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Generosity

3 Reasons Why It's Essential to Your Business

This is week twenty-four, the last week of a series where I'll be sharing a chapter from my book (Stop Selling Start Helping) each week. If you missed the previous weeks, click here to view all chapters. To learn more about Stop Selling Start Helping, click here.

CH 24 Generosity: 3 Reasons Why It's Essential to Your Business

Generosity.

What do you think of when you read/hear this word?

I’m guessing there’s not a bad thought that even comes close to entering your mind.

Here are three reasons why generosity is essential to your success...

1. To my first point, generosity is, by default, a positive concept.

Those who are generous are generally perceived as “better” people. The opposite is also true. When you’re selfish, it shows. Nobody likes to do business with someone who thinks of no one but himself.

2. When you are generous with your time, talents and financial resources, the world benefits.

Whether it’s literally “the world” through financial donations to organizations that help around the globe or “your world” because you spend time leading a local Boy Scout troop, your impact on the world around you is positive. In your workplace, being generous works to the benefit of everyone – the project gets done faster; the ideas are better with more input; the intern learns something new; the customer feels good about working with your business. Everyone wins.

3. What goes around, comes around.

When you’re generous, others are much more likely to be generous with you. It’s also a fact that being generous leads others to do the same. It’s terrible that I can’t remember the bank’s name, but there was a great series of TV commercials from a bank that showed one person doing something nice for another. A seemingly unrelated person noticed that act of generosity or kindness and in turn helped someone else out. This chain of events goes on and on through seven or eight circumstances. When we see someone being generous, we’re more likely to be generous ourselves and vice versa.

Find some area to be generous today.

Conclusion

Something happened in a meeting today that will help wrap up this whole book. It’s funny how timing works just right, isn’t it?

“People want to see what we do first; and then, if they like what they see, they’ll want to learn more about us.”

This statement came from a prospect in a meeting where we were talking about how (or even if) the company’s website should focus more on the pictures and what they do instead of helping to address the questions, concerns and “pains” of their prospective customers.

She said, “I’ve looked at probably 100 websites of our competitors and others in our industry, and they all have pretty pictures and very few words on the home page.”

To add to the irony of the timing of today being the day I write this conclusion AND have this conversation with this prospect, this morning I happened to put out a video titled, “Are You a Purple Cow?” It was basically a recommendation to read Seth Godin’s book, Purple Cow.

The gist of the story goes like this: Nothing is special about a brown cow. You see them all the time. Especially when you’re on a long driving trip, you see hundreds, if not thousands, of brown cows. And, the more you see, the less you pay attention to them.

However, if you’re driving down the highway, and you notice a purple cow standing out in the pasture, that’s going to grab your attention. That is going to make you take a second look.

At the beginning of this book, I mention the fact that consumers (buyers, in general) have so many options. What that really means is there are tons of brown cows out there. The people, businesses, and organizations that stand out are going to be the ones who win.

Do you want to stand out?

As this person described the hundred or so websites that all offered basically the same thing, I said, “Don’t you think that if you were a potential customer, and you had clicked through three, five or ten of these other websites, and then landed on one that was different – one that, instead of “selling” you right away with pretty pictures and very little content, it addressed your exact frustration or answered the question you couldn’t get resolved from any other resource out there – don’t you think THAT one would stand out?”

I asked her how she would go about buying a TV. I asked what would be the first thing she’d do? Her answer: “I’d go Google and search for ‘best TV reviews.’” I dug a little more, asking her what she would do next. “I would do some research, find out which TV was the best, which had the highest ratings, the best resolution, that kind of stuff.”

Then, I asked her one more question: “If you did all the research, and there was one website that had given you a ton of great information and educated you on which TV was best and why...wouldn’t you be more likely to buy a TV from that company than the one that just showed a picture of the TV with a price beside it?”

What do you think her answer was? “Yah. I guess I would.”

When it comes down to the core of every one of us, we would rather be helped than “sold.” We would rather be educated than talked at or manipulated. We would rather be entertained than bored with details we don’t care about.

So, here’s my charge to you: Stop selling, and start helping instead. And watch how your business grows!

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