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This winter, Key Notes On Travel has partnered with Jodi Fogel, a senior master trainer at Sales Gravy to present a three-part webinar series titled Sales EQ: The Emotional Experience Matters.

jodi fogel

During the kick-off session, Fogel spoke about the five disciplines of ultra-high performance. They include emotional self-control, fanatical prospecting, time discipline, an obsession with win probability and a virtuoso with people. In the second half of the session, Fogel explained how achieving a virtuoso with people means mastering people skills. 

Fogel laid it all out: “Being virtuosos with people means you're able to leverage human behavior to help influence buying decisions, build connections [and then] win probability in your favour.”

According to her, everybody sits somewhere on the empathy scale of zero to ten which reveals how “other-focused” you are. This ranges from unfeeling (people with zero empathy) to hyper-empathic (people who feel just about everything).  

Fogel posited the average travel advisor will rank somewhere between three and seven. If you’re a five or less, you tend to be more outcome focused. That doesn’t mean you don’t care about people, she reassured, it just means that you’re extremely driven; you’re all about the outcome. 

“And then if you're a six or seven, that means you're really great at relationships,” Fogel elaborated. “You love people. You connect really [well] and you build relationships really easily.”

But how does it all relate to closing deals?

Fogel indicated if you're a six or greater, you flourish in selling situations. If you’re anywhere below a five, Fogel warned that advisors may unintentionally skip vital interpersonal cues during the sales process.

“[If you’re a five or less], you tend to rush the process. You tend to talk over people. You tend to not be a very good listener,” she said. “On the other hand, people who are higher on the empathy scale sometimes never seal the deal because they’re afraid of feeling pushy.”

How do you acquire the people skills you’re lacking?

First, assess where on the empathy spectrum you are. Where do you think you are? Then have a friend or colleague affirm (or refute) your perception. 

“If you are a five or less, you have to be able to stop talking. You have to write yourself a little note that says, ‘Shut up. Don't talk. Ask questions,'” Fogel half-joked. “Clients respond much better if you’re willing to hear their concerns and then react to them.”

busy introverting

If you’re the introverted type who fears coming across as pushy, Fogel suggested giving some thought to what outcome you’re seeking in a given interaction before initiating the conversation.

“You have to be focused on making sure that when you start a conversation with a client, you have already identified what you're going to ask for.”

This means connecting with your client on a more personal level.

“As humans, we're pulled to people who are like us,” said Fogel. “If you can find a way to bring a conversation back to your client’s values, you’ll have a client for life."

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