My wife and I recently had dinner with a dear family friend who has been an elementary school teacher for over 25 years. She was raving about a book she had just read and about the difference it was making in her classroom. The title was: Make One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions. In the book, published by Harvard Education Press, a young student describes how empowered she felt from learning this one vital skill.
It made me think: If you could make just one change in your salesforce, would it be to ask better questions?
What if your salesforce could avoid unnecessary questions?
Customers, especially the more senior ones, quickly tire of educating sales people about their business and their needs.
If your sales reps were doing their homework and gathering all the facts, this would enable you to minimize or even avoid what customers often describe as “fact finding sales interrogations” and allow customers to immediately see the value in your sales team’s questions.
What if your salesforce could ask engaging and stimulating questions?
It’s not easy to come up with engaging, thought provoking questions that stimulate productive customer conversations. If it was, every sales person would be doing it.
By taking time to plan thought provoking questions, your sales reps will be able to differentiate your company and achieve better results. These include asking for the customer’s perspective on the facts you’ve already gathered, getting the customer to share his or her concerns, and mutually exploring what could be possible.
With better question skills, your sales team could ask questions that might make the customer think of his or her business in a new way
– opening up business opportunities.
What if your salesforce really listened to understand what your customers have to say?
Your customers need to know that they are being heard. More importantly, they need to know that your sales reps understand where they are coming from. It’s not enough to just take notes and move on to the next question.
Actively building rapport and listening by displaying genuine interest, empathy, and concern are key to a customer feeling heard and understood. It’s possible for your sales team to learn how to listen and respond; thereby, demonstrating that they understand and care about their customers.
If you’re interested in learning more about the book Make One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions, here’s a link to a great little synopsis: http://hepg.org/hel-home/issues/27_5/helarticle/teaching-students-to-ask-their-own-questions_507#home
Contact us to learn more about Mandel’s proprietary tools and job aids focused on asking thought provoking questions, engaging in high-stakes conversations and planning for conversations.
Gratitude. Appreciation. Recognition. It makes you feel good. This week in the US, many will pause for a day or two to give thanks and show appreciation for the things and people we care about most. It’s no secret how appreciation benefits the person getting it—but did you know it benefits the person giving it just as much? Discover why recognition is such a powerful tool for improving relationships and wellbeing in life—and at work. Learn how to (and how NOT to) express your appreciation to others.
People in communities across the globe are adjusting to communicating while wearing masks. As we’re all experiencing, masks present both verbal and non-verbal communication challenges.Given this, we’ve prepared 5 tips for effective communications while wearing a mask, and compiled several insightful articles from leading publications on additional best practices.
Customers coming to a user conference aren’t there for the fanfare, they’re there for the expertise. If you’re an expert speaking at a user conference, you’re highly knowledgeable and passionate about your topic, but you might not be an expert at speaking in front of an audience. Here are five practical tips that you can implement right away for any upcoming speaking event.
Read the blog and learn how to make your next team offsite your most productive yet.
TED Talks have become a go-to example for how to give an engaging presentation from the big stage. They can be informative, inspiring, and often incredibly entertaining. But is the TED Talk format right for a business presentation delivered in a conference room? Probably not — but the skills used by TED Talk presenters definitely are!
Learn how to identify what goes into a successful TED Talk and how to make those skills work for you in your everyday business presentations.
Learn Mandel’s 3-step model for skillfully responding — not reacting — to tough questions with confidence and ease.
You know your scientists, engineers, and technology experts are the best around. They're proven innovators and solution providers within your organization. Why, then, is presenting to a business audience such a common challenge for technical professionals?
Learn 11 tactics your technical team can use right now to make them more effective and influential communicators for any business decision maker.
Admittedly, I've struggled to find a reliable way to help people reduce their public speaking anxiety, despite years of trying. I’ve advised people to do just about anything I could think of that might help, e.g., breathing, meditation. While I haven't found the thing that works every time for every person, there is one technique that seems to be more effective than most. Even if you've already found something that works well for you, this technique is worth trying out.
Imagine being asked to present to your entire company tomorrow. Does the idea of it make you nervous? You might be tempted to get right to work, writing every word down and committing them to memory. Now, what if I said you couldn’t memorize your talk? Whoa, wait a minute. You wonder, “How am I supposed to remember what to say?”
Find out why memorizing is a terrible idea and what you should do instead to prepare for your next presentation.
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