Sales and Life Purpose

Why is Life Purpose important in Selling ?

Sales and Life Purpose ... why the connection ?

It's all about alignment and something called Congruence.

As a salesperson you are much more likely to succeed if you are congruent.

"For too long you have bought into the idea that the business you do and the life you lead are completely separate. What Todd Duncan has learned in his twenty-two years of sales is the polar opposite: When you discover how to connect who you are and what you are about in your selling career, the results will be phenomenal and long-lasting."
(Todd Duncan is the author of High Trust Selling)

"To salespeople this means when they view the sales process or their expected sales behavior as being inconsistent with their values or skills, a conflict results that derails their effectiveness" ...from SellingPower … 

"Behavioral Congruence = Results Congruence"
Colleen Francis … Engage Selling

What do I mean by Life Purpose ?

Well I'm not referring to it here as though it's your ultimate reason for living, your mission in life, not quite anyway.

What's it got to do with sales, well that will become apparent over the next few minutes as you read on and you'll see it's relation to being congruent when you are selling.

We Seek our Goals within a Certain Perspective

Most of us have a path in life or some goals we may be chasing after.
Sometimes they may be simple goals, like survival or lasting another week at this job. Sometimes they may be grand goals like saving the world from Global Warming.

Within our goals / objectives / mission we tend to live out our life story.

While we participate in this journey we pay attention to certain content. 
We perceive certain aspects of reality as more meaningful. We perceive some aspects of life, (our journey), as more important than others.

Paying attention.
I'm now going to ask you to watch and listen for certain cues in the behaviour of your clients that would allow you to communicate with them in a way that will not only make you more understandable but be much more meaningful to them. That would be useful, wouldn't it ?

5 Categories of Life Purpose

Shortly I'm going to list five broad categories of Life Purpose.

As you read them I'd like you to think about how they apply to you. If you examine the things around you, what you most often do and the things you say it will help you identify these Life Purposes in you and that in turn will aid your understanding of them (and of yourself as an added bonus).

People fulfil their dreams and express their identity via their Life Purpose.

The five Life Purposes are:

  • Acquiring
  • Accomplishing
  • Belonging
  • Experiencing
  • Learning

How Can You Know Someone's Life Purpose

People express these life purposes in everyday life with the things they own. What they do. How they relate to people. How they speak.

You need to also be aware that people usually hold more than one of these life purposes as important. 
Often they exist in pairs.

So, you walk into a prospect's office and there are a lot of pictures of family and work colleagues on the wall and on their desk.
What does that imply ?
Perhaps that relationship, belonging or community is really important to them.

You walk into another client's office and there are books everywhere and certificates on the wall relating to the courses they have completed.
What does that imply ?
Perhaps that learning, knowledge and information are important to this person ?

What if your customer is constantly talking about the things they have just bought for their home or what toys they want to buy or the new car they want to own ?
What does that imply ?
Perhaps that acquiring things is important to them?

How Can You Use This in Selling

So, how can you use this in selling to them ?

Well you offer your product or service couched in terms that are in alignment with their dominant Life Purposes.

In the first example above you would talk about working as a team. Forming a strong business relationship between your two companies. How dealing with your company would strengthen the relationship between the various parts of your prospect's business.

In the second example you may talk about how your company has accumulated specialised knowledge about your product or service. About how your extensive research has given you a body of knowledge about how to use your offering that will ensure your customer gets better results.

In the final example you could talk to this customer about how using your service will allow them to make more money and what things they could buy with that money. You may give this client small, useful promotional gifts.

See how it works ? 
Make sense to you ? 
Do you have a handle on the concept ?

Remember what I wrote before though, these Life Purposes often hang around in pairs.

An Example ... align your purpose with theirs

To make it even more clear let me use myself as an example. 

I have an enormous bookshelf at home crammed with books.
I often hear comments from people about how I'm always doing something.
I love finishing projects.
Got it ?
If you wanted to sell stuff to me you would talk to me about how your service would increase my understanding of "X" and allow me to get a lot more done.
Ahhh.. music to my ears.

But wait there's more.

You see not only do your customers have Life Purposes, SO DO YOU. So, if you want to be at your MOST INFLUENTIAL you need to be expressing your life purpose as you sell to your prospect's life purpose.

To make this crystal clear let's say I am selling something to the first prospect I used above, the one to whom relating / belonging / people were very important. Let's say in talking with that person I found out that being/ experiencing were important to them as well.

More Examples

So, their life purposes are: people and being.

My life purposes are: learning and activity.

In selling to that person I would explain how my knowledge and ability to act and accomplish things would bring results that allow them to feel relaxed in their job, accepted for the good job they were doing for their work community and how the harmony in the company would be enhanced by the knowledge I bring to their company.

Furthermore, I would be very congruent in these statements because knowledge and accomplishing things IS very important to me and that's exactly how I would act to bring about improvements in my client's company.

Watch Out for Life Purpose

As you go about your selling over the next month look and listen for these Life Purposes in the people you meet and when you feel confident enough start using them in your responses to them.

Before you do that, may I ask,

"What are your Life Purposes, and are you expressing them in your work?"

Here's to YourSalesSuccess.

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