TODAY, AUGUST 20, 2015, IS CHINESE VALENTINE’S . And while it is a work day, there’s no reason why you can’t celebrate the day earlier, at work, particularly if you are a sales professional. So if you are looking for something amazing from your professional AND personal relationships, keep reading.
Tip #1: Set the tone for open communications & exchange expectations
For your clients:
Ask what your client is looking for in a vendor relationship. One coaching technique is called ‘peak moment’, which is asking about his/her previous success.
Sample Question: “What have worked very well for you in the past when you worked with other training consulting firms?”
For your date:
It is important to know if the guy or girl in front of you is looking for something serious, or just for fun. Ladies can’t just assume. We gain control when we take the initiative to ask.
Sample question: “This has been fun. Just out of curiosity, what are you looking for?”
There are a lot more tips for ladies in Steve Harvey’s book ‘Think like a Man, Act like a lady’.
Tip #2: Begin with NO Goal in Mind; Yes, and…
You have heard me loud and clear. Lose your agenda.
For your clients:
Have you ever ‘fake’ listened to your clients while thinking of something else? Your client talks about A but you secretly feel anxious about moving on to B? Your client throws a difficult question at you and you lose your pose and confidence all together?
My acting class’ teacher told me that when you act, you should lose control, and let your partner change you. That way, you will gain authenticity and trust. It is probably the opposite of what your negotiations class have taught you. What I have seen is that some sales people bring a script when they make the call. They have ‘opening’, ‘building rapport’, and ‘objection handling’ scripts prepared before heading into a meeting.
What if your client suddenly revealed his mask and turned into James Bond? Peter Pan? Somebody who doesn’t speak Mandarin?
Use “Yes, And…” Treat the information from your client as a solid fact and add your own piece of contribution one at a time. Your client might be a reserved banker in his 50s showing no emotions, but you will still know what to do because you accept that fact and can adjust your behaviour based on that.
For example, when a client asks for more product at the same price. You don’t have to say no. You can say: “Yes, and we can do that at additional cost.”
When a client tries to talk about how other vendors have done bigger and better things, you can say, ” Yes, and that’s why we are known for being really good at doing ABC. We are not trying to be the biggest mediocre.”
Watch Morry Morgan talk about saying “yes” to a request he didn’t want in this Insight.
For your date:
First, qualify your date to see if he is a potential viable partner. Don’t let the guy throw you off by “negging” you. If a guy tells you that “you are eating all that by yourself?” You don’t have to feel self-conscious and defensive. Simply use “yes, and” to deal with surprises.
“Yes, and why are you asking?”
If he asks “you have 3 kids?”
Say “Yes, and what do you think about that?”
The point is that you never have to explain yourself. Just improvise. You don’t have to have a prepared statement.
Once you have qualified the guy or girl sitting in front of you and determined that he is somebody who can potentially meet the majority or your needs, still, improvise.
Those are the two important tips that I challenge you to use on this romantic day and see if they make a difference. You know that besides ‘fight or flight’, there is a third option – be assertive and improvise. It has helped me deal with most matters in my professional and personal life. I hope that it would help you too.