What do you want from your life? In your career? Do you want to be the best you can be, to achieve the most you can, to have an exceptional life and a fulfilling career? Paul Cummings wants you to. That’s why he’s one of the most popular and captivating speakers the AADA National Dealer Convention has ever had.
Most people have great dreams and aspirations, but most never realise those dreams or even believe they will. Paul Cummings is different. He not only talks the talk, he walks the walk. He believes in setting the dial to 10 every day, and he does.
Passion doesn’t just ooze from his pores, it leaps from his being. His presentation at the 2016 AADA National Dealer Convention in Melbourne in September was compelling, inspiring.
Cummings challenges his audience. He asks, do you have the same passion for your business and customers as you do for your sports team?
“We will go to those matches and scream until we have no voice left. My question is do you have that same intensity for your own business?” he asked a packed Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre at the beginning of his Super Tuesday presentation.
“Do you scream like that for your customers? Do you put that same level of passion and energy into celebrating your (work) team that you’ve invested your life in, your capital in and your energy in? Because in that one moment, when you figure that out, when you understand that your team – that group you go to work with every day – those are the people you need to be most passionate about.”
That passion must also be extended to customers, the people “who actually do write your cheques, who actually do give you your opportunity, who actually choose you over someone else, have made a congruent, committed decision to buy from you. They deserve that same type of energy too. They deserve that same type of passion too. They deserve an organisation that is committed at a higher level.”
A Level 10 life
Cummings preaches that we are all capable of extraordinary lives, if only we are prepared to ‘turn our dials up to 10’. Yes, skills and knowledge are important, but attitude is King.
“Every day when you come to work, where is your energy dial set? Where is your enthusiasm dial set?” he asked the audience.
“Because enthusiasm sells, if you don’t know it, and enthusiasm is not a ‘fake-it-till-you-make-it’ business. Enthusiasm is an inside game with an outside reflection that speaks to your customer before you do. And is it fair of you to expect the customer to be more enthusiastic about buying from you than you are about presenting to them? The answer to that question is absolutely not. People love to do with you what you love to do.
“Don’t deny yourself the capacity you have to do great things by setting your dial at less than 10. People are never going to do for your dealership goal what they’ll do for their own. It’s easier to inspire people to chase their own dream than it is yours. If you become a builder and developer, helping your people reach their most important goals and dreams, your turnover’s going to go down, your retention’s going to go up, your customer experience is going to get better, and your profit’s going to soar. ”
Mindset. Hustle. Determination. Execution.
Paul Cummings practices what he preaches. High-energy, full commitment, always seeking to improve. “Your mindset is the most important thing you bring to work with you every day.
It is your attitude, it is your optimism. It is all of the things that control outlook and outcome. If you get it right, then you win. The Level 10 experience is a way of reflecting your mindset. It’s a way of saying to the customer, ‘this matters; you matter’, it’s a way of saying, ‘this is going to be a great experience’.
“Whose attitude matters? Everybody who works with you. All the people. Each one of you. A service writer in a great mood can retain a customer. A receptionist in a bad mood can run a customer off. A great salesperson helps another salesperson sell a car when they treat a customer the proper way. We’re all responsible for attitude in our business. We’re all responsible.”
Five components for a Level 10 life:
Developing the Level 10 mindset demands that an individual must be willing to:
- Seek the best information only
- Role model the winners
- Strengthen their current beliefs
- Strengthen their vision and goals
- Find and use their voice
- Protect their mindset every day
The Level 10 attributes:
Cummings embraces technology and insists Dealers must too, even going to the point of calling an audience member on-stage for an impromptu Facebook Live chat.
Your smartphone is “a 4k recording studio and distribution system, in your hands. How many of y’all do live feeds of customer testimonial on Facebook, from your dealership? It’s free. We just did one; went all over the world. Why aren’t you doing it? Why aren’t you recording every customer testimonial and placing it on your corporate Facebook page in real time? It’s free. Science. This is what someone handed you. This is a 4k, full-blown recording studio. This is a content distribution system.
“You need to get into the science of your business. Embrace it. If you don’t know how to use Snapchat, learn. Did you know Snapchat today has more unique business than Facebook? Instagram is one of the greatest ways to develop a social audience for your business. Why aren’t you using it?”
Paul Cummings’ Five Rules to put you ahead of 90 per cent of your competitors:
- Show up on time
- Mentally prepared to do the work required to be successful
- With a well-defined action plan detailed in scope, detailed by activity. “If you go to work without a plan, you’re costing yourself 20 per cent of your income”
- That you are willing to hustle to execute. “Stay in motion, massive energy, taking action. Hustle is not a bad word, it’s a level of energy put into an endeavour. That’s what hustling is when you’re an athlete, that’s what it is when you’re a business owner. It’s about not sleeping when your competitor does, it’s about not lapsing mentally when they do, it is about never ever giving a customer anything less than your best, because it might be the four hundredth time you’ve done it this year but it’s the first time they’ve done it. And they deserve nothing less than your best every time they have the opportunity to deal with you”
- With a winning attitude.
Practise, drill and rehearse. “Developing the mindset that I have to have repeating habit patterns that support me on my journey. Because your habits are your best friend or your worst enemy. They go with you everywhere you go, and they can serve you or they slay you.
“Everything that happens in your business is either a knowledge issue, an attitude issue, a skill issue or a habit issue. People who develop immense knowledge, possess a winning attitude, are highly skilled and have great habits, happen to win. They run, operate, own businesses, employ people and create amazing amounts of profit when they learn how to do those things consistently.
“A career path stops when awareness closes down. Awareness is your willingness to be honest with yourself about who you are, where you are, what you need to improve and how you’re going to get that done. And, more importantly, why is it important to you and others?”
The final lesson: sales is an art and a science. To master it, you have to master both. Unless it’s a used car, customers can get the same product elsewhere. What you can offer that is unique is the experience.
“You must build value in the mind of the customer that exceeds their expectations and the asked-for investment,” he said.
“You only do that with experience, because the metal is the metal.”
Paul Cummings sure gives one hell of an experience.