A drizzling Saturday morning and a cool breeze was like a jackpot after so many hot and hectic weeks. OJ (my significant other) and I were enjoying hot tea cherishing our old days with each sip. Specifically when I proposed him. Yep, it was me who took the first step 4 years ago 🙂
We were blushing, laughing, and pulling each other’s legs trying to rediscover our own versions to the story of our lives. The bigger question being,
Why did he take the time to say yes in the first place?
While this one is going to be a lovely spar we will enjoy all our life. There is somewhat of a reckoning I had and here I am… sharing what I think if realized could catapult conversion.
So let me ask you this
Are you a salesperson, the one to convince the customer to pay for your product/services?
Or Are you into management/strategy with inter-department stakeholders to influence?
You may be a founder/leader whose role is to build and drive polymathic, cross-functional teams while scaling the business.
Whether you identify with any of the above or find yourself in an anecdotally similar role. You may have noticed the best of your customer also generally hesitate to say yes in the first place, whether you are selling an insurance policy or buying her used car. Whether you are pitching in a leadership development programme to the management or even if you need to get buy-in from your engineering team to ship a new feature sooner than they think. There is usually some initial inertia, a pushback Isn’t it?
Why is it so?
Let me reveal my thoughts about it by sharing the reason why OJ took all that time despite us both realizing strongly about where we were headed.
The reason was not having a noncommital sense of doubts, excuses, or a FOMO.
Rather, the unsaid reason was an expected change in the regular smooth ongoing life. Yup, the good old’ Change.
Similarly, what you may perceive as your customer’s procrastination may just be an innate sense of resisting change.
We as humans hate change when it means we need to commit, we are unclear or unsure. We wanna delay the decision, take second, third opinions. We seek reassurance or justification and try to prepare ourselves to accept what lies on the other side but is not guaranteed. We doubt our decisions and second guess with a fear of failure or ill-preparedness. Typical examples of this human psyche are decision hills like Do I have to make this payment right now? is it completely necessary or can we delay it and make do with the Status Quo.
So what does it take to help our customers and stakeholders overcome this decision hill? Understanding this one simple fact means understanding the difference between who you are and the star salesperson, leader, professional you can be.The answer is Grit
In my life story, I have been time and again been complimented for my GRIT, for my perseverance, my unconditional belief, my passion, and my true effort to own, yeah. Yes, Grit works and could be the only thing that makes a difference. Be it your life goal or sales targets, or your leadership journey.
“GRIT” is your passion, your perseverance, your belief, your consistent work, and that too for the long term. And the tectonic shift we are going through in our lives, culture and work, it resonates more strongly than ever before “Grit is the most important skill in the new normal”.
So here are my 3 habits/practices which help in be more gritty with a purpose
1. Do not appear occasionally
You do not order (your food/clothes/grocery) from the app if it does not work smoothly ALWAYS. Nor would you rely on a product or professional if you can’t rely on the expected outcome all the time. You like to go to those platforms which keep you engaged when even you are not using them actively.
Humans have an emotional and logical need to rely on and trust.
Similarly, it is important to stay connected with your customer constantly. Keep building a relationship of conversation and sharing/caring. So that when the time comes, it is obvious for them to choose you.
2. Do not go unprepared — You should be very very clear with the destination, with the end goal in your head before you start talking. However, it does not mean that the goal of your first conversation with the customer is to get closure. The goal of your first conversation is to get you the next conversation with him so that he remains invested in your idea and should also feel comfortable in asking more. Thus, you also get ample time to prepare (in the right direction).
3. Do not forget to own it — Put your skin in the game. Put in the best of your best to make it a success and it is equally important to be ready to own the failures.
Once you have your customer’s attention/money/time then own it like your life depends on it, be it sales, customer service, or data for a new internal initiative even communication to drive any agenda.
At Cars24, we build and live a culture of conversation, feedback, and learning. And, it has been keeping all of us more connected and productive in the new normal than ever before.
Do not forget that GRIT is not endless hard work, it is your true commitment and you got to be smart enough to establish a partnership and keep nurturing it 🙂