How to Create Wisdom and Wealth

by, Bill Gough, Allstate Hall of Fame Member

They say wisdom comes with age and one's income generally increases with that greater wisdom. But the good news is you don't have to wait for your 90s to realize greater wisdom and, therefore, a greater income.

What's the one room that million-dollar homes have that more modest homes don't? A library.

The wise understand the way they got the million-dollar home was by investing. But not in the stock market. Instead, they invested in the most important thing -- increasing their knowledge. I am convinced that wisdom produces wealth.

I am shocked to learn most sales people have never read one sales book cover to cover.

I believe part of the reason is that sales people can acquire the title of salesperson or as we like to call them, Sales Superstars, just by accepting a job -- not by earning it.

For example… Most insurance companies call their support team members Licensed Sales Producers or LSP’s. Now, just because someone is licensed doesn’t mean they can sell a thing. They are more likely just quote givers and order takers. DO NOT introduce your prospects or customers to an agent using “Licensed Sales Producer” or “LSP”. They do not know what that means. AND… NEVER use the word SALES when introducing your agents. You’re better off saying “Licensed Agent” or as BGI likes to call them, “Home and Auto Specialist.”

Don't get me wrong. The best Sales Superstars embrace learning.

When you ask top-performing sales professionals which sales books they've read, they usually can cite several or maybe even dozens of books.

The best answer was from a sales candidate I was asked to interview. I asked which sales books he'd read in his career. His answer was "I've read almost any sales book I could get my hands on."

I quizzed him further and asked for three of his favorite books and why he ranked them so high. He passed with flying colors -- and, yes, he got the job.

I made several offers to this guy to buy my Huntsville location and he kept turning me down! He wanted to pursue his dreams by opening up an insurance agency with his father. Today, he and his father own their insurance agency that specializes in their own niche of business and it is VERY successful!

We are all always looking for ways to speed up our pursuit of wisdom. Here are a few ways that I found to help speed that up:

  • Invest in yourself. In most professions, you need to invest in tools of the trade. To be a carpenter, you have to buy a hammer, drill and screwdrivers. In sales, your most powerful tools are your brain, your attitude and your skills.
  • Set a weekly or monthly learning goal. My monthly learning goal is to read one book that will help my career in some way, one book to help my family and one just for fun.
  • Make friends with your public library. They have a business section. Grab some books for yourself; skim through them and then decide which ones to check out.
  • Use your commute time wisely. You know I am a fan of “Automobile University” -- Listen to recordings on your CD player or digitally through your smart phone that will improve your attitude and skills.

Once you've found the books you really like, buy them and start building your own library.

One of my favorite sayings is “You’re either growing or going and lifelong learning is certainly at the top of the list to help you grow. “

Good luck and enjoy your summer!