The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast
The Audible-Ready Sales Podcast

Episode · 5 years ago

Why the Best Salespeople Demonstrate Vulnerability

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Casey Jacox, President of Client Strategy & Partnerships at Kforce talks about why the concept of vulnerability can be an asset to a salesperson

Hello, thank you for joining us for this podcast. I'm Rachel Club Miller and I'm joined today by Casey J cooct. Casey is the president of Client Strategy and partnerships at K force. Casey, thanks for joining us well, thank you for having me. This is a very cool opportunity and I appreciate you taking the time to talk to me. Casey is a client and a familiar face to us, but he's also really passionate about sales and getting sales right in an organization. I am, and I'm actually a proud fourth force management customer, but when I think of sales, I think of authenticity, I think of people who have a high sense of our urgency, I think of people who are service oriented and one of the best things we got out of our relationship of force management was the art of practice, which we weren't doing, which is absolutely ridiculous when you think about it, and I think Kaplan was the one that John Kaplan was the one that said your customers deserve more, and practicing than your customers is just so disrespectful and so for us those days are gone and I can't say how exciting it is to be in an environment now we're we're practicing, often we're role playing. It's now part...

...of our culture. So thanks force management for that. Well, you're welcome. And people know Kapla by the last name. He's kind of like share, so Gondhi. That works okay. But I think all those are really great points when it comes to really getting sales right in the organization. And Casey, I know that you have been at K force for nearly eighteen years now, right, hard to believe. Yeah, and he we don't want to Brag on you too much, but I know that you have been one of the top performers, the top performer at K force. No one sold more in the company's history than you, and that's good for our listeners out there to know, because you know your stuff. But really your greatest success, I think we've had a lot of conversations about this, has really come from admitting what you don't know and you have gained a lot of value from admitting what you don't know throughout your sales career. Yeah, I mean I think I think it goes back to even my days of I'm not trying to be the Albundi here and talk about your collegiate football days, but the days...

...of playing quarterback and a day or a game right, we might win, I might have a great game statistically, but the the tending completions. I had my coach Bobaldwin, who's now the offensive coordinator at University California. He would just drill into US and and what? What? What did you do wrong? Why didn't you know what we're what read did you miss? And so that the art of always being coachable create a powerful sense of honor building me. And one of the one of the three words I love that aren't said enough in business that you guess, Rachel, Tell me, Casey, I don't know right, which I mean I don't know. Is The answer right? I'm not saying I don't know right to confuse our listeners. I don't know right. And it's so powerful and sometimes people look at the you know the phrase vulnerability as man, that that he's weak or she's weak, but vulnerability to me use of strength because it's you're not afraid to say, Hey, man, I don't know and I love to learn from you and be in be, be be taught something that I don't know, because it...

...can it can inspire a growth culture. It conspire a better, more team culture fit. It can inspire more environment where people aren't afraid to not know everything, which is a great caplain quote that I love and I say often, is he says it's okay not to know it, just not okay not to do anything about it, which is so powerful and I say it often and I make sure I give him credit because it's just such a really, really great, really great qut I think I love it. Transition to a quick story on Vollen Blad Rook, if I can. Yeah, go ahead please. So when we were so some of the companies that might go through your command of the message communt and sale. Training is is is awesome if you do it and and one of those things we have as a tthree, which is train the trainer, and I'm a tethree. There's fifteen of us at K force and we were going through our initial training to become trained. We Run Dallas and I was part of the initial team that kicked off our transformation. That felt good about it and we were with I got paired up with rate of Vilia and we were former college quarterbacks. He's a college football...

...coach. A lot in common. Felt like reviving and we get we get to my turn and I'm with Sandy Mari and my colleague and I and Andy Thomas are from our teams there and I go into my my my delivery of command of the message, and I go I do it reading good bye to language and rego's will. Case, I just think, I think did like what I thought it did. Okay, you know, I didn't want to be too confident, but I felt like I knew it. He's like, let me see your leader Guide, and the leader Guy, just for the listeners, is a book that kind of goes through the speaking notes so that we can make sure we had all the key points. And you know, Ray High Ray and John Encourage as the highlight highlight make notes story, transition points, and I did, but not to the level of detail I should have. And so I hands over to ray rays like well, where you're speaking notes? I'm like, well, there they right there in front of he's like, okay, where's your transition sites? The are the right there, he said, Casey, I don't see it. And what I've heard about you is that you're elite and if I'm being honest, that that performance...

...was nowhere nearly it was good and I'll pass you, but what I've heard about you is that you're elite. and to to there's two and I have two paths and the great book called the slide edge, if you ever want to read it. But path one is x, you know, bad word. Screw you, dude. Who Are you? I'm the best, the K first ever seen. Thank God I'm not that type of person. I loved it and it felt so good to get coached and it felt so good get called out. So fast forward of that night. We are at we get down the day and the team want to go off for grab a beer I'M gonna go back to my room because I have some things I got to get done. And from eight thirteen till eleven in front of the Mirror. It would have been so embarrassed seeing if the housekeeping came in, I'm literally presenting to myself in the Mirror on command of the sale, and there was no, not a chance. And you know what that the next day ray was going to say I was an elite and I was so ready to go. And then that morning, fast forward the morning. Thankfully, it went well and Ray said, that's what I expect out of yet and just to be able to tell that story to my own internal team. That definitely think...

I inspired some other folks, and there's any top performers listening out there. The one I want piece of advice that Giveya is always be coachable and we always can get better every day and the only thing that makes you good about today is today and tomorrow you got to go out and someone else's respect. That's great. I love that and I think you you kind of set it up a little bit there about how this kincept of vulnerability or admitting what you don't know relates to salespeople out there and you know your kind of your story. Talked about how it might relate to a manager or coach, but this concept also works for your daytoday. Rat totally. Well, there's three things that come to mind. If you think about the will called the season drop. The Season Rep goes out on a meeting, a client visit, and he or she comes back and they the team goes to the manager, goes how to go killed. It told him everything about our company. Well, great, would you learn? Huh? I told me everything about our company. Well, in the end that's that goes back to hold, you know, command of messages, discovery. It's all about discovery and so being vulnerable...

...to say you know, when you know you might not know everything on that meeting or you might forget to ask something that meeting. It's okay to's fallot. The clients say hey you, Mr Mr Mrs Customer, I know I really appreciate your time that we spent talking about topic a, but I messed up and I forgot to ask you two questions, hoping to get two more minutes your time or send a fall beam of it. That articulates what you did and I've found over time customers appreciate that. They appreciate the extra level of detail. More importantly, think about the younger reps, that the three to six month person. This is what the structure of the Valley base framework really tought helped me teach others, is the young reps are so scared to mess up. They just they're fresh out of school, they're intimidated, they don't want to mess up and if they can see senior folks, proven folks that still show that vulnerability and the humility to say it's okay to mess up, I think and again goes back to what I said earlier, it really can inspire that culture of it's okay to mess up, which is not okay...

...do nothing about it, to kill Kaplan. And lastly, the most powerful thing it part of the in command of sale is medic which is an acronym that that you guys obviously taught us around ensuring, through opportunity qualifiers, uncover every gap possible and make sure that there's if I'm going to lose a deal, I want to look know what I'm going to what or why I'm going to lose early, so that I don't get to the end of the sales process and I'm surprised by four or five things because I didn't have the I had had the the ego to not want to take me to that spot of saying I don't know. So those would be three, three key points I'd say on why it relates to to sales people. Yeah, medic is a great way to show some, I say, poke holes in your qualification, but also point out the vulnerability of what you think you got you in your pipeline. But I think this this concept of vulnerability, and we've touched on in here, but it really can be. This a powerful tool in leadership, especially when it comes to giving feedback. For example, when we teach...

...feedback, we always teach the coach to ask for feedback on his or her coaching as well. Yeah, I love that. I love this. This is something we're we're doing every time, every meeting. I even ask customers. I mean that's I'm not being afraid to ask customers in the in the thing you guys taught us, you guys being first management, give to take to give me two things that had great, give me two things that could have done differently. And when Kaplin delivered his two day presentation to us, which was off the charts good, it was a lead and to hear Chelsea or Gen Templeton or Tim Kato here that his first thing he said was, hey, give me two things I did great, two things that could have done from that's when you see guys like John, who's so successful. He I feel like he kind of has the same thought process. I'm successful today and he still wants to get coached. And that I mean as a testament to your guys, this culture. It's a testament to everybody I met that you guys all have that humble nature about you that you want to get better.

So you know, it's a very, very basic way to implement it. But just give to take to every meeting and the more that the senior people adopt it that I think it will help drive adoption for the younger reps, maybe the younger leaders, but the more that they see it happening, I think the more benefit and val you're going to get out of it. Yeah, it's a great reminder. Give gift to take two. And as we're talking about humility, I want to bring up this is force management's podcast on the road show. I'm actually sitting in the K force offices in Seattle and I walked in your office and saw a great sign on the door. Why don't you tell the listeners? Flicks there? Yeah, so when we recently moved four months ago and our Ministry of Operation, the team wanted to put my name on the door and I just felt like I that's I don't that's way too much EGOMANIAC and for those that have your names on the office, I'm not being disrespectful, I just couldn't do it. So, in the spirit of fun, which is a core value of ours, I have the the name Bushwood Country Club, and so those that are caddy check fans, there's the theme to my office. As I look to the right,...

...there's someone standing right behind Rachel's we speaking. There's a video camera. It would be awesome for you see, because Thaie web, played by Chevy Chase, is standing right in front of me, a six foot one cardboard cutout. It's kind of freaking Rachel a little bit, but she's done a good job of kind of hanging this right. So so be humble and you don't need to take it too seriously. So, Casey, while we wrap here up here, what's the bottom line? What's the challenge we for people when it comes to this concept? We talked about gifts you take to but what what would you challenge people to do that are listening to this concept? I think. I think bottom line your senior folks. You're the senior the senior individuals in any company. You, you guys, are the ones that set the tone and the more humility and more vulnerability they see from you will help drive adoption. And there's a great quote that we got from our command of message training by Ron Willingham, who wrote a Book Integrity Selling for the twenty one cent when he says the art of persuasions is stated as the art persuasion is a paradox. The more we attempt to persuade people, the more they...

...tend to resist us, but the more we tempt to understand great value for them, the more they tend to persuade themselves. And I've said that quote Rachel, so many times, literally, I don't even numerous times, every day since we went through Commund of the message with force management and with regards to to vulnerability. I think if you try to enforce people to do it, to show that vulnerability and they're not going to get it. But if you ask questions in a way that they understand the value for them, they're going to convince themselves and need to be more vulnerable. So I would be the bottom that I leave you with today. Awesome. Thank you so much, Casey. Thank you. Thank you to all of you for listening. Don't forget to subscribe to our podcast and itunes and Google play.

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