Overcoming the fear of selling and increasing revenue takes time and effort. It’s essential to be persistent, learn from your experiences, and adapt your approach as needed. Eric Green, the managing partner in Green & Sklarz LLC, unravels his approach to overcoming the fear of selling and doubling the revenue to grow your business. On the other hand, Michelle Weinstein emphasizes the importance of getting rid of that fear because it will continue to get in the way. It is important to note that shifting our sales belief also changes how we look at sales. Dive into this conversation and overcome the fear of selling with Eric Green and Michelle Weinstein.
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Overcoming The Fear Of Selling: How To Gain Confidence In Selling With Eric Green
Our special guest is the managing partner in Green & Sklarz LLC, which is a boutique tax law firm with offices in Connecticut and New York. He is the Founder of Tax Rep LLC, which coaches accountants and attorneys on building their own IRS representation practice. He is also the host of the weekly The Tax Rep Network Podcast. He is also the author of the Accountant’s Guides to IRS Collection: Resolving Tax Debt and Resolving Payroll Tax Debt.
Before we welcome our special guest to the show, if you’re an accounting, tax, or bookkeeping firm owner, you may not realize it but you are leaving thousands of dollars on the table every single month. If you’re like most of the firm owners that I’ve met in the past, you’re undercharging for your work and you’re working way too many hours for too little money. You’re discounting your fees, you’re negotiating on price, or maybe you’re even caving in and doing some free work. When you do send out a quota proposal, maybe you hear crickets.
I have helped 162 firm owners double their revenue and win back their time freedom, and they have collectively added over $10 million in revenue in the past two years. All of them did this without working more hours, taking on a ton of clients, discounting their services, or doing anything they didn’t want to do.
If that’s you and you want to come and make a change in your firm and bring this to an end, schedule your free breakthrough session with me and my team over at TheAbundantCall.com. We’ll get on the phone for about 45 minutes and you can tell me everything about your firm, what you’re charging, and how much you’re working. We’ll come up with a step-by-step game plan on how you can double your firm revenue this year.
If you want our help to execute that plan, we can talk about how to make that happen soon. If not, that’s okay. Either way, the game plan we’ll come up with on this call will show you the path to earning far more in your firm while working far less. Head on over to TheAbundantCall.com. Now, let’s welcome Eric Green to the show. Welcome to the show, Eric.
Michelle, thank you for having me again.
This is a fun episode because this is a conversation about why you’re not afraid of selling, why I’m not afraid of selling, and the stuff behind it. Also, discussing the value of being real, confident, and all that fun stuff. Before we get started, for those of you that don’t know, Eric, can you share who you are quickly in 30 seconds or a minute?
I’m Eric Green. I am a practicing tax attorney. The focus of my practice is civil and criminal taxpayer representation. The firm is Green & Sklarz LLC, but I have an online community Tax Rep Network. It’s at TaxRepLLC.com. We help accountants and lawyers learn to represent taxpayers and resolve tax problems.
Eric, why are you not afraid of selling? What do you think it is for you? Before we dive into our juiciness for the day.
It’s funny because a lot of people think selling is, “I have to figure out a way to convince this person.” It’s never been like that. My sales approach is they have a tax problem and I can solve it. When I talked to them, I wanted to explain how I can help them and focus on solving the problem. It’s not the minutiae of how we’re going to do it or the form. Honestly, no one cares. It’s about, “Can you end the sleepless nights? Can you make the government go away?” It’s very much on getting them comfortable and explaining, “We know what we’re doing. We can help you.” That’s it. We rarely have someone not sign up with us. It’s about them being comfortable and confident. I don’t sit there and try to convince anybody to do anything.
Your confidence is what exudes and has someone enroll with you, and being detached from that outcome.
Let me lay the groundwork here for what I think the issue is. I get emailed all the time, and I got a few more last week, which is what prompted this. How do you sell? How do you get yourself to sell whatever? What I think is going on, or at least, what I’m feeling through these emails is people are under the impression that to sell, you have to sit there and try to convince somebody. You’ve got to overcome arguments. That has not been my experience. You are the queen of sales. By the way, I’ve never gotten the impression from you that that’s what you’re coaching people to do. Can you react to that?
One of the most important things to think about for everyone tuning in is that sales is just another word to communicate. Sales is about connection, communication, and building the know, like, and trust factor. When you love the service so much and you believe in something so much, that process of communicating your belief and passion for it so that you can help solve the problem of whoever is in front of you becomes the definition of a sale.Sales is just another word to communicate. Selling is about connection, communication, and building the trust factor. Click To Tweet
I’ll give you a personal example. One of my girlfriends was my physical therapist for the last year. The physical therapy place decided to close down, and she also has a niche in helping women who have incontinence. After a baby, they have the frequency. They need to urinate, etc. There are a lot of exercises and things that a human can do in order to not have that problem happen.
That problem is so big. I told her, “You could coach women on how to mitigate this, build those muscles, or build the area of strength so they don’t have to wear a diaper.” She was like, “How?” I said, “There’s a program. It will teach you all the elements.” I don’t have time in my life to teach you that. I specifically work with accounting tax and bookkeeping firm owners, teaching them how to sell and create, double their firm revenue, and do all that fun stuff. I can’t be a coach to everybody.
Instead of undercharging for her worth by trading her time for a dollar, meeting with patient to patient when she’s working too many hours for too little money, which is the same problem that a lot of firm owners I meet come across, I shared with her this program and she enrolled in it. She goes, “Michelle, you’re such a good salesperson.” I said, “Thank you. However, I believe so strongly about this program and I know how much it can help you. I know that you have a service that could help so many other women out there that are challenged with this issue and that you no longer have to trade your time for a dollar. You can have financial freedom and you can create a thriving business. You just need the steps.”
She enrolled. She just told me yesterday, “Michelle, you’ve changed my life. I’ve already had people I’m talking to about this problem.” It has been a couple of weeks and she already made a difference in some people’s lives, and she’s not just going from patient to patient. That’s what sales is. I always share too that for every firm owner out there that feels they’re working too many hours, or you keep taking on more clients and you think that’s sales, or you’re increasing your fees and you’re terrified that all your clients will leave you, that is a belief in yourself a problem. That’s a confidence issue.
Eric, what you have is this immense confidence when you help a person who’s in trouble with the IRS and you’re so confident that you can change their lives and get them out of their problem. For example, I met one of your friends, a firm owner. He’s helping one of my friends. It wasn’t that I sold her on having her hire him to get her out of the IRS mayhem. It’s that you guys are so good at what you do, and you’re leaving someone in a better place. When you leave someone in a better place than where they started, that is the sales process.
To be honest, Eric, you’re not convincing anybody because the convincing is if they’re going to work with you, they’re in a better off position than where they’re at right now. With my friend Natalie, the women aren’t peeing on themselves while walking down the street anymore. With you, they’re not paying endless interest, penalties, and racking up all this stuff. What about getting a lien on their house or their bank accounts being garnished at any moment? That is a worse-off position than you sharing how passionate you are about fixing their problem. That is where sales become successful.
You mentioned self-confidence, which is self-trust. It’s about understanding that you have the skills and that you can do this. When I “sell,” what I’m doing if it’s in the law firm, I’m explaining what I do and what the options are. If you’re passionate about it and you believe in it, that comes across. I don’t convince anybody of anything. As we keep getting busier and busier, I almost don’t even care if they come or not as a client.
Can I touch on that real quick?
I was going to say the fact that I believe in this, and I’ll let you speak in a little bit. When I go and give a talk, people don’t have to believe what I’m saying. I’m sure there are people that don’t believe in what I’m saying. They just have to believe that you believe what you’re saying. That comes through from understanding what it is that you’re selling whether it’s the coaching.People have to believe that you believe what you're saying. That comes through from understanding what you're selling. Click To Tweet
With Tax Rep, I don’t convince accountants and lawyers to join Tax Rep. I’m telling them about the opportunity and why I think this is interesting. I think it’s a no-brainer. Some people are interested, some aren’t but I’m not trying to convince people to do tax reps that aren’t interested. First of all, why would I? If they’re not interested, they’re not going to stay.
They’re never going to do the work. I don’t remember the exact words that you used, but something to the point where it doesn’t bother you if they don’t even become a client. One of the best power positions to be in with your clients is not only to not be desperate and not convince anybody but, Eric, you are completely detached from the outcome. It is what I call it.
When you’re so good at what you do, it’s almost like, “I’m here to help you. I’m here to make your life better. I’m here to get you out of tax craziness with the IRS. It’s up to you if you want to change your life. Here are all the ways in how I can save you money on interest, not have your wages garnished, not get liens, or whatever the outcome is for that prospect.
At the end of the day, we’re not attached to the outcome. I had this experience with a woman I was 100% certain. In sales, we are selling certainty and confidence. That’s what I was sharing with my friend Natalie as well. I am so certain and confident that you can build a coaching business helping these women. I don’t need to convince you because my certainty is so strong. On the flip side, the person might feel, “They can sell anything.”
It’s like, “No, I’m just that certain.” Certainty at a high level can come across as confident, and it might feel like, “I was just sold.” It’s your interpretation. It’s your belief in what that word means. A woman who didn’t believe all the testimonials I have and how clients are paying $1,000 a month for monthly bookkeeping and accounting work or CFO services. She only charges $595, and she just raised it from $495. For this discussion, I’ll call her Joan.
I said, “Joan, you’ve done well, but let’s be honest. You’re smart and intelligent, and you hustle, but you still are leaving thousands of dollars on the table. It’s no different than a Tax Rep client who’s leaving thousands of dollars on the table in interest and penalties in all those areas that if they don’t want to change, that’s not our problem. Eric, it’s not your problem.
If this woman, Joan, didn’t want to make a change in her firm, she can keep spinning her wheels and keep burning the candle at both ends. She can keep working a lot, making a lot of money, but sacrificing her work-life balance, and that’s not my problem. Another thing that you do well is that we take a stand for people. Ultimately, they get to choose what they want to do.
When the choice and the decision is made to not do anything or engage your firm, like Joan, it engages me or does nothing. She chose to wait, which in my mind is doing nothing because nothing is going to change. They’re only going to go back to the same behaviors because we are human beings. To make a shift or a change, it takes massive courage. A lot of times, the Tax Rep clients are in a lot of fear, and it gets in the way.
You are talking about two different things. On the law firm side, I don’t even think of it as selling. They come in and they need my help. We explain, “We’re charging $2,500 for an analysis,” and people pay it. It’s a no-brainer. On the Tax Rep membership side, it’s the same thing. If you’re coming and listening to us and you’re looking at our stuff, you have an interest in doing something beyond the bookkeeping, the tax returns, and all of that.
I don’t feel like I have to sell you on joining Tax Rep. This is what I hope the takeaway is for everyone tuning in to this. There are two issues. One is your own self-trust. You need to get comfortable with the fact that you know what you’re doing, what you do is valuable, and get over this fear of hearing no. The best salespeople will tell you that once they hear no, that’s when things get interesting. They want to hear the first no. I’m not sure I’ll buy into that, but the point is one is the self-trust aspect, but the second is you believe in what it is that you are selling. If it’s at the firm, what I’m selling is a good night’s sleep. It is peace of mind.
You are selling the outcome.
No one cares about the forms. I can make very pretty forms. They want to make the problem go away, “Make this end. I’m tired of fighting with my wife. I’m tired of waking up and my bank account is at $0 and I’ve bounced my checks.” It’s about that good night’s sleep and ending the pain. For those of you selling your representation services, your marketing message is, “I will end the pain.” No one cares about the forms. No one needs you to impress them with how brilliant you are.
In the end, “Are you the person? Are you the man or woman who can make this end? I’m tired of this. I want to make it go away.” On the tax rep side, “Do you want to build six figures and not have tax season anymore?” It’s a superpower. I say that because of the relief you can bring. I’ve never seen anyone do a 1040 and have people cry and send them gifts. It’s a commodity. When you resolve the problem and you can make tens of thousands or sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars go away, the IRS go away, or the State Department of Revenue go away, it’s like the rock has been lifted.
It’s a weight off their shoulders. They can sleep peacefully at night, as you said. They don’t have this glooming cloud over them that’s like a thunderstorm that can explode with hail, snow, or ice at any time. That’s all removed, and that gives someone a sense of peace, freedom, and tranquility. I think something for everyone tuning in is to realize and start thinking about what your sales beliefs are.
Some of you might think that selling is manipulative or sleazy. Some of you might think, “Michelle, I’m not a natural salesperson like you or like Eric.” You might think, “ Michelle, Eric, people buy based on price?” You might also think, “I’m lucky to have my clients. I can’t be that picky about who I work with. I need everybody. I need everyone to say yes.” You might say, “I hate selling in total. I don’t like it.” If you own your firm, let me bring you to shed some light. You signed up for a 24/7 sales career because you are the person in charge of bringing in the revenue, which is the top line item on your P&L.
I want to share some alternative beliefs for you to think about and contemplate. Maybe, Eric, you’ve got some more you could add to this. Selling is an honorable and moral imperative for your clients. If you don’t share with them how you can get rid of their pain, sleep at night, save hundreds of thousands of dollars, and have peace of mind, we’re doing them a disservice by not helping solve their problems or saying, “They’re never going to go for it,” or “They’re just going to tell me no.” Also, sales skills are something anyone can learn. I have taught hundreds of accounting and tax firm owners these skills. It is possible.
How much of it is sales skill versus a change of point of view?
It’s attitude, point of view, and skills. The attitude and point of view become a format of your belief system until we alter those beliefs about what your thoughts are about the word sales. All of us have had bad sales experiences. We’ve all been to the car dealership and were haggled. You went to the mall and there was a kiosk in the mall and you were annoyed because someone was trying to give you something you didn’t want.
All of us here are in a service-based business of something that somebody truly needs to change their life once and for all, or to get out of a big mess, especially for the tax rep side of things. People will pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to get a problem solved. Another truth about selling is that people will buy based on value and feelings. If they feel that you can provide freedom, not the form, like Eric said, or they feel that they can have peace and tranquility, not because you sat on the phone with the IRS for fifteen hours to negotiate whatever deal, they will pay a lot of money.
Another one for a lot of firm owners is scarcity. The scarcity mindset will sabotage us. Those are some of the first things that you want to start thinking about, reflecting on, and doing a mindset workaround. I’ve met a lot of firm owners who go, “Michelle, this is fun.” Eric, don’t you think the sales process is fun, meeting with clients, seeing how you can change their life, and getting them on a new trajectory? If they don’t make a change and engage your firm, they’re in the same boat. They’re not changing.
I don’t think of it as sales, so it’s fun. To me, learning to sell is getting comfortable with explaining what it is you do and the benefit that you can bring. That’s sales. I don’t have to try to convince you. On the rep side, they’re there because they have a need. For those of you who watch the movie The Wolf of Wall Street, he was this great salesman. He’s always like, “Try to sell me this pen.”
They’re always talking about the pen. Here’s the real lesson for the salespeople who do that. No one cares about the pen. It’s a pen. What do you look for in a pen? In other words, what do you need? I am going to fill the need and if I can fill the need, you’re going to buy. I don’t have to convince you to buy a pen because I want to sell you a pen. If you were an actual salesperson sitting there, they’d take the pen and be like, “What do you look for in a pen?”
It’s big. Do you like the shine? Do you like a little bit thicker hole? What you’re trying to get at is what they need. On the rep side, I pretty much already know what they need. It may be a lien issue. It may be the balance, a payment plan, or whatever, but they’re coming to me with a tax need. For me, it’s more explaining, “We can make this go away if you work with us.” It’s the simplest sales process in the world because all I’m telling them is what I can do. What I tell my Tax Rep members, and for those of you who are not members, is it’s not about trying to impress them with the technical minutiae. They don’t care. In fact, you’re turning them off.Selling is not about trying to impress people with the technical minutia. It's what you can offer to them. Click To Tweet
Not only is that a turnoff, but you lose them in the detail and the minutiae. It’s like the brain goes, “Is he speaking Japanese?” They then get all caught up in these details and it’s getting them away from how they feel. That’s what’s going on. That’s the least important thing. If you can eliminate and stop that part of your process when meeting with prospects, you’ll do well.
For those of you who are interested, Michelle, this is what she does. If you were hung up about this, go to Michelle, the Pitch Queen of the Abundant Accountant. Michelle coaches hundreds of people on just this. My message would be that if you have confidence in what you do, you just have to explain what you do and they will come and they will hire you. You should price yourself accordingly. Michelle can help you with making sure that you’re charging appropriately. What I have found is I have no problem asking for more money or whatever it’s worth because that’s what it’s worth. I feel very comfortable that it’s what it’s worth.
If they say no and walk out the door, okay. They usually don’t. Part of that is your passion. Zig Ziglar said, “Have a passion for what you’re selling.” At the time, I’m like, “The car or the pen, how do you get the passion?” I think what he meant is you have to believe in what you’re selling. They don’t have to believe what you’re saying. They have to believe that you believe what you’re saying. That is when they get comfortable with you.
With the car and the pen, how do they feel driving the car? How do they feel writing with that pen? When they execute their book or their poem of the day, how does the ink flow on there? It’s not about the actual physical thing, which in our world it’s the form or the actual documents and phone calls to the IRS. This is about the outcome, and that’s what I think is important to take away from today.
The other big thing that you’ve mentioned, Eric, is that when you can become detached from the outcome and you can do your best to guide and serve your client, it’s called having a servant mindset. When we can serve more and be committed to their dreams and their outcomes and you solving a problem, that speaks so much more than, “Here’s this pen,” or “Here’s this car.”
The car is the vehicle. It’s the feeling about how you’ve done that. As Eric said, I’ve helped over 172 firm owners now. I not only double their revenue but also win back their freedom, time, and confidence. My clients have generated over $10 million of additional revenue in their firms. I think I know what I’m talking about.
They’re helping people save money or resolve people’s problems. As Michelle said, they’re not buying the thing. They’re buying what the thing can do. For instance, I go out and buy a drill bit. I don’t want a drill bit, I want a hole. I’m not buying the drill bit because I like the drill bit. I don’t care about the drill bit. I care about the hole that it makes in the wall that I got to hang the thing. It’s that message of don’t get caught up in the minutiae. It’s what you can do for the person. When you understand that and do that, selling is a piece of cake. Michelle, thank you for doing this.
It’s TheAbundantCall.com if you want to explore more with me and my team. That’s the website that they can go to.
We’ve had a whole bunch of Tax Rep members go and take Michelle up on her training. With that, everyone, thank you for joining us this week. Michelle, thank you as always.
I can talk about this all day, Eric. You just have to stop me. That’s why you’re not afraid of selling. That’s why I’m not afraid. Many of your Tax Rep members are no longer afraid and getting paid upfront and doubling their fees and increasing their fees, and getting so detached from that. You can’t serve everybody and help everybody, but you can qualify and work with the exact quality clients that you deserve.
You just have to work on some of the belief systems. Eric, thank you so much for being here with us on the show. It’s always an honor to have you here. I love that you reached out so we could have this conversation now. For those people that want to learn tax representation and learn from your genius, how do they find you?
It’s TaxRepLLC.com. It is where our community is. Thank you for taking the time and doing this. It’s always fun.
We’ll have to do it again soon. Thank you.
Thank you all so much for joining Eric and me on another amazing episode on why neither of us is afraid of selling, why knowing your outcome and the results that you deliver for a client, and knowing their pain points and getting through some of your self-beliefs and sales beliefs is the number one thing. I want to cut to the chase. If you want our support on how to do that, we will show you the secrets to raising your fees by as much as 200%, starting getting paid upfront, and increasing your monthly recurring revenue right now without working more hours, without taking on more clients, or even losing a single client that you have.
I will show you how to do all this without discounting fees, sending quotes or proposals, and cutting down on your working hours so you can have more time to spend with your family and enjoy your life. All you need to do is head on over to TheAbundantCall.com to book your free breakthrough session with me and my team. We look forward to speaking with you soon. Have a beautiful day.
About Eric Green
Eric is a managing partner in Green & Sklarz LLC, a boutique tax law firm with offices in Connecticut and New York. The focus of Attorney Eric L. Green’s practice is civil and criminal taxpayer. He is the founder of Tax Rep LLC which coaches accountants and attorneys on building their own IRS Representation practices, and is the host of the weekly Tax Rep Network Podcast. Eric is also the author of the Accountants Guides to IRS Collection, Resolving Tax Debts and Resolving Payroll Tax debts.