In this Expert Insight Interview, Shawn Rhodes discusses his book Bulletproof Selling: Systemizing Sales for the Battlefield of Business. Shawn Rhodes is a global expert on pivoting in challenging environments. As a war correspondent with the US Marine Corps, Shawn traveled to more than two dozen countries learning how elite teams execute their most demanding missions.
This Expert Insight Interview discusses:
- How Shawn Rhodes got the idea to write his book Bulletproof Selling
- Shawn’s experience with the US Marine Corps
- Why he thinks US Marines are “bulletproof”
Living with the Marines
Shawn’s role as a war correspondent was to embed inside combat teams as a US Marine. He was enlisted and carried a rifle alongside his camera and notepad. His task was to go around and try to understand how the US Marines could accomplish what most people consider to be impossible.
These men and women routinely volunteer to go into a building where they know people are waiting to do them harm, even though 50% of them will not leave that building under their own power.
Why Marines Are Special
As Shawn observed the US Marines across multiple combat tours, he realized that there was something special about these men and women. Not because they were incredibly brilliant, not because they were Mensa-level intelligent, and not even because they were exceptionally experienced — some were only 18 or 19 years old.
These folks are bulletproof. They know where a potential enemy will be hiding, and they know how not to injure each other as they go through with live weapons, grenades, rockets, and ammunition inside these tightly packed houses.
Finally, Shawn figured out the reason why US Marines were bulletproof. It was not because they had been hit by a meteor or bitten by a radioactive spider. These high-performing teams were bulletproof because of all of the times their predecessors hadn’t been.
They had a system of processing and debriefing each mission. Instead of just hanging up the phone and entering a quick note into the CRM like most salespeople today, the Marines analyze in detail what went well on each mission, what went wrong, what they could do better, what their company could help them with next time, and so on. This is something all sales teams can benefit from.
John is the Amazon bestselling author of Winning the Battle for Sales: Lessons on Closing Every Deal from the World’s Greatest Military Victories and Social Upheaval: How to Win at Social Selling. A globally acknowledged Sales & Marketing thought leader, speaker, and strategist. He is CSMO at Pipeliner CRM. In his spare time, John is an avid Martial Artist.