Episode EightyFive

If You’re Always Closing, You’re Probably Losing

Guest: Josh Jordan , Founder of preHIRED

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About This Episode

You’ve seen the movies. Coffee’s for closers, right?

It’s a fun concept, a bit tongue-in-cheek. You close a deal, bump chests, and feel accomplished. The problem is, some salespeople actually mean it when they say “Always be closing.”

Instead, Josh Jordan, Founder of preHIRED, says you should “Always be clarifying.” It doesn’t matter if you close a deal if you don’t know why you did.

We recently interviewed him about the difference. Here’s what he had to say.

Two Schools of Thought

Always be closing is a concept that’s alive and well in sales today. But if you start off with this mindset, you’re going to lose a lot of deal.

Why? Because it’s a selfish mindset. It’s focused on what you can get from another person.

Always be clarifying, on the other hand, comes down to the answer to this question: Do you know why they did or did not buy?

Even if you successfully close the deal, and you can’t tell why, that means you were just an order taker and they were going to buy anyway.

How Do You Get Clarity?

Getting clarity from a buyer is simple. You can break it down into four components:

  1. Where are they?
  2. Where do they want to be?
  3. How can you get them from point A to point B?
  4. Do they want to be a part of what you’re doing?

This is the simplest way to explain a sales process. If you do a good job as a sales rep, the ones who are a good fit with you will work with you, and those who aren’t will go somewhere else. That’s fine.

You don’t need to close someone you can’t help anyway.

The Wrong Approach

Josh has had a lot of good managers in his career. He also had one who wasn’t.

At one point he was on a SaaS startup as one of the first sales hires. This particular manager was an interim sales manager. They had weekly meetings to go over their numbers.

Josh would confirm that he’d followed exactly what the manager had said to do, but he wasn’t hitting the quota. The input was correct, but the output wasn’t where it needed to be. What should he do?

The manager said, “Get back on the phone!”

Did you catch that? The manager’s answer to the fact that things weren’t working was to say, “Do more of the same.”

Some would call that the clinical definition of insanity.

Josh ended up leaving the company, and two and a half months later, it went out of business.

What Gets Measured Gets Mastered

More “hype” won’t lead to more sales if you don’t have clarity.

What gets measured gets mastered. Everything else is mediocre bullshit.

If you want to get really good at everything in the sales process, you’ve got to start measuring everything.

How preHIRED Teaches Clarity

When Josh came up with his“science-based sales” methodology, it came from three areas:

  1. His background as a sales trainer working for companies like Dale Carnegie.
  2. Distilling those concepts and combining them with experience working at tech companies in real life.
  3. Interviewing thousands of sales managers in tech. The questions were all around what they were doing to crush it, what makes for their best performers, what led to good months and bad.

From those, Josh developed three pillars of his training:

  1. Tools
  2. Skills
  3. Workflows

Most people glaze over the third pillar. But it doesn’t matter if you know how to overcome a few objections here and there . . .  if you don’t manage your time well and have a system or playbook for every scenario, you’re wasting time.

Through these pillars, they can turn a C player into an A player in six weeks, or an A player into an A++ player in the same amount of time.

Check out the episode to hear Josh dive more into each of the pillars.

This post is based on a podcast interview with Josh Jordan from preHIRED. To hear this episode, and many more like it, you can subscribe to The Sales Engagement Podcast.

If you don’t use iTunes, you can listen to every episode here.

About The Podcast

The Sales Engagement podcast is the #1 podcast focused on engaging your customers and prospects in the modern sales era. This show features real-life stories and best practices from revenue leaders doing the job day in and day out, in a casual, radio-like talk show.

Each episode features modern tactics, strategies, hacks, and tips to get the most out of your sales engagement strategy and help you navigate the next generation of sales. You’ll find energetic talks that will provide you with real actionable value around building meaningful connections and creating a better selling experience through authentic conversations that you can measure.

The Sales Engagement podcast is here to help B2B sales leaders, customer success leaders, and marketing leaders innovate and usher in the next era of modern sales by building pipeline, up-selling customers, and ultimately generating more revenue with more efficiency.

Hosted by Joe Vignolo, Senior Content Managing Editor at Outreach, and Mark Kosoglow, Vice President of Sales at Outreach.

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