In today’s episode of the Salesman Podcast, we speak with Michael Reddington. He is a certified forensic interviewer and he talks about how to understand a buyer better, using techniques of enhanced questioning. Will and Michael discuss the best non-invasive approach in questioning, why salesmen are like doctors in terms of “diagnosing” a customer, what confirmation bias is, and many more.
“Asking questions is a wonderful way to begin to delve into what people are thinking and feeling.” – Michael Reddington
Questioning As A Double-Edged Sword
Customers often perceived questions as either an attack or invitation. It can either make the customer talk more or be on guard. Michael further reminds us to find great questions to understand customers better since poor questions lead to more damage.
“If we want people to share information, we have to help them choose to feel comfortable doing so. It’s a combination of what we like to say ‘illustrate before you investigate’ that really helps us accomplish that.” – Michael Reddington
Defining the Confirmation Bias
Essentially, our brains are wired to look for information that confirms our beliefs and to discard information that contradicts what we already know. Whether we realise it or not, Michael shares we are constantly looking for indications that validate the expectations we had prior to the conversation. Although it can save us time, it can be dangerous in a lot of ways. This is confirmation bias.
“We would need to establish that norm before making assumptions. When it comes to preparing for the conversation, oftentimes, especially in a B2B sales world, people fall in love and rightfully so with what they sell. So when they go into these conversations, they’re really confident that they are the best sales rep.” – Michael Reddington
Michael explains that it is important to plan ahead before engaging in any conversation. He encourages us to establish a baseline behavior and combat being overconfident.
“As I begin to strategize, the first question I ask myself is ‘why shouldn’t they buy what I’m selling?’ This forces me to have an uncomfortable conversation and think from their perspective all the reasons why they shouldn’t buy, which then helps me strategically prepare and also limits confirmation bias.” – Michael Reddington
Michael Reddington, CFI is an expert at moving people from resistance to commitment. As a Certified Forensic Interviewer, he achieved the highest professional designation available in the field of interview and interrogation.