From working as a paper boy, then a milkman, to becoming CEO of Adirondack Beverages Inc. and an adjunct assistant professor in organizational behavior at Binghamton University in New York, Angelo Mastrangelo has used likability throughout every adventure in his life to influence others and guide companies.
Angelo realized early on that there was a two-step process to selling to someone: you first sell yourself, and then you sell your product. Presentation is 90% delivery, and 10% content? What about yourself do you exactly sell?
In sales, Angelo recommends that first of all, you have to know what you’re talking about. You could give the best presentation, but it could all be for naught if your customer reflects negatively on your content afterwards. Second, are you trustworthy and dependable? If you don’t care to share with them, they can’t trust that you have their best interests at heart. Finally, what are your morals? Do you treat people the same, whether they’re the CEO or the janitor?
Angelo demonstrates that “your altitude is determined by your attitude,” when he goes the extra mile for a former boss just by quietly moving cases of soda. This gained the respect and the trust of the store manager. When Angelo had a pricing suggestion for the store manager, it was acted upon (it also led to the store clearing inventory on that item a week later!).
When you sell to a customer, it’s not a we-world, it’s more of a you-world. It has been said that the number one rule in selling and presentation is to know your customer. Angelo found out that selling to different customers meant he could be direct with one, while taking time to establish rapport with another customer.
Getting to know your customer can be effective in gaining their trust, but Angelo noticed some salesmen who would rip off canned material—and still close the deal! Likability is your knockout punch, but your backbone will be your preparedness.
Angelo has also used likability in his role as a leader, and recognizes that the one thing all great leaders do is that they establish a common purpose. To this day, we still remember that Martin Luther King had a dream. And we believe in these great leaders because they radiate credibility.
What is credibility? Credibility is expertise + trust. Your expertise is how you present yourself, but the trust is in how you live your message and lead by example. Credibility is also situational: if you wanted to build something, would you consult a man dressed in a suit and tie, or would you consult someone who looks like they have been working with wood for his entire life? If someone’s accomplished something, this is also another sign of credibility (think Steve Jobs and Elon Musk).
Thank you Angelo Mastrangelo for coming onto the show! Find out more about him at his blog, Leadership 101. Angelo Mastrangelo is the owner and CEO of Adirondack Beverages, as well as an adjunct assistant professor in Organizational Behavior at Binghamton University in New York. He is also the author of Entrepreneurial Leadership: A Practical Guide for Generating New Business, which will be hitting the shelves on September 30, 2015. Check out the book on Amazon here.
Stay tuned, and stay awesome!
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