Fanatical Military Recruiting: The Five Traits ofUltra-High Performing Military Recruiters
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More About This Title Fanatical Military Recruiting: The Five Traits ofUltra-High Performing Military Recruiters


Military Recruiting is a war. It’s just a different kind of war than what you were prepared and trained to fight for. Recruiting is a war for talent.

Smart, competent, and capable people are rare and in high demand. Every organization, from commercial enterprises, healthcare, non-profit, sports, and education, to the military is in an outright battle to recruit and retain these bright and talented people.

Rather than bullets and bombs, the war for talent is won through high-impact prospecting activity, time discipline, intellectual agility, emotional intelligence, and human to human relationships. On this highly competitive, ever changing, asymmetrical battlefield, to win, you must operate at a level of excellence beyond anything asked of military recruiters before.

Yet, in this new paradigm, many recruiters are struggling, and most recruiting units are staring down the barrel at 50 percent or more of their recruiters consistently missing Mission.  

It is imperative that we arm military recruiters with the skills they need to win in this challenging environment. The failure to make Mission is an existential threat to the strength and readiness of America’s fighting forces and our democracy.

Fanatical Military Recruiting begins where the Recruiting and Retention colleges of the various branches of the military leave off. It is an advanced, master’s level training resource designed specifically for the unique demands of Military Recruiting. In FMR, you’ll learn:

  • The Single Most Important Discipline in Military Recruiting
  • How to Get Out of a Recruiting Slump
  • The 30-Day Rule and Law of Replacement
  • Powerful Time and Territory Management Strategies that Put You in Control of Your Day
  • The 7 Step Telephone Prospecting Framework
  • The 4 Step Email and Direct Messaging Framework
  • The 5 C’s of Social Recruiting
  • The 7 Step Text Message Prospecting Framework
  • How to Leverage a Balanced Prospecting Methodology to Keep the Funnel Full of Qualified Applicants
  • Powerful Human Influence Frameworks that Reduce Resistance and Objections
  • The 3 Step Prospecting Objection Turn-Around Framework
  • Mission Drive and the 5 Disciplines of Ultra-High Performing Military Recruiters

In his signature right-to-the-point style that has made him the go-to trainer to a who’s who of the world’s most prestigious organizations, Jeb Blount pulls no punches. He slaps you in the face with the cold, hard truth about what’s really holding you back. Then, he pulls you in with stories, examples, and lessons that teach you exactly what you need to do right now to become an ultra-high performing recruiter.

Fanatical Military Recruiting is filled with the high-powered strategies, techniques, and tools you need to keep your funnel packed with qualified applicants. As you dive into these powerful insights, and with each new chapter, you’ll gain greater and greater confidence. And, with this new-found confidence, your performance as a military recruiter will soar and you will Make Mission, Fast.


JEB BLOUNT is the founder and CEO of Sales Gravy, a global leader in sales acceleration. He is the author of ten books and a highly sought-after advisor to a who's who of the world's leading organizations. Most recently, Jeb has taken a leading role in military recruiter training and development and advising United States Military leadership on improving military recruiter performance.


I Go to Basic xv

A Conundrum xv

Learning the Language xvii

Military Recruiting versus Civilian Sales xviii

Part I: Mission Critical 1

Chapter 1 Military Recruiting Is Facing a Perfect Storm 3

Qualification Standards Continue to Tighten 5

Chapter 2 Nothing Prepared You for This War 7

On Most Days, Recruiting Doesn’t Feel Much Like Winning 8

Asymmetric Battlefield 9

Civilians 9

Rejection 9

FMR versus What You Learned at the Schoolhouse 11

Chapter 3 Fanatical Prospecting 13

Chapter 4 Stop Wishing Things Were Easier 16

There Is No Easy Button in Military Recruiting 17

Get Better 19

Part II: The Ask 21

Chapter 5 Effective Recruiting Begins with the Discipline to Ask 23

Conjuring the Deepest, Darkest Human Fear 24

Chapter 6 How to Ask 26

Emotional Contagion: People Respond in Kind 27

The Assumptive Ask 28

Shut Up 33

Be Prepared for Objections 34

Part III: On The Move 35

Chapter 7 The More You Prospect, the Luckier You Get 37

The Universal Law of Need 38

The 30-Day Rule 40

The Law of Replacement 42

The Anatomy of a Recruiting Slump 43

Oscar Mike: The First Rule of Recruiting Slumps 45

Make Your Own Luck 45

Chapter 8 The Three Ps That Are Holding You Back 47

Procrastination 48

Perfectionism 50

Paralysis from Analysis 52

Disrupting the Three Ps 52

Part IV: Battle Rhythm 55

Chapter 9 Time Discipline 57

Twenty-Four 58

Leveraging Horstman’s Corollary 60

Time Blocking 63

Stick to Your Guns and Avoid Distractions 65

Concentrate Your Focus 66

Beware of the Ding 68

What Lurks in Your In-box Can and Will Derail Your Recruiting Day 70

Driving Is Not an Accomplishment 71

Protect the Golden Hours 72

Leverage the Platinum Hours 75

Adopt a Command Mind-Set 76

Part V: Targeting 79

Chapter 10 Targeting—Leveraging the Prospecting Pyramid 81

Walk Like an Egyptian: Managing the Prospecting Pyramid 83

Powerful Lists Get Powerful Results 85

The Recruiting Information Support System Is Your Most Valuable Recruiting Tool 87

A Trash Can or a Gold Mine 89

Own It! 90

Chapter 11 Yes Has a Number 91

Recruiting Is Governed by Numbers 93

It’s All About the Ratios 94

Changing Your Yes Number 96

Chapter 12 Qualifying: Talking to the Right People 98

Don’t Swing at Nothing Ugly 99

Moneyball 100

The Balance and Nuance of Qualifying 102

Chapter 13 Prospecting Balance and Objectives 105

Set an Appointment 106

Gather Information and Qualify 107

Build Familiarity 107

Prospecting Is Not Pitching 108

Adopt a Balanced Prospecting Methodology 108

The Fallacy of Putting All Your Eggs in One Basket 109

Avoid the Lunacy of One Size Fits All 110

Part VI: Pick Up the Phone! 113

Chapter 14 Telephone Prospecting Excellence 115

Nobody Answers a Phone That Doesn’t Ring 117

The Telephone Is, Has Always Been, and Will Continue to Be Your Most Powerful Recruiting Tool 118

Nobody Likes It; Get Over It 120

The Ultimate Key to Success Is the Scheduled Phone Block 123

Chapter 15 The Seven-Step Telephone Prospecting Framework 125

Seven-Step Telephone Prospecting Framework 129

Practice the Framework 139

Chapter 16 Just Eat the Frog 140

Chapter 17 Leaving Effective Voice Mail Messages That Get Returned 144

Five-Step Voice Mail Framework to Double Callbacks 145

Develop Compelling Voice Mail Messages 147

Part VII: Objections 149

Chapter 18 Objections Are Not Rejection, but They Feel That Way 151

Not the Same 153

But It Feels the Same 155

Chapter 19 The Science Behind the Hurt 157

A Biological Response 158

The Most Insatiable Human Need 159

Chapter 20 Rejection Proof 161

The Seven Disruptive Emotions 162

Develop Self-Awareness 165

Positive Visualization 166

Manage Self-Talk 167

Change Your Physiology 169

Stay Fit 170

Obstacle Immunity 171

Adversity Is Your Most Powerful Teacher 175

Leveraging Adversity 176

Chapter 21 Prospecting Objections 178

We Feel, Then We Think 180

The Rule of Thirds 183

Prospecting RBOs 184

Prospecting RBOs Can Be Anticipated in Advance 187

Planning for Prospecting RBOs 190

The Three-Step Prospecting Objection Turnaround Framework 192

The Ledge 192

Disrupt 194

Ask 199

Putting It All Together 199

Part VIII: Face-To-Face and Digital Prospecting 201

Chapter 22 Face-to-Face Prospecting 203

The Four-Step Face-to-Face Prospecting Framework 204

First Impressions: Making an Emotional Connection 206

Triggering the Negativity and Safety Biases 207

The Five Questions That Matter Most in Recruiting 210

Likability: The Gateway to Emotional Connections 212

Pitch Slapping 213

Keys to Being More Likable 215

Put Your Recruiting Goggles On 216

Chapter 23 Text Messaging 218

Familiarity Is Everything with Text 219

Use Text to Anchor Face-to-Face Conversations 220

Use Text to Nurture Prospects 221

Use Text to Create Opportunities for Engagement 222

Seven Rules for Structuring Effective Text Prospecting Messages 223

Chapter 24 E-Mail and Direct Messaging 225

The Four Cardinal Rules of E-Mail and Direct Message Prospecting 226

Effective Prospecting E-Mail and Direct Messages Begins with a Plan 233

The Four-Step E-Mail Prospecting Framework 236

Practice, Practice, Practice 242

Pause Before You Press “Send” 242

Chapter 25 Social Recruiting 244

Social Recruiting Is Not a Panacea 245

The Social Recruiting Challenge 245

Social Recruiting Is About Nuance 246

Choosing the Right Social Channels 247

Five Objectives of Social Recruiting 248

The Five Cs of Social Recruiting 256

Social Recruiting + Outbound Prospecting = A Powerful Combination 260

Creating Obligation and Leveraging the Law of Reciprocity with Social Media 262

Chapter 26 The Law of Familiarity 265

Familiarity Reduces Friction and Resistance 266

Five Levers of Familiarity 267

Part IX: Charlie Mike 273

Chapter 27 Mission Drive 275

The Four Pillars of Mission Drive 276

Embrace the Suck—You Have to Grind to Shine 281

The Enduring Mantra of Ultra-High-Performing Recruiters 283

The Mantra of Fanatical Military Recruiting 285

Charlie Mike 286

Notes 289

About the Author 295

Acknowledgments 297

Index 299