How did Denis Champagne start and grow his racket sports and corporate communications business and career?
Denis Champagne started his own racket sports agency in 1989, but a failed deal led him to become a partner in a successful call center business. He then moved on to corporate communications, CDROMs, and prospecting, where he was successful at opening doors and hearts and minds until 2018.
How do you hit your sales goals when you're targeting?
Targeting well in sales means focusing on one's own motivation, planning and preparing well, and competing with oneself to always get better and stay relevant to customers. This can be done by focusing on serving existing customers well, coming up with new ideas, and always being aware of possible competitors.
How should salespeople go about prospecting to make sure their solutions are a good fit?
When prospecting, salespeople should be curious and caring, and they should make sure to confirm and validate that the prospect is a good fit for their solutions. This way, they won't waste time trying to make a square peg fit in a round hole. Also, they should use cold calling to gather information about the market and learn more about it.
What is the most important thing about practice and coaching during the sales process?
The speaker says that practice and coaching are important for salespeople to learn and master skills, and that it is unfair and irresponsible for senior management to think that salespeople are "natural born" and not invest in their training and development.
Marcus Cauchi: [00:00:00] Hello, and welcome back once again to the Inquisitor podcast with me, Marcus Cauchi. Today, I have, as my guest, Denis Champagne, he is the founder of Lotus Communication. He is a practicing Buddhist he's, uh, spent the last 14 years, 15 years working directly in the role of prospecting opening doors for clients. He's also really, uh, developed a form of coaching
within organizations that liberate salespeople from poor targeting he's, uh, helped them to overcome their need, to get away from metrics and focus on what actually drives motivation and to turn habitual, phenomenal performance into a pattern of behavior. So without any further ado Denis, welcome.
Denis Champagne: Thank you, Marcus.
Thank you so much. I really look forward to this.
60 seconds history
Marcus Cauchi: So would you mind giving the audience maybe 60 [00:01:00] seconds on your history please?
Denis Champagne: Well, I'm a former squash professional and in my early career, an indoor racket sports professional in, in Canada. And after that I got involved in selling. Someone thought that I would have the drive or the grit to engage people over the phone.
In those days, in the eighties and nineties, it was a phone. And subsequent to that, I built my own company. A call center. Did that for 10 years and then gone into corporate communications and prospecting. As you show it, you talked about.
Marcus Cauchi: Okay. So you've had an interesting history and you said that it was largely the gristle and the mud and the blood, the sweat, and the tears that's formed you.
Marcus Cauchi: So talk to me about that journey, because I think far too few people really appreciate the value of a good kicking on a [00:02:00] regular basis.
Denis Champagne: Obviously, when you start up your own business, because I didn't think that I was a, going to be the best employee, although I did my best, but there is something that was unfitting or unbefitting for me to be subject to accountability to someone else when I could do the same myself.
So, in 1989, after arriving in Montreal from leaving Toronto, I decided to start off my own agency in selling racket sports. Actually, it was, um, some product Ascot rackets from England where the products that I was going to represent here in Canada, and then the deal didn't come through. So someone who had seen me as the McGill university squash team coach, uh, during our event, the prizes and the award ceremony happened to be someone that I had trained in a call center in Toronto way back a few years.
And he said, and it really [00:03:00] resounded with me. He says, I'd been, I had heard that you had moved to Montreal, and I remember you the way you worked in the office and how you behaved. And it struck with me. And I said, if any time in the future, I can have an opportunity I'd like to connect with you. So the message here is people are watching you, even though you may seem unobvious.
People are watching. And so everything you do and say has an impact and someone may take note and eventually get back to you. So that taught me a lesson and that got me into a partnership, a business partnership for 10 years in a call center that we ran together. We did very well in transactional sales, and then I decided to move on to corporate communications back in the days it was corporate CD ROM.
CD ROM was the way to give a tool instead of a brochure. It was a talking CD ROM with [00:04:00] video and macro media and vectorial flash and all of those technologies to enhance communications corporately. So I did that for a few years, and then I got into prospecting because so many companies had no one involved joyfully involved in the top of funnel.
Uh, I, I say joyfully because most people view it as drag and a drag. And, uh, it's really the fun part because that's, when you discover, you know, talk about a word discovery, uh, inherently prospecting is the true discover you discover them, they discover you. And so. Yes. From 2006 to about 2019 -18, I focused mostly on opening doors and opening hearts and minds.
Before you pick up phone to call, What's your intent?
Marcus Cauchi: So thinking about the mindset, I'm really curious before you pick up phone to call or [00:05:00] a headset, uh, base, I guess, but before you, uh, dial. What's going through your mind? What's your expectation? What's your intent?
Denis Champagne: It's to just make the other person resound fully respond, not re react to my call. I remember in my call center, I used to have a team of sellers in the evening for fundraising, for charity.
I remember a gentleman that I had called in part of the city in the evening to raise money for a charity.
Marcus Cauchi: Yep.
Denis Champagne: A gentleman said to me, something that always stayed with me afterwards, and it was kind of almost a modus operandi for me and modus vivendi actually is he said, your prospects reaction is your attitude.
And I said, wow, what a revelation? His response or reaction is your attitude. That brought me to open my heart in my mind to Zig Zigler and Zig [00:06:00] Zigler spoke very strongly about the power because in those days the phone was omnipresent and it was probably the only tool, the only text tech that we had.
So we had a lot of practice. And if you were not able to engage calmly with respect and trust to calm, Reassure the person, because people are really keenly aware of your voice without them realizing it themselves. Can I trust this voice, this vibe, the vibration of your voice? So Zig said probably the most important factor in improving your closing percentages has to do with the use of your voice and to practice it.
So it was very important to me to understand. When I call someone, I want to calm them down and not make them feel as I'm coming after them, but coming to them with, [00:07:00] as a humble servant, kind of curiously, caringly, interested and serving. If there is a problem that I have studied or I identified that are most likely to occur in your company, whether it is in, in existence or not, we will find out.
Sometimes I do my research that I know for a fact through PR websites or during your research. And that is part of my methodology. As I told you, deep research. Caring research before. So you come with a very strong business case in the forefront. So yeah, it's about calming and reassuring the person. And you can tell, you can tell if you pay attention, you can tell the person feels yeah.
How, how, and they, I asked them, I asked actually I have a, a ten second te methodology or trick, or [00:08:00] I could approach that. So let's say you answer the phone and I will, you know.
Marcus Cauchi: Hello, Marcus Cauchi
Denis Champagne: Mr. Cauchi. Hello, Marcus. Cauchi
Marcus Cauchi: yes.
Denis Champagne: Oh, hi, Mr. Cauchi Denis, on behalf of Lotus Communications. Have you been, sir?
Marcus Cauchi: I'm good. Thank you.
Denis Champagne: Right.
Marcus Cauchi: Do I know you?
Denis Champagne: So, yes. And that's right. So if you ask back to me how I, I, that is an open door for a conversation.
Marcus Cauchi: Okay.
Denis Champagne: So I've noticed that I've mentioned your name three times, nothing more important. Nothing is more important to you Marcus than Marcus Cauchi.
Marcus Cauchi: Okay.
Denis Champagne: That's a very basic Dale Carnegie and I, I was eight times Dale Carnegie graduate assistant since 95.
So I remember the power, the Omni potency of the person's name. Please let's remember people's names are the sweetest sound to their ear. [00:09:00] In their own language, not in yours language. So Denis is my name not Dennis.
Marcus Cauchi: Yeah.
Denis Champagne: Right.
Marcus Cauchi: Yeah.
Denis Champagne: And happily enough people are sensitive to my name now, but I have many that say, Hey Dennis, and I correct them.
And they say, oh, I'm so sorry, because they realize that it's important to them. Their name.
Marcus Cauchi: I really appreciated that you've got my name right from the a, because that's about the second time in my life that it's happened. So it will stand out. That makes you memorable, but also I think far too few people really think of the customer as a human being.
When you turn up, whether you are at their office, knocking on their door, making a call, invading their space through your tedious, digital advertising or whatever. If you don't show up and turn up in a timely and relevant fashion, deliver value and leave them wiser, you've just been an interruption.
That's a very [00:10:00] selfish occupation, but it's certainly the one that I see most people in leadership and management encouraging. And to me, that smacks of something, uh, gone sour. My friend Simon Bow says that selling should be the most noble thing you do in your business. And I, I agree the job of a seller.
Is to facilitate the best possible decision for the buyer, whether they buy from you or not. And it's to make them feel safer, having you with them than without them. Now, if you don't start out that way, you are already on the back foot. So Denis tell me this, or once you've managed to create that, uh, moment of engagement where they're asking you a question, what is it you're trying to do next?
Once you've managed to create that moment of engagement where they're asking you a question, what is it you're trying to do next?
Denis Champagne: Well, as to bring relevance as quickly as possible within the first 10, 15 seconds afterwards, there has to be something [00:11:00] that resonates in, ah, this person understands my situation.
Marcus Cauchi: Okay. So this then points back to something further upstream, which is targeting because with the wrong targeting, it doesn't matter how good you are at prospecting.
How do we target effectively?
Marcus Cauchi: You're still only going to be like, you know, a broken clock. You might be lucky twice a day, but that seems to be an enormous waste of eight hours and 59 minutes and 58 seconds. So let's start with the targeting piece before we then move on. How do we target effectively?
Denis Champagne: Well, uh, first of all, target your own motivation.
Uh, I, when I talk about my team's model, by the way, which is TEAMMS, which is my, my sales model, my prospecting model. T is about 50% of the work. We don't spend enough time targeting correctly. Uh, when I decided in 2006 to qualify for the world [00:12:00] championships in masters track cycling. In my age bracket, I did two world championships and, um, I spent more of the time planning with my coach, our program.
It was six days a week, every month for 11 and a half months for five years. So the goal is to be three years down the road qualifying. So it wasn't something that I took lightly. So same thing with targeting. If we don't spend enough time planning, correct. Preparing correctly. Have you heard of P P P P P proper preparation prevents poor performance?
Marcus Cauchi: Uh, well I use six Ps. It's a slightly coarser version.
Denis Champagne: okay.
Marcus Cauchi: Prior Planning, Prevents Piss Paul Performance.
Denis Champagne: Yeah. That's exactly. Well, that's very naturally good for you. I mean, that fits, uh,
Marcus Cauchi: my, my dad was in the military, so that's where I learned that one from
Denis Champagne: that's. Nice. It's it's okay. It's [00:13:00] it gets the message across that's for sure.
so targeting is about targeting your own heart, targeting your own motivation, targeting, uh, be clear in your, in the job. Why are you in sales? Not take it lightly. So once you have that clear out of the way, any and all future and ulterior initials initiatives will be a lot more clear to you because you always have to go back as I work with a client, you know, if there is a misunderstanding at some point, I always go back to what's the goal again, who are the three objectives we set at the beginning and it brings people back to the basics in squash as a professional player, Jahangir Khan taught me that seek to be an expert in the basics.
You can never fail.
Marcus Cauchi: Again, this is fantastic advice. And the mantra is do the basics well consistently over time and mean it. And all [00:14:00] the time look for ways to compete with yourself. The, the mistake people make is the complacency. And I learned from, uh, uh, Raul Shahan, uh, a wonderful model, which is a 70, 20, 10, 70%.
Love your existing customers work them as best you can stay relevant time. Be valuable. 20% is the innovation piece. So that's the, uh, the next iteration. What am I gonna sell the 70% next? And then 10% attacking yourself. Because at some point someone's gonna come in and either commoditize or make you irrelevant.
So if you haven't got that planned, then you're in deep trouble. And I think from a salesperson's perspective, you need to think like that because that's how customers need to. I think if you come in and you just pedal product and you're a feature monkey, you just have no relevance or value.
Denis Champagne: True.
Marcus Cauchi: Okay. So talk to me about the rest of this TEAMMS model, cuz now you've got -
Denis Champagne: oh, target target.
It [00:15:00] all has to do with more than 60% of our prospects are not really clearly a good fit for our solutions. So we need to make sure that this product market fit exercise is really seriously taken. To the extreme, like push for the clarity, the relevance, and almost like seek to confirm and validate that.
So in your curiously caring approach, when you prospect someone, you really and wanna make sure that you care about that. I don't want to continue this conversation, Mr. Or Mrs. Prospect, because parenthetically, I'm not sure that I can help. I don't wanna just waste your time and they will appreciate that.
They will appreciate that more than trying to make a fit a square peg in a round hole. And there are far too many who are trying to make its fit, where there is no fit. One of the principles of how to avoid stress in life [00:16:00] and stop worrying and start living a book from Dale Carnegie. He says, learn to accept the inevitable.
They will calm you down. So, and joyfully and respectfully say, thank you for your time. I really appreciate it. You may say, and by the way, has anything of what I've said seems to resonate for someone that you may know that may be in a position to appreciate this, that kind of he or she, depending on how you've created the context, of course, again, going back to the initial establishment in the first 10 seconds.
Marcus Cauchi: This really speaks to
something that's so embedded and ingrained in sales culture and sales management culture and sales leadership culture in the thinking is that you've gotta do things in a way that requires some penitent, some suffering, because [00:17:00] I'm a big fan of cold calling done well. And it is one tool in your mix of ways of engaging with, and, uh, of customers and prospects, but also intelligence gathering.
Cause I think people undervalue the value of cold calling for gathering intelligence about your marketplace. Almost nothing is quicker. Then having 20, 30 conversations with people in the space and then learning from them, cuz they'll teach you how to sell, but we need to start thinking more intelligently.
How do I stop them wasting time on dead activity?
Marcus Cauchi: How, one of the questions that is bothering me that isn't being asked is how do I turn these highly trained, highly skilled people who have this, rare capability of being able to engage with strangers on the phone and how do I get them to spend 80% of their time doing that instead of instead of 99% of it talking to voicemail, how do I stop them wasting time on dead activity?
Denis Champagne: Well, first of all, let's talk, [00:18:00] talking about the numbers game and play more for the quality game.
Marcus Cauchi: Absolutely.
Denis Champagne: For me, I spend less time talking, but every time I talk there's more. Traction, if you want to. And the word traction comes from the word at traction. So to at attract create traction means that the, the, the rail is holding the wheels of the train.
It's on the rail. You're not derailing from the value of your work. So to the extent that you spent a bit more time preparing. Unless in execution at the beginning that you execute, when you execute, you have feedback based on the right benchmark and the be the best, I guess, parameters that you set for yourself.
That's where the targeting, the preparation and the targeting comes into play. So when you call you are. Predispose for success because you've done everything [00:19:00] to enhance the possibilities, to increase the possibilities and the probabilities. And when that happens, there's nothing more joyful than calling someone,
and when he, or she respond and they say, yeah, actually we, we are just in the middle of doing that. And it has been on our agenda. You feel elation, you feel so useful, you feel so relevant. You feel so useful is really the word. Instrumental is the word. And that gives you a lot of self confidence because, and you calm down because you don't have to deal with the uncertainty because he or she has validated that your call was worth it.
So, if you don't prepare and you don't get the worthy validation, you just create self-doubt and self-doubt in your hearts are going to affect your voice the way in which you [00:20:00] approach someone, the willingness to lift the phone and moments of precarity, or, you know, dubiousness, you're not sure. That's what I think is lacking is we don't prepare well enough.
I had not had I not prepared six days a week, for years, I would not have gotten my silver medal at the PanAm championships in a moment of unrest at 34 degrees Celsius in the sun of Cuba on a velodrome that's very, very, very hot.
Marcus Cauchi: Yeah.
Denis Champagne: I could have cooked eggs on a roof of my little passion where I hid under the shade.
So, same thing with the best calls I've made. There's so much joy in it. Not just because you think that you can earn income, but you earn income because you help the.
Marcus Cauchi: The income is a byproduct. This is why, again, in the interview with Nadja Komnenic, a couple of weeks back, what was really interesting was [00:21:00] how the realization that money is not the motivator. Metrics are not the motivator. Metrics,
don't motivate almost anyone that I know what they do is they create undue pressure. You want the outcome? You want the result, but I, I think far too often solutions are paid. Without really thinking about the real consequences of having purchased them and the result that you want, training being a classic example, there are so many different stakeholders in buying training.
You've got the poor SAP users who end up having to sit through some, uh, weird ed ed train, being fed from a fire hose. You have the managers who send their people on training because they want them fixed. You have L and D who are more interested in how much they remember. And whether or not the needle moves HR, who is probably looking at how much work is going to be on their plate.
Uh, having to replace a third of those people or half of those people within six [00:22:00] months. And then you've got leadership that is saying to their shareholders, we're gonna do an impossible number and then got finance bleeding along the way as well. And all of them have different vested interests, and none of them are focused on the one outcome, which is, does it make our sales.
Ebbing house forgetting curve
Denis Champagne: Yeah, well, there is the ebbing house forgetting curve. Have you, have you ever heard
Marcus Cauchi: tell the audience about it? Cause they may not be familiar with it?
Denis Champagne: Well, it's, it's really a, a concept that over time there's a tendency to forget more and more. Imagine that we only retain a very small percentage of it.
So that training or coaching, my opinion is more training than coaching. Uh, it's more coaching than training, sorry, because coaching changes behavior. That's what we want versus training is more of the sharing of the information.
Marcus Cauchi: Well, this really speaks to another very important factor here. Which is that most managers who think they coach don't coach, they [00:23:00] do a lot of telling and hero, um, you know, playing the hero.
But the reality is unless you galvanize the middle management layer to deliver operational coaching, which means coaching on the job in the moment at the point of need, the coaching is never gonna happen because the traditional model of. Requires privacy. It requires a safe space. It requires time that doesn't work for managers.
It works for executives. That's great, but managers need something that's down and dirty. They can roll up their sleeves and then they can help their people. So that they're not always the bottleneck. They're not the ones solving the problem, but next to no money or efforts placed on those people, they get about 3% of the global training.
Denis Champagne: Correct.
And that goes back to the mindset I talked about earlier with the upper management who don't understand, they need education and education, the goal of education from my [00:24:00] mentor. One of my mentors in Japan, Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, who was a philosopher and a geographer who wrote a book called the Geography of Life, spoke about education,
being the purpose of education is appreciation. So to the extent that appreciation comes from the word, appreciate, appreciate means a price. Give it a price, give it a value. Precious means a precious stone is a diamond, right? It has value. So the purpose of upper management is to give everything that's necessary to your team, your soldiers, to be the best trained soldiers.
Uh, appreciate, describe value. Exactly. It's upper management need to take on a paradigm shift. I think there are some people who need to change their position and we need new leaders. As someone has told me a paradigm shift, but we're not gonna get into that because I believe that, you know, being [00:25:00] myself a boomer, admittedly
so, I learned from the younger trainers and coaches, uh, I'm impressed with the intelligence, the emotional intelligence, the far too many times technical intelligence.
Marcus Cauchi: Mm-hmm .
Denis Champagne: There are people who care and it it's gotta come to a decision that you wanna do well in this, there's no merit in just accumulating,
you know, material wealth. When you hit my age, you start looking back, you say, did I create value? Did, did I make a difference in people's lives? And so it's a value based decision, but, um, for sure there are smart, young caring people out there that are, and we need to nurture that you and I given our, our,
Marcus Cauchi: Vulnerable age. So carry on with TEAMMS so so T is Targeting.
Denis Champagne: T is Targeting E obviously is Execution [00:26:00] because without execution, there's nothing.
Marcus Cauchi: Of course.
Denis Champagne: So once you've spent a lot of time, you're prepared, you've gone through the crafting of various. Messaging narratives, discourse pieces that you can naturally integrate in you.
You don't wanna make people robots. You want to make them caring, professional, knowledgeable sales people. So they must be able to express that that why is practicing is the. Practicing is the key.
Marcus Cauchi: So again, I couldn't agree more, but one of the things that flabbergast me is the number of times people go on training and then there's no practice.
There's no reinforcement and coaching needs practice as well. One of the things that, uh, again, I, you know, full disclosure, I, I work with this company and I've deliberately gone out and caught working with them because unless the skill is practice and practice and [00:27:00] practice repeatedly in a safe environment in multiple different ways.
You're not really gonna get mastery of that skill. And what's really important about operational coaching is what you're doing is you're taking a moment in time or a moment of communication in the sale where I. A sales person may be tripping over when they're talking about money or a price increase or introducing a new product or selling something that maybe we are not known for.
And we are trying to displace an incumbent where they struggle with those moments. They need to practice that stuff. And it's unfair of senior management to assume that these people are born into this stuff. No one pops out their mother's womb and bang. All of a sudden you're able to, you know, to sell what you can do when you pop out your mother's womb is scream, vomit and poo a lot.
That's what you come out with. There is no such thing as a, a natural born salesperson. It is an acquired skill it's learned. Now you may have a propensity. [00:28:00] But you need to invest in your people and they have a really difficult job and thrown them to the wolves is irresponsible. I mean, it goes beyond that it's immoral, but the irresponsibility and the waste of your shareholder's money is called -
Denis Champagne: well, the irresponsibility is the blinded blindedness outright blindedness of the upper management to not see that sales really at the very end of the day
is the revenue producing machine.
Marcus Cauchi: Yeah.
Denis Champagne: Why would you disparately not consider I've had discussions with executives so, well, we can't fit it into the budget. I say, let's look at how you're budgeting because between putting money into my coaching and getting the proper nutritional kind of counseling about my eating, to attain the best performance on track on my bike and the training on the gym with a [00:29:00] coach, that's gonna teach me how to squat and deadlift and overhead press and bench press properly to be super strong.
Uh, if I'm not getting investing in that, even I remember Brian Orser back in the 1980s, late eighties, when I was a squash coach in a club and Brian Orser was the reigning world figure skating champion and came to the gym. And I had, uh, on the squash court a little game with him to help him. He says, I've decided to put more money into my sports psychologist in preparation for the world world championships than.
He was like Brian Boitano another American figure skater and him were in heads to heads to become the world champion in figure skating and figure skating is extremely intense. He spent more of his budget on sports psychology to prepare his mind. So in sales, we disparage, we, we, [00:30:00] I there's something about
infantry soldiers that reminds me of the soldiers, the sales rep, and we put the hands of young people with, with, or without a university degree to call on to executives and to call on directors when they're, they haven't even had their belly button dried up yet. Yeah, they. Look, they're accountable for bringing that to a conversation.
Where do they get training? It is irresponsible. There are so many management, upper management teams who are begrudgingly or disparagingly, not training their reps the way they should. And could I just, I'm blown away by that. I'm lucky. Lucky to have clients. I have. I'm lucky I have clients. Actually after this, our interview with you, I have a call with my client where [00:31:00] I start four new reps in South America.
And they have with me held two years now, I've been training these people. The results are there, but it's the people, every single rep I coach are not taught the same way. The problems we talk about. Yes, but they are unique in their dis discourse and narrative.
How the managers are then taking on the mantle of coach?
Marcus Cauchi: So I'm really curious what happens when you hand over
those reps to their managers, how the managers are then taking on the mantle of coach?
Denis Champagne: Well, I had lunch yesterday with the manager who's from South America who happens to be in Canada for this week and goes back to CA Sacramento, California, where he lives and back and forth. And I said, we and I are gonna have weekly calls.
Every Friday morning, we're gonna have an accountability report and I'm gonna tell you what has been so you can observe carefully during the week, the changes and validate or invalidate those changes as you see them through time, because it's a 10 [00:32:00] week program with me.
Marcus Cauchi: This is really interesting. So one, one of the companies that I worked with mobile practice has developed an app precisely for that purpose, because what we are trying to do is find a way to get people, to practice those moments so that they appropriate those skills.
But also to create a measurable, tangible return on effort as well as investment because every time they practice and then they eventually save the recording, it might only be 30 seconds or two minutes, but they can see their own progress. And we know this because on average it takes four or five takes before they save it.
now what that tells you is they become more aware of their own performance. And that's really critical because you need to see yourself being able to use this stuff for you to implement it. Otherwise you don't have the courage to try it, and you need to be able to coach through the manager. So you, as the coach can coach the manager, shadow coaching on how [00:33:00] they coach their people.
Denis Champagne: You've spoken exactly you're reading my mind. I know you're very, uh, very attached to, and, and kind of insensitive to that. Uh, Marcus, I was about to say that that I've included in my project, the financing for the hours I spent with coach. So that every week I suddenly in a very kind way, encourage, encourage means to give courage to
the coach, the trainer, the salesman manager, who is going to be there after I am no longer there to adopt a mindset and make it his or her own so that he will be also coach indirectly and the way I'm thinking so that he can start thinking of himself as a coach and not just a manager, because as you know, there are accountability factors.
But he's very, very positive. I, I had a very good call with him and a good lunch [00:34:00] and, uh, he's super excited about having me on, so that, that just in and of itself, the fact that he creates an air of expectancy for the success of his team and we will all he and I together, we will take care of our people.
Yeah. Really care for the reps because repping and selling is not an easy task. There are so many different unpredictable issues and components that to create a funnel of caring and support and drive like those tennis players, especially those Ukrainian tennis players at the Indian Wells in the New Wells open tennis championships right now are dealing with short of now having a caring coach.
I can just imagine how it is with their families in Ukraine. Parenthetically, of course. So you need that. You often need a coach when things are going more difficult, but you need them also [00:35:00] when they're going well.
Marcus Cauchi: Absolutely. Cuz that's probably where you start getting complacent. I was, uh, coaching one of my clients today and last year, the stuff that we embedded that really made them successful, he stopped doing cuz he was being successful.
He paid the price for it. Now, what we've done is we've created a spreadsheet to, uh, identify how much that cost him, because it's a, it's an, it's a luxury for his ego. If he wants to take the easy course, it's gonna cost him 42,000 pounds so he can do it, but he knows there's a price attached and that's what it's gonna cost.
In fact, this, this year it'll cost and double. Because his sales have doubled. So it's gonna cost him 84,000
Denis Champagne: yes. Well coming back to the team's process. Yeah. So the target, the execution, yeah. Where you get the looping feedback and you continue to reinforce that a is another thing that is missing grossing and sales [00:36:00] processes is accountable for activity, which means the number one tech's
that is being misused and neglected is the CRM. The CRM is your dynamic database and system of record for everything that you have done with someone, how ne negligent is it to not properly? Populate the information with integrity, which means in the moment where you're executing the task, that you populate that information right away so that you can retain and really preserve properly the clo- the integrity of the information based on the activity in the moment.
Because if you wait two hours, you will only have about 50% of the information fresh in your mind. that's why Zig Zigler, uh, would always say isn't it the best moment to make a [00:37:00] decision that when it's fresh in your mind, because if we go back and we come back in two days, you will have forgotten everything.
Is there anything else that I have missed in the information you need to make it proper decision today? Yeah, that was his, one of his closes and it's true, but it's logical. So T E A, M is Measure. Measuring means to assess, to analyze, to decipher, to infer, to seek, to understand, to appraise, to assess, to evaluate the information you just populated.
In other words, if you say the person asked to call back in two weeks, what are your thoughts on what he, or she says what the person says and what the person is saying and how do they. Are two things and how you say it as well. So you have to be listening with a capital L to that person. So [00:38:00] that's measure and M the other M is Manage, which means to run it, to administer it, to conduct it, to use it correctly.
So M and the last one is S for Success. Success means, what does it mean to you? So you go back to the T. So the S is attached to the T go back as a loop feedback and say the targets I had set for myself. Did I attain them? So it's a loop T E A M M S. Target, Execute, Account for activity, Measure to manage, Successfully.
And at the end of the day, prospecting is a team's effort, poetically speaking. Manage successfully.
How do they keep clear about the difference between rejection and refusal?
Marcus Cauchi: So given the challenges that are coming down the pipe beginning of QT, 2022, what one bit of [00:39:00] advice would you give to a salesperson? Who is looking down the barrel of a, to OUS market, lots of uncertainty. How do they keep clear about the difference between rejection and refusal?
Denis Champagne: Rejection is something that is for the personal ego. It has nothing to do with you as a person. They don't know you. If you look at refusal as an offer, if you offered something and they refuse the offer, that's it. There's not a rejection. If your wife says we can't no longer live together, that's rejection.
Because they know enough. They have enough information to decide this no longer. It's like, uh, CD ROM that ejects the actual CD inside the reader. There's some anomaly, there's something that doesn't match. So rejection is more of [00:40:00] a person. Very. Intrinsic to you. Refusal is an objective view, so, oh, okay. That person refuses.
Then you may wanna, if you have that posture of proper preparation in your work and you've targeted correctly, your work I've I, I was refused yesterday. I had two refusals yesterday. Mm-hmm two emails from someone who after consideration. I question the seriousness of their consideration, which is what I wanna challenge a little bit to make sure that they're, they're crystal clear on their decision.
I have no problem with people who are not at this moment, predisposed to engage in the purchasing because we have to look at selling as a buying cycle, not as a selling cycle.
Marcus Cauchi: Absolutely.
Denis Champagne: We spend too much time on the selling and not on the buying. We are in a process of helping people. We should be their partner in buying.
So we have to understand their journey. Very few [00:41:00] people really know how to buy properly. So I always challenge the buying decision and not so much what I did or did not do because I care enough about them. Make sure that you're clear on this decision now. So rejection is really for someone who doesn't understand that the, and probably they didn't do a good job enough and they haven't put their attention to their job.
So rejection versus refusal. I try to always look at it. And why did they refuse the offer I placed in front of them versus they don't like me, I'm not worthy those kinds of, you know, dark, negative, not useful thoughts are not going to help you get ahead.
Marcus Cauchi: Mm-hmm
Denis Champagne: you play a tennis match or play a squash match and you lose.
Then you have to ask yourself what happened, but we spend too much time on the negative. Talk about win loss reviews in sales. [00:42:00] We don't spend enough time. Ian McLachlan from Australia.
Marcus Cauchi: Yeah.
Denis Champagne: Uh, brilliant guy. He says spend more because he does win loss reviews and he says, spend more time on win reviews. Let's look at what we did well.
And to continue to replicate the pattern of success, not replicate the pattern and focus that, which you focus on amplifies. So it's, I, it's better to focus on the wins. And replicate the winning patterns, Pancho Gonzales a great tennis player. He says, I decided to focus on my strengths and none of my weaknesses.
Oh, it's a, it's a, it's a mindset.
How can people get a hold of you?
Marcus Cauchi: Denis, sadly, we've come to time. I have to jump onto another call, which I'm heartbroken about cuz I could talk to you for hours. How can people get a hold of you?
Denis Champagne: Well, Denis, D E N I S champagne like the bubbly stuff on LinkedIn. lotuscomm. L O [00:43:00] T U S C O M M .com my website. And, uh, those are the best two ways.
If you had a golden ticket and you could go back and you could whisper in the ear of the idiot age 23, what one piece of advice would you give him?
Marcus Cauchi: Excellent. So if you had a golden ticket and you could go back and you could whisper in the ear of the idiot Denis, age 23, what one piece of advice would you give him?
Denis Champagne: Seek a mentor early in life.
Marcus Cauchi: That's good advice. Really good advice. Excellent.
Denis Champagne: A mentor that you care about that knows that cares about you.
Marcus Cauchi: Yeah, it has to be two way cuz that that kind of relationship is incredibly intense and very intimate.
You, you can't have, uh, trust without intimacy.
Denis Champagne: Correct.
Marcus Cauchi: Excellent. Denis Champagne. Thank you so much. This has been been brilliant
Thank you, Marcus. It's uh, I hope we will repeat this at some point.
Denis Champagne: We will. We will. We will definitely. So this is Marcus Cauchi signing off once again from the Inquisitor podcast. If you've enjoyed this conversation, God [00:44:00] knows,
if you haven't you're dead, then please like comment, share and tag somebody who could benefit from it. Particularly senior management who really need to wake up about managing the top of the funnel, the targeting please really critical and then coaching real coaching, not this halfassed attempt at telling people and pretending it's coaching.
So in the meantime, if you wanna get ahold of me, firstname.lastname@example.org take care. Bye bye.