She sat behind me; I could hear her sniffling even above all the bustling ballroom chatter.
I turned around and saw a woman in her mid-thirties with tears streaming down her face. She looked up at me with bloodshot eyes and flushed cheeks as she said; “I feel so terrible, I don’t have that kind of money, I wish I did—but I don’t because…” (I’ll keep the details private)
This is a common occurrence in the work I do as a Transformational Business Strategist, people who I’ve never met before feel comfortable telling me deep, emotional, and spiritual things that they share with very few people. It’s almost like I have a flashing light above my head that says, “Talk to me, I’m safe, and I won’t judge you.” Years ago I used to feel odd about how often this happened to me. But as I’ve done more work around embracing my intuition, I realize this is an energetic vibe I give off, and one that people are clearly attracted to.
I’ll call the woman I met that day Michelle. She was upset because someone had just made an offer of his or her products, goods, and services from the stage at the large event that we were both attending. And what Michelle described to me as we continued talking is what I refer to in my business as “the dirty offer hook,” or “the D.O. hook” for short.
“Once they get their hooks into you, you’re a dead pigeon.” –Bud Abbott
“The D.O hook” energetically feels like you have just been served a powerful boxing move in your mid-section. Where you literally feel like someone has just punched all the air out-of-your-body and you’re left feeling an intense level of shame for not doing what they have just told you to do. And to top it off, “the D.O. hook” is sticky too, meaning their words, actions, and motivations stay with you for some time, and you’re left questioning who you are, what you want, and why you do what you do.
“The D.O. hook” was why Michelle was crying.
It wasn’t because she didn’t have the money to invest in the speakers program, it was because the speaker had just hit her with what I call “ the dirty offer hook” and Michelle could feel it.
Do I believe that was the speaker’s intent…absolutely not!
What I do know is this: I have spoken from stages since I was nine years old. The more speeches I’ve given, the more I learn about others and myself. And I’ve even taken multiple programs over the years on how to become a better speaker, and taught them too. And trust me, I’ve made a lot of mistakes and I unknowingly and unintentionally hit people with “the D.O. hook” myself. I like the saying, “When you know better, you do better.” What I’ve discovered, through my own experiences and insights is how to make an empowering offer from the stage.
Three Tips to Make An Empowering Offer
Tip #1–Know Yourself First, then Your Ideal Client
As a conscious women entrepreneur you need to understand first who you are, and then who your Ideal Client is, as well as how you serve them, and make offer to them in words and actions that they understand. That means you need to know your client intimately, this process takes time, energy, and research on your part. Many of my business strategy clients are also speakers; it’s a way of spreading their message to wider audiences. I believe we are each our own client attraction magnets; people don’t work with us as entrepreneurs and small business owners because just of what we offer, they work with us primarily because they resonate with who we are as people first.You are Your Ideal Client Magnet.
Tip #2–Your Offer is All About Sharing Your Value with Love
As someone who has worked in the retail world for twenty-years, I understand selling and offering goods, services, and products very well. Making an offer from the stage is selling you, not doubt about it, but not in an icky Used Car Salesperson kind of way. Rather, it’s about sharing the value with integrity that you can potentially bring into a client’s life and business with love, generosity, and kindness. There are no scare tactics or doses of shame when you offer with love. When you shift your mindset to sharing your value with love, the entire offer process changes!
Tip #3–Empower People to Make a Choice
Choice is all about allowing people to stand in their power and to say yes and no with authority, and then it is our responsibility to honor their choices. Too many times people feel shame because they are not seen, heard, or acknowledged for who they are, and/or belittled publicly because of who they are or are not as business owners. As a speaker, give people an option to choose without making them feel wrong or invalid for not raising their hand, cheering, or even speaking their truth. I encourage you to find ways to make people feel empowered no matter what they choose.
Remember this: We all want to be included, especially in groups. One of our core motivations is to be liked and respected as human beings, if we change who we are to do that, many times we end up not liking or respecting ourselves. The other end of the spectrum can include liking and respecting ourselves, but not feeling empowered for being who we are, especially in groups. We’ve all most likely experienced peer pressure, even as adults. As in many things in life, I believe this is not an “either/or” situation, rather it’s an “and.”
When we can feel empowered for our choices and still be liked and respected for who we are, we physically feel good.
That’s what Michelle desired—to know she was seen, heard, and acknowledged for who she was, even though she chose to not sign up for the speakers program now. If she had known that, she might not have cried, she may have walked away feeling empowered by her choice to say no instead.
How can you put down the gloves and help others feel empowered by your offer? Please share your comments below.
This blog post is part of the Word Carnival. Each month, expert business owners get together to share their strategies, wisdom, and insight on unique topics. The New Year is bright with all sorts of new ideas, but in certain circles there’s still plenty of shady tricks and underhanded practices that we think should be called out. This month’s word carnival: Dirty Deeds and Due Diligence – what to watch out for in 2015!
Are you a Conscious Women Entrepreneur–Coach, Consultant, or Healer, who has been in business 2+ years and is ready to take your business to the next level of profitability and success? Let’s talk, I can help!
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