Former stand-up comedian turned author, Ian Coburn, joins Michael to share why soft-selling is crucial to winning stronger relationships and more sales. In episode 159, you’ll learn the right questions to ask during the sales process that not only advance the sale but trigger voluntary sharing!

Noteworthy Topics from this Episode:

04:03 – Hear what people were talking about, just listen. Being a good listener can make all the difference in your ability to earn an income. You have two ears and one mouth – use them proportionately.
06:14 – Social media: everybody has so much to say that we forget to actually listen.
10:13 – Learn how to work with people and communicate and have relationships and negotiate. You can’t always have what you want and you need to learn how to deal with that.
13:06 – Training is even more important today for those people coming up through the ranks.
14:46 – We are always put into scenarios where we have to negotiate compromise conflict and resolution.
15:08 – Sales professionals: Figuring out how to be scientists, always be curious and discover things on your own.
17:32 – What can we do to inject a crucial type of education before they enter the workforce? What are some things that people should be focused on when preparing to enter the workforce?
19:23 – We need to want for our customers to be successful. We’ve got to take that ownership and we’ve got to train them.
21:23 – Give training to your stuff and offer an exceptional experience that others cannot keep up with. Have a soft skill set training program.
22:17 – You’re responsible for your own success and the success of your customer.
22:50 – Training is not a one and done.
25:31 – Have some kind of followup after the training like a worksheet to refresh the training and to make sure training material is implemented.
27:09 – Talking with customers: document like a doctor to better retain information.
28:40 – What can a leader do to implement training inside their organization.
37:54 – Soft skills – the reason for Amazon success: making suggestive sales.
39:40 – Listen to your customers and respond. Ask the right questions and watch how freely people tell you everything about themselves.
42:20 – Staple questions: figure out which questions you need to ask.
45:59 – The why’s that motivate us the most tend to be our personal why’s.


Ian adds that as much training is important, implementing what you learn in that training is crucial. Develop procedures where training is documented and you do the followup on the implementation of the material and techniques covered in the training. Training should never be considered as a one and done event. It is an ongoing process of development of skills and theory must always be followed with practice.


Ian says the key in any business is listening to your customers. You will be surprised how much they will tell you about themselves and their needs if you just ask and listen. Huge opportunities can be discovered in the process, possibly even the ones you have never considered.

Resources From This Episode:

Connect with The Dealer Playbook: