Up Poor Helped Make Me Rich
by Bill Sardi: Fed
Up: How To Beat an Incumbent†President
Street-Smart Salesman; How Growing Up Poor Helped Make Me Rich,
by Anthony Belli, John Wiley & Sons, 2012, 220 pages. (Release
date June 15, 2012)
What you want
from a book is an experience, or a lesson, or some deep involvement
where you get lost in the depths of the book and its fascination,
which holds you to its end. Anthony Belli creates such an experience
in his book entitled The Street Smart Salesman; How Growing Up
Poor Helped Make Me Rich.
For this book
to be read only by those who would pursue a career in sales would
limit its message. Its lesson is poignant to every American regardless
of their career path. If the book has no other point than to recognize
the depths of poverty from which Mr. Belli rose, to help you get
over your own personal pity party, then it has served a noble purpose.
You can rise above your circumstances.
are readers who would enviously say there are so many others who
start out life on third base, that it is so difficult to succeed
when competing against the privileged. But Mr. Belliís book seems
to say there is far greater accomplishment in starting out at home
plate and earning your way around the bases than to start off privileged
and fail to learn many of lifeís lessons. Not that hardship is to
be extolled, but overcoming it is what America is all about. The
challenges Mr. Belli faced after his growing-up years were pale
in comparison to what he faced in his first 16 years of life. If
you want to be grateful for what you have in life, read Mr. Belliís
book is published at a time when most young Americans are facing
a difficult future. There is talk of the wealthy 1% while the 99%
face the loss of the American dream. Will the next generation feel
they are part of the America when jobs are few and the idea of a
career, home ownership, and a family have been dashed?
Yet young Mr.
Belli, burdened with caring for a bedridden mother, having 32 rotten
teeth, one set of smelly clothes and tennis shoes held together
by duct tape, who flunked every class in grade school and became
a truant to avoid the sting of being known as the dumbest kid in
Harlem, rose from his poverty in a way that would overshadow the
accomplishments of the most recent billionaire on Wall Street.
all, Belli learned to be alert, on guard, to be watchful for trouble.
See, he had friends who took bullets who were standing next to him.
Simply out of a need for safety, he learned to show respect to the
tough guys who bullied him, and therefore how to wean his way into
starting a relationship with even the toughest prospects he would
later call on as a salesman.
I can recall
riding in a car years ago with Mr. Belli through Harlem, where he
grew up, and he pulled up short of a car in front of his at a stop
light so as to leave room for a get-away should something unexpected
Mr. Belli had to study his street opponents. That led to his study
of sales prospects. He learned to read people in order to survive.
If we have no other lesson than to learn that from reading his book,
we have travelled far in life. Mr. Belli says, to do that, you have
to jot down notes about your prospect, to help you contemplate an
approach. He provides more specifics in chapter six.
somewhere about a quarter of the way into the book, that I had served
as a mentor to Mr. Belli. I met him while delivering a presentation
on value-added selling. He took to it as if it was tailored for
him. But Anthony learned to take it further than I had. To make
sure he let his prospects know his time had to be given in exchange
for his prospectís business. I struggled with being taken advantage
of. Mr. Belli learned how to make the other party part with their
money in exchange for his valuable time. Itís a lesson I had to
it could be said we are all selling someone else to buy into whatever
we offer in life, whether it be a potential spouse, an employer,
or whomever we need to convince to come around to our view of things.
The biggest lesson we have to learn is to get people to part with
money for what I have to offer. That is Mr. Belliís most important
lesson. To accomplish this, you have to be willing to walk away
from your customer. You can read about it in chapter 18.
Belliís book is not about negotiation per se. It is about hope of
rising above your position beyond your own wildest dreams. It is
about how to develop ambition. That is something that canít be taught
in school. It is something Mr. Belli agonizes over because he couldnít
instill ambition into other members of his own family.
Mr. Belli makes
a point when he says "personality, intelligence, math ability,
social and practical skills and educational degrees" have nothing
to do with a personís success. Whoa, tell me more. What have I been
missing? His take is that we all need to become serious students
of human behavior. To capture how to do this, read chapter two in
Then you really
have to take home another of Mr. Belliís strongest lessons. As he
says it, "If you think this book is about how to scam your
customers using my wily secrets, youíre wrong. The truth is that
most salespeople are honest and itís the customers who lie!"
He is so right about that. Customers lie because they want to get
rid of you. Of course, where have we been, not recognizing this
main fact of life? Mr. Belliís book tells you how to deal with that
and turn it into your own favor, regardless of what you are selling.
For in essence, you are always selling yourself.
Oh, Mr. Belli
knows you well. He knows you donít know how to sell. So you are
going to drop your pants, so to speak, that is, give away free samples
and drop your price right from the beginning, to sell your product
or service. But why, asks Mr. Belli? He dares you to put away all
those sales aids your sales manager taught you to use and sell with
your wits only on your first couple of sales calls on a prospect.
Can you live
with failure? Mr. Belli, as he began to grow out of his poverty-like
thinking, became a star baseball player at New York City College.
He learned there that star players make outs seven out of ten times.
His book wants you to test yourself. If you even have a modicum
of an idea you could sell something to anyone, you ought to try
it. Or as Mr. Belliís book says, "if you think you have the
skills to succeed at selling, itís too risky not to try!"
given away enough of the lessons of Mr. Belliís book. Itís time
for you to pick up a copy and learn more of them. They are priceless
lessons of what life is all about stuffed in between pages on how
him mail] is a frequent writer on health and political
topics. His health writings can be found at www.naturalhealthlibrarian.com.
latest book is Downsizing
© 2012 Bill Sardi Word of Knowledge Agency, San Dimas, California.
This article has been written exclusively for www.LewRockwell.com
and other parties who wish to refer to it should link rather than
post at other URLs.†
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