THE THOUGHTFUL ENTREPRENEUR PODCAST
In this episode of the Thoughtful Entrepreneur, your host Josh Elledge speaks to the Executive Coach & Speaker, Dan Gordon.
A fascinating concept that Coach Dan introduced was the idea of a “qualified no.” This is when a prospect declines your offer with a valid reason that keeps the door open for future engagement. It's not the end of the conversation; it's an invitation to stay connected and revisit the opportunity when the time is right.
The importance of maintaining a connection with prospects, even after a “no,” cannot be overstated. Coach Dan advised that we should always leave the lines of communication open. This means following up, providing additional value, and showing that you're still interested in their success, regardless of whether they've made a purchase.
One of the critical takeaways Coach Dan shared is the importance of empathy in sales. He stressed that to connect with our prospects truly, we must first understand their fears and hesitations. It's not just about pushing a product or service; it's about listening to their concerns and addressing them head-on.
Coach Dan also highlighted the significance of relentless service. In a world where everyone is selling something, the differentiator is often how much you're willing to go above and beyond for your clients. This means not only meeting their expectations but exceeding them whenever possible.
Key Points from the Episode:
- Authentic selling and building connections with potential clients
- Understanding and addressing the fears and hesitations of prospects
- The value of relentless service and asking
- The concept of a “qualified no”
- The importance of staying connected with prospects
About Dan Gordon:
Dan Gordon, an executive coach and speaker, has carved a niche in empowering entrepreneurs to harness their inherent ‘superpowers.' He believes everyone has unique abilities, often unrecognized, that can drive remarkable success.
His approach revolves around the concept that entrepreneurs naturally confront challenges and fears others shy away from, demonstrating a rare courage and resilience.
Gordon has dedicated himself to guiding thousands of entrepreneurs for over twenty years. His coaching focuses on amplifying these inherent strengths, enabling individuals to realize and utilize their full potential. His methods are tailored to help entrepreneurs achieve success more rapidly and effectively than they might.
Gordon's philosophy centers on the idea that entrepreneurial courage and the willingness to face potential failure are skills and unique qualities that set individuals apart.
By fostering these traits, he aids his clients in recognizing their unique abilities and leveraging them for more significant personal and professional achievements.
04:20 – “Nobody wants to buy a fire extinguisher when everything's fine. You always want the thing when you need it the least.”
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Josh (00:00:04) - Hey there, thoughtful listener. Would you like consistent and predictable sales activity with no spam and no ads? I'll teach you step by step how to do this, particularly if you're an agency owner, consultant, coach, or B2B service provider. What I teach has worked for me for more than 15 years and has helped me create more than $10 million in revenue. Just head to up my influence.com and watch my free class on how to create endless high ticket sales appointments. You can even chat with me live and I'll see and reply to your messages. Also, don't forget the thoughtful entrepreneur is always looking for guests. Go to up my influence. Com and click on podcast. We'd love to have you. With us. Right now it's coach Dan Gordon. Coach Dan, you are the in executive business coach. You're a speaker and you are found on the web at Dan Gordon Enterprise. Com Dan, thank you so much for joining us.
Dan (00:01:12) - Thank you. Josh it is really a pleasure to be here. And before we start promoting me don't go to my website yet.
Dan (00:01:19) - Let me establish a little bit of credibility. All right I want to give your audience some help. Would that be okay?
Josh (00:01:25) - That's why we're here.
Dan (00:01:26) - Excellent. Because the thing I love talking about is selling. And the thing that I love is authentic selling, which I also call no douchebag selling. Right? As a professional salesperson and coach, I hate most professional salespeople and coaches because they exist in this scarcity mentality. Right? I'm sure you I'm sure you've had the experience, Josh, most people have. So I love talking about sales from a perspective of making connections, of deepening relationships, of getting to know somebody else's heart. And it's such an easy pivot from the BZ douchebag way of selling. And so can I throw down some little value bombs here? Would that be okay, or do you want to get into another conversation?
Josh (00:02:12) - Commence.
Dan (00:02:13) - Thank you.
Josh (00:02:13) - Commence the bombing, coach Dan.
Dan (00:02:15) - So this is.
Josh (00:02:18) - On us right now. This this is the thing.
Dan (00:02:22) - Very few people are going to know that that reference.
Dan (00:02:25) - Josh, um, this is the thing I love when I talk about sales. Right. And it is knowing what the know is. You have to know the no right, no point to your head, no shake your your head. Most people, most people early in sales are not very good at sales. Think that when someone says, I'm going to think about it, that's a no. When they say, well, I'm going to get back to you, they think that's a no. It is not. What it is is an expression of fear. Whenever you're asking someone to make a purchase, you're actually asking them to step into the unknown. And human beings hate the unknown. We are designed by our creator to resist anything that isn't familiar, right? It is written into our base code is how we have survived all these millions of years. So please understand that when you're talking to someone about making a decision, you're dealing with an emotional quadrant that they are not even aware of. So they're going to say things like, well, let me think about it or let me go to your website.
Dan (00:03:32) - These are all hesitation mechanisms designed to keep them away from making the decision that could what right. They don't want to.
Josh (00:03:39) - Make a mistake.
Dan (00:03:40) - Right. And why don't people want to make a mistake? Josh, what do you think?
Josh (00:03:44) - That pain. That's all that's painful. And you know, they have a fiduciary responsibility to advocate for their business, for their people, for their customers. I mean, there's a lot of responsibility. And if they're currently right, if they're not in immense pain right now, then it's almost like the default is safety, because at least I know what's going on there. This might be really good, but it also could be, you know, it's just an element of risk.
Dan (00:04:11) - I love the way that you say that, because most people will only think about buying a life preserver when.
Josh (00:04:19) - Yeah, when they're drowning.
Dan (00:04:20) - When they're drowning. Right. Like nobody thinks about that, right? Nobody wants to buy, um, a fire extinguisher when everything's fine. Right? You always want the thing when you need it the least.
Dan (00:04:32) - And it also least available. So how do we do that? How do we move people past their fears? Well, the first thing that you have to do is normalize it. Right. Here's the mistake that most people make, right? I might say to you, Josh, hey, let's talk about you coaching with me, which I'm not saying, but if I was now you're going to have a resistance. You're going to ask me things like, well, how much is it? Right. And all of those questions are designed to get you out of making a choice. So if I start throwing at you product benefits and features and all this technical garbage, it's not going to affect your emotion. No, it's actually going to make you more scared, right? Yes. So the first thing I have to do is normalize your reaction. Right. So you say to me something like, well, how much is it? And I tell you like, uh, $67,000 and you go, oh, that's way too expensive.
Dan (00:05:23) - I can't afford that. Right? Right. Now, if I start in with trying to explain the cost, I'm going to lose you. Yes, but if I say Josh, that makes perfect sense. I understand that, and you're right. I am really expensive. And, man, I know what it feels like to want to buy something. And. And when I can afford, like, it feels terrible, right? I don't like that feeling of not being able to afford something. But would it be okay if we talked a little bit about how this could work? And it's fine if it doesn't, but could we just kind of continue down that road? Would that be okay?
Josh (00:05:56) - Yeah, I feel safe with. When you extend that invitation, as opposed to let me handle your objections in a Tompkins fashion, are are all the reasons for doing something and not doing something. You know, old Ben Franklin. Franklin put a.
Dan (00:06:14) - Stake in my heart. Josh. Yeah, I hate it's so inauthentic.
Dan (00:06:18) - Right?
Josh (00:06:19) - Right, right.
Dan (00:06:20) - Imagine sitting down with someone that you love and ask him to marry you and saying, hey, let's list out all the benefits of marrying me. That person should run screaming, right? This is not how human beings engage in relationships. Yes, sales relationship is is such a deep relationship. I'm asking for your trust. So when I approach you in first say it makes sense. I know I am really expensive. I hate the feeling of not being able to afford things. Instead of being on the opposite side of the table of the negotiation table, I've come around to to your side. I have, in effect, put my arm around you and said, buddy, I get it. You know, I've been there. Let's talk about this. And I've also made it very clear that I'm not going to make you a client right now. Right. It's not going to happen right now. We're going to just have a conversation. My sales cycle can be up to six months, right.
Dan (00:07:16) - Because what I do is I keep the conversation going. Yeah.
Josh (00:07:22) - Uh, Coach Dan, I love that. I would imagine I wonder if you get some pushback from some sales leader that goes, you know, that spits out their coffee, goes six months. Are you crazy? I can't have my guys with six month sales cycles.
Dan (00:07:38) - Well, you can if you have enough people in your pipeline. Right. So I have a whole lot automated system, right? Every morning I wake up, I look at my calendar and I say, what's going on? Oh, I have this great interview with Josh. Oh, I have a coaching call with with ex. Right. Uh, Steve has booked a no-cost consultation. So I have all of these systems that are keeping me or keeping my pipeline full. And I'm going to I'm going to share one right now. Okay. So I have a book that's called Jumping the Gap. Kill your Story and Take Action. And your story, my stories. We all have stories about why we can't do something.
Dan (00:08:15) - And so this is a really easy read. It's a small book. It's really fun. It's about the stories that we tell ourselves, like, I can't afford it. It's not the right time. I'm not ready. All these things. So to get my book, it's really simple. Just text the word gap. Gap to this. Number (213) 409-8366 text gap gap to 21340983662134098366 and text the word gap. Now when you download this book, I'm going to show you how to keep your pipeline full. You download this book when you go to to that, it's going to take you to a form to just pop in your your name and contact information, and then you download it when you get the ebook, when you get the PDF at the beginning of every chapter, the beginning and end of every chapter, there is a link to book a call with me. Now this is what I call boomerang. Everything that you put out must have a link to connect with you. Put out ebooks, put out videos, put out all these things, but they all must have links to make a connection with you to schedule a call.
Dan (00:09:20) - So you're going to take a look at this book. You're going to love it. It's full of helpful information. It's going to help you close more deals, but you're also going to see how I use Boomerang to provide value to people and let them to connect with me. It's a really important part of keeping your pipeline full.
Josh (00:09:37) - Yeah. And I mean, it's very I mean, what you're talking about, you know, just kind of break this down, right, is you're giving value and you're making sure that it's always, you know, put the thing on the buffet and allow people to grab that thing from the buffet when they're ready for that. Until then, the default is keep delivering and providing value. Keep serving, keeps showing up as a as, you know, a consultant that's kind of de facto kind of already working as if, you know, again, there's going to be a limit to what you can do, but just keep that reminder there. Like, listen, when you're ready for our next conversation, you know, here it is and I'm going to be here for you.
Josh (00:10:16) - I like that energy a lot more than someone calling it. Hey, just touching base on you. You're ready to get going. You know, we got it. We got a 10% off sale this one this month. And so that's I think we all know that game and it feels very them centric as opposed to me centric as if I'm the buyer.
Dan (00:10:41) - Yeah. And it really does take a lot of faith in oneself. Yeah. To fully believe that your product or service is so incredibly valuable that the person that you're speaking to is so much better off with engaging with you, because it is your job to move them through their fears to the other side of their fears, where their life is better because they have bought your product, they're using your service. They're engaged with you in a way that enhances them. And you got to be relentless. You do. It's not about being pushy. No, but it's about being relentless.
Josh (00:11:18) - Yeah, you shared something earlier and you're talking about where, you know, being willing to say, oh, I don't know if ultimately you and I are going to work together.
Josh (00:11:28) - I mean, we can certainly explore that. And by the way, I am completely okay with whatever the outcome is. I'm just here to serve. I don't know if all of that is your language. Maybe some of that's an amalgam of language as well. Um, but can you talk about, like what I just illustrated there? Some salespeople may be very apprehensive to use that sort of vocabulary, um, help them understand why it's in their best interest to have more of it, more of that kind of an energy. I'm not saying I did a textbook. I'm just kind of that's how I say it. But I can tell you, can I? Before I let you answer, please, please. Yeah, I can just tell you, like our conversion rate is brilliant and when it doesn't convert, I am totally on board with it, not converting like I am, it seemed. It seems like there's very, not very often like when people decide to do business with us. Like I almost agree with them nearly 100% of the time when they choose not to move forward.
Josh (00:12:24) - Only rarely do I say, man, that's disappointing because, you know, it's like I see it for them and they don't see it for themselves or whatever most of the time. Like if it's a circumstantial reason for not moving forward, I'm completely empathic and I'm like, no, I agree, I. Don't think you should. No, I agree with you. You just said you don't think you should move. I agree, I don't think you should move forward either. I think you need to take care of that one thing first. Right? Let's circle back up. In a few months, I'm going to be around.
Dan (00:12:49) - We'll see that. That's the thing. Josh, it's clear to me that you believe in your business. You believe in your process, and you believe in your ability to help people, right like that. If they engage with you, they're going to be better off, right? So what you take people to, I'd love it. You took someone or you take people to a qualified no.
Dan (00:13:09) - And that's what I was talking about earlier. I'll think about it is not a qualified. No. Let me get back to you. Is not a qualified no. Exactly. A qualified no is no. I've you know, I've looked this over. Here's what I'm doing instead. Just like you said, I got to take care of this thing first. Well, of course you do. That's a no. Until somebody says no, they are still a prospect. And if you just allow someone to ghost away without completing getting to a no or yes, then you have failed them and failed yourself. And what that means is you don't believe in your product or service. So here's what you do when someone says, I got to think about it, you say, of course I don't do anything without thinking about it. You should think about it. Yeah, but before you jump, I'm just kind of curious. What are you thinking about? Right. So what I'm doing, I'm looping them back in.
Dan (00:14:02) - Right? Yeah. I got to think about it. Great. Let's talk about what you're thinking about. And. And if they say, well, I don't know, I have to think about it. I say, well, know what most people think about the money. Are you thinking about the money? And they go, oh yeah. Right. Boom. They are loop back in. Okay. So I'm going to keep working with that person until I get them to a yes or no or a next interaction. Now those are the three key things. And the next interaction is not give me a call when you're ready and next interaction is okay. How about next Thursday at 4:00. Yeah. And the thing that I do I use Calendly. You know, you need a online calendar schedule. Once I have that first call with someone, then I set up the next interaction. And this is what I say. I say, hey, yeah, let's talk about this in a week. I'm going to go ahead and book a call for you on my calendly if it's not a good time, just click the reschedule link.
Dan (00:14:55) - And they always say, okay, do not wait for someone else to book the call. Book it yourself.
Josh (00:14:59) - No no no no no no no no no. That's your that is that is your job as the growth sales director growth person like that. So that's the one area of the dance that we are always going to lead in for sure. Like I know that because by default booking another call with you is outside of their comfort zone generally. Right. Because they've not done that before. They've never had that. So we need to lead this. Okay. I book follow calls all the time and we're not going to say all these words. But that's what we want to apply. Right. That it's okay. You know, let me at least help you come to a good conclusion or, you know, what I'll do is I'll even soften it by saying, you know, listen, you know, I have a few more ideas with you. We don't have time to get into that right now.
Josh (00:15:44) - But I don't want to forget to to share some things I'm thinking about, or maybe some introductions I might be able to have. Let's keep this conversation going next week and explore. And by the way, totally happy. You know, if not, and separately, I would have said all I do is share, you know, with some great ideas you can implement in your company. I'm thrilled. I'm honored. And I feel like letting them know that it just boy, it makes everything a lot easier for me, really. I don't feel like I have to do this tug of war with anybody.
Dan (00:16:15) - Yeah, it's.
Josh (00:16:16) - Because you're what you're describing. You're getting on there. I'm sorry. You're the guest. No, no bloviating here. No no.
Dan (00:16:21) - No. Go go go I love it I.
Josh (00:16:23) - I love the energy that you're you. You like me like you have this advocate personality. I want to advocate for their best possible outcome, however that looks.
Dan (00:16:33) - Yeah. And when you first of all love everything that you're saying, I think that we were born under the same business sign here, uh, which is relentless.
Dan (00:16:43) - And you had asked earlier about this philosophy of just serving. And I know when a lot of people hear is, oh, my God, people are just going to take from me like, I'm just going to serve. I'm going to give them this. I'm going to give them that. That's not exactly it. Yes, you can become a doormat like like that. But what happens is if you're serving and not asking, then you're a doormat. You have to be relentless in your service and relentless in the ask. And it's not a quid pro quo thing. It's not I did this for you, so you do this for me. No, it is staying connected, right? And understanding they're afraid, right? Their biological system, their ego system is telling them not to do anything new. And that system is keeping them from taking action in a way that's going to help them. You energetically put your arm around them and you say, man, I am on your side, right? I want to help you.
Dan (00:17:43) - I'm giving you this help so you can do better things in your life. I had a client a while ago. She got on the call with me to tell me that she was not going to be a client, right. And by the end of the call, she was a client. Now, the reason that that happened is I gave her a tremendous amount of value. And I also will not by the end of the call, but about a month later, because I said, here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to give you some sales technology. I'm going to help you increase your sales. So the sale that you're working on, because she was working on a deal, if you close this deal, you will have enough money to hire me. So I'm going to help you close that deal. Now, once you close that deal, you have a choice. You can either take that money and run, which is fine, or you can take that money and use it to hire me because I said I'm asking you to trust me.
Dan (00:18:35) - I'm going to trust you first. And that's what you must do. You must show your prospects that you have faith in them, that you care about them, that you're willing to go out on the limb for them, not the other way around. You have to go to the skinny limb first.
Josh (00:18:53) - Mhm.
Dan (00:18:54) - Yeah.
Josh (00:18:55) - Why make all your clients absorb all the risk. That's not fair right. It's not Coach Dan I boy we're running short on time. Yeah I would I wish this conversation were three times as long. And I think you and I are going to collaborate on some other things moving forward. I think there's a oh hell yeah. So, um, Coach Dan, again, you shared a couple of resources. Let's make sure that folks have that. By the way, you've got a lot of free ebooks on your website. And you mentioned one earlier called Jumping the Gap. Your website is Dan Gordon and enterprise.com. But I think you also shared a phone number that someone could text and get the free download link.
Dan (00:19:30) - Yeah, yeah, yeah. Let me just shoot that again. Uh, the book is called Jumping the Gap. Kill your story and take action. And to get that book, just text the word gap. Gap to 21340983662134098366. And text the word gap gap and you'll get it. And you'll also see my my process of the boomerang.
Josh (00:19:56) - I love it. Coach Dan Gordon again, you are an executive business coach, your speaker and again your website Dan Gordon enterprise.com coach Dan, thank you so much for joining us.
Dan (00:20:07) - Thank you Josh be well my friend.
Josh (00:20:14) - Thanks for listening to the Thoughtful Entrepreneur show. If you are a thoughtful business owner or professional who would like to be on this daily program, please visit up my influence. Common. Guest. If you're a listener, I'd love to shout out your business to our whole audience for free. You can do that by leaving a review on Apple Podcasts or join our Listener Facebook group. Just search for the Thoughtful Entrepreneur and Facebook. I'd love, even if you just stopped by to say hi.
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