Influence is intertwined with elements of your everyday life: commercials on the radio, the menu board at Starbucks, a Reel on Instagram, or a post on LinkedIn.
And what do these elements all have in common?
That home renovation commercial on the radio is selling you the feeling of what it would be like to have sleek, new hardwood floors. The menu board at Starbucks is highlighting the coziness of their new Pumpkin Spice Latte, helping you get into the fall season. A post on social media is selling you the ease and convenience of a robot vacuum, or a thought leader is inspiring you to adopt their methodology.
Influence means having the capability to affect someone’s thoughts and actions. And when you marry this with your sales efforts?
You’ll be able to amplify your influence. You’ll be a confident and comfortable communicator who makes waves in your business, inspiring stakeholders and clients, and ultimately generating revenue and innovation.
But how do you go about amplifying your influence the right way with the Transformational Selling ™ mindset? You can do so by overcoming these top five influence challenges.
For more support with amplifying your influence, download the free, fillable Amplify Your Influence Guidebook. Get access to a tool that will help you observe where your current influence skills are while giving you tips and a strategy to grow.
Roadblock 1: Motivators
One of the first influence challenges to overcome is motivators. Selling, marketing, and influencing can be some of the most challenging skills to master because they all revolve around human psychology. This means while a proposal or social media post may spike interest in one person, it may not for others.
Everyone has different motivators. What motivates you and drives you will differ from what drives me.
A motivator is something that gives someone a reason to act. For example, if you’re at a grocery store and see freshly baked brownies for 25% off, you’re going to snag them because chocolate is the best taste in the world. However, someone else may see the sale and not bat an eye because (dare I say it) there are people in this world who just don’t like chocolate.
How to swerve: Find what motivates your stakeholders and clients. One of the core Transformational Selling™ pillars is empathetic communication, and practicing this pillar can help you swerve around this roadblock. When you’re chatting with your client or stakeholder, ask them questions to get to know them deeper than a business level. Get to the bottom of what inspires and matters most to them. At the same time, actively listen. Use their answers to ask more strategic questions so you can be more accurate and influential with your proposals, offers, and messages.
Roadblock 2: Communication Styles
Here comes darn human psychology, yet again getting in the way of you being a transformational influencer. Many influence challenges surround understanding an overhead level of human psychology (how people react and communicate).
Much like everyone has different motivators, people have different communication styles too. A surgeon wouldn’t speak to a patient with the same verbiage as they would with another surgeon, so why would you talk to your client or stakeholder like you would with a fellow colleague?
It wasn’t until I dove into personality testing that I had an, “Aha,” moment. I’m a Certified Fascinate Assessment® Advisor, and I’ve incorporated this assessment into my corporate workshops because it’s an eye-opener. Understanding that everyone communicates differently is one level, but understanding how and why everyone communicates differently is a whole other level. You can take your own assessment here.
How to swerve: If there is one piece of advice that I leave with you to help you communicate with stronger influence, it’s ensuring your client and stakeholder feel like they’re in the driver’s seat, that they have control over their own actions. No one likes to feel coerced or forced to do something, so communicate in a way that doesn’t threaten their autonomy. Always make them the hero and leave the ball and power in their court.
Roadblock 3: Resistance and Status Quo Bias
Resistance is common for influence challenges and is a natural human reaction to influence because you’re inspiring someone to change, whether it be opening a new bank account, investing in a new training course, or trying a new product. And change can feel uncomfortable for people; we thrive from routine and consistency. Status quo bias, the preference of things remaining the same, feeds into this.
Not only will you deal with the resistance to change from others, but you may battle your own internal dialogue of resistance too when influencing someone: “Oh god, how am I going to do this?” “Am I saying the right things?” “Will they see my point of view?” “Will I make this sale?”
These thoughts of fear and worry are roadblocks preventing you from finding ways forward, fine-tuning your message, resonating with your audience, and growing your revenue.
How to swerve: Remember the empathetic communication I mentioned earlier? Bring it back. When you ask strategic questions and use active listening you can discover what makes them resistant to your message. From there, you can shift the conversation to understand their concern and offer them a solution. To swerve around your own roadblock, you need to shift your mindset from a place of fear to love. Believe in the value of the message and offer you’re extending to people and see yourself as a bridge connecting them to their ideal solution or life. Change your internal dialogue to: “I know exactly how I’m going to do this,” “I’ve prepared the right content to resonate with my stakeholder,” “I hope they will understand and resonate with my message, but even if they don’t, I will find another option to help them see the way forward,” and “I’m confident I’ll close this sale and help this person, but even if it doesn’t pan out, I’ll remain consistent and look for other open doors of opportunity.”
Roadblock 4: Reactance
Reactance is a type of reaction that comes from something that limits someone’s behaviours, like their freedom to choose. So, what does this look like in everyday life? It’s like when a parent tells their child they can’t have a cookie until after dinner, and they head toward the cookie jar anyway. The child reacts this way because the parents are “threatening” their freedom of choice.
So, if you’re in a business meeting or a discovery meeting with a client, and you tell them to do something, that actually encourages them to do the opposite, because you’re impeding their freedom.
How to swerve: If you’ve been reading this blog closely, you’ll know that influence isn’t about telling people to do things. So, the simple way to swerve around reactance is bolstering your influence skills and adjusting your messaging so that you never compromise the freedom of choice for a stakeholder or client.
Influence is about helping someone confidently take action that benefits them, and helps them be, do, and have more of what they want.
How Will You Amplify Your Influence?
In a perfect sales world, there wouldn’t be anything preventing your message from resonating with stakeholders or clients. Alas, it’s not a perfect world, and I think that’s the beauty of it. It helps you grow by challenging you to come up with more transformational selling strategies and messages.
So, how will you grow and swerve around influence challenges? How will you amplify your influence?
- Will you identify key motivators?
- Will you personalize your communication style?
- Will you understand your client’s key concerns and help them see their possible transformation?
- Will you enhance the stakeholder’s freedom of choice?
Have you checked out my new book yet?
Transformational Selling: 8 Habits to deepen client relationships + grow your business with your integrity intact!
This book offers you eight habits that will help you:
- Unlock the power of Your Brilliant Difference
• Stop letting fear get in the way of your business development activities
• Feel authentic and aligned to your values every time you sell
• Create invitations and ask for the business with confidence and integrity
• Establish a people + purpose = profit mindset
• Build a financially sustainable business you and your clients will love
You can get your copy here.
If you’re ordering more than one copy, be sure to take advantage of these special book bonuses. Learn more about them here.
I can’t wait to hear from you and the stories you’ll share because you’ve chosen to become a Transformational Seller!