In this episode of The Hire Talent's podcast, Optimizing the Hiring Process, we are joined by Justin Weeder

Owner and head coach at The Covert Closer where they help organizations and individuals implement the LISTEN method to scale sales results. Additionally, he is currently developing a high performing team of Rockstars as the Director of Sales at PaySimple. 


To work with Justin you can contact him at https://www.thecovertcloser.com/
Optimizing The Hiring Process Podcast

Transcript

Fletcher Wimbush:
Welcome to the Hire Talent's Podcast, optimizing your hiring process made by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, and today we're really happy to have Justin Weeder. He is a sales coach and sales guru. I got a chance to check out your bio. You have a really interesting story. So I'm going to let you talk about that in a little bit. And so I'm curious to hear it from you and how this all came to be. Also your method is something that's very intriguing to me and the listening method, and this is something I found myself talking to clients about like all week this week was here's the roadmap on how to hire, but there's this little skill that you need to practice and master that... I mean, we can teach people, but at the end of the day you got to internalize it to become an expert. The listening method is something I can't wait to talk about. So thanks for being here, Justin, and tell us your story. How did you end up a sales coach?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. So the first thing to understand about me is I'm not your typical sales guy. I'm an introvert. I'm very much a geek, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Love it.

Justin Weeder:
And I grew up that way. I grew up playing Counter-Strike with my friends in our rooms with our computers everywhere. So anyways, doing that, being a geek landed me working at Circuit City, if you remember Circuit City.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yup, yup.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. And I worked in the tech bench just fixing computers. So one day we're like overrun during the holidays, and the sales manager for computers comes over and he's my boss. And he's like, "Hey dude, I need you to go sell a computer." I'm like, "I don't know anything about selling." He's like, "No, it's fine. You know all the specs, you'll be fine. Just go over there and sell it." I'm like, "Oh, okay." He's like, "All you have to answer their questions."

Justin Weeder:
Typical salesman, right? Totally underplaying what really has to go on. And I'm like, "All right, dude. All right, I'll go over there. You know whatever, I have to." So as I'm walking over there, he comes up behind me and he hands me this clipboard. He goes, "Hey, okay. So when they want to buy the computer, then just ask them if they want all this stuff." And I was like, "Dude." He's like, "Just ask them if they want it. If they don't want, it's fine. Don't argue with them." I'm like, "Okay."

Justin Weeder:
So anyways, I go over there and I talked to them and because I love computers and I'm a geek and I have the tech bench shirt on and I'm the expert and they love it, and we pick a computer. So then we go over to the checkout and I pull out my clipboard.

Justin Weeder:
I'm like, "All right, I can do this. All right." So I said, "Do you want a laptop bag?" And the guy's like, "Yeah. Yeah, I want a bag." So he goes over there and gets a bag. He comes back. I'm like, "Do you want a mouse?" He goes, "Yeah. Yeah, I want a mouse."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Of course.

Justin Weeder:
So then he goes and picks out a mouse. Of course, right. He comes over and then I'm like, "Do you want to anti-virus software?" And he goes, "I don't know. Should I get anti-virus software?" And for me, that's when the magic happened. I was like, "Yes. Yes, you should."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Absolutely.

Justin Weeder:
He's like, "Okay." Absolutely.

Fletcher Wimbush:
I don't want to have to clean up all your mess in a month from now.

Justin Weeder:
Exactly. I don't want to see you at the tech bench a month from now with a ton of viruses. And so I went down the list and he bought everything on the list. He said yes to everything. All I had to do was ask. It was crazy. And so I got a lot of acclaim, and your numbers show up on the little sales board thing everybody could log into on the computers.

Fletcher Wimbush:
You were 100%, one for one.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. One for one, I'm good to go. I should have actually ended my career there, I would have been going out on a high. And I had the TV guys coming over to me, and the TV guys are like the celebrities of the store because they sell the real big ticket stuff.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Oh yeah.

Justin Weeder:
And they were high fiving me. And like, "Oh my God." Anyway, and that just changed the way I thought about selling because before I thought it was like this kind of like... I look over there and see these guys selling and I'm like, "Oh, those guys are just conniving. They're manipulating those people into buying stuff." And sure, some salespeople do that but that's not really selling.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Well, we spend a lot of time pitching. I know back in the day when I was running sales teams, we'd call it like throwing up on the customer, right? Right. You're just like spouting a bunch of nonsense or features or things, right?

Justin Weeder:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Fletcher Wimbush:
But I mean, your story totally highlights the difference, right? It's not necessarily telling people, it's asking the right question, right?

Justin Weeder:
Right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And it's one that's a natural question, like of course I want a mouse. You don't have to tell me how great the mouse is.

Justin Weeder:
Right. Yeah. And I didn't have to follow him over there and help him pick one. He just went and picked the one he wanted.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Exactly. I love it. I love it. So you start in retail sales and you get pushed out of your shell, and what happens after that?

Justin Weeder:
So after that I got kind of arrogant and I turned into one of those show up and throw up guys. And so a few years after that I had been working in software and I got let go from that job for doing stupid stuff. We don't have to get into that. But that put me really at rock bottom, like living with my mom at 25 years old and paying her rent even, didn't get to live for free. Yeah. That's that's how much you know I F'ed up, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. She wasn't going to give you that free ride.

Justin Weeder:
Exactly. Right. She's like, "Yeah, this is your fault." Which I'm grateful for actually. But so I was trying to get a job interview. I was like, "Okay. Well, I'll go back into retail. I'll go to back to school. I'll be an accountant."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Good introvert job. Yeah.

Justin Weeder:
Right. Perfect for me, right? Data, don't have to sell to anybody. I'm like, "Selling is not my gig. It's not my thing. It's not for me. I don't like it. It's too much anxiety." Whatever excuses I told myself. So I'm in the Goodwill and I'm shopping for a suit, like a hand-me-down suit to go on an interview, and I look and I see a book on the shelf near the section. It's Sell Or Be Sold. And I was like, "That's interesting." So I walk over there and I pick it up and I start thumbing through it. And I'm like, "This is a different approach to selling." It's Grant Cardone, right? So Grant Cardone is still very in your face, but I'm like... I start reading some other stuff and it's like some ideas that really kind of made me nervous, but something just told me like, "Dude, just buy this book." I turned over. It was like two bucks. Like, all right, I can spare two bucks.

Fletcher Wimbush:
It's a good price.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah, exactly. So I took that thing home and I read it. I read it cover to cover probably five or six times.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Wow.

Justin Weeder:
And it really changed the way I looked at myself in terms of responsibility and it kind of resold me on selling.

Fletcher Wimbush:
So what was the biggest takeaway? I mean, what was the one thing after reading that book, you were like, just completely changed your... You said it changed how you thought, what was it?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. So it was where he says in the book at some, I don't remember what chapter, but he says, "Life doesn't happen to you, life happened because of you." And I didn't get it until like the fourth or fifth read through, because shortly after that he goes, "If you are in traffic, it's your fault." I'm like, "It's not my fault. It's traffic. I can't control traffic." It's like well yeah, you could have left earlier.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. You should've known, right? You should have anticipated or made a provision for it, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
I love that one. Yeah. In our world, assessments and teaching people to hire, have a core philosophy. I mean, there's personality fit for roles, there's competency, and competency is a wide and varying topic, but the glue that holds everything together is your attitude. And attitude a lot of times is that do I take responsibility for my own world or do I use behaviors to sort of hide from it, right? And the traffic scenario is a perfect one. I mean, to me, it falls into blame, right? Like it's not my fault, there was traffic. And it's a great example because it's something happens to all of us and every once in a while we all make a mistake and accidentally late because we didn't anticipate the traffic or there was a car accident. It's easy to say, "Well, there's some things I just can't control about that," but it's much harder to say to yourself, "You know what, it is my fault. I really should have planned for all the different contingencies, right?"

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Yeah. And it's a matter of not beating yourself up, but just saying, "Yeah, I could have done something different. I could have."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yep.

Justin Weeder:
Right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yep.

Justin Weeder:
That since then has opened so many doors for me because people appreciate it. It's so rare.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. That owning your own responsibility and who you are and what you do and taking responsibility for your actions. Yeah. It's a huge thing, man. We see it as far too often when people don't, right?

Justin Weeder:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Fletcher Wimbush:
And we see through it.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
How did you end up becoming a coach?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. So after I had that kind of reckoning, I went through a series of jobs that just kept escalating in responsibility, commission size, et cetera, till landed at this company as a... Start over. A FinTech company called iLendingDIRECT. And what we did is we helped people refinance their auto loans. And when I started there, I was like, "Man, I want to be a sales manager." So that was my goal, and eventually I made it there. I actually became the director of advanced training.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Wow.

Justin Weeder:
Because my process was so repeatable, they wanted me to teach it to everybody. Most of what I was teaching people was their mindset about how much inputs you need to get your outputs out, as most of what I was around and then also some advanced psychology and sales techniques and stuff.

Justin Weeder:
But after about six months of doing that job, I mean, as a company, we were crushing it. We were crushing goals every few months. And then the CEO decided that it would be a smart idea to change the way the managers were paid. So we were paid like a flat commission based on the production of the sales floor.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Get a piece of the pie.

Justin Weeder:
You get a piece of the pie, right, and you get a salary. So they decided to give us a less than 10% bump in salary and then make our piece of the pie contingent on hitting a goal, which on the surface when they first told us that I was like, "Oh, okay, cool. We'll crush goals. I'm fine with that. No worries." But then I saw the goals and it was like a 30 to 40% improvement year-over-year. I'm like, "Okay, but how are we going to do this?" And nobody gave me a good answer.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. It's up to you to figure it out.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. And I'm like, "Yeah, no. No, not what I signed up for." So I said, "You know what, you give me a bump in my salary to this much I'll stay. But if not, I can just get on that phone right over there and make what I was used to making and be fine."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah.

Justin Weeder:
Right. And so that's end up what I did, and I was really depressed after I did that because I wasn't really fulfilling myself. I was just doing something that comes naturally to me because I'd been doing it for three years at that point. And I had people coming up to me though that were struggling and they were like, "Hey dude, I really miss our one-on-ones. Can you coach me some more?"

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Found yourself coaching.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Exactly. I'm like, "Yeah, of course I can. Let's go." So yeah. So then it was can I really turn this into a business? And I found the online coaching world. I'm like, "Wow, I really can. This is cool."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Wow.

Justin Weeder:
So yeah, here I am.

Fletcher Wimbush:
All right. How long have you been coaching now?

Justin Weeder:
About three years now.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Awesome. Great. I love this. I love the fact that you're an introvert. So there's this misconception that salespeople have to be extroverts. And actually a lot of salespeople, as we know, are pretty heavily extroverted. They're very dominant, super expressive, they make friends with light poles, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And that is an important quality in sales, to be able to build rapport and to be able to put yourself out there and I think that's the reason why extroverts tend to go to sales, right?

Justin Weeder:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Fletcher Wimbush:
They're more willing to just put themselves out there. I mean, the beginning of your story is great, right? I'm a nerdy tech guy and I'm working in the computer repair center. And the last thing you want to do is go out on the floor and have to talk to customers, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
It's terrifying to you, by your nature, but the beauty of being an introvert is that you listen naturally and that's the cornerstone of your system. So to help us understand that, tell us more about this method.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. And so I developed the LISTEN method while I was working in Minnesota at another FinTech startup as the director of training. Well, we developed it as a team, but I needed to help these guys because a lot of them, they have Minnesota nice up there, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah.

Justin Weeder:
Typically that the archetype that does well in the auto finance world is not me, it's just like you described. It's the Di on the DiSC, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah.

Justin Weeder:
The dominate... yeah. And these folks, there were a couple of them that were that way, but most of them were not. Most of them were the complete opposite side and the steady conscientious side. And that's good for that job too. But I had to find a way to teach them how to sell like extended warranties and stuff in a way that was not abrasive and not confrontational.

Justin Weeder:
The last thing they want to do is get into a confrontation. And so I started listening to... We had a couple of people who were really, really good at it that were not super dominant and they never got into confrontations with people. So I started listening to their calls and I started thinking back on my own sales process. And I'm like, "Man, these guys are asking a lot more questions." And then I started thinking, "Okay, what questions are they asking?" They're asking for permission. They're asking what questions, they're asking why questions, they're asking how questions. So then I sat down and kind of codify that into a method where the first thing you do when someone gives you an objection is you ledge the objection. You throw them off balance a little bit to knock them out of their pattern so they can actually use their brain, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. Like why not, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Or like someone says, "Let me think about this." And see, this is where the introvert part of it comes in is because I probably know what the person really thinks because I've been listening to them and I've dealt with people just like them, we sells the same type of pool of customers. So I really know what they're probably thinking.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And you're probably-

Justin Weeder:
It's not that they want to think about it, it's that the price is too high.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. The nice way of saying no.

Justin Weeder:
It's a nice way of saying no. Yeah, exactly, and so if you call that out. What I learned is if you call it out to somebody and you say, "Hey, this isn't right for you, is it?" Now you just spilled the beans and then they actually will... Your rapport goes to the roof because they're like, "Oh, this guy knows me."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. He understands. Yeah. I always tell sales guys, "Go for the no."

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And they're like, "What are you talking about?" It's like, "Well, if they don't ever tell you no, then you have no chance of being able to understand why."

Justin Weeder:
Exactly. Exactly. Like maybes don't do it, man, and that's not your job. Your job is to get them to a decision. Yes or no, it doesn't matter just some kind of decision.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Exactly. Yeah. And if the ultimate answer is no, then that's great. You still did your job, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Yeah. It's still a win.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Exactly. I love that. And so I always feel like there's so many parallels between being a great salesperson and being a great interviewer. We call it the art of being curious because we spend a lot of time interviewing candidates, right? And it's the same thing. I mean, the people go into a job interview and they're on the defensive, just like a prospect is, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
So I walk into a car dealership and last thing I want to do is be bombarded by a bunch of salespeople and pushing me to take the next action or do anything. I want to just like check it out and like learn for myself, and I just want to understand about the car, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
And as an applicant, I really want this job or I have to fulfill this personal need. I mean, the reason why we work is to improve our quality of lives. I mean, that's the bottom line.

Justin Weeder:
That's the bottom line, yup.

Fletcher Wimbush:
What is my quality of life desires and what are yours? They're probably somewhat similar in some ways, but they're all going to have their nuances. They're going to be different in their own right, right? And so I'm trying to defend that, right? I'm on this defensive mode and I'm trying to get this job for a reason. Now, the interesting thing about interviewing is sometimes the candidates motivations aren't aligned very well with their own needs, right? The job is not a good fit for them, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Right. Totally. Oh my God.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And it's our job to either figure out whether it's a fit or not a fit, really to help them as much as it is to help us. And you're going to get those superficial answers from candidates when you start them questions, the first question you ever ask, and I think this is the same in sales, right?

Justin Weeder:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Fletcher Wimbush:
The first question is why do you want a new car? Well, my old car is... I just want something new, right? Well, that's a pretty superficial answer, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Like there's more to it than you just want something new, right?

Justin Weeder:
Right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
There's some emotional driver that's causing you to do that, right. So being able to continue to prod and to ask further questions. I mean, I think of it as even downright to the who, what, when and how questions. I mean, some of it... Understand the context, right? That's where some of the when and the who come involved, right? Who else is involved, but... So I mean, tell me more about what is your thoughts on that and how that happens. I mean, you've hired a bunch of salespeople, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. I've probably done over 500 interviews, so you're dead on. I think part of it is defining upfront. I mean, I go into consulting gigs sometimes where they're like, "We need to hire 40 salespeople." I'm like, "All right, cool. Who is it that you want?" They go, "We want salespeople." Like, "Cool. But what about those salespeople?" You know?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Exactly.

Justin Weeder:
And they don't know. And it's like, "Dude, you got to know." So you define that first and then you got to find out who that is. And you got to find out what that person believes about themselves, I found is the most important thing to discover. Who do they think they are?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. So how do you do that in an interview?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Good question.

Fletcher Wimbush:
I mean, if I just asked you that point blank, like who are you as a person, that's not going to go over very well.

Justin Weeder:
No, that's not going to go over very well. You can get one of those shitty superficial answers. Yeah. So I'll give you some questions I ask typically. One of my favorite questions to ask is true or false, the customer is always right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Okay. Well, I'd say true.

Justin Weeder:
Okay. Then I'd ask, "Why do you say that?"

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Well, because whatever that is motivating them in the situation is their reality. So I got to figure out, I got to try to understand that. I mean, otherwise I don't really know anything about them. But it's true to them, so it's true.

Justin Weeder:
Okay. That's fair. That makes sense to me. So how would you usually try to figure out more about that with them?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Well, I want to understand their perspective. So I want to try to continue to ask more questions to understand what's motivating that line of thinking, right? Like I need an SUV, I don't know. "Well, why? What about SUV is going to... Why is that a need for you?"

Fletcher Wimbush:
"Well, I've got two kids and I've got another one on the way."

Fletcher Wimbush:
"Oh, okay. Well, that's interesting, I mean, motivation. Most SUVs really are kind of just large cars. Is that really going to fit three kids? Maybe you need a suburban."

Justin Weeder:
So yes. Right, maybe you need a suburban, exactly.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Or minivan.

Justin Weeder:
Yes, exactly. That's the workings of a strong salesperson.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. I passed.

Justin Weeder:
Right? That's somebody... Yeah, you passed... Boom. We would continue the interview.

Fletcher Wimbush:
I've only spent my whole life in sales and I'm only a mediocre sales guy, I'll tell you that too. But I've definitely-

Justin Weeder:
All the good ones say that, by the way.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Oh, okay. Well, I spent a lot of time, like you, studying sales and sales best practices. And I think one of the things, one of my early mentors taught me is you got to practice, right?

Justin Weeder:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Fletcher Wimbush:
You got to do it over and over again. How do you teach somebody to be curious? Because I think it's really uncomfortable thing, especially for an extrovert. So I'm a super... I'm probably like on the exact opposite spectrum as you. I'm like the most extroverted person ever. And all I want to do is hear myself talk. I mean, if I hadn't been in the situation I've been in my life and practiced as much, I mean. How do you get to the point... Teach people to get to the point where they shut up and listen and ask good questions, because they can be really uncomfortable to ask?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. So I think you nailed it. The first part of it is, is practice and finding a way to make that practice fun. So when I'm teaching this to a sales team, we'll play improv games, like Yes And, or I'm Losing My Train Of Thought, or Something Borrowed, Something Blue, which is, which is a game where you have to ask a lot of questions. And so we'll do that, so they can kind of see what that looks like, and then how to transfer that to a call. We'll also, it depends on the DiSC type, but if I have like a heavy dominant person, it's easy. All I have to do is give them a goal. So if you leave a dominant person in alone, their goal is to get what they want, right?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yup.

Justin Weeder:
But if you give-

Fletcher Wimbush:
They're up to their own devices on it.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah, exactly. They'll usually probably find a way, but they'll be very heavy-handed and some customers don't like that, right? But if you give them a goal of like, "Hey, figure out this person's motivations. I need you to be able to tell me why they do exactly what they do when you get off the phone." Then you're tying them into that goal.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. Don't worry about closing them. I just want to know at the end of this call, what is their real true emotional motivation driver. And whatever the outcome is, don't worry about it.

Justin Weeder:
Exactly. Exactly.

Fletcher Wimbush:
If you can come back and explain it to me in detail. And that would be the same thing in hiring, right? If when you walk out of an interview, if you can explain, in detail, the motivations that person has and has had throughout their career to get them to where they're at, then, you're halfway there.

Justin Weeder:
Right. Yeah. Right. If you can sit down and tell that person or tell the other people in your org who you think that person is based on what they told you-

Fletcher Wimbush:
In detail.

Justin Weeder:
... and use examples in detail.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Cite evidence. That's a big piece of it, right?

Justin Weeder:
That's a big piece of it. Yeah. Well, I really try in hiring decisions not to go off feeling. Salespeople especially can make you feel however they want, right? You got to go and make sure this person aligns with who you want.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I find, especially with salespeople... In general, in interviews, a lot of times people give you these, I sold a million dollars worth of stuff at my last company. As an interviewer, a lot of times that might sound great. Well, geez. I want this guy to sell a million dollars. But there's a lot of context behind that, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Like what was your goal? Oh, it was $2 million. You came up short.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. That's a big miss. Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
That's a big miss, right? Well, why is the goal two million? Because there's different reasons. Well, I'm managing a book of business and that book of business historically has put in 1.8 million in revenue every year. So all I got to do is pick up the phone and take the order, but I got to add another $200,000. So yeah. If they missed the goal, they missed the goal. They obviously weren't pushing the envelope, right?

Justin Weeder:
Right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
So there's those little nuances that we forget to ask. We accept the superficial answer, like, "Oh, I need to think about it." Because that seems to make sense, oh I need to think about it.

Justin Weeder:
It does. Right. I would like to be able to think about it. Like it does, and that's where people get tripped up. I run into salespeople sometimes that go, "Oh, I don't have problems with objections." I'm like, "Oh, okay." So then I go listen to the call. I'm like, "Well, this is an objection."

Justin Weeder:
"Well, no, the guys just want me to email him some stuff."

Justin Weeder:
"Okay. Well that was two weeks ago. How did that email go over?"

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Have you got back on the phone? Did you close them?

Justin Weeder:
Right. Right. "Well he just, he just, he just..." Okay, well what about you? And then we get into that. But that's the whole thing is we think on the surface level, what would make sense for us? Just like you said, I want him to sell a million dollars for me. Yeah, but if he sold a million on the two million goal, he can't sell a million dollars for you, if that's exciting to you.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And if your goal is a million, but you're starting at whatever, right. You got to understand the who, what, when and how around the person's past experience, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yes. Yes.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. No, that's really good. So you're an introvert or introverted salesperson. I guess I'm curious, do you have a particular personality profile that you prefer to hire as salespeople or how do you do that? Or how do you convince introverts to be salespeople?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Great question. So yes and no. Okay. I used to, to tell you the truth. I used to.

Fletcher Wimbush:
You used to have a profile that you were-

Justin Weeder:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Fletcher Wimbush:
What was-

Justin Weeder:
I used to try to hire at the top. Di, dominated influencive. And those folks are great because they're the closest thing... I don't believe in natural salespeople. I think salespeople are made, but those people are as close as it gets to having the traits that would naturally make you successful in a sales role.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Sure. Yeah.

Justin Weeder:
But working with more and more people and kind of being put into positions where I can't just hire a team of Dis, I'm dealing with someone who's a steady conscientious, or I'm dealing with someone who's an architect, they're a DC, right? I'm dealing with those people. I've got to find their superpower and help. So that's what it's all about, is each DiSC has its own superpower. What I like to do is help them find that superpower and amplify it so that everything else doesn't matter.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Let them leverage it.

Justin Weeder:
Let them leverage it. Exactly. Like steady type people were people I used to hate to work with because I'm dominant. And so we're opposites. I was just, "I just don't understand you." But as I understand them more, I realized, "Hey, these folks have a really good intuitive feel on the other person's emotions." And when you really leverage that-

Fletcher Wimbush:
And they can ask good questions because of it, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Yes.

Fletcher Wimbush:
The best questions.

Justin Weeder:
The best questions. They know exactly where that person's at. So they may not be able to give a detailed write-up as to why the person not moving forward or why they need to move on from the lead, but they know and you can trust them.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. I love it. Yeah. And I think also you also have to look... I think you started talking about this, and I talk about this almost at every turn here. Whenever somebody comes to me and says, "Oh..." The same thing happens to us. We want to hire salespeople. Okay, great. What do you want to know about your salespeople? Is our first question, right? Or what makes a good salesperson in your organization? Or what makes a bad one, right? We begin to ask. We're in the business of assessing talent, so we have to understand what is the profile that we're looking for? What is the one that you least desire? And let's have a conversation. Or what is the job? I want to hire a salesperson. And then next thing you find out that it's kind of like an inside sales customer service type of job. It's a salesperson, but the calls are coming in and it's a very different approach than somebody you're going to put out on the street who's going to knock on doors, right?

Justin Weeder:
Definitely. Yeah. Yeah, you need a completely different personality profile, completely different goals, complete different income requirements. Those two people are going to want to make completely different money. Yeah, totally.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah, exactly. Yeah, exactly. So there'll be different qualities that ultimately that you want to hone in on, right? So yeah, that's really interesting. So how do you work with your clients to create that profile for people or to better understand their goals when they're hiring salespeople?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. That's a great question. So I usually ask them, "What kind of salesperson do you think is the most successful and why?" And then I'll go out and double check that against their existing salespeople.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Okay. And you sit, listen in or sell side by side with them?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Like I'll go-

Fletcher Wimbush:
Shadow them.

Justin Weeder:
I'll go shadow them, but I'll interview them, ask them questions and see. And if it's different, I come back and say, "So your top people are this way. You said you want this. Is there a good reason for that?" Sometimes there is.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. Maybe they're trying to transform their style or the way they're doing things, right? Or trying to add a... Yeah. Yeah. I can totally see that. Yeah. Yeah. And I think that's the key point that I think I want to make sure that people understand is that you've got to inspect and assess your own system and understand in what you might call like a benchmarking process, right? And a lot of times we turn that into like a scorecard. So we go through this exercise of inspecting what's working, what's not, what we're looking for, and why we're looking for it, and then identify what are the qualities that we're looking for in a person that would then match that.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And then you also have to go back and revisit that too, because we're making our best educated guess. I mean, if you don't have a whole population of salespeople to assess. For example, you're a smaller company, you're hiring your second salesperson or third salesperson, it's an educated guess at that point until you've proven it out, right?

Justin Weeder:
Right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Marketing drives me crazy. They're always like testing, testing, testing. And I also only hire introverts as marketers too, by the way.

Justin Weeder:
That's actually brilliant.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. The extroverted marketer is a bunch of trouble.

Justin Weeder:
He's all over the place.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah, they're all over the place. They're not so systematic. I mean, marketing is a systematic thing.

Justin Weeder:
It is.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Just like sales ultimately is, and that's, I guess, the difficulty we run into with those extroverts is teaching a system so that we actually follow them.

Justin Weeder:
Yes. That is probably the hardest part, is get into this system and be flexible, but follow the system though.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. It'll help you.

Justin Weeder:
It'll help you, I promise. Yeah.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah, exactly. Good. Well, hey, this has been great. So I always a couple of things... Three things that people can do tomorrow that will make an impact in their sales efforts and then something they can do in their hiring efforts.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. In your sales efforts, when you hear something that's vague, clarify it. Tell me more. How do you mean? Why do you say that? Don't let-

Fletcher Wimbush:
Same thing in hiring.

Justin Weeder:
Same thing in hiring. Exactly.

Fletcher Wimbush:
If you don't understand what they meant, ask more questions.

Justin Weeder:
More questions. Yes. And that will build your rapport. The more questions you ask of interviewee, the more open they become and more honest, they get with you. And the more questions that they've never heard before... That's the other thing is, ask them things they've never heard before. So I'll share, this is a line I actually got from Chet Holmes, but it works like magic.

Justin Weeder:
With a salesperson this is how you find the real superstars, at the end of the interview, no matter how well it went... This works even better if it went really well, you ask them... This is your word track. "Hey, so Fletcher, you seem like a really great person, man. You're very nice and super smart, but I only have one opening for this role," that has to be true. "And I need a real superstar. So while I'm sure that you do well in many different positions and areas, this is a very competitive industry. The job is really tough to learn and be good at. And after talking to you, I just doubt that your particular skills and personality are going to hold up. To be truthful, I just don't get the impression that you're really that superstar."

Fletcher Wimbush:
Okay. So you confront somebody like that.

Justin Weeder:
Yep.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And all right, what do you want them to say?

Justin Weeder:
I want them to ask questions.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Okay. Well, why do you think that, right?

Justin Weeder:
Perfect. Yep. Yep. Or like-

Fletcher Wimbush:
What have I not covered with you that makes you feel that way?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Yeah. Okay, well, this went really well, in my opinion. In your opinion, what's a superstar?

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Oh yeah. Could you describe what a superstar is in your opinion? Yeah.

Justin Weeder:
Right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
And this is great advice for job seekers too, right? If you're sitting there, you're about to get rejected, ask questions. You coach job seekers on this, ask them, "Well, what do you expect from somebody in this role?"

Justin Weeder:
Right. Right. Where did I miss?

Fletcher Wimbush:
How will you know if someone's successful?

Justin Weeder:
Oh, beautiful. That's a great question. Yeah. Yup.

Fletcher Wimbush:
I ask my clients that all the time, but I tell teams to ask the same exact question, right?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. Yeah. Because just like in sales, you've got to know how they're going to measure success.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. Yeah. If it's going to be about the number of doors I knock on, or is it about the amount of revenue I generate or whatever it is, right?

Justin Weeder:
Right. Right.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Customer feedback or whatever it might be, right?

Justin Weeder:
Right. Yeah. And if it's not something that, me, as a salesperson, as a job seeker that I want to align with, then cool, I've avoided that altogether.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. I love it. I love it. All right. Well, this has been great, Justin. Very interesting. I'm so glad we were able to connect. How can our audience get in touch with you?

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. You can find me on my website www.thecovertcloser.com or you can get me on Facebook. I'm Justin Mark on Facebook. M-A-R-K. And I have a sales... Or I have a Facebook group, it's like a mastermind for salespeople. It's free.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Oh, nice.

Justin Weeder:
Yeah. I do weekly... Excuse me, weekly book reviews there. And I've got a ton of free training in the unit section. So if you're a veteran or if you're new to sales, that's a great place to be. There's a ton of free stuff in there.

Fletcher Wimbush:
Yeah. That's awesome. Cool. Well, it's been great chatting with you. I will sign off here.