Influential people are not born special, nor do they possess a secret talent denied to most people. Influence involves forethought and planning. Influence is deliberate.
It is a product of intention. Setting an intention creates a snow-ball effect that rolls in exactly the direction you want it to. A lack of intention will leave you at the mercy of those more prepared – and in terms of business, being at the mercy of others is a one-way path to failure.
Influence is never more important than in your sales conversations. To correctly prepare follow these four steps:
What is your ideal outcome for this conversation? Set your intention by writing down the outcome you want. The more detail you include, the more influence you will have. This definition is a road-map for your sales conversation.
How do you want your prospect to feel during the conversation? For example, if you would like your prospect to be relaxed and interested, ensure your tone of voice is friendly, your language is well thought through and easy to understand, and your body language also creates a relaxed atmosphere.
What mental and emotional state do you need to be in to achieve your intention? If you are anxious and stressed, you will create an uncomfortable atmosphere. If you are calm and inquisitive, you will influence the person you are speaking with – you are letting them know “this is a non-threatening environment and I am interested in helping you”, they can then relax and open up.
Your physical presentation is as important as your mental preparation. Are you wearing appropriate attire? Have you rehearsed your questions? Do you have professionally designed material to leave with them?
Each one of these elements helps send very distinct messages to your prospect. Each one will influence the way they think about you, how they will react to you and what the ultimate outcome for your business will be. By creating your own intentions, and preparing them meticulously you are controlling the influence and the outcome for a successful sale.