Humor, when used appropriately, can help break the ice and build rapport. Humor not only builds rapport, but it also deescalates stress. Humor is a much needed salve to burning fear. Clever humor will evoke thoughtful responses and encourage dialogue. Having someone laugh at a joke you shared increases your confidence and sense of self-worth. Humor invokes positive responses and feelings.
Let’s think about how this can be applied in business. While being a salesperson has always been tough, right now, it is even harder. Many people are in some sort of quarantine and those that aren’t are wearing masks. We wear masks that are uncomfortable. I mean, really, who could have predicted, that we would actually be required to wear a mask instead of hiding behind an invisible one. So how do we spark humor and engage with our customers when physical contact and proximity has become so problematic? We start with finding humor within ourselves and humor in our surroundings.
I challenge you to treat each room of your house as a different place to conduct a cold call. Think of your hardest sells and designate them to certain rooms. And, for goodness sake, do not forget the bathroom. That room not only provides a mirror, but it also gives you the reassurance that no matter what, even the strangest things can break record sales. Whether one-ply or two-ply, for a cool minute that rolling river of paper was white gold. This is sales. Sales are tumultuous. Sales is exciting. Sales is dramatic. Sales is humorous.
A light-hearted and clever comment can peel away misgivings. They soften the body and slow the negativity. Now, more than ever, humor needs to be our first line of offense in building relationships with customers. Take this time and reinvent yourself, use the tools that you have and let them be the architects of your future.