Dan Pink explains that selling now is different. Now, sales requires curating the massive amounts of information out there to find the most relevant and clarifying pieces. It’s part of a shift in the sales world to what Pink has called the ABCs, “Attunement, buoyancy and clarity.”
A for Attunement
There are three keys to reaching attunement, which in its simplest form means bringing yourself into harmony with individuals, groups and contexts.
- You must increase your power by reducing it. If you go into an interaction feeling like the person with the lower power, you are more likely to try to see things from the perspective of the person you are dealing with.
2. Use your head as much as your heart. Pink says to look at a sales situation from the other person’s point of view. While different from empathy, which is an emotional response based on feeling. But he argues that both are crucially important.
3. Mimicking. Use this as a means to connect with people and create a sense of trust. Be careful, but a strategic mimicking of speech patterns, affective responses or overt behaviours can deepen attachment and help your ability to move others.
B for Buoyancy
Buoyancy is the way to stay afloat in a sea of rejection.There are also three components to buoyancy, which apply before, during and after any effort to move others.
- Self-interrogative self-talk before you attempt the sale. Asking yourself whether you can or can’t do something forces you to justify the ways in which you can. This will bring to mind the reasons you are doing what you're doing and focus on achieving what you set out to do.
2. Positivity. Are you not more likely to want to purchase something from the person you liked and who was kind to you rather than from the one who made you feel bullied? This is the importance of positivity in sales.
3. Explanatory style. This comes after the fact and is the story you tell yourself to make sense of the way things worked out. This is how you explain and make sense of everything that happened
C for Clarity
The capacity to help others see their situation in different, more revealing ways and to identify problems they didn’t realize they had is one of the most important skills the “new” salesman must have. It is why one of the most important questions to ask when seeking or trying to provide clarity is “Compared to what?” Pink describes five frames you can use to provide clarity to those you are hoping to move.
- Less. Framing people’s options in ways that restrict their choices can help them see those choices more clearly.
2. Experience. People have stronger and longer-lasting emotions around experiences than material possessions.
3. Label. Answer the “compared to what question.” It can put actions or experiences into context and outline what is expected.
4. Blemished. if you bring up one negative aspect of a product after extolling many of its virtues, people are more likely to pick the “blemished” product than one that is purely positive.
5. Potential. People are more interested in and intrigued by what someone might do than what they have already done.