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Hey Contractors, Here" s A Trick For Getting People To Do What You Want Them To Do

A friend of mine, the operations and sales manager of an excavating contractor I worked for, was an absolute master at getting people to do what he wanted them to do.

His secret? We'll get to that in a moment but I'd like you to get to know a little bit about Jake first.

Jake ran both sales and operations for our company. He was and is a very unique individual and is doing quite well for himself now that he's off developing land. By the time Jake parachuted in to our company, he had already become something of a legend in our little part of the construction world.

Jake originally moved into my home town to open a branch office for his employer. He opened the office and proceeded to build sales to $20 million in just five years. And he virtually did it by himself.

He did the selling. He created the estimates. He organized the field crews. He ordered the materials.

The home office did run his accounting and he did have an ace superintendent to help him with the 10 pipe and dirt crews. But still, to do everything he did masterfully was almost inhuman.

Jake was and is incredibly efficient and incredibly smart. Jake had a handful of tricks he used and I would like to share one of the more unique tricks that he used to manage his clients and manage his cash flow.

Pay attention. Here comes the secret that I promised to tell you.

One time while we were sitting across his desk, taking a breather from the pressures of life, Jake mentioned that he doesn't sleep much. I went "what do you mean?"

"Well I only sleep about three hours a night."

I was like "How do you do that and more importantly, what do you do when you're not sleeping?"

He kind of chuckled and replied "It's not that I try to stay awake. I just start thinking about the conversations I'm going to have with my clients and crews."

He had my attention. "Tell me more, tell me more."

It turns out that he rehearsed conversations he was going to have with his client over and over in his head. He explored and practiced every angle a conversation might take.

He'd think about what the client might say in response to his attempts to get the client to do something.

"If the client responds this way, I'll say that. If I say this, the client might respond in one of three ways." Then he'd explore the appropriate answer for each of the client's three possible

He'd follow that chain of thought in his mind over and over through all the various possible twists and turns and multiple replies his client may have throughout the conversation.

Because he had run through each conversation multiple times, Jake was a master at controlling the real conversation, never being surprised by something someone said. Let me give you an example of how he put this to work.

Needless to say, Jake was brilliant at closing a sale. As he had thought through all the reactions the client might have to his statements, all the concerns the client might voice to his suggestions, and all the objections the client might raise, Jake could get them to sign on the dotted line with little to no

He was never caught off guard. He was cool as a cucumber when the client tried to throw him a haymaker. Jake just went with it and redirected the conversation back to where he wanted it to go.

He wasn't using sales tricks. He was genuine, but was always a step ahead.

He would do this to get his clients to hire him, to spend millions of dollars with him. He would do this when he was bringing them horrible news such as "We've hit rock. It's going to cost you another $500,000."

The guy might have budgeted $1 million to develop his residential property and now he's going to spend $1.5 million to get the job done. Jake made sure he knew exactly what to say to keep the guy from bailing on him.

Conversations were like chess games to him. Chess games he played over and over in his head prior to actually starting the game live and in person. And he virtually always won.

I've been working on it myself and have found it to be quite helpful. When I practice, I become much more disciplined and effective in my interaction with prospects and clients.

So, if you really want to make great gains with your existing clients, close more sales, and get your own guys to work harder and smarter, I encourage you to give Jake's trick a little try.
Practice critical conversations ahead of time.

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