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Elite Sales Gurus


Discover techniques and skills that are applicable in ANY sales career!

If you could change your future in only a short four months, would you take the challenge? Thanks to the summer sales industry, thousands of young men and women have done just that--changed their lives. This industry gives individuals the opportunity to financially support themselves through school and land successful careers. Even with scholarships, the average student pursuing graduate level education ...

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Discover techniques and skills that are applicable in ANY sales career!

If you could change your future in only a short four months, would you take the challenge? Thanks to the summer sales industry, thousands of young men and women have done just that--changed their lives. This industry gives individuals the opportunity to financially support themselves through school and land successful careers. Even with scholarships, the average student pursuing graduate level education exits school with $30,000 in debt. However, the swiftly growing summer sales industry offers students two bullets for their holster: the opportunity to graduate debt free, as well as develop skill-sets and experience that profitable companies look for in the hiring process. In this book, fifteen of America's youngest and brightest summer sales gurus unfold their experiences with sales. This industry changed their lives . . . will it change yours?

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781456740610
  • Publisher: AuthorHouse
  • Publication date: 3/18/2011
  • Pages: 276
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Introduction: Success and You....................1
Chapter 2: What is the Summer Sales Industry?....................5
Chapter 3: Avoiding the Rat Race....................9
Chapter 4: Out of the Cream....................13
Chapter 5: Recruiting....................21
Chapter 6: Steve Adams, David Royce, Joe Gatto, Karl Durst....................27
Chapter 7: One-on-one with Matt Williams....................35
Chapter 8: Goal Setting....................41
Chapter 9: Presentation and Body Language....................51
Chapter 10: Motivation....................59
Chapter 11: Results....................67
Chapter 12: Desire to be the Best....................71
Chapter 13: Honesty and Integrity....................77
Chapter 14: Handling Rejection....................85
Chapter 15: Work Ethic....................101
Chapter 16: Coaching for Success....................111
Chapter 17: Self-Confidence....................115
Chapter 18: Health and Well-Being....................125
Chapter 19: Imperatives of Leadership....................131
Chapter 20: Staying Positive in a Recession....................139
Chapter 21: Being Personable....................149
Chapter 22: The Consumer....................157
Chapter 23: Master Techniques....................163
Chapter 24: Continual Learning....................173
Chapter 25: Distraction....................183
Chapter 26: Finding Balance....................193
Chapter 27: Rookies: What Not To Do....................203
Chapter 28: Role Models....................207
Chapter 29: Conclusion....................213
Chapter 30: Commonalities in Growing Up....................217
Chapter 31: Brad Parker....................221
Chapter 32: Brad Stokes....................223
Chapter 33: Butch Gagnon....................225
Chapter 34: Casey Creech....................229
Chapter 35: Chris Pugmire....................231
Chapter 36: Chris Williams....................235
Chapter 37: Dan Bigelow....................237
Chapter 38: Jared Bitton....................241
Chapter 39: Jeff Hagberg....................245
Chapter 40: John Dickinson....................247
Chapter 41: Luke Alm....................249
Chapter 42: Melissa Hafen....................253
Chapter 43: Seth Devey....................257
Chapter 44: Shawn Woods....................259
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First Chapter

Elite Sales Gurus

Unlocking the Minds of America's Youngest and Brightest Summer Sales People
By Shawn Thompson Kristy Hunt


Copyright © 2011 Shawn Thompson with Kristy Hunt
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4567-4061-0

Chapter One

Introduction: Success and You

Sales is an honorable profession. Without it, the economy completely stops, making sales the most important part of our nation's economy. If products are never purchased, the links that keep the economy flowing are cut down. Look at any company—when their stock price goes up, it's because of sales. —Casey Creech

Nothing is more exhilarating than the industry of sales: nothing is more devastating than seemingly endless rejection, or more euphoric than wrapping up a substantial sale.

You might be an entrepreneur. You may work at a home furniture store, cosmetic counter, pet store, or auto parts shop. You might have a loved one in the sales industry. This could be your first (or tenth!) summer doing door-to-door sales, or you are thinking that perhaps you would like to begin. On the offhand chance, you may even be someone who bristles when the word 'sales' is mentioned, due to the memory of a bad experience.

Regardless of your current involvement in the sales industry, this book—compiled through interviews of sales gurus involved with the summer sales industry—will open your mind to possibilities of improved sales performance, potential involvement in the industry for your own springboard into life, and even deepen your understanding of self-belief.

What makes an extraordinary salesperson differ from an ordinary salesperson? Just as we can see that the difference between these two words is the pre-fix 'extra,' the little 'extra' that a salesperson does will make him or her an extraordinary salesperson. It is the 'extra' that propels a salesperson's career to a level that, yesterday, may have seemed impossible to reach.

The keys to success are lying before you, begging to be picked up. Those who have seen, retrieved, and implemented these keys are those who have seen great gains in their lives. Now, it's your turn.

Your journey to success in sales is exactly that—a journey, not a destination. Success is the product of your knowledge and effort while consistency is the glue that holds it all together. Consistent success is attained as one's character is molded into that of a proactive and persistent individual. No person, fantastic concept, theory or approach can ever replace the fuel that turns boys and girls into men and women, and ordinary people into headlines on the cover of Time Magazine. That fuel can be defined in one six-letter word ... vision.

What is the definition of success? Success can be measured in more ways than the number of times we run yellow lights. It is measured in the quality of a relationship with a significant other. It is manifest in the strength of a family. It is also evident in seemingly insurmountable personal challenges that are overcome. Keeping in mind that each of these elements of success is valuable and justifiably correct, let's remember that this book is about sales. In other words, the type of success I will address is the kind measured in financial freedom.

Imagine yourself in what you consider a financially successful state. Let the cosmic array of possibilities engulf your mind, taking you to a realm that you have never allowed yourself to enter for the depreciating subconscious chastisement that it's not realistic. Do us both a favor. Kick that thought to the curb. In sales, your self-belief is equal to your success.

• How much money is in your bank account?

• What kind of car are you driving?

• How many cars do you own?

• What does your home look like?

• What kind of neighborhood do you reside in?

• How much investing have you done?

• How much free time do you have?

• Are you enjoying working with your current company?

• What type of people do you work around?

If we were to look at every book out on the market at present, we could find hundreds, even thousands of books boasting methods and theories that will improve confidence, sales, and the bottom line—the amount of money in your bank account. The tactics, methods, and well-crafted counsel available for public consumption are generally correct. But truthfully speaking, knowledge of the greatest concepts and theories in the world will not help you drive the Porsche or get you the beach house in Cancun.

Here's what I'm getting at. I'm talking about application. I'm talking about effort. I'm talking about change.

Fifteen of America's youngest financially successful sales reps through the summer sales industry are about to lay it all out—their background, how they were introduced to the industry, and how they have progressed as salespersons. Not only are they considered gurus because of their financial success, but their leadership, determination, and sheer hard work set them apart. These are real people, with real stories, who do real work. What a pleasure it was to interview them individually, and see how their lives changed through involvement in this relatively unheard of industry.

Embark with me on a journey to unlock the minds of these gurus who have figured summer sales out. Open your eyes to identify and apply principles that will aid you in your current or future involvement with sales. It should feel like the tickle of cool water from a sprinkler on a hot summer's day. Your thirst for areas to improve will be quenched. Your desire to create vision for yourself will be stimulated. Your everyday tools of the trade will be sharpened and enhanced. Life is too short not to do it right. Let this day mark the beginning of a new day and a new way of life.

This book includes the following:

• Introduction Sections: The nature of summer sales—what it is, what it offers, and who can do it.

• Excerpts of interviews with leaders in the summer sales industry.

• Scrutinizing Success: Specific categories to which each of the sales gurus contributed. Study and implementation of these sections will increase your personal power not only in sales, but in many other aspects of your life. You will be surprised at how many parallels there are to successful living strategies. These sections include self tests and checklists at the end of each chapter for you to monitor your progress.

• Biographies of Sales Gurus: I personally interviewed each of these individuals to find the characteristics that drew success in summer sales.

Much of this information is anecdotal. It builds character and gives rookie salespeople skills they need ... By working the summer sales program every day, the ones that thrive want to do it over and over. As young people mature, they grow stronger in their convictions. Many of the young people in this industry have gone on to other careers in just about every line of work: scientists, doctors, lawyers, even football players. They have all benefited from the summer sales industry. —Joe Clark Clark Pest Control Owner

Learn from these sales gurus. What is the difference between them and their not-so-successful counterparts? What benefits are they enjoying that you would also like to enjoy? Their minds have been unlocked, and the precious gems of their experience are lying on the pages ahead. Prepare yourself for an enlightening reading experience: one which you will not soon forget as you apply principles and set the ball rolling in your specific sales career. Prepare to learn. Prepare to apply. Prepare to succeed.

Now it's time for the fun (and learning) to begin! You may find it helpful to keep a notebook and pencil nearby as you read, Be mindful to jot down ideas that come to you and can be applied in your sales career. As my professors in college used to repeat every day before lectures, "Good students take notes!"

Chapter Two

What is the Summer Sales Industry?

The summer sales industry is one that gives financial and development opportunities to people of all age, race, and background.

Most of the salespeople interviewed for this book come from a history with Clark Pest Control, a family-owned business in California for over 50 years. Pest Control is only one of many different branches of the summer sales industry. Other well-known products sold in this industry include satellite dishes and home security systems.

The summer season generally consists of four months—May to August—that a sales representative travels to a destination city, resides in a company-designated apartment, and sells the company product or service door-to-door daily. Sales representatives are responsible for paying rent out of the 100 percent commission paychecks.

Because it is a 100 percent commission paying job, there is no limit to the amount of money a sales representative can pocket by the end of the summer. The more hard work a representative puts into the program, the more he or she typically earns. Rookie salesmen earn an average of $25K their first summer.

Each company differs as to pay-scale percentages, and how often paychecks are distributed.

Brad Stokes: "I graduated from college without any debt, made a great down payment on a home, paid off cars, and have a nice little nest egg in the bank," said Brad. "It gave me huge financial freedom. It allowed me to start things up for myself." In the three years Brad worked for Clark Pest Control, he made a whopping $130K. "That's for just a little over nine months," he said, "but it gave me freedom—freedom to start a family and freedom of business."

Butch Gagnon: Financial gains from summer sales have enabled Butch to vacation regularly in Brazil, make business investments, spend time with his wife and son, and study hard for the next time around.

Chris Pugmire: Free time is not just a phrase in Chris' vocabulary—it is reality. Eight months out of the year are his on which to capitalize and pursue his dreams. "What other job would give me the opportunity to make $100K in four months, then take the rest of the year to do whatever I want?" he said.

Dan Bigelow: Outside of the character development and skill-sets he obtained through participating in summer sales, the greatest benefit Dan saw was that he could work for four months during the summer, without needing to work for the remaining eight months of the year. "It allowed me to focus on school, life, and family," he said. "It is great to be able to go to school without having to work at the same time."

Jared Bitton: At the conclusion of the summer selling period, Jared returned to college behind the wheel of a sharp new car, and enough money in his bank account to pay for his apartment and tuition fees with plenty to spare. Because of the success he saw through the summer sales program, Jared graduated from college completely debt free.

Luke Alm: "I am so grateful for my experience and time spent in doing summer sales," Luke said. "It has helped me in so many ways. The experience of selling and being successful in selling is great to put on a résumé and help you in future endeavors."

Melissa Hafen: "Selling has blessed my life; it enables me go to school debt-free, and allows me to focus at school while I'm at school, since I don't have to work a crazy-hour job to be able to pay for everything."

Shawn Woods: Selling pest control in the summer months has opened up noticeable financial doors for Shawn and his wife. The couple both graduated from college with their Bachelors degrees, bought a condo and a car, all of which they did without going a penny into debt. "We could never have done it without summer sales," he said. "Summer sales gave me self-confidence and financial independence."

Chapter Three

Avoiding the Rat Race

We are each in a rat race toward survival and financial independence. We scramble just to pay the bills each month, though we each desire to be successful and free from the burden of financial requirements.

Individuals typically enter the race at a young age, around the time they enter college. Tuition, books and housing, among other impeding monetary obligations do not just creep in, they overwhelm. If scholarships or federal financial aid do not cover the expenses of merely attending school—not to mention living expenses—debt barrages the young adult in a hurry.

In 2009, 56 percent of Americans were in debt. Debt is like being behind prison bars; as time passes the view remains the same but the walls perceptibly close in. The room gets smaller. Chains slowly wrap around the legs that uphold the individual, their vice-like grip offering no fighting chance of escape. All that remains of an individual is hopelessness.

How Sales Gurus Escaped the Rat Race

Summer sales employment, which lasts for 120 days from the end of April through the end of August, provides sales representatives the opportunity to make at least four times as much as they would working full-time at close to minimum-wage for the same time period. At $7 an hour, 40 hours a week, for 16 weeks (excluding taxes), an employee would earn close to $5,000. In striking contrast, the average rookie summer sales rep pockets $20K-30K by the end of the summer. As sales reps return, earn residual income off previous accounts, lead teams, and take other opportunities, their income can exceed $100K per season.


Excerpted from Elite Sales Gurus by Shawn Thompson Kristy Hunt Copyright © 2011 by Shawn Thompson with Kristy Hunt. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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