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Why Work? Just Relax? 

Published on May 17, 2020


Why make the effort?  Most businesses are closed or only partially opened.  The majority of your potential clients aren’t willing to do anything right now anyhow.  It doesn’t make any sense to break your back and get nothing in return.  Why don’t you just relax, take this time to sit back and enjoy the luxury of not having to work.

Oh my God . . . is that the most ridiculous way to think or what!?  Now’s the time to adapt, improvise, and overcome all the issues at hand. Be creative, think out of the box, develop new techniques and new ways to attract, convince, and sell your potential clients.  Now is the time to work harder than ever before, be enthusiastic and positive and eliminate that debilitating “I can’t do it” attitude.  You Can Do It and right now is exactly when you need to do it!

This isn’t the time to only go after the low hanging fruit, it’s the time to shake the tree.  When necessary climb up the trunk and twist those branches, or if it’s more efficient, cut the tree down.  Of course, you always have to be HONEST and ETHICAL, but that’s where your limitations end.  Be unique, clever in your thinking and actions. There’s no magic to this, no special method, no deep-seated mysterious secret.  It’s in your power to make things happen, in your own way.  So, why are you still sitting there, what are you waiting for?   


If you’re a salesperson or manager, which your probably are, and aren’t working with a coach (trainer) you’re not quite the salesperson/manager you could be!  For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him, or if you would prefer, call (818) 368-1308 or email butterfieldenterprise@gmail.comor visit And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Why Work? There’s No Business Out There! 

Published on April 30, 2020


Right now, April 30, 2020, because we’re dealing with the COVID-19 quarantine, it’s the perfect time for everyone in Sales and Management positions to take it easy and enjoy that well-earned rest you’ve been wanting.

OH NO!  Did my fingers really type that pathetic squalor?  My fingers should be embarrassed and ashamed of themselves.  I certainly hope my hands didn’t approve of what my fingers were doing.  Now isn’t the time to sit back and take it easy.  Now is the time to be creative, original, ambitious, aggressive, and forward thinking.  Of course, it’s much easier to say, “I guess while I’m stuck at home I might as well just hang out here and relax. After all, I can’t make business happen when there’s no business out there.”

Is that ridiculous or what!?  Even when business is booming you can’t make anything happen if you just sit there staring into oblivion and playing tiddlywinks by yourself.  Wake up at 8 AM every morning, have breakfast, go straight to work and use that productive brain of yours.  If you have a home office that’s exactly where you’ll go to work. If going to work means you’re sitting at the kitchen table or at the dinning room table or on the couch in the living room in front of the coffee table, so be it, that’s your work- station.  You weren’t working part-time before the Coronavirus, you’re not a part-time worker now.  

As a Manager you can be working on improving company systems, working on or developing an appraisal system, calling employees to check on them and possibly giving them doable assignments.  If you’re in Sales you should be calling past, existing, and potential clients.  Take advantage of this time to develop, innovate, improvise, and expand what you do and how you do it. 

Do you believe you can’t work because there are little feet running around the house?  I mean children, not rats.  Once again, adapt, be creative, innovative. Keep the children busy so you can also be busy . . . busy at what you should be doing . . . working. 

The Hall of Fame football coach, Vince Lombardi, said, "The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor."  

If you’re a salesperson or manager, which your probably are, and aren’t working with a coach (trainer) you’re not quite the salesperson/manager you could be!  For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him, or if you would prefer, call (818) 368-1308 or email butterfieldenterprise@gmail.comor visit And if you haven’t already done so, take a moment to join David’s Linkedin network.

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I Know! I Don't Have to Listen! 

Published on April 26, 2020


I can’t begin to count the vast amount of times over the past 47 years as a working consultant I’ve heard a salesperson say, “There was nothing I could do, it wasn’t in his budget.” That’s analogues to a biographical author saying, “I can’t write my memoirs because my pen ran out of ink.” 

More often than not your customer’s budget is little more than the “easy way out” for the customer who doesn’t want to divulge the real reason why he or she is attempting to avoid buying from you.  It’s simply another rationalization in the stash of objections that your clientele uses in deferring the sale.  Are they planning to buy from someone else, hoping you’ll lower your price (that’s you taking the easy way out), or is it that you haven’t convinced them your product or service will satisfy their needs? The latter normally happens when a so-called salesperson spends so much time talking, he or she negates the time in which they should have been listening.  When you don’t know your clients needs it’s mighty difficult to satisfy them.  If I were a betting man I’d put my money on the latter.

A salesperson’s job is to honestly and ethically convince their clients that their product or service will satisfy that particular client’s needs.  As strange as it might sound, you can’t determine a client’s needs by talking, it’s done by listening.  In a sales interaction with a professional salesperson, the client is doing the majority of talking.

The German poet, novelist, playwright, natural philosopher, and diplomat, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe,  stated,“If you wish to know the mind of a man, listen to his words.”


If you’re a salesperson or manager, which your probably are, and aren’t working with a coach (trainer) you’re not quite the salesperson/manager you could be!  For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him or if you would prefer, call (818) 368-1308 or email butterfieldenterprise@gmail.comor visit  And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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I'm Not a Salesperson! 

Published on April 24, 2020


I’m a business person, I’m not a salesperson! 

I’m a consultant, I’m not a salesperson! 

I’m a manager, I’m not a salesperson! 

I train people, I’m not a salesperson! 

And the list of “I’m not’s” goes on and on into infinitum.   Whether you’re guilty of asserting these rationalizations or guilty of accepting them as facts or truths, I’m sure it will be well worth your while to read a little further.

So many people, some salespeople included, sincerely believe selling only means forcing someone to purchase some thing or some concept they neither want nor need, but have been intimidated and forced into buying.  The old cliché, “They could sell ice cubes to Eskimos” is a classic example of the assumption we make that a salesperson will sell something to the sucker who neither needs nor wants it, but buys simply because he or she was forced, by a salesperson, to acquiesce.

Are there salespeople who exert sufficient pressure on a client to make that client capitulate and buy?  The answer is absolutely not!  Those are not true salespeople.  Do people who act like that and claim to be salespeople exist?  Yes, of course they do, and I sincerely apologize to you if you’ve had the misfortune to be assaulted by an insensitive uncaring conman or con-woman.  After all, con-artists come in both sexes.  Wearing a badge on your shirt pocket that says you’re a salesperson ‘a salesperson it does not make you.’

So then, who is a salesperson and what do salespeople really do?  A salesperson is a concerned individual who knows their product and/or service well enough to answer your every question.  A salesperson probes, asks questions, to determine what your needs and/or wants really are.  A salesperson is a listener, not a talker. Salespeople educate their clientele rather than pushing them to buy.  A client buys from a salesperson because that client had their needs satisfied, not because they were pressured into buying.  Now, please don’t get me wrong, quality salespeople are persuasive and intelligent conveyors of information without reluctance to deal with any client objections.  

What salespeople do is determine a client’s needs, than satisfy those needs by convincing the client that the salesperson’s product or service is what’s right for the client.  Honesty and integrity are primary requisites for a salesperson. Selling is convincing, and that means convincing the client to buy what will satisfy their needs.  Real salespeople don’t sell to merely satisfy their own needs, they strive to satisfy the needs of their clients and always with the hopeful objective of satisfying their own need to sell at the same time.  

Regardless of your job title, if you’re working toward satisfying the needs of your clients, employees, employers, partners, associates, friends, or family, you’re a salesperson.  If you’ve listened to them, determined their needs, and then convinced them to do what’s best for them . . . like it or not, you’re a salesperson. 


And, if you’re a salesperson, which your probably are, and aren’t working with a sales coach (trainer) you’re not quite the salesperson you could be!

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him or if you would prefer, call (818) 368-1308 or email butterfieldenterprise@gmail.comor visit  And if you haven’t already done so, you really need to join David Richman’s Linkedin network.

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Just Give Up! 

Published on December 24, 2019


Did your ‘completely loyal’ client who has been buying from you for years, out of nowhere, go to your competition?

Even though you really worked hard to make the sale, at the last minute did someone else sneek in and take the sale right out from under you?

Have you decided you’re going to chuck it in and do something else easier like becoming a Deep Sea Salvage Diver or maybe take a different view of people as a Proctologist? 

We’ve all lost that big sale we absolutely, positively knew was ours for the taking. And we’ve also all said to a client exactly what we shouldn’t have said at precisely the wrong moment.  Like it or not we’re bound to make that type of silly mistake again and again.  It won’t be with the same client nor on the same product or service, however, saying what you shouldn’t have said can happen to anyone and at anytime.  

Mistakes are made, problems appear, issues arise . . . the key to succeeding is in your willingness to forge forward, beyond the difficulties and disappointments, and quite simply never give up. 

Michael Jordan exemplified the ‘never give up’ concept; “I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life.  And that is why I succeed.”

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him or if you would prefer, call (818) 368-1308 or email  And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #1 Receptivity 

Published on August 7, 2019


Receptivity is the willingness to listen with an open mind.  However, just because your clients are receptive doesn't mean by any stretch of the imagination that they will buy from you or necessarily even agree with you.  When your clients are receptive it simply means they are willing to consider what you say without them being prejudice. Being receptive is being open-minded.  

If your clients are unwilling to listen to you with an open mind, you won't be able to convince them of anything.  And isn't that exactly what salespeople do, they convince?  If your clients aren't receptive, the simple fact of the matter is, you won't be able to convince them.  You know what that means.  You won't be able to sell them.  Without your clients receptivity there are no sales!

Okay, you got it.  Without receptivity you can't convince.  If you can't convince, you can't sell.  So no matter how you cut it, receptivity isn't just an integral part of sales, without receptivity there are no sales. Have you ever explained something specific to someone?  Then, the moment you finished your detailed and succinct explanation that person asked you a question that you just answered in your explanation. If that's ever happened to you, and it's happened to everyone I know, then you know exactly what it's like to lose someone's receptivity.  Unfortunately you won't always have your clients questions to indicate you've lost their receptivity.  Your clients aren't going to notify you about their lack of receptivity by sticking their fingers in their ears.  Well, some might, but most won't.  So here's a simple gauge for you to use.  On average a persons receptivity lasts between thirty to ninety seconds.  That means every thirty to ninety seconds you need to do something to confirm you have your client’s receptivity.

The technique of creating receptivity is called Spinning up Receptivity.  Okay, now let's define that.  Spinning up Receptivity is the interactional process used to initiate or reestablish receptivity.  All right, so what does that mean?  When you have reciprocal, or two-way, communication with your clients, you are normally guaranteed to have your client’s receptivity.  When you lose your client's receptivity you probe, ask a question, to reestablish their receptivity.  This technique is known as Spinning Up Receptivity. But it really just means you're using probes, questions, to maintain the involvement of your clients in the interaction between you and them.  Remember, you need your client’s receptivity to convince them, to sell them.  Spinning up Receptivity is the technique you'll use to acquire your client’s receptivity. You probe to Spin up Receptivity.  It's pretty simple when you stop to think about it, isn't it?  

You probe to better know your clients.  You probe to determine what your clients do understand and don't understand.  You probe to determine your client’s needs.  You probe to spin up their receptivity.  You probe, probe, probe.   Without probes you'll never be able to control interactions with your clients.  Never; did I say never?  That sounds awfully ominous, "Never be able to control interactions with your clients".  Ominous it is.  When you know how to use probes appropriately you can control any interaction.  Yes, you heard it right, any interaction.  Actually you read it, but pretend you heard it.  Don't spoil the magic of the moment. Lack probing skills and you'll not only relinquish control, but you may also alienate your clients, be incapable of determining your client’s needs, and find yourself at the bottom of the salesperson's score board.  In addition to probing being a salespersons finest tool, it's also the bases for all interactional and intellectual communication skills. Yeah, I guess you could say probes are kind of important.  


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #2 You Better Ask Questions

Published on August 10, 2019


Sorry for the sarcasm last time. I don't know what got into me, sorry.  All right then, let's get into what this is really all about, Probes.  I'm sure the first and foremost on your inquirery list is . . . what exactly are probes?  

Probes are questions, but not just any questions.  Probes are particular types of questions designed to achieve very specific goals.  Probes intentionally initiate,maintain and/or restart the flow of information.  

If you were passing someone in the corridor, and as you passed them you said, "Hi, how ya do'in?".  You then continued walking on past them without so much as turning your head, stopping to look back at them or slowing down to wait for their response.  In that case your question wouldn't have been a probe.  Probes are questions that illicit a response. The episode in the corridor was not intended to illicit a response.  It wasn't much more than a verbal nod and grunt.  In fact it was at best an informal and nearly unconscious greeting.  You weren't attempting to open a line of communication or begin any ongoing interaction.  You simply made your obligatory hi-sign to indicate you're neither an enemy nor someone to be feared.  You do this because you don't want to cause the potential aggressor passing you in the corridor to quickly turn and attack brandishing a knife, sword, spear, arrow, or stone.  

If you're wondering if using probes is the only way you can spin up receptivity the answer is no.  You could touch your clients, flail your arms around as though you'd fallen off the top of a eighty-two story building, change the volume of your speech from a soft whisper to a thunderous roar.  Keep in mind you'll need to apply these tactics every thirty to ninety seconds.  They're all valid methods to spin up receptivity.  I think you'll find probes to be a better choice because they allow you to continually learn, you don't have to be tactile, you won't have to strain your larynx, and you won't look like a flailing blithering idiot while spinning up receptivity.  As we go on you'll find probes afford you many other valuable benefits also.      

We'll be discussing, in a manner of speaking, and practicing five different probes; Open Probes, Closed Probes, Summary Probes, Leading Probes, and Pause.  With just these five individual probes you'll be able to persuade clients and obtain additional details from clients who didn't intend to give any information at all.  You'll stop irrelevant chatter from talkative clients who ramble on consistently, you'll create a level of trust from your clients in seconds rather than in days, and by asking the appropriate questions you'll help your clients to feel confidence in you and your abilities.  Yes, yes, I know it sounds hard to believe. But the fact is you'll discover just by probing correctly you'll be able to accomplish all of this, and at the exact same time you're attaining these seemingly monumental achievements you'll also be reaching your primary communicative goal, spinning up the receptivity of your clients.  Wow, you'll be controlling the interaction with your clients while you're spinning up their receptivity.  You know, you could say that's analogous to having Christmas, Chanukah your twenty-first birthday celebration, all at the exact same time.  Of course there's no party with all of your friends and family, there aren't any strings of bright flickering lights all around you, no colorful festive decorations hanging from the walls, no beautifully lit Christmas tree standing in the middle of your living room, there won't be the fun-filled excitement of unwrapping each of your presents . . . but you get the general idea.  All right then, we'll start with the probes most commonly used.  And those are Open Probes.


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #3 Open Probes

Published on August 13, 2019


If you're curious about something you're probably going to create a question in your mind in the form of an open probe.  Why is that you ask?  Well, it's because we normally think in very direct and often simplistic terms.  As an example, you see your nextdoor neighbor sitting on her roof.  You might be thinking that's a very unusual thing to do, and you're wondering why she's sitting up there.  The simplest and most direct question would be, "Why are you sitting on your roof?".  The question, or probe, is in direct response to what you were thinking. You wanted to know why, so you asked why.  Most open probes are really just that simple.  

Open probes place no limit on the length or content of the response.  

So, exactly what does that mean.  Open probes don't instruct your clients to respond to you with a particular answer or in a specific manner.  "Why are you sitting on your roof?"sounds pretty specific, doesn't it?  The probe itself really just asks why.  It isn't instructing your neighbor in how to respond.  The open probe is merely asking a question. An open probe doesn't require the person responding to answer with a two-word response, or a ten-word response, or a thousand-word response.  Open probes put no limit on the length of the response.  In this example of an open probe your neighbor isn't being told to respond by saying, "Because it's too hot in my bedroom", or, "Because my favorite chair is broken, or, "Because I want to look at my front yard and my backyard at the same time."  Open probes don't give a choice of responses.  It's an open probe because it asks without telling your client how to respond.  Open probes place no limit on the length or content of the response. Even when you assume, or expect, you'll receive a "Yes" or "No" response, it's still an open probe as long as you haven't told your client to respond specifically with a "Yes" or "No" answer.

Open probes can be very broad or quite narrow.  A broad open probe might be, "What's been happening?", or, "How's business?"  Both of these open probes allow your clients to respond in any way they chose.  You might receive a one-word response or a lengthy story.  A narrow open probe would be "How many have you sold?", or, "Did you turn the lights on?"  Those are specific questions to which a one or two word response would normally be sufficient.  But because it's an open probe it doesn't matter that you expect a limited response, you may still receive an oratory as an answer. When you want as much information as you can acquire from your client use broad open probes.  When you're looking for a more limited response use narrow open probes.  

Examples of open probes;   

*   When did you first notice this problem?                            

*   When will you be available?              

*   Did you look at our warranty?              

*   Are you ready to get started?

You need to practice using open probes.  Osmosis works wonderfully for plants.  They absorb, become green, they bloom, and they grow.  But unfortunately there's a good chance you're not going to have it quite that easy.  You'll need to practice if you really want to absorb the art of probing.  Of course the upside of learning by practicing versus osmosis is you don't have to worry about aphides. 

Until you read about the next probe use as many open probes as possible.  When listening to people or media identify the open probes you hear.  Practice, practice, practice!   


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #4 Closed Probes

Published on August 16, 2019


There are some salespeople who might assume closed probes are the most commonly used of the five we'll discuss.  Statistically those salespeople are wrong.  But their assumption is reasonable.  Some people, salespeople actually are people, have a tendency to use more closed probes than open probes.  The reasons why different individuals use different probes vary widely, suffice it to say, open probes and closed probes are the most frequently used probes.  You'll find that any question that you can ask as an open probe can also be asked as a closed probe.  I know, I know, you're getting good and tired of waiting for me to tell you the difference between the two probes.  Okay, here it comes.   

Open probes place no limiton the length or content of the response.  Closed probeslimit the length and content of the response. Open probes don't instruct your clients how to respond, Closed probes do.  Closed probes instruct your clients to respond within specific limitations.  Closed probes give your clients a choice, or option, between two alternatives.  Your clients can pick this or that, up or down, in or out, front or back, top or bottom.  Closed probes aren't allowing your clients with the option to come up with there own response.  Closed probes instruct your clients on how you want them to respond.  "What did you do today?"is an open probe, and it allows your clients to respond in any way they chose.  "Did you go directly to your office this morning orstop at the post office first?"is a closed probe because it instructs your clients to respond in one way orthe other.  Because your clients are given two choices the probe isn't open, it's closed. The key to communication is simplicity itself.  Give your clients two choices when using closed probes.  Don't ask, "Would you rather have your walls painted periwinkle or chartreuse or fuchsia or mauve or orange?"  Keep it simple and offer only two options.  Remember, the rule with closed probes is that closed probes always have an or within the questions . . . one or only, please. 

Examples of closed probes;   

*  Is this something have you experienced this problem before?                 


*  I have time at 10 AM, or would 2 PM be better for you?            


*  Did you think about the standard warranty or would you rather have the extended option?                   


*  Are you ready to get started now or do you still have questions for me?

Let me ask you one easily answered question.  Are these two types of probes beginning to make a good deal more sense to you now or do you feel they're still maybe somewhat confusing?

It really doesn't matter how you decided to respond.  The one absolute here is that the question you responded to was a closed probe.  In simple terms, open probes are open probes whether you receive a one-word response from your clients or a medium sized novella.  Closed probes are exactly the same, in that they're closed probes whether your clients opt to respond with one of the choices you've offered them or they decide to say something so completely off-the-wall that you can't understand how it had anything whatsoever to link it to your original question.  Open probes are open probes and closed probes are closed probes regardless of how your clients respond to them. 

At nearly every workshop I teach where probes are the main focus, one concern seems to be on everyone’s mind.  "What if my client responds with something other than the two choices I gave them in my closed probe?  Is it still a closed probe?"  My response strangely enough is always the same. "If they answer with a different response, you gained additional information.  That's always good.  A closed probe is a closed probe no matter how they respond."  

Okay, today you’re going to use as many closed probes as possible. When listening to people or media identify the closed probes you hear.  Tomorrow you’ll do the same with open probes.  The next day closed probes and so on and so forth. Concentrate on just one type of probe per day and alternate the probes from day to day.  Practice, practice, practice!  Then practice some more!   


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #5 Open Probes versus Closed probes

Published on August 19, 2019


You've read about open probes and closed probes.  You've been practicing open probes on alternate days and you've done exactly the same with closed probes.  Don't you feel proud of yourself?  You really should.  And you know what?  You'll feel even more proud when you learn with whom you should be using open probes versus closed probes.  So, why don’t we begin with open probes?  Oh my goodness, that was an open probe.  I’m getting pretty good at this.

You use Open probes with clients who interact with you in a clear and succinct manner, where there's a good flow of information. Your clients show no fear of speaking and in general respond to you in complete sentences rather than using only a single word to answer your probes.  They don't talk on and on until the original topic has been totally obscured by their ramblings.  Don't you just hate it when someone rambles on forever?  Your clients aren't jabbering relentlessly or meandering from subject to subject, nor are they responding with such brevity that you have no idea what's meant by the limited response you were given.  

Open probes are used when the level of communication between you and your clients is easy, responsive, forthcoming, and the overall flow of information is neither labored nor hampered.  Hopefully the majority of your interactions will flow well enough to seemingly allow for a predominance of open probes. Whether your open probes will be primarily broad, narrow, or a combination of the two will be dependent on how much you want to know and what depth into your client you chose to penetrate.  

So, when should you be usingclosed probesor should you be using them at all?  There, I did it again . . . that was a closed probe.  Okay, because closed probes leave your clients with only two options, they will nearly always feel obligated to chose at least one.  Closed probes are also known as obligatory probes.  They obligate you clients to make a choice and respond.  

When your clients aren't responding with sufficient information closed probes will force them to pick one response or the other and begin to participate in the interaction.  In other words, your clients will be forced into speaking.  Without delving into the deep dark psychological past of each individual client, let's just say some people are fear motivated. To put that into simpler terms, they don't trust salespeople.  That's you remember?  Because of their fear, lack of trust, they're fearful of releasing too much information to you.  They know they tell you too much about themselves or what they believe they need you'll take advantage of them.  Fear motivated people don't think you'll take advantage of them . . . they know you’ll take advantage of them.  These are the clients who clam-up and refuse to respond with any statement of sustenance.  They'll offer as little information as they possibly can. A way to minimize their fear is to force them to speak.  When they're talking they have a greater tendency to feel safe or at least safer. They have no problem talking to their friends and people they trust.  But until you can entice them to begin talking they won't and they don’t trust you.  Closed probes will force them to speak, and force at least some of the fear to dissipate. 

Of course some clients are the exact opposite, they talk more than is necessary; giving you an over abundance of inconsequential information. Use closed probes to aid your clients with their inability to focus.  Instead of just standing there listening to your client’s thirty-seven minute dissertation on the overwhelming difficulties of choosing the correct model, you might wait for a pause in their monolog and ask,"Are you not quite sure of which model would be best for you to choose oris there something else bothering you?",or you might say, "Does this model seem overly complicated for your immediate needs or is the color the issue?"  Closed probes force your clients to focus.

When your clients are indecisive, using closed probes helps in directing them to either one conclusionorthe another.  If your clients say, "I'm sorry I just can't buy this now", your closed probe might be,"Is it that you don't have the money with you ordo you feel this particular model isn't really for you?" You can't know how to respond to your any client’s objections until your client focuses and you understand exactly what is the real issue.  That's the only way you're going to know what their true objection is. Closed probes force non-talkers to communicate, over-talkers to lessen their rhetoric, and the indecisive to focus.


You use Open probes with clients who interact with you in a clear and succinct manner, where there's a good flow of information.

You use Closed probes with clients who talk too much, talk too little, or are indecisive.

Stay tuned! There’s more to come!   


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #6 Summary Probes

Published on August 24, 2019


Both open and closed probes are ubiquitous and consequently they've become so very commonplace that we hardly recognize them when they're being used even by ourselves.  Although used not nearly as often summary probes are also rarely recognized, but for a completely different reason.  You'll intentionally ask open and closed probes to educate yourself or someone else.  And strangely enough, even before you realized the differences between open and closed probes you still intentionally used them.  The same is not true for the majority of salespeople when it comes to using summary probes.  Summary probes are most often used simply because of your surprise or your curiosity or your disbelief.  Your current use of summary probes is neither planned nor intentional.  They just seem to happen.  I know, that’s sounds really weird.  Let me explain.  

After spending a grueling one-hour and thirty-seven minutes more than what should have been necessary your client finally says, "I don't think I really need this!"  Out of total bewilderment and shock you instinctively utter, "You don't think you really need this?"  Oh my goodness, you used a summary probe without having the slightest idea of what you just did.   

Summary Probes restate, in question form, what you just heard.  That's right, you repeat back exactly what your client just said.  I know, you're afraid your clients will think you're mocking them or making fun of them by repeating back what was just said. You're worried that even worse than thinking you're mocking them they might simply think you're a blithering idiot.  You don't have to worry one little bit. When summary probes are executed correctly your clients won't even realize you've asked them a question. Your clients won't hear the question mark at the end of your sentence.  All your clients will hear is you conversing with them. That's the primary reason why your clients immediately respond with additional information on the topic you just questioned.  Your clients don't feel as though they're answering a question, it's more as though they're merely continuing their original thought in an effort to help you better understand.  You're receiving additional information and your clients don't realize they're offering it to you even though you just asked them for it.  In other words, the fact that you actually asked a question wasn't recognized.  To your clients your question sounded like a continuance of their statement. They'll have an underlying feeling that they may not have been completely clear and they'll need to further clarify their previous statement.  It's important to remember that you must always sound genuinely sincere when using summary probes.  Should you sound insincere . . . well, I guess then your initial fears about summary probes may come to fruition, your clients just might think you really are a blithering idiot. 

In addition to being an excellent method of obtaining more in-depth information from your clients summary probes also act as behavioral modifiers. That simply means summary probes can modify, or change, your client’s behavior.  Wow, isn't that absolutely amazing?  By using summary probes correctly you can actually change your client’s behavior.  

Even the most incredulous of you have to admit that by asking a question you're able to change someone's behavior is pretty impressive.  Here's how it works.  When you repeat back the exact words your clients voiced it indicates to them, at a subliminal level, that you really listened to them. Listening is one of the most sincere indicators of concern, or caring, for your clients.  Because you repeated your clients exact words you sound as though you're the same as your clients.  You sound like them.  Again, it has a subliminal affect on your clients.  As far as your clients are concerned you're just like them.  These subliminal feelings create a sense of camaraderie in your clients.  Without knowing how or when or why it happened, your clients feel you're their friend.  There’s something about you they like and they probably won’t have the foggiest idea what it is, but they like you nevertheless.  Summary probes create camaraderie.  

Should you use summary probes strictly because they create camaraderie? No! I mean yes.  I mean not really.  The creation of camaraderie is a benefit of summary probes, but not their primary function.  Summary probes verify your understanding of what you just heard.  When your client said, "I don't think I really need this", did your client mean that the sale and your interaction with them had ended?  Did your client mean he or she hadn't been convinced by you yet?  Could what your client said have meant that another product would fit their needs better or did what was meant by your client mean something else entirely?  Summary probes encourage your clients to give you additional information on the same topic.  By asking, "You don't think you really need this?" you're more than likely going to uncover your client’s exact meaning.

Be sure not to embellish what your clients say.  Never begin your summary probe with, "So you mean . . .", or, "What you're really saying is . . .", and then continue by repeating exactly what your client said.  If you add anything to your client’s statement you're no longer saying exactly what your client said the way your client said it.  That seemingly inconsequential addition of just a few little words can nullify your summary probes ultimate value as a behavioral modifier.  Of course you need to change words such as "I's"to "You's"and "I'm'sto You'r's"and anything else that might make your sentence sound a bit incongruous or possibly just down right silly.  On occasion, especially when you're dealing with that complicated, exceptionally long, or conceptually difficult sentence, you may find it necessary to eliminate a portion of your client’s statement in order to keep your summary probe easily understandable.  As an example, if your clients said, "We intend to grow and enlarge First Amalgamated Reprographic Technology Systems vigorously through international multi-lateral expansion." Holly cow, if that wasn't a monstrous mouthful I don't know what would be.  Instead of saying all that you might opt to respond with, "You intend to grow and enlarge vigorously through international multi-lateral expansion?", or instead you could respond with, "You intend to grow and enlarge First Amalgamated Reprographic Technology Systems vigorously?"  Keep in mind, the more exact your summary probe is in relation to your client’s statement the better your summary probe is.

Summary probes can be stated with the emphasis on any portion of the sentence. Assuming you wanted to more specific details on exactly who wants to see the company's growth take place, you might emphasize "You"; "Youintend to grow and enlarge First Amalgamated Reprographic Technology Systems vigorously?"  If you wanted additional information on why they want to grow the company, you might emphasize "grow and enlarge"; "You intend to grow and enlargeFirst Amalgamated Reprographic Technology Systems?"  You're not only able to verify your understanding of what was said in general with summary probes, but summary probes also allow you to easily segregate and specify the exact portion of your client’s sentence that you want additional information or specificity about.  Emphasize areas where you want enhanced information, modify the length of your client’s statements when necessary, and never, under any circumstances, embellish what your client said.        


The reasons why completely escape me, but there are certain salespeople that take to summary probes naturally.  It's as though they've been using them all their lives.  Summary probes flow easily over their lips and fall flawlessly into the ears of their waiting clients.  And of course there are other similarly talented salespeople who are much less comfortable using summary probes.  Without rhyme or reason it's just the way things are. You know what?  It really doesn't matter which of these categories you happen to fit into.  Whether you find summary probes flow from you naturally or feel terribly uncomfortable using them, summary probes are an absolutely invaluable tool. Like it or not, you'll need to practiced them until they flow so smoothly out of you that no one could possibly detect the technique you're using.

Summary Probes restate, in question form, what you just heard.  They verify your understanding of what was said.

Summary probes are first and foremost verifiers.  They help you to better understand your clients and what they're saying.  At the same time summary probes are behavioral modifiers.  They create camaraderie.

Examples of summary probes;     

w Your Client:   "I've been having this problem for a long time."     


w Salesperson:  "You've been having this problem for a long time?"

w Your Client:   "I don't know when I'll be available."                

w Salesperson:  "You don't know when you'll be available?"   

w Your Client:   "I'm not sure I need an extended warranty."      


w Salesperson:  "You're not sure you need an extended warranty?"   


w Your Client:   "I just have a couple of questions."        

w Salesperson:  "You just have a couple of questions?"    

Take a moment, maybe a few moments, and stand in front of a full-length mirror. Think about what a client might say to you then verbalize the respondent summary probe.  Remember to sound sincere.  Sounding sincere is extremely important.  Place emphasis on that portion or word of the summary probe where you feel you might want additional information.  Stay focused on the mirror and examine how you look and sound while using summary probes.  Enjoy yourself, but refrain from sticking out your tongue.

Alright, It’s time to begin practicing.  For the remainder of today you’re going to use as many summary probes as possible.  When listening to people or media identify the summary probes you hear. Tomorrow you’ll do the same with open probes.  The next day with closed probes and then back to summary probes.  Concentrate on just one type of probe per day and alternate the probes from day to day.  Practice, practice, practice!  Then practice some more!    


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #7 Leading Probes

Published on August 26, 2019


How did your summary probe practice go?  I'm sure you're fast on your way to becoming a summary probe aficionado.  Good for you. Are you ready to tackle leading probes now?  Good, I thought so.

Much the same as summary probes, leading probes are verifiers.  They're also behavioral modifiers.  Even though there are similarities leading probes are quite different from summary probes.  

Leading probes are statements in question form, whereas summary probes are questions that restate what you’ve heard.  Because they are statements leading probes must always be stated (delivered) with authority and confidence.  When you use summary probes you want your clients to primarily perceive you as being sincere.  However, your client’s perception of you when you're executing leading probes should be one of assurance, authoritativeness, dominance, self-confidence, and strength.  Rather than sounding as though they're being asked, leading probes sound much closer to you telling your clients the question.  That sounds a little innocuous, doesn't it? Leading probes seem much more like statements than questions.  That's primarily because of the forcefulness confidence with which you present every leading probe.     


Leading probes aren't to be used just at any old time, whenever you feel like it. Leading Probes are used based on your pre-drawn conclusion of what you believe to be your client’s actual meaning, not merely what your client’s words may have indicated. Pre-drawn conclusions are not based solely on what is said, but on what is meant by what is said.  I hope that wasn't as confusing to you as it sounded to me.  Don't think of pre-drawn conclusions as being the same as assumptions.  You see, without prior knowledge of the topic at hand you can still easily formulate an assumption.  However, a pre-drawn conclusion must be based on at least a modicum of acquired evidence, factual or not.  Because you've been observing and listening to your clients with an open mind you've gleaned a sufficient amount of information to feel completely confident in the pre-drawn conclusion you've developed.  That level of confidence translates into the authoritative strength needed to execute a flawless leading probe.  A client might say, "I don't know if I'm ready to do this yet".  But what they really mean is it costs too much.  You heard exactly what your client said, but your well founded pre-drawn conclusion tells you that the real issue here is cost.  Your leading probe stated confidently might be,"It's really the cost that's bothering you Mr. Rhee, isn't it?"  The last two words of the sentence,"isn't it?" should be said less as a question and more as a statement of fact.  You're telling your client the probe, not asking your client.  You musthave a pre-drawn conclusion in order to create a leading Probe.  Without a pre-drawn conclusion your leading probe could quite easily become manipulative. Your job is to satisfy your client’s needs, not to manipulate your client into buying something or doing something they neither want nor need. 

Your client’s response to your leading probe is what verifies your pre-drawn conclusion.  When you say, "It's really the cost that's bothering you Mr. Rhee, isn't it?"and your client immediately responds with, "Yeah, I’m concerned whether I can afford this with my wife being out of work right now."  Okay, your pre-drawn conclusion has been verified.  Not only was your pre-drawn conclusion verified, but you received additional information about your client's monetary situation. Without your use of a leading probe you might not have otherwise been privy to that information.  Because leading probes sound more like statements than questions your client’s tendency is to not only respond to your query but to retort with additional information to justify their initial statement. How wonderful, you verify your pre-drawn conclusion and obtain additional information all at the same time. Probes are pretty darn terrific, aren't they?  That’s a leading probe.   

Leading Probes are also behavioral modifiers.  They create trust and confidence.  Leading probes do this two different ways.  Because you're speaking authoritatively with strength and self-confidence your clients instinctively feels a sense of confidence in you. It's difficult not to feel confident about someone who sounds totally confident in himself or herself. That's why politicians rarely, if ever, say, "I think it will", or, "Maybe it might."  Instead they say, "It will", and, "I'm confident about this."  Politicians know that to create confidence you must act confident. It's because of the authority and self-assurance in your voice and the strength of your mannerisms that leading probes create confidence. 


So, from where does the trust come?  Initially your client’s trust in you and what you say comes from your pre-drawn conclusion.  Allow me to explain.  Your leading probe wasn't based on an assumption, a thought, a mere guess. Your pre-drawn conclusion was based on your careful observations, your in-depth listening, and not just on a wild guess or what you hoped would happen.  When you stated your leading probe you voiced it with self-assurance and authority.  You made it quite obvious that you weren't guessing or asking.  It was easy for you to sound confident because you had enough recently acquired information about your client and his or her needs to confidently state your leading probe.  You honestly believed you were one hundred percent correct in your pre-draw conclusion.  When your client immediately agreed with you, "Yeah, I’m concerned whether I can afford this with my wife being out of work right now", he was telling you that he knew you really understood him, understood him possibly even better than he understood himself at that moment.  Your understanding of what Mr. Rhee meant, not just what he said, is what convinced your client that he should trust you.  At a subliminal level your client was thinking, this salesperson really understands me, this is a salesperson I can trust.

Once again my deep-seated paranoia is surging to the forefront, so bare with me, please.  I just need to make absolutely sure that I've impressed upon you the importance of telling your leading probes rather than simply asking them.  Leading probes are presented in a firm and forceful voice. Your body, hand, and head movements should also indicate that exact same level of confidence, firmness and forceful expression.  If someone wasn't listening closely they might not even recognize that you actually asked a question.  They might think that you were telling someone something, not asking. Sorry for belaboring the point, but without a strong intent in your voice your leading probes will end up being no more than open probes.  That means you won't be creating confidence, you won't be creating trust, and at best you'll only receive a simple "yes" or "no" response from your client.  It's all in the inflections in your voice and your mannerisms.  

Examples of Leading probes;   

* "Getting this fixed is really important to you, isn't it?"           

* "Friday mornings are usually the best for you, aren't they?"   

* "You're really not comfortable without additional protection, are you?"  

* "We've laid all your concerns to rest, haven't we?"        

You could probably use one more example of a Leading probe, couldn't you? I guess that would be two more examples if we count the one I just used, wouldn't it?  I mean three if we count that last one.   

"You're going to be terrific with all the probes, aren't you?"        All right, that's enough.  That's more than enough.  It’s time to begin practicing.  You know it'll be easy, don't you?  Sorry, I seem to have been taken over by the Leading probe craze, haven't I?  Oops, it happened again, didn't it?


For the remainder of today you’re going to use as many leading probes as possible.  When listening to people or media identify the leading probes you hear.  Tomorrow you’ll do the same with open probes, the next day with closed probes, then summary probes and then right back to leading probes again.  Concentrate on just one type of probe per day and alternate the probes from day to day.  Practice, practice, practice!  Then practice some more!   


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Step #8 Pause

Published on August 29, 2019


Hooray for you!  You've already learned about and practiced four different probes;

* OPEN probes place no limit on the length or content of the response.

* CLOSED probes limit the length and content of the response.

* SUMMARY probes restate, in question form, what you just heard.

* LEADING probes are statements in question form.

There's just one more probe to go, and although it is considered by many topflight professional negotiators as the most valuable of all the probes you might not have even realized it actually is a probe.  Why, you ask?  It’s primarily because this probe doesn't have a question mark (?) at the end.  I know, I know, you're thinking how can you have a probe, a question, without a question mark at the end?  And your probably also thinking yours-truly has finally popped his pomegranate, pushed over his piñata, and peeled his persimmon.  

Well, there's a very good chance you're right . . . but there's still no question mark at the end of this probe.  You know why?  It's because this probe isn’t any part of a sentence, and therefore it doesn't have a question mark at the end.  There isn't really any end.  Your fifth probe is a Pause.  And of course you’re asking, so why is a Pause considered a probe?  Just hang in there for a moment and I'll explain.  To Pause is to be silent.  When you're being completely silent it forces your client to become vocal.  And what do the other four probes do?  They force your client to say something, become vocal.  See, it's all starting to make sense now, isn't it?  Oops, I’m back on those leading probes again.  

When you Pause, your silence initiates your client’s unplanned response. Just imagine you're standing in front of your client.  Are you imagining?  They're not saying anything and you're not saying anything.  You're just standing there staring at one another. I'm sure you know exactly what it's like being confronted with one of those uncomfortable silent moments. 


The blank space above was me pausing, being silent.  It was pretty uncomfortable, wasn't it?  Too many salespeople become so uncomfortable with silence that without realizing it they'll say anything to break the silence.  They fill every quiet moment between their client and themselves with some form of chatter. Consider this, if you, the salesperson, are the one who's talking, then your client isn't.  How are you supposed to learn anything about your client when the person talking is you?  Ponder this for a moment; you learn nothing when you’re the one who is talking!  

When you're silent you force your clients to speak.  You'll often see discomfort in the face and actions of your clients.  Looking around, hanging one's head, desperately avoiding eye contact, shuffling feet, uneasy hand movements, body shifting, and repetitive motions are all typical actions your clients will exhibit when you pause.  Your client willspeak.  What's important when you pause is that you don't show any signs of discomfort.  Count on it, your clients will speak.

Are you worried that your clients may feel some discomfort and because of that they'll like you less?  That's a fear I hear quite often from salespeople.  "If I pause my client will feel ticked off and kick me out of his office".  Sorry, that's just not the way it works.  There are no negative residual feelings from a pause. When your clients respond they feel relief.  Responding to a pause is what eliminates their discomfort.  Your clients won't hold any negative feelings against you because they were forced to respond.  In fact, rather than considering the discomfort portion of a pause as a potential negative factor, you should be looking at it as a didactic experience. Your clients have just been trained to respond to your probes . . . or feel uncomfortable if they don't. Whenever you feel your clients are unlikely to interact, pause.  This will force interaction from them.  

There's more to pausing than just forcing your clients to verbalize their thoughts.  Pausing is a matter of courtesy.  Every so often you'll come across individuals who have a tendency to ponder extensively over any question posed of them.  Their responses come more slowly than you'd expect.  That is of course, unless you don't give them the time to respond.  In that case their responses don't come at all.  On occasion, as people age, they may tend to respond a little more slowly.  In both of these cases, courtesy dictates that after you've asked a question, probed, you must always pause.  There's another important point here.  It's one more point of courtesy, and it's one I mentioned earlier.  No matter how important you feel what you have to say may be, pause until your client has finished speaking.  You always have a good feeling about yourself when you're being well mannered and courteous.  Not to mention your clients will respect you for your courtesy and proper manners.  I'm going to put courtesy aside for one moment.  Please note, that in no way diminished the importance that courtesy plays in communication, or in sales in general.  

There's one factor that up to this point has really gone unmentioned. That's your attitude as a professional salesperson and as a professional communicator.  Your attitude, your approach, and your overall behaviors determine the perception you'll create for your clients.  And although your appearance, mannerisms, and behaviors are extremely important, without the appropriate attitude everything you do will seem incongruous in the eyes of your clients.  

Nowhere else is the blending of your attitude, mannerisms, and behaviors more evident than in your probing skills, and especially in your use of pause. When you pause your attitude should be, "I deserve, and moreover, demand a response to my probe. And I'll wait indefinitely if necessary!"  

Okay now, don't snatch up your Star Wars Light Saber and prepare to attack poor helpless little me.  Let's temper you're "demanding a response" with a modicum of humility, consideration, and of course courtesy.  Yes, you expect and demand a response, however, you do that gently and with warmth. Don't stand there, after probing, with furrowed brows and an intimidating look on your face as though their immediate demise is directly at hand.  Wait for the response after your probe as the warm, friendly, and courteous salesperson you've been throughout the entire sales interaction. Communicating isn't a gift you posses, it's a learned skill.  Being a quality communicator only comes with diligent practice and of course, the right attitude.

We've all heard of the Golden Rule.  Okay, okay, so you know someone who hasn't heard of the Golden Rule,or probably anything else as far as that's concerned, but aside from that one particular person, everybody's heard of the Golden Rule.  I'll bet there are some of you who even practice the Golden Rule.  However, as strange as it may seem there's actually anotherGolden Rule.  It's the Golden Rule of Communication.  Every time you Probe . . . Pause.  It's a matter of affording your client the courtesy, and the opportunity, to respond.  It's also a matter of you receiving the response you expect and deserve.  Every time you Probe . . . Pause.

When you probe, two or three times in a row without giving your clients the opportunity to respond you rarely receive an answer to all of your probes. In fact you may not receive a response to any of them.  On occasion you'll find clients who'll respond to the one probe you asked that they want to answer. They'll completely ignore the remainder of your probes. Probing multiple times without allowing your clients the opportunity to respond is a manipulative technique use by unscrupulous salespeople.  They'd rather confuse their clients then educate them.  Those type of salespeople aren't interested in what the client wants they're only interested in selling what they want.  If you've ever felt as though you were being pushed around, made to appear incompetent, not listened to, and totally unappreciated by a salesperson . . . then you've come across the type of salesperson you definitely don't want to emulate.  You, on the other hand, are a professional salesperson. You're interested in listening to and satisfying all of your clientele.  It's professional salespeople like you that make me proud to say . . .  I'm a salesperson!  


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Be The Salesperson You Want To Be!

Published on August 5, 2019


It's obvious that you're a good listener.  You consistently make sure that you understand everything your clients say.  You also take pride in knowing exactly what your clients mean by what they say. Because of that you don't ever have to worry about misunderstanding or misinterpreting anything your clients say.  You're much too in tuned to your clients to just guess at what they might be intimating.  And you always verify what you hear your clients say.  You do that because you want to eliminate the possibility of any errors that could easily be caused by a misunderstanding.  You feel it's your responsibility to make absolutely sure you're never in a position where you might end up saying, "I thought that's what my client meant."  You verify everything your clients say so you'll never have to just "guess at what they were trying to say."  You know perfectly well that verifying what you heard your client say allows you to avoid the chance of miscommunication.  It allows you to feel completely confident that you understand what your client said, as well as what he or she actually meant.

Was I one hundred percent correct about you, wasn’t I?  Or is it possible I was being just a tad optimistic?  Do you really ask a sufficient amount of questions to verify your understanding of your clients say and mean?  Do you feel confident that you know exactly what your clients meant by what they said or do you sometimes feel as though your head is buried below the sand while your client is speaking?

For the most part salespeople have only a partial understanding of what their clients really need.  Obviously that doesn’t mean all salespeople.  Unfortunately it is the vast majority of them.  Are you a part of that vast majority?  Have no fear, by the time you're done reading the next eight installments of this little exposé you'll be part of the minority of salespeople.  You'll understand your clients, quite possibly, better than they understand themselves.  Oh yeah, I forgot something.  Reading this exposé isn't enough.  You must practice the techniques you'll learn. I'd like to be able to say, "Read about these techniques and you'll control every interaction you have.  You'll be able to pull information from anyone you encounter.  You'll understand exactly what your clients really mean".  I'd like to say that, but I can't.  You'll learn how to do all of that, but you must practice to become proficient.  Practice and you'll be the professional salesperson all professionals strive to be and you’ll also be the salesperson everyone will want to emulate.  Be looking for Step #1 in two days. 


For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises, Inc. take a moment to review David’s Linkedin Profile and read what his clients have to say about him.  If you would prefer speaking directly to David, call (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Why Learn? Why Trust?

Published on August 5, 2019


To my way of thinking there is nothing as admirable as someone who trusts and is open to listen and learn and continually grow. 

For a few years I have been offering a one-time one-hour complimentary consultation, and I specify there will be no sales pitch.  Too often I hear, “Did you read my Linkedin profile and see the degrees I hold (or the experience I have)?” Have we as a society become so pretentious that we truly believe there is nothing more we can learn? Or, is it a matter of such distrust in our fellow man that we find it impossible to accept that someone would actually share their knowledge with us and not demand compensation of some type?    

“I am Still learning” Was said by Michalangelo at 87 years of age.

“The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.” Ernest Hemingway

“Trust, but verify.” Ronald Reagan

I just received the following message from a young man (pictured above) who is to definitely be admired. I met Eric only once . . . because he wanted to learn and because he trusted.

Hi David, I don't know if you remember me, but I came to your office around 2 years ago for the pro-bono consultation. Looking back, you taught me some very important and beneficial things that I still use and keep in mind to this day(I actually used that little trick you taught me about writing things on the back of my business card today). Just wanted to see how you're doing, and most importantly thank you from the bottom of my heart for your generosity. - Eric Biglari

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or call (818) 368-1308 or email Read what his past clients have to say about him. And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Not A One Trick Pony

Published on May 1, 2018


On Friday, April 27th, David Richman lectured at East Los Angeles College. He wasn’t there to teach the students, David was there to train the Instructors and Administrators. 

You probably already know David Richman has trained Realtors to consistently reach and surpass their goals, but did you know he also trained Plumbers, Attorneys, Contractors, Financial Advisors, Automotive Salespeople, Insurance Professionals, Owners of Sign companies, Accountants, Escrow Departments, and the list goes on and on. When it comes to Sales or Management you simply won’t find a better Trainer or Consultant than David Richman of Butterfield Enterprises.  

Over his 45 year career David has trained more people to become successful, regardless of their job title, than you can possibly imagine. So, the question you should be asking yourself, Why isn’t David training me?

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or (818) 368-1308 or email Read what his past clients have to say about him. And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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I Don’t Want to be Pushy!

Published on April 10, 2018


After close to 45 years of training salespeople to be successful and consistent do you really believe I would be arrested if I smacked the next salesperson that said, “I don’t want to be pushy?”

What does ‘being pushy’ mean anyhow? Too many otherwise well trained salespeople feel being pushy begins when you ask your client to buy. Of course that is the extreme, other salespeople don’t fold until the client has an objection. Then they run for the hills screaming, “I knew I shouldn’t have pushed them, now they’ll never speak to me again.”

Selling is convincing. I’m afraid this isn’t debatable. The fact is selling is convincing. When you sell you convince someone to do something. If your wife says, “Let’s have Chinese for dinner” and you respond with, “I feel more like Italian.” When you end up at Wong’s it’s pretty obvious your wife is the salesperson. If you’re seated at Guido’s, you can claim the title. Selling is convincing and as long as you’re honest and ethical and have your client’s best interest in mind, you’re not pushy, you’re persuasive.

Are there pushy salespeople? Yes, of course there are! They are out to make the sale no matter how, and they couldn’t care less if the client is satisfied or not. Their method is to put words into the client’s mouth, manipulate their clients, and close the deal no matter who wins or who gets hurt.

The reason for me posting this is because of what happened this morning.  I asked the salesperson who was referred to me, “Was there a reason you didn’t ask your client why he doesn’t want to buy now?” Can you guess what she told me?  “Oh, I couldn’t be that pushy.” That was when the questions of could I be arrested popped up in my mind. 

If you are a decent human being, and I’m sure you are, and your intention is to educate your client so he or she will make the appropriate decision and buy your product or service, then don’t be afraid to convince them. You would obviously be pleasant with your spouse, but persuasive, if you really wanted Italian food for dinner.

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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When is Being the Best Good Enough?

Published on March 28, 2018


When you are already recognized as one of the very best in your industry why press to be even better?

That is a question you would need to pose to Hami Gabayan of Capital Trust Escrow. Hami’s company is at the pinnacle of the industry and yet he brought in David Richman of Butterfield Enterprises, a training and consulting firm, to further enhance the communicative skills of his employees. What do you think? Could that be why Capital Trust Escrow is considered the hallmark of the industry.

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Why Aren’t You Booked?

Published on December 17, 2017

Here David Richman is presenting Certificates of Completion to a few of the participants in Boutique Realty’s Year-End Sales Workshop.

If you haven’t booked your January 2018 Training workshop you may be out of luck. The first half of January is already completely filled and the remainder of the month will also soon be filled.

If you are wondering why Butterfield Enterprises’ David Richman is in Year-round demand it’s not merely because of his 40 plus years of training Sales and Management professionals or because of his degrees in Business and Psychology. Read David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him. Then you will want to schedule a meeting with him.

David’s Linkedin Profile and what his clients have to say about him. Then you will want to schedule a meeting with him. 

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Oh No, Another Mistake!
Published on October 16, 2017


Another day where things just aren’t going the way you had them planned? Have you decided being a salesperson isn’t for you?  You thought it would be easy, right, but you’re making one mistake after another and you’re discovering selling isn’t anywhere nearly as easy as you initially envisioned? 

Get a grip! Nothing is as easy as we initially envision, at least not until we learn to do it well. So, you’re making mistakes and you feel that means you’re never going to get it. The hard truth is you know mistakes are terrible and you’re afraid you’ll never learn.

I’m getting depressed just thinking about how you feel. If you’re going to learn anything at all learn this; mistakes are wonderful, it’s the bases of how we learn! Nobody, in their youth, believes fire is really that hot. Then you make the mistake of sticking your little old hand into that fire, ouch, you have now actually learned what everyone warned you about. They were right, fire is hot . . . really hot. Get the picture? It’s because of making the mistake that you learned!

Don’t become frustrated, or even worse, angry with yourself because you simply made a mistake. Revel in it, you’ve just learned an invaluable lesson. Learn from every mistake. Anything can be learned, that is of course, if you make enough mistakes.

Take solace in the words of publisher Malcolm Forbes, president of Forbes magazine, “Failure is success if we learn from it.

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Smart, Harder . . . I Don’t Know

Published on July 11, 2017

Which do you believe is more beneficial, working harder or working smarter? Most salespeople would think this is an easy question to answer? Why, work smarter of course. And do they then work smarter? No, but they say smarter because it sounds like the right answer.

But how do you actually work smarter? Yeah, that’s the question, isn’t it? The answer to this somewhat perplexing query isn’t quite as simple as it first may appear.  In fact, when all is said and done, being well trained is really what will enable you to know what decisions to make and how to make them in your quest to work smarter.  The undisputable fact is training is the easiest, and often the fastest, way to learn what you need to know to reach your pinnacle of success.

At times training may be little more than imitation. What could be easier than that? Unfortunately more often than not training is what you’re promised, accountability guidance is what you receive. Did you call your clients? Did you mail your letters on time? Is your calendar up to date? Yes, you are being trained! No, that’s not at all adequate training!

Now, I consider this a pretty interesting question; Why do so many Business and Salespeople refuse to accept additional training?  Don’t look at me; I don’t have the slightest idea. 

“By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.”           Confucius

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or (818) 368-1308 or email And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Go Ahead, Give Up!

Published on July 11, 2017

Some time ago I posted an experience Olga Safonoff had with a particular client, or maybe I should say a potential client. I believe what made Olga’s story so poignant to all the Realtors reading it was the attitude she exhibited in the face of what appeared to be an insurmountable objection. Olga is unquestionably the definitive Real Estate professional.

Since that posting a good many homeowners who decided to sell their homes contacted Olga and asked her to represent them in the sale of their homes. Coincidently the majority of their homes sold for over asking and in less time than they expected. I thought you might be interested in reading again the obstacle Olga encountered. It’s something every Realtor can learn from.

Olga Saffonof is a diehard believer in door knocking. One afternoon, while door knocking, she came to Mr. X’s house. We won’t use Mr. X’s real name for obvious reasons. Olga knocked on the door and after a short time the door opened a mere three to four inches. A coarse voice came from behind the door before Olga could say a word. The harsh voice boomed, ”I know who you are. I get all you *&%# in the mail and I’m not selling my house. Don’t come back knocking on my door!” And the door slammed shut.  

After a moment, after the initial shock wore off, Olga said, to the closed door, ”Very nice meeting you. See you next time.” She turned and went to the next house to continue her door knocking.

Nearly four months of door knocking past and Olga was back at Mr. X’s house. Olga stood in front of the house ruminating over her last experience there. Then forward, up the walkway, up the two steps, and she knocked on the door as before. Again it opened a mere three to four inches and the same harsh voice repeated, ”I know who you are. I told you not to come back. I’m not selling my house. Don’t come back and bother me again!” Every time, year after year, when Olga door knocked that street she knocked on Mr. X’s front door and every time she received the same venomous message from behind the barely opened door.     

Toward the end of last year Olga received a phone call from guess who . . . that’s right, Mr. X. He wanted Olga to sell his house. He said she was fearless and never gave up. That’s the kind of Realtor he wanted representing him. Well, that’s in general what he said. There were too many expletives to restate exactly what he said, but you get the main idea.

It was Olga Safonoff’s perseverance and perspicacity that impressed Mr. X enough to make him call her. Olga never acted irrationally, never lost her temper, and most importantly she never gave up. Regardless of the industry in which you work or the tasks you undertake we can all learn a valuable lessen from Olga Safonoff, a truly professional Realtor.   

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or contact him directly at (818) 368-1308 or at And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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Who Needs Training?

Published on June 5, 2017

Always in demand, David Richman of Butterfield Enterprises, is presenting another Training Workshop for the entire staff of Mr. Rooter, Ventura & Santa Barbara. Mr. Rooter is consistently striving to better understand the needs of their clientele, which enables them to offer the finest service possible. 

Butterfield Enterprises was brought in to conduct a twelve week workshop designed to enhance the already excellent customer contact skills of everyone at Mr. Rooter, Ventura & Santa Barbara. 

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile or contact him directly at (818) 368-1308 or at And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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I’m the World's Greatest Expert!

Published on May 25, 2017

“You should pick me instead of that other person because nobody is as good as me!” How about this one, “I’ve got a lot more experience and can do a much better job than her.” And here’s another one. Have you heard this yet? “With my 22 point plan your success is as good as guaranteed.”

Even if you haven’t heard the exact words in the statements above, I’m sure you’ve experienced the intimation of what those braggadocios statements emphasize. So, if the first two Sales or Management Trainers or Coaches you interview tell you they are the best, then how can the next one you interview boldly state, “I’m better than them!”?

Oh boy, if you don’t find this frustrating you’re just not paying very serious attention. I guess the real question here is if everyone you speak with explains to you why they are unquestionably the best, then are any of them truly credible? 

Talk to three, four, or five of their clients. If the best their clients can say about them is, ”They were really nice”, or, “They came highly recommended”, I’m sorry, that simply is not good enough. 

Now, obviously this is going to appear somewhat self-serving. You’ll probably come to that conclusion yourself, because it actually is. Nevertheless, here are some recommendations you may be interested in reading.

From Elvin Apelian, Real Estate Consultant at JohnHart Real Estate

“I had the great pleasure of working with David. Coaching in real estate is a big deal to me. It was important to me to find someone that I could trust and I was lucky enough to find David. He is my adviser, accountability partner and supporter. David is a fantastic trainer. He is energetic, passionate, professional and extremely knowledgeable. The training is well structured and I find it interesting and engaging. He genuinely inspires me and makes me feel really supported and encouraged. His information has allowed me to be the best I can be as a Realtor. He is insightful and a pleasure to work with. I highly recommend David to anyone wishing to improve the performance of their sales.”

From Fabio Tessie, Sales Representative at Avalon Fine Foods Inc.

“I took a Selling Class with David Richman about 15 years ago. I never thought I was suited for sales, but he helped me believe in my capacities. His training was simple. He made me understand the psychology behind the sales negotiations, and the importance of listening. His training helped me become a top salesman at the company that hired me immediately after completion of his course. David is patient, intuitive, honest and flexible. Considering I knew nothing about sales before and the very good sales commissions I made within a few years, the money for his course was the best I ever spent in my life.”

From Olga Safonoff, Realtor at Pinnacle Estate Properties

“The best choice I ever made since the beginning of my career is to start working with you.

For years I was stuck on the same level of production. Just a few months of your sessions brought a humongous brake through in my sales. In the middle of 2014 I already reached the production level which equaled my production in the whole entire 2013.

In addition to that I know I can handle more business at the same time by managing my schedule in the best way possible. I can understand my client's needs better which of course brings me more referrals!

What can I say? It feels fantastic. You are more than a coach, mentor or business adviser to me.  Please take all the credit for all my sales this year because without you they would never happen.” 

From Lauren Wong, Director of Client Services

“David Richman recently gave me over an hour of his time. During that interval, he armed me with new skills to utilize in the competitive job market. Those 60 plus minutes contained such valuable, concise and educational advice that I left our meeting, thinking, "WOW"!! What Mr. Richman had just shared amounted to a day's worth of classes at a group seminar. I was lucky enough to have Mr. Richman's undivided attention, minus a group of other students. He provided information tailored to my own personality, based on his astute assessment of areas where I clearly needed improvement. While Mr. Richman has a commanding presence, he is also extremely kind hearted. If you feel you need motivational guidance, as well as education with your business delivery, make an appointment with Mr. Richman immediately!“

From Andrew Spitz, Realtor, Top ½ of 1% Nationwide at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

“Dave Richman is a Master Coach! I had the absolute pleasure and good fortune (literally) to work with Dave for over eight years. Between organizing, creating systems and teaching me how to work with difficult personalities of both buyers and sellers he was able to help me take my business to new levels that I would never be currently working at. Hopefully, you can work with him to help grow your business and if you think you can’t afford him, think again because you can’t afford not to work with him. Thank you Dave! I am forever in your debt.”

For additional information about David Richman and Butterfield Enterprises review David’s Linkedin Profile, see all of his recommendations, or contact him directly at (818) 368-1308 or at And if you haven’t already done so, join David’s Linkedin network.

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There Not All The Same!

Published on May 12, 2017

Are all Realtors the same? Do all Realtors do a good job? The answer is NO and NO! But every once in a while you come across a Realtor who stands head and shoulders above the rest. A Realtor who is sincerely interested in the wellbeing of her clients, and her non-clients, simply because they are human beings. However, caring for people is not enough to make a person an outstanding Realtor. One has to be detail oriented, knowledgeable of the in’s and out’s of the Real Estate profession, have the ability to read a contract in a lawyerly manner, and be a superior negotiator.  

It’s not difficult to find one or two of these assets in a Realtor, but to find them all in one person . . . you can count Realtors like that on the fingers of one hand. I (D. M. Richman of Butterfield Enterprises) have been training and working with Realtors for over 44 years, so when I tell you Olga Safonoff is one in a million I know what I’m talking about.  

Read what Martin and Jennifer McPike had to say about Olga;

Dear Olga,

We want to let you know how much we appreciated the hard work and professionalism that you put into selling Jennifer’s late father’s home in Woodland Hills.

You had met Jennifer’s father several years earlier and he mentioned it often when you would stop by and chat. Shortly before his death you sold his best friend’s home next door and we found your card and address when we first came down to California from our home in Idaho. You also stopped by that week to offer condolences to the family and we were impressed with your compassion, kindness, and professionalism during that first meeting.

On our second trip to California to take care of the estate the family agreed that you would best represent our interests in the disposition of the property. We called your office and you arrived the same afternoon with “comps” in hand and gave us an honest and fair appraisal of the property’s potential and how it would fare in the local market. We left for home the next day and were very pleased when you had an offer within three days of our listing the home with your firm.

Your help and guidance explaining all the forms, procedures, and negotiations despite the distance involved helped greatly in relieving the confusion involved with a death in the family and the subsequent long distance sale of the property. Your continual attention to detail in what was a highly-complicated undertaking of satisfying the requirements of a Trust and the detailed minutiae of California real estate law was deeply appreciated by the family.

The sale and escrow distribution were completed in just over thirty days and we could not be happier or more satisfied with your kindness, knowledge, and professionalism. We can’t thank you enough for your efforts and being such a bright light during such a stressful period for our family.


Martin and Jennifer McPike

Two days after Olga received this letter a bunch of roses were sent to her from the McPikes. Doesn’t that really say it all? Olga Safonoff is not only a superb professional Realtor, Olga is a very special human being.

D. M. Richman,  of Butterfield Enterprises, a consulting and training firm

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