When getting to know each other in conversation, men typically have a very different dynamic than women. Men’s dynamic is a sort of “one-ups-manship.” They establish what each is interested in and who is better or more knowledgeable in each area.
Women find this approach tiresome. If you are a man establishing a professional relationship with a woman, you’re going to have to change your game to keep her interested.
Women don’t care about pecking orders and hierarchies. They want to know what they have in common with other people. When selling to women, keep the mantra, “Me too!” in mind.
Here’s one effective way to look for “Me Too!” Moments in your sales conversations with women. You’ve probably noticed that women are always trading compliments. “What a great scarf you’re wearing!” or “I love that book you’re reading! Great taste in literature!” And the woman receiving the compliment usually responds with a story, such as,
“Buying this book was a complete accident. I grabbed the first thing on the newsstand at the airport when I realized I had forgotten my Kindle and was late for my flight. Turns out to be fantastic, though!”
When getting to know a woman in a prospecting situation, try addressing appropriate compliments to the client, listening to her stories, and identifying points of commonality with her. After hearing the woman’s airport book buying story, you could ask, “Oh, so do you fly often? I do, too.” Women are looking for other people who belong to the same “tribes” they do, and now you’ve just joined her jetsetter tribe.
Being part of her tribe and understanding the frequent flyer lifestyle could lead directly to her discussing her tight schedule and why it’s so important for her to find a financial advisor with the acumen to look after her investments while she’s busy with her career and family. And because she feels you understand her, she will view you as a friend and advisor instead of someone just after her business.
P.S. Warning to men, here! When you identify subjects you have in common with women clients, keep in mind that you’re trying to establish what you both share and what makes you the same. You’re not trying to compete for the top spot in who has flown to the most airports or read the most books. Women find it distasteful when a simple getting-to-know-you conversation turns competitive. Remember to think in terms of “Me too!”