The Abundant Accountant Podcast

AA 44 | Effective Business Communication

 

Business is about relationships, and effective business communication should reflect that fact. Success in business starts with your ability to effectively communicate with associates, employees, and especially your clients. How do you set up communication to win? Here are some of the implied relationship words that you can use to make the most out of your conversations with your clients. Sitting down with Michelle Weinstein for this is Denise Mandeau, the Cofounder and Workplace Dynamics Specialist at P3D Consulting LLC. A business growth strategist, business owner, financial planner, and award-winning sales professional with over 35 years of experience, Denise takes us back to the basics of effective business communication. Listen and get a fresh look at the overlooked principles that will make you win in any business conversation.

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Setting Up Communication To Win With Implied Relationship Words With Denise Mandeau

This episode is brought to you by Abby Connect. Are you a firm owner that loves those loyal clients who help you drive the growth of your top-line revenue? Steady growth comes with great customer experiences that start from that very first phone call. By the way, do you use voicemail? If you do, 85% of callers who reach your voicemail will hang up or gets frustrated. First impressions set the tone for the service that you want to provide. Abby Connect is here to improve your customer service while saving you time and money. You get to offload those incoming phone calls that distract you to a friendly, knowledgeable receptionist who you can hear smiling through the phone. If you want to get a free trial and try it out, we have a special offer for you over at AbbyConnect.com and make sure to mention The Abundant Accountant Podcast when you set up your trial. Grow your firm with your own professional, reliable, personable receptionist team from Abby Connect.

This is where accountants come to learn all the ways that you can grow your firms. If you are ever in doubt, we, Denise and I, are here to help you out. If you’re ready to learn and ready to grow your firm, then you are in the right place to sharpen those sales skills and to ultimately increase your revenue. You can be more confident, positioning yourself as the expert, get consistent high-quality referrals and prospects that say yes to paying you what you’re worth no matter how much you charge and not what people think that they can afford. Before we get into the episode, I would like to give a warm welcome to our very special guest, my partner in crime, Denise Mandeau. She is a Business Growth Strategist who has proven success as a Business Owner, Financial Planner, and as an award-winning sales professional with over 35 years of experience.

She’s learned what it takes to produce results. It’s been working with professionals and sales teams over the last few years and helping to generate millions of dollars in new business. She has personally closed over $1.8 million in sales in new business. She is passionate about teaching others to learn how to sell without being salesy or pushy, which I love because I am the same exact way. For those of you who have been in business a couple of years and maybe you’re frustrated because you continue to wing your sales process and you’re not attracting those higher-value quality clients, then I am excited to share with you what I’m offering. It’s a free coaching session with Denise or myself.

This system that we’re able to share with you and dig deep in is all about how to get ideal clients coming to you and finally getting paid what you’re worth so you can build a dream practice and still have the time, freedom, and money to enjoy with your family and kids. If you’re a little frustrated and stressed trying to get all the right referrals and what steps to do next, then let’s explore that and get to the truth of what’s going on. If you are an accountant and you’ve been in business for at least two years, you can book your free coaching session with us over at TheAbundantCall.com. Our episode is all about setting up communication to win because we can’t forget the basics. We’re going to explore different implied relationship words in order for you to connect the dots better with your clients and for you to ultimately increase your revenue. Now, let’s dive into the episode.

Welcome to setting up your communication to win. That’s always the best part of all this, Denise, is how do we communicate to our clients where they feel like they’re winning and we feel like we’re winning at the same time. When I say we, I put my accountant hat on and I say, “Yes,” every time I’m a CPA for a second. That’s what we’re talking about. This is good to use in any of your emails. Communicating in meetings is a great place to use this. Some of it might be a refresher and some of it might have some new words that you haven’t ever seen before. One of the things we want to make sure about is that you don’t forget about the basics. I’ve talked about it before, but Chris Voss does a lot of this training in his book, Never Split the Difference.

Don't forget about the basics when you're communicating with someone. Click To Tweet

I was listening to something and he literally shared that the way you come to a meeting, the way you show up, the way that if someone is angry or upset, which right now, a lot of people are angry and upset. I know some have clients that get a lot of mail from the IRS and they’re angry and upset. When you do that and you have these types of clients, what Chris was saying, and it’s so true and I’ll share a personal story and effects. Denise and I have lots of stories for you. Your tonality in your voice can shift the whole conversation. It’s one of the most important things to remember.

Some of these beginning things might be like, “Michelle, thanks for the reminder. Sometimes we need to hear it over and over again so we don’t forget.” This is ultimately what helps you create more abundance in your firm, with your clients and your stress levels. Their stress levels decrease when there are not so many people arguing. Denise, what do you think is the number one way to going back to the basics to set up our communication to win with our client when you’re offering new services? Some of you might be offering profit first, yearly services, or tax planning services. It could be for current clients and for prospects. Also, for the startup business owner that has no clue what’s going on and is frantic that they might lose their business.

I think we were talking about this. The number one thing that we all need to be mindful of is people want to be heard. They want to be acknowledged. They want to know that you understand what they’re dealing with and feeling right now.

For everyone here reading, I always use the 80-20 rule. Maybe even go 90-10 right now, if you’re listening 90% of the time, you’re only talking 10%. In addition to that, a little bonus tip for you. If you want to talk and you have something to say, we can ask permission. You could ask a client, “I’ve had some thoughts around this. Would it be okay if I share what I’ve been thinking?” Asking permission to talk is going to help you win in that scenario. Now, they’ve allowed you to talk, you go more into the 80-20 or 70-30, they’ll remember that you gave them the permission in order to do so. Think about asking permission right now and also taking responsibility. Taking responsibility, I’m going to share with you like this.

I don’t know who I was talking to, but we’ll call him James. James’ voice was getting louder and seemed frustrated. I know it had nothing to do with me, but a lot of the stuff you all might think that sometimes you’re a therapist at the time. How many of you think sometimes that you’re a therapist and that your clients are talking to you and you’re like, “I swear, these people should go to therapy. I’m their tax expert, their tax advisor. I’m going to get them out of problems with the IRS. I’m going to help save them a bunch of money. Why are they bringing this issue to me?”

You can also take responsibility, even if it’s not correct but it might be. Maybe you said something and didn’t even realize you hurt their feelings or set them off or pressed their button. Denise, I did this when I said, “I want to say I’m sorry if I made you upset.” Taking responsibility even if you didn’t do it. What it does is helps put someone at ease. In order to have communication to win, we have to make sure that other people can hear us. If you’re sitting down with a prospect, Denise, you’re there, you’re with your new prospect and they’re all fired up, they can’t hear you. They might pretend they can hear you. This has happened a lot. Sometimes it’s like, “I’m sorry. Maybe I upset you,” and take responsibility for it.

AA 44 | Effective Business Communication

Effective Business Communication: “Explore” is an implied relationship word that shows that you’re interviewing them as much as they are interviewing you.

 

That goes back to what we talked about the basics before acknowledging and mirroring back. I’m clearing. What I’m hearing you say is that you’re frustrated or you’re angry and you’re not feeling about X, Y, and Z. It’s letting them know that you’re listening and caring, concern, and compassion. Coming from that place and that place of being is a powerful part of rapport.

One of the things that we’ve talked about probably a long time ago, but I want to bring this to the surface to refresh your memories for setting up communication to win with your clients are using implied relationship words. You might be thinking, “What does that mean?” Some examples of this are that these are words that you imply you already have the relationship and the trust built with someone. We’re past the building rapport phase and stuff. We’re either emailing back and forth or in a meeting with a client and you’re about to share with them how you can help fix or solve one of their problems, but you’re in this together and that together you will win.

Some of these words here will help you do that. Denise and I will break down some of these words, but here’s an example of what I’m talking about. As you’re reading, think about what are some of the implied words that are being used. As we explore solutions together for your business, I invite you to share what your biggest challenges have been. As we discover those, I ask that you promise to share whatever questions that you may come up with so it can help me recognize that I’m here to help you. Denise, the first word that you heard, even though we put this together, is what?

It’s exploring.

We and explore. Explore is a great word to use when communicating with the client. It doesn’t say that I’m going to guarantee I’m going to work with you because I have heard a handful of you who I work within the Sales Master Momentum or even random emails I get from people that I turned away a client. If you use the word ‘explore’ when you’re communicating to your client, that goes to show that you’re interviewing them as much as they are interviewing you. Denise, is there anything else to explore before we go to the next word? It’s a great word.

People want to be heard and acknowledged. Click To Tweet

Even as we explore, it’s implying like we’re in this together. We’re exploring together. People like to explore.

It’s a collaboration. For those of you who hate the word ‘sales,’ as you say, “If we explore,” it’s a collaboration and the reason it’s implied is that it’s also, “It might not be a good fit.” It implies that meaning at the same time. Solutions together. Together is a great word. That’s more of an obvious one that you probably use more often. Instead of, “We can see if we could work together,” or at the beginning of a conversation you might say, “Now, we’ll go over what I found. If I think we’re a good fit to work together in your business,” you could say, “We could explore what that might look like.”

Think about how you can use that word in your emails, in your thank you letters, in your follow-ups. It’s a great way to use the word ‘explore,’ by the way, in a follow up with a client who’s disappeared on you or maybe they disappeared or they weren’t a good fit right now, but they were six months ago. You could send an email, “Would it be a bad idea if we explore what working together would look like right now?” That’d be another way you could use it. Denise, go for it. The next one. We love this word. Invite. We use this all the time. Invite is a powerful and implied relationship word.

You don’t invite people that you don’t like. You only invite people that you care about and that are important to you. You invite them to do things with you. People want to be invited. “I invite you to work with me.”

People want to be invited. In order to be invited, think about if you’re having a birthday party. It’s your 50th birthday party. You want to invite people. You’re only going to invite your family and your close friends who you like and who are in your trusted circle. The same goes for your clients. A perfect example of this would be if you realize that a client doesn’t fit your criteria to work with them, or they went off the rail and they got angry for some reason. You don’t need to invite them in. When you use this word a lot in emails or on the phone, it’s wonderful because it also allows the other person to know, “Michelle and Denise don’t invite everyone into their program or to help,” because we can’t afford a bad apple. If we can’t afford a bad apple, we can’t invite the bananas. We can’t invite the rotten apple. We definitely can’t invite the apple with a worm in it.

AA 44 | Effective Business Communication

Effective Business Communication: “Invite” implies that you are bringing the other person to your circle of trust.

 

That is how we use the word ‘invite.’ I invite you to start using it, especially with your new clients. That’s that one. I invite you to share. Also, invite allows them instead of the other way you would say this. If you were to change the structure of the sentence, “I invite you to share what your biggest challenges have been in your business.” It’s a little bit more inviting than typically how we ask it. I’m pretty much a 50/50. What are the biggest challenges in your business? People don’t want to be told. Can you elaborate on that?

I don’t want to be told what to do. I don’t want to tell you everything, but sharing sounds like, “We’re sharing information.” It’s more like, “That’s what friends do. That’s what people do that are intimate.”

It’s more conversational. I realized an area that I could improve upon right now and become more consistent in that. I invite you to share. People love to share. It’s not like a kid when they don’t want to share their applesauce with their sister. People love to talk. Going back to the beginning, remember the 90-10. Listening 90% of the time, you only talk 10%. During the 90%, that’s when your prospects, your current clients, your staff, and the people that work for you want to share. This is great too. If you have a staff or people helping you, you could share at your team meeting, “I invite you to share where you feel communication could be improved,” or “I invite you to share what you feel our firm could do better.”

You’re inviting and having them share, which also builds collaboration, trust and togetherness. A few other ones. We have share, we talked about explore. Promise is a good one. If you promise to share with them how it could look like working together. They then know that you’re going to come through at the end, but you have to follow through on your word. Promise is a very solid word. Denise, feel free to give more examples on how we can work on it.

I promise during our time that we spend together that you’re going to get massive value.

Communicating with clients is 90% listening and 10% talking. Click To Tweet

I promise that by that time you leave, you’ll have a clear idea of what to do next in your business. That’s a good one. I promise by the end of our chat or meeting that you’ll know the next best steps to take in your business. I promise that I will show you your minimum savings of how much money you could keep in your pocket than giving to the government. That’s if you’re doing a tax plan. A promise is pretty strong, but it’s a soft strong. Is that a word, Denise?

I don’t know. That might be Michelle-ism.

I tend to have that, especially now. It’s like Groundhog Day every day for me. I keep coming up with more Michelle-isms. I could probably create a Michelle dictionary right now. We have the word ‘discover.’ It’s a great word. If you think promise is a little too harsh or very solid, you could share, “At the end of a meeting, I’ll definitely share what I’ve discovered on your behalf or what I’ve discovered are the next best steps for your business.” You could use discover and promise and intertwine the two. We talked invite. Another great word is help. People do need help. I love when I can share that I can help somebody. Using the word ‘help’ in this, you could even add it here, “As we explore solutions together for how I can help and support your business, I invite you to share what your biggest challenges have been.” That’s how you can interject help if you feel it’s appropriate. Denise, do you have anything on this? Do you have a story on when you used this?

I think also what we’re pointing out to you is that by planting these words in the beginning, it’s something that you’re setting the stage for already that when you do get through the fifteen steps that you’re seeding with them agreeing with you and saying yes and feeling comfortable saying yes as you go along. Does that make sense?

Yes. It’s implied togetherness.

You’re implying, “I’m working with you. We’re working together.” Why wouldn’t they want to continue working with you?

AA 44 | Effective Business Communication

Effective Business Communication: “Promise” tells them that they are going to like working with you.

 

Of course, they would want to work with you. If you want to use the word ‘discover’ in a sentence, it would go like this, “As we discover those, I ask that you promise to share whatever questions may come up to help you recognize I’m here to help.” Another way to word that is, “Whatever questions may come up to help me recognize how I could serve you better.” You could do it that way too. These are a few ways to use these words. I invite you to share these in your future communication via email, phone, and text messages to your clients. You could practice it with your family. You could practice it with your significant other, “I’d love to explore having dinner together tonight. I invite you to share with me if you object or not.”

You can play along with these and try them at home. Those were some of our ways to make sure to set up your communication to win. To be honest, the communication is the foundation to any increased revenue, to any sale, to any abundance in the firm and being able to serve your clients at a higher level. They’re fun words. You might’ve heard them before. You might not have. It’s been a while if you did. It’s always good to bring it to a refresher, especially in this time that we’re in. It’s even more. Denise, I know you said you were going to share some stories. What was that?

We were talking some time that I got on a call. How many of you here have had a meeting where all of a sudden the conversation got away from you and the person was going on and on and talking? You’re thinking in your head, “I don’t know where this is going.”

It happens to everybody and you’re like, “How do I reel them in?” It’s like you’re on a fishing line and the fishing line got so far out in the lake and you’re trying to reel it back in and it’s so difficult.

Even with what we taught you, you can say, “Can I offer you some feedback?”

Communication is the foundation to any increased revenue, sale, and abundance in your firm. Click To Tweet

You could even say, “Do I have your permission?”

“Do I have your permission to interrupt you if I feel we’re going off track here? I know the information I need to discover together how we can support and help you.” I had a woman like that. She was going on and on. She’s a lovely lady. I was like, “I don’t know where this is going.” I’m thinking, “There’s a story here.” You’re waiting, “Where are we going?” I listened and reflected. I pulled out the key points that I heard her say and I reflected back. All of a sudden she stopped and she’s like, “How can I work with you? What forms of payment do you accept?”

It does happen. Some of you might be thinking, “What’s the point? Can you get to the point? I have no idea what you’re saying.” If that’s the thought that comes in your head, then ask permission to interrupt. “I’m sorry, but is it okay if I give you my thoughts and interrupt? I would love to get back on track so we can explore and discover together how I can help you. I invite you to share your feedback and questions with me so we can move forward in this conversation because I think we’re a little off track,” or something like that. I used 4 or 5 of those words in one sentence. If you have any questions, feel free to send an email. You all know the email, Hello@ThePitchQueen.com and use these. Let’s see how we can discover, promise, explore, share our stories and invite more people in together so we can all help each other. I used them all in that sentence. Denise, it’s your turn. Try to use all the words in one sentence.

I love that we get to explore solutions together for your business and invite each other to share our biggest challenges that we all have so that we can help each other to grow. We promise you to deliver and share massive value.

AA 44 | Effective Business Communication

Effective Business Communication: “Discover” implies togetherness.

 

It’s hard to use all the same words. Thank you so much, Denise. It’s always fun having you.

Thank you all so much for joining Denise and I on our topic of setting up communication to win and not derailing from the basics. Smiling is 70% to 80%. Putting yourself in your client’s shoes and listening more is literally everything that I talk about all the time. I know it sounds so easy, but it is actually hard. My homework to you is how can you use some of these implied relationship words in your emails to your clients? We did a fun game on how do you use all seven words in one sentence? I invite you to take on that challenge. How can you use the implied relationship words that you learned such as share, explore, promise, discover, invite, help, and together all in one sentence? Share it with me.

You can forward it to my email address at Hello@ThePitchQueen.com. It is always an honor to be here with you. For those of you that have been in business at least two years and you’re frustrated and stressed trying to get the right referrals. You feel like you have no control over who you’re working with and you’re winging it all the time and you don’t have a process that you’re following, we would love to talk to you so you can build the dream practice. Work less and still have the time freedom and the money to enjoy it with your family and your kids. It’s not your fault because no one’s training on this, but we can explore together. I can use all my words for you right now.

I’ll give you an example. If you’ve been in business for two years, let’s explore and I will share. I promise that it will be a well worth hour together discovering how I could possibly help you and what the possibilities of us working together are. If so, I will invite you into our next eight weeks sales mastery training that Denise and I have. If that’s you, head on over to TheAbundantCall.com if you would like to explore and discover together what opportunities there are. I promise it will be a great investment of your time and I will share and invite anyone who I believe I can support and help over at the website. Thank you all so much for joining us here on another episode. It’s always so fun to be here with you.

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About Denise Mandeau

AA 44 | Effective Business CommunicationDenise Mandeau, Business Growth Strategist and has proven success as a Business Owner, Financial Planner and award-winning Sales professional for over 35 years. She has learned what it takes to produce results and has been working with professionals and sales teams over the last few years helping them to generate millions of dollars in new business.

She has personally closed over $1.8 million in new business in the last 12 months. Denise is passionate about teaching others to learn how to sell without being salesy!

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