Why taking NO risks is SUPER RISKY if you’re in sales?
Dale is one of ‘those’ people who are all over social and LinkedIn. He estimates he has been a guest on close to 160 podcasts in the last two years. He is in high demand.
With a background in copier sales, I have a soft spot for Dale, I have lots of copier clients myself and I strongly believe some of the best sellers come out of the copier space.
In this episode we talk about the mistake many sellers make – and here is the killer – they’re not conscious they’re making it.
Dale says, by focussing too much on the process of selling, in an inauthentic way… we actually increase the level of risk we take as a seller. Being bland, being the brown cardigan is not the best way to sell.
Make 100 calls, get 20 conversations, create 3 opportunities, close 1 sale is not a future you want to a part of.
What does the real you, the real seller look like, …what do you stand for and how would the real you interact with your clients and prospective clients?
The Sales Rebellion
Tactical Pipeline Growth
Welcome to the boss podcast this week. I'm absolutely delighted to be joined by a real legend and a true rebel of sales, and that's Dale Dupree. Welcome to the show, Dale.Dale Dupree:
Hey, Mark. Thanks for having me, bro. From the past, as we talked about earlier, I'm a day behind you. So to all your listeners, I actually have exposed things to Mark that he didn't even know happened in his past, which is kind of a revelation, in and of itself. But I digress. I'm getting off topic here.Mark McInness:
No, that's okay. Of course. I think we just ran through three o'clock in Florida on Wednesday afternoon versus seven o'clock Thursday morningDale Dupree:
Disney is still here. Yeah. Disney is still here. Mickey mouse is still a thing and all is good in the world. So.Mark McInness:
So Dale, you call yourself a leader, the sales rebellion. You're an Epic sales trainer. I love that term. Okay. copy a warrior. Now I've got a lot of people that listen that are copy of sales, X copy of sales. And you're also the host of "Selling Local" podcast. Can you expand on a couple of those? give some context to the people who perhaps have been living under a rock and don't know who you are.Dale Dupree:
Sure. Yeah. So my story actually begins back in 1984, when my father founded his copier firm, I was born a year later with toner running through my veins. And even though I didn't go directly into the copier of world, when I first started in my professional career, I was 17 signed to a record label which turned into a major record deal. and I, you know, ended up doing music for about five, six years, full-time I, did eventually come back. The prodigal son returned and I worked for my father's business for about four years before he sold. And I was gobbled up by a larger organization, which was pretty much the, predestined concept of the success of the sales rebellion. To expand on that and to kind of hone that in. I should say that, I had this aspiration of becoming a rockstar. I had this aspiration of going around the world and playing music and spending every single night, basically being able to meet with strange people and have some type of impact on their life and slowly build a community. And so the concept for me was, you know, I looked at it as this is not just business. This is also something that I will love doing. And that is my true calling, which is, again, this concept of what I believe sales truly is, which is to serve, to entertain, to create a very fun atmosphere, to create something safe as well, too, to create something that's desirable by our prospects. so I just hadn't really put two and two together around, you know, being a salesperson and being a musician, but slowly. Over time. You know, I started to realize that true calling, and after about 14 years of slinging boxes, as they say, being the number one sales rep, not just at my company, but also recognized by manufacturers across the US, I ended up starting the sales rebellion in 2019. And I've been doing it ever since.Mark McInness:
So now that makes a lot of sense. I wasn't aware of the music background there, but you're right. You know, musicians build tribes or, you know, are following I can really see how that makes sense now. So if you look at, at your profiles and the way that you've behaved in canvas online, and if you're not following Dale, you know, Dale's really easy to find on LinkedIn and Twitter. And I'd suggest that you do both. if you're on those platforms are quick curveball for your Dale, Twitter or LinkedIn, which ones your favorite?Dale Dupree:
Yeah, LinkedIn, a hundred percent. Although I was on Twitter first, LinkedIn is, is a great, great platform.Mark McInness:
Going back to Twitter, I find I'm having more fun on Twitter lately. I was a big LinkedIn fan. SoDale Dupree:
Now that they're banning people on Twitter, it's kinda, it's like, I'm trying my best to try and like actually get on that list. Right. So that's what I'm trying to do right now. So that I can go viral, stay on another platform, but I don't know if that's a good strategy or not. So.Mark McInness:
I think it might be easy to get banned on LinkedIn, to be honest, but anyway that's, that's pretty cool. So, so what sort of music were you playing? So let's not go spend too long on that, but I'm, I'm interested, rock and roll?Dale Dupree:
Sure. Yeah, it was, yeah, it was heavy metal. and it was underground heavy metal because we were actually a, a Christian band. I'm a faith-based human. and the band at 17, we were kind of going around and preaching the gospel on the side it's, as I like to joke where we get on stage entertain, have a great time headbang there'd be blood everywhere. And then afterwards I'd be talking to people about Jesus. So it was. It was a, it was definitely something that people were not expecting. And I think that, that kind of goes back to the origins of like who I am though, as well too. And also why I've been successful as a salesperson, because I was always interrupting the patterns of what people were typically expecting and pretty much like destroying assumptions and expectations from that perspective as well too, because you know, it was like when you came to see Dale or met with Dale or did anything with my band, you didn't really know what to expect. And it's the same thing with my sales walk as well, too.Mark McInness:
Yeah, well, that's a really nice way to slide into what I wanted to talk about. So. I've seen some of the things that you talk about. You know, you're very much positioning yourself, you're suggesting to others, you know, that we should be unique, we should stand out, you know, don't toe the line or fit into the same suit as everybody else, as a sales person. So have you got some, some ideas and thoughts that you can share about maybe why you think we do that? And if I reflect them on myself, you know, I'm, I'm the guy that's wearing the pale blues, you know, shirt fitting in with everybody else all the time. so why should we stand out and, you know, help us through that?Dale Dupree:
I think that really, this is the concept of who is our authentic self? What does that look like? How do we define that and how are we living it on a daily basis? So if I really answer this question, like I have to start at the roots of like, who am I? Okay. And so I sit back and I say, who is Dale? Well, listen, like Dale isn't the guy that wears, you know, a stuffy jacket and tie, you know, he wears bright red pants and, you know, a camouflage vest with a, you know, a $10,000 suit. So, you know, the, the identity of like what Dale always was, regardless of whether or not I was being the copier warrior, or I was being the leader of the sales rebellion arrived as being the front man for my band Imperial, I was always Dale at the end of the day. That Dale had was part of the flavor and that everything was influenced by my authentic self. And so I don't think it's =so much like, you know, you hear people say a lot about like, "Be the X in the sea of O's, or be the red dot in a, sea of blue. And, I like those sayings, but what I think they kind of do a disservice to reps around is that they kind of just encourage people to like, Oh, do something different than everybody else. But the thing is, is that, you are different. You listening right now, you are unique. And the thing is about that statement is that most of the time we just haven't really tapped into that part. We say things to ourselves and maybe even out loud, like I'm not that interesting. I don't have a story like Dale, I didn't have a dad that raised me. That was my best friend that I lost a cancer that I now have dedicated my company and my existence to I wasn't in a band touring all over the United States. I wasn't on Warner brothers records. I didn't see, you know, some of the top named musicians in the world doing weird drugs off of strange body parts, you know, in my early teens. Like, and I say all that to tell you that, you know, not just to kind of give you a story-esque look into my life, but also to say, you know when we sit back and we hear somebody else talking about themselves and their authentic nature and what drives what we see, you know, a lot of times we, compare ourselves to them, but you know, I was this guy that kind of sat around and said, you know, I love how other people are. And I felt in my heart, maybe people feel the same way about me. And actually I believed it, and I still do. So, instead of going around saying, "Maybe people will like me," I say, "I know my tribe is out there and I'm seeking to find them." And I started saying that in my copier career from the very beginning, because I thought to myself after my first failed sale, I can't do this over and over again. I can't be this thing that people expect me to be, or that the industry defines or tells me that I'm supposed to be because I have to meet the status quo of that industry. Instead. I said, it's not so much about being the X in a sea of O's as much as just about being Dale and that people will be attracted to what it is I bring to the table.Mark McInness:
Yeah, think you're, hitting the nail on the head there, but I also think a lot of people don't. Understand what's unique about them. You know, they can't see that little spark. And that's where, you know, you sort of almost need your mother to tell you where you're special. And then knowing that I don't know if that's a right, the right thing or not, but. Everyone's got something I'm convinced it, you know, like you've must have met many, many people I certainly have, and there's always something special going on with somebody, whether it's, you know, the size of a brain, the way they communicate, their level of empathy maybe they just were really flash shoes and I think we sort of go back to those outward views of uniqueness, you know, like someone wearing a red hat and a blue suit a business situation, you know, when it can be a lot more than that, you know, you can be the guy or the girl who's super empathetic or you know, the first person in the room to go around and meet everybody, you know, and just deliberately be a little bit more out spoken than everybody else, or a little bit more. Extroverted cause people remember that sort of stuff. And the reality about sales is if you know, chime in here Dale, but you know, if, if we're not remembered, how the hell are we going to sell anything?Dale Dupree:
Right. And maybe you're the introvert or the ambivert. Right. And cause the thing is, is like maybe you are the introvert. Well, the thing is, is that don't hide that. And so even though you're not the person, you're not Dale, you're not going around the room, throwing glitter everywhere, riding a pony. You know, making sure that everybody sees that you're in the room, but instead, you're going up to like one person and saying, Hey, this is really difficult for me, but I know I need to network in order to build my business and grow myself personally. And so I just, I saw you and I figured I'd come up and introduce myself. That will literally rock the world of the human that you're, that you're speaking to because in most cases, this is how we find our tribe as well, too. Right. So here we are talking about authenticity and tribe building. And the reality of that is eventually you're going to find people that find you familiar, and when they feel that familiarity, then they find relevance in that and they become attracted to what it is that you are.Mark McInness:
So if we use that example, and take that a little bit further, which I like by the way, if I'm the introvert I'm in a social situation, I'm probably going to seek out other introverts. Right. Simply because they're also going to be standing on the sidelines and know, not Chuck not in the beer drinking competition or whatever the case may be, but you're right.Dale Dupree:
It's a really good point. It's a really good point. And not to interrupt, but like let's expand deep into that thought real quick. And that, that, that is the concept of like what the status quo would tell you to do though, too. Right? So here's the thought is that, if we don't challenge ourselves and become uncomfortable in certain situations, then there is no true or typical growth. And so like, it is important to know to say that, okay, there's a couple of introverts over there and those are my people. It's also important to say, well, the thing is is that maybe that extrovert over there in the other corner, that's being extremely loud. Maybe they'll find familiarity in me as well, because they'll say, you know, my brother or my sister or my mom, or my best friend, you remind me exactly. Of that person. You remind me of this kid. I used to pass the basketball to back in my teen years, when I was playing, you know, on a local league, you remind me of the coach's son that I was on the swim team with it, you know, was afraid to jump into the deep end, you know, like there's still going to be a familiarity, even when we don't. Align with the person fully that we're speaking with at the same time. So I think that people really have to what they got to hear. And what we're saying here is that this is more about risk, you know, versus safety inside of what it is that we're trying to develop for ourselves, like being you and doing it in a way that is going to potentially lead to failure, because you're going to walk up to some people. And you're going to say the line that I just said earlier, and they're going to look at you like you're nuts and that you have eight heads. On, but listen, they'll never forget you in the same moment. Right? So that's what we have to be resolved around.Mark McInness:
Yeah. I love that risk analogy that you just used there, because I think the reason why we wear suits in inverted commerce is to fit in, right. Because that's the safe choice. So we're trying to play the middle field, right. We're trying to play both sides of the extrovert and introvert. and as salespeople were designed, were told we're often taught to play that middle ground so that you can quickly move to the left or right. So that you can appeal to everybody. And I think today, you know, you're better off get understanding that there's going to be people who won't resonate with you, that they're just not going to get you. They're just not going to buy from you because you're not the super loud guy, or maybe you are the super loud girl. And then like, you know, I'm an introvert and I'm not attracted to that type of a salesperson. So. By taking that middle ground and trying to take the risk out. I think you're also setting yourself up for the blandness, which has got its own level of risk that people perhaps don't measure or don't quantifyDale Dupree:
Yes, it's a, it's such an important statement because. We do. We take the simple path. We take the straight and narrow. We stay away from what we perceive as risk. And we miss the entire point, which is that the true risk is staying the same and like, and not a good risk either like that. There's no good in that risk whatsoever. That just takes us into failure over time. It's it is the status quo. It is the mediocrity of, of a lifestyle that. So many people that have walked the surface have kind of forced themselves into living and not just in the past, but in the present and will in the future as well too, because they didn't sit back and say to themselves, what is the true risk? that I'm calculating here at the end of the day, because if it's like, I just don't feel comfortable doing that compared to. I might not actually get out of life when I want, you know, then, then, you know, really like, it's easy for me to look at that personally and say, well, obviously I need to head toward the risk. That's going to give me the reward right. More than anything, than I need to be like, worried about being uncomfortable in the situation. But again, a lot of times it's hard for people to weigh those two things or even see them that way in the first place. Most time it's perceived as it's, it doesn't matter if I do this cause I'm still going to be successful. I still have a job. I'll still make money. People will still buy it from me. I'll still get paid, but that's not the point of life. The point of life is that you're leaving a legacy and that if you really truly want to impact communities and you truly want to serve people as a sales person, if that's your heart. Then you have to be something bigger than just the guy or girl that knows pain points in the Sandler sales funnel, better than anybody else like that's mediocrity. And they truly is. And I'm not trying to talk smack about other sales training groups. As a matter of fact, I'm a Sandler, right? I did three years of that, but you know, I, exposed for myself, you know, the simplicity of processes that keep us shackled to mediocrity, you know, because I started to say to myself, well, there are things even in sales training that, people teach us. That don't allow us to risk and they don't produce that kind of transparent and altruistic outcomes that our buyer deserves. Not that we deserve, but that our buyer deserves. We put ourselves on a pedestal too much in sales, and we have to stop doing that.Mark McInness:
Well done very, very well. So I really like that. And again, you know, if you want to get a snapshot, have a look at Dale's LinkedIn page, have a look his Twitter feed. So you live this, I mean, this clearly is working. For you and has ever since the rock and roll days So you're the man on that front, but he called youself? Man. Wizard, destroyer of Monday blues. Oh, you must've tried it to salespeople by now. Right. So how long have you been doing that? A couple of years. Full time.Dale Dupree:
Yeah. So I'm coming up on my second year anniversary next month.Mark McInness:
So you must have trained hundreds of salespeople. I would imagine, right?Dale Dupree:
But what's the two things you think that we stuff up as salespeople all the time. Like, you know, like if you hadn't just picked two, what do you think? The two things that we, you know, every time you go into a room in the back of your mind, you're probably thinking, this is what they're getting wrong.Dale Dupree:
What I find, I think what I find funny and because it's so consistent when I walk in somewhere is that when I walk into a room, people, you know, people are, they're ready with the pen and, and you know, or their, note pad, or their notes on their phone or their laptop. And they're ready to basically hear me, tell them how to do their job better than they can already do it. And the issue is, is that, is that the expectation that salespeople lead with is around. I need to crush my quota and, and so that means I need to, Be a slave to metrics essentially. And in the process of be in that slave to metrics, I'll get better at my job. And I'm being a little sarcastic there obviously, but, again, the outlook for salespeople is so freaking like ABC it's so generic. It's so bland. Okay. I need to make a bunch of calls, make a bunch of emails. Stop into a bunch of places so I can set an appointment and close the deal. But the thing is, is that there's an origin story to all salespeople. And there's a self discovery process that has to happen as well, too. You know, if I hadn't been on tour and even, you know, started my career in a place where. I had the most amazing mentor and teacher, they was patient with me and allowed me to, fail and take my time to hit my quota. I would have never learned these things in the first place. I'm super grateful to my experiences, but I was able to back and say, you know what? I struggle with depression. And you know what I struggled with self-worth and I struggle with, time management and that, my struggle with time management isn't even. The basis of time management, it's the origins of that are that I am afraid of screwing things up. And so, and so, because of that, tend to put off things that are important. Like never start them in the first place, because I don't want to, to have to worry about failing because I can't perfect a process around it. And so this is a, this was a young age that I learned these things and I had to sit back and say, Wow. I like the first thing I truly need to do is it's not to worry about whether or not I wrote an 80 word email and then it hit all the pain points of my buyer and got me an appointment it's that I need to assess and sit back and said like, why do I exist? What, what impact do I want to leave? Because then when I write that 80 word email, it moves mountains. It doesn't just set me an appointment. gets. Everyone in the office talking, and I start to create a reputation around being something even greater than a salesperson in the first place. I just posted about this recently, but this is a very good example of it. I suppose, reasonably that I lost a deal at an account that it was an inbound. Lead, it just kind of came to me and sat on my lap and they were getting three quotes. And now we just figured we'd throw you into it. And, and I, I heard every word, right. I heard, and I knew that I wasn't going to win the deal. And I was just some kind of pity quote, you know, for the boss. And, and so I said, I'll tell you what, I'm happy to provide you with something. But I have no expectation of winning this deal. I told that to them when I was talking to them, by the way. And because again, I believe in radical transparency with people, because I believe that shows our true authenticity. I said, so let me put everything together for you. Give me two days and you'll have it in your inbox. Well, day two shows up in the inbox is just a link to a video, nothing else. And so then they watched this video and I created a very unique video that I'll expose a little secret. I use a. An app outside of vineyard, by the way, video art is the group that I would, tell you that a hundred percent, you know, check those guys out. You can sign up for free, use their stuff, but I'm totally plugging people on your podcast. I'm sorry, but the there's a, there's a that I use where I could actually create interactive videos. And so I created a choose your own adventure style video that lasted about. Well about eight total minutes and had four different points in it where it makes you the viewer have to choose and make a decision around something I ask you. And so the screen pops up and there's like actual interactive things on the stream that you have to click well, this, I said this video and I got a response you know, shortly after like a week or so after. And it was basically saying, Hey, you know, thanks so much. But we decided to stick with, you know, the people that we. Had been using kind of thing. we chose them, blah, blah, blah. I didn't go into the details of my post. Right. But what I did is I thought, Oh, that's okay, thanks for letting me know in my head. And then I actually, I went, Oh yeah, that's right. I sent them that really cool video. And I went and the video and it had at the time, at the moment, it had like 50 plus plays. And I looked at that for a solid, like two minutes and thought 50 plays. Like that's insane. I sent it to one person that was showing their boss. Right. Well then another week past and I had over a hundred plays and this video ended up getting like 144 plays. Right. And total. And so like, I had created this impact with these people based on, again, the identity of like, Who is Dale. Dale is not this person that just, you know, whims his way through life, you know, in a mediocre state. Instead I choose legendary. I choose to make an impact on people, even if they don't buy from me. I choose to believe in the things that are deep seated and rooted into my very being and to wear them on my sleeve and every single thing that I do the exposure of that. and the truth of that is that that video actually led to people that eventually left the company, hitting me up. And giving me opportunities at other companies to come and work with them and basically telling me like, yeah, it's funny because they, they basically just said like, we have to do this, but you know, we're afraid to hire this guy because he seems crazy.Mark McInness:
Yeah. How many times do you think I would have read your write page? RFP if you'd just sent a standard you know,Dale Dupree:
a standard application maybe once, sorry. So, I think sales people might think that being innovative would be to put a color photo of themselves on the front of it, that our effect. And here you are sending a choose your own adventure video. And I think this is a really good example of exactly what you're talking about, about being unique and thinking outside the square a little bit, and just get the feeling that the only way you can do that is really taking a step back. Like you said, at the start there and just figuring out, you know, who am I, how do I want to present myself? You know, how can I be comfortably uncomfortable? And, what are the risks of, of staying the same versus one of the risks of just treating people the way I want to be treated or treating people, you know, the way the authentic Dale or the authentic Mark would be. So when I, actually, my not going to say I'm actually feeling pretty empowered after that, that little, speech, same answer that I think you've done a terrific job. What's your thoughts around People contacting with you or getting in contact. Are you keen for people to hook up with you? And you're interested in talking to people about sales training. Who do you trying what's, you know, pitch your business for us.Dale Dupree:
Yeah, sure. So, we train all shapes sizes. You know, there is no discrimination of who we train inside of rebellion. We have 10 plus coaches who have served, you know, from the capacity of, in the sales world, anywhere from 15 plus years to 25 plus years from VPs of sales roles in SAS organizations to copier reps like myself, to people that have worked in retail sales. Financial services, the whole nine yards. So, you know, we help manage services providers. We help people in the banking world. We help major sports teams across the United States, but we also help people all over the world. so we stretch, you know, from here actually all the way to New Zealand, just past you guys. And we also have folks in Australia as well. you're in Australia, right? am a man that was close. I was like, for a second, I was like, boom, like what if I just did the ultimate, the ultimate diss and called a, an Australian, a Kiwi. And that would have been bad, but anyway, so, we take on more than just. Groups though. Right? So one of our models is that we help businesses and that's our bread and butter. Right. But we also have a heart for the individual contributor. And so we have options for them, you know, whether or not they have the money to afford it or not. We have created very systematic way for us to be able to serve people and not just like, Hey, buy our videos, but to actually be present with someone and have accountability. You know, some of it is not as privileged as the others. And I say it that way, because I just want to make sure that people hear the expectation correctly, that, you know, sometimes you're in a group of like 50 people and you might not get your question answered live, but you always get an answer, right. Is how we look at it. And also. We believe in the community building aspect as well, too. So we put people in a public Slack group with one another and private channels as well, to be able to fellowship and to network and to build each other up and to grow, you know, furthermore than just doing some sales training. So, you know, we believe that what we're doing is a movement more so than anything else. And so we welcome all, you know, to come and look and see what we are doing and see if it is something that, meets the budget standards that they're looking to achieve, but also more than anything. That are willing to risk and dare to see things from a mighty perspective and to sit back and say, I want something better for my life and just to be a good salesperson. I want to be legendary. I want to be somebody that's remembered. I want to make impact. I want to be a better father, a better mother, a better husband, a better wife. I want to be better to my community is I want to be able to do something that is memorable for folks. I want to be able to feel fulfillment for myself, and I want to be a servant leader when people hear those words and can identify with what it is that we're truly teaching folks because our sales techniques are freaking awesome and you'll make a lot of money using the stuff that we do come on. I mean, that's a no brainer, but the big push. Is to make better people. We believe that the sales rebellion is the movement that will tear down the castles of the old guard and we'll build a kingdom for rebels everywhere.Mark McInness:
Wow, that's fantastic. And what's the best two or three ways for people to get in contact with you or the organization?Dale Dupree:
Yeah, sales were billing dot com is a great place to start or just Google Dale Dupree. If you want to go consume a lot more content there's pages on pages on pages. Free content out there for me, linkedin.com backslash backslash copier warrior at sales rebellion on any social site or backslash sales rebellion dependent on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, whatever it is, you're going to come find us, come hang out, come and just engage. Come be engulfed, you know, with, with sales, wisdom and knowledge. And we'd love to hear from you.Mark McInness:
Listeners you've heard from Dale Dupree. You've got to risk it to get the biscuit. Dale, thanks for joining us on the boss podcast.Dale Dupree:
You got it, man. I appreciate you having me on.