In this episode, Kay welcomes her guest, Wesleyne. A sales rockstar and leadership coach, Wesleyne shares her background and experience in sales. She discusses the challenges she faced as a sales manager and how she overcame them by individualizing coaching for her team members. The conversation shifts to the lack of women in sales and the importance of creating an equitable and inclusive environment. Wesleyne emphasizes the significance of mindset and personal branding in sales success. She also shares insights on sales strategies, stepping into the buyer's world, and personal growth.
Kay Miller interviews women in sales with proven track records, as they share their experiences, success strategies and tools you can use to crush your sales goals. Kay has a history of sales success, earning the nickname “Muffler Mama” when she sold more automotive mufflers than anyone in the world. Kay and her guests deliver actionable insights and real-world tools that will help you overcome obstacles, adopt a winning mindset, and maximize your sales results.
Kay is the author of the book, Uncopyable Sales Secrets – How to Create an Unfair Advantage and Outsell the Competition. Go to Amazon.com and search “Uncopyable Sales Secrets” to order the book, or click the link below.
Order Uncopyable Sales Secrets: amzn.to/35dGlYZ
Speaker 1 (00:00:00) - Welcome to Uncopyable Women in Sales. If you're looking for actionable insights and real world tools to turbocharge your sales starting tomorrow, well, you're in the right place. Your host, Kay Miller, earned the affectionate nickname Muffler Mama when she sold more automotive mufflers than anyone else in the world. In this podcast, Kay will talk to another superstar women in Sales as they reveal Uncopyable strategies you can use to rack up more leads, snag dream clients and take your sales numbers through the roof. Stay tuned and get ready to make more sales. And how about this? More money.
Speaker 2 (00:00:42) - I'm super excited about today's guest Wesleyne. And just like Beyonce and Oprah, she only needs one name. Wesleyne is a sales rock star strategist, leadership coach and thought leader. She has a passion for personal branding. If you're watching, note her signature red lipstick and is a strong supporter of women in sales. Wesleyne delivers killer sales strategies to B2B organizations offering valuable insights for sustainable growth. Wesleyne, welcome to the podcast.
Speaker 3 (00:01:15) - Thank you so much for having me.
Speaker 3 (00:01:17) - I'm excited to chat with you.
Speaker 2 (00:01:19) - You know, you interviewed me on your podcast, which is Transformed sales, and I recommend that, um, I think before, even before that, I had learned about you that you call yourself a recovering chemist, and I know you've been in sales as well as your consulting and sales leadership. So tell us a little bit about your background.
Speaker 3 (00:01:43) - Yes. So I am a recovering chemist and I started my career working in petrochemical plants. And I got to a point where I was like, I want some more people interaction. And I found myself always asking the sales people and the technical service reps that were customer facing like, why are we doing this testing? Why is this happening? So I found myself in sales and I tell people when I got into sales, I finally figured out what I wanted to be when I grew up and I loved everything about it. So I made a fast ascent from individual contributor to international sales manager and the first six months as an international sales manager, I failed miserably.
Speaker 3 (00:02:23) - I people were leaving, people were leaving my team. We were not hitting our numbers. And I was like, What's happening? Like, I'm a great salesperson. Why are you guys not doing what I need to do? The same thing that I did? I'm just telling giving you my playbook. It worked for me, right? It should work for everyone. And it didn't. So what I had to do was I had to take a step back and realize the onus was on me as a leader to not just have a team of mini me's, but to really help each person develop and grow as they needed to be individualizing my coaching and my development. And so within six months after that, we started hitting our numbers. We everybody on my team was hitting their numbers every single month and people weren't leaving the team. People were actually asking to be transferred onto my team. So what I do now is I work with organizations and we have a very leadership centric approach to sales. So if leadership is not invested in or involved, it's never going to work.
Speaker 3 (00:03:19) - So we trained teams and leaders together. We work with the leaders to ensure they're holding their teams accountable and really drive behavior based sales.
Speaker 2 (00:03:28) - I love that. And leadership does have such an impact on sales success. It just really informs the whole mindset and attitude of the team. So I really appreciate that perspective. And I know you were such a proponent of salespeople and as we just talked about, women in sales, which I think women in sales, we are lacking. And I would like your perspective on why that is and what we can do to change that.
Speaker 4 (00:03:58) - Oh, that's such a big question.
Speaker 3 (00:04:01) - That's a big question. So, you know, I'll break it down because I think within different industries or different, um, different place, different different organizations, things are a little bit different. So I'll break it down between a field salesperson and a person who is more like a remote sales person. So an SDR and type in field sales. One of the biggest challenges that people face is the travel requirement.
Speaker 3 (00:04:28) - So as a woman in sales, it's not. If you're a young woman of childbearing age, it's not easy to leave home and leave your children for a day or two days and then go do what you need to do and come back. Because as I experienced as a woman in sales, I would literally have to make sure I had dinner cooked for the whole week. I would have every all the lunches in little baggies in the fridge. I would iron all the clothes. I would have everything done. So I'm still mom and then I'm still going out in the field to sell. And so and then when my youngest son was less than one years old, it was really important for me to nurse him. So if I was gone for more than a night, I would actually fly my mom with me so she could stay in the hotel room with him while I went to work. Right. And so those not everybody has access to that. Not everybody has that ability to bring that support along. And not everybody really is in that space where they want to be away from their kids for that long.
Speaker 3 (00:05:28) - So before I flip to the other side, I'll see if you have any questions about what I just shared.
Speaker 2 (00:05:33) - Well, I did talk to someone recently and she said she has young kids and one of her supervisors or managers said, who's taking care of the kids? And in a lot of cases, you took care of your kids. You have two boys, I think, right? Yeah. But a lot of times the husband, the partner can also, you know, support that and be a part of that. So I think women face some issues that aren't always even real.
Speaker 3 (00:06:03) - Yes. And, you know, like my male colleagues, I started asking what you have to do before we came to this one week, um, training here at the home office. They're like, I just packed my bag. I'm like, Yeah, huh? So let me tell you what I had to do. Yeah, let me tell you what I had to do. And so really what, what helps in that field sales role is having a manager that's empathetic.
Speaker 3 (00:06:24) - And so one of the greatest successes of my career is in the year 2014, when my youngest son was born. I took, you know, six weeks off to to be at home and be with him. And I was number two in sales. And I didn't lose. I was number one until December when somebody had huge orders and they just blew the year out. But I took six weeks off, six weeks off, and I was still number two in sales. And that year I exceeded my quota by 30%. And so my son was born in May. I had the rest of the year and I was still doing what I needed to do. So even breaking the bias that management has towards women in sales or a woman with children, that is something that if we get more leaders to be inclusive of people having those challenges, then we understand and we can meet them where they are. Because when you have to think about, you know, your home and your work and doing this and doing that, it makes you more efficient at work.
Speaker 3 (00:07:24) - It makes you territory plan better. It makes you ensure like, okay, so if I'm going to Denver, I need to pack my schedule because I only have three days here and I don't want to have to come back here in two months. So let me be efficient. Let me be effective. Let me focus on how can I close more deals on Zoom or on the phone Like you have that strategic thought.
Speaker 2 (00:07:43) - I love that it forces you to be creative in your thinking. And once again, leadership is really important in that because they have to understand where you're coming from and what is your perspective on what companies are missing if they don't include women and don't encourage them to be part of the sales process.
Speaker 3 (00:08:05) - You lose that first. You lose a diversity of thought. And if you have a sales team where everyone is the same age, the same gender, the same race, everybody usually thinks the same. I did a sales training not too long ago and I noticed that the everybody in the room, they had been in the industry between 50 to 30, 50 to 30 years.
Speaker 3 (00:08:31) - Yeah, because I was like, Wow, you've been doing sales almost as long as I've been alive. Like, wow. And I'm in the front of you guys. And so the the challenge with that is everybody in that room, they thought the same. Everybody in that room, they had the same philosophies. They did business the same exact way because that is what they knew. And so when you add women into onto a sales team, typically a woman who is interested in sales because, you know, sales is not easy. You have to you have to go against the status quo. You have to be a hard negotiator. There are so many things that you have to do to be a woman in sales. So that means you're pretty confident, you're you're talkative. Right. And so when you get a woman who comes in there and she's like, well, why don't we do it this way? Or have we thought about it that way? So it helps in that regard. And there are so many studies that sales teams that are not just diverse, it has to be equitable.
Speaker 3 (00:09:27) - It is. Does everyone have an equal seat at the table so you can have a few women on the sales team, but if they're all junior salespeople, then that is not equitable. Yeah, you've checked boxes, but it's not equitable. Those women are all of the men going out and, you know, hanging out at the bar and then they're not inviting the women. That's not inclusive. You're not going to keep those women. So it's not just hiring them, it's how do I retain them? How do I upskill them? How do I promote them?
Speaker 2 (00:09:54) - Right? Having a culture that supports them. And I love your point of diversity, encouraging, innovative thinking. You know, we talk about thinking outside of the box. In the end, Copyable philosophy, we even say don't just think outside the box, build your own box, build your own definition of success. And you have definitely done that. So that's an incredible asset to a team to think like that. So I appreciate your your thoughts on that.
Speaker 2 (00:10:26) - I want to ask you what you feel like the most important qualities that a salesperson needs to be successful, whether a man or a woman.
Speaker 3 (00:10:36) - Mm Let me.
Speaker 2 (00:10:38) - See. And I'm going to guess one of them that you talk a lot about is mindset, confidence and mindset. And I agree that that is so critical in sales much more than you have to say this or you have to say that if you have the mindset and the confidence. So talk about that and how you create that.
Speaker 3 (00:10:59) - Yeah, you know, the battle starts in your mind. If you have negativity swirling around your brain, then it doesn't matter how much cold calls, training, how much proposal review, how much meeting training. But if you have already lost a battle in your mind, you've lost it. And even when I go in and I work with sales teams, we spend the first 60 to 90 minutes and we do just mindset training like we are talking about all of these self-limiting beliefs and the things that are actually holding you back from selling, and it literally unlocks the room.
Speaker 3 (00:11:32) - It takes people down, they break their barriers down because I make everybody share. I'm like, Well, what is the thing that is holding you back? And it's like, we're all human. So even the top salesperson has something that's holding them back. The bottom salesperson is like, okay, so I'm not alone. And so when you get your mind in the game and how do you get your mind in the game, it takes work. Like you have things that have happened in your childhood. You have had jobs, you've had bad managers, you've had bad cultures. And so all of that baggage is like on your shoulders. And if you don't do the hard work to break those thought bubbles, I like to call them and really figure out, okay, what is holding me back? Focus on that one thing for a week, a month, a quarter, overcome that, then move to the next thing. And as you break those thought bubbles, what happens is the skills that you're learning, they start to become a little bit easier.
Speaker 3 (00:12:23) - So I would say the number one skill set or the number one thing that helps a sales person be successful is a growth mindset. So never staying stuck and always trying to figure out how can I do this a little bit different? How can I do this a little bit better?
Speaker 2 (00:12:39) - That's that's great information and advice. And I do notice in your background and a lot of people will be listening, that you have surrounded yourself with positive messages. And I know you're a believer in affirmations. And I actually just realized when I was sleuthing around about you that you have a new podcast besides transformed sales that is Love Letters from God.
Speaker 3 (00:13:06) - Yes.
Speaker 2 (00:13:07) - Talk about an inspired topic. Tell us about how that came about.
Speaker 3 (00:13:13) - So I, um, I really am a firm believer in putting my oxygen mask on first. So I'm up every morning anywhere from 445 to like 515. So that gives me, you know, a good hour and a half before I have to get my boys up and ready for school. And so in that time, that's when I'm journaling, that's when I'm praying, that's when I'm reading my Bible, I'm talking to God.
Speaker 3 (00:13:37) - And during those moments I get messages. Like I'm like, that's like, okay, share this with people. And so I was sharing messages just via text message, and somebody said, How can I subscribe to these? The angelic voice of Wesleyan praying for us every day. I was like, That's a good idea. I never even thought about it. And so somebody actually asked that question. Then it sparked something. So again, growth mindset. So I was like, I'll do this more widely. And it's amazing that you actually brought that up today because I was looking at the analytics from the podcast this morning, and there are people all over the world, like in places that you would think that they're that, you know, they don't worship God. So like Tanzania and India and the Philippines, like literally I have listeners from all over the world and all over the US too. So that's how I started.
Speaker 2 (00:14:29) - And I listen to some of them. They are very positive, very encouraging, and I hadn't really thought of your voice as angelic, but it is very lovely and very soothing.
Speaker 1 (00:14:41) - Today's podcast is sponsored by the acclaimed book UN Copyable Sales Secrets How to Create an Unfair Advantage and Outsell Your Competition by Kay Miller. Put the secrets in this book to work and you'll make more sales, grow your network and become a top earner. See the show notes or go to Amazon.com and search for UN Copyable sales secrets to order the book. Right now.
Speaker 2 (00:15:07) - I want to ask you a little bit about the importance of personal branding, because I know that you do a great job of that and the whole philosophy of this podcast is becoming unconquerable. You need to stand out from everyone else. People don't buy from you because you're the same. They buy from you because you're different. So what is your take on how a sales person can brand themselves and or set themselves apart?
Speaker 3 (00:15:35) - It's really important to understand what's important to you. And so in the first step and the first thing you want to do in that personal branding is like, what are my values? What's important to me? What are the things that I'm really, really passionate about? And once you figure out what you're passionate about and what your values are, then you start talking about them.
Speaker 3 (00:15:57) - And I I'm a video person, so do a lot of videos, but you can write about it. You can do audio clips about it, but like getting your voice out there is really the key to building that personal brand. And what I learned through my journey is I used to keep my faith and business separate, and I realized that I didn't have to do that. This is a part of who I am. And so when somebody shows up on a call with me, it doesn't matter if they're a believer or not. They're like, they're like, Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to curse. And I'm like, okay, you know, it doesn't offend me, right? But you can I can tell that they already know because on my LinkedIn I have both of my podcast and it's like, so this is still part of one of my core values. And so establishing what your core personal values are and really sticking to it. Like I literally I consistently show up on LinkedIn. I've been posting every weekday for at least the past two and a half years.
Speaker 3 (00:16:50) - Every single weekday I post something and did it. It took a long time to start seeing like I would have one person liking it, two people liking it. I wouldn't have people talking about it or seeing me in person and saying stuff about it. And even if you're not getting the response, if people are not liking or commenting, they're watching. I have somebody who I met, somebody did an introduction and I spoke to her recently and she said, I read your LinkedIn post every single day. I really like this one and this one. And oh, when you talked about that and that's what it's about, she's not actually liking or commenting. Never have she ever. But she sees it. And so your ideal client, they're watching, they're looking out there at what you're doing.
Speaker 2 (00:17:34) - And I have noticed and admired how consistent you are on LinkedIn. And it's one of my challenges. And you post really good stuff. I mean, you don't just post a little saying why is saying, you know, you take deep dives into topics and that you know, one of them is women in sales and why are there only five women at this international sales meeting? And you really discuss important issues.
Speaker 2 (00:18:00) - And of course, consistency is also important in sales, in consistency and perseverance and determination and just keeping on keeping on. Right?
Speaker 3 (00:18:13) - Absolutely. And, you know, the thing is, it's we sometimes get in our head and then we get scared of bucking the status quo. I had somebody a couple of years ago tell me, no, no, no, you have to stay inside the box. If you buck the status quo too much, you know, you're a black woman in there. Not many of you in this space. I'm like, That's exactly why I need to be who I am, Right? And you to be true to who you are and honor who you are. And when you think about like, okay, but what happens if I rub somebody the wrong way? They're not your person. Well, what happens if somebody doesn't like what I say? That's good. Everybody shouldn't agree with you. Like, think about it, flip it into a positive. So a lot of times we talk ourselves out of things, flip it into a positive.
Speaker 3 (00:18:58) - And when you learn to start flipping things into a positive, then you're like, okay, so but what about the 25 people who do see it and are inspired? And even in some people are like, Well, you're giving away so much information and people can just do this themselves. Those aren't my people. My people see it and they're like, I need to do that. I have no time. I need help. I'm going to call this lead, right? And those are your people. Don't worry about giving away too much stuff. You have to build your bench, right?
Speaker 2 (00:19:27) - And and again, in the Copyable philosophy, we talk about the moose, which is your target market. And as you point out, don't try to be everything to everyone that does not work. You have to decide who you'll resonate with. And you are a great example of someone who is authentic. And some of us are in the position and I know you've sold some really technical things, but some of us are in the position of selling something that is basically a commodity that people can get elsewhere.
Speaker 2 (00:19:58) - So what is the part of your copyable equation? It's you and it's what you stand for and your branding. You know, we talk about a branding promise and I think that your willingness and focus on serving other people sets you apart. How do you speak to that as far as thinking about the other person versus all about you?
Speaker 3 (00:20:22) - Yeah, our philosophy is serve don't sell. Sometimes there are people who come to us with challenges and problems and I'm like, Yeah, we're not the best provider for you. I mentioned this group of. Um, of men that I did some training with. And the manager was like, okay, so what's the next step? What are you going to do? I said, Nothing. I was like, I there's no ongoing work. There's no coaching I can do. They're stuck in their ways. If you want account managers, you have strong account managers, but if you need to grow the business, this is not the sales team you need. And so I don't want you to invest your money in a team that I know in 12 months isn't going to get you to where you need to go.
Speaker 3 (00:21:03) - And so I ensure I educate my clients and I'm like, this is the best path forward. And so going on this path forward is going to give you this. And sometimes it's not us. And so that's what you have to do. Your job is to step into your customer's world. It is to step into the prospect's world and understand the problems they're having and align your solutions with their problems. And if their problems and your solutions don't align, then it's better to say no to that business because it will become a headache. You will not deliver the results. You will have an unhappy client. So do that up front instead of taking their money and then they're mad at you and then you're stressed out trying to execute.
Speaker 2 (00:21:41) - Right? I think saying no to a sale is the ultimate credibility builder because then they know that you're not going to just sell them something. And I remember calling someone and the first question they said is, Well, what are you selling? And I said, I don't know if I'm selling you anything.
Speaker 2 (00:21:59) - I can't answer that question until I know your situation and what you're looking for. So that kind of salesperson is somebody that's going to resonate with the clients. And if you want referrals and the word of mouth and all the things that help salespeople, you're right. Walking away from the wrong client is just as important as working with the right client.
Speaker 3 (00:22:23) - Absolutely.
Speaker 2 (00:22:25) - So what other we're kind of winding down here, but I would like to know what strategies, what other strategies you've got, the mindset. I know you've got determination. We've talked about working with the right customers. Are there any other strategies that come to mind that will help the listener of this podcast?
Speaker 3 (00:22:47) - Yes, I would say that the traditional way that most people have been taught to sell is, you know, you listen for the budget, you listen for the need, you listen for the authority, right? We use those acronyms to qualify deals. The right way to enter into a sales situation is to step into the buyer's world. And stepping into the buyer's world really means you listen to them and you uncover the problems, the challenges, the pain points that they're having, and you don't just jump in and fix them.
Speaker 3 (00:23:22) - You don't say, Oh, you're having a problem with lead generation. Oh, I have a solution for that. Oh, you're having a problem with too much, too many softwares. Oh, I have a solution for that. Oh, you need this. I have that like, so be humble and be in a point of being a student when you're in a sales call. If you put yourself as I am, I am a student, I am learning what this buyer needs and I am going to learn, understand, uncover, and then I'm going to come back later and I'm going to help them solve these problems that they're having. So listen, understand, uncover problems and challenges and then take your time away and connect again those problems with your solutions and then present to your buyer. This is what I heard you say. And everybody likes hearing their words back, spoken to them. Everybody likes to know that you are stepping into my world. So I think that would be that final tidbit of step into the buyer's world.
Speaker 3 (00:24:21) - Remove yourself and serve. Don't sell.
Speaker 2 (00:24:24) - That is great advice. I would like to go kind of backwards to one final point, and that is the fear of rejection, just the fear of approaching clients, because you seem like somebody who's always been really gutsy. I mean, you were a chemist, you were in highly technical sales fields. How do you get yourself to get over that discomfort, discomfort of approaching a new prospect?
Speaker 3 (00:24:53) - I am the expert in my products and my services and all things that I do, but the client is the expert in what they do. And that was one of the first things I had to learn, as I call myself as a baby sales rep, because I'm like, I don't know what you guys are doing. I don't I don't understand that, but I understand this thing that I'm selling. And I used to be in your shoes not too long ago because I worked as a chemist. And so one is knowing that you are the expert in what you do. And so having that confidence to know I know more about what I do and what I offer than anyone else in the world.
Speaker 3 (00:25:26) - And so if I'm asked a question about that, if somebody wants to know how I can help them, what I can do, I can answer that. I don't know what they do. And that's okay. It is really important for you to understand it's okay to not have all the answers. It's okay to say, Can you explain that to me a little bit more? And one of the things that I want new salespeople to do, it's really important for them to go learn from the customers. So just what I was talking about being a student, so if you are in that space, whether you're new or established, but you're uncomfortable in front of customers, you should go talk to somebody who has previously bought your stuff and say, I just have some questions. How did you use my product? How did you use my solution? What issues did it solve for you? How did it make your life better? What could I have done better and get their words and then you'll start speaking the buyers language.
Speaker 3 (00:26:15) - So when you go to that new person, you already understand what these are the things that people say in this industry. These are the words that they use and that helps you step into that buyer's world.
Speaker 2 (00:26:28) - Great advice. And, you know, you reposted part of our interview that we had together. And one of the words that I brought up is, is help the word help. And we like you said, you are the expert in your field. You can talk to your other customers. I totally recommend that so that you have a feeling of what they're going, you know, going through what their situation is. But people like to feel important and listen to. And when you ask your prospect, Hey, will you help me understand your business? People love to help. And it's very rare that people will say, No, I won't help you understand my business. They really like to be heard. Even if you do like you said, you've you've done your research, you've done your sleuthing and you know the issues, but you want to hear them from the buyer.
Speaker 3 (00:27:22) - Absolutely, yes.
Speaker 2 (00:27:25) - Very empowering. We are running out of time, but I would like to hear. Do you have any final words or advice to the women and maybe men? We don't hate men. We love men. And men are huge allies of women in sales. You know, we can't do it without them and we have to do it together. So what would be your parting advice to rev people up at the end of this podcast?
Speaker 3 (00:27:51) - I would say get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Many times as women or as men, we get into that spot where we're doing things the same way, doing things the way that they've always been done, and we're okay with that. And, you know, maybe we're kind of hitting our quota or we're kind of hitting our goals. But if you really want to start hitting those goals and exceeding those goals, get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Tap into new markets, start posting on LinkedIn, reach out to people that you haven't spoken to before. Whatever you're doing now, do just one thing different.
Speaker 3 (00:28:25) - And what I always say is each day you should get at least 1% better. So ask yourself every day, How am I going to get 1% better? I'm going to do one thing. It's just doing one little thing. So really get comfortable with being in those spaces where you're like, I don't know anything. I don't know what I'm doing here, or I'm trying this new skill or I'm going to record my first video for LinkedIn, I'm going to write my first post or LinkedIn, whatever that thing is. Start tapping into it.
Speaker 2 (00:28:53) - Exactly. And a lot of times the only way you can get comfortable is to start out being uncomfortable. There's just no way around it. And I feel like the things that we're most proud of are the things that were scary and uncomfortable, things that come easy, you know, whatever. But the things that are really challenging that we overcome, it's just really builds our confidence in a huge way. Absolutely. Wesley I would like to share with the audience where people can find you.
Speaker 2 (00:29:23) - And I know I recommend people follow you on LinkedIn and for goodness sake, like and comment on people's posts. There are so many lurkers and you know, as, as someone which might be you trying to build an audience on LinkedIn, it's really helpful to have that engagement. So I encourage our listeners to do that. So besides LinkedIn, which and you're Wesleyan, where can people find you?
Speaker 3 (00:29:48) - Um, they can go to our website, transform sales. Com or they can shoot an email, get help at transform sales.com.
Speaker 2 (00:29:56) - I love it. I love it. I will include your bio and contact information along with this podcast, Wesleyan. It has been my pleasure to talk with you. You're somebody I really admire and I just feel honored that we were able to talk. So thank you so much.
Speaker 3 (00:30:15) - Thank you. It's been my great pleasure.
Speaker 1 (00:30:18) - Thanks for listening to this episode of Uncomfortable Women in Sales, Your Source for Secrets you can use to make more sales check the show notes for links and contact information.
Speaker 1 (00:30:28) - And if you enjoyed the podcast, please spread the word by subscribing, sharing and leaving a five star review. You can always learn more by going to Uncopyablesales.com/podcast. Until next time, go out and supercharge your sales like a true Uncopyable rock star.