This article is a guest post by Ron Finklestein of the Business Growth Experience.

I recently did the keynote address for a Cleveland-area real estate association. We discussed the power of the One Degree Difference. The One Degree Difference is simply changing your thinking by one small thought or one degree to get massive results.

Think of how it applies to sales leadership or sales skills and ask yourself what small change you can make to achieve more results faster.


You might be thinking one degree does not sound like much. It is huge. It is a big deal and it works. Think about it this way. At 211 degrees water is still water. At 212 degrees water boils and turns water into steam. Steam can heat your build, power a locomotive and make a great cup of coffee. On a hot humid day lowering the temperature in your home by just one degree can make all the difference.

When it comes to sales leadership / sales skills a person my not do something because he projects into the future the specific outcome he is expecting. For example one person will not practice a sales presentation because they are afraid of what others think. They expect rejection, ridicule, or a variety of other negative emotions. When we are successful in reframing their thinking about the negative outcomes into positive outcome, we can overcome that fear:

  1. Instead of rejection they appear more professional and competent.
  2. Instead of ridicule they understand people want them to succeed not fail.
  3. When they do the presentation they become more confident.

When I first started my public speaking career I found a Toastmaster’s group where I was very uncomfortable. I knew right away the discomfort was a personal growth opportunity and I joined. I wanted to be a better speaker so I could give speeches and sell to many people at the same time allowing me to leverage my time. I was part of that Toastmaster’s (AM Akron Toastmasters) group for eight years, even becoming president of the club. Just feeling the discomfort and not allowing it to dedicate my behavior allowed me to become a profession speaker and trainer I am today. Without shifting my thinking one degree I would not be where I am today. People tell me I am a natural speaker. It only took 10 years to become a natural speaker.

Sales leadership / sales skills are no different than become a professional speaker. Both require strong communication skills and a commitment to action. Like anything else we need to change our thinking about sales as a profession. To be good at something requires training, practice and ongoing support. It requires we reframe of thinking about sales. Sales is enriching the lives of people we meet. It is changing how they think about you, your product and your service. Sales skills can be taught. The most natural of sales people spend years perfecting their craft so it looks so easy natural.

Just as personal leadership can be learned, sales leadership can be learned. Sales training is learning effective and authentic communication to help the other person make an effective buying decision. Both sales leadership and personal leadership require you to communicate the value in a way that they understand so they can take action (buy from you.)

The buyer is in a position of power in today’s market. Many times they are ready to buy – that is why they are talking to you. They do not want to be sold they want to buy. Make it easy for them – be prepared, showcase your value, walk them into a buying experience (decision.)

At the real estate organization later that day, I did sales leadership training on how to become a better at influence and persuasion. We discussed the four most powerful words in the English language and the five most important copywriting words. Much of this sales leadership training was designed to help the audience understand how to help their client make a buying decision and how the little thinks could make a big difference. It really took a one degree shift in thinking.

This one degree shift in thinking leads to a change in behavior and this change in behavior leads to different action. That is all the one degree difference is all about – action.

Good Selling,

Ron Finklestein

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