Likability, trustworthiness and quality are Guy Kawasaki’s rules of enchantment – or how to win friends and influence people in today’s world. Although Guy presented at the Inside Sales Virtual Summit hosted by InsideSales.com, the message reaches far beyond sales. Or, you could simply say that at some level we are all salespeople. Either way, I’m sure you’ll agree that the following points are helpful as we each move forward in personal interactions, growing a business or growing a career.
Being likable is paramount. How often have you bought something from someone you didn’t like? How long have you worked for someone you didn’t like? How many times have you promoted someone you didn’t like? I agree that life is too short to spend time building neutral relationships, let alone enemies. Make everyone your ally by being likable – it’s not that hard!
· First, smile. Here’s the great part: smile with crow’s feet! The Duchenne smile that engages muscles around both the mouth and the eyes uniquely communicates positive emotion. Embrace those wrinkles. A great smile is also an indication that you are accepting someone for who they are.
· Default to “yes.” Approach the world with the thought of what you can do for others, rather than what they can do for you. While some people may take advantage of this, Guy’s experience has been that the upside of opportunities that will come from this approach far exceeds the downside of being used. Are you thinking of the Jim Carrey movie Yes Man? Always say “yes” if you can.
Cultivate trustworthiness. The simple truth is that you have to trust others before they will trust you. Take for example Zappos and Amazon. Their policies are created in a way that shows they trust their customers. Zappos will ship shoes to you at no cost, and also pay the shipping on the way back if you don’t want them. Amazon will take returns on eBooks within a window of time that is conceivably long enough to read the book. Both policies can be taken advantage of, but because the companies trust their customers, they have a growing number of repeat customers. How do build trust?
· Be a baker, not a taker. Guy’s actual words were a “baker, not an eater,” but isn’t there something more poetic about the way I said it? A “taker” eats as much as possible, as fast as possible, because they see a limited amount. But the “baker” has a different mentality. The baker knows that another pie, or another 10 pies can be baked and therefore sees abundance. Have a baker mentality and it will be easier to trust others.
· Agree on something, anything. Finding something in common is the easiest way to begin building that relationship of trust. Just like the two diplomats who could agree on nothing more than the fact that they both hated their wives’ insistence on going to the opera, the affinity you find may have nothing to do with what brings you together.
The final ingredient to enchanting others: Perfect your quality. While relationships are important, it’s still true that “it’s easier to enchant people with good stuff than with crap,” says Guy. He recommends doing something DICEE—deep so that there are features and functionality even for the power user; intelligent or a product that is designed with how you need to use it in mind; complete meaning that the totality of the product is there including how to use it and how to support it; and empowering and elegant finish up the list.
These pillars of enchantment are great reminders of what we all know, and here are a few more tips from Guy on how to apply them:
1. When your boss asks you to do something, drop everything and do it. A great way to default to “yes” and be likable. And smile while you do it!
2. Instead of “thank you” the optimal response is “I know you would do the same for me.” This invites reciprocation and builds relationships where you trust each other.
3. Use social proof to reinforce your product. For example, Guy believes that Apple’s white earbuds were the genius of the iPod—everyone could see who had one. A great example of how a DICEE (complete and elegant in this case) product has the power of enchantment.
4. Create a story. It’s more compelling than a bunch of whiz-bang awesome adjectives that describe your product. The story combines the quality of the product with the human element of relationships.
Guy himself is an enchanting speaker and you can hear his presentation for yourself in the on-demand archive of the Inside Sales Virtual Summit. What do you find enchanting? Do you agree with his tips on how to enchant others?