Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Define what you want to Create your communication

Have you cross-pollinated the focused techniques of Internet Marketing? Regardless who you read or listen to, the basic idea is that every email, every page, every communication should point the recipient to one action. Focus on the specific step you want your reader to take.

This is also true for business communication in general. If you go into a meeting or a telephone conversation without a specific result in mind, that’s exactly what you’re going to get! Nothing specific—or more likely you’ll get nothing at all. The principal of pick an outcome and plan to create it is another TOP Success Strategy. (No, I don’t know how many we’ll have at the end of the cycle, so wait for the summary article!)

Most of us are so busy we don’t have time to drive aimlessly through our business activities. Sure, hop in the car and cruise around for a break, out of curiosity, or because you’ve got a great convertible. When you’re aimless about your business activities, you pay the price, but it gets worse than that. Your clients pay the price.

People want value. They want help, impact, results. Curiosity with a purpose is completely different than just wide open curiosity. If you’re not honed in on results, clients vote with their feet, their pocketbooks.

I want to be clear that sometimes the result or outcome you’re focused on is simply continuing the conversation. Say you meet someone for the first time and you’re not sure if they are a good match for your service as either a client or a referral partner. The reason to have the conversation is obtaining permission to keep talking. So adapt your questions and responses accordingly.

As the conversations continue, maybe your objective becomes signing someone up for a program or package. You’ve found out they have a need you can meet and they are someone you’re actually willing to work with (work is more fun when you have clients you like to work with). So once again, you focus your curiosity and conversational skill on creating the experiencing of both the need for and the outcome of working with you.

If you don’t know what outcome you want while connecting with this person, it’s easy to be distracted, to communicate in a way that confuses your listener, and undermines your desire to serve.

The next time you’re going to pick up the phone or enter a meeting, pick one thing you want to get out of the process. Even if you have smaller goals, articulate out loud or on paper that single over-arching objective of the event. Then focus all your attention on listening for clues regarding that objective and responding to questions that also lead that way. Let the others wait, rest or fade away.

In this world of information overload, choice proliferation, smaller resources, and compressed time, your focus will be appreciated and may very well make the difference between moving forward with a new client or treading water until you’re exhausted.

Pick your single objective for each encounter and then design your actions and words to move in that direction. You might find out the other person or people don’t agree: information just as useful as getting what you desire. Whether you need to make a list for the event or can hold it in your head, choosing a single outcome is a fast, simple way to boost your success.

Wishing you Success & Heart,

Heidi Sue

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