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Be “Other-directed”

What can you do to influence your listeners to “buy” what you’re talking about?

Offer a personal benefit.

Whether you’re providing a status update in a project meeting, presenting a recommendation, or interviewing for a new job, you are selling…selling a concept, a service, a solution, and yes, You.

Your listeners, the “buyers”, are looking for personal value. They want to know how your information applies to them personally. How will it help them with their own jobs? … in their own lives?

If you want your listeners to “buy” what you’re speaking about, then focus on the benefit they want to get from you. At In-Person Communications, we call it being “other-directed”.

Your listeners want 3 things from you:

  • Make it painless—avoid mannerisms that might distract them or make them uncomfortable
  • Keep it brief—give them back some precious time
  • Provide a benefit—that’s what they want to hear

A recent newsletter from Hollister Creative referred to the importance of emotion in buying decisions ( The lead article mentions successful B2B marketers, who are “thinking about all that is on the line, personally, for the human decision-maker”.

Next time you prepare for a critical communications situation, identify how you and your information connect on an emotional level and help your listeners personally. Be other-directed.