“You’re able to build trust and all those things and you’re not thinking about what the next question is you’re going to ask because it becomes part of how you talk and how you interact with folks.” – Craig Nishizaki in today’s Tip 87
What do you believe are the top 3 things that have contributed most to your success in sales?
Join the conversation below and share it with us!
Episode 66: Craig Nishizaki of UpTop on How to Get to the Top
Craig Nishizaki on LinkedIn
Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. If you’re not already listening to my Sales Success Stories Podcast it’s a deep dive interview show where I only interview, active, quota-carrying individual contributors who are either #1 or at least in the top 1% of contributors. There’s a brand new episode of that show available today featuring Craig Nishizaki from UpTop in Seattle, and I start every one of those interviews by asking what that sales professional believes are the top 3 things have contributed most to their success in sales. Here’s what Craig had to say:
Craig Nishizaki: So the three things I believe that has helped me in my career early on learning and following a sales methodology or process and learning and so well that it becomes part of your DNA. And I was fortunate to find a coach, mentor, or a sales coach early on that just really drilled that into me. And so his point was get your process to where you are at the phase where the questions and discussion flow real smoothly and you’re able to ask and go deeper into qualifying or disqualifying prospects. You’re able to build trust and all those things and you’re not thinking about what the next question is you’re going to ask because it becomes part of how you talk and how you interact with folks. And so that allows for more consistency. And that was the first and one of the first things early on that I learned. And then secondly is constantly learning. So knowledge is powerful. You know the buyer in the enterprise sale spends most of their time not interacting with you. If you think about enterprise sales cycle, the Gartner has a stat that only about 18% of that buyers time is spent interviewing vendors. And if they’re looking at three vendors and you’re getting less than 6% of their time and their attention. And so being able to have domain knowledge and business acumen to present or position yourself as an advisor and differentiate yourself from other salespeople I think is really important. And when I talk about constantly learning, I mean when I was in the telecom space, I went out and did installations with the technician. So I understood what exactly happened when they installed a phone system or a data network or you know, early when I was working in the office equipment industry, understanding from a technical perspective what it is that they do to maintain something so that I could then use that information to help position us as a good solution or for that client. And then I think the other part of it is understanding the market, understanding trends, but understanding your product and service strengths and weaknesses as well as those of your competition. So you can learn how to position your product, your service, and your company in the best light as a solution for that prospect. And then the third thing is just taking pride in the work. Now, most people won’t. What we do as salespeople are or not as salespeople, they wouldn’t want to be a salesperson because they don’t like the nature of it. But even in those salespeople want to do the work. You know, it’s the idea of starting your day. Well, you know, getting into the office early, spending that first 30 minutes, reading, learning, prepping, finishing strong. You know, when I was early on in my role selling my first job selling copiers or office equipment, I really learned that, you know, on Friday, late in the day everyone was kind of talking about what they’re going to do that weekend. And I spent that time sending out or making calls, you know, just trying to do some outreach toward the end of the day on a Friday. And I got through to people a lot easier. And then early in the day on Monday when everyone was talking about what they did on the weekend, I was doing the same thing and it seemed to be successful for me. So I just kind of adopted that as part of what I do. And then, you know, Russell Wilson, the quarterback for the Seahawks has the same separation is in the preparation. And I think just being very prepared for everything that you’re doing throughout your day, whether it’s prepping for a sales call, whether it’s prepping for a meeting, setting the agenda, et Cetera, so that you’re in control of what happens is as much as possible. And then that you’re able to slow down the conversation because you’re already thinking through what the steps are. And that leads into kind of owning your calendar, having a consistent prospecting habit. I’ve had times in my career where I haven’t, and you know, three to six months later you see the net result of that where your sales results dip. And so that’s proof right there that having a consistent habit isn’t necessary. And then I think at the end of every day, because sales is oftentimes a lonely battle or you feel like you need a safe harbor, you know, and you can be your best coach or you can be your worst enemy. I think at the end of the day, what I like to do is ask two questions on myself. Did I give my best effort today and did I provide value to my clients, my company, and my colleagues? And if I can’t be honest with myself about that, and then that day wasn’t a good day. All right? If I came out of the day feeling like I did, then even if I didn’t win a deal or I didn’t advance a deal, or I’ve got some no’s, etc. that was a good day. So that’s kind of the three things that I’ve built into my daily habit, and I think that that’s helped me be consistent over the years.
Scott Ingram: If you’re intrigued by what Craig had to share in just under 5 minutes here, then there’s an additional hour of greatness for you on Sales Success Stories. For links to that interview and more about Craig click over to DailySales.Tips/87, and as always your comments are welcome and encouraged.
Thanks for listening!