“People do not care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
— Theodore Roosevelt
Studies show that people do not buy rationally but emotionally. However, the vast majority of businesses market themselves using statistics, rankings, and other vanity metrics. In hundreds of client panels and feedback interviews, I have never heard anyone mention those as reasons for choosing a business partner. It usually comes down to these two basics:
· Customers believe a business really knows them, their company, their industry and understands their challenges and goals and what makes them tick.
· They’ve seen examples of how this business solved similar problems and heard good things about other customers’ experience.
None of this has anything to do with the stats of your company. Instead, it requires one of the most important traits in human psychology… empathy.
Empathy allows us to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes and understand their motivations, priorities, and pain points. It shifts your interest in closing a sale away from simply reaching a quota towards a genuine interest in helping solve your customer’s problem.
Empathy is one of the key factors that influence emotional intelligence – which can have a profound impact on the success of your business. In fact, ninety percent of the top business performers also rank high in emotional intelligence. The good news is that emotional intelligence can be developed and improved with practice – and it’s a great way to build connections with prospects, customers, employees – and pretty much everyone in your life.
Emotional intelligence allows us to be more effective problem solvers by helping us focus not so much on the “what” of any given situation, but the “why.” This is important in cultivating fans. Simon Sinek, author of the classic book, “Start With Why,” discusses this in detail in his TEDTalk on how great leaders inspire action.
Traditional lore advises against mixing business with emotions. But the truth is, we can make huge strides in building relationships and increasing engagement when we act from a place of positive, intelligent emotion.