The Importance of Silence


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Ever been in a conversation with someone that keeps interrupting you in the middle of a sentence? Or someone that tries to complete your sentence? Generally, you don’t leave thinking what a great conversation.

For entrepreneurs and salespeople alike, a little gap of silence is paramount when talking to customers or prospects. The first step is to listen intensely… try to listen to what’s not being said. Then, process everything… make sure they’ve finished what they wanted to say. Many times, people finish a sentence and because of the gap, they feel comfortable telling you more. We all know that the more information you can get, the better you can respond.

“The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.”

Mark Twain (1835 – 1910) American Author

So the next time you’re probing a prospect to understand their challenges and needs, leave a gap between when they finish talking and when you start. Not only will it improve your rapport with them, but in many cases they’ll also open up more, giving you the opportunity to glean much more information.

Of course, this is simply polite business manners, but its one of the best ways to make a better connection with your prospects and customers. Practice this approach with your coworkers, your friends and your family. And pay attention to the difference that it makes.

Make this your habit and you’ll be amazed at the rewards.

Arshad Merali
WOW Squared
Arshad Merali, former COO of and CEO of Aracnet Internet Systems, is a world-class business executive and serial entrepreneur with a passion for sharing his lessons and experiences with other business owners around the globe. Look for his book, Wow Squared: How To Really Wow Your Customers.


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