But let me give you a little behind the scenes. Trust me, it relates to this week’s episode, this isn’t just a trip down memory lane.
Day 1. Our first event like this, and to be honest, not exactly my comfort zone – I’m not always a small talk guy.
But I was pretty relaxed because we had a guy on the ground in Atlanta doing all of our logistics and would be essentially shepherding all the guest speakers in place, navigating where we go at what time, Sign ins, swag bags… he had things covered.
So I wake up morning of the event, get a good breakfast at my hotel, get changed up and walk to the event. It’s about 7:30am…things don’t start til 8:30. I’m relaxed and calm because the pressure is not on me.
Then I get a text message. Our guy is not just sick… he’s out. Down and out. Like heading to a clinic because he hasn’t stopped vomiting for a few hours.
I’ve been in a few pressure situations over my career, so I don’t exactly panic…but I also don’t feel I have everything I need to succeed which means I’m not exactly comfortable. And then an attendee shows up… early, very early.
Hello Sean Grassi if you are listening.
I’m now scrambling to get people checked in, hand out swag, give out badges… and it’s not the best start in the world.
People are filing in, they are in the room we rented, but it’s deathly quiet in there. I’ scrambling in the front of the lobby….and the vibe is…shall I say, poor.
Then I see Bill Guertin come around the corner, one of our guest speakers. He takes one look at me and says…here, I got this, and he walks into the room with our guests.
Next thing I know I hear chatter, and laughing, and cavorting and cajoling. Bill came in and just started to own the room.
I had a mentor once who said – leaders change the temperature of the room when they enter. Think about that for a second – the idea is, everyone can feel a leader when they enter. It’s a changing presence, an attention grabber.
Bill has that, and more. Right then I thought, OK, this guy is good, he can control a room with ease…which isn’t easy. Then I started to listen in, then I started to check his resume, then I started to admire.
Bill has worked with over 100 professional sports teams to help train their sales staff… from the Boston Celtics, to the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Football teams, basketball, baseball, NASCAR, hockey – if you have a sports event and a sales staff, Bill is the guy to train them.
And, lucky us, he’s our guest this week as we dig deeper into the role that comprises a huge percentage of sports employees.
Here’s Bill Guertin – and stay tuned at the end of the show for a special offer from Bill’s company ISBI
Listen to the episode for the answers!
1: You’ve been in the sales game since 1992 – specifically in sports sales since 2004 – you are truly the expert in the field having worked with over 100 professional sports teams. I’ll make the first questions really simple…or complex in it’s simplicity, you decide… why sales? Why has sales been your calling?
2: What I think I’m most impressed with about you, and there are many things, but I know how difficult it can be to get in with pro teams as an outside resource. How did you go from being a sales manager of a local radio station in Kankakee, Illinois to the trusted sales trainer of pro sports?
3: Go back to the beginning – what was the first team you worked with, and what was that experience like?
4: how much have your techniques and trainings changed since you first started sales training?
5: What would you say are the core fundamentals of being strong in sports sales?
6: You’ve worked with teams in every major sports league… does the technique change from sport to sport since the audiences have different wants and needs and desires… or is selling sports a pretty uniform process?
7: Sales get a bad rap – but they are the lifeblood of every organization, especially in sports. Of the 10,641 jobs currently active on work in sports, 4616 are connected to sales, according to my daughter who does all the math in this family, that’s 44% of all the available sports jobs.
Why don’t colleges, specifically sports management programs, spend more time teaching sales principles to their students?
8: You’ve been travelling around the nation teaching sales to organizations for the last decade plus, but now you’ve developed an online teaching platform…tell us a little more about this program.
9: Have teams embraced this new virtual training platform?
10: Can individuals sign up to learn sales techniques through your program, or is it just run through the teams?
Look I’m not a sales guy, but in doing this podcast and speaking to tons of executives – sales skills are incredibly important for career in this industry. Everyone from agents to marketers to operations to game presentation… they all know and can function in a sales/revenue generating role.
It’s important. These are the skills that will help set you apart from the crowd.
I’ll say it again – if you can prove that you can generate revenue, you will always have a role. It’s a money world.
To help you on that path, Bill and his team at ISBI have created an online training certification that is respected across all of professional sports – check out workinsports.com/isbi to sign up for a free career consultation with Bill and his team… he’s so connected and knows what it takes to make it in this business… again that is workinsports.com/isbi
Check it out today – and thanks to Bill Guertin!