3-5 Smart Things to Consider
- 1) Selling and the art of storytelling go hand in hand.
- 2) The more complex our selling environment, the more complex our solutions tend to be.
- 3) Increased competition forced the move from features & functions to visions and values selling.
- 4) Selling vision and value is where the margin was but presented a tantalizing temptation for story-sellers to stray from hard reality into the netherworld of plausibly believable embellishment.
- 5) New research sounds a warning for salespeople tempted to paint-the-picture better than it really is…because even kids can see right through you… Social cognition, skepticism and critical thinking are no long the stuff of sophisticated adults.
Research in Brief
By age five, children have learned to sniff out fact from fantasy; hesitating to believe people who make over-confident claims.
- 1) Children viewed one of two short videos of adults spouting facts:
- a) Video 1- the adult sounded unsure of the true details,
- b) Video 2- the adult sounded very confident stating false details,
- c) Children were asked whom they believed more.
- 1) It was about a 50/50 split among kids closer to age 4; however,
- 2) By the time kids neared age 5, they were more likely to believe the person who sounded unsure!
What’s it mean to you?
Everybody sells but no one has all the answers and we shouldn’t act like we do…
Success awaits those that stop selling to others and instead form a partnership to learn with them…
- 1) It has always been thought that multitasking leads to poor performance, but that idea may now be a thing of the past. Researchers have found the opposite to be true for adolescents.
- 2) During the study, it was found that young high-media multitaskers were better at weeding out distractions but performed worse when asked to focus on a single task. Low multitaskers were less able to filter out distractions but seemed to focus better on single tasks.
- 3) The study shows that people who have grown up with a lot of different media devices have developed an improved working memory and seem to perform better in distracting environments.
What do you think this is going to affect as younger generations join the workforce?
Have you ever wondered why you choose the friends you choose, like the people you like, marry the people you marry?
Instinctively, we’d probably answer by thinking about all the good things we see in those we hold closest – personality, values, interests but what about the bad stuff? Can negative feelings or experiences bond us?
- - New research suggests that pain may actually bring people together and act as “social glue” for groups of people who have suffered the pain together. And this conclusion actually makes sense—think about the relational bonds soldiers create from common experience.
- - 54 study participants were assigned either a painful or non-painful group task, like submerging their hands in cold ice water to locate and deposit medal balls into underwater containers (painful) or doing the same task in room temperature water (no big deal).
- - Post task, the participants were asked to rank how close they felt to the others in their group. And while the two groups didn’t show a difference in positive or negative emotion, they did show significant difference in feelings of group bonding.
- - A continuation of the study showed that the groups that went through pain together were much more motivated to cooperate, as a group, during other subsequent challenges as well.
Can’t wait to hear how you feel about this topic…
What do you think?
Is your job painful enough as is?
1) New research has linked higher levels of physical activity with superior academic performance among grade-schoolers.
2) More activity at recess correlated with reading prowess and involvement in organized sports added up to arithmetic superiority.
3) Interestingly, the results didn’t seem to matter much amongst the females in the study. Are girls generally more active to begin with? Less innately competitive? Or just naturally smarter all around?
- Maybe it’s time to get out of our offices, get up off our collective Xbox-es, turn off SharkTank and move around a little…
- Maybe my first boss was wrong when he said, “Never mistake activity for achievement!” But you can’t blame him–he wasn’t a girl.
Always look forward to hearing from you…write me and tell me your thoughts…
Researchers examined 500 million tweets (that’s right a whole day’s worth for Justin Bieber) to develop algorithms with the power to predict behavior–hours in advance.
- A standard social media post includes when you posted, who you’re with, where you are, etc.
- Algorithms applied to social media data may allow researchers to predict what you are planning next—even before you do it.
There’s always been a fine line between solid, preparatory relational research and being downright creepy but that won’t stop the steady drumbeat of capitalism! Many companies are exploring new ways to capitalize on your social media habits.
- Data from your toll-way EZ-pass may help predict when and where you’ll be parking your car – or at least the managers of the New York State Thruway think so.
- Xerox is also working to apply the concept to call center service…“What if you called a help line and they knew why you’d called before you said a word?”
Oh… And don’t even think about that thing – the thing you haven’t thought of yet – the thing you shouldn’t do – because someone, somewhere, may already know what you’ll have in mind…
Always look forward to hearing from you…write me and tell me your thoughts…
A friend of mine, who is Senior IT Executive in Mexico City, wrote me recently asking the age-old question, do salespeople and marketers sell or do customers buy?
We’ve asked this question to hundreds of sales people around the globe and here’s the consensus:
- Nobody likes to be sold anything and most everyone loves to buy stuff,
- When we are being sold something, our defenses are up and we typically experience some degree of buyer’s remorse after we make the purchase,
- BUT buying something is a real treat–everyone loves getting new stuff, having the latest gadget!
- If the buyer feels in control and co-develops the solution with the seller — chances of sales success skyrocket.
WHAT’S THE BIG TAKEAWAY?
…Give your PowerPoint presentations a rest and pick up a dry erase marker. Stop presenting and start co-creating. Sketch out your offer/project/idea with the person considering it.
Co-creation is in!
Are you confident, over confident or just lying to yourself?
New research suggests that over-confident people are viewed by others as more able and talented (even if they aren’t).
1. Students were asked to predict grades for themselves AND other students. The results?…
- - Students that predicted higher grades for themselves were also expected to have higher grades by the other students, even if they really did terribly, and
- - Those that were under confident were under rated.
2. The study’s author put it best, “…people don’t always reward the most accomplished individual but rather the most self-deceived.”3. Other notable outcomes…the overconfident among us are also:
- - More likely to take risks, and
- - Tend to PROMOTE other over-confident people (there’s a recipe for organizational success)!
Why We Do What We Do: Habits…Why are They so Hard to Change?
1. About 40% of what you do every day is pretty much the same things, in the same situations, as you did yesterday… and the day before that and the day before that.
2. We establish patterns of behavior that allow us to reach our goals and then we do it again…wash rinse and repeat.
3. In a recent study participants were given the tough task of tasting popcorn (hard work!), and as expected, preferred fresh popcorn over stale popcorn. However, when given the popcorn in a movie theater they ate just as much of the stale popcorn as they did the fresh.
4. So if you want to change a bad habit?
- - Change Environmental Cues for Existing Habits: someone who moves or changes jobs has the perfect opportunity to remove old cues, or if eating healthier is the goal – rearrange your fridge so the junk food is somewhere else,
- - Allow for Time to Make the Change, Repetition is Key: it can take up to 254 days to form a new habit; and
- - Link Good Habits Together: if you want to floss more, make brushing your teeth always the cue for flossing after.
Studies have shown that personality plays an important part in exchanging knowledge. Adam Grant at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, created a personality measure to determine people’s natural tendency toward interpersonal knowledge exchange. He found that most people can be classified into one of three groups: givers, matchers and takers:Givers:
not only share more information they also tend to share more important information,
tend to keep important information to themselves,
(you guessed it) are in between and see information exchange as a tit-for-tat strategy.
WHICH ONE ARE YOU?
AND HOW CAN YOU USE THIS MODEL?
Salespeople: Mastering this model might come in handy when trying to get info from clients…
Managers: May realize that it’s not enough to simply provide knowledge management tools, but to also keep in mind the personalities and interaction styles of their employees…
Husbands & Wives: I’ll leave those implications to you…
Until next time…Stay connected!
1. A study in the journal Psychology and Aging has shown substantial differences in brain function throughout the day for older adults.
2. A group of younger adults (aged 19-30) and a group of older adults (aged 60-82) participated in a series of memory tests with built in distractions. During the test, each participant’s brain was scanned to show which areas were activating. During the 1-5pm test, older adults were 10% more likely to get distracted. However, they performed noticeably better during the morning test and were even shown to activate the same areas of the brain that the young adults did.
3. This information shows that as a person ages, they are better able to focus and ignore distractions in the morning than in the afternoon; suggesting that more mentally-challenging tasks be scheduled earlier in the day.
Food for thought regarding when and what you talk about, at what time of the day, and with whom–depending on age (started sounding like Dr. Seuss there for a minute!)