To Sell is Human

  1. Research In Motion is a legend one day and a laggard the next.
    Successful negotiators recommend that you should mimic the mannerisms of your negotiation partner to get a better deal. For example, when the other person rubs his/her  face, you should, too. If he/she leans back or leans forward in the chair, you should, too. However, they say it is very important that you mimic subtly enough that the other person does not notice what you are doing. Otherwise this technique completely backfires.
  2. Other research demonstrates mimicry's effectiveness. For example, a Dutch study found that waitresses who repeated diners' orders word for word earned 70% more tips than those who paraphrased orders - and that customers with servers who mimicked were more satisfied with their dining experience.
    As much as perspective-taking and empathy are fraternal twins, mimicry has a first cousin: touching.
  3. Strategic mimicry's 3 key steps: Watch, Wait and Wane

    1) Watch: observe what the other person is doing. How is he sitting? Are his legs crossed? His arms? Does he lean back? Tilt to one side? Tap his toe? 

    2) Wait: Once you've observed, don't spring immediately into action. Let the situation breathe. If he leans back, count to fifteen, then consider leaning back, too. If he makes an important point, repeat back the main idea verbatim - but a bit later in the conversation. Don't do this too may times, though. It's not a contest in which you're piling up points per mimic.
    3) Wane: After you've mimicked a little, try to be less conscious of what you're doing. This is something that human do naturally, so at some point, it will begin to feel effortless.
  4. Imagine that you're readying yourself for an important meeting in which you must pitch an idea and marshal support for it. You could tell yourself, "I'm the best. This is going to be a breeze," and that might give you a short-term emotional boost. But if you instead ask, "Can I make a great pitch?" the research has found that you provide yourself something that reaches deeper and lasts longer. You might respond to yourself, "Well, yes, I can make a great pitch. In fact, I've probably pitched ideas at meeting two dozen times in my life." You might remind yourself of your preparation. "Sure, I can do this. I know this material inside out and I've got some great examples to persuade the people who might be skeptical." You might also give yourself specific tactical advice. "At the last meeting like this, I spoke too quickly - so this time I'll slow down. Sometimes in these situations, I get flustered by questions, so this time I'll take a breath before responding." Mere affirmation feels good and that helps. But it doesn't prompt you to summon the resources and strategies to actually accomplish the task.
    Levity is that unseen force that lifts you skyward, whereas gravity is the opposing force that pulls you earthward. Unchecked levity leaves you flighty, ungrounded, and unreal. Unchecked gravity leaves you collapsed in a heap of misery. Yet when properly combined, these two opposing forces leave you buoyant.
  5. As a result, your email subject line should be either obviously useful (Found the best & cheapest photocopier) or mysteriously intriguing (A photocopy breakthrough), but probably not both (The Cannon IR2545 is a photocopy breakthrough).
    Along with utility and curiosity is a third principle: specificity. Indeed, Brian Clark recommends that subject lines should be "ultra-specific." Thus a mushy subject line Improve your golf swing achieves less than one offering 4 tips to improve your golf swing this afternoon.
Card Set
To Sell is Human
Daniel Pink