NLP in Sales

What is everybody's thoughts, if you have any, on NLP in sales? - by Snowboy
I’m a big fan as I’ve seen the way that NLP can change people and help people understand others.

I first came across it when I lived in South Africa (1993 – 1997) and was invited to attend a one day workshop by the big guns in my company. It was billed as some soft skill event or other. I didn’t want to go, but had to! It was fantastic. I asked what the basis of this stuff was and Mike (the tutor) said it was NLP – I was hooked and immediately signed up for a practitioners course – 16 days. I learned how to apply the techniques in sales situations and specialized in communication. To the uninitiated, or those wishing to discredit, would say you use NLP to manipulate people, but rarely can you manipulate, rather influence with integrity. The safeguard to manipulation is that ‘behaviour follows intention’ and that if you are trying to manipulate, it will come out in your behaviour and the other person will more than likely pick up the signals and feel something is wrong.

After my course I sent all my sales people on a practitioners course and it made a huge difference to their performance. NLP is one of the reasons why I got in to training and helping develop people.

All of our training workshops follow NLP principles of communication. We also teach NLP principles of communication. For example, we prove in a workshop, that we can increase a person’s ability to hear just by running a simple exercise. Why is this important to sales? Well, behaviour follows intention – people will give away their intention in their behaviour, such as the language they use – what they say and how they say it. You need to be on full alert to hear the small changes in verbal communication. The mind and body are linked. Say something that has a meaning to you and your verbal pattern changes – bingo. Now, you don’t make an assumption about what the change means, you just explore it with the other person. For example, in a sales situation where you are exploring the other person’s needs they will invariably not tell you everything – listen to the changes in voice patterns around the topics, ask the question around a subject that they mentioned only briefly, but it had significance to them because of the change in voice pattern, and you will find you open up a whole new and important discussion. This is only a very small aspect of how we use NLP in training.

When I coach and come across a sales rep who for whatever reason is not performing I will often recommend they attend an NLP course. The reason for non performance is often something to do with personal issues. After the NLP course they come back a changed person and start hitting their numbers again. Comments from the boss are always along the lines… “wow, what have you done to him!”

I even sent my eldest daughter (she was 20) on an NLP course. Without obviously going in to the detail…she had for years been at war with one of her siblings. She had terrible trouble at college, flunked her exams and suffered a nervous breakdown. She spent 6 months in her room never going out, only reading and no interest in life. NLP changed all that. She is good friends with her sibling, is back at college and doing extremely well, has a great social life and is enjoying her life. She will attest that it is NLP that made her look at things differently, provided her with the skills to build relationships where there was once only extreme trouble, and allowed her to see herself differently. The result, one very happy daughter.

I have many, many other examples where NLP has had major positive impact. So, does it help… yea… I think it does! - by Firstborder
I don't know a lot about NLP, but from what I understand it is along the same lines as psycho-cybernetics... a kind of cognitive behaviour approach to changing beliefs, perceptions and habits.

I definitely believe that psycho-cybernetics works, as I have been able to change many things over last 10 years by using these methods - even without realising it!

NLP sounds interesting though - I'd like to find out more. - by Mr Lee
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