In front of a group of business leaders and small business owners I ran a quick poll of the attendees by asking them to introduce themselves and why they were attending the group presentation I was leading.
One response, in particular, caught my attention.
“What brought you here today?” I repeated to the next person, a gentleman to my right.
“Oh uh, I’m just here to network, ya know, um help if I can, but you know, I’m here to meet others and do some business” he said.
The folks around him immediately were squirming in their seat. They, just like me, recognized the snake in the grass and reacted to the frightful scene.
“We have a salesman amongst us”, I thought “and a bad one at that”…
You see, this is what a ‘typical’ sales person looks like and in most cases they can suck the life out of the room. Even if you are at a meeting, for the reasons as described above, that should never be your explanation to the group. This is only acceptable if you are at a BNI meeting or AmSpirit meeting, where that is the whole point of the meeting. Instead, you should be there to contribute, learn, share and connect with others. You’ve got to do sales, but be a human, not a brainless machine.
Seek first to connect with people, know them, and like them. This means it has to be about them, not about you. Can you imagine this? You have to like THEM. Once you have reached that point with THEM, they are likely to have the same feeling. Don’t like them yet? Don’t trust them yet? You’re not doing it right.
Photo Credit – Jamie / jbcurio
About Justin McCullough
Justin McCullough is mentor, marketer and leader with more than 10 years of selling experience from startups to large corporations. Justin’s experience ranges from advertising agencies to newspapers and web development firms to book publishers. You can find out more about Justin at www.justinmccullough.com or www.leader4hire.net .