20 October 2020

Impact, not money, is today’s business currency – The Manila Times

Dear Lloyd,
I’m a student who does tutorial as a sideline to help augment my family’s income. Because of the extension of the enhanced community quarantine, it may take longer before we can go back to school. I have been struggling financially since I lost some tutoring work. No one seems to avail of my services at this point. Any advice?
Leah

Leah,
No one seems to do well at this point in time. We are all on the same boat, sailing on the same rough seas. To keep our sanity, we must keep looking for opportunities while in this crisis. It may sound cliché, but it’s how we sail through this difficult situation that will spell the difference.

As you are in a people business — that is, you engage people to make money — it’s really difficult to acquire clients. Even if they need your service, many may also struggle on how to pay for your service. I also think your service may not land on the priority list when people are facing this kind of crisis.

The bad news: no one’s buying today. The good news, however, is that there’s still a way to sell today. And whether your clients buy or not, there is benefit in the act of “selling” in the long run.

Most of us now use our money for basic necessities, and, unfortunately, your business isn’t deemed a necessity at this time. Your business shares a resemblance with mine as a professional speaker. I also need people for my business to survive. The crowd is where my business is. Without a “gathering of people,” I don’t have a business. Can you imagine how it is now for me? Of course, you do.

Last week, I was invited by Green Circle Realty’s president, Gabriel “Billy” Dominguez, to give an online motivational speech during their monthly meeting. It was the first time they did an onscreen meeting and to their surprise, they got a 100-strong attendance — some were on their laptops, some were on their mobile phones. During my speech, I outlined my insights on how we could navigate this crisis and what it meant to salespeople.

First, we’re all coming from the “old normal,” which means everything was normal until we were placed on a lockdown. Mobility has been restricted. The first thing that people are worried about isn’t lifestyle or luxury or work. It is safety and security. Once they feel secure, the next phase makes them realize their mortality — humanity has limitations; it bleeds and it can be killed. They start to feel how to be human again. People start to humble themselves, reflect on their past and appreciate what matters to them. Most must have realized now that there’s not much we need to survive. The last phase is new mentality. We start to adjust and adapt to a new way of thinking. The situation makes us think differently this time. It asks us to challenge the old normal and demand us to imagine the “new normal.”

In my discussion, there was no mention of selling even as I was in a sales event simply because selling would not make any sense today. But now that we understood the phases of transition from the old normal to the new normal, there is where we can introduce a new business currency.

If no one buys today, and you can’t sell, you can make an impact. Impact is the best currency everyone can use as an investment now, which can make the most dividend in the future.

This week, I started offering a free online one-on-one leadership coaching. As of this writing, I have at least 10 people who booked for a schedule. For an hour, I will have a conversation with them to assess their leadership position and make some recommendations on how they can improve it. I’m not going to make money in this deal. However, I can create an impact on them, which may come in handy later.

Your case is no different. Offer a sort of a freebie to your prospect clients. When they see your value — and feel your impact — I bet they will either get your service or refer someone to avail it.

On my end, will they get my professional speaking or consulting service after this lockdown? No one knows. It’s hard to tell. But I can tell from experience there’s a season to plant and a season to harvest. This is definitely a season to plant.

Don’t sell now. No one buys. Instead, make an impact. Many people may not remember you for the products or services you sold them. They may, however, treasure you for the impact you made them feel especially in times when you no one seems to care and you’re there to add value to them.

Lloyd Luna, RSP, is the first registered speaking professional in the Philippines. He is a motivational speaker on leadership and best-selling author of Stepback: The Lost Art of Filipino Leadership. He is the chief executive officer of Stepback, a leadership and culture development company that helps leaders and organizations see the bigger picture in life and at work. Visit his website www.stepback.ph or email him at lloyd@stepback.ph.

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