“What is the one thing I can do to be successful?” Jesse asked. “Is there a secret to success?” My mind raced fervently. He wanted to know the key to success and the reality was, I didn’t have a good answer for him. Not because I had never been asked that question before. In fact I had been asked it many times, by many different people. In the past I had always blown that question off by saying, “There isn’t any ‘One Thing’ in this business. There is no magic bullet that will propel you to success.” I knew that their question was really from the wrong motivation so I hadn’t taken them seriously. They had wanted the shortcut to success. I couldn’t blame them…to a point. I mean who wouldn’t want a shortcut? The problem was there are no shortcuts to success in this business.
The difference with Jesse’s question was that he was asking from a pure heart. He wasn’t looking for a shortcut. He was looking for wisdom. I didn’t give Jesse my stock answer that afternoon. His earnestness made me dig deeper. As I looked at his question through the lens of my own experience, it dawned on me that I actually did possess a magic bullet. I realized that the secret of my success wasn’t a trick or technique that could be learned. It certainly wasn’t a shortcut. In fact it took a lot of hard work. But it was magical.
I was so excited that I knew the answer that I blurted out, “Two a day!” Jesse’s quizzical look made me continue, “Set two Decision Maker appointments per day, every day without fail. No excuses, no exceptions, come Hell or high water just set two appointments with decision makers every day. If you do that, I guarantee you can’t fail in this business.”
The Back Story
When I first meet Jesse he was the ticket writer at the local car wash. He convinced me to get my car detailed. I must have told him no at least a dozen times, but Jesse asked thirteen.
I convinced him to come in for an interview. I’m confident that there isn’t a personality/skills test that would have predicted Jesse’s success. In fact I’m also confident that most sales managers wouldn’t have given him an interview. But at the carwash I saw a glimpse into Jesse’s determination. That determination made him a six-figure earner in this industry.
Most new agents would have nodded politely, promised they would “try to set two decision maker appointments per day” and continued on their path to failure. Not Jesse. Jesse took it to heart. He became a man possessed. When we had full-day training classes, Jesse would bring his lead list with him and call them on breaks. When he had enrollments going on, Jesse would call prospects between employees.
One night I came back to the office from a Chamber of Commerce networking event around 7:00 p.m. and Jesse’s car was in front. This wasn’t unusual as Jesse had a key to the office. Jesse was so broke when he started in this business he asked me if he could clean the office at night for a little extra money. Instead of finding Jesse cleaning, I found him pounding the phone. I asked him why he was still dialing at 7:00 at night and his answer was, “I only have one appointment scheduled so far today.” When I asked him who he was calling on at that time of night he simply said, “Retail stores are still open. Not all of them are owned by big companies. I’m not leaving until they all close or I get my second appointment.”
I learned four things about Jesse that night.
Do You Possess Jesse’s Four Things?
- I had to be careful what I told Jesse to do. He took me at my word and would follow through regardless of the cost.
- Jesse’s word was his bond. If he said he was going to do something, he was going to do it.
- Jesse was a warrior. He would not be denied and he put his heart into everything he did.
- Jesse’s enthusiasm was contagious.
I was so impressed that he was still working that I offered to help. I asked him if he would give me part of his call list. Jesse refused to give me his list as he felt he needed to set the second appointment himself. There was no way I was leaving until Jesse had his second appointment. I went into my office and started calling on resumes. Jesse had fired me up so much that I knew I couldn’t leave until I had set two recruiting appointments. Jesse and I both set our second appointment about 20 minutes later.