In the book, CAUSE! A Business Strategy For Standing Out In A Sea of Sameness, by Drs. Jackie and Kevin Friedberg, the authors make the case for what can happen when a business is defined as a cause. Furthermore, for businesses that rally around a heroic cause, they tend to attract a higher level of employee talent. A critical part of any employment engagement has been missing. If you haven’t watched THE most viewed TED Talk of all time, by Simon Sinek, you should invest twenty minutes in doing so. His message is all about the “Why”, and how an effective one will allow you to soar, and separate yourself from your competitors. Companies seem to spend too much time focused on “How” and not the “Why”. Consider this message as your invitation to change the world, and transform why people will want to buy from you–for their reasons, more than yours.
THE DEFINITION of CAUSE
Let’s dust off that ol’ Oxford Dictionary (I know you still use one!), and look up the definition of Cause—A person or thing that gives rise to an action, phenomenon, or condition; a principle-aim or movement that, because of a deep commitment, one is prepared to defend or advocate. When the business becomes a cause, what follows is a movement. Dr. Friedberg states, “When people find something noble and heroic to be part of, their lives and work take on greater meaning and significance“. Another tangible benefit of this theory: your employees will think more like owners and become more committed to the growth of your firm.
C: Conviction Equals Passion–It’s hard for anyone to harbor conviction without applying a degree of passion for the cause. Remember, all decisions are based on emotion, and justified with logic. Said another way: when the heart is sold, the mind will follow–it’s not the other way around! A sale is actually a transference of emotion, from one party to another, and there’s nothing more convincing that a person with deep conviction. Jack’s Snack: The depth of one’s conviction is more important than the length of one’s knowledge.
A: Assume the Desired Outcome(s)–When you’re selling your product, service, company, opinion, or even yourself, a sale is always made. Either you’ll sell the other party on YES, or they’ll sell you on NO. In your mind, and as you visualize, assume you’ve already made the sale, and it’s amazing how many times you’ll win the conversation. With enough conviction, it’ll always be more difficult for anyone to talk you out of your YES.
U: Understand Their End Game–The late, great Stephen R. Covey, taught us to begin with the end in mind–one of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, from the best-selling book, originally published in 1989. Your job in any Sales conversation is to ensure both parties agree on the definition of The Winner’s Circle. There must be room for both of you, in that circle, and all recommendations should support long-term, mutually beneficial, prosperous relationships–and outcomes.
S: Stand Out!–Being outstanding is no longer good enough–if fact, today’s that’s just the ante. If you don’t want to continue swimming in the Sea of Sameness, you must identify your Unique Value Proposition. Once you do, you can create your own Value Equation, that highlights the 5-10 reasons that your Customers do business with you–and not your competitors. Hone the answer to the statement, “We’re the ONLY ones that……………….”. It’s up to you to fill in the blanks.
E: Enjoy the Journey–Ya gotta have fun at work! Find ways to make work more like play, and above all, learn to keep score for fun and profit. Having an enjoyable atmosphere, with a modicum of competition sprinkled in, your people will enjoy participating and coming to work. When you’re selling, if you can get the other party to smile, or better yet, to laugh, you can get them to buy–and see “it” your way.
Companies that are motivated by a core reason, prime passion–or cause, perform better, have more fun, develop strong leaders and attract more followers. Am I describing your company?