Episode 17: How to Become a Growth Multiplier in Sales with WINS™


As a veteran top producer, coach, trainer, author and keynote speaker, I founded Floriss Group in 2006 to extend and scale my passion for helping sales and customer-facing teams compete and win as servant leaders. Eventually, our clients’ successes fostered the creation of the Growth Multiplier Movement™.

Over the years, I have founded or invested in more than a dozen closely held and venture backed companies, resulting in multiple IPOs and liquidity events. I have trained or coached more than 6,500 CEOs and sales leaders from startups, family businesses and global enterprises across more than 100 industries — including many INC 500, Deloitte Fast 50, Deloitte Fast 500, Business First Fast 50 and Innovation Award winning companies.

Today, I serve and lead clients and partners from our offices in Columbus, Ohio. My calendar is open to anyone who wants to #takethelead by taking control of growth. Connect with me here, or reach out to james@florissgroup.com.

Connect on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jamesrores/

Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JamesRores1

Visit the Floriss Group Website: https://florissgroup.com/


Dan Harris: [00:00:04] I'm your host, Dan Harris. And welcome back to another episode of Minds on B2B. Thank you so much, everyone, for clicking, subscribing, sharing, downloading. And of course, listening to our podcast, this is a weekly show dedicated to helping busy B2B executives, marketers and sales professionals. Stay informed. Learn something new and perhaps apply a lesson learned or run with an idea shared by our guests. As we say, minds [00:00:30] on all of our minds together are better than any one mind alone. Who knows? He just might like what you hear or connect a network with us. Well, I know you're going to learn something on this episode, and I'm confident you're going to run with an idea, maybe even two that were shared on this episode. Joining us once again is James Rores. He's the president of the Floriss Group. And we're so lucky to have him join us. So a little bit about the Floriss Group. So his team, what they do is they help [00:01:00] sales and customer facing teams eliminate barriers to the success they're having on the sales side, marketing side. And they cultivate habits that really produce larger pipelines. They deliver higher win rates and they've increased revenues for their clients.

Dan Harris: [00:01:16] In our last episode, James and I talked a lot about the concept of sales as a leadership competency. He taught us how to take a servant leadership approach and focus on communicating shared goals and working [00:01:30] with your customers to guide them to get the results that they want. And that's this idea of the growth multiplier. And that not only helps the company, but it helps the individual salesperson selling to that company and your company as well.

James Rores: [00:01:42] So welcome to the show, James. Pleasure to be here again, Dan. Yeah, I really appreciate you taking time out of your day. I know you're very busy and what you have to offer to the listeners is going to be incredibly beneficial.

James Rores: [00:01:54] Outstanding. Dan, last time we were together, we talked about the idea of sales [00:02:00] as a leadership competency. We talked about that last time, today wer're going to talk about how we how we enable that with our universal buying cycle. Okay. And you also talked in the last episode a little bit about the growth multiplier movement. So can we talk a little bit more about that as well as we as we get into this? Yeah, let's do that. Okay. So let's start off there. I mean, let's talk about the model first. Describe it for the audience and then how it aligns to this idea of the growth multiplier [00:02:30] movement. Sure.

James Rores: [00:02:31] So the growth while the player movement is based on the collecting WINS sales platform and the operative part of the word is WINS a lot of we like this model one because many folks that think of servant leadership think of a win win scenario. Unfortunately, many folks that don't understand servant leadership think that we're talking about when we talk a wiIN/win, they think we're talking about everyone gets a trophy. [00:03:00] That's not the case. We're talking about I want a trophy or we're talking about is is the end result of any negotiation where both parties feel like they come out winning. They come out with their goals achieved. So it's not about everybody gets a everybody gets a trophy implying that we don't earn it. We don't earn the trophy. This is about everyone in the in the deal coming out, feeling like their [00:03:30] goals are being addressed. The impacts that they want to achieve are being addressed. So COLLECTING WINS is about that. And we leverage the WINS to frame out the model. So I'd like you to just I'll explain the models because we are not using visuals here by leveraging it a story. Think about when you approach when a salesperson approaches a client for the first time. The most important quality you can display is curiosity. It's about [00:04:00] really starting with understanding of the buyer and the problem the buyer believes they have and is trying to solve. And you want to move from curiosity to clarity.

James Rores: [00:04:12] You want have clarity about the actual the actual we call it the real problem because not often. It's not often the buyer truly understands the problem they're facing. They need our expertise for that. And so we come to clarity around the definition of the real problem and [00:04:30] the solution that we can deliver that's going to give them the best outcomes. So to do that, we start. We leverage WINS. We start with wants. Well, what we want to start with what the client wants. And we discover this by answering a simple question, why change? So what is the what is the trigger? What is the priority that is driving this buyer to seek change? The wants buyer in any buying decision [00:05:00] is the decision maker. It's a decision maker inside an organization or a company or a group or a family if you're selling to consumers, it's the the decision maker is the person who asks the question, why change and answers? It answers it with here's what I want. Large goal. Large priority. Big, big objective. Then it's we go on to AI, which stands for impacts. So we understand once. Now we want to understand the impacts [00:05:30] of success, failure or doing nothing. The impact. The answer to that. I'm sorry. Impact is the answer to the question. Why now? It's nice to want something, but as sales people, we have to work with folks that want it now. So I really want to qualify. The impact of success, failure or doing nothing so I can qualify that that buyer and the opportunity as one that we should both be [00:06:00] spending time on too often, especially buyers in the B2B world look at sales people, not just as salespeople but as information sources. So they oftentimes use us for education without any intent to buy. It's our responsibility as leaders to make sure that we do not fall into that trap. So once it impacts together, determine value [00:06:30] for the client. We understand the big goals by understanding what they want. We understand the impact of success, failure, doing nothing. By understanding what the expectations they have for the business case. Those two things together create value. And when we start focusing here on when we are having conversations with the buyers, we we position ourselves as the emotional favorite. We are actually making the entire conversation about them. This approach works face to face. This approach works [00:07:00] in emails. It works with when you're cold calling. The biggest mistake you make with a with a cold e-mail or any email, even if it's with a someone you know very well, is to start by talking about yourself. The biggest mistake you make when you're cold calling is by starting to talk about yourself. You have to earn the right to do that by first talking about what you know about the priorities and the impacts of the client you're talking to, the buyer you're talking to wants to achieve.

James Rores: [00:07:29] Is that a good place to [00:07:30] start? That is an excellent place to start. So going back when you talked about curiosity and clarity. Does that play a part in every single one of those functions that you're operating on as a salesperson?

James Rores: [00:07:43] Yes, it's interesting. So we rail against the way solution selling is oftentimes implemented. Many solution sellers are experienced as we experience as buyers solution sellers who ask us questions just to [00:08:00] position their products, not to under truly understand what my goals and objectives are and the things that I care most about. But just just so that they can build a business case for their solution and it becomes very obvious they're doing that insincere. And as Paul mentioned last time, this is how buyers lose trust. So, yes, the curiosity is around achieving clarity. The clarity we're looking for is is what is that successful buying decision look like? How do we get to a successful buying decision that [00:08:30] gets both the buyer and me, the seller where we want to be?

Dan Harris: [00:08:34] Yeah. And I think the interesting thing, too, and I've had this happen in sales calls. You probably have to. I love it. This is my trophy. When I ask a question and two or three people around the table look at each other and say, that's a great question. We've we've never really thought about that. So that tells you you're digging deeper and you're going further than you should or need to. But it's also a value to them, too, because you're pulling something out of just the commentary [00:09:00] that's taken place. So, yeah, that's my trophy. Every time I hear that, I I get a chill run up my back. So. So that's that's a really great point.

James Rores: [00:09:08] So in last time you asked me how to peep out of sales will take that leadership position. Asking questions is the first and foremost way to do that. To give the listeners an idea of what I mean. Many of us are trained to simply ask discovery questions. Where are you now? Where do you want to be a [00:09:30] leader? A servant leader would also ask a provocative question challenging the ideas the buyer has right now about where they aren't, where they could be.

James Rores: [00:09:42] Have you thought about this? The other folks that we talked to, managed industry are experiencing this. Are you experiencing the same thing? Would you like to explore? So we're we're stretching it. We're stretching their ideas of what's possible. So discovery and provocative questions, the kind of question you talked about [00:10:00] where someone says, well, I never thought of that. That's a great question. We call those good questions. Okay. Tough questions. The kinds of questions that make our clients uncomfortable. Yes. The other thing you have to do if you're truly going to operate is a growth multiplier. A salesperson who competes in wins as a servant leader. You have to. To be able to walk into a an organization and sit down with a buyer and be willing to challenge [00:10:30] them and to make them uncomfortable in a respectful way. But this is another way that we move, then we provoke them out of their their position of complacency into a position position where they're actually going to do something.

James Rores: [00:10:44] Okay. Okay. So. So I just as I think about that in.

Dan Harris: [00:10:50] In talking with Paul two on the operational side, what does it look like to be able to get a team? To go through this process and [00:11:00] how long does it take and what can you expect in the short term, near term and long term? Sure. Well, the winds the winds.

James Rores: [00:11:07] Process is one that you can you can execute five minutes at a trade show. It's one that you can execute over five or 15 months of a sales cycle. It's really powerful. We talked about wants and impacts in terms of using that to create the emotion, to become the emotional favorite, as you also heard, no [00:11:30] doubt heard, it's a great, great place to qualify. So if you don't want something big enough or you don't want something that matches what I can deliver, then I want to qualify you out with my first question. So that works really well at a trade show. So instead of at a trade show handing gadgets and things out to people, the first thing we'll ask them about is what their objectives are. Yeah. And then we'll ask them we'll ask them what kind of impact they expect to achieve. The reason impact is a powerful second question. It's the answer to the why. Now question [00:12:00] is because it demonstrates that the client has thought about a business case.

James Rores: [00:12:07] What's your goal? What's it worth? What do you want? What's the impact? We have to have this. And if they haven't thought about it, we then have to walk them through it. Once I do that, now, I can step over to needs and solutions. Once I'm the emotional favorite, I can now move to. Okay, great. The answer to why buy is what do you need? My favorite question there is what's stopping you? [00:12:30] You've told me what you what your goals are, what the impact of success is. How come you're not there yet? Right. What's holding you back? Now we have a conversation, a real conversation around needs. And I can be provocative here by really testing my capabilities and whether or not those represent gaps for the client, the more of my capabilities they don't have today. Again, the better the better fit I have. But we're now talking about me and how I fit into their requirements. After I've talked about where they want to be. Yeah, it's [00:13:00] a different it's an entirely different paradigm.

James Rores: [00:13:01] Totally. Totally. So you can answer the question. Just repeat you. You can do it immediately. Like you said at a trade show. But when you have this team and you're up early operationalizing this, is it a two month, three month? Plan or is it dependent? Are there dependencies and what are some of those dependencies for anyone listening who might be interested? Sure.

James Rores: [00:13:23] We have a are our first and most popular training program is one where we simply we simply call it sales as a leadership [00:13:30] competency. It's one day. And after that day, if you apply what you learn that day over a three month period, you should be able to improve the production of your existing pipelines. So your existing pipelines should grow revenue by 21 to 43 percent just by applying what we teach you against your existing pipeline. So it's very simple. It's simple to learn. And once we walk you through a day of training, it's simple to apply. All that has to occur with the sales team [00:14:00] to make it work is they have to be willing to adjust their mindset. Right? Right. It's a what? What you have to have is the willingness to be wrong. And to recognize that if you're in a training class and you're it and the goal is to improve, then you must be willing to walk away from the things that aren't working for you. We give our clients access to our developmental tools. One of the tools we have is something [00:14:30] we call a kiss list. KISS stands for What will you keep? What will you improve? What will you stop? What will you start? So throughout the program, participants are writing down the things that that we're recommending that they're already doing.

James Rores: [00:14:46] That's the stuff we want to keep, the stuff that we recommend that they're already doing, but maybe not as well as they could. That's where they're going to focus on improvement. But we know you can't start something unless you stop something, typically because our brains are full [00:15:00] an hour and we don't have lots of time time available. So what will you stop? What are the things that you're doing? The habits, the practices, the thought processes, the tools you're using that aren't working? Well, you commit to stopping. And then what about what we taught you? Will you add? Well, you start doing so. That's one very simple way at once. When you walk through the kiss list in a day's session like that, you leave actually with a developmental plan that your manager now can work with you to help you make sure that you execute [00:15:30] over that three month period. And by the way, if if you if we if we agree to help you achieve any goal. And you don't achieve it, then you don't pay us. We we are. We have a very strict promise about the kind of impact we're gonna have for the organization that we work with.

Dan Harris: [00:15:47] That's incredible. You don't hear that that often. So because you're changing, you're evolving a group. Do you occasionally have people who just don't get on board? I know a lot of salespeople met the past. [00:16:00] It's like, no, my way works. I'm going to continue to do it my way. And then because this is a class and then some follow up. I mean, how does that sales leader inside the business? Are they equipped with things to help that person eventually change and work through the course?

James Rores: [00:16:15] That's a great, great question. So. So we do have a managers only program. We walk folks. We walk sales managers and leaders through that help them after they've gone through all these all the training programs that we have [00:16:30] helps them bring everything together and help to help them activate help to improve how they activate that change within their organizations. With regard to this first one day, we have we have a we have a very strict rule and a part of.

James Rores: [00:16:47] Pardon me if I offend any ears, but we have a no bullshit rule in our class. So every time every trainee, every participant is authorized and encouraged by me or by Paul to [00:17:00] raise their hand, if they if they sense anything that we're saying is wrong, we call it the no bullshit rule. And if we cannot create clarity for you in that moment, you're free to you're free to a full refund. And you actually you're you're free to fire us for it working within your organization. Because, again, if we can't if we can't impact you, we don't want to be there and we don't want to force anything. That's one thing. The other thing is that we [00:17:30] also recognize that our way is not the only way. So we will never ask a client to change a practice that works as a as a salesperson. I've been through lots and lots of training myself throughout my career, and I was always highly discouraged by trainers who got up in front of the audience and who were obviously professors, not practitioners. And. And they were really they were [00:18:00] telling me there was only one way, which is their way. And that immediately turned me off and immediately prevented me from learning anything, because I was I just had this this barrier that prevented me from really welcoming anything the person to say.

James Rores: [00:18:13] So we do all we can to make sure it doesn't. We don't do the same thing for our clients. And we believe that there are lots of ways to be successful. Our goal is to, one, provide you with tools that will help you personally or overcome any barriers you may have. And then the [00:18:30] other big benefit of this is most sales organizations are looking for a process and methodology that they can be used to unite everyone and create a culture, a sales culture that can drive growth. But all of also that allows them to integrate well with the rest. The organization. Correct. Last time we spoke about how funny it is when you walk into a plant and you see words like integrity on the wall, but the sales team are encouraged [00:19:00] to go do it sell anyway, they can't. We want sales to be aligned with the rescue organization and the core values that built that company and that that continues to build that company on top of loyal customers and profitable business relationships.

Dan Harris: [00:19:15] Yeah, well, I mean, in the world that I live in to every person is a representative of the brand. Right. And to have that disconnect between the plant and the sales people is really a disservice to the company in the brand. I've fully, [00:19:30] fully buy into this idea and I'm sure our listeners will have questions as well. So as we wrap up.

Dan Harris: [00:19:37] Can you tell people how they get a hold of you, learn more about your programs or just contact you to have a conversation? [00:19:45] Sure. You can reach me directly at James at Floriss Group Dot com. I'm happy to spend 30 minutes with everybody who has a question about how [00:20:00] we can improve. We also have a ton of public training programs with webinars, videos and other resource. The folks and you can visit the site enjoying the boat just by subscribing to our monthly newsletter.

Dan Harris: [00:20:17] Thank you, James. It's been a pleasure having you on the podcast today. So listeners visit the florist group dot com to learn more about empowering and transforming your sales team to become a modern customer centric sales organization.

John Sheeran: [00:20:31] Thanks [00:20:30] for listening to today's minds on B2B podcast. If you'd like what you heard today. Please subscribe. Also, feel free to share this episode with your peers and colleagues so we can keep bringing you quality content from the best minds in B2B. Until next time from all of us it minds on. Have a great week.


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