Recall the last time you attended a concert, whether classical, country, rock, blues, jazz. You anticipate the event. You enter the concert hall, take your seat, hear all the buzz of excited concert-goers around you. The atmosphere is charged and the concert has yet to begin!
The artist walks onto the stage. Everyone jumps to their feet, wildly cheering and applauding. Electric anticipation of what will follow.
The artistry is starting to happen.
The music begins. You hear the lyrics and opening chords. You recognize the melody! The notes begin to float forward from the stage.
The charged particles of energy from the audience in the auditorium flow towards the artist on the stage. Artistry happens at the interface of these two force fields. The artist and audience feed off each other throughout the concert. It’s an artistic tsunami.
It is magic, it is communication, it is insightful, it is inspiring.
Think about creating artistry in your professional technical and sales relationships. Selling technology doesn’t have to be dry, static, informative, dispassionate. Technology unlocks the key to functionality and possibility on the client side of the table.
There is a fine art to understanding the dynamics of selling technology that creates engagement, comprehension, collaboration, delight and loyalty. Create professional artistry.
As many of you know, I don’t compartmentalize personal experiences from professional ones. Just as I encourage you, I pull from my own experiences singing gigs in a Manhattan Transfer type of ensemble at parties. I still recall the electricity of walking out on stage as part of an opera chorus at Music Hall in Cincinnati or singing with my university concert choir at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center.
I recall taking a dance class in London when the folks from the Martha Graham Dance Company who were performing at Covent Garden later that week, simply walked in the class and took their places at the barre. My jaw dropped. The class began. They were falling all over the place! Why? Because they trusted their technique so much that they took chances with each move, risking lack of balance, in order to fully find the limits of their current physicality and artistry.
I learned a lot from watching them in that class, and talking to them later about moving beyond technique in everything we do – even during performances- and embracing risk to develop artistry.
No matter how enormous or how small the space in which we create our professional artistry, there is an intimacy created when our energy and expertise connects with our colleagues’ and customers’.
There is a lot of emphasis on becoming an expert and thought leader in your field. I suggest thinking beyond those titles we all have chased or attained. You have similar experiences to tap into. Locate them and make them fluid with the professional you.
If you wish to become more than instead of same old same old, become an artist in your field.
When you work with colleagues and customers, you have the opportunity for your passion and knowledge about your technology or solution to flow forward towards that customer. Even if you are communicating via video, email or wireless telecom.
There’s a simple message for you to communicate: obtaining client trust in your professional artistry. It requires you to be comfortable and confident along this interface between your technology and your ability to speak with people and not sound robotic.
The goal of customer conversations is to create the artistic interface where each of you “gets” one another. That type of artistry creates trust and results in collaboration between the buyer and seller.
That’s what we’re going to be working on this summer. Together. 😉
Babette N. Ten Haken, Founder & President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers®, LLC, brings entrepreneurial mojo and business- and revenue-producing collaboration and communication tools to small and mid-sized businesses and startups. Download her newest White Paper at her Free Resources Page. She was named one of the Top 50 Sales & Marketing Influencers 2013. Her book, Do YOU Mean Business? focuses on technical / non-technical collaboration strategies and tools. You can download the first chapter here.