Jeremy Lennard – Managing Director – JS3 Recruitment
I know that not everyone is going to agree with the content of this blog so feel free to Swipe Left if you think I’m wrong.
For a while I have heard people saying that Millennials can’t sell. I’m not sure that I entirely agree with this, I think it’s a pretty sweeping statement and there are some great Millennials out there but maybe there is some truth in it and I blame Tinder. Here’s why…
I met my wife in a pub in 1995 (yes, I’m getting old). I was 21 and in those days it was exciting just to have a mobile phone that made calls. Text messages hadn’t been invented. Steve Jobs was in exile from Apple so the iPhone, App store and Social Media weren’t even in their infancy yet. Consequently there was no Tinder to rely on for a risk-free introduction from your smart phone. You actually had to put some effort in, it was potentially the most important “sales pitch” of your life. In my case, it was definitely a very cold call and the recipient wasn’t remotely interested in what I had to say. I was tenacious though. I didn’t give up after the first rejection. I tried the Need, Feature, Benefit sales model and eventually moved on to my personal USP’s. It seems to have worked as we have been married for 19 years.
So why do I think Tinder has killed sales ability? In my opinion, Tinder is the dating equivalent of sending an e-mail rather than picking up the phone to a prospective client. It’s the easy option. You don’t have to put in the hard yards and risk face to face rejection. It avoids the potential embarrassment of being told that your “services” are not required.
So what happens if the average Tinder user goes to a networking event? Do you have the confidence to approach someone you have never spoken to and engage them in conversation or will you just chat with the people you arrived with? How about the person sitting next to you on a plane or a train? They could be your next new client but you will never know if you insist on swiping left and right rather than engaging in a conversation. I once spent two hours sitting next to an HR Director on a train and she became a client. So in short, get your head out of your phone and put yourself out there, be willing to risk a few rejections before you actually go on a date. “People buy people” so get out there and sell. It’s about being engaging, not just being a face on a screen or a profile on a website.