WHY IT WORKS
A Note from his Daughter
-yes, the one who earned money to shop in Europe.
-yes, the one who talks a lot, just like her Dad
"I remember riding to school with Dad listening to endless tapes on how to be a good salesman, how to motivate people, and how to be successful--then talking about it again every night at dinner. Dad always asked me and my sister, 'What do you think about what the tape said today?' Amanda often noticed the narrators sounded 'sneaky' and I often mentioned they were kind of hazy on the 'how you're actually supposed to do this stuff' parts. Every time Dad would finish writing a chapter of his book, he'd ask me to read it. I was ten. I was like, 'Whyyyyyyyy? Do I have tooooo???' He made sure I could understand everything he wrote, and explain it back to him. I thought he was just making me learn more stuff and torturing me. I realized, many years later, that is why his books are so good. Of course he knew the concepts worked because he'd sold, managed, and owned using them them and made millions of dollars that way. But how could he make it easy for others to do the same thing? By making sure even a ten year old could understand and use these methods. If a ten year old can 'get it,' then anyone can.
Incidentally, before I was in the field of education (which I was inspired to enter because of my Dad's Advanced Educational Sciences in The Selling Bible), I did join a retail electronics store sales force for a while...just to see if Dad's stuff really worked. By my third month there, I was still relegated to the 'personal electronics' department (you know, small margin items), and yet I was second in the entire chain in overall monthly sales. So, it did 'work for me.' And that's what's so cool about Dad's books and tapes...they'll work for anybody.
I guess I wanted to write something personal, so you would know that these books don't just teach you to make money, they teach you how to be proud of yourself for making money...Because you get to be financially gaining while helping others make buying decisions which cause them to leave happy, and stay happy. It makes the business of selling a business that makes a difference in people's lives. It feels good to sell the way my Dad teaches.
You know what I didn't like about Dad's method? I used to hate asking for the sale--I always felt like a pushy jerk--until I figured out that I ask for the sale all the time with my students. I discover what they need in order to learn, but they won't start doing it unless I show them the benefits, then I just ask them to try it! I saw that asking for the sale (when you really believe in your product or service) just means giving people a green light. It means, 'Hey, this is perfect for you. Here's why. Now, buy it so we can start enjoying it!' I actually don't even realize I'm doing it now, because I'm so passionate to get my customers started reaping the benefits of what I offer!
What gets me every time I reread Dad's books (yes, I still do, often), is that they actually still apply?! It amazes me how a book written in the 80's or 90's could be so relevant, and well, could still work! How did he do that? That's his secret--give someone tools that aren't trendy, that aren't fancy, that aren't manipulative...that are just real. You know, honestly, the only thing I wonder about still being relevant is writing customer accounting cards on paper. I'm pondering an 'app for that' because we all have our phones with us constantly, so it sure would be easy to tell Siri all that info or type it into my phone instead of writing it down. I've tested a few ideas. Right now, making a separate group in my 'contacts' app for my customers works pretty well. My guinea pigs trying this out just put in all the info to call back, text, and email customers, and there's a 'notes' section where we write things like, 'likes yellow sunflowers' or 'has purple carpet.' They've found if they text them right away (Mrs. Jones, it was so great to meet you today. I loved your style and look forward to seeing pictures of that yellow vase in your home! Thank you for coming in, it really made my day.), it's easy to remember who is who, and accomplish a follow up step! In my education business, I use the method to catalog parents who call, text, or email for one of my services--and people I meet at restaurants, coffee shops, and any other outing since EVERYONE is a prospective customer! I put things like 'Tucker's sister' or 'lady from the Deli with granddaughter who can't read' or 'trouble in Math section of ACT.' I usually text them within a couple of days just to touch base and remind them of our conversation (i.e. the benefits I offer). I have sold every single education customer contact except two in the last ten years. And in Dad's defense, on those two, my countenance was WAY off that day (yes, we have a texting countenance too, lol). I think had I been more welcoming, they'd have let me work with them as well. I hope you can make the leap to iPhone C.A.C's and don't give up because the paper is too hard to manage...meanwhile, I'll work on that app!
Now in my 40's, and having lost my Dad in 2014, his writings have become even more precious to me, more than just my tools--they are my way of life. I use his wisdom every day in my education business. I am considering a second re-release after our upcoming one, Dad's books with new titles, "Doing Any Job Ever (including school), and Succeeding-Books 1, 2, & 3."--Not even kidding. It amazes me how many times a week I show my students the chapter on Countenance when they're applying to colleges, the chapter on the Principle of Reflection when they're taking the ACT, and the chapter on Self-Motivation for my homeschoolers. Much less how many of their parents I insist read the books (because the Business of Raising a Teenager is the most challenging of all). I am always doing career coaching and despite all my research and reading on that, I always come back to Selling Retail and The Selling Bible. Every single time. Dad's research on Education was the foundation for my strengths-based learning assessments. I am endlessly offering up invaluable Dad quotes to baristas, hairdressers, home health care workers, writers, and stay at home moms, who thank me eternally. The truth is, his stuff is universal. It applies to all of us, in a million ways. Even though he writes of satisfied retail customers, his books actually create satisfied life customers.
In my lifetime, I only hope I help a fraction of the people my dad helped by writing these books. I miss him more than you can imagine, but I sure am lucky to still have his wisdom in the form of his books, in his words, and in allllll of his stories.
Hey, by the way, have you read these books? You should buy them now and read them as soon as they come in the mail. I 'guarantee' you, you'll be glad you did.
-CC Lawhon, M.Ed., January 2017 (more from me on the Blog)
Because he lived it for 60 years...
Just do a quick search on FaceBook for John F. Lawhon and you will see thousands of people who still remember working for, meeting, or reading a book by Lawhon for the first time. You'll even see pieces of furniture on eBay with a description like 'From John F. Lawhon's.' He is an icon. Lawhon's work is not just talk. In it, he simplifies the system he used to increase the profits for every company where he worked, managed, owned, and consulted, to over 30% in just the first few months...as long as the salespeople and managers did what he told them to do.
After he "retired" from the retail furniture industry, it bothered him a lot that salespeople were frustrated, even the best selling only 5-15% or so of their customers; and they were jaded. He had loved selling. He wanted everyone who did it to be as proud as he was of his career. So, Mr. Lawhon set out to give everyone a plan to sell--successfully, and in a way they could be proud of. Lawhon wanted a salesperson at any company to view his job as his own business--instead of as a dead end working for someone else. He wanted to make it possible for anyone to succeed in sales, maintain his or her integrity, and take pride in their job--and so that is what he did.