After graduating from the University of Florida with a degree in Finance, Tom had two choices—one was to work at a bank. Though he was the only one in his family to choose sales as a profession, Tom started his career in healthcare, selling technology solutions for Shared Medical Systems (SMS).
Tom’s first training experience was a required 5-day sales course called Professional Selling Skills (PSS), held at the Xerox Sales School in Leesburg, Virginia. Much of the week was spent participating in hokey role-plays and memorizing lingo, so his first exposure to sales training left a lot to be desired.
In fact, as his employers hop-scotched from one sales ‘fad’ to the next, it didn’t take long to realize that many of the older-school tactics being taught in traditional sales training courses (many that are still around) no longer made sense in today’s increasingly competitive business environment.
Some combination of inspiration and ‘desperation’ motivated Tom to step outside the box of traditional sales thinking and experiment with ‘non-traditional’ ways to more effectively execute the various steps of the sales process.
As it turns out, one of the best ways to really learn how to sell is to fail—and then invest the time to understand why a particular idea didn’t work, in order to avoid stepping in similar ‘potholes’ moving forward. Fortunately, many of the innovative strategies Tom created and developed did work, vaulting him to become the top performer at multiple different companies, accumulating a diverse array of experience across a wide variety of industry expertise.
Once it became clear that Tom’s knack for creating new business and growing existing customer accounts was both systematic and teachable, he packaged his unique approach into a proven, highly strategic sales methodology called Question Based Selling™. He has since trained thousands of salespeople at QBS client locations all over the world.
Now, as Founder and President of QBS Research, Inc., Thomas A. Freese is a six-time bestselling author and is considered to be one of the foremost authorities on business development strategies, competitive positioning, and sales effectiveness training.
Why do companies spend millions of dollars telling salespeople what to say, but they spend almost nothing teaching them how to ask strategic questions? This trend is particularly strange, given that the effectiveness of the individual sales rep is usually more important than the solutions being offered or the company they represent.
All you have to do is look around within any company and you quickly notice that some salespeople are more effective than others, even though they’re all offering the same types of products and services to similar target audiences.
That’s why our mission at QBS Research, Inc. extends far beyond training salespeople, to deliver customized training, coaching, and licensing programs that give our clients an ‘unfair’ advantage in their respective businesses. How? By empowering their sales teams, and transferring the knowledge that enables sales leaders to coach their teams on “how” to more effectively execute given the ‘headwinds’ of today’s increasingly competitive business environment.m
Put it this way, just because a salesperson wants to ask questions, doesn’t mean potential buyers are “open” to sharing information with every salesperson who comes calling. Thus, the real skill in selling these days is causing potential buyers to “want to” share information with a salesperson they don’t yet know or trust.
It is truly an honor to be recognized as a thought-leader in the sales profession. For 20+ years, Question Based Selling™ has set the bar beyond the constraints of traditional sales thinking, empowering clients to maximize both their top and bottom-line results. Thank you for the confidence you have placed in our team. —Thomas A. Freese
Whether it’s in the classroom or the boardroom, Tom is known for his strategic vision, his relatable communication style, his real-world examples and exercises, and his energetic and often-humorous approach to teaching, skills development, and experiential learning.
When Tom is not in Atlanta enjoying his beautiful wife and two daughters, he is a dynamic and highly sought-after speaker and trainer; delivering content-rich, interactive learning experiences grounded by the logic required to ensure a successful implementation.
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