An experienced salesman provides advice on how to find clients, nurture long-term business relationships and always close the sale.
Milstein’s first job was cleaning toilets at a McDonald’s restaurant at the age of 16. It’s the type of job most teenagers do for spending money, but the author used his free time to read the words of company founder Ray Kroc and make plans to move into management. He soon discovered his love for sales and, after finding a job as a mortgage loan officer, made his first million by his mid-20s. Currently, Milstein devotes himself entirely to sales—100-hour work weeks are typical—and to always putting the interests of his customers first. While giving a speech before 300 loan officers, the author paused to respond to an e-mail he received from a customer on his BlackBerry, and when a few members of the audience commented on this display of rudeness, Milstein advised, “This is what it takes to be the best. You have to be ready to drop everything for your clients.” The author provides dozens of tips and techniques to find clients and close sales, counseling readers on skills such as their “elevator speeches.” Milstein sells home loans for a living, but insists that his techniques would work just as well for all manner of products and services, and offers advice to those who sell menswear, automobiles, seafood and hotdogs. The author devotes the last chapter to the subprime mortgage mess, and boasts that he actually prospered during the meltdown because he refused to sell risky loans to his customers. Milstein’s ideas are easy to grasp; in a chapter about 40 ways to botch a sale, he counsels salespeople to always remember the client’s name, never interrupt the client and always accept the client’s business no matter how small the profit. These appear to be simple rules, but they could easily be forgotten by many salespeople who may be wondering why business has fallen off. Milstein’s enthusiasm is infectious; throughout the book, he counsels readers to brave snowstorms, fix their clients’ flat tires and even paint their clients’ porches if that’s what it takes to make the sale—sound advice for any budding sales superstar. His message is clear: love the product, love the customer and do whatever it takes to close the sale.
An excellent, persuasive handbook for salespeople.