“If you spend more time asking appropriate questions rather than giving answers or opinions, your listening skills will increase” - Brian Koslow - American Author and Entrepreneur
How many times has an offer been presented to you
that you had no need for. How much time did the
presenter spend talking and how much information
did he obtain from you in regards to your business,
your needs to improve your business. Very little I am
sure or more, did you know what they were even
talking about? Did it make sense to you and did it tap
into anything for you? If I can pass on one piece of
information to you that will open the doors of success
it is this... Information is knowledge, and with that
information you will succeed.
Think about where you do business, why do you go to
a particular barber or hair dresser, why you shop at a
particular store, where you bank, your lawyer,
accountant. There are people there you know and
trust because they know what you need. You know
they care about your best interests. They want to help
provide you with the things you prefer, or the way you
like to be treated. Now how did those people learn all
that about you to create such loyalty? How did they
build that kind of trust? How the heck did the dog
groomer know so much about you? Why did the
prospect pick the other guy instead of you for the
These people were masters at building a
relationship, asking the right questions and
listening to the answers.
I want to tell you a little story that was one of my great
successes. Not to brag, but to show you the power of
listening and what it can do for you. I represented a
line that had six major competitors; all excellent
companies, all good products similar in nature and
very lucrative, with reps that all had excellent
relationships with the customer I had. I won the
account for this product category. It was big, it was
sweet , it was incredibly satisfying .... it was
Most people, even if they know you, don't make snap
judgments. I'm sure you don't agree to buy something
just because someone said, "hey, buy my stuff!" Not
only do you need to know the whys, you need to know
how it will help you before you fork over your hard
earned cash. But, listening to incessant babble about
why the presenter thinks its a good deal doesn't mean
it's a good deal for you. I had the luxury in my case
of having a great relationship with my customer, and
had proven that I could be relied on, gave great
service, was honest and cared. But so did the five
other guys. We were all selling "fiffle fafffle" and they
all talked about how great their "fiffle faffle" was. I
chose not to talk about "fiffle faffle", I chose to ask
why he was considering "fiffle faffle". From that one
simple question a dialog ensued that gave me an
incredible amount of information. I knew why he
wanted change, I learned about his frustrations, his
concerns, the need to grow his business. I learned
what other products I represented that would be
useful in the future. I sat there listening, not
speaking, empathizing where necessary, taking
notes and started to build a program based on his
business as he saw it not how I thought it should
be. So, when I did finally present my "fiffle faffle"
there was no need to negative sell the competition,
there was no need for endless hours of stating my
"fiffle faffle" was the greatest "fiffle faffle" in the
world.... just a program that fit his needs and a clear
way it would help grow his business in the direction
he wanted it to go.
The short of it is folks, you can't sell something big
if you don't understand who you are talking to. If
you speak more than ask questions, how will you
know anything? You can email people all day with
free stuff, and $5.00 e-books making money here
and there, but what have you've gained? Nothing.
You may have a data base of thousands of leads and
prospects, but do you have any clue what they need?
Do you know what they want in order to grow their
business? How do you know you need to have it to
sell if you don't know what it is? Are you missing an
opportunity? If you asked your base any of these
questions, would you know how to communicate
with them better? YES!
Whether you communicate through emails, or
through all the social networks out there, or through
forums, ask and listen to the responses. Write down
what you learn or use your computer's note pad.
We spend so much time learning the technical
aspects of what we do, looking for the easy way to
make things happen that we neglect the human
factor. There are people on the other side of the
screen folks. Sometimes we forget that. If you
want to succeed in this crazy place we call the
information highway, we need to learn what
information is valuable information.
As always, feel free to contact me with your questions.
I enjoy passing along information that helps you grow
Keep those questions coming!
Wishing you success this week.