🎙️ Transcript: The Top 3 Ways to Stay Psyched and Focused on Your Success

🎙️ Transcript: The Top 3 Ways to Stay Psyched and Focused on Your Success

The Brutal Truth About Sales and Selling Podcast
"The Top 3 Ways to Stay Psyched and Focused on Your Success"
Brian Burns, Ralph Barsi
February 13, 2019

🎧 Listen on YouTube

Brian Burns:
Hey everybody. Welcome to this episode of "The Brutal Truth About Sales and Selling Podcast."

Today we're going to be talking about something that we don't talk about that often, kind of that inner game. How do you build up and prevent the things that we know are going to happen emotionally to us in sales?

Now, have you ever had a bad day, a down day? We all have, and a lot of us are getting down weeks, down months, down quarters, down years, and that's really preventable.

We have to prevent it because repairing it takes a long time. If you have a bad quarter, it's going to take you probably at least another quarter to get back on track.

But if every day, day you invest it just a minute to five minutes, getting your mindset, getting your process down, getting your why, your level of gratitude to reinforce that, and we don't do it because we're lazy, and it's not even that we're lazy.

It's just that we're not in pain that naturally. As human beings, what do we do? We respond to reduce pain, increase pleasure. That's the way we are.

We're not good at thinking ahead beyond our next meal, our next rest, our next whatever. We're not good at that. Why? Because we've got millions of years of evolution in our little brains that aren't good for that.

A great example is saving for retirement. This is what kills people. How many people in their twenties want to put money away for 40 years? Let's see. Go to a party or put the money away for 40 years, go on vacation or save it to when I'm 60. Nobody, very few people do that unless it's ingrained in you from your parents.

We just don't think that far ahead. We are a hand-to-mouth creature. That's the way we are, but the real investment that we make in ourselves and how to prevent these real hitting the wall as a rep, now it's okay to have a bad day.

We get rejected all the time. How quickly can we recover? How resilient can we be? Now, some of us might be naturally good at that. Some of us might have already good habits, good physical, good nutrition, good mental habits already in place. But how about if you don't, do you build that up?

We're going to talk about that today from a sales leader, kind of not some new age person, but we're going to be sharing stories about how we've evolved.

Now, I'm building this into the Year of Excellence because it's critical. And I've seen two kind of sales kind of popular people on LinkedIn in the last two years who have had mental breakdowns, and I'm like, well, and they give their story. And I'm like, yeah, that was hard. It was, but it shouldn't have knocked you out for six months to a year.

It just shouldn't. I'm not trying to be callous, but I think we all as human beings are going to hit these things either professionally or personally. We're going to lose loved ones. We're going to get trapped up with drugs or alcohol. We're going to get distracted by shiny objects and we're going to lose our way.

But how do we keep on our journey, our journey to sales excellence, which gives us the life that we want? We have to build it into our daily routine. We have to prevent those things that can happen from happening by making tiny little investments in our little piggy bank of optimism life, our why, our level of gratitude, our control over our emotions, and realize that we have that control.

Now, we're going to get into it in the interview. I don't talk about this enough because maybe it's just me.

I kind of had that from an early age. I worked when I was in high school. I worked full-time and went to college at full-time at night. I had it. I don't know why. I always had this desire to be independent, so it kind of pulled me through. I had a why, but during the days, I would have the rollercoaster.

Someone would hang up on me and I had an outlet I'd go running at lunchtime, and that would always clear my head. But I've, we've all had bad times and we all kind of overlook that investment of our mindfulness, keeping our optimism, keeping our perspective on what is temporary versus what is permanent.

And what I want to do is just kind of share what other people are doing. We each have to find our own little way of doing it. And I think the easiest way is to just commit to one minute a day of something, build a list.

I talk about what I do in this episode, and then build from there. Because if we don't prevent it, we're going to be repairing. And in both of these cases, these two people, it was six months to a year to repair. I'm like, holy smokes.

Neither of them would I have considered tragic. I think they were certainly obstacles. Obstacles that I've seen a lot of people get over in less than a month or a week. But I think if you don't have that fortitude, that skillset of how to manage it, we just can't do that.

You don't want to do that because we are going to face tough times, and this is the time of year where our territories get sliced up, we get a new comp plan, we get the reality of our new commission rate. All of this stuff does kind get in our way and becomes an obstacle.

So I have Ralph Barsi back on the show. He was back on about a year ago. Super successful sales leader. Kind of a rare bird as far as a sales leader.

And we talk about that a little bit, and I get his perspective because I never climbed that high in an organization. I was always a rep or a first level manager back and forth during many different startups.

Never really had that desire to manage a big team. I always liked closing deals.

Let's get into it.

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Let's get into the interview. I'll sum it up at the end. Hey, Ralph, welcome back to the show as way of getting started, give us a little update on yourself.

Ralph Barsi:
Hey, how you doing, Brian? It's great to be back. All is well with me. All is well at ServiceNow.

Those not familiar with ServiceNow, we're a cloud computing company. We're based in Santa Clara, California. We're helping enterprise customers digitally transform and streamline their workflows.

So essentially, we're making work better for people. My team has grown by leaps and bounds since you and I last spoke. We're experiencing 140% growth in personnel just over the last three years, and we're putting future sales reps into seats at ServiceNow, and it's just really exciting to watch. So all is well. It's great to be here.

Cool. Now, you wrote a great blog post that you put up on Medium, and I really enjoyed it. It's kind of on the softer side of sales, isn't it?

Yeah, I get a lot of flak for that, that I'm sometimes too soft. I got to do a little softer...

...when you've done meditating or Yeah, right. What was the motivation for that?

I have kept a journal for many years throughout my career, and I'm always making these little observations. I'm hearing people drop one-liners or I'm just taking note of how leaders are leading their organizations.

And I jot stuff down a lot. And I also get asked a lot from my team and from people in the industry, what my thoughts are on how to stay motivated or how to keep reps motivated, et cetera, et cetera.

And I just decided I was on an airplane or I was in an airport terminal. I just referred back to my journal of notes and I just pumped out this post that said, "Hey, look, let's keep perspective and let's keep a lot of these things in mind when we're thinking about how to stay motivated or inspired or move the needle, et cetera." And that's how it came about.

Now, do you have a particular daily routine or is this kind of something only when you need it or what's your process?

It's definitely daily, but it's more in-the-moment than a routine per se. It's not like, "Between 7 and 8 in the morning I am going to sit and journal over a cup of coffee."

It's usually pretty random, but the good news is it is consistent and it does happen daily. I'm either scribbling something in Evernote or Google Docs or just in my Moleskine journal.

And what...Have you seen reps, the ones who can stay even-keeled as opposed to the rollercoasters? They close a deal, they're high-fiving and hitting the bell, and then when they lose a deal, they're kicking the can around the office and making a scene.

Totally. I've seen both sides of the spectrum, as have you, and the pattern, I've noticed is...the best of the best: they never get too excited and they never get too bummed out.

And I mean, you said it perfectly, they're even keel, and they really illustrate that they stay calm and centered. And I don't know if that's because they're tied to their purpose and their mission, or they're thinking much bigger than the deal that they just closed or lost, but that's what I've noticed. I mean, have you seen the same?

Yeah, I tended to do the rollercoaster and I knew it was bad. And I think what evened me out is having my why, what you call your purpose.

And I like to picture it because I'm a visual person. If I had that, I could say, no matter how good it gets, this is what I want no matter how bad I get. I just want this to stay focused and don't let those ripples drag you away from their purpose.

And it's also don't let the wrong type of self-talk sabotage the success you might be experiencing.

Don't say you're not really cracked up to hit this level in your career or in the industry. Instead, you've got to believe in the skills and competencies that you can bring to the table and the value you can add, et cetera, and just stick to the mission and move forward.

And I see a lot of people talk about mindsets, everything, and I'm kind of a little annoyed with "anything is everything," because I think everything is everything.

And if you focus only on one thing, you become good at that. But is that enough, right?

Yeah, you definitely, you want to pull from all the different strengths that you have, and you also want to admit to yourself sometimes when you don't have a strength in a certain area, like, "Hey, that's a huge area of improvement for me. It's actually a weakness. However, Brian does it really well, so maybe I can model some of the things he's doing and maybe implemented in my own style and approach."

But yeah, you can't be more right on that.

And a lot of people look at sales, what I call riding a bicycle, where it's a binary skill. You can either do it or not do it, as opposed to an evolutionary skill like cooking or being a doctor or a lawyer where it's a practice, it's not a destination.

There's no perfect doctor, there's no perfect lawyer, there's no perfect chef that they all are evolving and every day you're a performer, as opposed to, you can fix a car or ride a bike, some binary skill where it's either broken or fixed riding or not riding.

Yes. And what's really important, and you said it right then, and is let's say you're a chef. Yeah, we can all cook scrambled eggs, or most of us can, but there's a certain way you can do it that's going to be better than somebody else.

You watch Gordon Ramsey cook scrambled eggs on YouTube, and the style and approach he takes to it is just drastically different from so many others. So add your flavor to it.

If you're a musician, you've got to know when not to play versus when to play. When you're playing with a band, for example, you've got to know when to kind of lay back and let the band take over, and you've got to know when to create some space.

And how have you built this into your team and yourself? What have you seen work? Too much today on trying to turn everything into a machine?

Yeah, I agree. One of the things I've done, and one of the things our leaders have done, is we emphasize and reinforce to the field organization to stop thinking so much about themselves, start thinking about the marketplace, start thinking about the prospects and customers that we're talking to and take that seriously.

So no, it doesn't always scale when it's time to get seriously personal with a company's highlights or with an industry's trends. When you're talking about it in conversation with a prospect, if I'm going to email you Brian, and you're a prospect that we ultimately want to do business with, I'm going to find out anything and everything I can about you and your industry and your company and make it as personal as possible.

I'm not going to grab a template and default to the three bullet points to just see if I get a response from you.

I'm actually going to measure twice and cut once before I reach you, especially if you're one of those precious prospective logos that we really want to do business with and build a long relationship with. I hope that makes sense.

I think that's what people are missing today. They're talking about how great they are with the hope that somebody else can bridge that into what they want as opposed to talking about where people are, where they want to go, and how you could possibly help them.

So true, so true. Going back to that blog post you mentioned, there's a section of that post where I talk about each of us needs all of us, all of us need each of us.

And I reference a high school football team that had a winning record of 150 consecutive games over x number of years. And that coach would have every player kind of write down what their goals were for a specific game or for specific season, and they would pair up with one of their teammates, and that teammate was kind of like their accountability buddy and would hold them to those specific goals.

But the real lesson is more for the accountability buddy to be thinking, "Hey, this isn't about me. This is about 'What could I do to help Brian achieve what he's aspiring to achieve this season or this next game?'" And I just love that approach.

Now, this works when things go, you're in a high growth company, you guys are doing really well. Have you seen this work in a kind of startup situation where things didn't happen? You didn't have momentum yet, it was still too early?

Yeah, absolutely. But that was much harder, and it's for obvious reasons. When you're in the startup phase, you're still in the evangelization-education mindset.

Nobody knows about who we are, so we have to make sure that we tactfully get our brand out there without sounding too full of ourselves. But you've got to tweak how you broadcast that brand into the marketplace, and you got to make sure that that brand talks about how you're solving problems for the marketplace that you're going to serve.

And so, unless you have a leader that kind of buys into that, you're going to have a really hard time sounding like you're actually thinking about other people versus yourself.

And how about as far as keeping that momentum going? Because I think there's too much focus today on activity KPIs without really focusing on accomplishments, and micro-accomplishments, and doing the right thing, not just the thing that shows that you're doing something.

So true that...boy, we can go on that one for a minute. So one thing that I keep in mind when it comes to that is, A) you manage what you measure, and B) you have to really keep in mind as an organization, what are you measuring and compensating your reps on?

Because that is going to, in turn, drive the behavior that you want. So instead of just paying a sales development rep on the number of meetings they book or demos that they schedule, you might also want to include recognitions that they get from customers or recognitions and acknowledgements they might get from the sales reps that they support, but it's something outside the box that's going to drive the broader behavior that you want for them to do good.

Maybe you compensate them on the overall pipeline that's created from the meetings that they booked, for example, versus just that former metric because they're just going to be hammering out the wrong stuff in volume. And it goes to your point where it could go down the wrong path pretty quick.

And sometimes it's the best that they're hammering out the wrong thing. Sometimes they're faking hammering out the wrong thing.

Oh yeah, yeah, absolutely. I've seen it too many times. You're right.

And it just turns into a game that really has no objective other than, that's right, fooling each other.

And the darker side of it is when ethics and integrity are in question. That's my least favorite experience when I see that. I don't like that at all.

And it's hard. I see nothing wrong with measuring activities, but when you make the activity, the goal versus the real goal, the real goal is revenue, happy, custom...


...great meetings.

That's right.

Yeah, raving reviews from customers, all of a sudden it becomes a game and people get misdirected. What do you look for in reps to make sure their hearts and their minds are in the right place?

Oh wow, good one. I always look at attitude first. I'm a big fan of people who walk into a room and they shed light versus suck the life out of that room.

What's in it for me?

Oh man. So that's the first thing I look for is just positive disposition. I don't like whiners and complainers and finger pointers and people who just don't take accountability or action or they don't execute.

They say what they're going to do and then they just do something else. So I always look for attitude. I look for proven track records.

I love reading kudos and acknowledgements and endorsements, for example, on their LinkedIn profile or in a cover letter or recommendation letter. What do others say about 'em?

And then I want somebody who's organized. There's a lot of, especially in sales, you're spinning a lot of plates. You've got a lot of balls in the air, and you've got to make sure that you take control of your day and your week versus the other way around, and that you're resourceful.

You're using and leveraging in the right way, all the different resources in the company so that you're really acting as a team collectively towards the same goals and the same goals that your customers have.

So, those are just a few things I look for. And then there's just a last one, Brian:

It's the way people communicate. It's really important to me that people are able to articulate how they solve problems. Also, they've got to be great writers.

So much work is done by way of email today as well as text. And a lot of people lose sight of just the aesthetics of how their email comes across on a mobile device. They don't indent paragraphs, they don't ask questions.

So unless there's a question mark, you're not going to evoke a response. There's just some fundamental one-on-one stuff that I think is missed way too much in the art of writing.

And has your hiring process evolved a lot since you've been there?

Absolutely. So all the things I just mentioned, we will hit on all of those in the interview process, in the recruiting process, and obviously in the hiring process.

And when we get top talent into our organization, we have a really buttoned-up academy, if you will.

That starts, of course, in the onboarding phase, but it continues throughout their career here so that they're constantly certified and in the loop and up to speed on the latest trends in the industry, the companies that we're going to be asking them to engage with, et cetera, so that they're producing much faster than people who don't get that experience.

They become contributors of value much faster versus hanging around being consumers of value like grazing on the hillside.

Yeah. And have you found any patterns between people with athletic experience or any particular characteristic coming out of school?

Absolutely. Yeah. We certainly have. We've hired former professional athletes as well as business owners, former business owners.

There's just a resilience that they have and such a thick skin, they could take so much heat and still move forward. They just don't keep their eye off the ball and they don't see obstacles. And those are the people we want.

That mental toughness, that grit.

Yes. And again, it goes back to the attitude. Like, "Oh, we've got this. Yeah, this was a rough patch for sure, but hey, we're executing on A, B and C. We should be fine." That's the attitude you want. That's how leaders lead.

And any other hints that you look for in either their background that they have that or that they will fall apart if someone hangs up on them or kind of discouraged?

Yeah, that's a good one. There's a couple different things that come to mind. So I love candidates who are really good at branding the service they do in the marketplace, whether it's at the last three companies they were at or what they did in college.

And the more I can learn about them without talking to them, the better. So I want candidates, and I've seen the best candidates. They leave behind a big trail of breadcrumbs, kind of a catalog of all their work that you and I could look up online.

They've published an article for example, or a presentation they did was featured on YouTube. There's something that allows me to get an understanding of their character and their approach before I actually have a conversation with them and then can ask them about that.

Leave behind the work you're doing.

And how about competitiveness or money motivated?

Yeah, so huge fan of that. But I like to peel back the onion a little bit. So if I'm interviewing you, Brian, and it looks like you're a fit and you're just like, "Ralph, I'm all about the money. Let's go. I need the money."

Okay, that's wonderful. Now let's just fast forward and say you've got the money. What is the money for? And that's where I can kind get a peek into what your true purpose is, what's really driving you to make the money? Are you getting married soon? Are you looking to buy a house or make an investment or start a business someday?

That way I've got a really true understanding of, okay, I see what the drive towards the money is, and that's helpful.

And you go back to purpose if it's too short term or too tangible like a new Corvette or something, once you get the car, does that mean you stop or you just drive away or..?

Yeah. Well, that's what I want to drill into and find out when I'm talking with reps who have that mindset. I mean, I love Corvettes too. I think they're great cars. I'd love to drive one, but if I have a better understanding of why you want the Corvette, it's just going to help us help you. And that's how I roll.

How about the purpose that's kind of beyond just themselves and beyond just the 12 month window of opportunity where it's about a foundation or some impact on the world or their family?

Yeah, yeah. I highly encourage leaders who are hiring people to look for that stuff.

So ask, is it the candidate's family that is part of their purpose? Did they come from a rough background and they're trying to completely transform into a new identity for themselves?

That's purpose. To your point, maybe they want to make a bigger impact on the world. Maybe they are part of a nonprofit or maybe they contribute to a nonprofit organization that's putting clean drinking water into communities that don't have that today.

Try to drill into where's the spark in them. That way, frankly, when they hit a rough patch, whether it's a bad day or a bad quarter, you can actually remind them of the purpose or the drivers that they once shared with you. And usually that kind of pulls them out of the abyss and back on track.

And that's it. I found it. This was the first year I made my list of why, which is basically purpose, probably eight items. And I review it every morning.

And I've noticed a dramatic difference as well as I had a gratitude expert on the show probably three or four months ago, and I have my gratitude list. I love it. Yeah, I think you mentioned that in your post that that's been something that's really had an impact on you.

Absolutely. Yeah. I want to hear, before I even get into that, could you share with us some of the things you've put on your list?

It's just, I've got my health, I work for myself, my days are my own. I'm doing what I love. Just things that I would typically never think of.

Yeah. Well, I got to tell you from the outsider perspective, Brian, so many people love when you post stuff on LinkedIn when you're walking around the neighborhood.

And I mean that. It's like we're on a walk with you and you're sharing your thoughts on certain things and challenging all of us to comment back on things.

And you, you're engaging us to get into a virtual dialogue with you. And I just love that it just brightens everybody up when we're taking a walk with you.

And people say, well, how do you have time to do that? I'm going out walking anyway. I have my phone with me.

Yeah, you might as well.

I bring an index card with five topics.

Oh, that's beautiful. It's fun. Well, going back to the comments I made in the blog post. So there are a couple where I hit on that attitude of gratitude.

So first is start with taking a deep breath. Just the fact that you can take a deep breath right now and you're not in pain, at least I hope not. That is a gift.

And I think if you just acknowledge and are aware of just that very simple basic gift, you're already on the right track.

And then I go into, you are wealthy beyond imagination. And I had recently visited the World Wealth Calculator, which you could just Google, and all of a sudden you're there and you basically input your yearly income. So let's say it's 60K a year, for example.

Well, that's going to put you among the top one and a half percent wealthiest people in the world where a people earn less than $762 a year.

So, you're above and beyond so many people in the world. So I think that's an obligation where you need to serve, you need to share your strengths and your gifts with people and make the world a better place.

And then finally, to what you just mentioned about creating a list every day, whether before you go to bed at night or first thing in the morning and looking at that, it's going to keep you present to the gratitude that you have for so many different things.

And you could do something as simple as wiggling your fingers, putting a big smile on your face, opening your eyes wide, and just noticing that you're able to do that. I can see you, I can hear you. I get an opportunity to talk with you. I'm not in a hospital bed right now fighting to get through today, which so many people are.

And I think if you just keep that kind of stuff in mind, it gives you a nice little spark for the day. Yeah, I think I do have this. I think I will have a good day and I can help a lot of people in the process.

And that's it. Because the normal day for a salesperson has a lot of down points, probably more down than up. And if you can't regulate that sooner or later is really going to get to you. And I think that's the number one reason people leave sales is they get tired of the grind.

Yeah, absolutely. Dr. Steven Covey said it in the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, that "frustration is a function of your expectations."

So a lot of salespeople have these expectations that they're just going to come in and kill it Q1, 2, 3, 4.

And when you hit that rough patch and it's not happening, it's the true leaders who, like you said, have the grit and they will grind it out until the sun shines again, versus giving up and trying to go to where they think there are greener pastures.

I've seen it happen so many times, it breaks my heart.

And when you have kind of a rep who's slipping, somebody that you think has the potential to be an A player, but they're performing at B minus C plus, what has worked to convert that?

Oh, wow. So the best electroshock therapy - that usually helps. Some good waterboarding helps.

What's really helped me in my experience is going back to that purpose. It's that purpose discussion. "Hey Brian, I remember when we were interviewing you were so enthusiastic about being able to invest in this new property or start this business in five years or lead a team of your own. What happened, my man?"

And typically when you have a conversation like that that's really candid and transparent and heartfelt and you're not judging necessarily or you're not necessarily defaulting to the performance improvement plan right away, and so you're actually having the discussion to kind of figure out what's going on.

More often than not, thankfully the rep kind of pulls their head out of the clouds and gets back on track, but there's always those conversations where it's just not resonating and it's becoming more and more apparent that this just isn't a fit for them and vice versa.

And what I've always kind of sensed is if they don't own it, if they say, "You're right, I lost track. I'm open to getting back on track. This is my plan," versus them complaining about their territory or this tool or that situation or their quota, something outside of their control, that's when I think I've always felt that I've lost them.

Same. You got to be accountable. And like you said, if they're going to show you a plan of how they're going to get out of it, have them almost like a plan letter that you would send to a prospect.

"Hey, in our last talk, Brian, we talked about this. So we think it's going to take about three weeks to get that done. So here's the date we're going to pin down. Let me know if you've got any adds, moves, or changes to the plan letter I just sent."

Same thing. Those reps need to come to those leaders saying, "Hey, look, this is my plan and this is how I'm going to get it done, and by when," and the more detailed and specific they are, if we go back to the smart goals, the better then you're kind of in partnership in them fulfilling the plan that they laid out for you.

Because I've never really seen when you go to HR and you put somebody on a plan, not ever working.

Yeah, well...


You've got to, actually, I hate to break it to everybody, but you got to do the work.

Yeah, you've got to buy into it because you're asking the company to, we're not in a socialist economy.

Yeah, true.

This is capitalism and there's no employment contracts.

So classic.

And anything that you've seen in interviews that are just super red flags that you're like, "Oh, how'd this person get to me?"

Oh, good, good one. Wow. What are some red flags I've seen? So it runs the gamut: on one end of the spectrum, people who are late for the interview, that doesn't bode well.

I think if you're on time, you're late. So that's one thing that's a red flag, when you're late and you immediately have the excuses. I'm usually pretty flexible and lenient when it comes to that, but I always make note of it.

What else? People who don't send thank yous. I mean, some people will fire off a two-line email thanking you for the opportunity, which is good and fine these days. But I personally am a huge fan of getting a handwritten thank you card.

Sorry, but I know it's old school, but it really, really helps. It shows that you're putting some skin in the game that this really is an opportunity that you're focused on versus one of many that you're considering. And again, it goes back to what we were talking about with personalization. It just goes such a long way.

And showing curiosity about the job, what you like, what type of manager you are, just to see if there's some mojo there. Too often people just start immediately going into the comp plan, the territory, what are you going to do for me?

Yeah, absolutely. Or if they sit down and go, "Hey, so tell me what some of the corporate initiatives are for 2019?"

"Well, okay, based on the research you've done of our company, and of me and of our team, what would you gather might be some of our corporate initiatives? Maybe we start there."

And has anybody come in and not Googled your name?

Oh yeah, absolutely. Some people have done that and some people have come in and I'll say, "Hey, do you mind handing me a copy of your resume?" And they're like, "Oh, well, I emailed it to the recruiter," so I'm sorry I'm not stopping everything to review your resume and really think about YOU.

You're interviewing for a role HERE. Why don't you hand me your resume? And then when they do, obviously no flag goes up if they've got a copy of it now we have a good piece of work that we could have a dialogue from.

So for example, I'll say, "Hey, Brian, what on this resume do you not want me to miss? What do you want to make sure we highlight and talk about today?"

And that helps 'em let their guard down and start talking positively about the goodness that they've done. And then we could drill into other areas. But anyway, we digress.

But finding out what type of person they are, what motivates them is a job just a 9 to 5 or is a job a career, a purpose, a meaning in their life and why?


And what drives them? And too many people act like government employees where it's just looking at the HR 401k benefits and stuff, and it's like that's not the type of person that's going to be motivated and handle the hard times.

Very true. Very true. So I'm pleased to say that is the minority. I think the majority of the people that my team has interviewed and I have interviewed let's say over the last three to five years have been the opposite.

They really have done what I said earlier - measuring twice, cutting once, doing their due diligence, really vetting out the opportunity before they come to us.

But at the same time, it's a two-way street. Our organization has always focused on attracting the top talent versus pursuing the top talent.

So when we attract that top talent, we're casting that Bat Signal into the sky and we're making it very clear, "Hey, this is the cream of the crop that we are looking to have conversations with, and this is eventually the type of people we want on our team."

And it seems to work really well for us. We pull in the right candidates and we have a pretty rigorous screening phase, but we get killer candidates that come in and we end up hiring them.

Have you dealt with the January? I don't dunno how to characterize it. Everyone's got a new number, everyone's got territories have shifted, there's new initiatives, there's sales kickoff.

Yes. And so I encourage leaders out there who are experiencing that, which inevitable, if it's the beginning of your fiscal year, if it's not on a calendar year, it's going to be at some point in the year you're going to experience this.

You have to set the tone and be very clear with the team that, "Hey, this is an ever evolving, ever growing organization.

And you have to anticipate constant change. And when you do anticipate constant change, you're not freaking out. You're not freaking out with SKO just happened last week and now we just got our new number and we press the reset button and it's start all over again."

Instead, you have to have that mindset of, "I am in control of this. I'm aware that it's going to fluctuate. The path to success is not a straight line, et cetera, et cetera."

And you will ebb and flow and be flexible with the change that you're encountering.

And that's it. And too many people spend a good week or two wondering if this is the right place or I'm upset with my comp plan...

Over-engineering it, man...

And the commission rate resets. You're down at the bottom level again, got to build your way up. and you've got a new manager or a new sales rep to work with, and I think you're right. You have to just put the helmet on and go that way.

And start small. It's like ready, set, go. Put one foot in front of the other and start with the very first call or the very first email or the very first encounter, just start creating momentum.

And momentum, if you look it up in the physics formula is "mass times velocity." So you got to do a lot of work and you got to be nimble. You got to do it quickly, tick the boxes and get through the checklist of the daily to-do list, and you're going to start to slowly build momentum.

And once you do, now you're cooking.

And I think momentum is one of those overlooked characteristics from both a career standpoint and a selling standpoint.

So true.

Yeah. Once you lose it, it's hard to get started again. So true. And it's something you have to maintain.

For sure, and it comes from consistency, getting out of bed every day, getting dressed up and getting after it. It's really what it comes down to.

Hey, this has been a great conversation, Ralph. Where do people go to get a view what your blog and connect up with you?

Well, thanks so much, Brian. So you can catch me at ralphbarsi.com, and you can catch me on LinkedIn.

Again, it's @linkedin/ralphbarsi. Twitter is @rbarsi. Those are the three main places you can find me. Otherwise, I'm typically on the speaking circuit, talking with the AAISP - Inside Sales Professionals Association and a couple conferences across the country. So that's where you can find me.

I hope you enjoyed that. I think so many of these things, when we look at other people going through them, we go, just do this. And that's easily said.

I think if you talk to any addict, they say, just don't do it. Or you tell somebody who wants to change careers, just do it. It's very easy.

But it's typically not the work that gets in the way. It's the mental resistance. It's the fear. It's the wondering is are we going to get the reward that we anticipate?

But so much of life is just showing up and keep moving in the right direction, put a little bit of thought and a little bit of action in the right areas, keeps us going.

And if we get into the repair, the run, repair, run, repair, what ends up happening is it takes so much longer to repair than to prevent.

I use the Type II diabetes analogy because it is a hundred percent preventable and all it takes is not eating certain things and eating other things.

Now, if you watch any documentary on nutrition or Type II diabetes, you see this, but what does every doctor do? They tell people they get a pamphlet, but then they give 'em a prescription, a drug that basically suppresses the symptoms.

Now, a lot of us, what we do is we suppress the symptoms of being unhappy, of being unable to stay motivated, of replacing excitement with sugar, a brownie, a cookie, a cup of coffee, a cigarette or whatever.

It doesn't matter, but that thing isn't helping us. Okay? I'm not judging on it, but it's suppressing a symptom or replacing a symptom with something that's immediately positive, meaning it feels good, doesn't necessarily mean it's good for you and all of a sudden, but then it crashes very quickly instead of how do we prevent that?

How do we have a daily ritual and get away from, "I don't have time?" Okay, everybody has a minute. Everybody has 10 seconds to just have a list, whether it's on your phone, on an index card, on a Post-It something, a picture, a list of words, whatever works for you.

A song where we do it without needing it, that's prevention. Doing it without the pain, doing it as a vitamin pill. Now think about a vitamin pill. We don't take a vitamin pill to repair something.

We typically take it to prevent something. We get into a daily ritual of taking a multivitamin. Some of us OD on vitamin C when we're sick, but most of us, if we take supplements, we take it every day as just a kind of little of insurance policy.

We really don't know if it works or not. We kind of have as a placebo even, but we feel better doing it and we hope that it increases our health, our level of resistance against an illness, a cold, a flu.

And that's what these things are to our head and sales. You're going to get it, I'm telling it is like walking around a preschool. You walk around a preschool, you're going to get a cold.

Why? Because the kids have their fingers in their mouths and they're touching each other. They're eating dirt and stuff. They're just walking Petri dishes and you're going to get a cold. Now, what we want to do is prevent that because once you get a cold, how's it feel?

You might be able to temper-down the symptoms. You might even be able to stop it. Maybe if it catches soon enough, I can usually, if I got to a tickle in my throat, I'll take a day off. I'll relax, I'll eat super clean, and I can sometimes fight it off. But then if I kind of ignore it, oh, my throat's a little scratchy, maybe it's just dry.

"Oh, wait a second, I'm a little congested." I've learned that I take the immediate symptoms and quickly try and repair it, but I also eat super clean. I juice, I exercise.

I really try and stay healthy because when you're down for a week with a cold, how productive can you be? This is the same thing with our attitude, our motivation, our desire, our focus, and it is really all about that and honing it in and developing it for what the life that we want.

I hope you enjoyed the interview with Ralph. I think he's a great guy.

Check out the courses@b2brevenue.com. There's two main ones. There's one called Start the Conversation, get the Meeting. This will fill your pipeline in a systematic way.

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And what you do is you get to learn from others, you get to learn from me, you get to learn from past experience, different industries, what's working, what's not, and they're all evolving. And if you order either one of them in the month of February, you get a coupon code for the course called "Questions That Sell."

So in the office hours, there's a coupon code for the course. It's a $500 value. You get it for free by entering the coupon code. So make sure it zeroes out with the coupon code before you hit enter, because if you hit enter with the amount above zero, it will charge you that amount.

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If you have any remaining questions, you can pay for the courses all at once or in 12 payment plan, not a membership, but a payment plan, one payment per month, and whatever else you think would add value to the course, I'm open-minded to it.

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