Connecting the dots
As somebody who speaks and consults, I've had the opportunity to train B2B sales teams such as Oracle NetSuite, Forbes and Crunchbase on the art of storytelling.
It's given me a rare insight into how salespeople communicate with their prospects in the wild.
Why should you care?
Well, I've noticed a recurring pattern among those who are unable to communicate with confidence.
Subtly, they signal certain behaviours, beliefs and cues which tell me a story about their struggles.
Now, you may not have the "title" of a salesperson...
But you best believe you're selling something.
Whether it's yourself, your ideas or your solution, your ability to communicate with confidence is the difference between success and failure.
In today's newsletter, we're going to uncover 3 common patterns which hold salespeople back from communicating with confidence.
In turn, these insights will give you the self-awareness you need to become a conscious communicator yourself.
Let's get it!
3 Ways To Kill Confident Communication
#1 - Hide behind niceties, corporate jargon and wear a "mask"
I know how scary it is to show up in the world as who you truly are.
However, the alternative sucks!
When I say alternative, I mean living a life of misalignment due to consistent internal conflict.
What's the first common pattern of salespeople who struggle to communicate with confidence?
They secretly fear showing up as themselves, as they worry they'll alienate a prospect or client, and lose a deal.
This results in them wearing a "mask" as they present a diluted version of their true character.
Using a "phone voice" when speaking
Struggling to make consistent eye contact
Engaging in "pacifying behaviours", such as touching their face to soothe their discomfort
Using corporate spiel versus conversational language
The list goes on...
Whether you're a professional, entrepreneur or salesperson, can you relate to any of the above?
Action step - engage in ONE behaviour in your next business interaction which helps you begin the process of removing your mask. It's a lifelong journey, but your future self will thank you for it.
#2 - Ask generic questions that sound robotic and scripted
As a mentor once taught me, the quality of your questions will dictate the quality of your results (in business and life).
Learning how to be present with somebody and ask thoughtful questions is an overlooked skill.
What's the second common pattern of salespeople who struggle to communicate with confidence?
They ask generic questions which make them look and sound like they're engaging in a "box-ticking exercise". This breaks trust, stalls connection and makes them forgettable.
Remember - when you're truly present with somebody, you are giving them the gift of your attention.
In turn, this allows you to ask questions based on the following filter:
"How will this question help this person uncover their problem, understand the magnitude of it and get them closer to solving it (with or without my support)?"
When we adopt this mindset, our questions become potent, specific and focused on the human being in front of us.
Action step - engage in "box breathing" before your next business interaction to declutter your mind and stay focused on being present.
#3 - Break promises to yourself
Said you were going to have an ice bath in the morning and didn't?
You just broke a promise to yourself.
Said you were going to get a workout in before work and didn't?
You just broke a promise to yourself.
Here's what we often miss...
If we can't keep a promise to ourselves, how are we going to fulfil one to others?
What's the third common pattern of salespeople who struggle to communicate with confidence?
They repeatedly break promises to themselves which prevents them from showing up with unshakeable confidence.
When we lose faith in ourselves, our internal narrative begins to shift.
In turn, this shows up in the way we hold ourselves, alongside the clarity and conviction of our message.
Action step - make ONE scary promise to yourself tomorrow, keep it and watch your posture and frame change for the better.
All in all...
These 3 insights aren't just applicable to salespeople, they apply to human beings at scale.
All of these patterns point to one thing: doing the inner work.
No amount of communication tips, tricks and hacks can save you if you aren't truly comfortable in your own skin.
I hope you enjoyed this one...
I'll see ya next week homie!
P.S. Whenever you're ready, here is 1 way I can support you:
1. [B2B SALES TEAMS & ORGANIZATIONS ONLY] Book me for a storytelling keynote or workshop: Whether it's in person or virtual, to an intimate audience or a room full of thousands, learn more about how your audience can become influential storytellers at your next sales kickoff, offsite or conference.