How to Get Out of An Embarrassing Predicament

Embarrassed

We’ve all done it. Called someone by the wrong name. Slipped and fell on the ice when entering the building. Lost our train of thought when talking with a customer.

What do you do in an embarrassing situation? You can pretend it never happened and take no responsibility for it. Psychologists have found observers expressed dislike for the individual who does this.

You can confidently try to remedy the situation. Observers are unfavorable to anyone who maintains their aura of self-confidence.

Or you can express your embarrassment and try to fix the situation. Observers best like those who show their embarrassment and find those people endearing. They’ve seen themselves in similar situations and feel the pain.

When it happens, use embarrassment to your advantage. Maybe get a laugh out of it. People will see you as vulnerable and human and quickly bond with you.

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The Mosquito Elevator Speech

A Mosquito feeding on blood

Mosquitoes have a lesson for salespeople: make the customers itch. Sure, the tiny gnats with hypodermic noses could brag about how small they are, how fast they can be in and out, and how stealth they are. But they don’t. They just do what they do best. Make you itch. And then scratch that itch.

There are several ways salespeople can design their “elevator speeches”. You can brag about yourself, product, and company. You can list your customers. Spit out your prices. But, like the gnat, you’re just an annoyance.

Be like the mosquito. Stick it to ’em. Ask them about problems you know they’re likely to have and watch them squirm.

A sales trainer might ask, “How many of your people didn’t meet quota last month?” A banker might ask, “How much are you paying in hidden monthly fees that you don’t even understand?” Sell advertising? How about “Would you like a foolproof way to measure the leads and sales you get from your advertising?” What if you’re a staffing rep calling on a commercial account? “Could the employee candidates being sent to you be better qualified so you don’t waste countless hours doing interviews going nowhere?”

The question becomes your elevator speech because you’re talking about what makes you different. Even better, prospects are talking about their problems they need to solve.

The prospects can either continue itching, or scratch the itch. Their choice. But you get their attention.

Warm Calling? Who Do You Think You’re Kidding?

During a break in our Cleveland seminar, an owner told me I should change the name of our seminar from Cold Calling for Cowards® to “How to Make Warm Calls”. He stresses to his salespeople to think of their calls as being warm calls and not cold calls to make the process more fun.

Uh-huh.

Couple of things.

First, the title of the seminar has brought in over 150,000 attendees. Why? The title is emotional. People identify with the feeling.

Second, cold calling isn’t fun. It works. But it isn’t fun. Cold calling sucks and changing the name isn’t going to take the dread out of the process. Just like the rose, cold calling is still cold calling by any other name.

The truth about cold calling? Those who actually do it know what I’m talking about.

It’s Okay to Be a Coward When Cold Calling

People ask why I call my seminars and book Cold Calling for Cowards®. Here is an excerpt from my book explaining the reason behind the use of the word “coward”:

“Dr. Viktor Frankl was an Austrian, psychiatrist – and Jewish. Dr. Frankl and his sister would be the only two from his family to survive the German death camps. At the end of the war he wrote the book, Man’s Search for Meaning.

“Dr. Frankl created the word logotherapy. He’s also the father of the phrase paradoxical intention, which is what logotherapy means. His concept says that it seems the more you want something, the more elusive it becomes. The harder you try to grasp the prize, the more slippery it becomes. He said you can actually use this concept to your advantage, especially when it comes to physical sensations.

“For example, in the morning you’re staring at that 300 pound phone, knowing you need to make your cold calls. Your hands begin to shake. Perspiration forms on your brow. Your breathing is rushed. Your voice squeaks. You surrender to your fears. You can’t do it. You suddenly remember the report that’s due next week. (Sales managers know that if they have paperwork that needs to be completed, just tell their salespeople to cold call.) You’ll make your calls tomorrow.

“No you won’t. Who are you kidding?

“Use Dr. Frankl’s paradoxical intention to overcome your fears.

“When you’re cold calling, get a 3×5 card and write the word COWARD on it. Try to be a coward when you call the people. Try to physically shake. Try to hyperventilate. Try to have your mind go blank. The funny thing is, the harder you try, the calmer you get. Paradoxical intention.”

To learn more and order a copy visit www.FootInTheDoor.com.

What Your Body Is Whispering to Me

The following is an excerpt from Selling Doesn’t Come with Instructions – 45 ways to put it together:

There is a fascination with reading body language. Women are much better than men because men don’t have the sensitivity to see the contradictions between the verbal and non-verbal clues.

But if you want to hone your skills, here are two things you can do as you’re reading someone. (A great place to practice is at a crowded restaurant as you’re watching other diners.)

First, select just one person in the group and say silently to yourself, “Describe what that person is doing right now.” Did she suddenly lean forward, arch her eyebrows and smile? Or did she quickly lean back, cross her arms and knit her eyebrows?

Second, ask yourself, “What did those three gestures whisper about how she feels towards the person she’s talking with?”

You’ll be surprised to know that you know more than you know you know.

To learn more and to order your book today, visit www.FootInTheDoor.com.