by Whitney Sales

“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.” Nora Roberts

I am a true believer in this statement. Here are helpful tips that can increase the likelihood of success in any request.

  1. Make your request clear and actionable. It is my belief that people generally want to help others. As a manager and salesperson, the art of deciphering other requests has become second nature, but most people aren’t mind readers, nor do they have the incentive to try to be. People need to know what you’re asking for or they can’t help. In addition, you need to make that request easy to act upon. Don’t make someone else work to help you, unless intended.
  2. Frame your request for success. How you frame, meaning what you say before and after a request, is incredibly important. The information you present leading up to the request can be used to handle objections, present value, create empathy or set you up for failure. If you know where your audience is coming from, you will have a good idea about what information will be helpful in getting you to a yes.
  3. Get right with what you are asking for. Seventy percent of our communication is nonverbal. Personal psychology plays a big roll in a successful request. At times we may feel we’re asking too much from people, and in other cases we feel like someone ‘should’ have already done what we want. Vocal variation, intonation, pace, depth of voice and energy behind a request play a huge role in any ask. Mumbling, high pitch voices, excited pace and up ticks on statements can position a person from a place of weakness. All of these can and will communicate the nonverbal message in the back of your mind.
  4. Let go of expectations. It is my opinion that people do things because they want to, not because they are obligated to. Obligation creates resentment and distrust. If you find yourself motivating someone to do something because it’s their job or because you said so, it is time to take a step back. Adults are not children and treating them like one sets you up to be the recipient of childlike behavior, and not in the good way.
  5. Know the balance in your emotional bank account. Years ago, I took a training course with executive coach Bryan Franklin, who taught me about an ‘emotional bank account’. Coined by Stephen Covey“It basically means that anyone with whom we have a relationship with, whether it be our coworkers, family or friends, we maintain a personal ‘emotional’ bank account with them. This account begins on a neutral balance. And just as with any bank account, we can make deposits and withdrawals. However, instead of dealing with units of monetary value, we deal with emotional units.”, as defined by Life Training OnlineEmotional bank accounts apply to business relationships just as they do personal relationships. The balance in your emotional bank account will play a large role in the success of any request

Featured Resources

What is sales?

Let's redefine the skewed perception of sales. Everyone does it, no one talks about it. Sometimes you don’t even know when you’re doing it. I’ll let the cat out of the bag: If you’re doing business, you are in the business of selling! Repeat after me. Everything is a...

read more

More Content Like This

Step 4: A founders guide to pricing your product

We hear about the challenges of pricing over and over again when talking to clients. There’s the concern of pricing too high and losing a customer, pricing too low and missing out on valuable revenue, modeling pricing wrong and diluting your customer acquisition...

read more

Step 3: Product Position & Distribution

Company and product positioning is a vital step in the formation of your sales and distribution strategy. While marketing and sales differ in many ways, they are really just two sides of the same coin. You can’t have one without having the other, although they fulfill...

read more

Being a female CEO in Silicon Valley

Last night, female CEO's got real on the struggles of creating, running and scaling companies. While they share many of the same challenges of their male counterparts, it's refreshing and inspiring to hear the tales from a woman's perspective, one that is usually...

read more

Early days of Hootsuite’s sales team

How Steve Johnson, CRO of Hootsuite, grew the Customer Success and Sales team from a 5 to a 300 person organization using Vision-Based Several months ago, at an event hosted by e27 and Red Dot Ventures in Singapore, I had the chance to hear a talk by Steve Johnson,...

read more