Shut up and listen

That title is harsh. I know. And I thought about toning it down and gently suggesting people attempt to give over more of the conversation, but I couldn't tone it down. Because the truth is, I am actually getting pretty darn annoyed.

I am annoyed with the man who gave me is 50-floor "elevator pitch" without stopping for a breath.

I am annoyed at the financial advisor who felt the need to list out every possible service her company provides.

I am annoyed at the salesman who snickered at my one-sentence explanation of my work, presumably mocking my lack of sales know-how for not taking up more of everyone's time.

I am annoyed at the entrepreneur shoving her business card in my face without any context whatsoever.

I wish these people would just shut up. Not permanently. It's not that I never want to hear what they have to say. But what I want is more than a sales pitch. And I am not alone.

Listening, really listening, is one of the greatest tools any business person has in their tool kit. In listening, we are able to understand the needs and desires of the people we are attempting to form relationships with. And when we understand, we are able to speak to these needs. It's basic sales, isn't it? It's also basic relationship building. Please don't skip the basics.

#business #sales #listenfirst