Customers Don’t Always Know What They Want

And if they don’t know what they want, then how can they be right?

This is a dangerous assumption to make that your customers “know” what they want.

When you start to look for a new car, do you know everything and anything about the new features available to you in the current models?

And if you don’t know everything, how can you be “automatically” right in what you are asking for?

And conversely, because the customer isn’t sure of what they want because they don’t know what that “it” is, this is not an excuse for you to run over them with features and expenses they don’t need.

The best customer engagements occur when you listen to what the customer wants and then you propose to them what they really need.

That’s where the magic happens.

Always have the last laugh

Not the last “I told you so” laugh.

Not the last “This is so dumb it’s silly” laugh.

Not the last “I got my revenge on you” laugh.

No, I’m talking about the last laugh that happens when you and a bunch of your co-workers are sitting around trying to figure out why X is broken you realize it is a semi-colon in your code.

I’m talking about the laugh that happens when someone tries something new and it blows up in their face.

I’m talking about the jokes you make in your weekly meeting with the team to discuss what the priority is when all you have are priority ones and the team is clearly stressed out about it.

I’m talking about the humour you can use in a sales presentation to get your point across and make it fun for you and your customer.

That’s the last laugh we need more of.

(side note: if you’re looking for more information on sales and humour, check out Jon Selig and what he’s doing with “Comedy for Salespeople”, it’s a great approach to working with customers through sales)


Dipping your Toe in the Water

Never works.

How many times have you done this, dipped your toe in frigid waters (because they are always frigid) and then walked away?

“Nope, not today”

How many times have you done this with a project or new product launch?

“We’ll put it out there, but we are only going to put in 15% of our combined efforts to make it a success.  If it hits, we’ll invest more.”

So it’s now on the customer to make your product a success, to adopt it, to share it, to spread the word, to start the movement to make it better, to lead the charge.

If you can get these customers, if you have these customers, hold them close and don’t ever let them go because they believe in your more than you believe in yourself.

If you don’t have these customers, stopping dipping your toe in the water to see if a whale will bite, jump in and make it happen.

Your customers are waiting for you to believe in yourself as much as they believe in you.

What do you mean you didn’t win?

I guess that’s in then?

Time to pack it in.

Time to go home.

Time to queue up 18+ seasons of some show you never heard of on Netflix.

Time to go back to what you were doing before and get yourself comfortable.

Time to realize that’s it, that’s all.

I didn’t think you were going to do that, but maybe now you’ll realize it’s okay you didn’t get the promotion, it’s okay your demo blew up, it’s okay things didn’t go as planned and it sure is okay you didn’t make it on your first try.

If it was easy everyone would be doing it, but they’re not, so take a night, maybe 2 – relax, regroup, refocus, put down that remote – and get back to it.