By Ryan Taft, Jeff Shore Sales Training
Imagine getting on an airplane, settling in to your seat; prepared for a long and uneventful flight when suddenly you hear the captain announce the following:
“Welcome to flight 1299, non-stop from Phoenix to Atlanta. My name is Captain Fergueson and my First Officer is Jim Tuttle.
We hope to get you to Atlanta in one piece, but since this is our first time flying, we could use all the luck we can get.
If you are a person of faith, a couple of prayers wouldn’t hurt. Thank you and we will be under way shortly.”
I don’t know about you, but I am getting off of that flight stat!
Here’s another scenario for you.
You are going under the knife for surgery.
Your Dr. tells you right before the operation:
“Between you and I, I am a little nervous about this procedure. I read about it but I haven’t actually performed it. I guess we will find out. See you in the O.R.!”
What do both of the examples have in common?
In both scenarios the perceived ‘expert’ had serious confidence issues, which would cause any customer to hesitate to move forward with their product or service.
What does that have to do with you?
I am glad you asked. It comes down to this simple but powerful truth:
People are attracted to confidence
People retreat from a lack of confidence
There are several key moments where your level of confidence will determine if your potential customer will be attracted to your offer or repelled.
• Sharing the price and terms
• Handling a price objection
• Dealing with the question, “How do you compare to _______ (your main competition)?
• Showing your product
• Handling any objection
• Asking for the sale
I am sure you can fill in more places where confidence is crucial.
That being said, how do you ensure you have confidence?
Well I believe that it makes sense to look at all aspects of your communication to answer that question.
Here are a few ways to ensure that you are showing up with confidence when it really counts:
1. Eliminate “doubt” words – It is amazing how one word can shift a potential customer from buying your product to walking out of your storefront.
Confident communicators do not use the following two words when working with clients and I encourage you to eliminate them as well.
a. Try. Yoda said it best. “Try not. Do or do not. There is no try.”
When you use the word “try” you are telling your customers that you have uncertainty.
Think of the pilot above. You are going to “try” to get me to Atlanta safely?
Either do it or don’t.
b. Hope. Stop “Hoping” and start “Knowing”.
Feel the difference in these two examples: “I hope you like it” vs. “I know you will like it!”
2. Infuse certainty into your tonality – Pay attention to people who speak with confidence. There is a pattern to their tonality.
Say the following phrase out loud as though you were the least confident person on the planet.
“I love liver and onions.” (Don’t ask me where I came up with that.)
Now say it again as though it is the truest statement you have ever made in your entire existence!
What did you notice about you tone?
If you really said it out loud, you probably noticed that your tone went up when you were not confident, particularly when you said, “…liver and onions.”
It is almost as if it should have a question mark at the end of it.
But on the confident attempt, you dropped your tonality and probably emphasized the word “Love”.
Can you hear the difference?
Be certain to incorporate the confident tonality pattern into your sales presentation to build confidence with your customers.
3. Avoid body language that portrays uncertainty – When I am working with sales people on their communication skills, I often see body language that resembles a shaky 15-year-old kid on his first date. (I am speaking from experience here.)
Here are a few examples of sales killing body language:
• Shrugging your shoulders when handling objections
• Squinting your eyes when sharing the price of your product (This often tells me that the sales person thinks their product is overpriced.)
• Shaking your head in a ‘no’ fashion when asking for the sale (50% of sales people I work with do this!)
Analyze your sales presentation.
Video yourself and look for patterns of unconfident communication you can improve.
When you show up with confidence, your customer will be more attracted to your offer.
When that happens, you have a better shot at changing their world.