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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Lessons From My Foot Doc

One of the best communicators I know is my podiatrist.

Any time I see him, he’s quick, precise, and I’m immediately better. Here’s some of the things he does.

Years ago I met him, he noticed my book. “Tocqueville? Democracy in America? I haven’t read that since high school.”

TJ?”

Yup.”

In ten seconds, he had used my stuff to establish his mastery. He knew my book, I knew his school.

I explained my symptoms, he named it, what caused it, and how it was fixed. Four minutes.

I don’t give professionals much trust until they earn it. This guy is driving the bus in four minutes.

Then he taped up my foot with three, one foot lengths of tape.

I’m a jock. I play hurt. I figured I’ve been taped for football, wrestling, lacrosse, hockey, and tennis probably over 10,000 times. This guy uses three pieces of tape and takes the pain away.

Hey, that’s some taping!”

Yup, I’m pretty good.” Grin.

Took a couple of months, but I followed his regimen and cured. Working out is breaking down and bringing back the body. This was more debilitating than usual, but the cure worked the same.

Last week – I went back to see the foot doctor. Actually, two weeks before I had sent my wife to him and he had again provided sudden service. I have been in small pain for a couple of years and suddenly figured, “I know a great doctor. Why don’t I go get fixed?”

He didn’t remember me. He didn’t remember my wife, who had been in four hours earlier for a followup. Then, “oh yes, oh yes, of course I remember!” Yeah right. He just wanted to do the diagnosis.

Listened to my description (rehearsed and read) for a minute.

I bet this hurts.” One finger. Stars and planets!

I bet this doesn’t hurt.” A light thumb right next to the pain point. He’s right.

Okay. Here’s the situation” A one minute explanation. Then,

I used to have a rack of brochures. Now I just go to Google.” Picture of a foot with drawings on it.

And here’s the skeletal view.”

He screws up his face like he’s thinking. I ask, “What are you working on?”

I’m trying to figure out how much you need to know.”

What are my options?”

Well I’m going to order an xray just to show I’m right. However, if you want, I can also order an MRI so you get a better picture.”

Will an MRI help you?”

“No, I already know the problem.”

Well I’ve looked at MRIs before and I never learned anything. And let’s re-establish, you’re driving this bus.”

Good. Here’s what we’re going to do...”

Best things I learned.
  1. Establish mastery in a couple of seconds. If you can’t, notice more and learn quicker.
  2. Show ostentatious mastery in the little things. Creates trust for the big things.
  3. Nobody cares what you know. What do you know about me?
  4. The faster you move, the less extraneous crud comes into play.
  5. You can be totally respectful without really caring. Respect is not care, but constructively focusing. If you care and don’t know what you’re doing, I really have other priorities.
  6. Don’t offer more than the customer wants to buy. If you have to offer more, your solution is wrong.

Sales Lab Model – a good place to start.
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