Communication - influencing prospectsYou can influence another person’s reactions or choices, but your prospect has the choice of whether or not to respond to you and how to respond to you. Refusing to control yourself and trying to control others is a waste of time.

When you try to control what you cannot, you lose control of yourself. Your sense of power, part of your self-esteem, depends upon your satisfaction with your own sales performance. And if you are trying to control someone else, you begin to think of what they do as part of your own performance. Trying to control someone during a sales presentation is like stepping outside of boundaries or borders between countries. There are also boundaries and borders between people. To communicate effectively, these boundaries should not be crossed.

To achieve the ultimate satisfaction with your sales performance, it depends upon divorcing the value of your action from the results. You can only do what you can do — there are other factors outside yourself and your control that influence the outcome, including the behavior of other people. This is part of taking personal responsibility for your actions. You are completely responsible for what you do, think or feel, and for whom you are. But you are not responsible for the outside factors of your prospects.

Often type A’s and/or aggressive salespeople are more likely to try to control the behavior of their prospects. Often when losing a sale they can become frustrated, angry and hostile from trying to control the behavior of others or trying to control other things that are not within their power. Since I fit into this category, I personally have had to learn this the hard way.

Control simply means choice. Self-control is of emotions, thoughts, body and behavior. When you control your emotions rather than eliminate your emotions in selling, you choose more positive and effective responses.

Emotions have a direct and immediate impact upon your communication. You control your emotions through your thoughts and behaviors, which in turn, affects how your message comes across to others.

By controlling your thoughts you are able to choose when to think, what to think about, how to think about it and to not think about something.

Controlling your communication behavior means being able to choose everything you say within the limitations of time, place and conditions.

The salesperson that realizes that they are the only one in control of how they act upon their own choices becomes very powerful. Self-control, power and influence all affect how you communicate. The salesperson that understands this is most influential upon others. The self-controlled salesperson is admired and sought-after as a leader.

Although an influential salesperson can connect with more prospects, they can also intimidate people who are insecure. Continue to discover the difference between control and influence, and you have the keys to mastering the art of communication. As you do, you will improve the range and intensity of your influence and the probability of boosting your sales confidence and exceeding your goals!

Debbie Allen is one of the world’s leading authorities on sales and marketing. She is the author of five books including Confessions of Shameless Self Promoters and Skyrocketing Sales. Debbie has helped thousands of people around the world attract customers like crazy with her innovative, no-cost marketing strategies and secrets to sales success. Her expertise has been featured in Entrepreneur, Selling Power and Sales & Marketing Excellence. Sign up for her FREE 6-week e-Course Business Success Secrets Revealed ($97 value) and take the online business card quiz to rate you marketing online now at