In this podcast, we sit down with Jack Hubbard, Chairman and Chief Sales Officer of St. Meyer & Hubbard, as he shares with us what it means to become a Resource Manager. You’ll learn how to shift your current sales approach to better serve your customers in this fast-paced and ever changing world.
Dallas Wells: Hello, and welcome to The Purposeful Banker. Podcast brought to you by PrecisionLender, where we discuss the big topics on the minds of today’s best bankers. I’m your host, Dallas Wells, thank you for joining us.
The title of today’s podcast is Trust Based Selling: Becoming a Resource Manager. This podcast is a part of our Bank on Purpose webinar series, so we talk to the folks who put on those webinars to get a feel for the things on their mind and the stuff that they would like to talk about in those webinars. We will be hosting the webinar that goes along with this on February 28th, and March 1st. I encourage all of you to attend, this will be good stuff. We’ll have links and details on all that in the show notes for this episode.
With us today is Jack Hubbard, Chairman and Chief Sales Officer of St Meyer and Hubbard, a company that he co-founded. Thanks so much for being here.
Jack Hubbard: Thank you, Dallas, great to be with you today.
Dallas Wells: To kick us off, Jack, give us a little bit of insight into your background and what you all do at St Meyer and Hubbard.
Jack Hubbard: Sure, thank you for that opportunity. I started this little journey about 44 years ago. I was telling you before we started that my background is really radio, TV sports play-by-play. Like a lot of bankers, I fell into banking quite by accident. I was a community banker for a number of years, and then spent the last 31 years as a consultant traveling around about 47 weeks a year, doing training and coaching, speaking … I teach at a lot of banking schools, and our little science project, we started 17 years ago. Our whole focus is to serve primarily community banks. Our smallest client is three branches, and we have some very large clients as well, but the whole focus is what we are going to talk about today.
That is helping bankers, whether they are retail bankers. Certainly we spend a lot of time with commercial bankers. I’ve trained about 68,000 of them myself and whether it’s retail, or a call center, wealth management, mortgage, commercial business banking, the customer is certainly very different today. As bankers, we tend to move pretty slowly. We’re conservative folks, and yet we have to understand that the way we have a dialog with our customers today is very different than it was in the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, and certainly even in the early 00’s. 2009 has changed everything, and certainly the internet has changed everything. If you read different books that we will talk about today, the customer is in much more control of the dialog than ever before. Therefore the banker, whether it’s a retail banker, the reactive situation, or a proactive banker, they have to be better than they have ever been before. Our whole focus is to teach managers how to coach that process, teach bankers how to have that process, and teach cultures how to sustain that process.
Dallas Wells: For anybody listening, if you want to get a little sneak peek at what Jack does, I encourage you to follow him on LinkedIn. That’s the first place I came across Jack. Some great stuff there, good resources to get you started. I think you’ll see what they are all about and the ways they go about helping banks.
Jack, for this next one, I have to admit this one’s really painful as a die hard St. Louis Cardinals fan. Being from Chicago, I’m sure you’re still celebrating that blast from the Cubs’ World Series Championship. What can bankers learn from that?
Jack Hubbard: You know Dallas, anybody can have a bad century. I always tell my St. Louis Cardinal friends and others that typically are in the World Series every year what we used to say in Chicago, which is wait till next year. I think Theo Epstein and the Cubs and the Ricketts family can teach bankers a lot about what it means to put a championship team on the field. Not just one year, but for every year. I get disturbed when bankers call me and they say, “Well, it’s 2017. Should we be focused on deposits or loans?” It bothers me because that takes the customer out of the equation. The Cubs really haven’t done that.
When they hired Theo in 2011, they were the dregs of the league and had been for many years, and were for a couple of years after Theo got there. He’s got an interesting philosophy, and I think it’s one that bankers can really learn from. One of the things he did was to work with the ownership of the team to create the mission. If you’re a bank, that’s one of the things you need to think about. Why are we here? We’ve heard for years we can’t be all things to all people, and the Cubs can’t either. They can’t have all home run hitters or all base stealers, or all great pitchers, or all great fielders. Everybody’s got their own talents and abilities, but they’re all fighting for the same championship.
They may not like each other very well today, but you would never know that from being on the field, so I think creating the mission is the first thing. The second one is to set to process. In our parlance we call it Sales Process. In the Cubs’ parlance they call it the Cubs’ way. That means up and down the organization, selecting players, selecting managers, selecting coaches that fit the culture of the organization and not the organization trying to fit the culture of the player. It’s really interesting when I talk to bankers, especially community bankers, who say, “You know, we’ve had somebody around here for 25 years. A pretty good performer. See, if I did sales training for him, or if I made him do something a little different he might quit.” The answer is, “Okay, that’s fine. I hate to lose him, but why are you here? Are you here for individual cultures or are you here for the overall good of the team?” Theo brought that to the table.
A couple of other things he did was he hired right. He had a couple of really good managers that were good foundational managers, but when he hired Joe Madden, he found the cream of the crop. Joe hired great people under him, and they mirror that Cubs’ way. Whether it’s the very young Minor Leagues, or the Instructional League, all the way up through the Majors, they have this playbook, they have this way that they want the Cubs to play. Then they draft players that are the mirror image of the team. That goes all the way from looking at high school and college kids all the way up to the Minor Leagues. They’ll get rid of people that don’t mirror the culture. They had a kid, Jorge Soler, who played in the World Series, and a lot of people remember that he didn’t run out a double, it could have been a triple, and that could’ve cost them the World Series. He’s not with the team anymore. It’s likely it didn’t cost him his career with the Cubs, but it certainly was a catalyst for it.
They went out, Dallas, and they executed, and then they brought in other things if they needed to. You’ve got injuries, and in banking people leave. They quit, they retire, they move. You always need to be there. One of the things I like to talk to bankers about, Dallas, is that you need to have enough planes circling O’Hare field, which is our airfield here near Chicago, so that if someone leaves, quits, retires or what have you, you’ve got somebody ready to move in. What I see a lot of times in banking is somebody leaves, we panic, what are we going to do with the portfolio and commercial banking? Then we hire somebody that fogs the mirror. If you want to have a sustainable culture, you can’t do it that way. The Cubs certainly had … We’ll see what happens. You’ve got a great golf club in St Louis, and I think we’ll be competitive together for a while. It was fun to watch last year, to see that they had great success.
Dallas Wells: It was a fun team to watch, and a cool thing to see, for that to finally happen. I begrudgingly enjoy it with you. Jack, one of the pieces you’ve put out … It’s a good one, we’ll provide links to it. It’s called It’s Time to Become a Resource Manager. You say in that, that the relationship managers and lenders at banks only spend about a third of their time actually selling. Why do you think that is?
Jack Hubbard: Here’s the analogy. When I was a kid we had a black and white television, and on Sunday nights we used to watch Ed Sullivan. He’d come on, and he had a lot of the different actors and The Beatles and the Stones, and everybody, but he had this variety show. He had this guy that came out with sticks and plates. He would spin them. His goal was to keep all the plates spinning. That’s what Resource Managers got going in their heads today. 33% of their time seems like a very small amount, and it unfortunately is, but if you think about it they’re doing a lot of credit stuff. In community banking, and you know this from your experience at PrecisionLender, people are spending a lot of time with credit’s babysitting and collecting. At community banks we just don’t have a lot of people hanging around waiting for something to do.
In smaller banks it’s a cradle to grave kind of approach. You’ve got that stuff going. Add to it all the regulations. Add to it the meetings that you have, and the training and the travel and all the rest of it, and it really does come down to about 33% of your time to prepare for calls. The way I say it is, “Look, if you can find a percent or two, here and there, well good for you. You’ve really helped your people.” But if you can’t, then what they have to do is they have to make that time 100% effective. The one way to do that is to stop doing certain things. Blitzes. I’ve never been for blitzes. I have never understood the concept. Cold calling. It makes absolutely no sense to me.
If you’re going to be a Resource Manager, you’ve got to think like a bankerpreneur. You’ve got to own your territory, and you’ve got to say, “Who do I want to bank with?” And the truth is, Dallas, and you know this in your business too, that really less is more. It’s not about having hundreds and hundreds of prospects in your funnel, your pipeline. It’s having the right ones in there and then working with your manager to move those forward. You can do a lot, even with 33%. By the way, I have to give a lot of credit to a company called CSO Insights. csoinsights.com. Every year they do these amazing research studies, and that’s where I got that data from. It’s probably going to be less and less, because what’s going to happen is bankers are going to get more and more in their portfolio which is going to cause them to be at the office more and more.
Dallas Wells: Yeah, I think you’re exactly right there. Part of that framework that you talked about, you use a concept called Trust Based Selling. Can you talk a little bit more about that?
Jack Hubbard: John Patterson is known as the godfather of all consultative sales, or sales. He worked for the NCR company back in the 20’s. Over the years, we’ve adopted different kinds of selling. Tom Hopkins is the gentleman that comes to mind for me when I think of consultative selling. Consultative selling is better than presentive selling in that you at least ask a couple of questions. A lot of times in consultative selling, you ask the buyer a question and no matter how they answer it, you try to spin it back to the product that you have, product of the month, campaign, or where you’re behind plan.
In consultative selling, what I like to say is, “It’s the banker versus the customer.” In Trust Based Selling it’s the banker and the customer versus the problem. The customer doesn’t wake up in the morning and say, “Gee, I’d like to have a line of credit today.” The customer wakes up and says, “How am I going to manage my growth today? How am I going to manage my cash today?” What I always talk to bankers about when they’re preparing in a Trust Based Selling mindset, it’s almost like a college case study. If you’re calling on a plastics company, or a doctor, or a veterinarian, get around to their side of the desk. What kind of issues might they be facing? When you start to think on their side of the table, the way you prepare for calls, the way you create questions, the way you have a dialog and present your solutions is really focused on the client.
I’ve a really good friend in the industry who you should probably have on a podcast sometime. His name is Charles Green. Charlie wrote The Trusted Advisor. I said to Charlie one time, “Tell me what The Trusted Advisor means. How do you know if you’re a trusted advisor?” Charlie said the definition is really simple. You know you’re a trusted advisor if when your best client comes to you and asks you as a banker to do something, and you know a competitor can do it much better on the client’s behalf than you can. You’re a trusted advisor when you’re willing to refer your best client to your toughest competitor.
To me, that’s a trusted advisor. What we do in our business, because we’re a little company and we don’t have a lot of clients, and we don’t want a lot more clients. I’ll refer business out to people that I trust and people are shocked all the time. Why? I want the banking industry to be successful. I’ll tell you the other thing, Dallas, and it goes to trust too. I’m fascinated by bankers who just look at the number of loans they have to book or deposits they have to book instead of the kind of business that they want. When you just look at a million dollar loan and say, “I need 10 of those.” You’re going to grab as many of anybody’s as you can. They way I look at this is it’s got to be a fit. The client that you select, you’re going to live with. You’re married to them, so you want to make sure that when you select a client that you can trust them, that they can trust you. That you can get deep and wide with them and there’s a real bond that’s built that creates a lifetime client.
Dallas Wells: We talk a lot about the … We hear all the time bankers complaining about the fact it’s becoming much more of a commodity business. You realize you’ve all done this to yourself, right? I think that’s what you’re talking about there. There’s real value in that relationship and in that trust.
Jack Hubbard: You bring up a great point. It’s always interesting to me. I teach a lot of banking schools at Stonier and the ABA Marketing school, and graduate school banking, and I’ll always ask bankers things like, “Well, do you take a term sheet out?” And I get a lot of push back from bankers. “Oh, we don’t take term sheets out anymore.” And I think, “Oh, that’s great. I’m glad you don’t, because you commoditize yourself.” They’ll say, “We email them now.” Oh, that’s so much better.
If we want to stop commoditizing ourself, we want to stop worrying about price, and we want to start to build trust. It really starts when you select the kind of company you want, when you communicate with them the first time, when you talk with them on the phone, when you email them, when you have a dialog with them. All of that negotiation, all of that dialog, all of that, “I can see working with you as a banker.” And, “I can see you having me as client.” All that happens throughout the sales process. It’s not just the beginning or the end.
Dallas Wells: Absolutely. As somebody’s listening to this and it’s making some sense to them, what are some little baby steps they can take to start that shift from relationship manager to resource manager?
Jack Hubbard: The first thing that bankers have to realize is that it takes time. We’ve got clients that have been doing this for five years, 10 years, 15 years, and they’re not there. This is a journey with no destination. Just when you think you’ve got everything put to bed, two people quit or three people retire, or you have a merger in your community and you have to react to that.
What are some baby steps? Let’s go back to Theo. Do you as a bank want to have a sales culture or do you want to have a performance culture? In a sales culture we do campaigns and training and we push product and we do cross selling and we close business. In a performance culture it’s all about cross solving. It’s all about trust, and it’s all about the manager making sure that they put stuff into the environment that causes the banker to perform well and to be fulfilled on their job. But the truth is, Dallas, that at a community bank or any sized bank, it really begins and ends with the CEO.
I’m so blessed in my career, I’ve trained an awful lot of bankers. Brian Moynihan, who’s the President of Bank of America was in one of my classes. Kelly King, the CEO of BB&T was in a couple of my classes. You can just pick out people who are going to go forward in their career and they’re going to really focus on the client and the colleague and the community, versus the product, the price, and the balance sheet. The truth is, Dallas, you know this, you’re in business to make money. We all want to do well, but if we can focus our energies on creating that culture for the long haul, and then putting managers in place that will allow people to perform well and be fulfilled. We hire people that can really be focused on the client and the conversation instead of the transaction. We’ve got it all.
That’s not easy to do, and it takes a lot of time, because what you have is … I don’t know about you, you sound like a big baseball fan to me. I’m a baseball fan, I used to be in rotisserie drafts. If you’re in the second year of rotisserie draft, you bring back players that you had the previous year. That’s what happens in banking. Every day, you bring back previous players that you had from yesterday. You can always add, but you can’t just fire the whole bank and start over. It does take time and patience.
Dallas Wells: Yeah, it’s a real building process. We talked a little about getting started. What are some of the difficulties that folks will run into early on? What are the common potholes there?
Jack Hubbard: Alignment is a real issue. Alignment simply means say do. It’s real easy to have a podcast or … Bankers are going to go to your amazing conference I’ve heard some wonderful things about. They’re going to hear a lot of speakers, they’re going to shake their hands, and applaud, and take a lot of notes, and go back. Then their reality sets in. What has to happen is, it’s easy to say anything. You have to actually go do something. You have to execute it. The real challenge is how do I align? How do I make sure that I balance the need for shareholder value and the need to get bottom line results with this long term approach that says if we really work on long term customer equity, long term client value, that the bank will really win in the long haul.
That’s a real leap of faith, because you’ve got … I’m on the board of directors of a community bank, as you know. As a board member, one of the things we want to look at is “Okay, what’s the bottom line? How did we do last month?” What I ask a lot of times, as a board member, and I ask a lot differently than a lot of board members, is not what did we do, but how did we do it? That’s the real issue. If I’m a banker, what I need to know is how I got success or how I didn’t get success, and what can I do the next time to do that again or what can I do differently the next time? I think one of the real challenges is at the executive management level, and they’re willing to have enough patience to play this thing out in a very very competitive market. Hiring people who are great coaches.
My point is that a lot of times in banking, either we hire somebody as a sales person and we don’t know what to do with them after 5 years of great success so we promote them to obsolescence by making them a sales manager. The Chally group is in Toledo, Ohio. It’s a great company, and they would tell you that only about 15% of great sales people become sales managers. What we need to do in banking is not to hire necessarily for the future, in terms of hiring a sales person that could be an executive, but maybe hire for the present a sales manager who’s willing to be a sales manager. Who loves to coach, because everybody needs to be coached differently, but everybody needs to be coached. That’s a real disconnect in our industry. That whole idea of behavioral coaching.
Dallas Wells: Sticking with our sports theme, it reminds me of the Cardinals, years ago, hired Bob Gibson to be their pitching coach. Of course, one of the greatest pitchers of all time. He goes to coach these young pitchers and he’s like, “Well, just do it better. Throw it harder.” He can’t understand why they can’t just do what he did. It made him a really a very poor pitching coach. Then you’ve got the flip side of that. Coaches who never played professionally but just like Phil Jackson are students of the game and willing to really take on that management type role. I think you’re right. We tend to take big producers and not let them produce anymore.
Jack Hubbard: It’s really interesting. There’s a great book written about Joe Madden. If you go back to the history of Joe Madden, the manager of the Cubs, he never played in the Major Leagues. He was a Minor League catcher, and he was barely any good to be a Minor League catcher. What people saw in Joe was a different kind of intelligence. An intelligence that said, “I can teach you to do this. I have the patience to help you do it, and I’m going to be with you as you do it.” Joe was never going to be a great player, but look what he did. It’s exactly the point, Dallas. We need to find people who are willing to coach. In community banking, one of the challenges in building a performance culture, and this whole resource manager thing, is that we have people that do many multiple jobs. In a smaller community bank, the sales manager is also a sales producer and they’re likely the top sales producer. That’s an absolutely horrible, unsustainable idea.
Dallas Wells: Absolutely. Jack, as we mentioned at the beginning, you’ll be joining us for the webinar at the end of this month. End of February, 1st of March. Can you give us a little idea of what kind of stuff you’ll be covering during that webinar?
Jack Hubbard: I do this a lot, Dallas, and I’m up in front of audiences almost every week. One of the things I always tell them is that I got a 4.0 in my education, and I’m very proud of that. I got a 2.0 in high school, and a 2.0 in college. You don’t have to be all that smart to be a great sales person, you just have to be real practical. I like to really talk practically. On the webinar coming up, I’m going to talk a little bit about a couple of books that I think could change the lives of sales people forever. We’ll talk a little bit about that. I want to talk about five C’s of resource management. I could give them to you now, but I would rather people come to the webinar to hear what those five C’s are. I like to call them the five C’s of resource management, plus one. There will actually be six of them. I want to talk a little bit about what a resource manager does from cradle to the grave, or from nine o’clock to six o’clock. Whether it’s preparing for a call, executing a call, or following up on a call.
I’m going to talk about things like what’s a great day to make a business development call and why is that particular day a bad day to have a sales meeting, and why is that the day that most people have one? There are days when people are more open to being called on than others, and we need to think a little more strategically about that. I’m going to talk about call planning without paper. I’m going to talk about insight based questions. I like to position this, Dallas, as questions that your banker could ask, or you could ask as a banker that no other banker would ask. Then I want to talk a little bit about some tools that some clients are using around welcoming brand new clients to the bank. Follow up letters without the follow up.
I like to give them a few websites, and a few additional ideas that bankers are doing. The way I like to position this, Dallas, is it’s going to be C’s of resource management, it’s going to leave you with a lot of practical ideas, and a lot of things you can actually do tomorrow.
Dallas Wells: Okay, perfect. As you can tell, there’s a lot of good stuff there from Jack. Sign up for that, even if you can’t make those particular dates if you’ve got a full calendar. Go ahead and register, that way you’ll get links to the recordings and you can catch all that good stuff from Jack. We will wrap it up there. Again, for more, come back February 28th, March 1st. Jack, thanks so much for doing this, and you’ll be with us at the Bank on Purpose conference in May, down in Austin, so we look very forward to seeing you there.
Jack Hubbard: Thanks so much, it was a privilege. Austin is one of my favorite cities, and PrecisionLender is starting to be one of my favorite clients.
Dallas Wells: Okay, perfect. Thanks to everybody else for taking the time to listen in today. If you like what you’ve been hearing, make sure to subscribe to the feed in iTunes, SoundCloud, or Stitcher. We’d love to get ratings and feedback on any of those platforms. You can always find more episodes as well as our show notes at precisionlender.com/podcast. Thanks for listening. Until next time, I’m Dallas Wells, and this is The Purposeful Banker.
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