Superstition and magic acts
Wow, hard times mean that we are all more careful about where and how we spend money! Sadly the truth couldn't be further away, more and more people are buying on superstition! More and more people are buying into the world of the con artist than ever before, more and more people are buying a pig in a poke!
Superstition is attributing an effect to an unrelated cause, it like saying that adding a photo to my Curriculum Vitae is why I was interviewed, without being told that my photo is the reason or if I was to have gone out and done charity work after applying for a interview and getting the interview and thinking it was because of the charity work, karma. Currently I am seeing more and more badly drawn relationships between cause and effect features for buyers. I think that a lot of people were duped into believing the book The Secret was really a true, at least the only people that were benefiting from the so called Secret were all aware there was force of nature (not a law of attraction, which by the way is gravity) at work, it was attention and distraction; the same law of nature that allows us to be fooled by magicians.
I work in training and training is correlated to effect, what we do is measured in certain aspects of your expected outcome. I can’t tell you that speaking more clearly will increase yours sales and reduce your customer complaints. I can’t tell you that the way I express my ideas is definitely more advantageous as I work in the world of probability. I can tell you I have been very successful using certain methods in the past and I would expect these to be successful in the future but the only way I can prove to you what works is by measuring your results. I need to validate each and every program I can’t assume a result based on the previous results as there is far to many variable in training.
I am amazed at how many companies claim to offer results that they just can’t stand behind, there would be no way to attribute the relationship between the cause and the effects that some people claim. Its like the old joke do you know what they call alternative medicines that have been proven to cure people of disease? they call it medicine.
If you are buying anything you should always ask for proof of concept! Which no one can give you 100% of the time, but you should ask anyway. Once you have bought make sure to pre-measure and post measure the key areas of importance toward your desired outcomes. There of course is risk to buying anything, but you can mitigate the risk by measuring your own outcomes and putting more thought into what might just be a lie generated to help a company sell more products versus a genuine miracle product. It a fool who takes it that just because he paid for something thinks that’s what he got.
Ask yourself about some of the more popular claims you have heard and then ask if it were so, why would these people be selling it the way they are? Or is it just the case of it sounds likely so I will believe it.
For those of you who don’t know what a pig in a poke is, it has to do with a con artist trick of the past where farmers were tricked into believing they were buying a pig that was bagged before their eyes only to find that a stray pup or other animal had been switched for the pig they believed they had purchased after leaving the market.
Its not just the people that are dishonest and foolish, sadly the people not buying the product and services that they need for their own survival; because they are scared stiff of being ripped off, as well as the others that are being ripped off (partly because they are incompetent) and or are spending their time covering up their mistakes or creating buffers zones around themselves to keep their jobs. All of these people need to be weeded from our companies so that business can move at a pace conducive to good performance for all, and of course we all need to be better trained and motivated to validate our decision based on logical reasoning.
Superstition goes further that just the gullible and training is a good example. Customer service training in many companies does absolutely nothing to enable better service by the staff, all it does is to tell the staff that customer service is a subject of interest and that is the “why” service improves. It works on the same principals of The Secret or Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. If I sit in a room with people on behalf of a company for a day, talking about customer service everyone will be more interested in customer service by the end of the day, but no one will be better equipped to provide good service.
The worse part about superstition is that we start to believe in our bad performance, one of the worst things a trainer can do is to create a magic act, my most favourite of these magic acts is the smile while you dial magic act. If you smile while speaking to customers more of them will buy from you, or if you smile while speaking to customers you will receive less complaints. The truth is that smiling isn’t important but it you are concentrating on doing something magic while trying to change an outcome will create micro changes in your process, demeanour and ultimately the outcome. Yet good customer service training is about understanding cause and effect, that if a customer is upset it might be inappropriate to smile at that person.
I see a lot of good people promoting bad! They do it because they misattributed the cause of an effect and believed the promoter.
There are far more magic acts in selling than anywhere else, I would guess it has a lot to do with the fact that we seldom know why customers do and don’t buy from us. So we start to think we have a magic act, a special closing technique, a process that leads us down the road further. I experienced superstition early in selling and found it worked great for a while, and then it stopped.
Of course it is important to remember that a placebo is just as effective some times as medicine, but we should be invested in finding things that are proven to enhance our business opportunities. It may also be important to realise that most people now lie because they see it as a disadvantage not to lie or follow someone else’s lie or worst of all they believe it to be true. The problem here is that it’s still a lie and you need to be responsible when you are a buyer.
This article was promoted by revisiting a series of television commercials I watch as a child created buy a group called the better business bureau the images always stated that when a deal was to good to be true a bell should go off to warn us of the danger. Over the last four years I have heard bells ringing constantly