Have you ever wondered why most sales techniques sound better than they work? It’s because fewer times that most of us would believe, your success isn’t based on your techniques, or scripts. There is typically an unidentified element that plays a more important part in our success, whether that success is in sales, management, or administration.
Let’s pursue this idea. Let’s say someone comes to you to ask for a favor. You don’t really know this person very well. They’re an acquaintance at best, but not really someone you would call a friend. They’re definitely haven’t earned the right to be a part of your “inner circle”. But, let’s say they come to you and ask you for a favor that only someone on your inner circle would have the right to ask, something like, “Can I stay at your house for the next two weeks while my house gets repainted?”
I’m not asking you whether or not you would agree to the request. That’s an entirely different conversation. I’m asking, if someone you barely knew made a request like this, candidly how would you feel. I can tell you what the general answers have been over the past 8 years that I’ve been asking this question. The most common answer is, “I’d feel put-upon!”. There, of course are other answers, such as, “Uncomfortable!” “Uneasy!”, “Suspicious”. In all fairness, occasionally someone WILL say, “I’d feel honored to be asked!”, but usually the answer is more like the others.
Now, let’s take another example. Let’s say you have someone in your life who you are really close to. They ARE part of your inner circle! The two of you have gone through both the ups and the downs of life and you’ve done it together. Let’s say that they need help. It’s help you not only could easily give them, but you’d want to be the person to help them out. But, let’s say they don’t come to you for help, they go somewhere else. Candidly, how would you feel?
I can also tell you the most common answers for this example. The most common answer is, “I’d feel hurt!” The rest of the most common choices are, “I’d wonder what’s wrong!” “I’d wonder if I did something to offend them!”, “I’d wonder why they didn’t come to me!” There occasionally is an answer like, “I’d be happy for them to be responsible for getting their own results”, but those are usually pretty scarce.
So with one example you feel uncomfortable if they DO ask for your help. With the other example you feel uncomfortable if they DON’T ask for your help.
The first “missing piece” is that each of these examples could be the same request.
Whether someone get’s their feelings hurt if you do not let them help you build your business, etc isn’t based so much on how the request is made…it’s more dependent on the quality and closeness of the relationship. I believe that the quality of your business and your life is actually based on the quality of your relationships. If the relationship works, the details don’t tend matter. If the relationship doesn’t work, then the details don’t tend to help.
The second missing piece is that you can only have the kind of relationship with someone else that you have with yourself. If you can’t trust yourself, you probably have difficulty trusting someone else. If you doubt your own credentials and credibility, you probably question the credentials and credibility of those around you.
The more open, authentic, grounded, and transparent you are with yourself, the more open, authentic, grounded, and transparent others will tend to be with you.
Many people want to move their business to another level. But, businesses don’t move to other levels…people do! The key to your ongoing success lies in your willingness to look within yourself and discover what needs to be done for you to be more confident, more certain, and more candid.
© 2007, Carter Institute, Inc. all rights reserved