On this federal holiday, known as Independence Day, marking the Colonies’ adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, which declared independence from the Great Britain and its king, we share our gratitude and loyalty to this great country – the United States of America!

 

Although Banks and the Federal Reserve are closed today, any transactions processed today will be funded into your account tomorrow.

 

If you are from those workaholics (like us) who are working today and may need assistance, our staff is available and ready to assist at 732-323-8300 or by email support@banquest.com.

 

Happy Holidays!

Alert! Independence Day 2017

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Yesterday CNBC writer Catherine Clifford wrote an article that really caught my attention.  Here is the short version of what she wrote:

 

Alphabet (Google) Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt presides over a company with a market cap of nearly $675 billion.  He was also CEO of Google from 2001 to 2011, a decade when the tech behemoth both went public (2004) and saw meteoric growth.

 

In those years when Google was rapidly expanding its workforce, Schmidt expected every hire to be top notch.  His favorite hires were former Olympians and football players who had played in the Super Bowl, because high level athletes have a well-refined sense of discipline.

 

“The discipline that they had in their lives as young people, men and women, to get to that point, indicated an extra set of discipline,” says Schmidt.

 

Schmidt liked to hire rocket scientists, too, because they are inherently interesting, he says.

 

Well, if you’re not that rocket scientist or professional athlete — then what makes you a great hire? In Schmidt’s experience, the are two specific qualities that best predict success.

 

“I would suggest — and this has since been confirmed by many studies — that persistence is the single biggest predictor of future success,” Schmidt says.

 

“There’s the author whose novel was rejected half a dozen times. The artist whose cartoons were turned down over and over. And the musicians who were told ‘guitar groups are on the way out’ and they’d never make it in show business. If they had quit, Harry Potter, Disney and the Beatles wouldn’t exist.”

 

Just make sure it’s the right determination, says  psychologist and New York Times best-selling author Adam Grant: “Don’t give up on your values, but be willing to give up on your plans.”

 

The second attribute that predicts success is curiosity, says Schmidt.

 

Billionaire buddies Warren Buffett and Bill Gates say that they are both driven by their inherent curiosity. “We both certainly share a curiosity about the world,” says Buffett.

 

For a long time under Schmidt’s tenure as CEO, Google had a famous “20 percent rule” that allowed employees to spend one out of five work days working on a project that they believed in. (The continued efficacy of the rule has been debated.) The policy, largely driven by a combination of internal motivation and curiosity, spawned such landmark projects as Gmail, Google Maps, Google News and AdSense.

 

“The combination of persistence and curiosity is very good predictor of employee success in a knowledge economy,” says Schmidt.

 

Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!

Kevin

How Persistent Are You?

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“Tell me a little bit about yourself”, and “Why would you be a good fit for this position” are the typical questions a potential employee would be asked during an interview.

 

However, some employers have been asking much more complex questions also known as “guesstimates” and “brainteasers”.    These types of questions are commonly asked by Wall Street firms, consulting firms, and tech firms.  What the interviewer really wants to know is, “Are you creative? Can you problem-solve? Can you think on your feet?”

 

Here are just a few guesstimates and brainteasers in the interview business, along with how to answer them.

 

  1. How many square feet of pizza are eaten in the United States each month?
    This is a classic guesstimate question where you need to think aloud. And so first you round the U.S. population to 300 million people (it’s actually about 315 million but rounding will be much easier and your interviewer will not score you lower for rounding). Then estimate how many people eat pizza. A decent educated guess is two out of every three people, or 200 million. Now let’s say the average pizza-eating person eats pizza twice a month, and eats two slices at a time. That’s four slices a month. If the average slice of pizza is perhaps six inches at the base and 10 inches long, then the slice is 30 square inches of pizza. So, four pizza slices would be 120 square inches (30 times 4). Since one square foot equals 144 square inches (12 times 12), let’s assume that each person who eats pizza eats one square foot per month. Since there are 200 million pizza-eating Americans, 200 million square feet of pizza are consumed in the U.S. each month. To summarize: 300 million people in America, 200 million eat pizza, average slice of pizza is six inches at the base and 10 inches long or 30 square inches, average American eats four slices of pizza a month, four pieces times 30 square inches equals 120 square inches (one square foot is 144 square inches), so let’s assume one square foot per person, and thus one square foot times 200 million people equals 200 million square feet of pizza a month.

 

  1. If you look at a clock and the time is 3:15, what’s the angle between the hour and the minute hands?
    Usually, if the answer to a brainteaser seems too easy, chances are the answer’s wrong. And in this case, the answer is not zero degrees. The hour hand, remember, moves as well. That is, in addition to the minute hand. And so, at 3:15, the hour hand and the minute hand are not on top of each other. In fact, the hour hand has moved a quarter of the way between the 3 and 4. This means it’s moved a quarter of 30 degrees (360 degrees divided by 12 equals 30). So the answer, to be exact, is seven and a half degrees (30 divided by four).

 

  1. How would you estimate the weight of the Chrysler building?
    This is a process guesstimate where the interviewer wants to know if you know what to ask. First, you would find out the dimensions of the building (height, weight, depth). This will allow you to determine the volume of the building. Does it taper at the top? (Yes.) Then, you need to estimate the composition of the Chrysler building. Is it mostly steel? Concrete? How much would those components weigh per square inch? Remember the extra step: find out whether you’re considering the building totally empty or with office furniture, people, etc. If you’re including the contents, you might have to add 20 percent or so to the building’s weight.

 

  1. If you have seven white socks and nine black socks in a drawer, how many socks do you have to pull out blindly in order to ensure that you have a matching pair?
    The answer is three: if the first one is one color (say, white), and the second one is the other color (black), then the third one, no matter what the color, will make a matching pair. (Sometimes you’re not supposed to think that hard.)

 

 

The first rule of guesstimates and brainteasers is there are two types of wrong answers: the random guess and giving up.

 

The second rule is interviewers, in asking these questions, are trying to gauge your composure, thoughtfulness, and creativity, but not necessarily your ability to get the right answer. In fact, with respect to guesstimates—questions that ask you to come up with a figure, usually the size of a market or the number of objects in an area—interviewers themselves don’t always know the exact answer. Thus, the best approach for a guesstimate question is to think of a funnel: begin by thinking broadly, then slowly narrowing down the situation towards the answer.

 

Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!

Kevin

How Many Manholes Are There In NYC?

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Just last night I was talking to a close friend who lamented the dreaded “Sales Dry Spell” they were stuck in.

 

It happens to virtually every salesperson.

 

Experienced business people know it as a fact of life.  Your business is just cruising along splendidly and all of a sudden, things get quiet.  Sales aren’t closing.  Nothing’s moving forward.

 

What happened?  You didn’t change anything.  Where did the magic go?

 

The sales dry spell is one of the toughest challenges you’ll face in your business.  When you begin getting No’s from your prospects, you first hope, it’s just a fluke or that you’re imagining things.  When it lasts a little longer, you start to wonder “Is it real?” or “What’s going on?”

 

At some point, you must face the inescapable.  You’re not closing.  And haven’t been for a while.

 

Then the really insidious stuff begins.  You wonder what you’re doing wrong.  You wonder where your skill went.  Was your previous success just luck – nothing to do with skill or competence?  Is the other shoe finally dropping – on your head?

 

Then your confidence and self-esteem begin that downhill slide like a bobsled at the Olympics.  You start to feel desperate.  And, worst of all, your prospects start to hear it in your voice.

 

Dry slumps are all in your head. Sales is a numbers game. You’ve got to get in front of 100 people to close one.  Most of the time, the numbers stay consistent. You talk to 100 people, one buys. Sometimes though, you go through 300 without a single show of interest.

 

Much like other droughts, sales droughts can end with floods, too. Patience always pays off. When you bust through those 300 without a sale, chances are in the next 100, you’ll hit three closes in a row. UNLESS, you let it get to your head. If the drought gets to your head, you may make 1,000 calls or more before you snap out of it…and that’s if you snap out of it at all.

 

Sales is all about numbers. There’s no algorithm. There’s not a salesman on the planet who doesn’t already know this.

 

So then, why do they let slumps affect them when really there’s no such thing as a slump?

 

Human emotions are some powerful things. After all, the most influential object on earth is the human mind. Emotions are manufactured by our limitless brains. Emotions will almost always interfere with rationality. Even though WE KNOW it’s a numbers game, we tend to talk in slumps and lose self-confidence. If we want out, all we need to do is keep hitting numbers.

 

The best salesmen have learned to avoid emotion and push on no matter what. We listen to motivational speeches, jam to music, read books, exercise and whatever else we can indulge in to avoid emotions. Emotions can cost commissions. Who cares if they say “No!” or don’t buy? There’s another prospect in line right after them.

 

With a sucker born every second, no matter what you sell, you’ll eventually close a deal.  Just stay in control of your mind and keep pounding the pavement!

 

To take it one step further, you can call past clients and ask them how they are doing and what results they have obtained through using your stuff. Those testimonials can arm you with word tracks to use in your next meeting. Plus, hearing happy clients will open up your mind and restore confidence in what you’re selling again.

 

Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!

Kevin

Stuck In A Dry Spell

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