Steve Nudelberg is an Author, Expert Sales Trainer, Biz Dev Expert, Keynote Speaker, and Serial Entrepreneur.
His core philosophy is to ignite individuals and teams by enhancing their awareness about small, yet, powerful changes they can make to instantly sharpen individual performance.
Steve’s specialty within organizations centers on creating daily sales processes, sales acceleration and development, Social Selling, The Art of Building Relationships, Storytelling to make conversations engaging, and Pipeline Development.
Umar Hameed 0:06
Are you ready to become awesomer? Hello everyone, this is Umar Hameed, your host and welcome to the No Limit Selling Podcast, where industry leaders share their tips, strategies and advice on how to make you better, stronger, faster. Get ready for another episode.
Umar Hameed 0:35
Hello everyone, today I truly have the privilege of having Steve Nudelberg here with me today. This will be a great conversation. Steve is dynamic. He’s a master of his craft. Steve, welcome to the program.
Steve Nudelberg 0:47
Thank you so much, you know, the power of the world, the social media world that we’re living in you and I didn’t know each other a month ago. But through the power of social media, we now know each other,
Umar Hameed 0:59
Week ago. Literally spend less than a week,
Steve Nudelberg 1:01
Less than a week, okay.
Umar Hameed 1:02
But it feels like we’ve known each other for a really long time, right?
Steve Nudelberg 1:05
Well, you never know what that first conversation will sound like or look like ours was matching wits, like a tennis match, and the…
Umar Hameed 1:15
Steve Nudelberg 1:15
…you know, we have mutual respect for each other and I think there’ll be some good things that happen.
Umar Hameed 1:20
Brilliant! And before we start recording, I was commenting on your family wall behind you. And there’s these picture printouts stuck over the other, more permanent pictures, and you told me that you update your photo wall to inspire you. Tell me why that’s important to you to keep that family wall updated.
Steve Nudelberg 1:38
So I think people discount the power of environments where you work matters. I’m a detail guy in the process. And so when we work from home, I want to make sure everything around me supports my mental breathing if you will. And in this particular case, my family continues to grow, we’ve had tremendous, you know, relationship, things happen over the last 10 months. It’s been a real positive for us and so I’m going to reflect that on the wall and as a reminder of why I do what I do.
Umar Hameed 2:18
So you may not know this, Steve, but you can go without food, a human being for a couple of weeks before we die, and you can go without water for days before we die. But you cannot go without breathing for more than 10 minutes. And let’s say like an Olympian or something. And the reason I share that silly little thing with you is you said your environment lets you mentally breathe, that’s how critical it is that we do not realize that our surroundings what we surround ourselves with, literally allow our mindset to blossom or to walk away.
Steve Nudelberg 2:50
You know, it’s interesting being in the space that I’m in now I’m a career entrepreneur, I’ve spent 40 plus years with a couple of really nice wins, and a lot of failures…
Umar Hameed 3:02
Steve Nudelberg 3:02
…to lose from, to a couple of big failures to really just continue to learn. But you know, I think people are always looking for a silver bullet, something that’s going to change their life. It’s the details, you know, it’s so when you pay attention to environment, I, you know, when we were traveling and going into people’s offices, a cluttered office was really a cluttered mind, you know, you, yourself, the the chance, I one of the rules in the book that I wrote Confessions of a serial salesman, rule number two is get up and make your bed and people say, “Why?” And I go, you know, besides the fact that it shows you that if you do the small things, you can move on to the big things, it’s just less clutter, I want to get dressed with my bed mate.
Umar Hameed 3:49
So I’m not sure which band it was, it was like one of these super mega bands. And one of the things that you know, superstars want, we want M&M’s in our green room, and they can’t be any brown M&M’s in that bowl. And you probably know the story and it was very much that if they were brown M&M’s in the bowl, it just gave them an indication that they probably haven’t set up the stage properly because if you don’t do the small things right, it’s a clue that you’re doing the big things not right.
Steve Nudelberg 4:18
I can validate that story because we had a client, then there’s a story for everything, which is the best part…
Umar Hameed 4:26
Steve Nudelberg 4:26
…I had a client that we did tremendous work with who was going to have his 50th birthday, and he sent him a huge Three Dog Night fan. Can you can you guys produce a Three Dog Night concert, and as great salespeople? Sure!
Umar Hameed 4:40
Steve Nudelberg 4:41
Yeah of course we can do I got the guard like, we have no idea. We wound up producing a concert in the gentleman’s backyard, which obviously could hold the audience that he had. And one of the requirements was they wanted all yellow M&M’s. And I was like…
Umar Hameed 5:00
Ah! Love it!
Steve Nudelberg 5:00
…why would somebody want that? And we were fortunate enough to learn that they pay attention to the details, which I loved. I was like, you know, so in your life, in your sales, in no matter what you do, if you don’t pay attention to the details, there’s no shot that you’re going to get to the big stuff.
Umar Hameed 5:19
Absolutely! So before we get into the subject we’re talking about, I’ll just share a story to I think this is what we might be doing today, is one of the best events that I went to back when, you know, the tech industry was like, uh, pouring money to make things happen. I went to this event at Camp Pendleton. And so we got bused into Camp Pendleton on the beach. And when they’re like, Okay, what are we doing here for this event, and all of a sudden, you start hearing Wagner and these marine assault vehicles, amphibious vehicles come out of the sea and come on to the beach, and we got a chance to kind of take a look at those, they had a great barbecue and that’s an entertainment, they had Hollow Notes for, like maybe 500 people being entertained by Hollow Notes, so that was like the best event ever. And so let’s get into mindset. So sales is probably the best profession in the world, that you can be highly educated or you can be just somebody that’s not gone to high school and still be a rock star at it, because it’s all about mindset. How do you mastered the techniques? And how do you connect with people is more important than how smart you are?
Steve Nudelberg 6:18
Well, to start out with, you have to understand the rules of the game. Yes, the game for sales is that you’re going to deal with a lot of rejection. I was with my friend, Dana Cavalea, who used to be the strength coach for the Yankees. I was with him this morning and we talked about it’s about percentages that you’re out of every 10 at bats, Derek Jeter is going to fail seven out of those 10 times. Understanding that he did not focus on the seven, he focused on the three wins, and celebrated those and did that repeatedly, is his absolute example of mindset, you have a choice, that you can have negative thoughts or positive thoughts. And most people are not good at building the defenses they need to ward off all the negative stuff that they’re dealing with.
Umar Hameed 7:11
So what’s kind of interesting is what you said is almost like a cliche. And the reason cliches are cliches because they’re frickin true.
Steve Nudelberg 7:17
Umar Hameed 7:17
It’s nice, this cliche as this is, oh, yeah, Steve, that makes sense. But they can’t see it in their own lives, that they get three NO’s and they give up. They don’t go for the 10. And how do we, how do you get people to say, “Hey, you need 100 at bats friggin even figure out what the percentages are minimum?” How do you get people to keep on trying and keep on learning so they get better?
Steve Nudelberg 7:42
So I’m a big fan of Daily Habits, so I think people get lost in the, “I’m never gonna do this,” or they just get lost in. You know, I think the last time I checked, the human mind has 60,000 negative thoughts that, you know, come at you all day, all day long. So people actually work talk worse to themselves than they would ever allow anybody on the outside. So controlling that negative thought pattern is done by daily activities, being fairly disciplined and consistent about the behavior, not the outcome. And I think that’s a big shift in certainly the work I do with CEOs and sales leaders and entrepreneurs, is we instill the right behaviors. If you think about going to the gym, if you don’t have the right behaviors, there’s no way you’re gonna have a six pack, you know, abs, it’s just, it’s just not gonna happen. So people go, “Well, you know, it didn’t work for me,” Well, you know what smoking a cigarette and eat a doughnut is not going to work. If the goal is that it’s really daily looking at what..
Umar Hameed 8:48
Yeah, absolutely. And that’s why people need people like you and I is because I can go to the gym every single frickin’ day and do my diligent workout for one hour. And after a year, I would look better, but I would look pathetic compared to if I had a trainer that showed me actually how to do the activity properly because you can do the bench presses but if you don’t have the right form, you’re not taking advantage of what you’re doing, so not only doing the activity, but doing it right.
Steve Nudelberg 9:18
So you bring up an amazing point because the barrier to entry to be a coach is very low. You know, I’ve been really miserable in my whole career, but I’m gonna, I’m gonna go teach other people how to do that like “Wow!” So I was fascinated with the coaching and training world. And the reality is what I’ve learned is that, you know, I share my experience and the greatest of the greatest, all had people who look at their downside, things they do wrong, things that they want to get better at. LeBron is, you know, clearly one of the best basketball players ever get he has somebody who’s looking out for him on the court off the court food, you know. So when you align with someone who and there’s all different kinds of coaches, but elite coaches, ask questions and hold people accountable, and you build a culture of accountability, right? there’s no reason why you can’t be successful and go further than your own mindset can allow you to do that. So I like pushing the boundaries, I have a strength coach that I work out with every morning, who has taken me to places I couldn’t get on my own because he holds me accountable holds account.. holds me accountable. When I go to sleep, what I eat, all part of the process that you know, are part of the behaviors that are getting me the outcome I want.
Umar Hameed 10:51
Dear listeners and viewers, you may not know this, but Steve is a freak and I’ll tell you why. He’s a freak that he wakes up 3:30 every morning and I’d asked him this question. He said, “Everyone asked the same question.” What time do you go to bed? And the correct answer would have been you go at six o’clock, or whatever that time is but Steve said, “No, I go to bed when I’m tired.” And that’s organic and that’s your body telling you what you want. So can you speak to the connection between mindset? And also listening to your body? how those two things tie together?
Steve Nudelberg 11:22
Sure. Oh, yeah, absolutely. So the mental and the physical are really tied together. If you eat wrong, you are putting sand in the tank of a Ferrari, it’s just…
Umar Hameed 11:33
Steve Nudelberg 11:33
…not gonna work. So the correlation between what you ingest, and we do this with all of our clients, diet is much more than the food you intake. It’s the things you watch, it’s the people you hang out with. All of that affects the output of what you want to do. So early on, I realized that the most successful people I was around, get up early and early is nebulous. But for me, I found a spot that allows me freedom to do the things I want to do before everybody else is doing that. So there is a there is a charm to being first. And I…
Umar Hameed 11:33
Steve Nudelberg 12:10
control that, I control the controllables. What can I control when I get up. And then I have a set list of activities very much like when people go to the gym, and they do sit ups and push ups and whatever, what I read what I send out, reading, writing, listening, I love music and the certain music that changes my emotional state, that allows me to be by eight o’clock when I do my daily huddle, which I do you know, for 1000s of people now, I am in prime working order. And if you listen to people like Michael Jordan, he talked about being in the zone, that’s mental conditioning, to show up and be in the zone. But some people allow themselves. I’m not feeling it today. I’m just going to kind of get through today or mail it in. And the only people that they’re hurting are themselves because I believe all of the magic happens when you show up as a 10. So that’s controllable. You can do that. If you eat wrong, and you eat late, and you drink and you smoke and you do all of these things, it will hamper performance. Simple.
Umar Hameed 13:25
Absolutely. A friend of mine was telling me that he noticed that his dad, you know, has some really nice guitars and a particularly very nice guitar. And he’s not been using it for a while. And he dabbles and he goes, “Dad, can I have that guitar?” expecting his dad to say, “Sure son, here you go.” And our hero asked his dad and you know, he’s an adult. So he’s asking his dad and his dad says, “Not yet. What I want you to do is go to the guitar store, get a new set of strings, the most expensive set of strings you can find, put them on your guitar, practice every day for 90 days and then you can have my guitar.” And he said, “You know, I did what my dad said.” And because his dad told him your guitar is going to sound better after 90 days of playing it. And he goes, “Okay, that doesn’t make any sense.” And then sure enough, his guitar sounded better. And then he realized, “Oh my God! the guitar isn’t sounding better I am because I’m practicing every single day.” And his dad gave him the guitar as a reward but what he really gave him was something to do, control stuff and reach his next level of performance which I thought was totally brilliant. What a dad thing to do.
Steve Nudelberg 14:25
So if you unpack that story, which is great, there’s a couple of key takeaways for me. Number one is the time, 90 days, there’s a magic thing in 90 days about getting better. Take on activities that if you practice every 90 days, so that number is really really…
Umar Hameed 14:44
Steve Nudelberg 14:44
…important to me, plus, he made his son put skin in the game, go buy the most expensive thing, and you have to do something in order to get something because we live in a world of I want it now. “Here’s my credit card.” I’ll take it no skin in the game. So, you know, I think if you’re willing to invest in yourself, and investing in yourself is time, money, you know, everything that it has to do, you will get the results. And so I love hearing stories like that, because that’s where real success is, it’s really not sexy, it’s really not, you know, everybody wants a silver bullet overnight, you know, I’m 61 years old, I’m an overnight success. Now, I’ve been doing this my whole life, and I’ve had ups and downs and you know…
Umar Hameed 15:32
Every single overnight success that there’s ever been will tell you, “I am an overnight success.” After the 15 years of dive bars and perfecting the craft, we became overnight successes. And it’s…it’s more to do with a getting your expertise up. And then finally, you get to this level, because you talked about mindset. And Jordan, there’s this quote from Einstein that, “I love simplicity on the other side of complexity,” I can be simple and be like a suck, then you figure out the complex to get to the other side, and you make it look easy. And you get to that place of thinking without thinking the state of flow and that’s a magical place to be. And you can only get that from dedication, hard work and tenacity.
Steve Nudelberg 16:13
You know, so clearly, there’s no substitute, you know, this is what it takes to do well. So, you know, when I look at all of the greatness that has preceded me, you know, success leaves clues, so, you know, my whole process, and what we work with clients all over the world on basically has four steps. And people go, “That’s it.” I go, “Yeah,” not some buzzword theory, bs, four steps done every single day, that you know, so the magic comes in the discipline and the consistency, not in some newfangled, you know, we’re gonna run up and down and do you know, this is pretty simple stuff. And if you master the basics, in whatever you do, that opens the door to so much. Hence, mastering your calendar is one of the best things you can do for yourself. And when we do that with people, it creates freedom, freedom creates massive income, it’s not the other way around so…
Umar Hameed 17:17
So hold on just for a second that thought. What a lot of people think is, you know, if I lock myself down on my calendar, if I get a process, it’s gonna take creativity away, it’s gonna take the magic way, I’m not gonna get my best work. And that turns out to be bullshit.
Steve Nudelberg 17:31
Umar Hameed 17:31
The people that are so what do you think we get this in society that you know, what you just suggested? Master the calendar is the fundamental underpinning of all the greats that have ever been, have done that? Why do we have this disconnect from what we learn in society, in our culture, that that’s not the case.
Steve Nudelberg 17:49
So it’s been drilled into us that in order to get better, you have to do more. And so that’s a fallacy, because in order to get better, you have to do less, you have to do less but…
Umar Hameed 18:00
Very well said, Yup!
Steve Nudelberg 18:01
…and so and so people can’t get their arms around. I need to I need to do 100 of these, you know, and crazy that drives themselves crazy. When Warren Buffett will tell you, the number one skill set you need to learn is the power of NO, no, I’m not going to do that, I’m not going to chase that. I’m going to stick to my plan boring, and simple as it is it is. And so the key is, you know, mastering what the activities are, and then doing them over not adding new and everybody’s got a new fad. And, you know, this happens on the golf course all the time. Someone’s always saying, well, you shouldn’t do that you should turn the club upside down and do that, you know…
Umar Hameed 18:43
Steve Nudelberg 18:43
…everybody’s got a solution until you find your own. And so for me, my career was always based on, “Wow, that’s the most successful guy in the room. Let me take a look at his process and see what I can pull, and pull and pull.” And over the years, what I did was build 27 rules of engagement, that very much similar to the you know, when you go, Navy SEALs have rules of engagement, this is how we go to do what we do. My book “Confessions of a Serial Salesman” is 27 rules and I know for a fact that if I’m not performing well, I can go back to the rules and say…
Umar Hameed 19:28
29 or whatever yeah!
Steve Nudelberg 19:30
Umar Hameed 19:30
Steve Nudelberg 19:31
You know, I’m not doing this, I’m not doing that, and just start doing that again, going okay, I got away from it. Let me go back to the process, and the process always delivered.
Umar Hameed 19:41
So what’s interesting Steve is this, is that the most powerful thing we can do is do something because doing something that allows us to disconnect from mindset a little bit and go execute and the reality is this. If you’re doing the right things, you get the right mindset, they’re interlinked. And when you gave That golf example, sometimes we’re not getting the results we want instead of doing what we need to do, we go, “Oh, I gotta try this new thing.” And it distract us… distracts us from what we need to be doing with this newfangled thing. And after three months is like, “Oh, that’s not working anyway, it’s the thing wrong, not me.” And so. how are you feeding yourself? Are you doing the right things in the right way? Or are you doing other things that distract you? And that’s a question you can answer all the time and that’s why you need someone like Steve to go, “Dude, smack, you’re focusing on the wrong thing.
Steve Nudelberg 20:30
You know, the biggest challenge in coaching is buy in, someone has to be ready to let go and give it up for someone else to look and for them to take that advice. I mean, you know, back in the days when, you know, I owned the marketing agency, you know, we would go in and a month in, the client is telling us what they think is right. And I go, “Whoa, whoa, whoa, timeout. You hired us for our expertise, we should just leave the room, you know, well, you don’t need us. No, no, no, I don’t know, then why are you holding on, let go and let somebody who is a professional, help you get the results you want.” So the first step of great coaching is to be coachable.
Umar Hameed 20:30
Steve Nudelberg 20:35
If you want, if you allow yourself to be coached, and share in wisdom, I don’t ever tell a client you have to do this. And I don’t give opinions because opinions can be right or wrong. Give perspective. The reason why I can give you perspective is I’ve been successful, I’ve done this over and over, I’ve seen it, I’ve done it, I know what I’ve done wrong so I bring all that to the party. And then it’s a chemistry test, I’m not right for everybody. You know, you’re I spoke to a coach yesterday, who connected with me from Barcelona and her niche, her niche, which is the power of LinkedIn, her niche is energy, she unlocks energy blocks…
Umar Hameed 22:03
Steve Nudelberg 22:03
…and she explained it to me and I was like, that is a really cool thing because if you’re not bringing the energy, you’re gonna feel tired all the time, not gonna be able to perform at eye level. And it was such a, she was a successful entrepreneur who sort of unlocked all of this and she went through all the coaching, the training, you know, for IFC or whatever the governing body is, what she has real time stories that she can share with people. So I say to somebody, hey, listen, would you get in the car with somebody who’s never driven before?
Umar Hameed 22:35
Steve Nudelberg 22:35
No! So I want to see how you drive before I let you teach me how to drive. You know, it seems so ridiculous but people don’t check credentials, they don’t check stories they don’t, so the coaching game can be really good, it could be treacherous if you get with people. And I always say be careful who you listen to.
Umar Hameed 22:57
Absolutely. So it all revolves around mindset. And Steve, you know, what we need to do is we need to do another one of these because we’re coming up to the edge of our time. But we only got to one of the four things that Steve wants to share with us. So he’s coming back on the show, I’m going to get dig deeper into this. Steve, before we parted company today, what is one piece of advice you want to give the viewers and the listeners to this podcast that they could actually implement right away that would allow them to be awesomer.
Steve Nudelberg 23:26
Great. So we live in a world that we’re told to social distance today. I don’t think we’re socially distant, I think we’re physically distant.
Umar Hameed 23:36
Steve Nudelberg 23:36
So my take on on the world is we’ve never had more access to people. People don’t want to be sold, think of yourself, the minute somebody puts the pressure on you, you cover up and so instead of always be closing, always be connecting, connect with people at scale. When you make friends, friends open the door to new opportunities. So forget the word selling because the word selling is a derivative of a Scandinavian word, which means to serve. So serve people, share your knowledge, give away what you know, and watch how your business and your life explode. So that’s my tidbit to stay on the ball.
Umar Hameed 23:40
Steve, thanks so much for joining me today, it was a joy and I can’t even believe that 25 minutes have just zipped by so quickly. You are a master of your craft and thanks so much for being on the show.
Steve Nudelberg 24:31
And thanks for producing this show for you know, I appreciate the opportunity and love what you’re giving out to people. Great job!
Umar Hameed 24:37
Brilliant. So what we’re going to do, Steve right now is going to stop recording in a minute. I’m going to do a quick promo for our interview and here we go. Hey, everyone, I just got off an interview with Steve, Steve, thanks so much for being on the program, Yyou are freaking brilliant and what you shared on the podcast is every salesperson has to listen to how did you think the show went?
Steve Nudelberg 25:00
I’ve really enjoyed the opportunity, I’m in that stage of my career where I can send the elevator back down and the little kernels of knowledge that I get to share with people, when they put them into practice, they get better and if you get better 1% every day, watch how it changes your life.
Umar Hameed 25:19
Brilliant. He not only gave us the formula to do the 1% better, but he gave us the formula to do 10% better. Listen to the program, it’s amazing. Once again, Steve, thanks so much for being on the program.
Steve Nudelberg 25:30
Umar Hameed 25:36
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