating and review!

The Misconception People Have About Sales

THE MISCONCEPTION PEOPLE HAVE ABOUT SALES

If you think “sales” is a bad word, then you’re thinking about it wrong.

You may think of it poorly because you’ve had a bad experience or maybe even because you’ve had bad information.

“Sales” sometimes gets a bad reputation because even sales-people often misunderstand their role and the value they provide.

Too many salespeople think of selling as “talking people into things.”

But sales is not about talking people into things at all.

Sales should be thought more of as serving people.

In fact, at Southwestern Consulting, we often use the term Servant Selling to help reinforce the core of what true professional salesmanship is all about.

Servant Selling is about helping people make decisions about what is best for them.

Servant Selling is about helping people make their lives better.

Servant Selling isn’t something you do “to” people; it’s something you do “for” people.

People need help understanding options.

People need help coming up with solutions.

People need help finding answers.

People need help overcoming fear.

People need help pushing past procrastination.

People need help making decisions.

And those are all things that a highly trained, well coached, professional salesperson will help them with!

Professional sales people help people make better decisions.

And that is an extremely valuable service.

When someone has a negative connotation around “Sales” it’s because they typically understand it as adversarial.

As in, it’s the salesperson vs the prospect. And it’s a battle and a fight to the finish about who is going to win…

Will the prospect be able to hold out or will the salesperson have the magic words to convince someone and pressure them to buy something they don’t really want?!

Yuck.

That’s not selling.

Servant Selling isn’t adversarial at all.

Servant Selling is never about the salesperson winning and the prospect losing; its always about the prospect winning.

Because Servant Selling isn’t about the salesperson vs the prospect; it’s about the prospect vs some challenge, opportunity, or problem the prospect is trying to overcome in their life.

In that way, Servant Selling is the salesperson and the prospect together, on the same team, working side by side to try and find a solution to make the prospect’s life better.

The salesperson is serving the prospect.

The salesperson is supporting the prospect.

The salesperson is helping the prospect.

And sales doesn’t happen through one way communication; it happens through a conversation.

It happens through a dialogue.

It happens through the salesperson asking questions, listening, and understanding the prospect’s situation first.

And then offering solutions to help them make their life better.

So if you want a more accurate way to think of professional salesmanship…

Think of it as a conversation about someone’s needs, where we ask them questions and understand their situation.

Then, we enthusiastically show them options that will hopefully solve those problems, and then we gracefully lead them through a decision process that helps them make a choice that’s best for them.

Sometimes they buy and that’s great! Sometimes they don’t, and that’s okay too.

The role of an expert sales professional is to just help them make a decision about what’s best for them.

Think of it as a partnership.

Think of it as helping.

Think of it as serving.

What You Need to Know Before You Write a Book

What You Need to Know Before You Write a Book

Many people want to write a book.

I think it’s great.

Books are a fabulous way to document your philosophies, share your beliefs and experience, build credibility around your expertise, and drive leads for your business.

But there is one important realization that virtually all first-time authors completely overlook.

Before you write a book, you need to build an audience.

Before you create the book, you need to create the audience that is going to buy it from you.

Before you think about what your book is going to say, you should first think about how you’re going to sell it.

Every author loves to write but very few know how to sell.

And this creates a conflict because…

Writers write.

Editors edit.

Publishers publish.

Distributors distribute.

Retailers retail.

But no one actually ever SELLS the book!

And what good is all of the work of creating a book if it never gets sold and never gets into the hands of those it was intended for?

Which is a good reminder of why Robert Kyosaki said “Remember, it’s not called New York Times best writing author; it’s New York Times best SELLING author.”

And in order to sell it, you have to have someone to sell it to.

You have to build the audience for it.

You have to build a sales plan for it.

You have to do the work that most people aren’t willing to do.

You have to “Take the Stairs.”

So, before you start daydreaming of all the pearls of wisdom you’d include in your life’s work, spend some time thinking about how you would sell it.

Pretend for a moment that the book is done and you’re holding the first copy in your hands. Then what would you do?

Who would you tell about it?

How would you tell them?

What would you do to compel them to buy it from you?

If you don’t know how to sell, or are afraid to, then you might consider getting a sales coach.

If you have a book and you don’t know how to market it then you might like this free 1 hr training on doing book launches.

But if you’re an aspiring author, build an audience first.

Develop fans and followers first.

Construct a platform first.

Create a sales plan first.

And then once you have it, write the best book ever that captures everything you believe in and go out and sell it like crazy!

The 5 Love Languages for Leaders with Dr. Gary Chapman – Episode 206 of The Action Catalyst Podcast

Dr_Gary_Chapman

Dr. Gary Chapman has degrees from some of the most respected colleges and seminaries. He’s written some of the best-selling books of the past decade and appeared on thousands of radio and television programs across the country. But Dr. Gary Chapman knows more than just a lot of scholarly theories and practical advice—he knows people. He knows how to relate to people, how to have fun and how to make people laugh.

Chapman is a well-known marriage counselor and director of marriage seminars. He hosts a nationally syndicated radio program, Love Language Minute, and a Saturday morning program, Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, that air on more than 400 stations. The 5 Love Languages, one of Chapman’s most popular titles, topped various bestseller charts for years. It has been published in 50 languages, sold more than ten million copies and is currently on the New York Times best-seller list. 2017 marks the 25th anniversary of The 5 Love Languages book.  Chapman has been directly involved in real-life family counseling for more than 35 years. Dr. Chapman also serves as senior associate pastor at Calvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Chapman is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute and holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in anthropology from Wheaton College and Wake Forest University, respectively. He has received M.R.E. and Ph.D. degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and taken postgraduate work at the University of North Carolina and Duke University. Chapman and his wife, Karolyn, have been married for more than 45 years and reside in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Chapmans have two grown children, Shelley and Derek.

Show Highlights:

The 5 love languages applied to leadership with @DrGaryChapman

Life and death are in the power of the tongue. Proverbs 18:21

Actions speak louder than words when acts of service is your primary love language. @DrGaryChapman

It’s universal to give gifts as acts of love. @DrGaryChapman

Quality time is giving someone your undivided attention. @DrGaryChapman

We have long known the power of physical touch. @DrGaryChapman

Out of the 5 love languages, each of us has a primary love language. @DrGaryChapman

When you realize the importance of quality time, it is easy to carve out time for it. @DrGaryChapman

All 5 languages can be learned. @DrGaryChapman

64% of people who leave a job say they left primarily because they didn’t feel appreciated. @DrGaryChapman

If they feel loved, they will stay. If they do not feel loved, they will leave. @rory_vaden

10 phrases you can never say too often as a leader. @rory_vaden

5 acts of service you should engage in to increase the morale and retention in business. @rory_vaden

 

This is a special extended interview! Send an email to RoryPodcast@gmail.com with your first name in the subject line to gain access!

Learn more from Dr. Gary Chapman at 5lovelanguages.com and appreciationatwork.com

The Action Catalyst is a weekly podcast hosted by Rory Vaden of Southwestern Consulting every Wednesday. The show is regularly in the Top 25 of Business News Podcasts, has listeners from all around the world and shares “insights and inspiration to help you take action.” Each week Rory shares ideas on how to increase your self-discipline and make better use of your time to help you achieve your goals in life. He also interviews special expert guests and thought leaders. Subscribe on iTunes and please leave a rating and review!

The Determinant of One’s Happiness

The Determinant of One's Happiness

One of the most empowering and sometimes simultaneously destructive truths is that you always find what you’re looking for.

If you look for the positive in a person, an event, a scenario or a situation, then you will find something positive.

If you look for the negative in a person, an event, a scenario or a situation, then you will find something negative.

Which suggests that it matters much less what is, and matters much more what you think about what is.

You then, are the author of your own life.

You are the creator of your own happiness or unhappiness.

Your positivity or negativity is completely your own fault.

What we need to train ourselves to do then is not to spend so much time looking for a better situation, thinking that there is an easier way, or wishing some person was different.

Instead, we need to train ourselves to see the positive in whatever it is we are looking at.

We need to focus on looking for the positive in each scenario.

We need to be intentional about finding the good in every circumstance.

And we need to be deliberate about seeing the best in other people.

We need to notice what is right with the world and what is right with the people in our world.

Because it is a peculiar truth of the human mind that we often care less about accuracy and more about just proving ourselves right.

So whatever we decide to be true about ourselves, our friends, our jobs, and our circumstances is what our brain will seek to validate as right.

Our brain typically searches for and recognizes only the information that supports its original premise.

So be careful.

Be careful what you choose.

Because whether you choose to see the positive or the negative is what is likely to actually become true for your life and be the determinant of your happiness.