Tips and Techniques to Manage Difficult People

Posts Tagged ‘Sales’

One Tip on How to Get Your Motivation Message Across

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You probably spend a great deal of your time communicating with other people.

It could be your customers, your colleagues, your boss, and the people in your personal life.businesswoman leading presentation while audience cheers.

So the tip is – use your feelings to get your message across to other people.

Are you listening to me?

Do you ever get the impression that people are not really listening to you or understanding what you’re saying? It doesn’t matter if it’s face to face or in a more formal speech or presentation.

Most people are not particularly good listeners. They are easily distracted and interrupted by other stuff going on in their brain.

They might be:

  • Tired,
  • In a hurry,
  • Confused,
  • Physically uncomfortable,
  • Don’t understand your jargon
  • Maybe just thinking about what they will say next.

So if you want to get your motivation message across, then it’s important to take into account all of these points. And it’s also important to ensure you are making the best of your speaking skills.

It’s all about the body

The problem is that the words you use, although essential, can be contradicted by your tone of voice and your body language.

Many people are now familiar with the results of research conducted by Dr Albert Mehrabian. This

This tells us that the impact of a message is dependent 7% on the words we use, 38% tone and a whacking great 55% body language.

I’ve read articles that take issue with these figures, suggesting that words are more important and have a much greater impact than Dr Mehrabian suggests.

I wouldn’t be prepared to put any figures on these three aspects of communication, however:

I am totally convinced that, to get your message across, how you look, and how you sound, are far more important than what you say.

It was so exciting – not

Recently I conducted a one to one training session in selling and presentation skills for a director of a small computer software company. A video camera was used to record this director’s sale pitch to a potential customer, a role played by me.

When I replayed this recording, my director client was horrified to watch his presentation. In his pitch he used words such as, ‘Young exciting company – staff with lots of enthusiasm for their product – lots of  motivation, energy and passion for what they are doing.’

The only thing was that he, the person in the video, had about as much excitement, enthusiasm, energy and passion as a plate of cold porridge.

He was saying the words but they just weren’t convincing. He was dull monotone and boring, and he knew it.

The good thing was, that once he’d realised it, he could do something about it.

Don’t be shy

On occasion, people say to me. ‘I am as I am; I’m a quieter sort of person. I can’t leap up and down and get excited about something even though I feel it inside.’

My answer to these people is, ‘Don’t change your personality, but do make a slight change to your behaviour.

Turn up the energy a little bit, put a bit more power in the enthusiasm, and warm up the passion just a tad more.

If you were to ask these same people about their football team, their children, or their hobby, then just watch them get fired up – or, at least, get a little bit warmer.

Honey baby

One quiet unassuming chap held me spellbound one day telling me about his hobby of beekeeping. It wasn’t so much what he was saying but how he was describing it.

His eyes were shining, he was speaking quickly and he was using his hands to describe this subject which he had now made very interesting.

He was buzzing (sorry, couldn’t resist that)

Here’s a little exercise for you

Say the following sentence out loud (okay wait till there’s no one around) There are 7 words; so say the sentence 7 times emphasising a different word in turn.

‘I didn’t say you stole my pen!’

Would you believe there are 7 meanings to this sentence depending on which word you emphasise.

Make it happen

Other people will respond more to your feelings than to what you actually say.

So if you want to get your message across to your employees, your customers, colleagues, or your family, then show more of how you feel.

And you do that through your tone of voice and your body language.

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7 Simple Steps to a Self-Motivating Team

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‘How do I motivate my staff?’ That’s the question I’m most often asked by business owners and managers. They want some instant fix, a silver bullet that improves staff motivation overnight. But as we all know, life isn’t like that.business winners 1

I’ve been there

I understand why this question is being asked, I was a manager for fifteen years, and I appreciate the challenges managers face every day with their people. The answer I give is – ‘You don’t motivate your team, you create the environment where they motivate themselves!’

Generate momentum

Effective motivation is intrinsic, it has to come from within. There’s no instant fix; it’s an ongoing day to day process of small actions that build a highly motivated team.

It’s like pushing a heavy boulder, you need some initial effort to get the process going, but once you’ve done that, it takes a lot less effort to keep it moving.

7 Steps to success

  1. Spend some quality time with each of your team.

Talk with them and find out how they’re doing on a personal level, and a business level. Give them feedback; tell them when they do something well, and tell them when not so well. Use descriptive statements, not generalisations such as ‘well done!’

  1. Listen to what they have to say, and show that you’re listening.

Turn away from the computer, and switch off the phone. Keep good eye contact, use open body language, and make noises that indicate that you’re listening. Empathise with their personal problems and provide solutions to business problems, wherever possible.

  1. Coach them on the job, to do even better.

Remember that coaching is a two-way process with your team member; helping them to find solutions to job-related or personal problems

  1. Find ways to make their job more interesting.

Vary the jobs they do, give them some of your tasks, and give them more responsibility. Ask them to train or mentor another member of the team.

  1. Show that you appreciate them, and have some fun.

Give the occasional reward for no particular reason. Some time off work, a personal thank you letter, cakes or sweets, flowers on a birthday or a bottle of wine. Suggest a team member takes their partner out for a meal and charge it to expenses.

  1. Keep them informed.

Let them know what’s happening in the company, and how the business is doing. And provide relevant information on new products or services. Give them the feeling that what they do contributes to the success of the organisation.

  1. Trust and believe in them.

Show them what you need them to do, and let them get on with it. Take risks; don’t keep supervising. Set up parameters that allow them to make decisions. If they keep coming to you with questions, don’t provide an answer; ask them what they would do and support their response.

Dare to care

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Available from Amazon and all bookstores worldwide

Your team members want to know that you care about them, that you’re interested in them from a personal, and business point of view. They want to believe that you trust them, and want them to succeed.

If you can create that environment; then you’ll have a happy and motivated team that make a positive contribution to your business?

You can listen or download below.

 

8 Benefits of Spending Time with Your Team

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  1. You get to understand them betterinterview 3

Almost every employee wants to know that their manager is genuinely and positively interested in them. They may not always give that impression by their demeanour but trust me – they want to know you care; they want acceptance from you.

If they know you care about them, then your relationship will be much more productive.

  1. You find out how they’re handling the job

As well as getting to know the individual members of your team on a human or personal basis, you need to get to know them on a business basis.

How are they getting along with the job? And it’s not a matter of asking – ‘How’s the job going?’ If you ask that, then you may get a list of complaints or you may just get – ‘It’s all going fine.’

You need to be more specific in your questions and encourage descriptive answers.

  1. It helps you deal with problems

One of the main benefits of spending time with your team is that it lets them know you’re there to help with problems. Of course, you’re not there necessarily to solve their problems but to coach them to solve their problems. 

  1. They get to know you 

Your team will want to know about you at both a personal and business level. Again, that doesn’t mean sharing your intimate thoughts, but it’s similar to the things you want to know about them.

Even although team members don’t ask you about yourself – tell them. Reveal bits and pieces about yourself over a period of time.

What you’re really saying is – ‘I’m human, I’m like you, and I experience the same situations.’

  1. You have the opportunity to give them feedback and coach them

This is one of the most important things the successful manager can do. This is your opportunity to tell them the things that you do like about their performance and also the things you don’t like.

Too often managers leave feedback until a performance review and often these are only once or twice a year.

  1. They have the opportunity to give you feedback

Now this may make you feel a bit nervous, and it certainly can be scary when you’re not used to it, but it is very motivational.

If you create a healthy open environment in your team then they should feel comfortable giving feedback to you. It may not always be what you want to hear but it can certainly improve your relationship with them.

  1. It encourages opinions and ideas to flow from them

It’s often the case that members of your team have positive suggestions that will benefit the team, the business and you.

However, they may not always be willing to seek you out and tell you about them. Perhaps they may feel foolish or embarrassed in front of their colleagues.

If you’re spending time with them, then this is the ideal opportunity for them to give you their thoughts. Of course, you sometimes have to dig this out and encourage it.

  1. It allows you to explain the company’s mission and the individual’s role in this.

When you spend time with each individual it gives you the opportunity to explain how the business is going and how the team is performing. This is often done at a team brief and that’s okay.

However in a one to one situation you can discuss in more depth and encourage ideas and feedback from them as described above.

Team leaders and managers, need to get up off their chair, or out of their office and spend time with their team.

That is, if they want motivated and engaged staff.

And if you want to know more, send me an email at alan@themotivationdoctor.com

And if you want to read more –

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Why Soft Skills Are Not Soft

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I must be honest, I hate the expression “soft skills”. I know that it’s used to differentiate from hard skills, such as the 20130628-1652591technical ability to do a particular job.

So what exactly are soft skills?

Do they include the skill to answer the phone in a warm and friendly manner?

Or perhaps deal with a difficult customer, empathise, and help them to get what they want.

Maybe even sell the customer a product or service.

Perhaps for managers, they include the ability to listen to their employees, and to empathise with their situation.

And to give feedback that reinforces good behaviour, or changes not so good behaviour

Don’t be a softy

Well, in my book, there is nothing soft about these skills.

These are the skills that will decide if a customer buys from you, or one of your competitors.

These are the skills that will ensure the customer comes back to your business, and perhaps recommends your product or service to other people.

These are the skills that may ensure your customer pays your higher price, and pays you on time.

Hard skills can get the job done. Soft skills make the difference between a job that gets done, and a job that gets done exceedingly well.

So-called soft skills are all about motivated and engaged employees, more customers, more sales, and more profits.

Soft skills get the sales and make the profits.

Maybe not so soft – eh!

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Motivational Management Masterclass for Hospitality Managers

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What you need to remember about team motivation

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Don’t know if you’re a soccer fan or not, but it was hard to miss that  Jose Mourinho lost his job as Chelsea Football businesswoman leading presentation while audience cheers.Club manager last week.

This was just seven months after he led them to the Premier League title. But this season, they have lost nine of their games out of sixteen, and are in danger of being relegated.

So, what went wrong?

Two level interactions

If you’ve ever attended one of my training sessions or heard me speak, you’ll know that I’m always on about the human/business model.

This is in relation to dealing with members of your team or customers.

In any interaction that we have with other people, be it written or verbal, it can take place on two levels.

These interactions can be between the people you work with – your staff – your colleagues. Or between you and your customers or clients. Or it could be between you and your partner, your children, or any other people in your life.

Interactions will always take place on a business level.

For example – you walk into a coffee shop, ask for a coffee and that’s what you get.

Or – you ask a member of your team to do a particular task.

Or – you deal with a customer enquiry and give them what they want.

Make it better

All of the above are business interactions. However, if you can add a human level to any of these situations, then it will make the interactions more positive.

You’ll build a happy and engaged team , you’ll have happier customers, and your coffee break will be much better.

Is it worth it?

Many people fail to realise the importance and the value of human level interactions.

Some managers think it’s about being nicey-nicey and touchy-feely, and they often see it as a sign of weakness.

Dealing with people on a human level is about – listening skills, using the right words, being aware of your tone of voice and your body language.

It’s about being empathetic and accepting that other people may see things differently from you.

Does Jose Mourinho know about the business side of football, the tactics, the training, how the game must be played?

I’m sure he does.

Does he know about all the human aspects of dealing with players, and how to motivate them?

I’m not sure he does.

Perhaps he should have read this…41tl4u-h9zl-_uy250_

How To Manage Difficult People Audio Summation

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New Seminar – Motivational Management Masterclass

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How Do You React to Annoying Behavior?

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Recently, when I was at my home in the Philippines, I awoke one morning to find one of the dogs sleeping on the sofa. All curled up, nice and comfy having nice doggy dreams. (She’s the one on the left in the photo of Motivation 247792_3957018401534_256628686_n (640x480) (440x330)Doc jogging club.)

So whispered in her ear – ‘Please wake up and get off the sofa CAS.’

And if you believe that, you’re as daft as me!

However, when placed in a situation of annoyance, shall we say; do you:

  1. Think or do you react?
  2. Allow other people (or dogs) to decide your behavior?

You probably answered ‘Think’ and ‘No’ to these questions, but do you ever catch yourself saying:

‘She makes me really mad!’

‘His behavior really annoys me!’

‘How dare she speak to me like that!’

‘If he thinks I’m just going to do what he wants!’

Is it possible, that in making any of these statements, that:

1, you’re reacting and 2, allowing other people to decide your behavior?

Does the other person make you mad, or do you decide to get mad?

Do you react to what a customer, or a colleague or your boss, does or says to you, or do you think before you take action?

You’re the boss

Before you achieve anything in your life, you need to take charge of your thinking. When you take charge of your thinking, you take charge of your life.

Thinking is all about communicating with yourself; it’s all the little things you say to yourself while you’re awake.

(Just don’t say them out loud or the men with the white coats will take you away!)

That’s a lot of thinking

I read somewhere that the average human has 12,367 thoughts every day. Now, don’t ask me how they worked that one out, but let’s just accept that we do a lot of thinking and communicating with ourselves. The thing is that, 70 percent of these thoughts or internal communications are negative and encourage negative behaviour.

How you think, your relationship with yourself is what decides how well you communicate with your customers, your colleagues, your team members, your boss, and the dog.

The most important relationship you’ll ever have is the one you have with yourself, so you’ve got to get that right.

Henry Ford said, (he was the guy who started all the traffic chaos) – ‘Thinking is the hardest work there is, that’s why so few people do it.’

Always on time

I’ve always had a thing about good timekeeping; it’s something that’s been programmed into my brain. If you agree to meet me at 8.30 in the morning, I‘ll be there at 8.20; I will always do my utmost be on time.

So I used to get annoyed when a member of my team would show up late for a meeting or an appointment with me.

When I got annoyed I’d get stressed, I would react, and end up saying something that I regretted later. So I learned to start thinking about the situation and try to see it from their point of view. I decided not to react or let my programming run my brain.

That doesn’t mean to say I ignored the lateness or did nothing about it; I thought very carefully about what I wanted to say, and spoke to the team member about how we would resolve this situation.

Don’t get stressed

The point is this – I’m not prepared to allow that team member’s behavior to run my mind.

Getting annoyed and stressed is not good for your health and it isn’t a productive way to motivate your staff, deal with your customers or handle your mother-in-law.

You have to decide who runs your mind; is it you or is it someone else?

So – think about that!

Woof!

 

How to Avoid Alienating Customers

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I know this may come out as a bit of a whinge. However, it really saddens me to see organisations who talk a good game about customer service, and then make a real hash of it.

The story

Two weeks ago I ordered a sewing machine from a company called Lazada.sewing machine

According to their website – Lazada is Southeast Asia’s number one online shopping and selling destination.

Of course they are number one, because Amazon have no presence there. I suspect that is because there is no delivery or postal system that would meet the Amazon standard.

I ordered the machine for my partner in the Philippines, paid for it by credit card, and was given a delivery date.

However, a few days later, Lazada sent me an email cancelling my order because they had made a mistake with the price. I reckon the price difference was about £5 to £6.

I paid £140 for the machine, plus a transaction charge of £4.

Lazada refunded my credit card £134.

So I’m out of pocket £10 and no machine.

Okay, so this is starting to sound like a whinge, but bear with me.

My questions to people in business are

  1. Do you want customers to come back to your company and buy more products and services?
  1. Do you want customers to talk positively about your company to other people and encourage them to buy from you?
  1. Do you want customers to accept your prices and be happy to pay them?

Or –

  1. Do you want customers to never deal with your company again?
  1. Do you want customers to tell other people never to buy from your company?
  1. Do you want customers to give you hassle about your prices and be slow to pay?

We all make mistakes

In any business, mistakes will be made from time to time, but there is always the opportunity to Recover with the customer.

In this situation, Lazada should have said – ‘We messed up; we got it wrong, but we want the customer to be happy. So we will have to take a loss (if it is a loss bearing in mind the difference is £5) on this transaction. Just as long as the customer is happy and continues to deal with us.’

Business have to run at a profit, but you need customers and more of them.

Lazada send me emails every day trying to sell me more products; I dump them all.

A positive customer service story

I ordered 50 copies of my book, How to be a Motivational Manager, from Amazon in the UK. This was to be delivered to one of my clients in the Philippines.

25 of the books were delivered, but the other 25 disappeared. (What did I say earlier about distribution and postal service in that part of the world?)

I contacted Amazon, and they immediately sent another 25 books to the Philippines at no extra cost. (The missing 25 books eventually turned up back in the UK)

Now that’s what I call Recovery!

Amazon took action immediately, they took the risk that they might lose out on this, but they just wanted to keep the customer happy. As it turned out, they didn’t lose out, other than extra delivery charges, and they made me happy!

Lazada still don’t understand that, hopefully on day they will.

Alienating customers is too costly – you can avoid that by recovering well and building a positive relationship with your customer.