I Hear You Smiling ü

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Not all salespeople


are leaders,


but all leaders


are salespeople!


     Psychologists tell us it’s a pretty safe bet that a sale is made or broken in the first 10 seconds. The first make-or-break second of the first 10 seconds is the impression made by your smile… ü

     So maybe it’s a good time to run to the mirror and evaluate. Is yours: Genuine? Fake? Masking upset? Token? Mocking? Ambivalent? A slight grin? A mouthful of teeth and gums? A lecherous drool?

     You needn’t be a toothpaste commercial, shooting forth little light beams every time you open your mouth anymore than your handshakes need to break bones. Let authenticity be your guide. 

     Do you ever find yourself thinking that you can put one over on someone because you’re on the telephone? After all, the other person can’t see your face so you can scowl all you want, chew gum, eat pretzels, rattle ice cubes, clack your teeth, pick your nose, or tap on your keyboard . . . and “who knew?”

     Ah, but surely you can hear me if I do those things to youon the phone; why would you imagine others can’t pick up dumb and disgusting noises or subconscious vocal (er, ah, uh, um, duh, uh-huh, ahem, awk!) signals from you?

     Can we hear each other smiling?Of course. We can also hear a ton of other emotions when the importance of the call warrants careful attention, and probably half a ton even when the call’s a casual one. How many times have you spoken with a total stranger and known immediately that the person has a cold, or is upset, or preoccupied, or in a hurry? How about when it’s someone you know well?

     We listen with “selective perception.” Like the artist walking into a crowded party focused on where the host hung her artwork, or the alcoholic who nods and smiles his way along the shortest straight line route to the bar, or the recently downsized administrator searching out prospective employer-types to impress. The same selective perception. We perceive what we want to perceive and we pick out or select the words and tone of voice and attitude we want to hear.

     In fact, depending on who’s on the other end, we may “work the room” so to speak in an effort to prompt those desired words and tone and attitude. A little light humor can do the job. Sometimes a sob or two. Can you tell when someone is trying these ploys? Manipulation is not authenticity. 

     Successful leaders use selective perception too, but they don’t limit input when it serves a purpose; in fact, they encourage it. There’s a song from the ’70s by the group, “YES,” that I’ve always liked with the line, “Don’t surround yourself with your self!”

     Unprofessional salespeople who lack vision tend to do this. Being too caught up with or full of themselves loses sales. Weak, dillusional leaders often do it to mask their insecurities until discovery unravels the truth of their missions.

     If you are a good leader, you are selling constantly because it’s your job to motivate others to want to achieve what you need them to do using strategic approaches that they contribute to. If you’re a good salesperson, you recognize the importance of providing effective leadership for your customers and the communities you serve.

     And –VOILA!– it all starts with a real, smile-like-you-mean-it smile… ü    


Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You!

Make today a GREAT day for someone! 

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One Comment to “I Hear You Smiling ü”

  1. […] recognize that every form of leadership gets its salt and pepper from the world of professional sales, and particularly for spicing up the first ten seconds of every encounter, which is the amount of […]

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