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Kelley Robertson, president of the Robertson Training Group, has been helping people improve their skills for almost two decades. He began by training employees, managers, and owner/operators in the hospitality industry, then became manager of retail training for Sony Canada. Since 1995 he has conducted hundreds of sales training workshops and helped thousands of professionals improve their sales results.
His client list includes Canadian Carpet Centre, Crabtree & Evelyn, Heffner Lexus Toyota, Hillebrand Estates Wine, Home Hardware, J. Michaels, Nutrition House, Part Source, Peller Estates Winery, Rogers Video, Sangster’s Health Centres, Sony Canada, Staples/Business Depot, Creative Outdoor Advertising, Daryl King Real Estate Group, Delta Resorts, Epic Plant Company, Larter Advertising, National Network of Embroidery Professionals, Nord Gear Canada, Preferred Nutrition, and Personal Service Coffee.
Kelley Robertson’s articles are published in a variety of online and print magazines and newsletters such as Auto Trim & Restyling News, BedTimes, Boating Industry Canada, Canadian Business Franchise, Canadian Natural Health Retailer, Canadian Women’s Business, Canadian Vending, Dartnell’s Selling, Graphic Arts, Home Business Magazine, Luggage, Leather & Accessories, National Tanning Training Institute, Professional Door Dealer, Professional Jewelers, Sales & Marketing (New Zealand), Sales Promotion, Selling Radio, Sleep Saavy, Sleep Products, Small Office Home Office, Smart Tan, SOHO Small Business, Staff Digest, and Tire News.
Kelley Robertson can be reached at: kelley@robertsontraininggroup.com.

Go to my website for more ideas, tips, articles, and resources that will help you increase your sales and make more money.
Here is an idea of what you will find.
Free! “59 Second Sales Tip” Newsletter
This newsletter offers one piece of practical sales and motivation advice delivered via e-mail directly to your in-box. Sign up for your free subscription and receive a special report, “100 Ways to Increase Your Sales” absolutely free.
Stop, Ask & Listen—Proven Sales Techniques to Turn Browsers into Buyers Originally written for retailers, this book has helped thousands of sales professionals in a variety of industries improve their sales results. It details key selling techniques that can be used by virtually anyone who sells a product or service. The concepts are easy to use and Kelley gives you his unique Blueprint for Success. This step-by-step process clearly outlines how to incorporate the ideas and principles contained in this book into your daily and weekly routine.
Secrets to Overcoming Objections
If you hear objections like, “I’ll think about it,” “I can get this cheaper at your competitor,” and “I need to check with…” then you need this program. Kelley shares nine key principles that will not only help you overcome objections; they will teach you how to prevent many objections from actually occurring. Available as an e-book (downloadable file) or as an audio CD.
72 Ways to Negotiate More Effectively
Are you constantly faced with buyers asking for outrageous discounts, concessions, and demands? Learn how to improve your negotiating skills by using a variety of tactics and strategies. This program will help you increase your sales and drive more money to your bottom line. Available as an e-book or audio CD.
Negotiate Like a Pro
A comprehensive audio program that gives you virtually all of the information you need to negotiate more effectively. Learn what techniques and strategies professional sales people use to negotiate better deals for themselves. This package includes 5 audio CDs and 1 CD-ROM that contains complete transcripts, action plans, negotiating templates, and self-critiques.
Sales is NOT a Four-Letter Word!
This CD contains a live version of Kelley’s signature keynote presentation and offers insights that make the sale process easier to manage and more comfortable. Listen to this energetic, lively, and engaging presentation on your way to sales calls and appointments and boost your skills and motivation.
Setting Powerful Goals
This recorded tele-seminar will explain how you can easily increase your revenues by setting goals and developing action plans. This powerful and insightful session will show you exactly how to create, execute, and achieve goals that will keep you motivated, excited, and help you become more successful. Available as an audio CD.
Special pricing is available for bulk purchases.
Please contact us at 905-633-7750.

The Secrets of Power Selling packs highly practical advice into a succinct and very readable format. Read it and reap Kelley Robertson’s considerable experience and wisdom.”
Jim Clemmer, President, The Clemmer Group
“I have had the pleasure of reading every article that you have published as well as frequenting your web site for interesting business tips. After working with you directly and witnessing the success that you were able to evoke from our retail franchisee chain, it was with excitement and pleasure that I read through The Secrets of Power Selling. The format of this book made every chapter exciting and easy to use. As you move through the various Power Selling Tips you can feel yourself growing in strength and confidence. The chapters are also set up in a manner that will enable the reader to use them as a training tool. I look forward to incorporating them into our company’s training guidelines.”
Catherine Deslippe, Vice President Operations, Nutrition House
“Having a small business, I have to be everything, including the salesperson. Unfortunately, I don’t have the time to go to a seminar on every area in which I need to become proficient. Having spent my career as a technical person who had avoided being involved in the sales process, I am a beginner with regard to doing sales, so this is an especially weak area of mine. This is why I found Kelley Robertson’s book The Secrets of Power Selling to be a perfect fit for my purposes. Each topic is short so that I never have an excuse that I can’t make time to read one. They’re organized in a way that I can jump to those I think I particularly need help with or return to one, again. In addition, Kelley’s examples are practical and lead me through the actions I need to take. Through The Secrets of Power Selling Kelley is opening up an understanding of the world of sales—a world I previously thought to be mysterious.”
Gloria Metrick, GeoMetrick Enterprises
The Secrets of Power Selling has practical day-to-day applications for anyone who deals with customers and sales. The layout makes it easy to reference and a valuable resource that all sales professionals will benefit from. A must read.”
Tyler Bradford, President, Advanced Expeditions
“As a seasoned sales professional, I really enjoyed The Secrets of Power Selling. I found more than a few strategies and tips that can immediately create more return on investment for my sales efforts. The chapters are clear, concise and perfectly self-contained so you can reference and read at will without worrying about missing important information. Each chapter is a topic unto itself and includes many practical suggestions and tips that are ‘ready to use’ and applicable to most sales positions and organizations. I would recommend The Secrets of Power Selling as a must-read for any sales professional truly serious about maximizing their potential.”
Bill Nutter, Managing Partner, The Delta Synergy Group
“I’ve been in sales for over 22 years and have read many books on sales. The Secrets of Power Selling captures the essence of sales and all its key factors in an easy-to-read, straightforward style. This book is an excellent resource for anyone in sales. It’s a great refresher for those experienced in the sales profession and reinforces the important aspects of the sales process that sometimes get overlooked. It is the perfect resource for any small to medium size business as not only the true salesperson can benefit from Kelley’s wonderful insight, but also all the non-traditional sales-related personnel who may have contact with any customers.”
Steve Whigham, Co-CEO, Promotional Elements Inc.
“I recommend this book to any sales professional who wants to reach a higher level of success. Every chapter offers practical, common-sense ways to hone your skills and achieve improved results immediately. When preparing for important sales meetings, I use this book as a refresher to make sure I’m ready to handle any direction the conversation might take. It has dramatically increased my confidence and my sales success! You owe it to yourself to read this book now. It is packed full of ideas to improve your results, regardless of your sales experience.”
Patricia Hobbs, President, Direct Path Inc.
“Kelley has been there and done it and that’s why this book is a must read. As a master facilitator and trainer, Kelley gets right down to the nitty gritty of creating customer comfort and prospecting not only with your brain, but also with your heart. Learn to apply what Kelley tells you in The Secrets of Power Selling and you’ll find your roadmap to selling success.”
Brian Larter, President, Larter Advertising


The majority of sales books on the market focus on a specific topic or aspect of selling. Others provide a complete overview of the sales process. You can read books on prospecting, cold calling, generating referrals, selling to executives, and closing techniques, as well as dozens—if not hundreds—of different ways to sell.
This book is a bit different.
If you are like most sales professionals, you are very busy. You probably do not have time to read an entire book in one sitting. That’s why I have deliberately kept the chapters in this book brief and focused. Each chapter concentrates on providing information on a specific aspect and single topic of achieving sales success. From asking questions, to planning, to establishing trust, each of the chapters offers practical advice that can be used to improve your sales.
This format allows you to read the chapters that most appeal to you and that will have the best impact on your results.

“The ability to connect with people is a key sales trait.”
Kelley Robertson
Every person you interact with is different. That means you need to adapt your approach if you want to maximize your results. You cannot deal with a multitude of people, using the same style all the time, and hope to achieve the best results. Adapting your approach means you need to be aware of different personality styles.
In 1928, Dr. William Moulton Marston created the foundation for what is now known as the DiSC profile, one of the best known and most widely used behavioral styles assessment tools. The DiSC profile represents four distinct styles—dominant (driver), influencer (expressive), steadiness (amiable), and compliant (analytical). Here is a summary of each style, how to recognize each, and the most effective way to approach each style.
The Dominant or Driver: A problem- and goal-oriented person who is focused on achieving results. These individuals tend to be forceful, bottom-line people who hate to waste time. They want straight talk and direct answers. You can recognize Drivers by their directness and sometimes bluntness, their tendency to use “I” in their conversation, and their body language. Drivers will often sit forward, point with their forefinger as they speak to take control or emphasize. They will interrupt the conversation while maintaining very direct eye contact. They will have a strong handshake, and their workspace will likely be disorganized. Their voice-mail message will be curt and brief: “This is Joanne. Leave a message and I’ll call you back.”
Focus on showing them how they will get results and achieve their goals. Use the word “you” several times in your conversation. Allow them to dominate the sales discussion, ask for their opinion, and let them express their ideas and thoughts. This will help you gain their buy-in. Limit the amount of small talk during your meeting because these individuals want to get down to business quickly. Maintain a high level of confidence and do not be intimidated by their directness.
The Influencer or Expressive: A people-focused, fast-paced person with lots of energy. Their key strength is to promote ideas and persuade others to agree with them. They have a tendency to “tell” people versus “asking.” Expressive individuals are very concerned with rejection. Their workspace will often be covered with pictures, awards, or letters. They usually demonstrate a friendly but firm handshake. These individuals are the easiest to spot because they are optimistic and friendly. Their voice-mail message will likely be long and friendly: “This is Robert. I’m out meeting clients right now so I can’t take your call. Please leave me a message and I’ll call you back. Thanks for calling and have a great day!”
Image is very important to Expressives so praise them and show how your product will make them look good in front of their peers, co-workers, business partners, and customers. Use third-party testimonials and endorsements and tell stories during your sales presentation.
The Steadiness or Amiable: An Amiable is most concerned about helping other people and works at a steady pace. They will be much more quiet and reserved than a Driver or an Expressive, which makes them more difficult to read. They may not say anything if they disagree with you so as not to create conflict. They are excellent listeners and prefer discussions with one or two people versus group conversations. Their workspace is typically well-organized and clean. They are also hesitant to make changes because they enjoy consistency and routine. Their voice-mail message will be soft and possibly apologetic: “Hi, this is Cheryl. I’m very sorry I missed your call. Please leave me a message and I will make sure I call you back.”
Demonstrate how easy the change will be to incorporate into their work environment and how it will help the other people on the team. Use the word “team” in your presentation. Soften your tone of voice and slow down your rate of speech.
The Compliant or Analytical: These people are critical thinkers and draw conclusions based on facts, figures, accuracy, and the rules. They focus on procedures. Perfection is very important to them. They are not necessarily shy but they can be difficult to read because they do not show their feelings. Their workspace will be very precise and neat; in some cases, everything will be organized alphabetically and labeled. Analytical individuals prefer information in writing, so send them an agenda prior to a meeting. Use bullet points in your correspondence, and make sure your spelling and punctuation are 100 percent accurate. Their voice-mail message will ask you to leave a detailed message: “This is Geoff. Please leave your name, phone number, time of your call, the reason for your call, and the best time to contact you.”
Give this person time to make a decision and back up your information with lots of facts, figures, and statistics. Be precise and avoid using generalities or discussing feelings. Above all, avoid trying to push this person into making a quick decision. Highlight referrals and satisfied customers to help reduce the risk factor.
When you adapt your natural style to more closely match the style of your customer you will gain rapport more quickly. This means you will experience less resistance and you will increase the likelihood of moving the sales process forward, providing of course, that your product or service is of value to your customer’s company or organization.

“It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.”
Claude M. Bristol, The Magic of Believing
Being confident is key to success in sales, but it’s not always easy to feel this way. Developing the skill of using positive self-talk or affirmations can boost not only your self-image, but also your success in your job. An affirmation is a powerful tool that will help you develop personal self-confidence, reprogram your thinking, and achieve better results. Simply put, affirmations are positive statements that we repeat to ourselves frequently.
Although many people are familiar with this concept, few actually use it on a regular basis. You may remember the Saturday Night Live skit that satirized affirmations. The character would look at himself in a mirror while stating a variety of affirmations, concluding with, “Gosh darn, I like myself.” The truth is that affirmations really do work. They are designed to replace feelings of inferiority, doubt, and the lack of self-worth. The way they work is simple; there are only three rules that you need to remember.
1. Affirmations must be personal. When you develop an affirmation begin with “I.” For example, “I am a successful salesperson.”
2. State affirmations in the present tense. Avoid saying, “I want to quit smoking.” This states your desire, not your intended result. Instead, state, “I enjoy the lifestyle of a non-smoker.”
3. Affirmations must be positive. Avoid using negative words. For instance, “I don’t want to gain more weight” should be phrased as, “I look great in my new suit.”
The next important point of affirmations is that you must repeat them aloud several times a day. You must drive this message deep into your subconscious and replace the other thoughts that occupy your brain with it. The most effective way to do this is through repetition. The more often you repeat an affirmation the more your subconscious goes to work to produce it and make it become a reality.
Here is an example. When I was in my thirties, I decided to quit smoking. I created several affirmations that reflected the outcome I imagined. “I am a nonsmoker.” “I enjoy a smoke-free life.” “I live the lifestyle of a nonsmoker.” “I enjoy living as a nonsmoker.” I repeated these affirmations several times a day, long before the deadline I had set. A few months later I did quit, almost five months sooner than I had originally intended. I also continued to repeat these affirmations for the first month or two afterward to help me get through the withdrawal period. Affirmations helped me picture myself as a nonsmoker. They helped my subconscious mind make it a reality. For someone who smoked for more than twenty years, this was a challenging picture to create.
You can use affirmations to develop self-confidence in selling. Create a variety of affirmations such as
• “I am a successful salesperson”
• “I am confident and comfortable on sales calls”
• “I enjoy selling”
• “I like helping people make buying decisions”
• “Selling is a rewarding career”
• “Selling is an honorable profession.”
Repeat these statements aloud to yourself several times a day and you will soon notice a change in your behavior.
If you are currently earning $25,000 a year and your goal is to earn $100,000, you must break this goal into digestible, bite-size chunks first. Don’t make that $75,000 leap in one affirmation; your conscious mind will not accept it as being possible. Instead, create several affirmations. Start with the goal of increasing your income to $35,000. Once you achieve this, create a new affirmation with your income at $50,000, and then $75,000. Then make the jump to the final figure. You’ll find taking the smaller steps much more effective than trying to make a huge jump all at once. However, once you begin to build momentum, you can take larger steps to achieve your goal. Be patient. Before long, you will notice the change gradually beginning to happen.

“An apology is the superglue of life. It can repair just about anything.”
Lynn Johnston
We all make mistakes. As simple as this seems, most people do not admit to the mistakes they make. Instead, they try to cover them up or redirect the blame. However, the best salespeople admit their mistakes.
An interesting phenomenon has occurred in the business world in the last few years. More corporate executives fail to admit fault even when they and/or their company have clearly been in the wrong. Yet, people will accept mistakes providing they feel that the people who have committed the wrongdoing are sorry for their actions. A classic example of this is Bill Clinton’s affair with intern Monica Lewinsky. The general public accepted that even the President of the United States was susceptible to making a mistake, providing he confessed to it.
Issuing an apology is a challenging process for most people. Many sales professionals feel that they will lose client confidence if they admit to making a mistake. Yet these same individuals will impress the importance of telling the truth on their children.
As a business owner, I have had to apologize to customers from time to time (no, my business does not run flawlessly!) and I have no hesitation in doing so. I have yet to have people tell me they will no longer do business with me because I have admitted to making a mistake. However, I can think of several companies I will not give my business to because they failed to apologize for a mistake they made.
An extremely powerful approach is to apologize before your customer knows something is wrong. Let’s say, for example, you promised delivery of a product to a customer by a specific date. You later learn that the shipping of the item has been delayed. Instead of waiting for your customer to contact you after the original delivery date has passed, take a proactive approach and call your customer to advise her of the change. Although you did not cause the problem, you should accept responsibility for it—after all, you are the company, in your customer’s eyes. Many salespeople are concerned about this strategy because they fear losing the sale. While this will happen from time to time, in most cases your customers will appreciate your proactive approach. Plus, they will respect the fact that you accepted responsibility for the situation.
Keep your apology brief. Tell your customer that you are sorry for the mistake, and state what corrective action you plan to take. Then follow through and make sure you do what you say you will. A common mistake many people make is to apologize too much. This means explaining exactly what went wrong, what caused the problem, or why the situation happened. People don’t really care about this—all they want is a solution. Here is an example:
“Mrs. Smith, I’m very sorry for the delay in getting back to you and resolving your service issue. I have made arrangements for a service person to contact you today to arrange a suitable time to visit your site and correct the problem. He should be contacting you within the hour. If, for whatever reason he doesn’t call you, please call me immediately. My direct line is…”
The next time something happens by mistake with one of your clients, take the time to apologize, solve the problem, and follow up to make sure it was resolved properly.

“We tend to evaluate others on the basis of physical, outward appearance.”
Marvin J. Ashton
Whether we like it or not, our appearance will affect our sales results. That does not mean you have to dress in a two-thousand-dollar suit, but it is critical that you look professional regardless of what you sell. My personal belief is that you should dress one step higher than your client. It is easier to tone down your appearance during a meeting by removing your jacket or tie than it is to step it up.
I once attended a conference for networking purposes—many decision-makers for my target market were in attendance. The stated dress code was business casual but I decided I would wear a shirt and tie. Imagine my surprise when I arrived and noticed that most of the attendees were attired in suits. Even though I was overdressed according to the stated dress code, I actually ended up being underdressed!
Here are a few guidelines to bear in mind with respect to your appearance.
• Avoid garish jewelry unless that is the kind of business you are in.
• Limit your use of colognes and fragrances. Many people are easily offended by perfumes and some are even allergic to them. If you do wear a fragrance, keep it light; don’t overdo it.
• Keep your nails and hair neatly trimmed and clean.
• Never chew gum!
• If you smoke, wash your face and hands immediately after you have a cigarette. The smoke lingers on clothing and skin, and many people find it offensive. Never smoke immediately before a sales call with a new client or prospect.
• Brush your teeth throughout the day. This will help keep your breath fresh, especially if you drink coffee or smoke.
• Dry-clean your shirts or blouses rather than machine-wash them. They will look brighter, fresher, and crisper. Even the hottest iron can’t compete with pressure steam. Have your suits and ties dry-cleaned regularly too. Suits should only be dry-cleaned three to four times a year, so hang them outside for a few hours each month to keep them fresh.
• Make sure that your clothing fits you well. Properly hemmed pants or skirts, jackets with the correct sleeve length, and shirts with the right collar size, or blouses that fit properly all contribute to your professional appearance.
• Invest in good shoes and keep them polished. Many people gauge a salesperson by the quality of his or her shoes. Buff them daily to maintain a lasting shine and replace shoes that are worn out or severely scuffed.
• Avoid clothing that is worn out. We all have a favorite shirt, sweater, dress, or jacket. Nevertheless, there comes a point at which even our favorite article of clothing becomes too worn or outdated for business use. Recognize when your clothing needs to be replaced and do it.
Although these may seem like commonsense suggestions, many salespeople often neglect or overlook them. A general rule of thumb to follow: the more expensive the products you sell, the more professional your appearance should be.
Post the tips listed on these two pages and review them as you prepare for your next sales call.

“My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way.”
Ernest Hemingway
Writing articles is one of the most effective ways to establish yourself as an expert. Articles give you great exposure both in print and online, and writing an article is easier than you think.
Most trade publications are hungry for content. When my first book was released, I was contacted by a trade magazine to write a regular column for them. Since then, I have expanded my writing and now submit articles to several hundred publications—paper and web-based. I have booked many workshops and speaking engagements as a direct result of someone reading one of these articles.
You may feel that this strategy does not apply to your industry. I know many people who write, including real estate agents, people who sell vending services, financial planners, marketing experts, professional speakers, virtual assistants, publicists, retailers, health-supplement manufacturers, just to name a few. Regardless of what you sell and to whom, articles can help get you noticed by prospective customers. Writing articles can help you establish yourself as an expert. However, any article you write must address the concerns of your target market. This means that you need to consider what problems your target audience faces and write an article that offers suggestions to deal with these issues. You may also feel that you can’t write a lengthy article that people will read. Here are some tips that will help you get started:
• Start with a main point or topic. Let’s say you sell industrial farm equipment. You could easily write articles about proper maintenance of the equipment, as well as some tips and techniques to maximize the use and life span of specific products. Your article could be, Eight Ways to Extend the Life of Your Tractor.
• Think of six or eight key points that are relevant to your topic. The average article in a trade magazine is six hundred to one thousand words, so write a hundred words (about two paragraphs) for each key point. Using the tractor example, you would elaborate on each of the eight ways to extend the life of a tractor. In some cases, you will find that you can write an entire article about one single point.
• Create an opening or introduction, and close with a call to action. Write in a conversational tone rather than a formal one. It can help if you picture the typical person who will be reading the article and imagine that you are writing to that person.
• Write a byline or author bio that states who you are, what you do and for whom, and how to contact you—telephone and e-mail. To drive more traffic to your web site I also recommend that you offer something to the reader. For example, my byline states that people can receive a free copy of 100 Ways to Increase Your Sales by subscribing to my newsletter, available at my web-site.
You’re done! You will find that it is easier to write at certain times than others. Sometimes I have written an entire article in less than thirty minutes while in other situations it has taken me the better part of a day to get the words on paper. Regardless, this is still a very powerful way to market and promote yourself and your business.
One final word: make sure that the articles you write offer something of value to the reader. They should not be a blatant advertisement for you and your company.