Darren here, coming to you from Salerno in Italy.
I have mentioned before that my Italian is not as strong as it could be and my half Italian wife speaks even less… (go figure)
What this means is I have studied a lot of words very quickly but have also chosen to eat and buy from restaurants/shops that provide English subtitles. This makes life easier for everyone including the waiters or shop owners.
One of the thing that my wife said when we arrived in Italy a few weeks ago was, if you are not sure what they are saying, just say yes and nod…. really??
Come on…. seriously, who would do that? (plenty apparently)
Of course, being the deep thinker I am… this made me wonder how many of our clients/prospects fully understand everything we talk about when we meet with them… do you believe your prospects or clients understand everything you say 100%? Or are they simply nodding an agreeing?
What if they don’t?
Are they likely to ask you to clarify?
Will they simply nod and agree because they do not want to appear silly?
You see if there is one thing I have learned about dealing with business owners (especially smaller business owners), it is that they very rarely like to show any form of weakness. Meaning, there is huge potential for them to be nodding and agreeing with you because they are scared to look silly and ask a question that (perhaps) they should already know the answer to.
This is why it is important to gain clarification through all communication with your clients. While most business owners may appear clued up or say all the right things, we do have to remember that 50% of all businesses dissolve inside the first two years… so really, how much do they really know and how much do they pretend they know?
Something to think about when you meet with your next new prospect… how will you check they truly understand and how will you make them feel comfortable to say they don’t?
One of the best ways is to run through some FAQ’s that are designed to handle some questions that a client should ask but is embarrassed to, plus making them feel normal for asking anything by saying things like “95% of business owners like to get clarity around XYZ, is there more I can explain here?”
Remember, this is not about you showing how much you know, it’s about you showing how much you want to help. Simplify as much as you can, make them feel comfortable and also praise them on their success and make them feel good about talking to you. There is nothing worse than using technical jargon to sound intelligent when more simpler less complicated terms can be used.
Of course if you must use technical jargon, make sure they fully understand and do not assume that because they nod and agree that they do.