So you are talking to a prospect about, say, an annuity product. The conversation goes something like this:
- You: “Mr. Prospect, you may want to consider an annuity as part of your investment mix.”
- Prospect: “An annuity?! I just read those are terrible investments. Why would you recommend that?”
- You: “They are NOT terrible investments. Where did you read that?”
- Prospect: “I don’t remember, but they said annuities came with higher fees and more risk than people think. Are you going for fees on this?”
OK . . . let’s stop the tape for a moment. Do you see where this is heading . . . the conversation is quickly turning confrontational with the potential of even getting hostile. Here is how a psychologist would handle this situation using a very simple but powerful technique called “validation.”
That’s right! After a one year sabbatical to recharge after writing five years of weekly columns, we are tanned, rested and ready to broadcast another set of tomes on the “Art & Science of Selling Through Relationships.”
In speaking with a number of you informally, we have also changed, hopefully for the better. We are now plugged in to all social media so you can read our columns anytime, anyplace and you can easily share them with your colleagues and friends. We hope you will . . . it would be fun to take Mr. Shmooze viral and share thoughts around the world with like-minded people . . . people who do well by doing good and who love to mix the excitement of great relationships with their day-to-day work and missions.
We have also grown. We have now a staff of research assistants and a psychologist who are helping us dig deeper into relationship dynamics, including the behavior and hot buttons of our most important business partners, our buyers and customers. In the coming weeks and months, you will see some fascinating findings on turning people on, and off, and how top producers master the game of emotional connections.
In order to support this expanded initiative, we would like to ask you, for the first time, to make a donation to the Mr. Shmooze program. People tell us $20 per year is about right for 50 columns, so if you would like to help us help you, please click the button below to participate. (The columns will keep coming either way unless you decide to opt out . . . we are just hoping for a fair number of contributors to support the research and quality we pledge to maintain).
Mr. Shmooze Editorial Board
Richard Abraham, Brett Hunsaker, Dr. Christopher Croner and Miranda Toops
So here we go . . . column #1 of the new era. Enjoy!