Ignite Your Sales Power! | Stories With Traction Podcast
SUMMARY: In this episode, Joy Rains and Matt Zaun talk about her book, Ignite Your Sales Power.
JOY RAINS BIO: Joy is the author of Ignite Your Sales Power and Meditation Illuminated.
For more info, check out Joy here |
EPISODES MENTIONED DURING CONVERSATION:
Six Figure Sales Secrets
Company Culture: Definition, Benefits and Strategies
MATT ZAUN BIO: Matt is an award-winning speaker and storyteller who empowers organizations to attract more clients through the art of strategic storytelling. Matt’s past engagements have catalyzed radical sales increases for over 300 organizations that range from financial institutions to the health and wellness industry.
Matt shares his expertise in persuasion with executives, sales professionals, and entrepreneurs, who he coaches on the art of influence and how to leverage this for profits and impact.
For more info, check out Matt Zaun here:
*Below is an AI-generated transcript, which may contain errors.
Today, we're going to talk about sales.
But from a little bit different of a perspective. Today I'm joined by Joy Raines, who is the author of Ignite Your Sales Power and Meditation Illuminated.
Welcome to the show, Joy.
Thanks, Matt. It's great to be here.
I really appreciate a lot of what you do because I've never really heard sales talked about in the way that you mentioned how we should be focused on sales.
And I really want to focus our conversation today primarily through your book, Ignite Your Sales Power, because I think it's going to be unbelievably valuable to people listening just based on a lot of the concepts that you shared.
But before we dive into the different concepts, I do want to unpack your story. I just want to talk through your story, kind of what made you and positioned you to where you are.
So in your book, you talked about your father and your grandfather and how they were into sales and it was in your DNA.
So clearly through your up and you were, you were raised in an environment with individuals that were providing value to people.
So can you, can you talk about your story with us? Yeah, sure. Well, as you said, my father was in sales.
His father was in sales and I do feel it's part of my DNA. And my mom actually says she thinks I started in sales at about age three or four because whenever she said no, I would keep asking and asking and asking until finally she said, Oh, all right.
So you were relentless. Yeah.
So I learned no doesn't always mean no.
Well, there you go. Yeah, not right now. Anyway, when I was in my early twenties, I was quite stressed, had a lot of anxious thoughts and did a deep dive into meditation and mindfulness.
And I found not only did it help me relax. It helped me gain the clarity I needed to make connections with customers and grow my business.
I love that. I love that. Now I, so based on what you just said, I just, I have to mention this, this part of your book, because this stood out to me and I thought this was awesome.
So you said that early on in your career, you noticed that some sales reps rose to the top, like heavy cream and others sank to the bottom.
Like heavy weights.
I love that. So what you just mentioned was that part of the separator of, of the winners and people that were overly stressed out.
It was a big part of it. And, and the bigger part is it's all about mindset. And when people train their minds, they can train their minds to succeed.
You know, whether it's training their mind to see the customer's humanity, rather than seeing dollar signs in their eyes or training their mind to focus on achieving success, just the way a sports.
Player might picture hitting that home run.
I love that. See the, see the customer's humanity instead of dollar signs. That's awesome. Yeah. No. What do you mean by that?
Do you mean not everyone talks about, you know, focusing on the customer's pain points and, but, but again, a lot of times I see it like check the box, yeah, they're looking for the pain points, but ultimately it could come across as a very aggressive focus monetarily.
So what to focus on the customer's humanity, what does that mean to you?
Yeah, well, it means really being concerned about their needs. In other words, when somebody is in front of the customer, getting out of their own mind talk, like I hope I make the sale and is there going to be an objection I can't overcome and really focusing on the customer and what they need.
Being curious, investigating And you know, Matt, you said something really important, which is a lot of people just approach finding out about the pain points to check the box.
And you've probably been with people who do that with you. I know I have, right? They'll ask all the right questions, they'll flip to giving their presentation like they didn't even take in what I just told them.
So I appreciate you mentioning that. I've actually mentioned this story on this podcast, actually a few episodes ago with Marcus Chan, highly recommend people check out those episodes as well.
I did a series with Marcus Chan, but I had mentioned to him as well that recently I was inquiring about work being done in my house.
So I reached out to a company. Okay. So they have quote unquote hot lead, right? I'm reaching out saying, this is what I need done.
Come to my house. Let's talk through it. So the sale. rep comes and I was sold on. A B and C okay.
So I'm already sold and this individual tried to sell me on D and E. So I've already been sold in A, B, and C.
This is what I care about. This is what my wife and I need. This is what's going to benefit my family and the entire pitch back to your point about, you know, asking questions and then switching into presentation mode.
He felt the need to share stuff about the company that one, I didn't care about. It was completely irrelevant to anything that we were talking about.
And it didn't really fit in the conversation at all. It was not, again, he checked the box. I was so.
Yeah. I just felt so weird about it that I didn't even go with the company. I had to find someone else because I thought if they can't even listen to this conversation of what I'm saying, is the work going to get done the way it needs to be done?
Yeah. Yeah. It just didn't do anything. build your trust in the company.
Sure. Completely lost trust.
And you said something important about listening. Really, that's what it's all about. It's about listening to the customer and then actually taking what they say and tying it into what you're going to present to them.
Sure. Sure. No, and I appreciate you mentioned that because often we're thinking so much about ourselves in the moment that we're not truly focused on them.
And that really does come across. And I think it really speaks to what you said about seeing the customer's humanity.
Part of that is truly connecting with them, right?
If they're, if they're, if they're really the main focus, then we need to figure out how to respond in a way that truly connects as if they're being heard, not just spoken at regarding like check the box.
Yes. And you know, there are specific skills, listening skills that people can use to show the person that they're talking to that yes, you're being heard.
I actually was a crisis intervention counselor on a telephone hotline in college. Yeah. And it was open to the greater DC community.
They taught us how to listen on the hotline because people were calling in distress. And you know what? I've never had a sales course in all my decades in sales that taught me listening the way this hotline did.
Yeah. So you probably had some pretty intense calls then. Yeah, I did have some intense calls. Actually, one day I had a little girl call.
She was about 12 years old and she ran away from home and she was crying hysterically. And I asked her if she'd be willing to do a deep muscle relaxation exercise with me on the phone.
And she agreed, luckily, to the point where she calmed down and we could make next steps for her. We set up a conference call.
And the reason I bring this up is because we used a mindfulness technique, which got her out of her head into the present moment.
Wow. Now, how do you personally stay grounded with all those calls coming in? I mean, to a lot of people, I'm sure it's a toll on their mind.
How did you stay grounded personally with all the stress that all those calls, I can only imagine, day after day hearing these heart-wrenching stories.
How did you stay in the present moment and really handle stress?
Yeah, well, that's a good question. I'm just going to be honest right here. This was decades ago, and I don't remember what I did.
Okay, but you got through it though. Got through it.
I can tell you what I do now to handle the stress. And that's just taking the time to meditate almost every morning.
And if I don't have, you know, 20 minutes to meditate, I'll meditate for two minutes.
Sure. Well, I really appreciate the honesty. I'm guessing based on everything that you teach now, you probably wish that you had that skill set back then, right?
To overcome all the stress that was coming your way. But I definitely appreciate the honesty for sure. Thanks for sharing that.
I appreciate that. I want to talk about something that you had mentioned. I love this story. You had mentioned that it's a, it was a cold morning.
You wake up, this is prior to electric cars and you were really frustrated. Your car wouldn't start. Your husband turned to you and said, very matter of fact, you need three elements for ignition, fuel, air, and spark, and then you dive into fuel, air, and spark, so I want to talk about that.
I want to, because I really appreciate you spelling it. out just in a very simple way and a very memorable way.
And you mentioned fuel managing your thoughts. So managing your thoughts is the fuel that really powers this. Your thoughts are fuel for your mind and for your actions in the world.
So can you speak to the fuel element? Yeah, absolutely. Well, Matt, your big thing is storytelling, right?
And we as humans tell ourselves stories all the time. And those stories fuel us, sometimes in a productive way, sometimes in a way that creates obstacles.
And everybody has internal mind talk in the back of their minds, in the background of their minds. Some people are aware of it, some people aren't.
I call this mind talk STUFF, which is an acronym for stories, thoughts, urges, frustrations, and feelings. And somebody... These stuff, their own internal mind talk is what fuels their behaviors in the world.
I love art. So let me make sure I'm getting this right. So stuff, stories, thoughts, urges, frustrations, feelings. That's awesome.
Okay. So stuff. So does that, does that tie into the visualization as well? That the way we were, we're saying different stories to ourselves, right?
Because sometimes the most powerful stories we're sure the ones we tell ourselves.
So are we, are we envisioning a reality that's painting the perception of negativity? Is that part of it?
It is. And it can be. Um, so a lot of times people are wired to think negative thoughts. It's a, an ancient survival mechanism, you know, kept our ancestors safe in the wild.
When they were constantly vigilant, they didn't want to become the tiger's lunch. So if somebody in sales is thinking negative thoughts that
They're believing like, ah, Friday afternoon is a terrible time to call on clients. Well, guess what? They're not gonna call on clients on a Friday afternoon.
Or if they tell themselves the story, they're not gonna buy from me. They only buy from their long-term supplier.
Well, guess what? They may not pursue that account. And there might be an opportunity there.
So when somebody can choose their stories, they can directly affect their results. I really appreciate you mentioning that. And also, you mentioned in your book that the average person generates anywhere from 50,000 to 70,000 thoughts per day, which when you think of it from a negative perspective could be horrifying, because if half of those thoughts are negative and these terrific thoughts we project on ourself, that's not gonna lead to good stuff, right?
Based on what you said, that stuff. It's not gonna lead to good stuff. So it's really, and I... I appreciate you mentioning, just thinking about this won't go this way or this won't go this way.
You know, it's interesting. I was recently talking to a gentleman that said something to me I thought was really profound.
He said, often when it comes to listening, we're projecting our past experiences on that person.
And his point was, if we have a little bit of a negative experience with someone, we're constantly listening to what they're saying through the lens of that one negative experience and boxing out something that could be good.
And that person, they might have grown and changed and they're in a completely different spot three months later, but we're talking to them and we're listening to them, right?
That negative stuff based on our past. I thought that was fascinating and there was a lot of wisdom in that.
There is and it's so true. And not only would somebody be listening to the person with the past experience with that person in mind, let's say that person reminds them of the
boy in high school who jilted them, well, all of a sudden that story interferes. Or if the person reminds them of the aunt who's negative towards them, all of a sudden that story interferes.
So people make stuff up in their minds all the time, and that's just the nature of the mind. It's neither good nor bad, it just is.
Well, you're absolutely right, and that's like the triggers, right, where different triggers come from. And we could be reliving trauma through those triggers, which is really important to recognize.
Absolutely, yeah. I've done pretty intensive study regarding trauma. I think there's a big misconception, and what I learned was often part of that.
There are people that go through horrific experiences that would absolutely be wrapped into the trauma piece, but often there's other elements.
trauma that we don't actually, some people say like there's the capital T trauma and lowercase T, but sometimes, and this speaks to what you're saying, especially when it comes to negative thoughts is we could be going through a traumatic experience.
Maybe we were raised in a certain way that was traumatizing for us. And we relive it based on these negative thoughts that we're constantly pumping into our head over and over again.
So there's more trauma in our life than we might recognize. And unfortunately I've seen trauma play out with leaders at companies.
I actually recently got done doing a podcast series with Ricardo Gonzalez, and we dove really deep into this based on company culture.
It was fascinating how some CEOs relive trauma in their own life and projected on their team through their culture, the way they speak to people, the way they conduct themselves.
It's actually quite horrifying when you really think about, raised in a certain environment and now they base the company culture based on those behaviors.
And it all goes back to the different thoughts, right? That stuff, you mentioned the acronym, that stuff that they are telling themselves.
Absolutely. And what you're describing is not uncommon at all. And what you're describing also speaks to the neuroplasticity of the brain.
So this is the bad news and the good news. So the bad news is somebody keeps on reliving the trauma again and again and again.
And it's like wearing that well-worn path in the grass, right? The grooves get deeper and deeper each time they replay it.
But because the brain can create new neural pathways, if somebody becomes aware of those negative patterns, they can intentionally shift their thinking and create new patterns.
That is awesome because we all need to do that in many areas of our life.
So it definitely gives people hope for sure. Yeah.
Yeah. I, I appreciate that. And obviously it's not easy, right? But we need to work on it consistently to get through that for sure.
So I very much appreciate you mentioned that that's something that a lot of leaders need to focus on.
Again, it does go back to the personal stories we tell ourselves.
That's really going to dictate the behaviors that, that we have. And even that, you know, the gentleman that I mentioned earlier regarding the way he was focusing on different elements, there could be experiences in that person's past that kind of geared them to speak in that manner.
Right. So it's really important to unpack this.
Yeah. And as you say, Matt, it's not easy because we as humans are creatures of habit. So it takes so much intentionality to shift those habitual patterns, the habitual ways of thinking.
But it can be done. It can be done with intention and practice. You know, I remember when my younger daughter wanted to learn how to play soccer and it just felt really awkward to her to kick the soccer ball with the side of her foot because she was used to kicking a ball with her toe.
And we would go down to the elementary school field after dinner every night. And she'd kick the ball again and again and again and again until she finally created a new pattern.
And it's the same way with any of this mental training and trying to change habitual thoughts. It's that repeated practice again and again of shifting your mindset, shifting from negative to positive, shifting from caring only about yourself and your quota to having compassion for your customer, shifting to neutral and letting go of those stories that simply are interpretive.
interpretations of events that aren't even serving you. Sure. Wow.
That's powerful right there.
Well, thank you. I appreciate you mentioning that. And that's something that we all need to focus on. It's just, it's tough, but it's very rewarding.
So I appreciate you mentioning it. So the second piece that you had talked about was the air piece. So we had talked about fuel and now air.
So I want to talk about that. And then you mentioned concentration regarding the air piece, which ties into thoughts as well, but it goes a little bit further about giving space to your customers.
So what do you mean by giving space to your customers? Well, um, a lot of salespeople. Uh, go into a client meeting completely focused on their agenda.
It's all about them. I want to sell this new product. I want to make my quota. And if they just gave space to the customer to find out what.
What is it what the customer wants? Like this home improvement person who called on you, you wanted A, B, and C.
If they just gave you the space to say, Hey, I need A, B, and C, you probably would have signed up right there.
But instead they were pushing D and E.
I love that you mentioned this. I cannot tell you how much I'm just excited about what you're saying because I don't want this to be missed.
A lot of this ties back to curiosity. And I recognize this in my own life. Actually a few years ago, I didn't recognize how much I was messing up.
So my background is in the political arena. I was a political speechwriter for quite some time. And a lot of that focuses on intense research.
So from an academic perspective, I was trained with intense research and then I get involved in politics and it served me very well.
There's a lot of data points, a ton of research. There is so much. Us on facts and figures and numbers behind the scenes.
And then I learned quickly that you need to tell stories. No one cares about the facts and figures. They actually cared about the stories that, you know, we're connecting.
But where this was my detriment in business was I brought that into the business world where I intensively. Did research on people.
And what ended up happening was I created this narrative in my own mind that when I met with this person, we were like, I was going to take them through this entire process based on my research.
So I would see their background and you know, where they went to school and just very, very intense research thinking to myself, if I'm unbelievably prepared for this conversation, I'm going to knock it out of the park again, really focused on I I I'm going to impress this prospect.
I I right. And what ended up happening was when the conversation didn't go the way I was expecting or the way I told my.
It wasn't a great way to connect. So back to your point about giving space to the customer, when I shifted gears and I was more focused on the curiosity, that's when things changed.
Now I do want to mention to people, I highly recommend never going into a meeting completely blind, right?
Like if you, there is ways to do research, to understand a lot about the person, but not using it as a way to dictate the agenda of the meeting.
Cause I think that gets in the way of the curiosity. Absolutely.
You know, I used to play a game with my kids called fact or opinion for them to try to differentiate between what was a fact and what was somebody's opinion.
So it sounds like if you do the research and gather the facts, but you leave your opinion outside the door, then you can meet your customer with more of a sense of curiosity, right?
And also, interestingly enough, research shows that when people talk about themselves, they have this physiological effect, like neurons fire that feel really good.
People love talking about themselves. So yeah, if you can go in and see a customer and give them space to talk about themselves, not only can you find out more about them and where you can do business, they're gonna like you more because your neurons are gonna be firing.
Sure. So I have to talk more about this fact and opinion game because I have to play this with my kids now.
So fact and opinion, right? So I'm guessing you're bringing up different situations that happened and you're mentioning that and then you're talking about things like, how does that work?
Because I'm gonna be doing this at my dinner table tonight. I just wanted them to see beyond absolutes that people say.
And I would just make statements. Is this a fact or opinion? The sky is blue fact, the sky is pretty opinion.
So I wanted them to be able to reach their own conclusions and, you know, have a sense of what was true inside of themselves and not necessarily take what somebody else was saying as the truth.
I love that.
Thank you for sharing that.
I am going to incorporate, I kid you not. I'm going to incorporate that into a dinner discussions for sure.
I appreciate it.
I'll let you, I'll let you know how it goes.
I have an eight year old, a seven year old and a four year old. So I'm sure it's going to, it's going to make a lot of fun conversation.
So in the business world, though, I think I want people to recognize. Fact and opinion when it comes to people and the perceptions we have.
Hmm. So as an example, let's say we know someone went to X, Y, and Z school. Okay.
So fact they went to.
the school and they got their MBA at this time. So in our mind, we're thinking, all right, the fact is this person knows X, Y, and Z based on their background.
However, that person might've gone to school quite some time ago and their opinions might've changed. And I think we get in, we box people into these different, the stories that we're actually telling themselves that might not be their story, you know, they, they live in a certain part of the country.
So we assume something. And it's not really based on what their opinion about the situation might be. So I think that's really important to you because I do think from a storytelling perspective, it's good to know, and I talk about this all the time about ICP, ideal client persona, and kind of knowing different elements of that makeup, the books they read, the movies they watch, the sports teams that they're fans of all this is really helpful.
When we're speaking to people, however, we could be projecting certain opinions we think people have that aren't really their opinions.
And that goes, that goes back to listening back to your, your, one of your points you made about listening to them and their opinions could have changed too.
Absolutely. So here's what I'm a big fan of is putting one's mind in neutral before interacting with clients and completely focusing on the client.
Like, have you ever just been so engaged in a in a movie or a book? You're so focused on it.
Nothing else exists in your consciousness at that moment. And imagine bringing that sort of awareness to your client. Just letting go of your stuff.
Now I'm also a fan of working your stuff when you're not with your clients and training your mind to see those positive aspects.
But then when you're with your client, and this is what I mean by air, just giving space to them, they're all that matters in that moment.
I love, I love that. I absolutely love that. I, you know, it's amazing how sometimes we'll see something and we think, because we've seen it a million times that we've seen it and it's not until we open up our eyes and we look at it almost as if it's new, that that's where like the beauty comes out.
And I think this speaks to what you're saying is, you know, recently I, and I learned this through mindfulness, but I was driving down the street and I must've seen this tree.
I mean, countless times, right? It's on my route when I, when I leave my house and for whatever reason, I was stopped at the stoplight and I, you know, I'm at the stoplight and I'm not checking my phone for once.
Right, there's a whole other, a whole other topic, right. But I look up at this tree And I was looking at it almost as if I had never seen it before.
Right. And just seeing how absolutely beautiful the leads were. And it was just such a gorgeous day. And it just brought this sense back to what you're saying about you're, you're so in the present moment that there's more of a connection with what's happening.
And I think often, especially for sales reps that they've gone through their pitch countless times that they're not in the present moment because they're so focused on almost that robotic state that they put themselves in.
So I don't want people to underestimate the power of what you're saying right now. It is, there's something about being in the present moment, being so focused that that's what really brings out the connectivity.
Absolutely. And it sounds like you had an awesome experience seeing that tree, you know, how great is that seeing it anew?
And actually I did a presentation yesterday for a corporate account and the topic was the mindfulness practice. practice of beginning again, which is exactly what you're saying.
And it's meeting each situation and each person with fresh eyes. People are going to have stuff no matter what.
But it's important to try to ship that stuff so you can meet each situation and each person with those fresh eyes and think about the joy that that brings to your life just beginning again, I mean, it's unbelievable.
Just something as simple as watching a sunset, seeing a tree, something that we've seen over and over again. But if we're pausing and we're truly focused, there's so much beauty and joy that can come out of life..
based on stuff that we take for granted, to be honest. We just take so much for granted. There's so many reasons why there are many issues in our culture when it comes to not being in the present moment, but there's something we said about what joy are we missing out on in life that is there that we're just not in the present moment.
We're not cognizant enough to realize.
Absolutely. And imagine bringing that joy to your client interactions. They're going to be so connected with us. Yeah.
That's awesome. So I appreciate that. I appreciate mentioning that. So let's dive into the third part though, because you do mention the determination piece, which is the spark.
So based on everything you talked about, you know, beginning again, mind in neutral, we still do need that determination.
So how do you separate the curiosity and being. as in being focused, but also not losing that spark?
Yeah, well, that's a good question. You know, I almost see this as a wheel with the focus in the center of the wheel and then going out from there, the client centered behavior, the curiosity, the humanity.
But at the very outer edge, the wheel has to drive and there has to be drive. And just like I talked about my daughter kicking that soccer ball again and again and again, something in her wanted to learn how to play soccer.
Right. And I like to sometimes look at animals for inspiration or metaphors. And I think of a woodpecker just pecking again and again and again.
I mean, at some level, especially in sales, because sales can get challenging at times after hearing no. There has to be that wanting, wanting to succeed more than anything.
I mean, just imagine getting yourself in that mindset. I'm going to succeed at this. I'm going to have the drive to continue at this, no matter what happens and following through, you know, there has to be drive.
My dad told me early on sales isn't easy. However, if it was easy, companies would just need order takers.
They wouldn't need salespeople. Well, there you go. Well, there you go. There you go. And you had mentioned when you were three, you were relentless, right?
You had drive about it. It didn't matter if you got a million. No, I appreciate you mentioning that. And thank you so much for, for the work that you put in the world.
I really do appreciate this. Ignite your sales power book that you, that you wrote it. There's chalk with a lot of really good stuff that I don't think sales teams are talking enough about.
I think they're really focused on the drive part, but when it's separate. From that mindfulness piece. Good things don't happen.
Right. I mean, if we're not truly connected with our clients, it's not, it's just not a good situation. You can have the most driven sales team in the world.
If they're not focused on that stuff that you had mentioned, it's going to be incredibly frustrating.
It's like a changing the oil in the car without changing the filter. And when your filter is clear, that's when you can really grow your business.
I love that. Thank you. I really appreciate you mentioning that. And thank you so much for your time today.
I know you're extremely busy, but I really appreciate you spending it. Just going over a lot of these points that I think are extremely important.
In fact, there were three main takeaways that I took from our conversation today that I want people to not lose sight of, I really appreciate that you mentioned, see the customer's humanity instead of dollar signs, and I want people to focus on that and.
really almost check themselves because sometimes we may think we're doing that, but I think we really need to pause and really, really try to understand, are we focused on their needs, that humanity piece, or is there that hidden agenda where it's just check the boxes, we don't really care what they're saying.
So I think that's important to recognize. I also really appreciate, and it's very memorable, you mentioning that stuff piece.
So stuff, stories, thoughts, urges, frustrations, and feelings. And then the third piece was the space to the customer, giving space to the customer to allow that curiosity to take hold, where it's that mind in neutral.
We're allowing the curiosity to take hold that we can truly connect with them and not just go through what we think needs to be done.
So I got a ton out of our conversation. people listening did as well. So joy, thank you again. If there, if people want to learn more about what you do, your trainings, what's the best way that they can contact you?
My website is joyreigns.com. And I also just started a brand new Instagram account. Joyreigns underscore mindful sales.
Love it. Okay. So to make it extremely convenient, I will put that in the show notes. It's people that just click and go right to your site as well as your Instagram account.
Thank you so much again, joy. I very much appreciate this conversation.
And thank you so much, Matt, for having me appreciate you.
Want weekly updates...
to take your storytelling
to a whole new level?