Changing what people do is more likely to be shallow and short lived. It may work if someone truly commits to building a new habit and sees their efforts rewarded. But when you only teach someone what to do, they will not be well equipped to adapt.
To succeed in both structured and unstructured situations, you need to change how they think.
Let’s look at an example…
Imagine for a minute you’re trying to get someone who doesn’t like sales, to enjoy sales.
In this example, you are the community manager of a co-working or temporary office space. You are responsible for training your new junior associate how to give the tours and sell the space to prospective tenants. Your associate is young and relatively inexperienced in sales. This associate, like many people, doesn’t really like sales.
So, you start at the beginning: raw information.
- What are the different sized office spaces?
- Can members get their mail delivered here?
- What sorts of companies work in this space?
- Where is the coffee?
But all of these are questions that could be answered on a single sheet of paper, or listed on a website. It’s important that your associate knows the answers to all of these questions, but as we’ll cover in a moment, if you cultivate the right mindset, you won’t have to work very hard for someone to remember the answers to all of these questions.
The bigger question is: how do you transform this person into a sales rockstar?
- You cannot simply hand them a script.
- You cannot simply tell them the steps of the process.
- You cannot simply provide the most effective sales tools or commonly requested resources.
Sure, doing all of those things can be helpful, but it doesn’t make someone a better salesperson. It doesn’t change their relationship to the act of selling. It might make things “a little easier,” it might make the process “a little less uncomfortable.”
But YOU LOVE SALES. So, you stop for a minute and think about the way the YOU sell.
When YOU meet someone, you get excited to meet someone who could potentially become a new part of YOUR community. You feel ownership. This is YOUR community. YOU feel pride.
Write that down.
Now, go deeper.
You think about how this person represents a new ingredient in a complex cocktail of differing companies and personalities, all occupying the same space. You know that you’re going to see these people everyday, so you want them to be awesome because you are fiercely protective of YOUR community.
You want them to feel really comfortable with you so that if they need something, they come right up and tell you because you know that this allows you to make a better experience for that tenant, and potentially the rest of the community. You play all of this out, envisioning a space where everyone loves coming into work, they enjoy their community, and their community managers.
You realize that this vision is what drives every possible sales opportunity for you: excitement, ownership, and pride.
However, you can’t just give that excitement and pride to your associate as you would a Hallmark card.
If you want to pass it on, you have to look at the seed from which it grew.
In this example, that seed, is ownership.
YOU are excited to meet new potential tenants because you feel ownership in your community. YOU take pride, because this community is YOURS.
You need to plant that same seed.
Create the right environment, and work to ensure that your associate, and really everyone on your team feels ownership. Because you’re not training people to follow a series of steps, you’re training them to think like an owner.
Once they do that, they’re no longer selling. They are building and protecting something that is theirs.
Don’t lead by training people what to do.
Lead by training people how to see things.