sales advice

Confession: McDonald’s is my favorite restaurant

They are not paying me to write this.

McDonald’s is my favorite restaurant and here’s why:

The food is delicious. I know it’s not healthy for me, and I only eat there once or twice a month, but the food tastes amazing. Granted, if you overeat, you’ll vomit, but if you just have a cheeseburger (tell them to add lettuce & tomato), small fries and a coke, you won’t get sick, you’ll spend oh about $3.50 and you’ll get an amazing meal.

If you want, you can eat healthy at McDonald’s. I sometimes order the bacon ranch salad with grilled chicken and it also tastes freakin’ amazing.

Every store is already remodeled or they are going through one which means they aren’t the McDonald’s from the 90’s. The bathrooms are almost always clean and they serve you with a smile.

If you don’t like McDonald’s, guess what? You don’t have to go there. Go to Chick-Fil-A. I like Chick-Fil-A too, I just prefer McDonald’s.

McDonald’s are everywhere. I’ve been to McDonald’s in Europe and China and the food was fantastic there too. In China, they sell spicy wings…..oh my god, they are so good. They skimp on the ketchup in Switzerland, but that might be in my head.

The reason I bring up McDonald’s is that consistency will gain you customers for life. Always provide the best and same service to every customer and it will pay off in the long-term.

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401K – Common Sense Advice

Sign up for your 401K at work, get yourself a Roth IRA, and make sure you’re saving at least 10% in 2019 with a goal of 15% in 2020 and 20% beyond that.

My 41 year old self is thanking my 31 year old self for saving and now I’ve technically become a millionaire. Most of my money is tied up in 401K’s and my equity in my house, but I’m there.

I would not have gotten there if I didn’t save.

I also could’ve saved a lot more. A LOT MORE.

sales advice

Why you need to hand-deliver your proposal

How long does it take you to get a proposal for any sort of work you want done at your house? My experience is that if you call 5 people, 3 will call you back, 2 will show up, and only 1 will give you a proposal.

Who do you think gets the job?

That’s why it’s so important to get back to your customers as soon as you can, and, if possible, hand deliver the proposal. When you do this, you are building a relationship and you are giving the customer the opportunity to provide you feedback.

When you meet with someone in person, it shows them you want the business and it immediately starts to develop that relationship where they trust you.

Try hand-delivering your proposals and let me know what your win rate is compared to the ones you don’t.

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How to Simplify Your Life Financially

Early last year I decided I wanted to simplify my financial life. I had a bunch of bills and felt like, while I was making good money on paper, I didn’t have a lot (or any) left at the end of the month.

First I cut out my lawn guy at $60/mow. He would mow my lawn roughly every 10 days from mid-April to November….20 or 21 times. That’s approximately $1200/yr saved. I’m now on my second year of mowing my lawn myself and will have saved $2400 by the end of this mowing season.

Next I sold my truck, boat, and airplane and bought a ‘98 Acura as a beater. I’m not sure this was a good idea, but I sold my truck for $6500 and bought my beater for $1000. I’d rather have my truck but I did use some of that money to invest in my children’s 529 college plan.

I really enjoyed owning an airplane, but the honeymoon had worn off and a 40 year old airplane is a money pit.

The boat was just stupid.

I got rid of Netflix but that only lasted a few months. I have it back now, but we haven’t had cable since 2006 and we don’t miss it.

I also got rid of an old refrigerator through the power company. It was using $5-$10 month of electricity, but West Penn Power took it away for free and gave me a $50 check for it. Nice!

I also feel that term life insurance is extremely important and while this added to my expenses, an additional $500K policy for $36/month is must-do for every husband. Get 10-12 times your annual income in term life.

Just getting rid of stuff is an amazing feeling. Some stuff I sold and other stuff I simply gave away. Having less stuff frees you and it feels great.

What are you doing to simplify your life?

My former plane
sales advice

How to deal with competitors

I used to hate my competitors. I absolutely loathed them. They were taking money out of my pocket…how dare they???!?!??

A few years ago, one of my coworkers went to go work for the competition and I was stunned. How could they? They were the enemy! We talked about it and it turned out Greg got any opportunity he had been waiting years for…it just so happened it was with a different company.

Greg explained to me why he made the decision and a light bulb went off in my head.

I had prided myself on my loyalty and loved my company, but it was eye opening for a naive boy from Pittsburgh.

I realized then, that instead of looking at competitors with contempt, I should, rather, admire them for what they’ve been able to accomplish and in ways that they are better than me.

Every company has issues…it’s how you deal with those issues that sets you apart from the pack.

The next time your competition beats you…don’t get mad. Instead use it as a learning experience and work on becoming better yourself.

sales advice

To Sell More….Talk Less

Almost every sales person I’ve ever met talks a lot. I don’t just mean a lot, I mean they talk too much.

In sales, the customer wants to be the focus of the deal. The customer wants to be the focus of the conversation. The customer wants to be the focus of the relationship. When a sales person comes in and all they do is talk about themselves, it turns off the buyer. BECAUSE, it’s not about you! It’s about them!

Think about your last buying experience and think about a sales pro that really made you feel good about yourself. Was it because they told you what they had for dinner last night? Or how many countries they’ve been to? Or was it because they asked you questions and were honestly, genuinely, interested in you?

I don’t have the gift of gab. I don’t talk too much. Quite frankly, there are times when I don’t talk enough. But I’m genuinely interested in other people’s lives and experiences to where I have an easy time building and fostering relationships. It’s not because I don’t talk too much, but that helps. It’s because I want to know my customer’s likes and dislikes, cares and worries, what they do for fun, and how I can serve them.

If you want to sell more, you need to learn to talk less, listen more, and have a genuine interest in your customer’s life, goals, and company.