Regardless of what role we have in organizations, I believe we are all in sales. Why? Because all of us, more often than not, are in the business of connecting solutions to problems and essentially transferring trust. We are usually convincing other people to buy into an idea, product or service we’re offering. Sometimes the person is internal to our organization; other times they are outside. If we peel away the veneer we usually are helping someone avoid a pain or fear and/or helping them achieve a desire or goal. I believe the RESPECT value of the Character Triangle is a gateway for successful selling. Why? Because, one of the key subsets of RESPECT is great listening.
Recently I heard a terrific presentation from super sales coach and leader Gerry Layo. Here is the essence of his short course on selling. Gerry says the short course is 4 words:
ASK QUESTIONS AND LISTEN!
Too often we are so focused on what we are going to say that we stop listening. Gerry’s contention is that the strongest sentences we can give to customers end in question marks? I believe it’s the same for anyone we interact with; at work or at home. When we can get people to open up, to trust us with their hopes or fears, we can usually help.
Another great sales coach, the legendary Zig Ziglar, said, “They don’t care what you know until they know that you care.” So when we ask the questions we also have to listen with sincere purpose and care.
People who live in the Triangle contribute great value to others …and that is what great sales people are …super value providers.
So you and I can improve ourselves by applying Layo’s short course on selling.
What do you think of someone walking on broken glass, barefoot on Venice Beach?
Why would someone walk barefoot over broken glass? Of course we don’t know unless we asked that person what they were trying to achieve or accomplish and why it is important to them. Listening with understanding is vital to having respect. People come in all shapes and sizes. That is the beauty of diversity. It is important not to assume or judge without really understanding first.
The video below discusses the difference between the standardization on the values of the Character Triangle, while appreciating the uniqueness of individuals.
Venice Beach is a poignant reminder of the richness of diversity living side by side with the standardization of the values of the Character Triangle. Diversity and standardization can co exist.
Attack the Issue, Not each Other! What would happen if Congress listened with understanding? When we talk about Respect, one definition of the word is “to look again”. What if Congress “looked again”? I’m not interested in making a political statement. But what if we were to look at our Health Care issues as a system and set of processes as a problem? What if we attacked the processes, issues, situation, and not each other? What if we looked again? …all sides?
What if we were abundant thinking? What if we outlined a desired future state of health care and financial implications with a sense of possibilities and opportunity; rather than win lose?
Ok, so there are different philosophical and economic tenants. So what if we outlined them honestly, to the best of our ability versus attacking others? Our obligation would be to present our best possible viewpoint? What’s the worst that could happen? Our collective bipartisan wisdom might surprise us?
Congress frankly needs a strong unrelenting dose of the CT. Let’s attack the issue… not each other. Let’s listen with all of our attention and might. Let’s ask what and how we might make a difference. Let’s believe we have more than enough resources to make a difference. Let’s respect all viewpoints!
The constant in Lorne’s diverse career is his ability to successfully lead organizations through significant change. At US West, where he served as a Vice President / Company Officer, Lorne was one of only seven direct reports ... Read more about Lorne Rubis
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Our character is exclusively ours. We define it by how we think and what we do. I believe that acting with Character is driven by what I call the Character Triangle.
What, exactly, is the Character Triangle (CT)?
The CT describes and emphasizes three distinct but interdependent values:
Be Accountable: first person action to make things better, avoiding blame. Be Respectful: being present, listening, looking again, focusing on the process. Be Abundant: generous in spirit, moving forward, minimizing the lack of.