It is extremely valuable to understand your behavioral style and how it relates to your business networking. Most importantly, learning how to identify behavioral styles in others, and then learning how to adapt your own approach to those different styles, can make a significant difference in your referability.
I wrote about this in my book, “Room Full of Referrals,” with co-authors Dr. Tony Alessandra and Dawn Lyons. All customers and all networkers prefer communication in a manner that is most familiar to them. Knowing their personal style can help you customize an effective sales or networking approach for each unique individual.
Dr. Tony Alessandra calls this The Platinum Rule – the idea of treating people the way they want to be treated.
The Four Common Behavioral Styles
- Go-Getter: Fast-paced, task-oriented, & doesn’t like to be wrong about anything.
Driven, Bold, Decisive, Strong Desire to Lead
- Promoter: Fast-paced, people-oriented, gregarious, likes to be in the spotlight.
Energetic, Outgoing, Fun-Loving, Positive, Talkative
- Nurturer: Slower-paced, people-oriented, dislikes confrontation, & helps others.
Patient, Helpful, Understanding, Reserved
- Examiner: Slower-paced, task-oriented, methodical, likes facts, & dislikes hype.
Effective, Efficient, Thorough, Research-Oriented
A key point to remember is that we are all a blend of the four styles with different intensity levels of each.
Oftentimes your behavioral style can be observed at a fairly young age. When I was 11 years old, I missed the bus going to school one day. The school was about two miles away and I had plenty of time, so I started walking.
Along the way I passed a fuel station with a small store attached to it. My eye caught some awesome looking lollipops – big, red, strawberry-flavored suckers. They only cost a nickel (five pennies) so I bought four or five of them and continued on to school. When I got there, a friend saw what I had and asked me if he could buy one. I said sure he could – for a dime (ten pennies). He bought it right away! That day I sold all the lollipops except for the one that I kept for myself . . . and I saw a great business opportunity.
The next day I decided to walk to school again, and this time I bought a dozen lollipops at the store. I sold them all before school was done for the day. I did this the next day, and the next… for almost a month. I was very happy with my margin and the money that I saw growing from my lollipop enterprise.
That was my first experience in business, and it was obvious from that early time in my life that I was a “Go-Getter” behavioral style.
The end of the story had another lesson in store. After a month of great sales, the Principal called me into his office and told me I couldn’t sell candy to students on campus. I asked him why and he said it was a school policy. Then I asked him why it was OK to sell candy bars for the school fundraiser on campus but not sell other candy for any other reason. He basically told me that was the policy and I could follow it or be suspended. Thus, the last lesson I learned was about government regulation. The next business I started was NOT on campus.
Do you recall your first business experience? How has your own behavioral style helped or hurt your networking and referral marketing efforts? I’d love to hear your story.