Confidence goes a long way

Isn’t it amazing how confidence can go a long way in selling and coaching.  Let me explain further…

I don’t know how they managed to convince me, but last, month I escorted the two main women in my life – my wife and 9 year old daughter – into Cheltenham shopping for shoes. 4 hours later after trying on countless pairs in myriads of stores in every corner of Cheltenham, my daughter settled on a pair of shoes to buy which she kept on as we walked back to the car.

After warning her that she needed to wear them in, sure enough as we approached the car, she began to grumble that they were hurting her. My confident answer “shoes need to be worn in first before they get comfortable otherwise you’ll get a blister.”

Later that day, I’d finished putting together some flat pack furniture from Ikea and due to the fact that I don’t have workman’s hands, I felt a nasty blister appear on my thumb from excessive use of the screwdriver.

“Ow Daddy that looks painful” said Bethan, “I know,” I began, “It’s because the screwdriver is new and it hasn’t been worn in properly”

Expecting a “Daddy don’t be silly”, I got an agreeable smile and “I see Daddy, just like my shoes…poor Daddy”

You see the reason that Bethan believed me, apart from it linking in with that morning’s conversation, was that I appeared confident. Years of training people I guess, but to appear confident I always:

  • Use open body language
  • Look relaxed
  • Put on a straight face
  • Lower my voice tone and
  • Slow my words down a tad

And it works everytime as long as the argument is logical and precise.

So where’s this useful for you in sales and coaching?  Quite simply in most places.  Put on the confident act when you:

  • Want to get through the gatekeeper to talk to your important new client
  • Want to get put through at reception
  • Want to close the client for the business you’re selling
  • When interviewing people for a position in your company, as confidence is attractive
  • When giving frank feedback to your team members
  • When agreeing tough objectives with a team member
  • When asking for a raise

The list goes on doesn’t it?  Don’t over do it, but learn to put on a confident act and this will help you in many parts of your role.

But what of Bethan thinking that screwdrivers need wearing in? Of course I levelled with her; after all she might think Daddy is a real silly Billy! Problem is she doesn’t believe anything I say now; Peter and the Wolf come to mind.