When I work with sales teams I encourage them to think of their sales presentations as theatrical performances. In other words, edit their remarks to a nub, don’t step on their punch words, don’t distract with unnecessary movement, work on the emotional connection, and tell stories.
You may benefit from Mike Pniewski’s experiences as an actor for the past 20 years and teaching acting for 10 of those years. Thought you would like to listen in on our conversation.
Mike said, “Students would ask, ‘How do you know what they want when you go and audition?’ I would usually answer, ‘They want you to be brilliant!’ The student would press on, ‘Right but how can you do that unless they tell you exactly how they want it done?’ ‘How they want it done,’ I would say, ‘is by you bringing the character to life as you see it. Give them your truth and show them your uniqueness.’
We live in a world that makes us take constant stock in how we are pleasing or not pleasing others. If we were to adjust our behavior and methods to satisfy every situation or person we meet, the real person inside us would get lost. We all bring unique truth and perspective to the world. Sometimes our rush to please others makes us quickly forget what is most pleasing about ourselves.
Just as I would tell my students, ‘Speak your truth, with your own voice. Find those ideas and topics that have inspired you and go inspire others. You can rattle off lots of impressive statistics and quote famous people, but in the end your various audiences want to hear from you. Your dreams, your techniques, your success, your failures – all of it. Presented in a way that will help them succeed, offering them effective solutions for their life.’
From an actor’s standpoint, our job is to become the best “we” can be and show others how to do the same.”
Take your own uniqueness to your next sales call, staff meeting or presentation. “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who are alive.”