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Project an Agendaless Presence

When you laser-focus your attention on the physician, nurse, healthcare administrator, or case worker sitting across from you and shift your energy to determine how best to serve that client, you project an agendaless presence. Of course, both parties benefit from the High-Return Relationship; the point is that the real rewards come from shifting your focus from what you can get to what you can give.

Projecting an agendaless presence requires listening without thinking about what you will get out of the conversation. Instead of thinking about how you can make a sale, laser-focus on hearing your customer. How can the new drug your pharmaceutical company offers or the new medical equipment your company distributes benefit the client? What are the customer’s specific concerns in light of the new ACA legislation, and how can you help? When you project an agendaless presence, you thoughtfully ask the right questions and listen carefully to the answers.

An agendaless presence demonstrates respect by showing that you value the client’s insight and care about his or her unique needs. When you focus on the benefits you can offer instead of scheming for self-gain, you sow the seeds of mutual respect, a key characteristic of High-Return Relationships.

  • “Stars in these fields [sales and client management] do not approach a customer or client with the determination to make a sale.... They would rather cultivate a relationship where their advice is trusted than torpedo their reliability just to make a sale.”
  • —Daniel Goleman, Social Intelligence3
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