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Selling is about
In short, I soon realized that three things taken for granted as
- asking questions
- let the client speak
- listen mindfully
The bad listener’s loop (and a monkey called Julio).
What you see above is the basic pattern of the habit loop, developed by Charles Duhigghas in his 2012 book “The Power of Habit”, through an interesting experiment with a monkey called Julio.
The scientist put him on a chair in a room with a screen monitor and a lever. Julio’s job was to touch the lever whenever some colored shapes appeared on the screen.
Trouble is, listening can be very difficult.
Now let’s take the poor listening habit, reflect it into the loop mentioned in Figure 1 and try to cover all three points by asking ourselves questions.
1. The routine.
- This person is too boring. I know exactly what he wants to say: it’s always the same story (sometimes this is so true, and I can picture you nodding your head).
- You start thinking about something else, like “I should answer that email in my inbox, I shall prepare myself for the important topic the CEO will discuss with me tomorrow, etc.”
- You start looking into your mobile, checking notifications as he/she keeps talking.
2. The cue.
- When my manager calls me to review the pipeline.
- When a specific person in my company (who is actually boring) starts talking about his family and his weekend picnic I am not interested at all in.
- After the lunch break, where I can’t make any efforts to listen.
- Friday at 5 PM.
3. The reward.
- Feel productive thinking about something else rather than hearing a boring story.
- Getting rid of boredom.
- Reduce the mindware effort by skipping hearing the conversation while you check on your mobile.
Wanna be a good listener? Hack the pattern.
1. Build a new routine.
2. Play with those cues.
3. Find yourself new rewards.
Sharing this practice among the sales teams spread in our offices – in Italy, Miami and Dubai – is what allows the Imagicle sales team to grow year after year, covering more and more countries and speaking more and more languages.
In the last 3 years, sales have increased by 78% worldwide. We have grown in many countries, such as the US and France, and I am happy to have played my part in the Middle East, where sales have increased by 38%.
It seems like listening is a good thing in every part of the world.