Over the past year, I read a couple of books by Brene Brown and Amanda Palmer – “Daring Greatly” and “The Art of Asking,” respectively. The both have excellent TED talks if you want the 20-minute primer…
Brene Brown, “The power of vulnerability.”
Amanda Palmer, “The art of asking.”
One of the most challenging aspects of my own behavior is my unwillingness to be vulnerable and to ask for help from the people around me and from customers. I’ve taken a few steps and actions to overcome this fear of asking and fear of being vulnerable, and in every case, I can say that the outcomes have been positive.
A couple of examples….
Back in late 2014 over Christmas break, I began contacting LinkedIn contacts I hadn’t talked with in some time to say hello and see how I could help.
The biggest benefit was hopping on a call with a friend running a coaching business who introduced me to several people and resources that directly led to my ability to depart from “day job” land and make SalesQualia a full-time effort once and for all.
More recently, a few student teams in my Sales Management class at Hult International Business School this week were struggling with their assignments to make contact with a professional salesperson and product manager to learn how they sell their products.
Right there in class, I hopped on LinkedIn and found contacts on LinkedIn that were 2nd level connections (people with whom I had a common connection) and I wrote InMails to those people asking for help on behalf of the students.
The result? Students now have meetings and calls set up with professionals at Boeing, Pardot and Oculus. It took a leap of faith to write out and send those InMails in front of the entire class, knowing full well that I could have heard crickets. Instead, nearly everyone I wrote to got back in touch and said they’d help if they could.
None of us can know all of the answers and nearly everyone I’ve ever met has been willing to help if you ask.
So that’s my challenge to you.
Are there places in your sales process and customer communication where you can be more vulnerable?
Where can you ask for help?