There is one fundamental question that all sales people and managers must think about and ask every day, “What if you thought of things differently?” Sadly, I’m not certain we consciously consider this issue enough.
This question is the foundation of our engagement customer engagement strategies. It gets customers to think about how our solutions might be a better fit than our competitors. Or it gets them to challenge the status quo. It may get them to rethink how they get things done, how they might grow, how they might address new opportunities.
This question is the foundation of every coaching discussion a manager has with each person on her team. Getting people to think differently about what they do, with whom, how and why, is critical to driving performance.. Whether the person is a top performer or struggling, challenging them to think about what they might do differently is key to getting them to improve performance and grow.
And at the top of organizations, top executives must constantly challenge themselves with this idea. How might they do things differently? How do we grow and improve? How do we address new opportunities? How do we address challenges?
When we don’t constantly challenge ourselves or our customers with this question, we stagnate. We don’t recognize there may be ways to improve. Doing things the way we have always done them leads us to stop growing. And, ultimately, it dooms us to failure or irrelevance.
This is the question we must challenge ourselves, our customers, and our people with every day; “What if you thought of things differently?”