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EXECUTION Many of the TOP 100 forbes billionaires had the same first job... have a guess

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MakeItHappen

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The first job of most billionaires was... drum-roll... SALES!

Not a big surprise to many I guess.
Many very successful people recommend to learn sales as soon as possible, including many on this forum.

I have to admit that I didn't spend any time honing my sales skills... mostly to stay comfortable or to be more precise to avoid my fears...
... yep my fears because to be honest I am scared as hell to sell, to cold call, to get rejected.

Running away from my irrational fears for years has been a disservice to myself and my family.
Even in this very moment I get an uncomfortable feeling.
I want to delete this post.
I don't want to publish it, so I can stay in my comfort zone without feeling any accountability or risk loosing my face.

But f*ck IT!
I don't want to keep living a life of quiet desperation.
When my life will be over I want to be proud of myself, not embarrassed.

The last couple years I have been working from home with pretty much no need for any social interactions.
As an introvert I enjoyed it but my comfort zone has gotten smaller and smaller.
At the moment I am even uncomfortable making phone calls to get medical appointments or any appointment for that matter.

I guess cold calling will be fun...

Which brings me to the point of this thread. I want to document my journey in sales.
I haven't yet a clear plan, actually I can't even see me really taking action on this...
However, there were a couple of valueable threads on the forum about "cold calling challenges" which gave me inspiration.

I want to make taking action as simple as possible for myself, so I thought about making cold calls/cold visits as a freelancer on a comission only basis.
Then just take action, and keep taking action until there is no fear left and my sales skills have improved massively.

I will follow up with a more concrete action plan.


“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.” by Abraham Maslow


source for the first statement of the thread: https://eu.usatoday.com/story/money/2017/09/21/billionaire-richest-people-first-jobs-top-degress/686886001/
 

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Santi M

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Great! Let's do it @MakeItHappen

Can I ask what is your "business", like, what will you sell in the cold calling exactly or... what do you do?
 
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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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Great! Let's do it @MakeItHappen

Can I ask what is your "business", like, what will you sell in the cold calling exactly or... what do you do?
Hi @Santi Merino,
thanks for checking out my thread.

I will not sell my own product or services. However, if I find some success in selling I most certainly will start selling something I own as a next step.

As I have some background in digital marketing, and because there are a lot of businesses that have a need for it, I thought about selling services in this industry.

I made a list of a couple businesses in my area and will check if they are interested in paying me a commission for warm leads.
 

Santi M

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I made a list of a couple businesses in my area and will check if they are interested in paying me a commission for warm leads.
Good, I wish you the best of lucks!

By the way, my humble advice is START FOR FREE, don't start asking for money, first do it for free, and if they like it sure they'll pay you, but I think doing the first time (at least) for free can make it easier to start.
 
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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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Good, I wish you the best of lucks!

By the way, my humble advice is START FOR FREE, don't start asking for money, first do it for free, and if they like it sure they'll pay you, but I think doing the first time (at least) for free can make it easier to start.
Thank you!

I like your advise. The easier it is to take action the better. Things can always improved, added and removed along the way.
 

Dianne Cohen

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Sep 7, 2018
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I have made a lot of cold and warmish calls in the last couple of years. I cannot say that I love it, but it is not nearly as painful as I thought it would be. And sometimes it is actually fun. I like to have small goals each day to look for while calling. For example, get 2 email addresses Or make one appointment. This is a popular one in my former industry. On average, you need 20 NO's to get a YES. You get the point. Good Luck and feel free to message me if I can help.
 
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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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I have made a lot of cold and warmish calls in the last couple of years. I cannot say that I love it, but it is not nearly as painful as I thought it would be. And sometimes it is actually fun. I like to have small goals each day to look for while calling. For example, get 2 email addresses Or make one appointment. This is a popular one in my former industry. On average, you need 20 NO's to get a YES. You get the point. Good Luck and feel free to message me if I can help.
Hi Dianne,
thanks for checking out my progress thread and thanks for your feedback.
Yup, I think chunking down your goals into tidbits is very helpful.

I read that many salespeople know how much they earn on avg. per call/visit.
So, no matter what the outcome of the individual interaction, the salepeople can preceive it as a success, as progress.

Sales is an art form, like any art it is only birthed through practise.

Pro Tip :
I got better at sales by advertising online, Advertisements honed my copywriting skills and subconsciously enhanced my speech.
Hi ManlyMansNegator,
thank you for your tip!
Luckily I have studied copywriting a little bit in the past, so I am not starting at 0, but I still have a lot to learn.
"Copywriting is salemanship in print" is a phrase that comes to mind.

A little practice that has helped me to get a feel for copywriting was the daily reading and rewriting of control packages.
Maybe I should restart that practice to get more of a feel for it again.

Sales is a great skill and I wish you the best in learning it and using it to your advantage.
I got one question though: why do many people push others to start cold calling as a way to learn sales?
As I have literally zero experience in sales I don't have an answer. I haven't made a single cold call in my life till now, lol.

Another way is I prospect clients before approaching. I wouldn't consider this method cold, because by opening their shops they automatically became a warm client. I mean I know that food retailers would be more willing to consider buying my food product than let's say a pharmacy.
Well, then I won't be cold calling I guess.
I plan to prospect and only call people I honestly expect to profit from the service I am selling.
example:
- shitty website with bad search engine rankings -> great looking, sales- & seo-optimized website
- website on the 2nd page of google -> seo or adwords services

This obv. doesn't mean that the prospect will agree that he needs the service, but my intention to fill a need and solve a problem is the basis for contacting businesses.

I believe people should spend more time learning more aspects of sales such as listening, helping people, looking for providing real value not irrelevant value, making relationships with people who will be interested in your products, rather than just learning the "pushy, aggressive and spray until you hit" way of selling.
As I am a big time introvert I can't see myself as being pushy or aggressive, even if it would be lucrative to act like it. It just isn't in my DNA.
Even in my social life usually I am 20-30% talking and 70-80% listening. In bigger groups it's more like 99% listening, haha.

ATM I am reading a book called "The Introvert's Edge", which teaches an approach for selling that is naturally suitable for introverts, we will see.

Sorry for the rant you can see I just hate cold calling. Keep doing it if it works for you, it just didn't with me.
No problem, like I said I haven't made a cold call in my life... yet.
 

Bourbons

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Sales is a great skill and I wish you the best in learning it and using it to your advantage.
I got one question though: why do many people push others to start cold calling as a way to learn sales?

I hate cold calling. I never wanted to use cold calling in order to make sales. I hate people who call me through the phone wanting me to let them in my house to eventually sell me a vacuum cleaner when I already got one. I hate how they try to relate to me in a fake way so I will then be more lenient to buying it.

I hated embarrassing people over the phone with the awkward silence for them to start apologising for not wanting to hurt my feelings by saying no they don't want my services (when I was selling to others).

There is a lot more I hate about cold calling which I'm not going to keep listing here.

Every time I sold products I did it by finding people who wanted the product I sold.
One way was advertising on the internet, and whoever puts in his e-mail/number or calls my phone, then he wants it. Whoever doesn't then he doesn't. We're all adults lol why do I have to annoy people to buy my products (it works on the short-term sometimes).

Another way is I prospect clients before approaching. I wouldn't consider this method cold, because by opening their shops they automatically became a warm client. I mean I know that food retailers would be more willing to consider buying my food product than let's say a pharmacy.

I believe people should spend more time learning more aspects of sales such as listening, helping people, looking for providing real value not irrelevant value, making relationships with people who will be interested in your products, rather than just learning the "pushy, aggressive and spray until you hit" way of selling.

Sorry for the rant you can see I just hate cold calling. Keep doing it if it works for you, it just didn't with me.
Not very constructive, I believe, as it's a very valid route to market for some products, extremely low overheads, and million (maybe billion?) £/$ companies are built on it.

It's a scary thing to do, for the reasons you list - but fact is that many people are receptive, and done correctly rejection doesn't hurt too badly.

That's too emotional a reason for me, I'll take any route to market that works for the product.
 

Yzn

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Jul 1, 2018
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Not very constructive, I believe, as it's a very valid route to market for some products, extremely low overheads, and million (maybe billion?) £/$ companies are built on it.

It's a scary thing to do, for the reasons you list - but fact is that many people are receptive, and done correctly rejection doesn't hurt too badly.

That's too emotional a reason for me, I'll take any route to market that works for the product.
Actually after I posted the comment I re-read it and found it more.emotional than practical. I do take.back my comment. Still not a way I prefer to do business but it is still essential skill as you said in many businesses around the world. :thumbsup:
 

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mdivljina

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I too just started cold calling yesterday! To expand my comfort zone, but also to get clients for my new business. I'm applying the @Andy Black method of "coffee and diesel" (you can read it here). Basically I do one cold call a day (100% increase than before haha) and I offer various local business owners an hour of my time to teach them lead gen online (for free) without a sales pitch in the end. Called the first one, he said okay fine we can set up a meeting!
Right now, I just feel like it's important to be genuine when cold calling and offer them real value instead of making an ask.
 

Andy Black

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I too just started cold calling yesterday! To expand my comfort zone, but also to get clients for my new business. I'm applying the @Andy Black method of "coffee and diesel" (you can read it here). Basically I do one cold call a day (100% increase than before haha) and I offer various local business owners an hour of my time to teach them lead gen online (for free) without a sales pitch in the end. Called the first one, he said okay fine we can set up a meeting!
Right now, I just feel like it's important to be genuine when cold calling and offer them real value instead of making an ask.
Cool!!! Well done getting one hour a business owner's time. They value their time highly.
 
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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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Update:
I am in contact with a business that is interested in working with me.
We haven't yet discussed all the details, but for me that's a nice start.

In terms of cold calls... I have procrastinated by telling myself bullshit and damn I listened to myself. I saw it coming and still did fall for it...

I have created a (way to detailed) cold call script (part of procrastination).
However, for the first calls I will now use a super simple and probably not very good script.
I don't care for now. It's just about picking up the phone and getting a couple of no's.

After the first couple of cold calls I can look into improving parts of the script and making it more advanced but atm I just need it to be as simple and short as possible.

Anyways, today I will finally make my first cold call.

I too just started cold calling yesterday! To expand my comfort zone, but also to get clients for my new business. I'm applying the @Andy Black method of "coffee and diesel" (you can read it here). Basically I do one cold call a day (100% increase than before haha) and I offer various local business owners an hour of my time to teach them lead gen online (for free) without a sales pitch in the end. Called the first one, he said okay fine we can set up a meeting!
Right now, I just feel like it's important to be genuine when cold calling and offer them real value instead of making an ask.
Awesome! Way to go! How have the calls since your post gone?
 

babyballer

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Good, I wish you the best of lucks!

By the way, my humble advice is START FOR FREE, don't start asking for money, first do it for free, and if they like it sure they'll pay you, but I think doing the first time (at least) for free can make it easier to start.
I am in sales and I have NEVER ever work for free.
 
Last edited:

Andy Black

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emsi2

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Apr 15, 2019
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The first job of most billionaires was... drum-roll... SALES!

Not a big surprise to many I guess.
Many very successful people recommend to learn sales as soon as possible, including many on this forum.

I have to admit that I didn't spend any time honing my sales skills... mostly to stay comfortable or to be more precise to avoid my fears...
... yep my fears because to be honest I am scared as hell to sell, to cold call, to get rejected.

Running away from my irrational fears for years has been a disservice to myself and my family.
Even in this very moment I get an uncomfortable feeling.
I want to delete this post.
I don't want to publish it, so I can stay in my comfort zone without feeling any accountability or risk loosing my face.

But F*ck IT!
I don't want to keep living a life of quiet desperation.
When my life will be over I want to be proud of myself, not embarrassed.

The last couple years I have been working from home with pretty much no need for any social interactions.
As an introvert I enjoyed it but my comfort zone has gotten smaller and smaller.
At the moment I am even uncomfortable making phone calls to get medical appointments or any appointment for that matter.

I guess cold calling will be fun...

Which brings me to the point of this thread. I want to document my journey in sales.
I haven't yet a clear plan, actually I can't even see me really taking action on this...
However, there were a couple of valueable threads on the forum about "cold calling challenges" which gave me inspiration.

I want to make taking action as simple as possible for myself, so I thought about making cold calls/cold visits as a freelancer on a comission only basis.
Then just take action, and keep taking action until there is no fear left and my sales skills have improved massively.

I will follow up with a more concrete action plan.


“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.” by Abraham Maslow


source for the first statement of the thread: https://eu.usatoday.com/story/money/2017/09/21/billionaire-richest-people-first-jobs-top-degress/686886001/
Good luck @MakeItHappen! I think that looking at fears in the eyes is never a bad choise!
 
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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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Good luck @MakeItHappen! I think that looking at fears in the eyes is never a bad choise!
Thanks man!

Update:

So I have made my first cold call ever. yey

Actually I have made 4 calls so far.

Calls made: 4
Connects: 4
Decision maker reached: 2
Meetings scheduled: 0
Sales closed: 0

For now I am only concerned about ACTION.
 

emsi2

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Apr 15, 2019
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Thanks man!

Update:

So I have made my first cold call ever. yey

Actually I have made 4 calls so far.

Calls made: 4
Connects: 4
Decision maker reached: 2
Meetings scheduled: 0
Sales closed: 0

For now I am only concerned about ACTION.
Good job! Keep it up! :)
 

rynor

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Congratulations on taking this first step. I, myself, am also an introvert and the thought of cold calling scares me to death. Your thread has inspired me to rethink this a bit and jump out of my comfort zone more. The worst thing that will happen is they'll hang up or tell you they're not interested.

I hope you find great success in doing this, I'll keep an eye out.
 

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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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Good job! Keep it up! :)
Thank you @emsi2 !

I hope you find great success in doing this, I'll keep an eye out.
Thank you! The biggest success was the first time I picked up the phone and made a cold call.
The calls after that don't feel that much easier but my self-image changed!
You know that the next calls might suck just as much as the first one but you now know for sure that you can handle overcoming the fear because you have done it before.
I know it might sound funny because it's just a phone call but irrational fear can feel very real, lol.

Congratulations on taking this first step. I, myself, am also an introvert and the thought of cold calling scares me to death. Your thread has inspired me to rethink this a bit and jump out of my comfort zone more. The worst thing that will happen is they'll hang up or tell you they're not interested.
Whatever your fear, cold calling, public speaking, fear of failure.
Facing it gives you power (and an insane dopamine rush ;) ).

And just as important, it shows you that it's all about your MINDSET.

Who knows where we would be in life if we would have a proper mindset, if we would just face our fears heads on (before you can do that you also have to acknowledge your fears, I could have told be that cold calling is just an outdated selling technique so why even bother doing something "stupid" like this...).

We would probably all have achieved our goals already.

The funny thing is, I have read books about taking action and facing your fears... YEARS AGO.
And they didn't make a difference.

What finally made a difference were 2 things:
1. Creating accountability -> via this progress thread
2. Applying this mantra -> Just **** Do It
 

JPMorgan

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I believe sales is the LAST profession to ever be taken over by AI.

To all who are making cold calls for their business, I HIGHLY suggest Mojo dialer. It’s a triple line auto dialer with a built in CRM I use for prospecting that is very effective. It allows you to literally get through MASSIVE lists of leads without having to hand dial, or listen to that annoyinng ring while waiting. Don’t want to write notes on each conversation/ contact? Mojo has a built in cal recording feature for your peace of mind. Put all your leads into an excel spreadsheet, upload the list into mojo, and start cranking!

Also, I recommend a stand up desk. To increase mood while prospecting. Turn on some music, smile, and just wait until someone answers! Lol this allows you to get really good results.

After going through a solid amount of leads, ALL data is tracked from # of dials, to # of contacts, to # of leads. You will now know your Key Performance Indicators and how many #s you have to dial to get a Contact / Lead.

Hope this helps anyone! This is a massive gold nugget to anyone who cold calls for business.
 
D

Deleted52409

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As someone who has done lots of cold calling, if you are able to record your calls that would help immensely. Then you can listen to everything and see where it all went wrong/right/could be improved in the conversation.
 
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MakeItHappen

MakeItHappen

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Thank you guys!

Also, I recommend a stand up desk. To increase mood while prospecting. Turn on some music, smile, and just wait until someone answers! Lol this allows you to get really good results.
Nice, I already use a stand up desk.

As someone who has done lots of cold calling, if you are able to record your calls that would help immensely. Then you can listen to everything and see where it all went wrong/right/could be improved in the conversation.
I can record the calls. Thanks for the tip. I expect to sound a lord worse on the recordings than I feel about myself while calling, haha.


I just got of the phone with an agency owner.
He is interested but has to talk to the second owner of the agency.
 

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