Salespersons LISTEN with their EYES

Almighty has given us a pair of ears to listen and a pair of eyes to see. The salesperson empowers himself with better hearing by adding up one pair of eyes to the existing pair of ears to listen.

Why does a salesperson listen with his pair of eyes?

This is simply because a customer seldom means what he says. The audio coming out from his mouth never supports the video that one can see in his eyes. Let me give you some examples encountered by me in real life.

S.No. What customer said? What customer meant?
1 No, I do not want your product. I will not say yes till I am sure about buying your product otherwise you will hang on like a leech.
2 The price of your product is very high. Even I do not know the right price for your product but I am sure that you will never tell me the final price in the first time.
3 The service levels of your company are not good. I like your product and want to know as to what all I can get from you under the name of good service.
4 The discount offered by you is not good. I have decided to buy your product and am now looking for the best deal from you.

Salesperson who hears things with their ears will listen to the first column above and those who listen with their eyes will listen the second column above to the respective situations.

It is important to understand at this juncture that salespersons are programmed to understand what the customer wants rather than what he is saying. This programming is done by conscious training and mentoring. One is not born with this quality.

How does a salesperson listen from his eyes?

To be able to listen with your eyes, you need to talk to the customer with an eye to eye contact. Irrespective of what you listen from your ears, believe in what you see with your eyes in the customers eye signals, facial expressions, gestures and postures.

Remember what you see as a salesperson is relevant, what you hear is irrelevant. Whatever you hear has to be aligned to what you see and not the other way round.

When evaluating body language, pay attention to the follow eye signals:
Eye gaze

  • When a person looks directly into your eyes when having a conversion, it indicates that they are interested and paying attention. However, prolonged eye contact can feel threatening. On the other hand, breaking eye contact and frequently looking away may indicate that the person is distracted, uncomfortable, or trying to conceal his or her real feelings.
  • Blinking
    Blinking is natural, but you should also pay attention to whether a person is blinking too much or too little. People often blink more rapidly when they are feeling distressed or uncomfortable. Infrequent blinking may indicate that a person is intentionally trying to control his or her eye movements. For example, a poker player might blink less frequently because he is purposely trying to appear unexcited about the hand he was dealt.
  • Pupil size
    One of the most subtle cues that eyes provide is through the size of the pupils. While light levels in the environment control pupil dilation, sometimes emotions can also cause small changes in pupil size. For example, you may have heard the phase “bedroom eyes” used to describe the look someone gives when they are attracted to another person.

Emotions Expressed Through Facial Expressions

  • Just a few examples of emotions that can be expressed via facial expressions include:
  • Happiness
  • Sadness
  • Anger
  • Surprise
  • Disgust
  • Fear
  • Confusion
  • Excitement
  • Desire
  • Contempt

Mouth expressions and movements can also be essential in reading body language. For example, chewing on the bottom lip may indicate that the individual is experiencing worry, fear, or insecurity.

Covering the mouth may be an effort to be polite if the person is yawning or coughing, but it may also be an attempt to cover up a frown of disapproval. Smiling is perhaps one of the greatest body language signals, but smiles can also be interpreted in many ways. A smile may be genuine, or it may be used to express false happiness, sarcasm, or even cynicism.

When evaluating body language, pay attention to the following mouth and lip signals:
Pursed lips

  • Pursed lips might be an indicator of distaste, disapproval, or distrust.
  • Lip biting
    People sometimes bite their lips when they are worried, anxious, or stressed.
  • Covering the mouth
    When people want to hide an emotional reaction, they might cover their mouths in order to avoid displaying a smile or smirk.
  • Turned up or down
    Slight changes in the mouth can also be subtle indicators of what a person is feeling. When the mouth is slightly turned up, it might mean that the person is feeling happy or optimistic. On the other hand, a slightly downturned mouth can be an indicator of sadness, disapproval, or even an outright grimace.

Gestures can be some of the most direct and obvious body language signals. Waving, pointing, and using the fingers to indicate numerical amounts are all very common and easy to understand gestures. Some gestures may be cultural, however, so giving a thumbs-up or a peace sign might have a completely different meaning than it might in the United States.

The following examples are just a few common gestures and their possible meanings:

  • A clenched fist can indicate anger or solidarity.
  • A thumbs up and thumbs down are often used as gestures of approval and disapproval.
  • The “Okay” gesture, made by touching together the thumb and index finger in a circle while extending the other three fingers can be used to mean okay. In some parts of Europe, however, the same signal is used to imply you are nothing. In some South American countries, the symbol is actually a vulgar gesture.
  • The V sign, created by lifting the index and middle finger and separating them to create a V-shape, means peace or victory in some countries. The arms and legs can also be useful in conveying nonverbal information. Crossing the arms can indicate defensiveness. Crossing legs away from another person may indicate dislike or discomfort with that individual. Other subtle signals such as expanding the arms widely may be an attempt to seem larger or more commanding, while keeping the arms close to the body may be an effort to minimize oneself or withdraw from attention.

When you are evaluating body language, pay attention to some of the following signals that the arms and legs may convey:

  • Crossed arms might indicate that a person is feeling defensive, self-protective, or closed-off.
  • Standing with hands placed on the hips can be an indication that a person is ready and in control, or it can also possibly be a sign of aggressiveness.
  • Clasping the hands behind the back might indicate that a person is feeling bored, anxious, or even angry.
  • Rapidly tapping fingers or fidgeting can be a sign that a person is bored, impatient, or frustrated.
  • Crossed legs can indicate that a person is feeling closed off or in need of privacy.

How we hold our bodies can also serve as an important part of body language. The term posture refers to how we hold our bodies as well as overall physical form of an individual. Posture can convey a wealth of information about how a person is feeling as well as hints about personality characteristics, such as whether a person is confident, open, or submissive.

Sitting up straight, for example, may indicate that a person is focused and paying attention to what’s going on. Sitting with the body hunched forward, on the other hand, can imply that the person is bored or indifferent.

  • When you are trying to read body language, try to notice some of the signals that a person’s posture can send.
  • Open posture involves keeping the trunk of the body open and exposed. This type of posture indicates friendliness, openness, and willingness.
  • Closed posture involves keeping the obscured or hidden often by hunching forward and keeping the arms and legs crossed. This type of posture can be an indicator of hostility, unfriendliness, and anxiety.

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