Connecting instead of selling. Has its time come?

person holding Hello! stickerI have been reading a lot of blogs and articles and attending webinars and other online events to stay tuned in to what’s happening in the world of work during the recent pandemic and one thing I have seen a lot of is an emphasis on simply connecting with customers rather than selling to them.

What is striking here is that it has taken a health crisis of epic proportions to make this happen. I mean, creating relationships built on real concern and care, isn’t that what business should be?

As much as possible, I try and attend a daily morning meeting of a group called the Ring of Renegades. This is a group of people who want to think differently about work and make meaningful, positive change that has a disruptive edge to it. Anyway, about every other meeting someone mentions how they are spending more time just reaching out to customers to talk, not about business but about life, what’s going on, how they’re feeling, how the family is doing, etc. No selling, just connecting.

What strikes me is this — ISN’T THIS HOW IT SHOULD BE?!?!

Anyone who has read my musings for any length of time knows that I am passionate about the fact that business exists for no other reason than to help people accomplish things. Helping others is what business is for and to do that requires connection to find out what people really need.

Here’s a plea. Can we please carry over this practice of connecting into whatever normal will look like? As a customer, I would relish it. To know that businesses actually cared about me, their customer, and my real needs would be a welcome change from the typical pre-pandemic modus operandi of sell, sell, sell to customer #138 so we can profit, profit, profit.

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