Johnny, a young account manager wearing a yellow long-sleeve shirt, slightly faded black trousers, dusty slip-on black leather shoes with white ankle-length sports socks showing, and a tie, walks slowly into a client lobby. He first takes a look around before approaching the receptionist. He queues behind a group of people ahead of him.

Come his turn, the receptionist cursorily inquires as to what his business was. Johnny tells the receptionist, “Ma’am I am 10 minutes early for a 3 o’clock appointment with Ms. Salazar, the VP for New Business Ventures.” Without even checking for time, the receptionist asks Johnny to sign in on the visitors’ log, to sit down, and to wait. The receptionist then curtly proceeds toattend to the person behind Johnny. Johnny occupies a vacant couch and waits.

The lobby clock strikes 3:00 p.m. Johnny unsuccessfully tries to make eye contact with the receptionist, who happens to be currently engaged with another visitor. Johnny sheepishly rises and goes to the reception counter to inquire about his appointment with Ms. Salazar. The receptionist, without batting an eyelash, replies firmly, “Please wait, sir”. Hesitantly, Johnny returns to his seat. He continues waiting.

To pass the time, he reads coffee table magazines. He grows impatient. Now it is already a quarter to four. Once again, he rises and heads for the receptionist. He waits behind a visitor talking to the receptionist. Upon his turn, he asks the receptionist if Ms. Salazar is now available. The receptionist impatiently replies, “Yes, Ms. Salazar knows someone has come to see her. But you see, she is a very busy person and is still in a meeting. So sir, please take your seat.”

   Around 3:55 pm, Roy, another salesperson in his early 30s, donning a formal jacket with matching well-ironed trousers, a pristine, elegantly textured white shirt, andwell-shined wing-tipped leather shoes, walks into the same lobby. Without any hesitation, hebeelines for the reception counter.

As he makes eye contact with the receptionist, he softly albeit authoritatively says, “I am expected by Ms. Salazar. Please let Sandy (Ms. Salazar) know I have arrived. My name is Mr. Roy Felipe”. The receptionist responds, “Sir, please sit down and wait”. Roy looks at the receptionist with deep, serious eyes, remaining unperturbed and replies calmly yet firmly, “No, it is alright. I can stay right here while you call Sandy to let her know Mr. Roy Felipe is here.”

Roy remains planted in front of the reception desk, a neat man of timely precision, assertive, exuding authority yet not transgressing the line of arrogance.  The receptionist makes the call to Ms. Salazar’s office and thereafter returns the handset to its cradle, while urgently reporting back to Roy, “Ms. Salazar is personally on her way down here to meet you.” Roy responds, “Thank you Julie…is that your name…if I can read your nameplate correctly from where I stand?” The receptionist smiles, “Yes sir, my name is Julie.” Roy responds, “Well, it is a pleasure to meet you Julie”, and he breaks into a brief pleasant smile. Julie smiles back and thinks, “Hmm…this Roy fellow initially seemed very assertive, authoritative even, but has a lighter side to him.” She casually tries to get a glimpse of his right hand and saw the wedding ring and thinks, “Well, so much for that!”

Shortly then, Ms. Sandy Salazar arrives to warmly welcome Roy. Roy and Sandy warmly shake hands and exchange pleasantries, as if they have known each other for quite a while. Then Ms. Salazar ushered Roy to where the elevator is, to go up to her office floor.

   Unbeknownst to Johnny, his appointment just got bumped further by Roy’s insertion that compounded the impact of Ms. Salazar’s extended meeting.  Furthermore, Johnny was unaware that Ms. Salazar had to excuse herself from the extended meeting upon learning that Roy has arrived, prompting a conclusion to the extended meeting. Unfortunately, Johnny was not accorded the same consideration.

Julie looks at the direction of Johnny and said, “Oh, by the way, that was Ms. Salazar, you will be next after that fellow. Thank you for patiently waiting.” Johnny, smilesback and replies, “Thank you Ma’am, with much relief that his meeting will finally push through.” That would be at 5:00pm.
 
WHY IS INFLUENCING CRITICAL?

How many of your sales people are like Johnny in this reality-drawn story?  How much time is wasted just waiting for clients? How many opportunities are lost every day when they can’t get people to go along with what they want? Moreover, how much of their deals are donated to competition because of the lack of influencing strategies and skills? Lastly, how much profits lay wasted?

How would you like your salespeople to be like Roy instead? The good news is that Roy’s strategies and skills are not in-born! The “Roys” of this world learn Influencing Strategies and Skills from training. They work well with any personality and context of situation. Guided by framework and tools, they are capable of coming up with influencing strategy of any person and context in 5 minutes or less They complement their selling and negotiating skills with influencing skills, making them capable of suavely securing business better than most.
 
WHAT IS INFLUENCING?

Influencing is not equal to charm. Neither is it just about connections. Likewise, it is not mere leveraging of power and pressure over others.

So what is it? Well, the art of influencing is mysterious, elusive and seems to be a monopoly of only a few!

However, the SCIENCE OF INFLUENCING combines strategies and skills that enable the user to make people voluntarily go along with verbal and non-verbal (tones and body language) suggestions and cues more readily than straightforward methods. It involves systematic variations of 3D communication depending on personality and context, while anchored onto critical drivers, following the algorithm of the influencing subject, and using the most appropriate options among identified strategies.

Well, all these can be learned!
 
 
Rowen Untivero is Partner and Chief Sales Strategist of Mansmith and Fielders. He developed the world’s first mathematics of negotiation, strategic nego-mapping methodology, 3D Language Wheel (verbals tones and body language), selling mechanics as well as systematic account development strategies and many more. He will be conducting the Influencing Skills Using 3D Language on July 12-13, 2018. Email info@mansmith.netfor more details.