The day you realize that almost all interaction is sales you are at the brink of something great. To open this insight slightly up: we sell our ideas, ideologies, views, and even feelings hundreds of times per day – even to ourselves. In business sales skills are the ones which often raise a mediocre expert or a leader above others. And by sales skills I don’t mean the plain ability to sell snow to Eskimos, but rather the understanding that everything has value, this value is concentrated energy and this energy has the ability to convert into miraculous things. This insight is something so big and profound, that I recommend to stop and think about it for a while now:
Sales generate value = value is energy = energy converts to miraculous things
Sales = energy = miraculous things
Sales generate miraculous things
To get into more of a concrete level and to give you some tools, it is good to know that the basic mechanics behind one-to-one sales are not that complicated. All you basically need to have is:
- a proper product, service or opinion,
- nice personality, and
- some knowledge of the way the human mind in average works.
In this blog post I scratch the surface of the 3rd bullet, I.e. tell you about the two most important moments when doing a sales contact.
The Peak-End Rule
Daniel Kahneman and Barbara Fredrickson studied the human mind in the 90’s and came up with the concept of Peak-end rule. Wikipedia’s definition is the following:
“The peak–end rule is a psychological heuristic in which people judge an experience largely based on how they felt at its peak (i.e., its most intense point) and at its end, rather than based on the total sum or average of every moment of the experience.”
In sales this means that we should be focusing on two parts of the sales process: the beginning and the end.
The beginning of a sales contact is crucial and you should try to make it as your peak moment. According to brain studies we humans scan threats in our environment 5 times a second. If we feel threatened we are cautious, and our brains are in run-or-fight mode which usually is bad for the business. So the beginning should be all about making sure that the person you are selling to is not feeling threatened. Try to avoid a situation where you are identified as a “telemarketer” – rather try to brand yourself as a friend or a helper. After you have been able to assure that you are not a threat of any kind, you can do the easy part I.e. ask questions and share your expertise. And while talking, it is important to remember that in the end it is never about you, it is always all about the customer!
When it is time to end the sales meeting the second important phase starts. According to The Peak-End Rule people judge the overall experience by the last moments of the meeting. This is where you should again use all of your charm to make the customer feel good. If in doubt, it is safe rather to be too nice than not nice enough. Studies show that even if people notice that your compliments are “sales talk”, the talk still works. Weird indeed, but as a tribal species we are pretty needy for acceptance, and don’t mind too much about how we get it. Also, if possible, end the meeting with a warm handshake or if possible, with a hug. That will greatly increase the bonding between individuals because of the oxytocin released.
“All’s Well that Ends Well.”
In short, people love happy endings, and this most people know to be true by the nature. With this in your mind I assure that you are able to boost your sales to the new maximum. Just focus on creating happy endings!
There are tons of great sales tips and tricks to boost your results, but we’ll get to those more in depth in the future postings. I hope that this post gave you some tools and ideas to boost your sales, and you will be able to pursuit your dreams in the future ever better!
Roadmaps are great. They can help us to implement long and difficult strategies to the ground level operations, make our team’s goals more achievable, and also are a fun way to get to know yourself. I personally recommend doing a roadmap for any goal that feels even a bit challenging to reach. It can be done for yourself, for your team, or why not even for the family?
How a roadmap should look like?
Don’t worry that much about the form or look of the roadmap. Most of all it is a way to communicate what to do and when. For sure it can be a piece of visually stunning art, but a list written in a napkin can also do the job. In short, the best roadmap is the one you are able to carry either in your mind or in your pocket.
How to fill the roadmap?
- First make sure that you know where we are now. Which are your strengths, aspirations and ambitions?
- Get a clear vision of your goal. Where do you want to go? Why do you want to go there? What happens when you get there? How does it feel when you reach your destination? Images can help you visualize your goal. Let’s say you want to get a raise in order to buy a new car. So google the image and use it to get a good grip of what you are working for.
- What skills, elements, investments you need to make to get started. These are most likely the first steps on your trip.
- Now you have done the beginning and the end. Draw a path between them and start building the steps one by one.
- For some people it can be a tremendous help if you think about it as playing a board game and building the path from a to b, c to d and so on.
The article will continue after the image.
- Prefer using as concrete tasks as possible.
- Avoid placing goals that are not achievable. It is important to have big plans, but it is as important to know your limits in order to not get too badly hurt. Being successful is a delicate mix of being ambitious as well as rational and realistic.
- Remember to update your roadmap as you are working your way on it. Sometimes in life things happen overnight, and sometimes there can be obstacles that require you to take a detour.
- Also remember to reward yourself when reaching mid-goals and goals. That will help you to reach your goals better in the future. Find out how the positive reinforcement works – even for yourself. 😉
- Make sure you make your goals and roadmaps public, it will increase the possibility of completing them. At least if you want your organization to know where they should be heading to. But you can also consider communicating your own growth plan, as by doing so you might find friends who share the same goal, and you can help each other. Good leaders also want to help their employees to grow, so it can be that by sharing your roadmap, you are able to help your boss to do their job better.
Here is the example I made for the 2017
It is good to know, that as this is an upper level roadmap, each box will require its own roadmap. But alas; this will help me to remember the big picture I am building for the 2017, and I wish that it would help you to build your own roadmap to be an ever better leader!
It is almost always possible to do the change for the better. A change is a process like any other transformation.
You can start by asking: “What is the most important thing we/I need to do to perform better?”
In order to make the change, be it personal or organizational, I have simplified the process to the abbreviation “CREDIT” – which as a word means:
“praise, approval, or honour” – Cambridge’s dictionary
Besides of the many other meanings the word holds, these verbs perfectly describe the essence of the change. So let’s see what the C.R.E.D.I.T. is made of!
The Six Elements of Making a Change
…the goal, the direction, why the change is needed and what is the one thing that needs to be reached. Make it simple – find the core of the idea and explain why this is the most important task.
It is crucial for the change to succeed so that people understand WHY and HOW the change is done.
People go the extra mile only if they respect you or they fear you. Respect is generated by respecting. Choose your side.
It is the leader whose duty is to coach and motivate employees. Sometimes this requires extra attention, and always good communication: what is expected and why. Just make sure that the person who is being educated is motivated to learn. If in doubt, please check my earlier post http://jukkaniittymaa.com/2017/01/14/how-to-keep-people-happy-and-motivated/
It is always smart to let people participate as much as possible. That is done the best by discussing one to one. In those discussions it is better to listen more than to speak. That is the reason why we have two ears and one mouth. Well not really, but still a nice proverb. 🙂
But don’t try to roll the final responsibility on other people’s shoulders – as a leader you are in charge and also the one who ultimately needs to be able to do the decisions. Even hard ones.
People love the change if it feels good and is beneficial to them. Inspiration can be more motivational I.e. getting praised by a manager or a monetary incentive I.e. giving a bonus for a good work. Very often the best plan is a combination of many ways.
Make sure you know and remember your own goal. And keep steering the ship accordingly. If it looks like nothing is happening amplify the CREDIT process: communicate more, keep respecting, educate those who need and seek guidance, discuss until there is nothing more to discuss and make sure people get rewarded fairly for a good work.
I hope that this simple roadmap helps you to make the change for the better. Also please feel free to comment this post in the comment section below or in the social media. I would love to hear your thoughts. :3