30 December 2007

Neutral Beta

"If you can react the same way to winning and losing, that's a big accomplishment. That quality is important because it stays with you the rest of your life, and there's going to be a life after tennis that's a lot longer than your tennis life." Chris Evert

Nobody is ever a loser, because everyone wins somehow. It's the thought that counts.

When a task is assigned, the immediate reaction is to complete the task flawlessly in order to guarantee success. Why people want success? There are two major reasons. First, people like to win. Win gives hope and saves face. Second, people are afraid of losing. Losing brings feelings of disappointment and embarrassment.

If the project succeeds, it is then seen as success. However, it is only a success in the result, but not necessarily in the process. It can produce positive deliverables experience ultimately, but if during the process, it is filled up with negative people experience, it is an unhappy win. Just like war. No country can win a war without suffering no casualties. Every game won comes at a cost, either to the player or the opponent. How difficult it is to win without fighting?

If the project fails, it of course does not lead to success, because a failure is a failure. Nobody welcomes failure because it is like the angel of death. There is no use crying over split milk. But, with death comes new life. It is at least a lesson learned, and helps prevent a repeat of similar errors, which then improve the probability of success in the future. Although it is a negative deliverables experience, if the process is filled with positive people experience, everyone in the project still enjoys a happy loss.

If won, be happy. Even if lost, stay happy.

Stay neutral to winning and losing.

25 December 2007

Merry Christmas

"Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas." Calvin Coolidge

Merry Christmas.

Christmas is originally a Christian holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus, but it is now the largest annual economic stimulus for many nations in the world. Christmas is no longer Christmas, but a season for gift exchange.

Is it because of Santa Claus? Or is it because of marketing? But then is there any relationship between Santa Claus and marketing? Is Santa Claus another marketing tool created by marketers?

Why consumers need an excuse to buy? Why everyone needs Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Thanksgiving, Easter and other festivals to show others that he/she cares about them?

Love does not need a reason.

“Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking.
It is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.”
I Corinthians 13:4-8

Happy New Year. May the best of your past be the worst of your future.

The article is also available on www.customerthink.com/blog/merry_christmas.

21 December 2007

Do You Really Know How To Sell?

"Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman - not the attitude of the prospect." W Clement Stone

Everyone sells.

Leaders sell visions. Managers sell execution plans. Staff sell abilities.

But, does everyone know how to sell?

Sure everyone does. Selling happens every second in every part of the world. (Even this article is selling an idea to whoever is reading it now!)

But, what is selling?

Selling is an act of persuading someone that an idea is a good one and likely to be successful.

If selling is so important, how effective does everyone sell?

That is the key question.

Rudyard Kipling developed 5W1H to help trigger ideas and solve problems, and this method can also apply to sales approach. The trick is the sequence of 5W1H.

The first step of every sales cycle is to identify the right person, or WHO. It is a waste of resources to discover halfway that the contact person is not the person-in-charge, or decision maker.

The second step is WHY. Why the customer should listen to you, but not someone else given the fact that the functional aspects of all deliverables are actually homogenous. The differentiation lies only in the emotional side.

The third step is to evaluate the values that are being offered to the customer, or WHAT. Values can only be maximized by listening to and discovering customer’s needs.

The fourth step is to find a way to implement the solution effectively and efficiently, or HOW, which then includes WHEN, WHERE, and the lost honest serving man, HOW MUCH.

Although there is no best practice, "well begun, half done."

The article is also available on www.customerthink.com/blog/do_you_really_know_how_sell.

20 December 2007

How Well Do You Listen?

"The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn't being said." Peter Drucker

Everything is about give and take. Takers cannot take forever without giving, because givers expect return. When takers take things for granted, and have no intention to produce any return, givers will quit. This is true in almost every situation, in particular, sales.

In every sale, salespeople usually talk more and listen less. But, talking is giving, and listening is taking. If people have the tendency to take rather than give, then salespeople should actually listen more and talk less. After all, everyone has two ears and one mouth; everyone should listen twice as much as he/she speaks. It goes against nature that salespeople talk more than they listen.

So, why salespeople have difficulties listening? First, people tend to think faster than they listen. Second, they believe that they are offering values to customers by doing 80% of the talking. However, without a thorough understanding of what the customers want, how is it possible for the salespeople to come up with solutions that cater to their actual needs, emotionally and rationally?

Top salespeople know how to control when and what to talk.

How to crack Drucker’s code? How to hear what isn’t being said?

Learn to listen, the vital and necessary skill for success.

When was the last time you listened, but not heard?

The article is also available on www.customerthink.com/blog/how_well_do_you_listen.

19 December 2007

Personality Beta

"A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes.” Mahatma Gandhi

To identify yourself as right or left brain person:

1. Hold your hands together, as if you were praying. Look at your hands. If you see left thumb is below the right thumb, you are Left Brain. If your right thumb is below the left thumb, then you are Right Brain.

2. Fold your arms in front of you (as if you are angry)
If your right arm is above left arm, then you are Left Brain. If your left arm is above right arm, then you are Right Brain.

Based on 1+2 (order important), below is the interpretation of your personality:

Right-Left: Considerate, traditional, indirect type

Can instinctly read other's emotion, and respond friendly by natures. Although not very into taking intiatives in moving forward, but this person will always take a step back in supporting others. Stable personality and considerate, give others a being protected feeling. But the weakness is they cannot say no; regardless how unwilling they are, they will take care of others.

Right-Right: Loves Challenges Type

Straight forward. Once they decided on one thing, will take action right away. Very curious, and love challenges. Dare to face dangers without thinking through (sometimes foolishly). Their weakness is they don't listen to others, will filter in only what whey want to hear in a conversation, and very subjective. However, because of their straightforward attitude, they tend to be fairly popular.

Left-Left: Dedicated, Cold, Perfectionist

Very logical in all aspects. The only way to defeat (or win over) him/her is through reasons. Has a lot of prides, and feeling strongly about doing the right thing. If they are your friends, they are very trustworthy. However, if they are your opponets, they will be very tough to deal with. Because they can be very "anal" as a perfectionist, they usually leave a bad impression of being hard to deal with when first met.

Left-Right: Likes to Take Care of Others, Leader Type

Has a cool and keen observation ability to see through situations, yet still can be considerate in others needs. Because of their cool and calm nature, and strong sense of responsibility, they tend to become head of a group. Popular among people. However, they may not be able to help themselves in meddling because they want to take care of others too much. Very concerned about how others view them, and always on alert.


Forget about the combination. Reread Gandhi's quote.