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How to get a good sales mentor

Hello to all,

I've recently started a game development outsourcing company with myself and a partner. As CEO and frontman, I am also by default the Chief Sales Officer and lead salesman.

I'm now starting on my first few sales, and loving the process thmbp2;, but I've really not had too much sales experience in the past and know that there's much room for improvement.

As part of this, I've bought Jeff Gitomer's sales bible and taken great sales advice from that.. but I need more training, and mentors are a great way to do this.

I need a sales mentor to help give me good sales heuristics
and coach me on my sales correspondances and overall sales processes.... but I'm very much at a loss to where to find one, especially since I'm on a limited budget.

Does anyone have any advice on where I could find a mentor, perhaps via networking organizations or online? Any insight from the voices of experience on this forum would be much appreciated.

Thanks - Mike. - by Gamer Mike
Also, by the way, I saw another thread here from someone asking about sales coaches - and many of the replies gave advice on what to look for in a mentor but not too much about specific suggestions on WHERE to look.

If people could provide suggestions that are more focused on specific places to look or strategies to take on finding a mentor, I'd appreciate that.

For reference, here is what I'm looking for: I'm looking for individual consultation on how to make a sale throughout the entire process. I'd like to know the best practices for how to introduce myself, how to followup with good questions & value statements, and how to close. Personally I feel the best mentoring is given through practice, so I'd like to use the mentor to provide me advice on individual sales correspondances and learn that way (by doing.)

Any advice from local gurus is appreciated! - by Gamer Mike
Hello to all,

I've recently started a game development outsourcing company with myself and a partner. As CEO and frontman, I am also by default the Chief Sales Officer and lead salesman.

I'm now starting on my first few sales, and loving the process thmbp2;, but I've really not had too much sales experience in the past and know that there's much room for improvement.

As part of this, I've bought Jeff Gitomer's sales bible and taken great sales advice from that.. but I need more training, and mentors are a great way to do this.

I need a sales mentor to help give me good sales heuristics
and coach me on my sales correspondances and overall sales processes.... but I'm very much at a loss to where to find one, especially since I'm on a limited budget.

Does anyone have any advice on where I could find a mentor, perhaps via networking organizations or online? Any insight from the voices of experience on this forum would be much appreciated.

Thanks - Mike.
Hi Mike, and congratulations on your start-up.

If you're looking for someone to coach you for a fee, you would be looking for a "sales coach." There are a number of us sales trainers that participate at SalesPractice that do sales coaching, or you can do a Google search for "sales coach."

If you're looking for a mentor to guide you at no charge, I'm not sure where you would find something like that. There's certainly a ton of expertise in the participants here at SalesPractice...that wouldn't really be "mentoring," but at least it's a resource you could use.

Good luck finding what you need, Mike.

Skip - by Skip Anderson
Mike, you might want to share with the forum where you're located. Otherwise, there will be logistical issues in some of the prospective mentors.

I've been pinged twice in SP to provide a mentor role and I've expressed interest both times. Unfortunately, there has been no follow-up on the other end. The point being, you need to ask yourself "how serious are you?".

By considering what sort of sales training works well in your industry, you'll be able to qualify the mentor's "fit". For example, I'm a B2B guy with Xerox-type credentials which makes me great for the mentor role in B2B (especially complex sales, long cycle). Narrow the list ...

Good luck & Good selling,
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
First Mike, anything by Gitomer will be great. Good choice.

Next, mentor versus coach.

Mentors are usually people in a similar profession with experience to back them up. Usually they are within an organization and the human resource department matches people up. Being that you are in startup, check with the local office of your Small Business Administration who may be participating in the SBA Mentor program. Also, almost every local Chamber of Commerce has SCORE - a retired executive network who also provide mentors for free.

Coaches, as both Skip and Drew have said, are usually for a fee. You will find many of us here on this forum. My specialty is sales acceleration in particular for introverts, shy and reluctant. If that even sounds like you, please visit my blog (in my signature) or my website at http://prostrategies.com and contact me to tell me more about your new business.

Consider interviewing 2 or 3 of either mentors or coaches. Ask about their background, their coaching experience, their fees, etc so you know you have selected the best one for YOU. - by patweber
The Gitomer site seems to have myriad modules but, personally, I found the offering a little "rough" around the edges.

In fairness, at the time, I was seeking something for use by my client as a training offering which could be "cookie-cuttered" for use everytime a new office was opened (their premise was buying existing companies and re-directing the individual locations into the broadband market with a "replicatable overlay").

By the way, I did not find anything which worked.

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
The Gitomer site seems to have myriad modules but, personally, I found the offering a little "rough" around the edges.

In fairness, at the time, I was seeking something for use by my client as a training offering which could be "cookie-cuttered" for use everytime a new office was opened (their premise was buying existing companies and re-directing the individual locations into the broadband market with a "replicatable overlay").

By the way, I did not find anything which worked.

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat
I haven't visited Jeff's website for a number of years and am sorry it wasn't what you wanted.

Can you clarify your statement, "I did not find anything which worked." What exactly didn't work - links? resources?

Regards,

Patricia Weber - by patweber
My comment about not finding "anything that worked" implied that the Gitomer offering did not fit. The links at TrainOne were fine. The training seemed to be a take-off on PSS but without the polish. I went through a number of the modules and it simply didn't cut it.

I was seeking a training offering which could be slightly tailored to fit the client's needs. It was envisioned that as a new location was contemplated, they'd be provided everything to get off the ground quickly:
1. profile of SR to hire;
2. insight into territory assignments;
3. sales training hopefully CD or web-based;
4. sales compensation;

All of this, kicked-off at boot camp.

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
Hello to all,

I've recently started a game development outsourcing company with myself and a partner. As CEO and frontman, I am also by default the Chief Sales Officer and lead salesman.

I'm now starting on my first few sales, and loving the process thmbp2;, but I've really not had too much sales experience in the past and know that there's much room for improvement.

As part of this, I've bought Jeff Gitomer's sales bible and taken great sales advice from that.. but I need more training, and mentors are a great way to do this.

I need a sales mentor to help give me good sales heuristics
and coach me on my sales correspondances and overall sales processes.... but I'm very much at a loss to where to find one, especially since I'm on a limited budget.

Does anyone have any advice on where I could find a mentor, perhaps via networking organizations or online? Any insight from the voices of experience on this forum would be much appreciated.

Thanks - Mike.
Congratulations on starting your own business. You realize what you need, and started out by reading books. Reading books are good, but they don't give you the 'one on one coaching it takes to implement what you need to do'. As you yourself say, you need someone to "to help give me good sales heuristics
and coach me on my sales correspondances and overall sales processes.... but I'm very much at a loss to where to find one, especially since I'm on a limited budget."

As a business owner, you would hire an attorney or accountant for their professional expertise and that is what you will need to do in this case. Many of us on this site do coaching and training for clients on a fee basis.

I personally train sales people in a wide variety of industries in all the skills they need to improve from prospecting to closing. You bring up yourself your limited budget, however, ask yourself this...."Would I pay for the knowledge and skill development to learn effective techniques and behaviors to improve my ability to grow my company and be more successful?"

Let me share with you a story: A prospective client said to me within the last few days, 'Failure of their new business was just not an option'; to which I replied, "Of course, failure is an option, especially if you do nothing to overcome the problems you have growing your business and developing new accounts. If you don't learn techniques to overcome the challenges, the problems will continue and you will fail".

I work with clients to fit sales training into their budget all the time; as long as it is important to THEM to do, and succeed more. - by Paulette Halpern
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