The question that proves everyone NEEDS you!

12th September 2023

We all need to sell ourselves to others – at work, at home, in interviews, to colleagues, to strangers, when networking…

… but, when selling yourself, it’s hard to get the right level of control.

For instance, if we try and control the whole thing – for example, by banging on about our past achievements – we’ll put people off.

But if we have no control – for example, we wait for them to ask questions about us – they might not ask us anything! So that doesn’t work either.

Instead, here’s a great way to sell yourself. It has two steps:

  1. AFTERs – identify why other people are better-off AFTER you. Do they make more money, save time, reduce costs, reduce risk, look good to their bosses, have more fun, etc?
  2. Question – turn these AFTERs into a question

Clearly, this needs an example!

So, example 1: when I’m speaking to salespeople:

  • AFTERs – the main reason salespeople are better-off AFTER me is they’ll WIN more SALES, FASTER
  • Question – which means I can ask them the question “are you WINNING as many SALES as you’d like, as FAST as you’d like?”

If they reply “no, I’m not”…

  • I ask a few more questions about why that is
  • After hearing their answers, hopefully I can say “I can help you with that”
  • They ask “how?”
  • And I can now sell myself to them, in a way they find appropriate, relevant and valuable

Example 2: when I’m speaking to a leader:

  1. AFTERs – they are better-able to IMPRESS, INSPIRE and INFLUENCE others
  2. Question – “When you’re speaking to your team, do you always feel you have the skills and confidence to IMPRESS, INSPIRE and INFLUENCE them?”

If they reply “no”, I follow-up the same way – I ask for more info, and then – if I can help – say “I can help you with that”. “How?” And off we go…

I love this Tip. For many reasons.

One: it works.

Another: it’s better than the alternatives. No control = horrible. Trying to grab control by banging on about yourself (what we call ‘showing up and throwing up’) = ugh!

Action Point

  • Identify your AFTERs
  • Work backwards to craft your question
  • Ask this question every time it’s relevant (which is surprisingly often!

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