HOW CAN I BE HELPFUL TO YOU?
There are many words that are important in conversations with not only friends but also customers, prospects and referral sources. I believe that the phrase, “How can I be helpful to you” is one that should be used when speaking to a prospect, customer or potential referral source. Another variation of the phrase is “How can I be of service to you?”. (This is the one I like to use).
Pride often keeps us from asking for help, even when we need it. Avoid that fear and ask how you can be of help. I believe that by offering to help it lowers the guard of the person you are speaking with, and they become more open to you in sharing their story and likewise, more receptive in listening to yours.
To some degree this phrase may identify your management style. I am a great believer in the Servant Leadership approach to growing a business. Its premise is that in order to be a great leader you first have to be seen as a servant. Servant-first means that other people’s highest priority needs are being served.
A good definition for servant leadership may be: One who has followers whom he helps grow in stature, capacity or in some way contributes to building them into more useful and satisfied people. In my opinion, that should be the goal of every business owner when working with not only customers, but all people.
Leadership means taking responsibility for your action; it also means the willingness to risk. A leader initiates, provides the ideas and the structure and takes the risk of failure along with the chance of success.
Building trust is a side product of being a Servant Leader. That means that you have to be authentic, and you must believe what you say when you offer help. Your offer should not be intended as a manipulation to obtain an inside track to a sale. A true Servant Leader makes an unconditional offer of help. Rewards will come in due time, if deserved.
The greatest success we’ll know is helping OTHERS succeed and grow.
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