Like it or not, everything in this world comes down to either persuading or being persuaded. I despise the word due to the magnitude of negative connotations that accompany it. To the average person, persuasion means someone’s trying to screw you over. For years, I thought the same thing. Then I had the realization that, while there are crooks and down right bad people in this world, not all people can be bad. But how is that possible if everyone is working to persuade you for one reason or another? In its simplest form, it breaks down to passion. If you learned something today that was an absolute eye-opener, something that could change your life for the better, would you share it with your friends? I hope all of you answered yes to that! If not, please stop reading because you are not the audience I am interested in attracting. Now for those of you still with me, what would be your reasoning for sharing it? BECAUSE YOU ARE PASSIONATE ABOUT YOUR FRIENDS AND WOULD DO ANYTHING TO HELP THEM GET A STEP AHEAD.
I’ve always been interested in motivation. Whether it was on the football field, on the golf course, (I’m going to leave basketball out of this because who would look up to the worst basketball player in the world ;)) or in life, I love pushing people towards continuous improvement. So when choosing a major, why in the world would I select “marketing with an emphasis in professional selling?” The little voice in my head chimed in “management is right next to it you dumbass, just pick management!” I didn’t listen… But there’s a reason that I didn’t listen. From a fairly young age, I enjoyed being the leader. I liked being the one to drive the ship. If it sunk, it was on me. I had a pretty critical father and was used to being under a magnifying glass, so I felt like I was prepared for the responsibility. The most important trait of a good leader is having the ability to get your team to “buy in” to your company’s goals. How do you do that? Persuasion. Not the Jordan Belfort, Wolf of Wall Street persuasion, but the “I believe in what we’re doing here, you should too, and here’s why” persuasion. How do you master that? Practice… and what major will allow you to study and practice persuasion more than any other? BINGO.
I’m not a manipulator and never will be. I don’t believe in manipulation. If you want what I’m offering, great, but if you don’t, that’s fine too! All I care about is building relationships with as many people as I possibly can because to me, relationships MATTER! When you’re sick in a hospital bed, you’re not thinking about that extra $1,000 you made by selling Joe Shmoe something he didn’t need. You’re looking at the door wondering if Joe Shmoe is going to come in and visit you. For this reason, I have lost out on a lot of sales jobs, and have also been let go from sales jobs. I was raised with a core set of values and nowhere in that book does it say “the money is better off in you pocket than it is in theirs.” If I become rich it will be because I was able to build relationships with honest people who found value in what I was offering and they were willing to pay for it. Not because I was selling ice to Eskimos. It all starts with truly believing in what you’re doing and/or selling. Your customers aren’t as dumb as you might think.