When I teach heart-centred business owners how to sell in a way that feels authentic and comfortable, they are often amazed at how smooth and easy the whole process becomes. Yes, even those conversations that used to feel so awkward and clunky become something you to look forward to!
But what my clients also find is that learning to sell from the heart doesn’t only improve their business — it improves their whole life.
After all, another good word for sales (and maybe one that doesn’t conjure up such icky pictures of sleazy salesmen in cheap suits) is “enrolment”.
Just think about it, how often in your daily life do you find yourself wanting to enrol someone else in your vision?
Sure, it may be enrolling your potential client in the vision of how different their life could be after working with you.
But it might be enrolling a spouse or partner into a shared vision of a future that you can work towards together. Or enrolling your boss in the idea of allowing you to switch to part-time working hours so you can pursue an interest your heart is calling you to.
The thing is, very often, getting what we want in life does require the involvement of other people.
For so many women the first hurdle is to learn to ask for what we need in the first place. But then when we do that it can so easily backfire because it’s too easy to come across as though you are just in it for the money.
You see, nobody likes getting pushed into doing something they don’t want to just because it suits your agenda – whether that’s buying your product, or taking the kids to the cinema for the afternoon so you can have some pampering time. When we put the focus only on what we want – on what is best for us without regard for the other person – we end up cajoling and browbeating and pushing the other person away, and then nobody gets what they want.
But if you can learn to implement some of these key principles from heart-centred sales you will find that those interactions go so much more smoothly:
Before you enter the conversation, connect deeply with the reason you are asking and with the person you are asking. The truth is that you can never “make” someone do something to suit your agenda. But if you can truly connect with them you will start to see the world through their eyes – and when you do you can often find a common way, a way where both of you gain, even where before it looked like you were on opposite sides of a chasm.
The magic question to use here is “What’s in it for me?” – not for you personally, but for the other person. What is the value to the other person of saying yes to you? To do this, you need to be able to put what’s best for them high on the agenda. The more you understand what your client (or your husband or boss) really wants, the easier it is for you to show how they can get that by saying yes to you, and then you both get what you want.
3. Lower Resistance
In any interaction where the other person suspects that you might just be out for yourself, they often have their energetic defences right up. I always imagine those plastic riot shields that the police use. Nobody is going to agree to something if they are using all of their energy to defend themselves against you. So rather than be tempted to browbeat, work on lowering this resistance.
One very powerful way to do this is to tell them straight up that you are not going to be forcing them to make a decision, and it will be OK with you if they say no – but you would like them to seriously consider what you have to say.
Another is to make sure you have their permission and full attention. Don’t just walk up to someone and launch in to your agenda with any warning, instead ask them:
“It sounds to me like my work could really help you, is it OK with you if I tell you a little more about my programmes?”
4. Follow a Structure
A good structure is pure gold in a sales conversation — it gives the conversation focus and makes sure it actually has a clear outcome. Similarly, if you want to have an important conversation with your partner about you giving up work to go back to college, don’t just leap in and blurt stuff out – it’s not likely to go well. Instead, plan it in advance. Know how you will guide the conversation to make sure that you cover all the right things in the right order so that you can demonstrate the value, lower resistance, and guide the conversation to a decision that works for both of you.
When you apply some of these principles you’ll be amazed at how much smoother and easier those conversations feel for everyone involved. My invitation to you? Try at least one of these principles out in the coming week, and let me know how it goes in the comments!
Want to learn more?
Would you like to learn more about how to have heart-centred sales conversations without being pushy or manipulative? Then join me for this online training on Wednesday 23rd September at 7.00pm!
You might also like to read...
- (Guest Post) Why is sales so difficult when you care? - September 6, 2017
- Selling from the Heart — It’s Not Just for Business - September 21, 2015