Dave Mattson- Who You Know or What You Know in Sales?


Kevin Price, Host of the Price of Business on Business Talk 1110 AM KTEK (on Bloomberg’s home in Houston) recently interviewed Dave Mattson.


About the interviewee



Dave Mattson is the CEO and president of Sandler Training. A self-proclaimed “introvert,” Mattson is testament to the Sandler methodology that stands firm on its belief that through techniques and reinforcement anyone can become successful in sales. In his 25 years with the company, Mattson rose to become CEO and president, oversaw the expansion of the brand to 28 countries, spent thousands of hours training sales forces and leadership teams and wrote several Amazon and Wall Street Journal acclaimed best-selling books on the Sandler selling system, like Sandler Success Principles, The Sandler Rules and Magical People Skills.



Tell me about your firm (number of employees, location, type of companies you work with, etc.).



Sandler Training is a global leader in sales training. With more than 220 training centers located throughout the world and nearly 500 Sandler Certified Trainers, Sandler Training helps grow the bottom line of thousands of small, mid-sized and Fortune-ranked companies every year.



What type and size of companies do you have as clients?


The short answer is that Sandler Training works with companies of all sizes in a wide variety of verticals and industries. Sandler Enterprise Sales is equipped to take on the biggest companies in the world while many of the Sandler Training centers offer a niche and localized approach to companies of all sizes.



What comes to mind when you see this topic?



When it comes to being successful in sales, what you know is more important than who you know. While it’s good to have friends in high places, those relationships can only take you so far. Like the old saying goes, give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. By that I mean, a salesperson needs to rely on more than their friends and contacts in the business. They must learn behaviors and techniques that will advance their sales performance. Once learned and enforced, this approach will serve sales professionals well whether they’re interacting with someone they know or when they’re cold calling new prospects.



What are the best practices when it comes to this issue?



At the core of every selling/buying relationship, there needs to be a strong focus on bonding and rapport. Your client needs to trust you. They need to know that you are invested in their business – for more than the commission – and that you genuinely care about the service you are providing. As salespeople, our goal is to alleviate pain and solve problems. Sandler recommends the following best practice to help ensure a long-standing relationship:

  • Establish a strong rapport by getting to know what the client will consider success
  • Understand their goals
  • Learn their interests
  • Use up-front contracts to set a clear agenda before a meeting
  • Have candid conversations so there’s no mystification about timelines and expectations
  • Deliver on what you promised and both parties will reap rewards



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