Careers, Personal Branding, Sales and Marketing, career advice, career management

It’s Not About You

Mary Rosenbaum | October 23rd, 2013

Have you had moments like this: You meet someone at a conference, a meeting, or a party and all they do is talk about themselves. During what seems like a overly long monologue you learn more than you want about that person. And after the encounter you realize they never really asked you any questions nor listened much to what you had to say when they momentarily (accidentally) shared a little airtime.

This topic comes to mind because it happened to me last week. I was blown away by the lack of awareness that this man had about the impression he was making on me. And, it wasn’t good. He became memorable but in a way that would never prompt me to use his services or recommend him or even call him.

As my eyes glazed over and my mind wandered, these are comments I wanted to share with him; so instead, I’m sharing them with you.

Conversation is a two-way street.

The purpose of any encounter is to engage someone in conversation (2-way conversation) so that a connection is made. Meeting someone new is just like a first date. You want them to know a little about you but all the while you’re trying to find out about them so you can make those special connections. Connections result in trust building and we all know that trust is the basis for any lasting relationship – business or personal. So share, a little, and get them to share as well – the conversation will flow from there.

A little information goes a long way.

Getting back to that first date, you want to learn a little bit about how the other person thinks and what type of approach would work best with them. You also want to find out what they need or might have an interest in. If all you do is talk about how good you are you never really know if you’re hitting the right points as far as their needs and wants go. So ask them questions, get them talking, and I guarantee you’ll be better prepared for that pitch or marketing call later on.

Hit a home run

Do you know when you’re striking out or hitting a home run? Try to be more aware of how you are coming across to the other person. Appreciative nods, good responses and questions volleyed back and forth are obvious signs that you’re doing well.

If their eyes seem to stray away from you as you talk or they become unresponsive except for a few nods or uh huh’s, then change gears and get them talking about something that interests them.

If your conversation doesn’t improve, give them and you the space and ability to move on. After all, you can’t fall in love every time.

Please share other tips that work for you and any other comments you might have.

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