I was in a meeting with one of the members of the executive team of a new client who is responsible for the customer experience this morning, and I asked why their customers buy from them. He had a great answer and turned the question around on me. I was thinking about the topic and what I knew of this client in my answers which led me astray vs. common sense. Why do we leave our common sense at the door at times?!?! In essence, he referred to what he said anyone who has gone door to door would know (if they cleared their mind of extraneous information and thought about the question, I can attest) — the answer is they buy if they like you (at least that is a good place to start).
As my ProVisors group says, "know, like, trust, refer." No one starts at refer. Instead, similar to my client — of course we have to be aware of someone; then, we start with "like". In case you are wondering, OF COURSE, you must be credible and have a good product/service but it still won't get to that point if you aren't likeable.
One tip to implement this week:
It seems it should be easy to figure out a way to be likeable; however, I don't think that's necessarily true. One way to think about this is to start by thinking about what makes you like people. Certainly, everyone likes working with certain co-workers over others. Why is that? Obviously, I'd never suggest we play silly games or lie to be liked; however, there are a few easy things you can consider. Perhaps just start with a smile. I found when I was a server in college that smiling alone made me more likeable (and generated larger tips!). Instead of talking, how about you listen? There are countless tips and ideas to consider. Start with one that is meaningful to you. It doesn't seem like there is a downside!