ABOUT TODAY’S GUEST | JOSH MUELLER
Josh Mueller is a prime example of a truly excellent professional salesperson. As a 19-year veteran of the Cutco/Vector business, Josh has risen to become the #3 all-time Cutco sales rep. He is a National Consultant for various company sales programs, and serves as a key trainer and developer of legions of sales representatives. He and his wife Amiee are the founders of Vast Action, a marketing and consulting business for entrepreneurs and professional salespeople. Josh is a key conduit through which great ideas are innovated and developed, both in and out of the Cutco sphere. In this conversation, he shares actionable ideas for navigating times of uncertainty and change as a sales professional.
Q&A WITH JOSH MUELLER
Q: What were your initial thoughts as a small business owner and a professional sales person when this crisis began to unfold in the last couple of weeks?
- There was a lot of worry and uncertainty for sure. Overnight we lost hundreds of events as they were cancelled nationwide and that was a big deal to us.
- I was staying in an Air BnB with a group of people that had just got back from staying in Paris for a week. I had a lot of what if questions. What if I can’t travel? What if I can’t get home to my wife? What if sales disappear? What if we struggle financially? What if I get sick? How do I keep my wife and family and employees from getting sick?
Q: What do you think are some elements of the mindset that help people move through this type of challenge?
- Focus on the things we can control versus focusing on the things we can’t control. It’s so easy to get caught up in the negativity of what we can’t control.
- Finding creative solutions that adapt and tailor our approaches, personally and professionally, to the reality of the circumstances that we are facing at this time.
- I reach out to people who are more innovative than I am to find out what they’re doing to have success.
Q: Who are some of the sales people for Cutco that are having the most success lately and what are some things they’re doing?
- People are encouraged to look outside of our business for best practices and strategies that can inform how they work their businesses inside Cutco.
- There’s really no right or wrong approach here, just a number of best practices. People are pivoting from a sales oriented approach to a more service oriented approach about how they show up for their customers during this time.
- The ones who are most successful are taking this perspective that it’s still business as usual with some slight adjustments. Instead of meeting face to face at shows, we’re meeting virtually now. So instead of showing up at people’s home, what we’re finding right now are creating ways to meet customer’s needs.
- Calls, calls, calls. Another thing that people are doing the best right now are working the phones. People are home now more than ever. They’re cooking now more than ever. It’s created an environment that Cutco’s services are being used now more than ever.
Q: What other ideas do you feel are emerging to get results in the current situation?
- The other day I was so inspired about how Curtis Jaques has adapted very quickly and pivoted from “I can’t go to shows and I can’t go to people’s homes. So instead, I’m going to have people sanitize their knives and drop them off to me and then I’m going to sharpen them for them.”
- NOTE: Curtis has developed a “virtual service call” program which many reps are using to have great success right now.
- Messaging is very important right now, regardless of the kind of business you run, to just reach out and see how you can be of service to your customers. Get more information about your customers, make sure the address is correct, the phone number and email are correct.
Q: Is there anyone else in the Cutco sphere that you want to spotlight in terms of what they’re doing?
- Chelsea Rodriguez who has sold almost $45,000 in the past three weeks in knives.
- Josh Rasizer who was doing shows every weekend and has now adapted to running virtual service appointments for his clients. Helping them sharpen their knives virtually.
- Deanna Scortino who has found multiple different ways to innovate and still be of service to her clients.
Q: How are you and Amiee responding to these times?
- I’m blessed to be married to one of the best business professionals I’ve had the opportunity of meeting. She asked me, “how can we show up for our employees, our clients, and our community the best way possible right now?”
- As a company, no matter what we are not laying off any of our employees. Whatever it takes we are going to find a way to keep our employees on and continue to make our payroll in order to support them. Without them we aren’t who we are.
Q: Do you have any other thoughts for sales people who are outside of Cutco?
- I’ve been making sure to be mindful of how I’m investing my time right now.
- Make a list of things to do that haven’t been getting done. Now more than ever we’ve got time to get those things done. Make a list both personally and professionally.
- Connect with the family, call your parents, your brothers and sisters. Just call people you care and see how they’re doing. Remind them that you’re okay and that they’re okay too.
- Powerful reminder to focus on the things that are within our control and focusing on them on a daily basis.
- Concept of solution orientation and thinking, how might we solve this problem? How might we still hit our goals?
- Crowd-sourcing wisdom. Surrounding ourselves with those who are solution oriented themselves and are attempting to move forward and implementing the ideas that we are hearing.
- I got a text today from Mike Ambrosino, a great Cutco alumni saying, “I think that one thing I’m really grateful for in this moment from Cutco is the ability to unorthodoxly problem solve and come up with creative solutions. It is the mentally of our great Cutco sales management team to problem solve and find solutions and always have that outlook of how can we still do what we want to do.”
Show Notes for this episode provided by Darien Romero.
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