The Miller Mindset: Episode # 0019
Welcome to “The Miller Mindset”, a weekly podcast where we explore the power of positive thinking and its impact on our lives. Join me, Chris Miller, as we dive into such topics as goal- setting, overcoming obstacles, and developing a growth mindset. If you’re looking to improve your life and reach your full potential, then this podcast is for you. Don’t miss an episode. Be sure to subscribe today! On today’s show, we will be exploring how our mindset can play a huge role in the decision-making process. So let’s get into it.
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Have you ever found yourself struggling to make a decision, feeling stuck in analysis paralysis? We’ve all been there, but did you know that our mindset is the lens through which we view the world? It shapes our thoughts and beliefs, ultimately influencing the decisions we make in our lives.
Our minds are almost never completely made up, after all, and through negotiation, a no can easily become a yes. Think about your kid when you take them to a store. How often did they ask for something, and you said no, but then they asked again a couple of more times and you bought it for them? That is negotiation. It is ingrained in the fabric of our being.
Children certainly aren’t going to school, listening to tapes, or reading books like “The Art of The Deal” by Donald Trump. They’re simply born with the understanding that they can win us over, and they often do. Negotiations can be tricky however, but with the right mindset, you can come out on top in your negotiations just as well as you kids do with you.
First and foremost, it’s important to have an open mindset, ready to listen and to learn from your opponent in the negotiation. This means that you need to believe that you can improve and learn from your opponent’s and your own mistakes and miscalculations along the journey, and make no mistake about it; negotiation is a journey of discovery and action.
In negotiations, being open to feedback and having a willingness to adapt your strategy as needed makes all the difference. It also means not letting setbacks discourage you, but rather seeing them as the opportunities that they really are. Remember this. . . in negotiations, everything is a learning experience. Everything, and all information exchanged along the way is an opportunity to close.
Alec Baldwin did a fantastic performance in the movie “Glenn Gary, Glenn Ross” back in 1992. I don’t know if you’re familiar with it, but that movie had some terrific performances from Jack Lemmon, Ed Harris, Alan Arkin, and Al Pacino as well. In the movie, which is also a great book by the way, Baldwin makes a long rant about closing, right after he starts off with “The Good News is You’re Fired. The Bad News is all of you’ve got one week to try and regain your jobs…”. If you haven’t seen the movie, I would encourage you to check it out.
This moment that Baldwin shares with us is a perfect example of closing. He goes on and on about the ABCs (Always Be Closing) of sales, and I like it because his entire speech is a negotiation and closing tactic. His goal, of course, is to turn things around in that office and get it producing again. His solution, and the purpose of the “sale” he is trying to make with his negotiation is to put fear into their hearts that they will soon be out of work.
The brilliance of it is in the approach that it is inevitable because it has already happened. It is in the past. So what can they do?
Along this journey, they oppose and object. Jack Lemmon actually says “The Leads Are Weak.”, to which Baldwin scoffs at him and tells him he is weak. The negotiation goes on, as he dismantles all objections and excuses, putting them firmly in the grips of hopelessness. But then, reluctantly, and certainly seeming to be against his wishes, he gives them a small glimmer of hope. A single chance. A small opportunity for redemption. He closes the deal, and they get it. They buy the whole enchilada that he’s selling. That was an example of a good negotiation.
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Another fantastic approach in negotiations is with a win-win mindset. This means looking for ways to create value for both parties involved, rather than just focusing on your own interests. When you approach negotiations in this way, you build trust and rapport with the other party, which can lead to more successful outcomes in the long run.
Sticking with the movie theme that I apparently have going here, have you ever seen the movie “The Founder” with Michael Keaton? This is another terrific film, and itn it Keaton plays Ray Kroc who essentially stole the McDonalds business right out from under the original owners. How did he do it though?
He did it through creating a win-win scenario to gain their trust. He told them, let me run the franchises for you, and I’ll devote my own time, and money to putting a McDonalds on every corner. He wins. They win.
Later on, things changed, but he had established the trust, by that point which allowed him the opportunity to, as they say in baseball, “swing for the fences.”
So, how can you ensure that your negotiation skills beat your opponents’? Here are 2 sure-fire ways to do it.
Number 1. Do your research.
Be prepared and know as much as you can about the other party’s interests, needs, and priorities. This will give you a better understanding of where they’re coming from and what they’re looking for. Knowledge is power, and if you know what they want, you can find a way to get what you want by helping them achieve it.
Number 2. Practice active listening.
This means really paying attention to what the other party is saying, and asking questions to clarify their position. When objections come up, recognize them for what they are, opportunities to close the deal. They are telling you what they need. Listen to them in these moments, and find a way to work with it. By doing this, you can find common ground and come up with solutions that work for both parties.
I’ll give you an example of how I used these 2 principals to close a $12MM deal through the art of a win-win closing scenario several years ago. I was in charge of a sales group for a tax tracking firm, and one of the salespeople on my team had been working with one particular bank for more than 2 years and had never closed the deal. I read about this as I was reading through the logs and I asked her about it. She told me they couldn’t get budget approval through their Board of Directors. OK. That’s understandable. But why are they still talking with her 2 year later? I thought there had to be a reason, but she couldn’t answer that so I said, “Get them on the phone.”
So we conferenced with the VP and the head of mortgage loans for the Bank and I interrupted the conversation at one point to ask, “Can I just ask, what the heck are we even still talking for?”
The silence was deafening. But then it ended. The prospect said, “Well I love your product and think it would be perfect for us. I just can’t get the rest of them to see what I see.”
Boom! There it was; the opening I needed to close this deal. It was right there the whole time. She could have closed it up a year ago if she had kept an open mind and listened for the clues. He told me what he needed. He needed the other Board Members to see the benefit, and she hadn’t built the value to demonstrate $12MM worth of benefit to them. She missed it, and that can happen, but I didn’t miss it. I immediately jumped on that opportunity and I asked him what his largest pain point that our product would address for him would be. He told me and then I asked if we could re-write this deal to just service that one set of problem loans, could he get it done? That would give him the proof he needed to get approval for the whole department win the next budget meeting came up.
He loved the idea, saw it as a win for the bank, and told me he could approve that deal on his own because he had signature authority up to the $1MM we were negotiating for. We closed the deal with a new million dollar contract on the books, and a very happy new client. He closed the deal with security for his bank and less stress on his team, plus, he now had the ammunition he would need to secure budget approval for his department in the next meeting. Win-Win. The following fall, he sent us a signed agreement for the full $12MM, right on schedule, and with a big thank you.
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Well, that’s our show for today folks. I hope you enjoyed the show today, and perhaps even got something useful out of it. Remember, negotiations are all about mindset. If you approach them with an open and win-win mindset, and you do your research and you incorporate active listening, you’ll be well on your way to success in your future negotiations.
If you feel you’ve enjoyed the show, please do leave me a comment, and don’t forget to subscribe as well so you don’t miss a thing. You can also see this episode in blog form if you like, and sign up to receive email alerts when new episodes are released at themillermindset.com. Until then, I’m Chris Miller, reminding you to always keep smiling.
On the Next Episode:
Next time, on The Miller Mindset, we’ll be be talking about how to overcome limiting beliefs that set back business growth. Plus I’ll give you 5 steps to keep your head in the game. That’s next Tuesday, August 15th at 2pm EST; so Don’t miss it.
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Episode 16 – Mindset for Impact Growth: https://www.themillerfirms.com/podcasts/the-miller-mindset-know-your-mindsets-impact-on-growth-performance/
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