The Great Escape
Last Friday Mrs Wigg suggested I have a break from my desk and join her on a shopping trip to our favourite little organic farm shop. She closed the deal with “you know they do coffee over there now – in the garden”. It was a beautiful day and it’s an idyllic, rural spot so I was on board
At the cash till we ask for a coffee and the woman explains “it’s not a fancy espresso machine it’s a pod machine, if that’s ok”. Not our first choice but, hey, it’s the setting here that’s important.
In the lightest of breezes I take my first sip of the cappuccino and…
Oooh, it’s a shocker. The weirdest tasting cappuccino. It looks strong but tastes watery.
We start giggling and planning an escape without drinking the coffee but without offending.
Sandra comes up with “you wander nonchalantly round the front with your cup and throw it in a flower bed, then we’ll tip half of mine into your mug so it looks like we’ve at least drunk half but had an emergency and had to go”.
So basically, we’re running away from the issue. Which is ironic because I often find myself working with leaders and salespeople on addressing issues. So why do we avoid them?
The simple answer is fear. We fear the conversation will be a difficult one, we don’t want to upset the person or it will lead to a ‘bad’ outcome. And in our case, why would we want to risk spoiling a lovely morning and the relationship with our favourite shop?
Yet in that fear lies the answer to opening up a productive conversation. One where the person invites us to say what we want to say. It’s being honest and candid. And goes something like this:
“There’s something I’d like to discuss but I’m not sure how to bring it up.”
“There’s something I’d like to talk about but I’m worried it could be a difficult conversation.”
Nine times out of ten the response you get is “just say it” and the conversation gets started with both of you open to it and the person listening. Simple.
For more on the importance and how to address issues go to my YouTube Channel and watch:
For Salespeople – “Sales Masterclass 2 – Prospecting Objections”
For Leaders – “The Shortest Coaching Program for Leaders Ever”
And while you’re there check out the latest upload “Sales Masterclass 5 – Lining Up the Ducks”.