Friday, May 18, 2018

Friday Feature Book Review: Japan Sales Mastery (Lessons from 30 years in Japan) : Dr. Greg Story 日本セールスマスター(日本で30年間のレッスン): グレッグストーリー

Business only starts, when a sale is made, so this book is a nice surprise. It can be enjoyed in 2 main ways. If you need to learn how to sell as an entrepreneur or in a new role you take on, this is perfect. However, if you already sell, it also teaches you new ways to sell to customers or clients that you may not sell to well today. Can you sell to all 5 types of customers or clients, or just 1 or 2? Having been in sales for most of my career, learning new ways to recognize customers I was weak selling to, was a wonderful surprise. 

Many of these proven techniques originally come from Dale Carnegie. Principles that are over 100 years old, with over 50 years of success in Japan. If Warren Buffet, perhaps the world's most successful investor to date, claims his Dale Carnegie course changed his life, and upgraded his business skills, who am I to argue? Could this even be a basic core reason as to why he is a billionaire, and I am not, at least not yet. Although set in Japan, this is more about international sales. It easily can be a guide on how to sell to a buyer of a different nationality. This is mainly about how to assume less, and listen more, and then discover needs you can provide.

Sales is a process, and can be learned young or old, and the basic building blocks are explained in a very clear fashion. I thought this book would be about selling only in Japan, but I was wrong there too. It is more a guide on how to better perform within international sales of any kind. I learned how you can assume less, listen more, and really learn want your customer wants. That was the true value in this book. The author does a great job at giving clear examples on how many sales people fail to close deals. More importantly, you learn how to improve, get better and make more sales more often. 

I never thought about the 5 kinds of very different buyers described before, or how to best appeal to each of them. Each buyer has a preferred way of being sold to. Often one sales person tries only one or two ways only to sell to a wide variety of types. 5 are below, but there are many others.

1) Visual types => How does this look to you?
2) Audio types => How does that sound so far?
3) Tactile types => Can you get your hands around this?
4) Logical types => Does this seem logical to you so far?
5) Emotional types => How do you feel about this so far?

What you learn most out of this book, is what you may be doing wrong. If you can learn more about the types of buyers, you can adjust your style, and sell more often. For anybody who sells any amount, selling more is always the goal. Many of the tips help you realize where you may need to increase any weaknesses in your sales skills. You can always get better, but I never considered you could get better with customer types you never closed before. That is a great realization moment.

The Top 3 Takeaways from this book that impact any reader are:

1) For top sales results, there must be time to listen. Instead of first selling by speaking fast and overloading buyers with facts, listen to what buyers need first. Listen first, reply after.

2) The more you can listen, even as much as 80% of a conversation from a buyer, the more you can sell. You can be more clear with any solution if you know what the buyer needs. You can refine a much better sales solution more often & more quickly.

3) The mindset you need to sell requires work. Any top sales person needs to find ways to keep any sales effort improving. This can be by finding better satisfaction from proposing worthwhile solutions for buyers.

The amount of solid ideas on how to improve your selling ability, or start a solid process for the first time is excellent. It performs both types of sales instruction very clearly. No matter how good you are at sales, there is always something to learn. If already learned, then maybe tweaked in a new way for a new kind of buyer. As a process, sales does evolve, and the best sales people evolve along with it. 

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