Tom Schaff: Experienced CEO advisor with a demonstrated history of working with Private Equity Firms. Strong business development professional skilled in strategy, Whale Hunting, tactical selling, and effective sales force hiring. Tom Schaff is someone who:
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- Had to start from ZERO during Covid and won 7 figures in a mere 45 days,
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Good. It’s so good. This is what makes you so brilliant are these ideas that are just so out of the box. They’re just so big that that’s how you get these huge success stories. Hi, ideas are in the box. They’re getting, um, sometimes you don’t have the budget to do that. So you might wonder shark. You put on this shark and you put a message in the shark. Have you ever gotten a shark in the mail? Never. They tend to be open. I’m going to choose to laugh and I’m going to choose to create joy. I’m going to choose to create wealth and everywhere I go, I’m going to celebrate that.
Whereas other people go to work, I go to play, but everybody Amanda Holmes here, CEO of check-ins international. And it is my honor and privilege to have Tom Schaff here. Tom shaft to me is one of the top three most brilliant strategists in my world. Whenever I am in a real bind, it is Tom that I call. And I’m so grateful that you took this interview, Tom, because people need to understand.
How to effectively deploy a sales strategy and you have a gift for innovation that I know very little have. I mean, I’m reading your bio here in one of them. It says that as a co-founder of solution people, you had half of business, week’s top 50 most innovative companies in the world as clients. I know that you had clients with us, uh, with my father and Tony, for brands like Intuit and Jiffy lube and us bank and Costco, and the list goes on and on.
And just to also say that you bring you everywhere you go, you also have this amazing amount of information about baseball, and you’ve bought the field of dreams and all of this wonderful things that are coming up because of the gift that you have with sales. I’m so grateful to have you here. Thank you.
Well, it’s great to be here before we start. I have to say some, um, you know, I knew your dad and. I would tell me, get together. He would show pictures of you and Jordan, like every single time, I’d say, look at how good looking they are. My kids are so good looking and look at how smart they are. And he would play a song that you wrote it say, isn’t she amazing?
And, um, as I watched, you know, for the last nine years or eight and a half, since you’re probably past, um, he would, he would say, look at my kids. I’m proud of them. And he would talk about all the great things you’re doing. And so, um, it’s great to be here. I’m proud of you and you are extremely gifted and you’ve done wonderful things.
Not only to continue your brand, but I think you bring, um, a purity in a wonderfulness that your father had. He wouldn’t always release. And, uh, it’s, it’s really wonderful to see you come into your own and leverage the family legacy, but not be confined to it. So. Ah, that’s amazing. You make me want to cry.
Okay. But today we’re talking about one crying in baseball.
Well, today we’re covering dream 100 and I’m so glad that you’re here because people get stuck on the very first step. Who is your dream? 100. What would be your advice to so many businesses that have realized, wow, this is so great. I can get a really big client and it’ll change my world and then I’ll get 28 more of them.
And then I’ll build out my hundred list right here and I’ll go after them. What, what is your advice to somebody that’s trying to build that list right now? Yeah. Um, and I don’t mean to like cut away from the family religion, but maybe it’s not dream 100, maybe the a hundred is the problem that it’s so burdensome.
Um, maybe. 20% of anything gives us 80% of the value and maybe it’s 20 people. And if we take that and say, 20% of 20 is 4% and 80% of 80 is 64% maybe for give a 64% of the value. Like maybe it’s who do I really want. So, you know, when I look at it, um, you know, one of your dads, if you look at his dream 100, I don’t know that after he got out of working for Charlie in the advertising business, that he did a lot of hundred personally, he had like a dream one treats, Jay Abraham, you know, then after that chase Tony Robbins for 17 years, he had pigheaded discipline and the, the, uh, Udacity and tenacity.
You know, whatever other words that can end with city, right? I have to get, uh, you know, Les brown to help me out with this. Um, but he had that kind of drive and he could follow up on people. The average person does not have that certainty. So, um, here’s what I advice. It might start off with who do you love?
Who do you love spending time with? Who are your people? Look at it instead of a dream 100, look at it as these are my tribe. These are the people that are my people. Like there are all these people on the world. I was put on the earth to serve these people. I call it humble swagger. And here it is, I can’t help everybody.
That’s humble. I can’t help everyone. But when it comes to these people, there’s nobody that can help these people like, like me. I can’t help everybody, but the people I can help. Moral obligation for me to get in front of him. It would be like stealing if they didn’t get me. So I will pay the price for my people.
And, um, so that’s a good place to start. Like who do you love? Who do you get out of bed? Who will you work day and night for? And think it’s a joy and a gift and an honor to serve. That might be a good, a pretty good place to stay. Maybe you’re not that a ball. Yeah. I love that prompt. I was just going to ask, do you have a live example of this?
Like here’s a client that I did this for or even yourself? Well, I’m doing it now. Um, so, well, I’ll give you an example. Um, for, since I stopped working with your dad, you know, um, your dad, uh, gets sick and, uh, 11, uh, about this time, um, and then passed away on August 12th, I think, uh, uh, I remember the dates for way 13th, August 12th.
They, they, it on your birthday’s August. Uh, everybody, third two. Um, so I remember all of the time, but, um, today is March 12th and on this state, the world ended, the world stopped this day, a year ago on March 11th. I had my whole 2020 sold out. I didn’t have a moment in my calendar. Everything was sold out, but in all my corporate contracts, I have 30 day outs, 30 day outs that if they’re not doing the work, I can leave because I don’t want to drag somebody.
It never occurred to me that the world would end and people would opt out because they had fear. And on March 12th, as I was in Indianapolis with my buddy, Tom CERSI, we started seeing people leave the hotels because the big 12 big 10 tournament was. And then other things were canceled. And then it was like a power out where everything in the world was shut down.
And the next week I started getting calls and private equity said, gotta keep our powder dry. We don’t know how it’s going. We’re going to take her 30 days. And our 30 days by March 20th, I realized that after April 20th, I would have no clients, zero revenue. And that I got to start over the senior in high school and another one in college.
I’m like, what am I going to do? And for me, I sat back and said, where’s the opportunity in the problem in the world. People are going to die are going to be fear about dying. I expected there would be significantly more market volatility, then there’s. Our market’s actually gone up, which is weird to me, but I mean, the world’s falling apart and stock market goes up, but didn’t make sense to me, but it did happen.
But I thought, you know what? There’s going to be volatility. And people are going to worry about dying and the rich aren’t going to get poor, but they are going to be more exposed. So I said, we’re going to go after the rich and, uh, on March 12th that afternoon, immediately, I said to Tom Searcy, I’m only going to train wealth advisors.
I’m only going to train insurance people. They’re number one. I said, that is all I’m going to do. I am going to pivot right now. And then I went after the top insurance advisors, I didn’t say who are people I needed to create cashflow because I didn’t have any. So rather than go after corporations, that there might be a sales side.
Yeah. I said, who are individuals? And then I made my list of top advisors and then I asked for referrals and then I went after them. And I rebuilt a practice from nothing to seven figures in 45 days. Um, I’m happy to say right now, I bet you like, for example, at mass mutual, I bet you, I have 25 of the top a hundred advisors today.
Um, and every day today I got one, a 30 year old did Chicago, Michael Schoolcraft. He sold a $432,000 insurance premium. He made more money yesterday. Then he hasn’t any year in his life. He’s the ninth person this year, it’s March and nine of those people have sold more this year than they ever have in a year.
I created a psychographic. What kind of people coachable, not satisfied have a reason to win some of it’s to avoid failure. Some of it’s not to be my parents, some of it’s to please my parents, some of it’s to be, you know, have options that might never parents had. One of them it’s to take care of my parents.
But so a lot of parents kind of issues, but like people that care, people that love people that are service people that are willing to be coached, people that I could tell the truth to and people that wanted to win. And so here’s the thing that, that the dream 100 can evolve. I started with let’s get top ones and get referred, bought, you know, small companies, your hundred doesn’t refer you up.
It refers you down. So start big, but start big on where you can make a difference. I’m I’m happy that if a person gives me a dollar, they get at least 10. Um, so, you know, and by the way, I made a list, I can’t do that for everyone. I’m not magic. I’m not that good. I’m good for one. Good for it. And I’m not for other people.
And there are plenty of people who I’m not right for, but the ones I’m right for, there’s going to be magic. So I spend my time there and if they won’t get the return, I’m out, I changed my demographic. I changed my second graphic. Now here’s the good news we’re coming out of it. The world’s evolving and I have people that are winning everywhere.
And now those individuals, it’s general agents with 600 agents that are calling me. It’s the presidents of companies. And now having worked and dominating the biggest company in the industry. Well, now my dream 100 is interesting because I have social proof. Um, I do some work with Bob Cialdini and Bob sheldini said that when people are like looking to make a decision, uh, they look to a.
And they look to social proof if you’re not sure. Just think about how you buy at Amazon. I want to buy Himalayan salt. What do I do? I don’t know which one sold the most, which has the most stars. What do I do? I look at? Who’s got the most, I read the ones on the top. Then I read the ones that have zero stars, one star, right?
I can live with that. Let’s go for this. And then I’m done. I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about Himalayan pink, salt, um, right. When you have the top people, the rest of the people want to find out why they’re doing business with you, but it’s not about having the top. Cause if you go off to the top and you don’t have a gift for them, they have nothing to save for you.
You’ve got to underwrite your spots. Sometimes we make our list. Um, we’re a little desperate and it’s like, who is proximity? You know, it could be, we make our lists out of ego. What will make me look good? I did that when I was I’m 30 years old to start a business. I just said, let’s go after, uh, the top 30 companies, uh, that are innovative companies.
So we can say we have them. I did that out of like, mine need to be compelled by that. I don’t really care about that so much anymore, but I did them. Um, it could be, what are you passionate about? Um, I lost a job once I was advertising. Um, and, uh, we, we lost an account and I was the young man on the totem pole and I got, I got sacked.
I register makeup. This wasn’t dream 100, but it was the same, uh, uh, advisor, uh, in the employment space said make a list of a hundred companies that you believe in. So I went in my house and I had lots of books. I’d pick up a book and a page through it, you know, in search of excellence and passion for excellence, Tom Peters, I’d say I could sell that.
I could sell that. I pick up things. I make my list of a hundred companies. I print it out and it says jobs, you know, places comm shop would like to work page one through, I put it on a word processor that was like a typewriter back in the day. Uh, um, okay. So I had, I had 20 copies and I put it into my briefcase.
There was this thing called a briefcase back then we didn’t have computers or backpacks. Um, I’m walking around without a job, trying to go get a job. And I run into a guy that I, uh, Took all of his money in student government. I cut his budgets. When I was a freshman in college, I ran into him on the street in Minneapolis and he said, you know, I walked by him and he did the same thing.
Turn around. He goes, are you Tom shop? I said, are you Brian Wilson? I said, what are you doing? Spend a while? And it was kind of nice given, we didn’t have the greatest experience about seven or 10 years earlier. He says, what are you up to? I said, I’m looking for a job. What are you looking for? I handed him the list.
He looks at the list. Number seven on the list was creative learning international out of Nina, Wisconsin. He said, why do you want to work at creative learning? I said, oh, they have this little gizmo called the pocket innovator. He goes, you, you have one? I go, yeah. Why? And he goes, you’re the only one that bought one.
I go, why do you say that? Cause it’s going bank. I’m like what? So how do you know? He said he had my job in student government the year before he went to school at our school. I said, you’re kidding me. He goes, do you want to meet him? I say, yes. He goes, come to my house in two days for Thanksgiving dinner.
And you know what that on my list, I took over that company. That’s how I got into the creative space. And that guy turned out to be my best man. And in my wedding.
Yup. He’s been, um, no distance of things moves. I still talk to him every week. He spend less time together in the last, uh, maybe five years. But, um, we used to for 20 years inseparable, um, got me to leave my business. I was an advertising guy and I left to join him. Uh, That’s dream 100. It was what, so how did I come up with that?
What do I have a passion for? What would I sell? What the straight face, what companies would I’d like to have on my business card? It could be that simple. It could be what are companies? I have a son, two of them, but one’s a business kit 19. And he’s looking for internships. He’s like, dad, how do you get an internship?
I said, well, there’s a lot of ways to get an internship. Why don’t you start with things you’re interested in Hearthstone. Write that down, write a video game. Right? Like what are you passionate about? My oldest one when he was a kid, he’s an artist now, but, um, he wasn’t sure what he would do. Thought he might be a programmer and he loved taco bell.
He went to taco bell every day. The drive in the drive in at his college was. And, um, are though the restaurant was being reformed rather. So you could only go to the drive-thru. So they went through the, through walking, they said you have to have a car to go through the drive-through. They built a cardboard car.
They went to the drive-through every day in a cardboard car went. Beep beep I swear to God. I said, son send that story to the president of taco bell. You’ll have a job at the headquarters in Irvine, California. Like what are you passionate about? Um, uh, build a dreams. I have a vision for what the field of dreams in Iowa would be.
You know what I did? I said, I said, you know what? I want celebrity investors. So I said, well, who would care? I said, well, Jack Nicholson is the Lakers guy. Right? You and you don’t have to be under a rock to not know that the number one fan, but Blake was Jack Nicholson. Every team has one. So I said, here are the 30 baseball teams who are their top fans.
Then I went through the other room. I had the largest baseball bobblehead collection in the world. I said, what are all the celebrities that have been bubble heads that were given away at a stadium? And I said, okay, if you’re a bubble head and you’ve thrown out the first pitch or sang the national Anthem are considered the face of the franchise, you’re a baseball fan.
Then I checked out their net worth. I said, all people that had a bobblehead that sing the national Anthem or throw out the first pitch and have a net worth of at least $40 million for my people. I now have a dream 233. Those are my. Well, the average person doesn’t care about the field of dreams, a baseball fan with money it’s Jerusalem, you know, it’s sacred ground it’s holy ground.
So that’s what I, that’s how I come up with my lists. Like, what do you care about? What are you passionate about? What turns you on? What do you think will be an adventure? Um, behind me is a little fella, six and a half feet tall named Dwayne Johnson. It occurred to me that he’s literally the biggest star in the world right now.
And he’s also the best page. He made about 230 million and that’s before he started his new show on NBC young, uh, young rock. And he’s about to become the new Marvel character, black Adam. He will be even larger than life in the coming year. Um, he was on the show that I love called ballers. He was a sports agent in Miami and he wore the coolest.
Coolest suits in the world, every suit he’s got, every they’re just ridiculous colors. I saw there was an auction. So I bought all of the wardrobe for the show. I had 40 of Dwayne Johnson suits. This is his velvet tuxedo that he wore to the Emmys complete with his name inside of it. I have
21 sets of his shoes.
So you and I said, I said, this will be fun. Listen, we’ll be fun. I said, what are you going to do with all of that? I am going to carpet bomb, my dream people that are ballers. People that are innovative, that push the edge that are benevolent and good. You know what? I don’t think we’re ever going to see Mr.
Johnson win an academy award, but I’ve never seen a movie that I didn’t enjoy a piece. He’s an entertainer. And what I like about him is his ability to make fun of himself. At the end of the day, he’s a larger than life character who can take a shot at himself. It makes you feel good. He’s family friendly.
Um, you know, you as a dude, you’re admire him as a girl. You’re like, well, look at him. He’s just magnificent. It’s hard to hate the guy. And he’s good. He does good things. He has some big trouble in the world. So I said, you know, I like that. I like this guy who pushes it is always relentless. He’s number one, he physically, you know, pays the price to be physically who he is.
He’s smart, he’s charismatic. So everything they want. So, um, I decided you get attached to worse things. So I made my list of people who will give a darn ballers, the kind of my second draft. And I actually, uh, blessed Saturday, um, wrote a letter with, uh, Jay Abraham. Oh, okay. So Jay and I put together your dad’s former business partner and we crushed out a letter for them.
And I, instead of like these suits, I’m sending a hundred of those six and a half foot cardboard cut out. In six and a half foot boxes, a box is going to come to an executive and I’m going to put so much tape on it that it’ll take a crowbar to open it. There’ll be four people pulling this apart going because the journey is the thing.
It’s not the destination. It’s the journey. It’s the, what is in it. What’s in it. It’s Christmas. They open the thing up and when they get it open, it’ll be like, Hey, stowaway Johnson. Why is Dwayne Johnson here? I must know. One thing in his hand will be a letter. And in the letter it will be, I’m sending you this letter for a big reason.
I’ve sent you the biggest star in the world and the biggest box in the world to tell you the biggest idea in the world. If you’re 20, 20 sucked, it’s not because of COVID it’s because your ideas are. If you want bigger ideas, if you want to get in front of bigger people, you need bigger ideas. Now, if you don’t believe that you’re reading this letter and then it also be a picture of 50 soaps and all these shows and all the stuff, I’ll be like, I’m sending you a picture of the largest collection of Dwayne Johnson memorabilia from my personal collection from ballers, because it represents excellence of going the distance of paying the price and the rewards.
What happened when you refuse to be average? I’m just making this stuff up. I don’t remember what the letter is. This isn’t bad. Right? And then it’s like for the 50 next clients that are retained in order, you will be able to select from my class. His suit from the Amie, his suit from the Oscars, his suit from this, um, and we’ll ship it to you in a mannequin so that every time you look at it, it reminds you of who you could be.
If you would pay the price, my shoes, I’m going to send them a shoe. My dream, 100, I’m going to send out a shoe. I’m sending this shoe to get my foot in the door, but this is no ordinary shoe. First of all, it’s larger than life. And before you throw it out, realize it’s the biggest star in the world shoe.
Why would I do this? Same copy set up the meeting and I’ll give you the other shoe.
So good. This is what makes you so brilliant or these ideas that are just so out of the box. They’re just so big that that’s how you get these huge success stories, ideas, or in the box there.
Sometimes you don’t have the budget to do that. So you wonder shark, you put a shark and you put a message in the shark. Have you ever gotten a shark in the mail? Never. They tend to be open. You know what? Sometimes, sometimes I’m mailed people. I’m going to take out my, I got two garbages by show garbage and my real garbage.
You don’t need to see my real garbage, but this is a garbage. Yeah, you put stamps on this. You can mail this, just like this.
I didn’t know that return address that here, the address here comes a postcard. Wow. So I put all of this on it, right. I put my best CIJ. Then I write my letter. I put up arrow up. I tape it in a plastic sack inside. And the letters all scrunched up. It says, I have sent you bottles. I’ve sent you video emails.
I’ve called I’ve sent voicemail. And it all goes in the garbage. I thought I’d save you a step before I give up. There’s a reason I’m so persistent, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. This is a smaller version of that. Oh, nice. Yeah. So here’s the thing. You can get in front of anyone. If you have a reason, I wouldn’t invest the time or the money.
Um, I got a new one. I, you know, I do well hunting. So I send somebody, the book went on hunting and then after that I send them a quote. So tick off from Ernest Hemingway. It says, Ernest Hemingway said, once you’ve hunted, man are men and liked it. You’ll never hunt anything, but our men again. So I wrote it once you’ve hunted whales and liked it.
You will never hunt anything about Wales. Again, I had it made into this nice piece of art. They get a book, they get a piece of art. Then they get an eight foot harpoon, a whale harpoon. And then the next mailing again is a two gallons of tartar sauce on the tartar sauce that has a sticker. And the sticker says I’ve redone the sticker over there.
Put their picture on the sticker. And then as this quote, optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and bring in the tartar sauce. Um, they don’t listen. What I’ve done is I made it, but there, see all my crap on my walls, their walls have my crap.
So when you’re a hoarder, you know, the psychology of hoarding at, so I just to be a dream 100 pounds. You must master the art of accumulation and terrorizing people with mail. My job, my job is to terrorize. I’ve had four male people that have quit because the amount of crap that they deliver and send out, they just say, I cannot work this route.
I must move on. I’ll just something easier. Like a sanitation worker. But I just, you know, what I get from you also is it’s not like, okay, I’m going to do a dream 100. So I’m going to put out a direct mail and I have to do this check and check these off the box. You just genuinely do what you enjoy and what you love and what just you think will be so freaking hilarious.
Right? That, that is something that I hope that every single person that watches this takes away from you is that it can be fun. How can you make it entertaining? How can you laugh at yourself? Because it’s so freaking funny. I just love that. You know, I heard somebody you’re right. I’ll tell you where it came from.
Um, two things as a child, my mom said you’re weird and wonderful, weird, and wonderful. And she encouraged our weird. Uh, as a 12 year old, I had a lot of options. I was weird. A lot of ways I played the accordion. Um, so, um, till sister Calavera died and then I got out of that soccer. Um, but, um, one thing I had 25,000 baseball cards as a kid.
And when I thought about it, somebody I read a book and it said, um, they know what made you weird when you were 12 and do that for a little bit. And I was a consultant, but I will tell you I was passionate shameless. I was not, I did not have my level of passion when I worked with your dad. It wasn’t your dad.
It was, I thought I was going to be a screenwriter. I had the same lament. And what attracted me to your father is as much as he was a great consultant, that’s not what he wanted to do. He wanted to make movies. He wanted to create art and he wrote a thousand songs and he pursued it and it just didn’t happen for him.
Um, despite his amazing talent. I was attracted to that because there was this part that said, if I wasn’t a chicken, I’d be in LA and I’d be making my ideas happen. Um, but I did not have this passion for baseball. So I said, I’m going to make my company major league sales. I’m going to buy baseball crap.
I’m going to sit with my arrows of my youth all day long. I’m going to make it so I can go to the world series every year, throw the first pitch at every game. I’m going to know every hall of Famer. I’m going to do it. You know why? Because I can. And then one day I went to the field of dreams and I remember coming out of the corner at the fields of dreams at a game where I came out, I paid a bunch of money to play.
And I was there with Reggie Jackson and Pete rose and all these great players from my childhood. And it was the greatest day ever. And I said to myself, why don’t I do this all the time? And the answer was because I didn’t have enough time and. And I decided I will do stuff that will create time and money.
So every day is a joy because not unlike your father, I had other friends that passed away. I said, you don’t know how long you have. So I’m going to go out squeal on the tires. Like every day I’m going to squeal tires and instead of endure, same old, same old hit my dream. 100 people that don’t give a rip.
And I don’t give a rip about, I am going to laugh on every call. I’m going to choose to laugh and I’m going to choose to create joy. I’m going to choose to create wealth and everywhere I go, I’m going to celebrate that. Whereas other people go to work, I go to play and all day, and part of this was, you know, I was a failed comic.
I also thought it was going to be a comic. I did stand up. They told me to sit down and that was my best joke. Um, Okay, thanks for the courtesy laugh. I appreciate that. Um, so it’s not getting any better. Um, but you know what I had, I found that I had a unique way of when I was calling, I could make people laugh.
Like when, when people would call, you know, they’d like baskets call and I’d be like, yes, tell him it’s one tough own break. They’d be like white, one tough own Bray. H O M B R E. And they said, are you serious? I’d be like, yes. And then they would giggle and they go, Hey, call for you. Who is it? One tough own Bray.
H O M. And then on the other side, there’d be some major executive gone. Okay. Tough on Bray. What the hell is this. And then I would say something and then they would laugh and they go, can you teach my people to do that? So I, and I made up new words, big swift kicker, troublemaker. I do anything that just supported my habit of like no attention span.
Like I needed to laugh all day. I’m very, not a mature person. Um, I am not, I’m a broken toy at a lot of levels. So somebody said, make your mess your message. Oh, wow. I’m a mess that you start like corporate America. They put me in the doghouse for that crap. Be a bad boy, kicked me in the nose. Right. I’d be like, I’m not in corporate dude.
I’m straight fighter. I will crush you corporation. So, you know what I found out, my dream 100 used to be. Go after corporate logos today, I go after David to crush corporate logos. I take the underdog who has it, who can, who has something of value and as a consciousness. And it’s not just their business it’s they want to do something else.
Um, my wife and I, we support building Wells in Africa. You know why when there’s no water in Africa, they don’t send boys to get the water. They send girls that girl doesn’t get to go to school. That girl gets raped and pillaged on the way to and from, and a child is lost. But when you have a well in your city, all the girls get to go to school.
Okay. They aren’t defiled. So, you know, I found out there are people that support those missions. They don’t care about their businesses, but when they make more money, they’re building Wells in Malawi, the poorest country in the world, um, when people die of kerosene burns, then, um, then, uh, um, aids like aids is the Africa is the aids continent, but Cara seen people get burnt.
There’s no lights. So they have care. Kerosene, a disproportion of their wealth goes to just so they can see at night. But the answer is solar light. A solar light means they don’t have to spend any money and they cost us nothing. Two weeks ago, a top producer in the world. Legend and Rick Scruggs in Virginia in the insurance business said, I’m going to tell you about Watts of light Watts of light.
It’s a mission. To bring solar power, light to the S the most impoverished countries in the world where they can see at night so they can study and they can have a life, uh, so that, um, they can protect themselves from, you know, bad people. And, uh, so they don’t have to spend money on kerosene. We decided we would start a foundation to drive.
It presents people, sounds, people like to have. So, you know, sometimes it’s, our people don’t really care what you sell. We care about who you are and what do you want to support? And if you want to support, um, indigenous peoples of other places that don’t have the opportunities, and you’re thankful that you were born on third base, you hit a triple in the United States.
Um, maybe there’s something more to than just having a bigger car or another house, maybe. So those are good. Now, how do we come up with your dream? 100. You got to start where you are. When I was 30, uh, I called on little people cause I was little. And then somebody said you have to call them decision maker.
So I said, I’m going to be a decision maker, meet with decision makers, for the purpose of making decisions. It was kind of a nice little pitch. I put decision-maker on my card and I, I give someone my card and they would laugh. You’re a decision maker and say, are you, and it’s kind of dorky, but you know, it got my beliefs to change.
And then one day I didn’t need that gimmick. But then I said, is that all there is, um, what if we were difference makers who called on difference makers for the purpose of making a difference? And so now my list a little evolved, you know, I’m now a little older than your dad was when he passed. Not a lot, but just like a year, but, um, you know, like.
If I’m blessed with 30 years, that’ll be great if I’m blessed with the day. But today my list is going to be people that are up to something and that’ll be my legacy. That’ll be my legacy. Um, so, um, that’s how you make your list can at work. You’ve got to find your list of people. Um, I was 22. I think the thing that I would like to drive home when it comes to dream, 100 is you can come up with your list of people you want, but that’s what you want.
The question is who will want you? My brother-in-law is a priest and he celebrated our wedding. He was the official, you know, he’s the pastor, the priest in the ceremony and the Catholic tradition. They give a homily a message in the middle of the ceremony. And he said there once was. Man looking for the perfect woman.
And when he found her, she unfortunately was looking for the perfect man. Um, sometimes we look for our perfect dream. 100, not understanding that the one that we think is perfect is looking for the perfect company and we all have our warts. The question is who’s perfect for you. Um, as I took my kids through the college X, you know, I have great kids and I love them and I wasn’t looking to get them in the best school.
I wanted them to be in the best school for them. I read a quote that said college is not a prize to be won. Colleges have fit to be made dream. 100 is not a prize to be. It’s a fit to be made to marriage, to being made. It’s not who do I want? It’s who can create, who can I create the most value who’s harmed the most because I’m not here.
And when I can get my list of who I can make the most difference for weirdly enough, they’ve been waiting for you to show up. And that tends to go exponentially now on that list of the hundred people that I can make the most difference. There are people that you can make more difference for. They gotta be on your first wave of 10 companies or so.
And like, why go after a hundred equally when there’s 10, that you can make more difference for? I’ll kind of bring this back as a summary. Now I’m 23 years old and selling life insurance. I’m broke. I’m living with three guys. We’ve used furniture from all of our parents. Our fridge has two beers, two pieces of molding pizza and a baking soda thing to make it.
And that stink. This is our place. They told us, go sell your friends and then your rubber debris be referred to their parents because doctors and captain of industry want to buy insurance from 23 year old drunk roommates of their children. Um, but I’m telling you it didn’t work. And I struggled. I must have the ugliest friends in the world because nobody got married till they were about 30.
And, um, but one friend did and, uh, they shortly later got, uh, they were very successful. Um, came from good stock, as they say, um, they quickly got pregnant with their first. And I got invited to a couple shower and then no one was, I called my sister, what is it? A couple of shower. They’re like, they’re going to have the baby.
And so they’re going to have a party for all their friends, bring a date, and then you got to bring them a gift for. So what do you get them to go, go to Dayton, Hudson, the department store in Minneapolis. Now target go to Dayton, Hudson. They have a computer it’s called the stork registry in it, all the list of all their crap.
That’s the best store in town. Dayton, Hudson. There they have money. There’ll be there. I go in, I put in, asked for my buddy’s last name, put in, see his name pops up. I print up the list. It has their name, their address, their phone number. People were stupid in 1986. Um, it had the day the baby would be born.
It had a list of everything they wanted. You know what occurred to me on duh? I don’t need to dream one. Huh? I need this box. I said, I went in and go, Hey, and I looked through and go, good Serber printed, good suburb. Printed, big, good, sir. Berg. I printed out all of the list cause you know what I found out, I didn’t know anybody that had a lot of money that was 25 or so that lived on the right side of town that was pregnant.
But that box had a mole. I printed out this pile. I looked till there was nobody and I ran for the door. Like I was the Heisman trophy. I’d call him up and I’d say, Hey, ring, ring, ring, ring her now I Amanda’s not in, Amanda’s not in issue. Oh yes. The sushi. Oh Amanda, uh, Tommy shop is my name for mayor. No. Um, can’t say that.
I know. Did we speak before? Uh, this’ll be a short call, a big picture. I’m an insurance guy. I’m not even really good at this. I can only help one kind of person. I typically help young families, right? Side of town, probably starting their careers, expecting a pretty good future and maybe contemplating, or just recently had kids.
If you’re not that you should hang up on me and you would say, oh, how funny you should say, I expecting I’m expecting a child. Yeah. Out of the town. What is that? And I’m like, you are not. And then you would talk and I’d say, well, listen, before I wasted a lot of your time. First of all, congratulations.
There’s two kinds of people, people that believe in churn, some people that don’t, which one are you? Hmm. I think insurance is even more important now that I’m having a family that’s too bad.
Well, then you’ve already taken care of this. No, I haven’t. Sorry. I haven’t. What do you mean? I thought you believed insurance. Yes. Now that you bring it up, I think that that would probably be pretty important. They didn’t usually give that easily. I usually have to go to this next one. Dumb question.
Something happens to your spouse today. You’re still having the kid, right? Cause you’re going to raise them without any coverage. And that’s when they would ask me in. And I did that three appointments a week. I got two of them and I made 9,000 a week in 1987. You know what? I got awards and I came on this stage and they go, okay.
So here’s what I do. I go to Dayton, Hudson. I print out these things, but I go, Hey, would you still have the baby? If your husband died, they’re like, no, no. And that’s why quit selling insurance. But here’s the point of the story. I didn’t know anything about selling. I found people that needed me worse than I needed them.
Find somebody that needs you. When you look at your dream, 100, think of the antecedent events that caused a need. Someone gets pregnant, they buy a different house. They buy a different car. We bought a van. My wife had a sports car. We bought furniture. We bought these things. We buy life insurance. There are antecedent events.
When somebody changes, when a president of a company changes, everything’s going to change. Don’t just look at raw numbers going. Here’s a hundred. That’s a list. If you’re going to do that call disease, no one ever gets to him. Okay. That was supposed to make you laugh. Okay. So start at the bottom. As everybody quits, they never get called, but what’s works better is to think.
I studied the Inuits and the Intuit, um, indigenous people of the north. They lived in sustained by whales. But if you wait to hunt whales and you wait to see one, there’s a whale, let’s go get mobi. It’s too late. By the time you navigate through chunks of, you know, thousand pound ice, like all over the place, the whale will be gone.
You have to know where the whale will be right there, 45 minutes before. But how do you now you don’t have GPS. You don’t have a satellite
They put their children to play on the coast, play by the beach. When birds gathered over the water, they knew there were krill in the water. The birds were over that spot because they were feeding behind a bunch of little fish or a bunch of big fish behind the big fish are seals and behind them are whales.
The answer is, look for the birds. You’ll get the whale in 45 minutes or some time when you’re looking at your dream. 100, the question you should ask is what are your birds? What’s the sign that somebody is going to buy? The thing that we sell, they just don’t know it yet. What’s the problem we solve. What happens before that, that creates that problem.
If I can get the list, if I can create analytics, if I can be alerted to people that are in transition that are in changes, everything will change. All of a sudden my head. I don’t have to chase them forever. My last message. And then probably, I don’t know anything else is, um, you get sent to who you sound like you could send to who you sound like.
If someone calls you out and speaks Chinese, you might know Chinese, but this buddy, I am going to be like, ah, I’ll be looking around somewhere. I’ll be like, I’ll call siblings gone. Do you know anybody at work just speaks Chinese because I don’t speak Chinese. I’ll be like, why is it from a to speak? You get sent to who you sound soundbite.
When you talk about your product or things related to your product, you get sent to people that buy your product and all they can do is buy it on price. They’re usually going to be commoditized. You’re not going to be the lowest price. You’ll get a chance to do a lot of work. And at the end of the day, they’ll even if you drop your price, they’ll just lower their existing vendors, price cause changes.
What I’ve learned about dream 100, does I needed to transform the language I needed to transform the language of what I talk about to the language they talked about. And I needed to move from the person that I used to call on to the person that doesn’t think they need to see me. I’ll give an example is I call on larger institutions as a guy who works on sales.
They want to send me to the sales leader who can’t buy pencils. They can’t do anything. They have to get permission for anything. I don’t want to call a sales VP, by the way, if you’re a sales VP, I don’t want you to call me never. Why you don’t have any money. Ideal was CEO’s. I don’t care what the size GM’s.
If you’re not the head, I’m not talking. I needed to rechange my message. It’s not what I have. It’s the problem you have. And the executive problems are risk mitigation, growth, sales, and profits, and specialization differentiation, blue ocean. So I’ll take a look and say, how does what we do mitigate their risks?
How does it give them growth? How does it give them difference that helps them acquire new customers? I can’t talk about what I have, or they’ll say, tell me about it. What makes you better different? What I want is to transfer the relationship to problems that this person went to a meeting today at. And then when I called they go, that’s funny.
I was just talking about that and now I get access. And when I get access, my last lesson in that in dream 100, if the deals are big and you know, I I’ve helped people close deals, uh, with frequency over a hundred million to a billion dollar. For some firms, there are a hundred million is three and 5 million for individuals.
Maybe it’s a $432,000 case like the kid yesterday, but he made $211,000. Um, these, these range individuals, the larger scale problems, salespeople do not win deals. They get access to decision-makers to disqualify the opportunity. Whenever there’s a lot of juice on the bone, whenever there’s meat on the bone, whenever there’s a lot of stuff, when there’s a lot of opportunity,
they’re not going to believe the salesperson. They kind of believe that you’re saying things because you’ll get a commission. A salesperson never makes claims. They say we solve these problems. Here’s what we can do. Here’s what we can’t do. Let’s see if, what, if you have a business case, I think we can help you, but you should never trust me.
I’m a sales person. Do you mind if we get your team of experts to meet with my team of experts and see if there’s a reason for us to play further, it takes a cast of characters. You were an artist, performing artists, singer beautiful. And by the way, great singer a guitar player, et cetera. But you would never, if you chose to go that way, you never made it on your own.
You need an agent and you need an accountant and you need production and you need backup musicians and other vocalists and sound mixers and a host. There’s a cast of thousands that it takes to make an artist. You need a costumer and an exercise person. Cause it’s your brand and all this stuff, right. We see the face in the voice.
But there’s a, like success has a thousand fathers. Um, that’s what it is. And sales of large deals for. So the companies here that are selling things that have zeros, the more zeros, the more people show up, the biggest mistake I’ve seen when people are hunting large deals in the dream, 100, our person comes, makes a list of a hundred calls them and it never occurs to them.
What are they going to do? If they get in front of them, what will they do if they hook their attention? When there’s one person that has the answers to everything, you look small and small as scary, big companies buy from small companies because they’re creative and they’re responsive. They don’t buy from them because they’re risky.
There isn’t redundancy. And if it doesn’t work, they’ll get blamed. When you’re hunting whales, you should in dream 100. And most people, they, when they say dream 100, they’re looking for bigger, not better. So if you’re looking for bigger, you ought to figure out who’s going to come with me. Um, another consultant that worked with your dad, good friend of mine was named gene McNaughton, Jean and I did a deal for a college football, uh, team member in Iowa.
They had a call center, they had 969 after your dad passed. We did some things together. Um, this company at 969 clients, I think was the number 13 of them did 91% of their business. They hadn’t won a deal of size in some year. I said, well, first of all, we’re not going to try to sell 9 69. I think you should get rid of 956 of your clients fall.
They are a mess. Yeah, that didn’t go well. Um, then I said, I said, I don’t think we should go after your top 13. And I don’t think we should go after anything new let’s figure out what we’re really good at and let’s sort it out and let’s go after four. Let’s just go after four of your 969 clients, we went after one and one created a hundred million dollar sale.
They were only as $67 million company. They had 969 clients that did 67. We went after one of their clients that we looked at, we thought through and figured out how we were going to win it. And it was a time and a third of their whole business they’d hire, I think 2000 employees, you put 2000 people to work.
Do you need a hundred? Maybe not. You need a hundred when you’re looking to get going and deduce something. When you have insight, maybe it’s less when you’re not desperate. Maybe it’s not who could pay me, but who will be a joy to work with who will bring joy relationship? Sometimes the answer isn’t to get everyone on your list, it’s to get someone who matters more on the.
Because once you have it, the bring you everyone else. So some Sue said, um, if there’s a thousand of them in 10 of you, you’re like, don’t fight them. Like, you know, against like, there’s the thousand of them. There’s 10 of you. But you’ve got to do is you’ve got to flank them. Number one. And then what you really do is you do guerrilla marketing.
You go after the leader and take up the leader. If you can take out the leader, the chickens will run when you cut them off from the head. Okay. And dream 100. Sometimes what you say is who’s the leader. Who’s the one that if we get them all the dominoes fall, rather than taking your acts and shopping at a hundred trees, chop, chop, chop, chop, chop hurting a hundred trees, maybe oughta trap shop at one tree a hundred times, but pick the right tree.
And when it falls, they all. These are my weird ideas that I’ve come up with since working with your dad, they are brilliant. I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. I don’t think I’ve had one interview where I’ve smiled as much as I have with this Puerto Rico that helps I’m only looking out at the ocean and not there yet.
No, I am so grateful that you were able to shed such wonderful light on the dream 100 with so many interesting stories and just mostly you just being you that’s, that’s the biggest takeaway for me and always been your guiding light for me to follow my own path. And it may be different from what’s been before, but it’s what brings us joy.
So thank you for not only showing us how to win a big deal, but also how to do it with joy. I think, you know, at the end of the day, The word sales. Person’s an interesting one. We often leave the person out of the sale. So I think at the, if we really look forward, the easy lock, the key to turn the lock is to put the person back into sales person, to not be anybody else to be you.
That’s what I say to you all the time. Don’t be your dad, the you, why? Because you’re never, you know, you went to USC, this is the best way to end. USC had a guy that taught there far before you enrolled. So name is Leo, but Scalia taught a course on love and Hannity. He would do this poem and I won’t have it exactly right, but it would be directional.
He said, I’m a plum. Not everybody loves plums. Some people like bananas. Sometimes I want to be a banana because everybody loves plums, but. Um, I think I said that wrong. Anyhow, everyone wants bananas. Everybody wants a banana, but I’m a plump, right? So you know what? I am a Bluhm. See when you’re a plum, not everyone gonna love you, but the ones that love plum will get you.
When you try to be a banana, you will always be a second rate banana. The problem with dream 100, you come up with a list and it never shows up that they are banana buyers. Find a list. People that are looking for you, that when you show up, you will be taller and smarter and wiser, and you will be all the more joyous.
Thank you, Tom chef. That was brilliant. Uh, and for people to find you, would it be major league sales.com? They can go that, but to be honest right now, uh, the best way is probably LinkedIn. So reach out on LinkedIn. Oh, perfect. You can see all the lies I told you about myself.
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