Saddles, knolls, knobs, draws, slides, glens, notches, peaks, corners, swells, gullies, shelf’s, walls, flats, dips, ridges, fingers, blow outs, cornices, points, drops, bolder fields, passes, haunts, meadows, shoulders and tops. That is mountain speak for identifying particular locations in the mountains. I learned this years ago on a 10-day adventure in Gunnison National Park in Colorado.
Gary Chapman suggest in his book “ The Language of Love” there are different styles of expressing love. Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, Physical Touch, Words of Affirmation, and Quality Time. Each has an underlying and specific style and there are certainly combined complexities that make for conflicts in relationships. He goes on to discuss that many relationship problems are rooted when different styles get together.
In short, as humans, we are always imposing our beliefs on others.
Remember the Golden Rule in kindergarten? Do unto others as you would like done unto you. This is a great rule when you are 6 years old. However, it is the stupidest rule ever unwritten when we become adults in business. Suppose I don’t want done unto me what you want done unto you. Does that help you persuade me???? I don’t think so.
Imagine yourself stuck in a foreign country and you don’t know the language, they don’t know yours and you have no passport. Pretty uncomfortable, Kimosabe!
How do you let someone know you understand them? Easy! Speak their language.
Mountain speak, love speak, telecom lingo, technology, manufacturing, banking, accounting, construction, chemicals, education, moms, coaches, teenagers, managers, CEO’s, entrepreneurs, software, and the list could go on. But I’m sure you get the point.
Every industry has developed its own language and each individual has their own language too. It’s hard to speak your prospect’s language if you don’t first listen. Yeah, I’M SURE THIS IS NOT THE FIRST TIME YOU’VE HEARD THAT. However, what are you listening to?
Are you listening with intent to give advice? Are you listening to critique? Are you listening slowly? Are you listening to the words? The tone? The body language? Are you listening between the lines? Or are you listening to your own thoughts? Thinking of the next question to ask? The point you want to make? What you need to do after the meeting? What you are doing for the weekend? We are all guilty of poor listening…some more than others.
Listening is a focused process not an event.
The ‘Law of Requisite Variety’ says: In any systems of humans or machines, the part which has the most variety wins. In other words, birds of a feather flock together.
Whether you are an engineer, manager, sales, customer service, CEO or support person, if you have the need to influence outcomes it is easier to persuade when the pursuadee likes you. Listening is one of the biggest complaints about business, relationships and life. It makes no difference if you are selling, managing, servicing, producing, or creating, we all sell ideas. Nothing happens until, first a sale is made.
To listen effectively and intentionally, focus… clear your mind and begin with a blank sheet of paper. No preconceived notions and no thoughts of ‘self’. Listen and respond as if you were the person in front of you. Pay attention to the finer points. Their individual unique way of expressing themselves and then take on that persona and use what was given. Use their words in questions. Take on their style of thinking. Speak at the same rate, volume pitch and mode. Follow the leader with their tone, and physiology. (Big word for body language). Be the person in front of you. Remember, people buy from people first. Apply the ‘Law of Requisite Variety’ and you will have more positive outcomes in business! Remember, there are no personality conflicts in business. The conflict starts when we refuse to change our style. And to be successful you have to be willing to change your style to whatever is necessary to create a win win win solution.
The holidays are approaching like a freight train and most of us will have the distinct pleasure to be around friends and relatives at holiday celebrations. Use this time to practice listening and getting into someone else’s world.
Interested people are interesting!