Kindness Counts...
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They Don't Care What You Know Until They Know That You Care...

by Floyd Wickman

I read that this week is Random Acts of Kindness week in which we're all challenged to spread a little good will in our little corners of the world.  I like that idea, not just for a week, but all year around. As salespeople building our books of business, we're often inspired by trainers (we know a few of those!) and speakers to connect with at least one new person per day, or per week and start the process of nurturing those relationships until those folks are part of our sphere of influence.  That's a good business practice of course, as ultimately, we are in the business of people. Of making connections. And keeping in touch.  What if we took that a step further and did something nice for someone - anyone -- each day as well? Can you imagine how that might transform your life and career?

If you've known me any time at all, sat in one of our training programs, or were ever an audience member -- you've probably heard me say, “They don’t care what you know, until they know how much you care.”  That's because it is so true.  Until people get that you CARE, that they are IMPORTANT to you, most won't be jumping at a chance to work with you. You see, it's more than a motto – it's a fact and it's especially relevant when times are challenging and competition gets tough.   Why? Some agents meet that type of market, and meet every prospective buyer or seller aggressively and with dollars in their eyes.  Others focus on being the best advocate, resource and guide for their clients.  Which do you think is better received in today's world?  You bet -- it's the person who is kind. Who gets the job done -- but is kind. Who negotiates the deal -- but is respectful.  Who has amazing skills -- and uses them to foster positive relationships, rather than negative.

As professionals you should learn to show your care and concern, project your service commitment AND keep control of the sale situation.  One of the best ways to do that – is by asking QUESTIONS.  There’s so much power in questions.  They allow you to be in control and the person answering to be engaged and interested which is the key ingredient to getting them to do business with you!  I like to teach my audiences to ask what we call “wopen” questions.  That is – open questions that start with those famous five “Ws” – who, what, when, where and why.  Why?  (Glad you asked!)  Because asking open-ended questions prompts your customer to give you more than just a “yes” or “no” answer.  It draws them in, invites them to elaborate and provides you with not only a great opportunity to engage – but to listen and learn for all that valuable information that their sharing in between the lines.  Questions are a great way to gauge motivation, test the water for closing questions and find out any fears or objections they might have that would keep them from making a decision.

Like any other sales tool or technique, asking the RIGHT questions takes practice.  So, practice!  Make it part of your day – every day.  The more comfortable YOU are asking questions – the more comfortable your customers or prospects will be answering them.  Especially those closing questions.  In today’s world, you need to have courage to ASK for the business, but first step first – let your prospects and customers know and FEEL that you care.  In the manner that you speak, the tone of your voice, the body language you project, the questions you ask and the intent that you project.  Care, Courage and Questions=a great sales combination!  Let's add kindness to that equation as well.  Be the agent in the office that extends a hand to the new agent trying to learn the ropes.  Be the agent in the market that makes it a point to be out in the community doing everything possible to be the neighborhood advocate people can turn to and trust.  Be the one who other agents look up to and say, "Now that's how you conduct your business with professionalism. courtesy, and class.

Kindness counts friends. Honesty, integrity, character -- all of it counts.  When you bring your BEST self to the table every day, good things will happen, I promise.  Now, let's go see what kind of kindness we can spread around this week. Are you game?

Good luck and we’re here if you need us!

Love,

Floyd

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