TEDx Salford, The Salesman’s Story

See the video of my presentation at TEDx Salford, Manchester.  Everybody has great ideas, everybody has ambitions to get that good job.  People tend to dislike the idea of selling anything but with the skill to sell we can achieve the things that we so desperately want.

Little Treasure

core skill

Despite your skill or diligence or ability to do the job, an enterprise must take into account the surrounding things that do not apparently relate specifically to the core skill.  Rich people are usually rich because they’re often very shrewd and I find they indulge in a secret practice of developing “little treasures.”  Being rich and clever, unlike the majority of the public, they do value core skills and realise that their prey, who are incompetent at professionalism but are brilliant at the core skill, can be had on the cheap and will become “little treasures.”

“I have a man who does my gardening, he’s a bit smelly but he’s a little treasure.  I can’t remember the last time we paid him!”

“She is a bit odd, but she does all my dressmaking by hand, we pay her pennies.  She is a little treasure.”

Do you want to be a “little treasure”?  No?  Then shape up!

Let the sun shine in

In every book I’ve ever written, I am sure I mention Aesop’s fable of the sun and the wind.  This piece will be no exception because it is at the heart of what I believe to be the best route to persuasion.  If you don’t know it, the story goes that the sun and the wind were bowling around the heavens having an argument as to who was the most powerful.  They saw an unsuspecting human far below wearing a thick coat.

“I bet I can get that coat off him” the wind declared.

“You’re on!” said the sun, “A tenner says you can’t.”

The wind gathered up all its force and howled down from the sky and it hit the man at full power.  He ended up tumbling down the road like an Autumn leaf but with every blast he pulled the coat tighter and tighter around him.  In the end the wind gave up exhausted.

“OK” he admitted to the sun, “You win, the guy will never let that coat go.”

“I can get it off him” grinned the sun.  “Want to get your money back double or quits?”

“You’re on.”

The sun rose majestically into the sky where he smiled and shone and blazed.  The flowers opened, the puddles dried, the birds began to sing.  The man mopped his sweating brow, smiled and of course took off his coat (whilst singing, I’m sure, zipidee doo dah).

Will your customers be singing zipidee doo dah once you have finished with them?