Every Tuesday, sales expert Andy Bounds shares his top tips to improve your sales and communications. This week’s is…
Use “serve and volley” to change behaviours
A powerful technique to help people think differently is to use what I call “serve and volley” – two questions that work as follows:
1. The serve – a simple question that everyone knows the answer to; and
2. The volley – a second, related question that provokes people into realising they need to change their mindset
For instance, I recently addressed a conference audience I knew hated networking. So, I used “serve and volley” with them, asking these two questions:
1. Do you feel uncomfortable when you are networking? (90% of the room put their hand up)
2. Do you think your discomfort is worse than other people’s? (Again, 90% put their hand up)
I then made the point: “Well, you can’t all be right. After all, you can’t all find it worse than everybody else.” Once people realised their feelings were similar to others, it was easier to improve their confidence, safe in the knowledge that they weren’t the “only one”.
1. Is your product good or bad? (Everyone says “Good”)
2. Given how good your product is, do you win as many sales as you should? (The only answer people give to this is “No”)
Conclusion: It’s not what you sell that’s the problem; it’s how you sell it. So, let’s look at how you can win the sales you should be winning.
1. Do you hate reading presenters’ wordy slides? (Everyone says “Yes”)
2. Do you use wordy slides when you’re presenting? (If you do, you are doing to others what you hate people doing to you)
Conclusion: you really ought to take some words off your slides!
See how it works? If so…
1. Might “Serve and volley” help you change people’s perceptions?
2. Do you think it’s easy to master, or not?
If your answers to these two questions were “Yes”, then “Not”…
… Think of someone’s mindset you want to shift. Then work hard to identify two related questions you can ask to get them to see things differently…
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Emma Merry(PA): +44 (0) 7900 217 929
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