Last month, we began to talk a bit about the sociological process involved in very quickly establishing rapport with a new client–or completely blowing it–in the first four minutes. Here are four easy steps to help hurdle those barriers.
1. Convey self-esteem
Have you met people who seem very apologetic during a first meeting or those who play the role of a martyr, drawing your sympathy? Relationships are not built on sympathy, they are built on self-confidence. I recently listened to recorded cold call and referral sales approaches which missed this communication element. I heard: “Sorry to interrupt you today” and “Are you busy right now?” Many of these phrases are made even worse by a non-assertive voice. But if you instead speak with confidence, assuming that a prospect is interested in you and what you have to say, you can get past the four-minute barrier.
2. Communicate creatively
Creativity in building a relationship can mean using humor appropriately. I once was called by a telephone salesperson who was trying to sell commodities futures. I said, “I don’t like to invest money without seeing the broker face to face.” He then replied, “I can’t see you face to face, I’m too homely.” I laughed. He bought more time.