Wednesday, February 8, 2012
NLP Influencing Strategies for Sales and Business Management
By Rintu Basu
NLP and Hypnosis have a lot of tools around covert language and persuasion skills. Real persuasion only happens when you stand back from the situation and take the strategic view. Hypnotic language tools are really useful, but only when they are used from a strategic perspective. For example, a manager from the NLP Scotland's Business Group recently emailed me with a typical problem.
Her team is constantly hounding her for answers to problems they can find for themselves and she is losing a lot of time constantly helping them out. The answer to this is all about training her team to do things differently. What is happening is that by giving them answers it is encouraging the team to see going to their manager as the easy route.
If the manager were to create work for her team every time they are looking to her for a quick answer they will soon stop unnecessary questions. If every time a member of the team asked a question they were shown how to find the answer themselves and then had to report back on that answer at the next team meeting they would be getting more work. Over a period of time the team would start sorting out their own questions because they will start to realize that asking their manager would mean more work than if they just found the answer for themselves. This is a fairly typical management issue and the solution is arrived at by standing back from the situation and understanding the net gain for the team in doing what they are doing.
One useful NLP Technique is just considering the positive intention behind any behaviour. In the above case the team were probably doing this because it was giving them attention from their manager and also solving the problem in the easiest way from their perspective. By taking away these benefits it suddenly makes figuring out the problem for themselves much more attractive.
By taking away the positive benefits of certain behaviours and making sure that they get benefits from the behaviour you want them to display you can make great changes in organizations easily. An example might be some of the sales teams I have worked with. A standard measurement in sales teams is obviously sales. Sales people being competitive and usually rewarded for results means that they are generally keen to get the sale, sometimes at the expense of the customer. This can lead to problems about customer satisfaction, retention and buyer's remorse.
One sales team I have worked with recently took this idea of a strategic NLP technique. The problem they had was customers canceling the policy within the thirty day cooling off period. The issue being that their sales staff were pressuring customers into buying policies that they didn't really want. By moving the measurement of a sale to the end of the thirty day cooling off period almost instantly created the result they were looking for. Initial sales fell, but the retention after thirty days rose quite dramatically. The sales staff were more focused on creating quality sales and making sure that the customer was happy with the policy they were buying.
The key to this approach is to understand that there is a positive intention behind every behaviour and that is what keeps the behaviour in place. So if you can move the positive benefit to the place where it supports the behaviour you want then people will follow very quickly. A good NLP Practitioner Training Course will give you tools, models and techniques to apply this to individuals and teams.
Rintu Basu is the only NLP and Hypnotic Persuasion Trainer in the UK. Having worked with businesses, the police service and the financial sector. His latest venture is developing NLP in Scotland through good quality public NLP training courses.
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