Photo: Flickr / Angelo González
When it comes to successfully landing business deals, experience, background and education are definitely important.But you also need to be able to sell yourself.
offers pointers on how to make yourself as appealing as possible.
The authors, Adam Riccoboni and Daniel Callaghan, focus on tips to appeal to the “irrational,” emotional reasons that people choose to do business with you. Examples of these “irrational” factors include how much someone likes you merely by examining how you look and sound.
We pared the book down to a few easy steps that will help you with your next business pitch, lunch meeting or job interview.
'For someone to believe in you, you must first believe in yourself,' Riccoboni and Callaghan write.
Most people show their low self-esteem through speaking and body language and fail to gain the respect of others. The authors suggest choosing a 'target' for how you want life to be and working toward it. The more you put yourself out there, the more confident you will be.
90 per cent of all communication is non-verbal, the authors say. Don't look down or cross your arms: these are seen as signs you aren't confident. Make an effort to smile, make eye contact and appear calm throughout your meeting.
Go into the meeting with knowledge about the company, people and culture. Showing that you care enough to be knowledgeable will make people trust you, Riccoboni and Callaghan say.
Consider ahead of time any questions you might be asked and have answers for them.
Don't focus on talking about how great you are, because people don't care. Instead make your value proposition about the company and ways you could help improve it.
Think of your friends, family, former colleagues or customers and whether there are any business opportunities in the network. If people know you, they are more likely to trust you and recommend you to others.
To 'appeal to the irrational,' it is necessary to make potential business partners feel like your friend. Talk to them about their hobbies and interests so they will look forward to seeing you again.
'People like to do business with people who are already successful,' the authors say.
Even if you don't have a lot of experience, you can still create the impression of success. Wear nice clothes and make sure you are well-groomed.
Even if you ace introductions, a bad resume will leave a lasting impression. Make sure yours is perfect and personalised with examples of why your experience makes you an ideal person to do business with.
Take time to recognise other people's emotions and try to see through their eyes. Not only will this have the immediate effect of making people trust you, it will also build relationships for networking in the future.
In order to ensure you can keep promises, always offer less than what you know you could do. This way, your performance record will be perfect and the people you do business with will continue to trust you.
Everybody is rejected and fails, the authors say. But the more persistent you are, the more likely it is that you will find success in the future. Learn from your mistakes and move on.
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