The Way of the Wolf 

Introduction to "The Way of the Wolf"

The Way of the Wolf by Jordan Belfort writes about his extraordinary rise to wealth and the following spectacular crash. From our perspective the interesting thing is that it also explains some of the sales techniques he used to make a great many sales. .

Despite the fact that Belfort's was undeniably a great salesman, his motives were not the best.
Nevertheless, the methods he used to achieve such remarkable sales results are well worth studying and implementing.

In "The Way of the Wolf," Belfort delves into the intricate psychology of selling, emphasizing the significance of establishing rapport, overcoming objections, and refining essential skills. These skills are similar, in some ways, to the skills I suggest you use and if you use these skills , your powers of persuasion will improve and your sales results soar.

At the peak of his career, he found himself immersed in an unimaginable wealth.
In his own words, Belfort confessed, "The year I turned 26 I made $49m, which really pissed me off because it was three shy of a million a week." This staggering financial success serves as a testament to the efficacy of his sales methods, even though his motives may have been flawed.

We need to separate his principles from his motives because the sales wisdom shared in this book can revolutionize your approach to sales and lead you to greater success.

Way-of-the Wolf

Chapter 1: Cracking the Code for Sales and Influence

In The Way of the Wolf, Jordan Belfort asserts that  three core elements must align in a prospect's mind for a successful close.
He calls these "The Three Tens".

The first element revolves around the product being offered.
The prospect needs to be completely convinced that the product is best thing since sliced bread.

A rating of 10 on the certainty scale indicates that the prospect passionately loves the product, while a rating of 1 signifies absolute disdain.
“5” this is referred to as “sitting on the fence”.
Or as he says in the book “Please influence me now! I can't make up my mind, so please help me!”.

People want to buy things that will make their lives better, so if a prospect sees your product negatively, it becomes nearly impossible to close the sale. However, if they view your product as exceptional, their are very likely to buy.

But, even if a prospect rates the product a perfect 10, it doesn't guarantee a sale. 

The second element involves having trust and connection with you, the salesperson.
The prospect must find you likeable, trustworthy, and an expert in your field.
Additionally, they should feel confident that you care about their needs and will promptly resolve any issues that may arise.
Trust in you is crucial and can make or break a sale. I refer to this elsewhere as building rapport.

Combining the first two elements still does not guarantee a sale. 

The third element is the prospect's trust and connection with your company.
If your company has a questionable reputation, it will lose customers and struggle to attract new ones. Interestingly, it is easier to sell to existing customers due to the established relationship they have with your company. Only the first two elements need to be addressed in such cases.

Two types of certainty exist: logical and emotional.

"Logical certainty" is about in facts, figures, features, and benefits.
Emotional certainty, on the other hand, stems from a feeling that something must be good.
Although both types are important, people tend to buy based on emotion and later justify their decisions with logic.

You need to create airtight logical cases followed by airtight emotional cases to win the sale.
By first satisfying the prospect's logic, their "bullshit detector" is appeased, allowing them to be more receptive to emotional appeals.

Uninterested prospects need to be dumped as soon as possible. Don't waste your time on a full-blown sales presentation. Objections raised during the sales process typically serve as smokescreens for underlying concerns regarding one or all of The Three Tens.

Chapter 2: Inventing the Straight Line

Take immediate control of the sale, and then move the prospect from open to the close along the shortest distance between any two points: a straight line.

Do this by asking questions in a manner and sequence that not only promotes a smooth, mutually productive intelligence but also builds rapport Identify their core and secondary needs
By asking questions strategically, you identify the prospect's core and secondary needs, uncover any beliefs that may affect the sale, understand their past experiences with similar products and salespeople, determine their values, and assess their financial standards. Additionally, you delve into their pain points, discovering their primary financial worries.

Every word, phrase, and question in your goal-oriented communication should aim to increase the prospect's level of certainty. 

In The Way of the Wolf  Jordan emphasizes two additional elements in the straight line system: lowering the action threshold and raising the pain threshold. These, combined with the three tens, form the five core elements of the straight line system.

The action threshold refers to the level of certainty a prospect needs to reach before feeling comfortable enough to make a purchase. It can be influenced and lowered through effective sales techniques.
On the other hand, the pain threshold, the final core element, is crucial for challenging customers who are resistant to buying even after lowering their action threshold. Pain acts as a powerful motivator and creates a sense of urgency

Remember in your intelligence gathering to identify:

  • Their needs, core needs and problems they might have.
  • Any core beliefs they might have that could impact the sale.
  • Past experiences they’ve had with similar products.
  • Values – meaning, what things are most important to them.
  • Financial standards, their spending ability.
  • Where their pain lies.

Throughout the sales process, you keep the prospect on the straight line while engaging in conversation.
During the sale, your prospect keeps trying to take you off the straight line and take control of the conversation.
You keep them on the straight line by your questioning. And by continuing to build on the rapport that you already have, then use that rapport to help you gather the more intelligence.

It is important to continuously increase their level of certainty through your words.
Asking for the order multiple times is often necessary before the prospect finally says yes.
(me ... the best salespeople in the USA close AFTER the 5th No)

In summary,  the Five Core Elements of the Straight Line System

  • The prospect must love your product
  • The prospect must trust and connect with you
  • The prospect must trust and connect with your company
  • The action threshold 
  • The pain threshold

Every word that comes out of your mouth is feeding into one single goal, which is to increase your prospect’s level of certainty to the highest possible level

Chapter 3: The First Four Seconds

It takes only a quarter of a second for a prospect to make an initial decision about you if you meet them in person.It only takes four seconds over the phone to take control of the sale.

In the critical first four seconds of an encounter, it is essential to establish three key factors for a favorable perception:

  1. Sharp as a tack: You must exude competence and demonstrate that you can effectively address the prospect's needs and desires. Becoming an expert in your field is vital for long-term success, proving that you not only talk the talk but also walk the walk. If prospects don’t think that you’re sharp as a tack, you’re wasting their time.
  2. Enthusiastic as hell: By projecting enthusiasm, you subliminally communicate that you have something exceptional to offer. Maintaining an upbeat and energetic demeanor will positively impact the prospect and position you as a positive influence in their life. (Personally, I believe you can come across as too enthusiastic)
  3. An expert in your field: Establish yourself as an authority figure and a force to be reckoned with. Convey your high level of competence and extensive knowledge right from the start, leaving no doubt that you are a world-class expert in your field. You have to sound and act like someone who can help the prospect fulfil their needs and desires. You can accomplish this by demonstrating mental speed and agility, fast decision-making, and a unique pace of delivery that immediately impresses the prospect and builds trust.

This is very similar to the approach of Oren Klaff in "Flip the Script"

Being perceived in the right way within those initial seconds is crucial, as it sets the tone for the entire sales process. If you fail to make a positive first impression, your chances of closing the deal diminish significantly.

Furthermore, throughout the sales conversation, it is important to demonstrate that you are worth listening to. This can be achieved by:

  1. Getting to the point quickly: Respect the prospect's time by efficiently conveying your message and addressing their needs without unnecessary delay.
  2. Providing a solution to their problem: Offer valuable insights and demonstrate how your product or service can effectively resolve their challenges.
  3. Being an asset over the long-term: Showcase your value by offering a unique perspective and extensive knowledge of the market, industry, product, prospect, and competitors. Establish yourself as a trusted advisor who can provide ongoing support and assistance.

Remember, the first four seconds are crucial for creating a positive perception, while the way you present yourself throughout the sales process determines your effectiveness in capturing the prospect's attention and closing the deal successfully.

NOTE: If you make a negative first impression, it takes eight subsequent positive impressions to erase that one negative first impression.

Chapter 4: Tonality and Body Language

How do you ensure a positive impression when you are on the phone and your prospects can't see you?
The answer lies in your tone of voice.

When communicating over the phone, your tone of voice becomes the primary mode of conveying your message and influencing perception.

Your tone of voice or how you say what you say has a profound impact on how what you say is perceived and, for that matter, how you are perceived; and not just during those all-important first four seconds, but throughout the entire conversation as well.

During face-to-face encounters, body language complements tonality to effectively deliver your point. 

These two modalities, tonality and body language, play significant roles in both conscious and unconscious communication.

In the Way of the Wolf, Jordan advises to create a sense of emotional certainty in your prospects, use enthusiasm that resonates through your tone of voice. This bottled enthusiasm, just beneath the surface, adds intensity to your words. By enunciating with clarity and emphasizing consonants, you project an unwavering belief in the value of the product you're selling.

It's important to avoid staying in one tonality for too long, as it can lead to boredom or habituation, causing the prospect to disengage. Varying your tone helps maintain engagement and keeps the prospect tuned in to your message.

Understanding the power of the unconscious mind is crucial. Your unconscious mind, which is 200 million times more potent than the conscious mind, not only regulates bodily functions but also stores memories. Whether in person or over the phone, the strategies you employ and the desired outcomes remain the same. You use words to influence the prospect's conscious mind, while tonality and body language have the power to influence their unconscious mind.

In summary, how you communicate, the way you say things, and the emotions you convey have a profound impact on how your message and you as a salesperson are perceived. Mastering tonality and utilizing bottled enthusiasm can help create the desired emotional certainty and influence the prospect's decision-making process.

Chapter 5: State Management

State management plays a vital role in your success, as highlighted by Jordan Belfort in The Way of the Wolf. 

You sell better if you block out negative thoughts and emotions and maintain a positive state of mind. When you're in an empowered state, such as certainty, you can access your internal resources and set yourself up for massive success. Conversely, being in a disempowered state hinders access to those resources and leads to failure.

To effectively manage your state, Belfort introduces Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), which views the human brain as a programmable computer capable of instant behavioral changes.

NLP's anchoring technique emphasizes proactive control over emotional states, rather than being reactive to external circumstances. It suggests that individuals can choose their emotional state at any given moment. Two core elements of NLP aid in state management:

  1. Focus: You have the power to direct your focus towards a specific direction, which then aligns your state with your chosen focus.
  2. Physiology: Your posture and overall physiology significantly impact how you feel. As Tony Robbins famously stated, "motion creates emotion."

Salespeople often aim to anchor a state of absolute certainty.
One common technique involves shouting "yes" while clapping their hands to establish a powerful anchor.

To live a more empowered life and excel in sales, the ability to trigger key emotional states is crucial. These four states, known as the four Cs, are certainty, clarity, confidence, and courage. Future pacing, visualizing yourself having already achieved a desired outcome, is a helpful technique.

In NLP, state management is distilled into the conscious control of two core elements: focus and physiology. By choosing what to focus on and adopting an intentional physiology, you can effectively manage your state and enhance your chances of success.

Chapter 6: A Surefire Formula for Managing Your State

NLP anchoring is a valuable technique that enables individuals to trigger a peak emotional state intentionally. However, mastering anchoring can be challenging due to two main vulnerabilities.

The first vulnerability lies in the intensity of the state at the precise moment the anchor is introduced. The more intense the state, the more effective the anchor becomes.

The second vulnerability relates to the choice of anchor. It should be extreme and unusual, maximizing its impact. Jordan Belfort provides a step-by-step guide to NLP anchoring, consisting of five basic steps:

Step #1: Choose a specific state to anchor.

Step #2: Determine your focus, directing your attention toward the desired state.

Step #3: Adjust your physiology, adopting a physical posture that aligns with the chosen state.

Step #4: Intensify the state by waiting until you naturally experience it before setting the anchor.

Step #5: Set the anchor at the peak of the state, creating a powerful association.

If you want to keep reading about Jordan's methods from The Way of the Wolf click on the link below
Way of the Wolf Summary