So, sometimes no matter how hard you try, you still have one of those days. Perhaps you lose a teammate – a valuable one. Maybe you lose a sale – one you have been working on for a while. Maybe you lose a client – one that you have moved Heaven and earth to keep happy – to someone offering a lower price, fancy new bells and whistles, the latest whatever it may be. You rallied the troops around that teammate/sale/client, and you still lost. How do you react? Are you angry? Frustrated? Off your game?
So, I think about relationships and leadership a lot. After all, any kind of selling – whether you’re selling to businesses or people – is really about building a relationship. Relationships are founded on milestones: your first date, taking a trip or buying your first car. Yet, relationships are forged on the moments that come in between. It’s the small things that you do such as smile a special smile, sharing a joke or opening a door, that speak to who you are and how the person with you feels when they are around you. Now, every business person today has heard from industry “experts” that loyalty is dead. Gen X and Y folks may have eight or more “banking” relationships. They don’t care about what make and model of car they drive etc. According to many, the days of loyalty are fading fast. Do you buy into that? I don’t. Take a look at your favorite sports team. Take a look at their fan base. Among that loyal fanbase – the jersey wearing face painted nation – are people of all ages. Heck, my 5 year old can recite Kobe’s stats and recently schooled me on Metta World Peace. And my house is part of the Spurs Nation. What happened there?
Now, I’m from a small town in South Dakota where you don’t lock your doors, where you know everyone (and their business) and where you go to the same store to purchase whatever you may need every time. People still wave and say hello when you coast on by. And if you burn a bridge, you probably just burned that bridge with half of the town as word spreads quickly. Every moment matters. In today’s hypercompetitive economy, technology keeps people with us all the time – kind of like that same small town. People you haven’t seen in decades “wave” as you pass by on Facebook, and one bad review or relationship turns into a thousand if not properly tended. Today, you must always be aware, providing better and faster service to improve loyalty and keep your clients happy. There are always opportunities to make magic moments each time you work with someone.
“Can’t you see? Life’s easy if you consider things from another point of view?” – DB Boulevard
Have you ever had your aura read?
Up until earlier this week, my answer would have been “no”, but Conventions in the auto industry are anything but conventional. At one I recently attended, they hosted a lifestyle pavilion where, on your break, you could have your aura read and photographed. I’m always up for new adventures, so although I was a bit skeptical, I decided to try it.
It was fascinating. A rainbow of colors swirls around you in a computer “looking glass” and is photographed. Then a specialist translates what those colors mean: who you are and what you need across various different categories…. heart, communication, thought processes and more.
Now, I’m not sure if I believe or not in the aura and the reading itself, but what I DO know, is that I opened my mind to not only what I may be projecting, but also to another point of view. It helped me view the world from a different perspective.
We all have lives outside of the office. Traffic may be bad on the way in. Sales can be tough. You may be overwhelmed because it feels like you have too many people to call back, too many “looky-loos”, too many meetings, accounts to market to or emails to respond to. So you may try to weed out the ones who are only shopping you and focus on those members or accounts that you know will buy. You may pay more attention to people or clients that have sent referrals, but you don’t market your other accounts as regularly. You may delete e-mails without reading them, or maybe pay less attention to something as you feel it doesn’t apply to you or maybe has no effect for you and your life.
But have you put yourself in the other person’s shoes?
So, you’re stressed out on the way in, and someone sits down at your desk. Do they know you are stressed out? They shouldn’t. Do you stand up, walk around your desk, shake their hand and pull out the chair for them? You should. People pick up on positive energy (and negative too). Every person you work with – regardless of what industry you are in – should walk away from your desk feeling as if they are the most important person in the world to you. After all, by the time they actually do come in for an appointment or call you, they want to buy from you. Whether they’re someone who needs the car (or whatever widget or service you offer) tomorrow, or maybe something tough like a $10,000 Camry – the member wants your service. How are you responding? How quickly do you follow up? Even that $10,000 Camry is a major purchase for most people. If you were on the edge of your seat, excited about your next car and someone did not call you back for a few days even just to check in, would you still feel important?
That referral opportunity for you is expensive, both financially and from a time perspective. It’s also expensive when you think about your reputation. The member who buys from you and believes in you helps generate interest income for you, your company and your partners. It helps keep companies open, people employed, amazing products and services offered to other consumers and more. That referral means not only potential for you and your family, but for every employee at your Company and their families. Are you treating each referral with the importance that it deserves? Are you visiting your clients on the B2B side? You mean business for them. You can help them. If you don’t follow up with them to thank them for their referral, they sit out there wondering – and trust diminishes. If you skip marketing for a week, it diminishes their relationship with you… and ultimately their referrals.
The most successful service and sales people know this intuitively. They follow up consistently and with a process. They do not skip marketing visits or networking opportunities, and they respond quickly and graciously to every referral because they know that referral is a critical piece of a much larger picture. Every referral and success leads to better profitability, a better reputation and a new opportunity, driving more referrals back to YOU. And that beautiful cycle keeps on going.
You have a bright future if we all remember we’re connected, and our actions and attitude have a meaningful impact on everyone else. We may not always see it, but it’s always there.
Aristotle said “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”
I believe it. Together, we can make it true.
For more fun DB Boulevard music, check them and that tune out at: http://www.dbboulevard.it/. Jam on!