Comme vous le savez, je prône que le développement des affaires est avant tout l’établissement d’une relation de confiance basée sur l’expertise. En ce sens, il faut faire la preuve d’un engagement véritable envers nos clients et nos prospects. Mais pour se faire, un des éléments les plus important à éviter est l’égocentrisme. Alors, plutôt que vous écrire cette semaine moi-même une chronique sur le sujet, je vous transmet deux textes courts dès plus intéressants sur le sujet.
Is Self-Orientation Killing Your Trustworthiness
by Charles H. Green on Tuesday, October 5, 2010 (post #794)
Self-Orientation Is About Where Your Attention is Focused
When you are standing in front of a room presenting, and your pulse rate is high, your palms sweating, your breath shallow and fast – in those moments, your self-orientation is quite high, because you are focusing on yourself.
The key to successful presenting lies first and foremost in getting out of the trap of self-orientation. You need to have the calmness, confidence and curiosity to see the audience and its needs rather than to see them as instruments of torture for you.
For synonyms or drivers of high self-orientation think self-obsessed, self-conscious, self-loathing, self-aggrandizing, full of self, un-self-confident.
When we are operating from high self-orientation, we do not hear others. We do not hear their questions, desires, fears, or emotions in general. The noise inside our own head drowns them out.
The psychology goes like this: if your level of self-orientation is low, you can pay attention to someone else. If you pay attention to someone, they experience that as caring. If someone thinks you care about them, they are likely to trust you.
Conversely, if your attention is focused on yourself, others become acutely aware of it and infer that you do not care about them. Rightly or wrongly, they then decide you are untrustworthy.
It is hard to pay attention, therefore hard to care, and therefore hard to be trustworthy if your attention is all on yourself – your self-orientation is high.
Self-Orientation Does Not Mean Selfishness
You may be selfish, in which case you are probably pretty self-oriented. But you may also be highly unselfish yet attached to the idea of others seeing you as unselfish. That is also high self-orientation.
Sometimes people equate low self-orientation with passivity or with willingness to give away business, cut price, or otherwise let the other party “win.” It means nothing of the kind.
A low self-orientation is critical to legitimate client focus. You cannot be focused on customers for the sake of the customer if you are obsessed with the moral activity in your own brain. Since client focus is a driver of profitability, this leads to a wonderful paradox: if you focus on achieving profitability by way of client focus, you will sub-optimize. Yet if you focus on the good of the client, rather than the funds you can extract from their accounts, you will achieve greater profitability – by treating it as a byproduct rather than as a goal.
Low self-orientation is not some soft form of capitalism. It is rooted in the simple psychological observation that human beings return good for good, but only money for goods. Retention economics and returns to scale in the real world are driven heavily by a sense that parties are out to help each other, not to gouge each other. Low self-orientation drives higher profitability, not lower.
I will write another blog this week giving some practical examples of high self-orientation, so that you can spot them as they arise. In the meantime, let me offer a simple practical tool for diagnosing high self-orientation:
Seek humility. That does not mean thinking less of yourself; it means thinking of yourself less.
Making Excuses To Strangers Is A Sign Of Self-Orientation
by Charles H. Green on Thursday, October 7, 2010
Earlier this week, I wrote about the critical role played in the Trust Equation by the factor of Self-Orientation. The brief version is:
The biggest killer of trustworthiness is high self-orientation – a tendency to focus too much on ourselves.
That’s the theory. Now let’s have fun with some examples.
With a tip o’ the hat to Jeff Foxworthy, who invented this peculiarly American quasi-haiku format:
· If you find yourself making excuses to a stranger for something a good friend would have forgotten about days ago – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you lose more than 45 minutes of sleep re-running what you should have said in that conversation – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you go from thinking you’re the greatest to thinking you are worthless – and back again – within two minutes – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you apologize more than three times for something pretty trivial – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you are pretty sure that that song really was about you – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you immediately lose interest in a potential customer when it appears they won’t buy this month – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If it bothers you that probably no song will ever be about you – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you take great pride in beating your grandmother at Scrabble (and you’re over 20, and she’s over 80) – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you are presenting to a client, and the client disagrees about an issue, and your pulse rate goes up 20 points – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you’re worried that everyone’s always talking about you – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If it worries you that no one is ever talking about you – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If someone suggests a change in something you did, and you respond by explaining why you did it — three times in a row – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you think, “wow, I just did the same thing last month” constitutes empathy – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If a potential client says, “your prices are too high,” and it makes you feel attacked or angry – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you think self-flagellation is a virtue – you might be highly self-oriented.
· If you were in charge of the company picnic and it rained, and you feel guilty – you might be highly self-oriented.
Here’s a hint. Your job is to do the best you can to help others—and to give up control over the outcome. An expectation on your part is just a pre-meditated resentment.
Charles H. Green is founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates LLC; read more about Charlie at http://trustedadvisor.com/cgreen/
You can follow him on twitter @CharlesHGreen