You Heard Me: ‘Lead, Sell or Get Out of the Way’

Published on March 24, 2009

New book from speaking pro and business development expert shows how great sellers provide outcomes, not just service – Excerpt # 1

By Ron Karr

The book — Lead, Sell or Get Out of the Way — reflects the reality that, in today’s market, there is simply no room for followers, but there is plenty of room for leaders who are willing to create outcomes that others have not yet imagined.

The Leader’s Wisdom
The competition is intense. If you do not assume a leadership role when it comes to producing results for your clients and helping them succeed at a higher level, your competition will be happy to do it for you — and will eventually push you out of the way.

Whether you sell a product, a service, or an idea, you must be able to influence other people as leaders do. Sales leaders don’t just sell products, services, or ideas, and they don’t just beat the competition at the same offering. They don’t even sell against their competition. They raise the bar by identifying previously unidentified opportunities, and they create whole new levels of performance for their customers. In turn, they achieve significantly higher levels of success than others. They are the masters of influence.

Your ability to sell more products and services in less time and at higher profit depends more on your ability to connect with and influence others about the outcomes you can deliver for them than it does on the actual product or service you are selling. For 30 years, I have proven this principle over and over again to my clients: What you are really selling is not products, services, or ideas, but outcomes — the results that people can expect from implementing your ideas and using your products and services.

This book is all about what works; it is not about theory. Everything I have laid out for you has been successfully implemented by my clients and by yours truly. Lead, Sell, or Get Out of the Way is a summary of everything I have learned, executed, and shared with my clients about leadership selling over a period of three decades. My clients have achieved remarkable things with this kind of selling. So have I, and so can you.

Two Ways to Grow a Business

There are two ways to grow a business successfully. The first is to develop organically from within, and make the same mistakes that everyone else has made. Although many people have done well with this approach, many have failed as well. This manner of cultivating a business takes more time and is far more costly than the second way, which is to acquire the knowledge and experience gained by other people.

By taking this approach, you can avoid making the same mistakes that others did, and you can move forward at a quicker pace. This is what this book is meant to do: help you sell more in less time at higher profit by adopting the same principles that the most effective leaders use to sell, without having to make the same mistakes they made along the way.

Three Choices

In today’s market, you have three basic choices.

==You Can Lead. You can establish a leadership role in your own life by taking full responsibility for your own outcomes and establishing an attitude of complete accountability.

== You Can Sell. You can use that leadership role in your sales career to build alliances that establish zones of strategic mutual benefit for you and others.

== You Can Get Out of the Way. In other words, you can make room for a competitor who is willing to do both of the things listed above. Make no mistake — that’s what’s on the horizon if you choose not to sell as a leader.

Lead, Sell or Get Out of the Way is designed to help you make the first two a reality and avoid the third altogether.

Leaders know that people don’t want to be sold. They simply want someone who’s responsible and accountable to help guide them through the buying process. They are not looking to buy products or services. They are looking for solutions to their problems. They are looking for positive OUTCOMES.

Over the years, I’ve been privileged to work with thousands of sales leaders — beginning with my mom — who established an integrated dialogue to share their vision, identify previously unimagined opportunities, build alliances, and guide people through the process of buying.

In Lead, Sell or Get Out of the Way, I reveal everything I have learned from those leaders. I share their case studies with you and show you exactly how the concepts were put into action.


Excerpted with permission of the publisher John Wiley & Sons, Inc. ( from Lead, Sell or Get Out of the Way: The 7 Traits of Great Sellers by Ron Karr. Copyright © 2009 by Ron Karr.

To order the book on line at Amazon, go to

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