Great conversation with Mickey Gamonal and Joni Schultz about the intriguing negotiation book, Never Split the Difference.  Please excuse the audio problems and the slightly truncated format – we had some technical difficulties with our recording!

 

 

Book Club - Never Split the Difference

 

Mickey Gamonal:

Hello, my name’s Micheal Gamonal, and I am moderating the book club discussion on Never Split the Different. I run Gamonal Tutors ASVAB Domination Program. So if anybody you know is joining the military and wants to get in at the highest level possible, let me know, and we can get them there.

Paula Williams:

Absolutely. I’m Paula William, ABCI. We help aviation companies sell more of their products and services, and our latest project is our sales skills challenge, which is going on for free all through July. And then that’s kicking off our professional aviation sales training course, which is starting in August. So if you’d like to get in on the free challenge and find out more about what the course is all about, you can go to aviationskills.com.

Joni Schultz:

Okay. Well, I’m Joni Schultz. I’m an aviation insurance broker, and I work with James A. Gardner Company, and I work with a great team of other brokers who have been in the business a really long time. I’m bringing my little piece of experience to the team, and if you know of anybody who’s entertaining purchasing an aircraft or a hanger or even a business related to aviation, please think of me and share my information and number. And I’ll take care of them.

Mickey Gamonal:

Perfect. Perfect. All right, sweet. So today, we’re talking about never split the difference by Chris Voss. I first heard this book on audiobook, so this is a quick plug for your local library. Go to your local library. They have audiobooks for free, and you can get great content while you’re doing whatever you normally do. I’m all about Audible and all of those self-betterment things, but the free public works is something I really believe in with a teacher background. You got to exploit those resources, man. That’s what they’re there for.

Mickey Gamonal:

But, anyway, to get into the book itself. This is by, as I said, Chris Voss. Chris Voss is a CIA hostage negotiator, so he did work in Honduras and the Philippines, and this is a book about negotiation, but not necessarily about hostage negotiation. What he does now is he runs the Black Swan business group, and in the book, they talk about what a black swan is and why that’s his company’s namesake.

Mickey Gamonal:

But, essentially, what he wants to do, from what I have gathered, is his grand scheme is to help people get the most out of their negotiations. He wants people to reach mutually beneficial agreements that will empower both the negotiator and the negotiatee to create the best relationship where people walk away. Even if they feel like one person won the negotiation, the other person lost, they both walk away feeling like winners. Everybody gets something more out of that.

Mickey Gamonal:

One this that he really fights against is wimp-win negotiations, which I think is very common, particularly with me, with my sales calls. Often times, I will look at the lowest possible boundary and set that as my starting point, and that is the mistake that I make in sales is, I think, “Okay, worst-case scenario. They pay me what I’m worth. I give them what I can.” That’s not ideal. Ideally, they pay me as much as they can, and I give them as much as I can. We want everyone to come away with the most possible benefit from what they can get.

Paula Williams:

Smart.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. That’s really what this book is about. One thing that did not come with the audiobook, go figure, was the one-sheet. There’s a one-sheet item in the back, and that’s kind of what I reviewed most recently. I’m going to go over the one-sheet a little bit later, but that’s kind of my initial thoughts on the book.

Mickey Gamonal:

So, go ahead, mom. Do you have anything to add as far as what you thought about the book generally?

Paula Williams:

I think probably the biggest thing, you mentioned black swan, and I think the entire year of 2020 has been full of black swans. It’s been like the flock of black swans in terms of … And the way he uses it, this is from page 216, the black swan symbolizes the uselessness of predictions based on previous experience. Black swans are events or pieces of knowledge that sit outside our regular expectations and, therefore, cannot be predicted.

Paula Williams:

Yeah, we’re in a blizzard of black swans right now with all of the crazy things that are going on that no one was expecting. The best way to navigate that type of a situation is to back off to the simplest situation, not the least common denominator, but say what do we know and what can we act on. But not having any expectations of if we do this, then that will happen. It’s just, let’s just experiment and see what we can do.

Paula Williams:

We can’t get much worse than some of the situations he’s been in, where he’s been negotiating with people who are determined to kill 45 people. How do you talk somebody down from that kind of a situation? In some cases, the best outcome is not going to be a good one, but it will be less bad than it would be otherwise.

Paula Williams:

Anyway, initial thought right there. The year of the black swan. We’ll call it that.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. No, I completely agree. I think the black swans are kind of like the unknown unknowns, and then you stumble across this opportunity that you never could have even considered without negotiating. I think it’s not in our nature to be on the lookout for those because we go into a negotiation with goals. And the one thing that he advocates in this book is maintaining an open mind and looking at things from your client’s perspective as much as possible so that you can find out what they need and what they want to do. From that, you can actually build a better rapport, which is a great idea.

Paula Williams:

Yeah, absolutely.

Mickey Gamonal:

How about you, Joni? Do you have any negotiation thoughts or anything like that?

Joni Schultz:

Well, it just so turns out, this is historical, but when we first started through this April COVID thing, I have a cottage in Maine. They weren’t allowing anybody to go up there without quarantining for 14 days, blah, blah, blah. But an interesting turn of events, they also wouldn’t let you go to the grocery store there as someone visiting because … And I don’t know how they were going to do this, but they said they were. The groceries are for the local people.

Joni Schultz:

And because this is a seasonal place that has an influx of people that move, or not move, but go there for the summer. Anyway, long story short, I had been teetering on selling this place. So I’m like, “You know what? I’m done with this. I can’t even go up to this place that I pay taxes for,” so I’m like, “I’m selling it. I’m putting it on the market.” I called the realtor, which I had toyed back and forth for several years to sell it. Then I’d go you there, and I’d go, “Oh, I just love it here, blah, blah, blah.”

Joni Schultz:

Anyway, so then I decided, “No, I’m not doing this. I’m going to call the realtor.” Put it on the market. We came up with a price, and in two weeks I had an offer. Now, we figured out the price. Now, they gave me an offer, sight unseen. They’d not even walked into it because they couldn’t. So they threw out an offer, and I’m talking to the realtor. This is the negotiation, and so I know the number that I’ve asked. I know the number they’ve given, and I’m going, “Let’s just see what split the difference is, what that number is.”

Joni Schultz:

So then I found it out, and then I talked to the realtor. I said, “Well, you know what I want is I want them to come back. I don’t want them to think about not buying. Because I want it gone.” because in this market, who the heck knew what was going to go on. I want it sold. So I said, “I don’t want to just split the difference. Well, I took the number, split the difference, looked at how much I would get out of that, and then looked at a number that I was willing to live with,” and I thought that they would just go, “Yeah” without hesitation.

Joni Schultz:

So I came up with that number, and that’s what they did. They took it without hesitation because I figured out the difference between what I really wanted and how much I was going to counter with them, and see how much of a real difference it would make it in my pocketbook. You know what I’m saying? It was a difference of $400.

Mickey Gamonal:

Whoa!

Joni Schultz:

That’s it. So I’m like, “You know what? I’m want to come up with a number that they’re just going to say, “Yes, I want it. Sold.” So that’s [inaudible 00:10:14].

Mickey Gamonal:

That’s awesome. Has it been closed on? Is it all wrapped up?

Joni Schultz:

Yes, we closed. We closed last Thursday.

Mickey Gamonal:

Nice.

Paula Williams:

Congratulations. That’s cool.

Joni Schultz:

It took longer to close than it did to get the offer.

Mickey Gamonal:

There you go.

Joni Schultz:

Which I guess is normal, but it wasn’t a cash deal. They had to go through a bank. But remember, this is a second home for people. This is not a primary residence.

Paula Williams:

Yeah.

Joni Schultz:

You know what I mean? This is discretionary income, and I’m like, “I just want it done.”

Paula Williams:

Yeah.

Mickey Gamonal:

When you say that’s normal, who’s to say, at this point, what qualifies as normal anymore? Anything could happen with that deal, so it’s great that it worked out.

Joni Schultz:

Yeah. And I feel like they felt like they got a win and I got a win.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah.

Joni Schultz:

Which is, I don’t know about if he’s fighting against that, or I don’t …

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s a little different. It’s similar in that he doesn’t fight against win-win. He wants everybody to come away happy, but he also doesn’t want people to make sacrifices. In your situation, where you made that sacrifice, he would probably argue that, “Oh, you shouldn’t have done that.” However, because you’ve done your motivation and you did your research, and they did their homework, and you knew exactly what you wanted, you didn’t necessarily lose. You came out exactly where you wanted to be, which is what he advocates for.

Mickey Gamonal:

That’s why there’s the one-sheet. The one-sheet is all about preparation for the negotiation deal. And because I just recently read it, he states that with the proper preparation for negotiation, he sees a seven to one ratio of basically coming into a deal prepared rather than trying to fix the pieces later.

Paula Williams:

Right.

Mickey Gamonal:

That’s the ounce of prevention is a pound of cure kind of thing. And that’s exactly what you did. You did your preparation.

Joni Schultz:

I did. I wanted to know. I just looked at a number, and said, “Well, geez, what difference is this between what I probably would have gone up a couple more thousand dollars? Because they were about 10,000 lower, and I only went 2,000 higher.” But I also looked at the fact that I wasn’t sure how it would appraise because if it doesn’t appraise for a certain amount, then the bank … If it was a cash deal, which I guess I didn’t know if it was or wasn’t, but I didn’t say only cash offers. Anything can come to the table.

Joni Schultz:

But the point is, I just knew that I couldn’t go over that because then they had to bring extra money to the table. They can’t. But if it’s 100% finance, then there’s appraisal situations.

Paula Williams:

Yeah.

Joni Schultz:

So, that’s part of the negotiation, too, of making sure you know what your property’s worth.

Paula Williams:

Right. There’s a real quick story that I came into this with, the never split the difference. The story that they tell, and this is the Pacific Institute, Lou Tice’s story, but a guy goes to the store, and there are three oranges left. He wants these three oranges. Then another guy also wants these three oranges, so they’re fighting over these three oranges. So the split the difference would be that each of them get one and a half oranges, and they buy those oranges, and they go off and do their thing.

Paula Williams:

But they started talking to each other, and, as it turns out, one of them was a baker that wanted the peels for fruit cake, and the other one was an athlete that wanted the orange juice. So, as it turned out, they just got together, went out to the parking lot, peeled the … I don’t know why they had tools in their cars or whatever, but one of them was a chef, so whatever. One of them peeled the oranges. Put the orange peels in a baggie. They juiced the oranges right there. The guy had his little beaker of juice to mix his sports drink with, and they’re both happy, and they got more than they would have gotten if they have just split …

Paula Williams:

Because you go into the situation thinking it’s all about the jelly beans. It’s all about the money. It’s all about the whatever the limited item is, but not everybody is going into it thinking time, money, emotion, effort, all of those things are of equal value to everybody. So that’s what I love about this is he goes into … And I’m pointing at my book here. He goes into this, every single situation going, “What is it that you want,” not assuming that he knows.

Paula Williams:

Mickey, I know you’re doing that in your sales calls right now. You’re not assuming that the money is the most important thing.

Mickey Gamonal:

Right. Well, that’s what I’m trying to do. I really struggle with it, thinking about it. In the one-sheet, the fourth step is non-cash offers. So, I’m drawing a total blank. So what could a 20-year-old give me that isn’t a cash offer that I can use to either grow my business or that sort of thing? I could take testimonials, but I’m not doing charity. I’m trying to get buy-in from my students, so I need to know that they’re invested.

Mickey Gamonal:

I am struggling a little bit with the non-cash offer, which is kind of like those athletes with the orange juice. I think it takes a little more forethought for sure, and also what it would take more from me is finding out exactly what the students can give me, what they [crosstalk 00:16:18].

Joni Schultz:

Oh, yeah. I what just thinking perhaps a service that they do, almost like a barter.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah.

Joni Schultz:

Say that you didn’t know your ABCI. You needed some marketing help or something or analytics or something, IT or whatever, something that you don’t know anything about the situation.

Mickey Gamonal:

Right, and for me, hearing that, I’m thinking to myself, “I know everything.” And that’s the exact problem that he’s talking about. That’s the exact problem that you’re talking about is you don’t. If you go into a negotiation thinking you know everything, you’re not going to get the maximum benefit from that negotiation. That’s pretty smart [inaudible 00:17:10].

Paula Williams:

So you can find out if they belong to any particular groups or anything like that, if they’ve got an ROTC group at their school or something like that that maybe they could introduce you too. You could find out if they could work for you in some way because you got a lot of grunt work that you need down in terms of posts that need to happen and other things that need to go on in your social groups and things like that. The more people, the better. In some of those, you could put them to work.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. No, that’s totally true, and you guys are both right. There are other things that I could use, but I need to start listing them out. I need to know what I want. If I can go in and say this is another option for you as like some sort of a fallback, then I’m great. Then I’m set. And so the more I can figure out about my clients, the better. That’s what the other three steps are.

Mickey Gamonal:

So I’m just going to run through those three steps real quick-

Paula Williams:

Please do.

Mickey Gamonal:

… and then I’ll let you take it from there [inaudible 00:18:13] if you have anything else that you want to throw on this.

Mickey Gamonal:

Step one is set the goal. The cool thing about this negotiation one-sheet is that I thought that the one-sheet would be kind of like a rubric with boxes, and you put your thing right there or whatever. You fill it out. But it’s actually just four steps. So the four steps and then you just use a sheet of paper, and you lay out these four ideas, which I think is way better because we live in a climate now where it is better … Where’s the worksheet? What’s the toolkit? And we want all of this stuff.

Mickey Gamonal:

It doesn’t do anything. So one cool thing about this book is it’s just like, use your own paper. This is what you need to know. These are the four things you need to know. You don’t need a survey gizmo that makes it look right. You just need to know these four things, so I like that. I like the critical analysis there.

Mickey Gamonal:

But yeah, the first thing is set the goal. So my personal goal would be $300 per month or $75 per week for tuition. That is what I’m going in, and I don’t have an upper limit, lower limit sort of thing. So I know that that’s something that I need to work on.

Mickey Gamonal:

Step two is going to be summarize the facts. My facts are going to be one, I know that they need help. Two, I know that I give help. Three, I know that there are free resources out there, and four, I know that free resources don’t help most people. The majority of people who get free stuff don’t use it anyway or think that it’s worthless either way.

Mickey Gamonal:

Those are a few of the facts that I’ve come to the conclusion with. And for you guys, I’m sure it’s easy to come up with the facts for your clients. You guys have a little more research. You’re not just taking kids off the street or off of Facebook. You guys use people who are probably a little more vetted and people who have very clear objectives.

Mickey Gamonal:

So there’s two more. The next thing is labels and accusations. Labels and accusation audit, this is where you use your it seems like questions. So my it seems like statements are it seems like money is valuable to you. It seems like you want to join the military. It seems like you need help with math or word knowledge, and then it seems like you are reluctant to join the pro group. So these it seems like really give your client the opportunity to respond.

Mickey Gamonal:

This isn’t me saying, “Oh, this isn’t for you.” This is me saying, “It seems like you’re not interested, or it seems like you have something else in mind.” That’s a digging tool. When I say it seems like they are more likely to give me information about it.

Paula Williams:

So that’s active listening, right?

Mickey Gamonal:

Mm-hmm (affirmative). Exactly, exactly. And then, number four is going to be those calibrated questions. So coming in with three or four calibrated questions is going to help you a lot. What’s the biggest challenge you face is a great one. How does this fit into your objective, and what are we trying to accomplish. They’re just clarifying questions, trying to figure out exactly what’s going on, and that’s where the black swans are going to jump out.

Mickey Gamonal:

Throughout all three of these steps, you’re going to see people offer more information than you ask for, which is what you want.

Paula Williams:

Right.

Mickey Gamonal:

Then step five, as I said, non-cash offers. So what would you take if they weren’t going to pay you, or is there something that they could pay you less for and you would give them more? His non-cash offer that he took, or his particular black swan example, was he is a negotiator, and he did kind of like a … Not necessarily a book club, but he did some sort of an interview, and they were trying to pay him less than what he wanted.

Mickey Gamonal:

But they told him, “Hey, we can put you on the cover of our magazine,” and he wouldn’t have known that if he wasn’t asking these calibrated questions. As soon as they said, “Hey, we could put you on the cover of the magazine,” he said, “Well, that is infinitely more valuable than what the money figure that I was looking for, so I’ll take whatever half price you want to give me, and I’ll take the cover of the magazine. Definitely.”

Mickey Gamonal:

It made the person who did the interview … Because the person who did the interview was trying to show his bosses that he could do cheap deals, that he could get this big speaker on for on the cheap. So it was a win-win-win all the way around because of the calibrated questions. That would be the non-cash offer that was highlighted in the book.

Paula Williams:

Right. That’s fantastic. I think this is going to be a little bit of a struggle for aviation culture kind of folks because they come from a world where everything is check listed and everything is rigid, and you have a very detailed procedure for just about everything that you do.

Paula Williams:

Then, over here, you’ve got negotiation and black swans and craziness and thinking out of the box. It’s almost the exact opposite of what people are used to, but then you think about when somebody is a Sully Sullenberger situation or something like that, that is a black swan. That is a this is not supposed to happen, what the heck do we do now kind of a situation. I’m just trying to figure out how to apply this and how much my clients are going to struggle if I suggest that they use this in a sales situation.

Paula Williams:

Anyway, that’s an excellent summary. I like the rundown.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah, now the five steps are great, and I’m so happy I wrote them down. I plan to continue. I will rewrite those drafts because I want to … I’m going to continue to do sales calls, and, as such, I need to be more familiar going in, particularly with my calibrated questions, because that does not create assumptions about my client. It asks, which is so much more valuable for two reasons. Even if I know the answer to what I’m asking, if they share it with me, they get that opportunity to let themselves know exactly what they’re looking for, which is more important than me telling them.

Paula Williams:

Right. Right.

Mickey Gamonal:

That’s an added benefit.

Paula Williams:

Joni, I know you’ve done sales for many, many more moons than I have. You’ve got a lot more experience in things like that, but does this sound like something that you could or have used in the past?

Joni Schultz:

I was just sitting here. I’ve done, yeah, sales in different ways, but mostly there’s no negotiation with pricing. [inaudible 00:25:25] I’m just the middle person, so it’s hard. But as you were presenting this, I thought, “Well, yeah. Since I don’t really create the pricing myself, but what if I wanted to go to someplace to advertise my business? I could use these steps very easily for that.”

Joni Schultz:

Well, maybe your goods and services don’t have any negotiation-

Paula Williams:

Flexibility, right.

Joni Schultz:

… [crosstalk 00:26:05] flexibility. There’s other areas of … Especially for me because I’m kind of the one-man show. I’m just a producer. Not just, I mean, I’m a producer, so I’m earning a commission, and that commission is set, and that pricing is set, and my condition’s based on that.

Paula Williams:

Right, but do you negotiate on terms or anything else? Is there anything that is flexible about the policies that you provide or anything like that where we could say we could cover more planes, but not your hangers or those kinds of things to get to a solution that will work for the amount of money that you’re willing to pay?

Joni Schultz:

Yeah. Basically, when I go out and get quotes for new business, every company has a different policy. We write different coverages in their policies, and that’s what created, that’s what different between all of the different companies for insuring a Cessna 172, whatever. There’s Starr has a great … They have no deductibles. They don’t do any deductibles, so where these other companies are tacking on high-percentage deductibles.

Joni Schultz:

I don’t negotiate that, but I can definitely present that to my clients as a benefit. It’s not a monetary benefit. Well, it is if they have a loss, but that kind of thing. But I do have my favorites, and I’ve developed my favorites over just this short time, which actually is about a year now. I can’t believe it’s been a year since I started.

Mickey Gamonal:

Is that favorite clients or favorite what was it?

Joni Schultz:

Favorite policies because of the extra features that they have built into their policy and things that they cover that they don’t … Like a non-owned policy for a pilot. This is just an example. So if they’re a CFI and they want a non-owned policy meaning it covers any aircraft that they don’t own that they fly on a regular basis, this CFI gets an endorsement for this non-owned for negligent instruction.

Joni Schultz:

Not all companies offer that endorsement, and that’s a good endorsement to tell a CFI because suppose this person says, “You never taught me that-

Mickey Gamonal:

Yep. You need that coverage.

Joni Schultz:

It’s not negligence in that … But it’s like they forgot to teach something.

Paula Williams:

Yeah.

Joni Schultz:

Someone claims that they forgot to teach something kind of thing. You get it?

Mickey Gamonal:

No, that’s a great example. That’s a great example, and that is a black swan for them. That’s something that probably most of your clients will never even consider until you say, “Hey, this is an added benefit that you should be aware of,” and that’s what you want to be offering. You want to be offering that kind of value, so that’s a great example.

Joni Schultz:

Yeah.

Paula Williams:

Absolutely.

Joni Schultz:

Everything’s insurable. You can endorse anything for a price. Sometimes they charge you for those endorsements, and sometimes they throw them in, but you’ve got to ask. You have to know to ask.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah, how would you know? Exactly.

Joni Schultz:

You wouldn’t know. Right, that’s the benefit of a broker as opposed to an Avemco Insurance Company that you just go directly to the company. You’re not an insurance professional. You don’t know what to ask. That’s what I’m worth is that commission.

Paula Williams:

Yeah, I think most people only think about insurance twice a year. Once when they write the check, and second when they, heaven forbid, something happens. That shouldn’t happen once a year, but …

Joni Schultz:

Yeah, right. Right. Exactly. No. No, and that’s when you really understand what the value of that policy is is when you have a claim, and then it’s too late. So I always say to people is that, “Why would you want to pay insurance for something if you know it doesn’t cover that?” To me, if I’m going to pay for something, I want to pay for it and have it payout if I need it. That’s the worst-case scenario is to pay in and it never covered the contents of a hangar. These people think that they have hangar insurance, and the contents are covered. No, that’s not true.

Joni Schultz:

Well, it was in there. No, you have to itemize it. It’s very different. It’s an education, and I get into I like educating people and it. I don’t know. It just gives me pleasure, I guess.

Paula Williams:

Well, you’re talking to three educators or two other educators, so.

Joni Schultz:

Yep, exactly.

Mickey Gamonal:

No, there’s a huge benefit there. That is exactly the kind of win-win situation that we’re talking about. Nobody’s losing anything by you letting them know, that’s just so great. That’s the kind of powerful stuff that you want to tap into as a salesman and as a negotiator is this is going to get both of us where we want to go faster and better. How can you add to that? Those are the kinds of questions that I want to ask during my negotiations for sure.

Joni Schultz:

I’m going to order this book today.

Paula Williams:

Well, what’s funny is I went into it thinking, “This guy’s going to be a blowhard, badass, whatever because he negotiates all of these tough situations with serial killers and hostage-takers and crazy people like that. So, of course, he’s going to be a real tough guy, but before him, the practice was always separate the problem from the people and be a real cold calculator of circumstance and things like that. And after him, he’s changed the entire culture of negotiation to be one of what he calls tactical empathy.

Mickey Gamonal:

Love and acceptance. Yeah.

Paula Williams:

Well, not love and acceptance, but tactical empathy. They’re two different things. Not hugs. Not hugs and tears.

Mickey Gamonal:

It’s a lot squishier to hear it out loud. Tactical empathy versus cold and calculating, which one do you think the CIA’s going to employ when dealing with a hostage-taker or a terrorist? Are we supposed to be using tactical … Tactical sounds cool, but as soon as you throw empathy in there, it’s like, “Yo, let’s get HR in here, man. CIA’s messing up.”

Paula Williams:

Right. Well, his definition, let’s see, “I tell my students that empathy is the ability to recognize the perspective of a counterpart and the vocalization of that recognition. That’s an academic way of saying empathy is paying attention to another human being, asking them what they’re feeling, and making a commitment to understanding them, not agreeing with them, not telling them they’re right, not hugging them, not spilling tears over their childhood or anything like that.”

Paula Williams:

I love that. I think that’s where I need to be. I need to be sometimes a little bit tougher than I am, and Mickey will probably disagree because he probably thinks I was pretty tough, but in a sales situation, I need to be a little bit tougher than I have been, but I can’t go all the way to Zig Ziglar. That’s not my personality, and I can’t be my money is in your pocket, and your products are in my trunk. I’m just here to make the exchange. That is not the kind of person I am. But I could be this kind of person, so that gets me closer to something that’s effective for me.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. No, love it. I love the-

Joni Schultz:

You can’t be somebody else. I’ve tried.

Mickey Gamonal:

Right, you listen to tapes.

Joni Schultz:

You can take somebody’s tactics, and it’s got to be part of you. You were saying.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah, you can’t reinvent yourself for a sale. That’s so insincere to begin with that that is neither wimp-win nor win-win. That’s just losers everywhere. Nobody [crosstalk 00:34:58].

Paula Williams:

Losers all over the board.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. Well, cool. No, you’re exactly right. One thing that he talks about that I started employing with my fiance is he says-

Paula Williams:

Oh, heavens. You’re going to spill the beans. Is she going to listen to this?

Mickey Gamonal:

I don’t know if she’ll hop on this call, but basically, she’s a state over. We’ll see. Anyway, the deal is if you say that’s right versus you’re right. He was talking about a negotiation with his son. He was trying to convince his son to play defensive end instead of tackle or whatever. And his son would always just agree and say, “Yeah, you’re right. You’re right. You’re right.”

Mickey Gamonal:

But until he presented it in a way that his son said, “That’s right … ” That’s a very, very small change. You’re right versus that’s right. But if something is objectively true, not relating to a personal pronoun, then it has nothing to do with them. It’s just a fact. As soon as it becomes a fact, that’s when it matters to everyone. That’s what drives change is facts.

Mickey Gamonal:

Then he says, “What you want in a negotiation is you want whoever you’re negotiating with to say that’s right.” You want them to agree with you, but not in a way that makes you look like you’re smarter or not in a way that makes you look like you’re better, but in a way that makes them realize that you’re just stating objective facts.

Paula Williams:

I like that.

Mickey Gamonal:

I was stuck on it forever after that because you say you’re right all the time. When you’re talking to people, you’re like, “Oh, you’re right. You’re right.” But if you start to break that down and you’re like, “Wait a minute. Am I really agreeing with them, or am I really just telling them to shut up?” which is what he says you’re right really means is shut up.

Paula Williams:

I don’t care enough about this to keep arguing, so you’re right. That’s different than that’s right, which is you’ve got a point.

Mickey Gamonal:

[crosstalk 00:37:04] whole new death to disagreements in relationships. As soon as you don’t give them an out when they say you’re right, which means shut up, as soon as you … You get a whole new round with whatever you were fighting about.

Paula Williams:

So how do we use that, though? You’re talking to somebody. You want them to say that’s right, and, of course, you can do that from your end. Whenever you’re stating an objective truth, I can say that’s right rather than you’re right, and that definitely improves the situation, but how do you get the other person to that point?

Mickey Gamonal:

If you are arguing with someone, and then they say that you are right, what you do is use those calibrated questions. Because if they say you’re right, we’ve already agreed that that means shut up. So what you then want to do is you want to ask about what they think. Then you say, “It seems like you think that I’m correct,” or, maybe better yet, “It seems like you think that math knowledge is important.” Boom, they take it from there.

Mickey Gamonal:

Because as soon as you say that, you’re leaving them open to run. And so they can say, “Oh, yeah. Math knowledge is important, but … ” And then you get deeper into what they really value, which is what you want.

Paula Williams:

Then a black swan flies out of their ear, and then you’re off to the races.

Mickey Gamonal:

Exactly.

Paula Williams:

Oh, that’s cool.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah, so I have a new tactic. Every time I hear somebody say you’re right, you calibrate that question to dig deeper to see … Because if they say you’re right, they still think you’re wrong somewhere because they just say you’re right. So you’re right, but … And then you can get to that but. As soon as you get to what am I wrong about, you can use that to your advantage. You can figure out exactly why they say that you’re right, but they don’t give a damn. And you need to know why they don’t give a damn, so you ask that calibrated question.

Paula Williams:

Right, okay. So you’re right, but that’s important to me. My math skills, I really don’t care about. I just want to get the score on the ASVAB that I want so that I can get the job that I want. But I really don’t want to have to learn math in the process of doing that.

Mickey Gamonal:

Right. Well, and a perfect example is if you’re doing a sales call and they say, “You’re right. I need a marketing strategy. I don’t have one, and you’re right. I need a marketing strategy. And you’re right.” So then what you would say … Do you have a guess as to what a possible response to that would be?

Paula Williams:

I could say something about it sounds like you agree that a marketing strategy would be ideal, but it’s probably not on your top three things to do this week because normally, it’s not. So people might agree that it’s important, but they won’t agree that it is the most important thing that they could be doing with their time or their money right now.

Mickey Gamonal:

Exactly. Exactly. It seems like you agree that marketing is important. However, there may be other priorities.

Paula Williams:

Yeah.

Mickey Gamonal:

And you don’t say anything else. You don’t say anything about their priorities because then that’s their chance. That’s their opportunity to tell you exactly, from the horse’s mouth, why they can’t work with you. As soon as you have that information, that is something that’s actionable.

Paula Williams:

Right.

Mickey Gamonal:

Otherwise, it’s nothing. It’s a lost cause.

Paula Williams:

So then you do the hardest job in a sales call, which is to shut up and wait.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. No, it’s like they used to say about the Beatles. It’s the notes that they don’t hit. Ringo Starr, the Beatles makes the best music ever, but it’s not necessarily the music that they’re playing. It’s the pauses that really make their music amazing. That is probably true of all conversation. I try all the time to try to talk a little bit less, and I’m not very good at it. But particularly in Peace Corp when I would quiet down and clam up a little bit, I would get so much more out of every interaction.

Paula Williams:

I have no idea where you got that from. Yeah, it is a struggle, and especially when you’re uncomfortable. You’re in a sales call. Your natural inclination is to fill the pauses with information and reasons that they should buy from you and things like that.

Paula Williams:

Joni, I know you’ve sold many, many different kinds of things in retail and fundraising and everything else, so I’m sure there’s probably some wisdom you can drop on us here.

Joni Schultz:

Well, I, too, have learned to not talk as much. And I look at my daughter, who’s 19, and she non-stop talks, and I’m going, “That’s exactly the way I was.” I can see that. I don’t mean when I was her age, but not long ago. I would just talk too much.

Joni Schultz:

Yeah, and honestly, I think the way I learned, well, is a few things. A lot through I was very active in direct sales. I know a lot of people poo-poo a lot of the direct sales companies, but you learn so much about yourself. Because it’s just you are that person. There’s nobody telling you what to do. You are learning how to motivate yourself. You are learning how to connect with people.

Joni Schultz:

I did huge sales. But I believed in the product, so these are the things. You’ve really got to believe in the product, or you can’t sell it.

Mickey Gamonal:

No, you’re right.

Joni Schultz:

You really can’t because people see through the non-passion if you call it. They really do. So that’s where I learned most of about myself, and the fact that I guess I’m a good salesperson. Maybe I could be a lot better by really engaging in a few of these other people books and stuff like that, especially this one. I think I really would enjoy reading.

Joni Schultz:

But that’s, yeah. I don’t know. I just feel like I need to listen more, and I’ve learned to listen more.

Paula Williams:

Right. One thing that I wanted to get back to, Mickey, is the fact that it’s almost never about the money. I don’t know if you have any additional thoughts on that, having just had a conversation that we talked about where it came down to the misconception that it’s always about the money. And if your price is above X, then you’ve got a problem and that kind of thing. But I don’t know if you’ve had any further thoughts on that that you want to share.

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah. No, absolutely. I think for anybody out there who’s buying or selling anything, what you need to … the toughest thing to realize is that money is only a tool. It’s just a tool that is going to help you get whatever you want. You can’t use it for anything else. That’s all it does.

Mickey Gamonal:

So if you’re not getting what you want from your money, you should probably use it to get something that you want. So as such, I need to start viewing … I intend to start viewing money as something that only shows the investment because my objective isn’t to make money. I’m not in business to make money. I’m in business to make people better.

Mickey Gamonal:

That’s what I want to do. I want to empower students to go be better military leaders in the future. I want them to believe that they’re smart enough to score the ASVAB well. I want them to think that, “Okay, if I get a job as an operations specialist, I’m as good as the person next to me. Not because I barely got in by the skin of my teeth. I can do hard stuff.” That’s what I want people to believe after working with me. And the money is just to show that you’re going to put in that effort to do that day in day out.

Paula Williams:

And you had some difficultly investing in some training for yourself a few months ago. Is that something you could share?

Mickey Gamonal:

Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So I paid for a tutoring program, a program that teaches you how to build a tutoring business. And it was $600 upfront for 10 weeks, and I got cold feet before I paid for it. I got cold feet after I paid for it. It took about three weeks for me to be like, “Oh, thank God.” Because I’m just so happy now that I paid for it because I have a rubric, and that’s where I was flailing. I didn’t have somebody who knew how to do what I wanted to do.

Mickey Gamonal:

Now that I have someone who’s already been there done that, they can lay out the steps. And I’m actually making progress on my goals, which is recordable progress. I can look back at how far I’ve come so far and see that I’m getting closer to where I want to be. Without me investing initially, I would still be completely floundering. I’d be dropping off fliers for free lessons on street corners, hoping that somebody calls me, and that’s just not where you want to be.