Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Logical and rational thought App for your Selling Brain part 3

We salespeople most of the time like to think of ourselves as rational and logical folk. And we can be – but not without some effort.

Logical thought requires us to behave like a micro processing chip, performing stepwise operations on information .

Lego sculpture by Nathan Sawaya part of
the Art of the Brick Exhibition
 at the Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lana, London UK
There are sales processes that use the analogy of a series of steps as  questions to gather information or build agreements to win over the heart of the buyer. 

However such logical behaviour does not necessarily come naturally to many of us, and requires outside instruction to learn and lengthy training to master.

 Even then we, we may struggle to maintain a purely rational perspective.

Caroline Williams in New Scientist reports that there is a kernel of truth in the popular wisdom that " left brain equals logic”.

Imaging studies have shown that the left prefrontal cortex is needed to make logical trains of thought happen and much of the time no input is needed from the right.

However when there is conflict between what seems logical and beliefs that we already hold, the right side prefrontal cortex kicks in to help us sort out the confusion – Brain Research vol 1428 p24.September 2012

In such circumstances the right hemisphere usually wins

Nathan Sawaya's 'Grasped' sculpture in Lego®
bricks from the Art of the brick exhibition
 in London 
Many studies have shown that where new information conflicts with existing beliefs, our brains ‘fight’ to keep beliefs in tact rather than revises them.

 It is as if our forward motion is held back maybe like Nasthan Sawaya's 'Grasped' sculpture from Art of the Brick Exhibiotn currently on in London.

For sales people this gives further weight and significance to the skills  required when handling buyer objections  such as

 “ We are happy with our current supplier”

We have used  their X product satisfactorily for 5 years ,it worked fine,  I see no reason to change over to your Z system

or even the colloquial

Don’t fix it , if it’s not broke”.

It is not so much that old dogs can’t be taught new tricks but unlearning a belief will take time because the right hemisphere has dug in.

 So the pill of logic needs a little sugar of appreciation to help the rational medicine go down.

Cognitive psychologist at York University, Toronto Canada says that a zap to the head may help.

“ Brain stimulation techniques may eventually  offer a route to improving reasoning as has been used to stimulate creativity. "

But for now there is no short cut,  so he suggests practice being our best option.

Some recent studies with students studying for law exams benefited from training in rational thought. It was observed that the number of connections between frontal and parietal lobes and between the two hemispheres ( Caroline Williams in New Scientist 4th Oct 2014 cites Frontiers of neuroanatomy vol 6 p32) 

The catch is ,without regular practice this effect is almost certainly fades away a few months are the course ended.

So the old adage hold “ If you don’t use it your lose it”

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