Have you ever heard of the story of Kyle? It’s a story of how another person’s small act of compassion had the power to save a young boy from an untimely end. In this episode, Alex Mandossian guides us to discover the intricacies of the word “compassion” and relate it to your personal life, as well as your business. We’ll also learn why there is no greater sales technique than compassion. Are there any Kyles in your life you need to show compassion to? Find out more about it here.
Listen to the Podcast Here:
The Power of Compassion
In this episode you’ll learn three key insights which I believe are critical to making you a highly skilled ethical influencer. Even if you think you’re not skilled at that at all. You’ll discover three words that are secretly buried in the magical word of compassion. You’ll learn why compassion is the single greatest sales technique of all. It’s been the greatest sales technique throughout all of humanity.
Third, you’ll learn that counter-intuitive strategy, which is you can only keep what you give away. Lean in and read carefully because this episode could have a significant impact on how you can quickly and easily win the hearts of others to get more business.
Have you heard of the book series Chicken Soup for the Soul? It was co-written by two good friends of mine. I’ve shared the stage with them. They’re joint venture partners and dear friends. I’ll call them my friends as long as I’m breathing. That’s Mark Victor Hansen and Jack Canfield. Jack named the book and originally was comprised of stories that were vetted and were surveyed on what the most meaningful stories were.
They didn’t come out of Jack and Mark’s minds or hearts. The stories they wrote didn’t make the first book. Eventually, it became a franchise. They made millions of dollars and probably they’ll be over one billion books sold by the time I leave earth. There’s one story that didn’t make the book. Yet this story is the most passed along story because of the internet. It’s called The Story of Kyle.
Many people think Kyle’s story’s about bullying. Some people believed it’s about overcoming life and death situations. I believe it’s about how compassion can’t only save a life, create a best friend for life, but also keep customers for life. One day, when I was a freshman in high school, I saw a kid from my class who was walking home from school, his name was Kyle. It looked like he was carrying all of his books.
I thought to myself, “Why would anyone bring home all of his books on a Friday? He must be a nerd.” I had a weekend planned, parties, football games, go to with my friends. I shrugged my shoulders and kept walking. As I was walking, I saw a bunch of other kids running toward this boy. They knocked off all his books from his arms and they started to trip him and he landed in the dirt. His glassed went flying off. I saw them land on the grass about ten feet away.
He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes. My heart went out to him even though I’d never met him. I jogged over to him as he crawled around looking for his glasses. I saw a tear in his eye and as I handed his glasses, I said, “Those guys are jerks. They should get lives of their own.” He looked at me and said, “Thanks.” There was a big smile on his face. It was one of those smiles that showed real gratitude.
I helped him pick up his books and asked him, “Where do you live?” As it turned out he lived near me. I asked him why I’d never seen him before. He said that he had gone to a private school and now he was going to the same school I was going. I would have never hung out with this kid if he had not left private school. Let me take a time out. This story is not about me. This story is being told by Kyle’s best friend.
[bctt tweet=”Never underestimate the power of your actions. With one small gesture, you can change a person’s life for better or for worse.” username=”AlexMandossian”]
We talked all the way home and I carried some of his books. He turned out to be a pretty cool kid. I asked him if he wanted to play football with my friends and he said, “Yes.” Time out. Has anyone ever extended an invitation of compassion? Let’s call it service. Not a random act of kindness but an intentional act of appreciation. These two kids met for the first time, but has anyone ever done that with your family, with your friends, in your business and you decided not to take them up on it?
That is the first big mistake when you sell. When you say no and the sale is there, we’re talking about a relationship but that’s what selling is. It’s not transactional. It’s relational and the moment a prospect or someone that you’re talking to for the first-time senses or smell that you’re being transactional because you want something from them. That is when they know you’re selling them and you are not having their best interest in mind.
I’m talking to you right now, I’m outside of the story, I want to be clear about that. I know you have to pay the bills; you probably have a few suppliers and team members you have to pay. If you have kids, you’re taking care of that. You probably feel unappreciated. When someone offers you something like what was offered to Kyle and you’re a total stranger. I went through a humiliating situation but I’m going to say yes. That’s what he said, he said, “Yes.”
Look for those triggers because those are triggers which puts all selling aside and it allows you to start the relationship. You go from transaction to relational compassion. Let’s continue the story. We hung out all weekend and the more I got to know Kyle, the more I liked him. My friends thought the same of him. Monday morning came and there was Kyle with a stack of books again. I stopped him and I said, “You’re going to build some serious muscles with that pile of books every day.”
The Graduation Speech
He laughed and he handed me half the books. Over the next four years, Kyle and I became best friends. When we were seniors, we began to think about college. Kyle decided to attend Georgetown and I decided on Duke. Let’s take a time out, if you’re outside of the United States Georgetown and Duke Universities are very prestigious universities on the East Coast of the United States. Back to the story. I knew that we would always be friends and that the miles would never be a problem.
He was going to be a doctor and I want to get my business degree on a football scholarship. Kyle was valedictorian of our class. I teased him all the time about being a nerd. He had to prepare for a speech for graduation and I was glad it wasn’t me having to get up there and speak on graduation day. I saw Kyle that day. He looked great. He was one of those guys that found who he was during high school. He grew muscles. He looked good in glasses. He had more dates than I had and all the girls loved him.
“Sometimes I was jealous,” I said to myself. Today was one of those days. I could see that he was nervous about his speech. I smacked him on the back and said, “Big guy, you’ll do great.” He looked at me with one of those grateful looks. He smiled and said, “Thanks.” As he started his speech, he cleared his throat and began. He said, “Graduation is a time to thank those who helped you make it through those tough years. Your parents, your teachers, your siblings, maybe a coach, but mostly your friends.
I’m here to tell all of you that being a friend to someone is the best gift you can give them. I’m going to tell you a story.” I looked at my friend with disbelief as he told the story of the first day we met. He had planned to kill himself over that weekend. He talked of how he had cleaned out his locker so his mom wouldn’t have to do it later and he was carrying all his stuff and books home. He looked hard at me and gave me a little smile.
He said, “Thankfully, I was saved. My friend saved me from doing the unthinkable and unspeakable.” I heard the grasp go through the crowd as this handsome, popular boy told us about his weakest moment. I saw his mom and I saw his dad. They were both looking at me smiling that same grateful smile that he had. Not until that moment, did I realize it’s depth. Never underestimate the power of your actions with one small gesture you can change a person’s life for better or for worse.
The universe puts us in each other’s lives to impact one another in a special way. Look for that gift in others. The next time you have an opportunity to give someone a gift, remember you can only keep what you give away. That’s the story. It doesn’t matter what the gentleman’s name was, who was telling the story, what matters is what happened. How does this relate to sales? How does this relate to business? It relates in every single way.
Three Words In Compassion
I don’t think it’s a story of bullying. I don’t even think it’s a story of an act of kindness or even a story of life and death because he did save a life. There was an opportunity and this young man helped Kyle. That’s all it took to play football that weekend and bring him in to his circle of friends. He saved his life. The Dalai Lama who I’ve shared this stage with once in Canada. He goes around the world talking about compassion. If you know his story when he had to flee Tibet and go through the Himalayan mountains.
Eventually his shoes were worn out. He was escorted but what had happened after Tibet had been conquered by the Chinese at the time, he eventually got to one of the Northern Indian City of Dam Sala. That’s where he still lives. He lives on about $10 a day. He’s a monk but he’s world renowned. He’s written several books and speaks several languages. How does this relate to business? The word compassion has three words inside of it.
The first word is compass. If you were to build a business, if you’re going to be good at sales, which is nothing more than transferring your confidence to someone else and doing it with relation versus transaction and doing it with compassion. The first thing you need is direction. You have to know what you want and find what they want. The first word is compass which means direction. That’s what we use a compass for. When you’re lost or to prevent getting lost you got a compass in the palm of your hand.
The second word is passion. Passion is about empathy. It’s about suffering. It’s not about sympathy. All greatness is found through suffering. The Buddha said, “Life is suffering.” Those were the three words he said. It doesn’t have to be that way, not if you exchange compassion with each other. Passion is that source of empathy that you have towards someone else. It can even be a pet, it can be a goldfish that you feed every single day, but empathy and sympathy are different.
Sympathy is not being included in that relationship. It’s more transactional. Feeling sorry for someone is not passionate. When it comes from the heart and you can identify suffering, this is what I believe, you may have different definitions, but I believe it’s being empathetic. What’s the difference? In the previous episode I defined empathy versus sympathy. Sympathy is going fishing in the middle of the ocean and you don’t like to be in that bobbing boat and you get seasick.
You’re there with a friend and you vomit because you’re seasick. You’re vomiting over the side of the boat. Sympathy is putting your arm over the shoulders of that friend and say, “Don’t worry it’s going to be okay.” With that definition, sympathy to me is transactional, you’re not part of that suffering. Empathy is putting your arm around your friend and vomiting with them. I know that it’s a graphic demonstration and description, but I don’t think you’ll ever forget it.
[bctt tweet=”All greatness is found through suffering.” username=”AlexMandossian”]
The third word is ion. If you look up the definition of ion, it is a molecule with electrical charge due to a loss of electrons. What does that mean? Not much, but I know that the molecular level you’re made up of ions that are constantly moving. Could it be in your molecular makeup that having compassion can have a huge impact and people can sense it from this cellular level? I heard Mark Victor Henson say, in co-author of the Chicken Soup for the Soul, he said, “At the soulular level.”
I believe that cellular memory can be transferred from one generation to the next. Whatever compassion you show, even if you’re thrown out of your country and you were the spiritual leader like the Dalai Lama. He’s always showing compassion to those who consider him their enemy. Compassion is very necessary in any sales exchange. Having compassion is more about them, your prospect, than it is about you.
No matter what kind of problems you’re coming in with because they’re coming in with their own problems. I’d like to think of it as what Tony Alessandra said who is not only a bestselling author but a good friend. I consider him a mentor. He wrote a book about it. Compassion is about the platinum rule.
In sales and marketing the platinum rule will beat the golden rule every time. The golden rule is not obsolete. It it’s biblical. It goes back to Judeo-Christian history, but every religion and every spiritual tradition teach us some form of it.
The golden rule is “Do on to others as you want to be done on to.” What if your prospect doesn’t want what you want? What if they have other agendas that you haven’t found out because you’re not compassionate enough to find out. What if instead self-servingly going for the sale and the kill on the transaction, closing the sale, you instead plant seeds of kindness. Intentional acts of appreciation. Those seeds germinate and through story-telling like I do episode after episode, then you sell.
You’re not selling them, they’re buying. People hate to be sold but they love to buy, Jeffrey Gitomer. Compassion has three words: compass for direction, passion for empathy and suffering, and ion to have it at the molecular level. Think of the platinum rule, “Do unto others as they want to be done unto.” Not as you want to be done unto. Everyone has different agendas, different values, different beliefs, different spiritual commitments, but if you do unto them as they want to be unto, how do you do that?
You do that by finding out compassionately. It’s about keeping what you ultimately give away. You’re giving away your compassion but you’re gaining the sale. Whether it’s a relationship. Whether it was a stranger who once turned to your best friend like Kyle’s story. Whether it’s a family member who’s about to die and you apologize to them. Life would have been better if you apologized years ago. Without getting too heavy because this is about business, but business can be heavy.
I’ve gone broke before. I’ve seen people lose their lives and take their lives because of the loss of money. You can get the money back, but you can’t get back the time. Is there one person you can show more compassion to that has nothing to do with the sale. It comes down to forgiving them or asking for their forgiveness? No matter whose fault it was and you’ve been holding on to that. Why wait until you get two days to live?
Intentional Acts Of Appreciation
I’ve studied Tibetan Buddhism for over 4,500 hours through another mentor of mine. That was the episode on Karmic Marketing. What my mentor taught me is that in 600 plus years, he’s the only westerner that ever got the Geshe distinction of being twenty-years in the monastery. He’s teaching the tradition of Mahayana Buddhism out of Tibet. The goal is for you to not only study what makes people tick but to find out. This is called intentional acts of appreciation.
It’s much powerful than random acts of kindness. It’s about giving service without keeping score and it always rebounds back. Maybe not from the source you gave but from other sources. Some people call it cause and effect in the west. Some people call it karma in the east. If you don’t keep score then you have nothing to worry about.
Going back to the Tibetans they say, “If you have a problem and there’s no way you can solve it, then you’ve got nothing to worry about. If you have a problem and it’s easy to solve then again you got nothing to worry about.” Yet worry takes our lives earlier than it needs to. It eats away at us. Worrying about the sale, getting rejected and how you’re going to pay for your next meal. I don’t know what situation you’re in, but I know that this doesn’t mean that you need to be wimpy in your transaction.
Candor Versus Bullying
There’s a big difference between being candid and being a bully. Candor versus bullying. Candor is being direct and being vulnerable It’s taking a risk. Being direct and not vulnerable has no risk. I would call that bullying. It’s been a problem more and more in schools. The reason the story of Kyle has so much meaning to me and that’s one of the few times that I have not wept and that was the first time I told the story.
Back in the first grade, I was at Allandale Elementary and there was a guy named Hans. He’s German, he dressed differently, he barely spoke English. He wore these glasses that were very thick. As first graders, we can be as cruel as eleventh graders in high school. It was in Mrs. Lambert’s class. I always remember that. My mother has been teacher for 54 years she taught third grade. My greatest fear was she would be teaching and substituting in one of my classes. She happened to do that that year.
It was karmic backlash of what I did, but it was more about what I didn’t do because Hans was like Kyle. Girls and boys were making fun of him because he looked different, he talked different. We were playing European football which is soccer here in the United States. They tripped him, he fell and his glasses went flying and broke. Everyone was laughing. I wasn’t laughing. I had empathy for Hans, but I was part of this group and I didn’t want to look bad. I didn’t want to be vulnerable.
I didn’t want to be candid. I let the bullying work. I didn’t laugh at him. I felt awful but I didn’t do anything about it. You have to do something about it like asking for the sale or handing over the contract. I have forgiven myself and I don’t know what happened to Hans, hopefully he’ll listen to this one day. I’ve been sorry about that as long as I can remember. When I re-read the story of Kyle, which I do on stage a lot.
I remember what I could have done and I always go out of my way to do that regardless of losing a friend or two who think it’s uncool, looking bad, taking a risk or being rejected by people who are poking fun. Because of the story of Hans, I hope he’s still around. I hope he listens to this. I didn’t see him after the first grade.
[bctt tweet=”Sympathy is more transactional. Empathy is relational.” username=”AlexMandossian”]
I remember my mother, Carol, who I share stories of a lot with my students. She came into that first-grade class. She usually taught third-grade and she looked at me with this look of disappointment after she found out what happened. She thought that her son, would have done something about it. She thought that she raised me differently. I didn’t want to take my risk with my friends. I will take that risk no matter how good my friends are if it ever happens on my watch and I hope you will too.
As a public service available to all entrepreneurs on six continents, even in Antarctica. I want to make an offer to you that cost no money. It’s a public service, it’s not behind a membership area which is called gated content. This is ungated. It’s at 12:00 noon Pacific, 3:00 PM East Coast time here in the US. It’s my Friday Show. It’s different than this show which is delivering 25 years of sales and marketing know-how and mistakes like Hans and doing it in 25-minute chunks. It comes out every Monday.
I may go into a second episode where I interview people but that won’t happen until I have at least 52 episodes. It will be paying homage to the 52nd episode which is one full year. Every week, no matter where I am in the world this Saturday in Asia and Australia. You get access to me live where you can ask questions and I do what’s called a master class. A master class is usually on a topic that has a theme every month. Each month we cover one theme and I approach from different angles.
It usually is about sales and marketing, but we go into the inter-game like I did for this particular episode which I hope you enjoyed. To get to my Friday Show, all you need to do is type in MarketingOnline.com/fridaylive. You will see every week you’ll go to a brand-new Facebook post because at this time it’s on a Facebook Live. You can check in with my other students, tribes and people that have never paid me any money.
Other people have paid me tens of thousands of dollars. Two of them have paid over $350,000 and we are all equal. I hope you join me for that. I want to give you that as a gift. I may mention it in other episodes. This is the first episode that I’m making this announcement because I can only keep what I give away.
Quick Review Of The Episode
Let’s go to our reviews like I do in every episode. The three words secretly buried in that magical word compassion are compass for direction, passion for empathy and feeling someone else’s suffering, and ion which is at the molecular level, you have a net charge in making a difference in someone. Number two, I believe that compassion is the single greatest sales technique of all. The Dalai Lama knows it. Spiritual leaders know it.
People who have it, you can feel it and they don’t have to be wimpy and they can be billionaires. Many successful people have built libraries, some have built cities, some have built schools and it’s all because of compassion. I believe you can be compassionate while you’re in business. Number three, the counter-intuitive strategy which I mentioned is that you can only keep what you give away. Keeping compassion does you no good.
You don’t want to do unto others as you don’t want to be done unto. You want to do unto them as they want to be done unto. That’s the platinum rules and the tip of the hat goes to my good friend Doctor Tony Alessandra.
Remember, as with every episode these insights will only work for you if you work them. Make sure you execute what you’ve learned, which means do it. All Selling Aside will prove to be a very valuable weekly public service that I hope you consume. You can tell other people about it as well.
I hope you have a study buddy or an accountability partner. Because if you start utilizing what you’re learning here then your future will be bigger. It will be brighter and most importantly, you get to create it on your own terms. I want you to go to AllSellingAside.com/iTunes and I want you to type in your biggest and boldest takeaway or a-ha moment experienced in this episode.
If you haven’t already done this with any of the other episodes, then iTunes will ask you in the review section after you’re done to rate the episode. I hope I’ve earned five stars from you. Don’t review my podcast as a whole. Give me a takeaway so that I know what you know and what you’ve learned in that way I know that I’ve made an impact and I know you will as well. Will you do that for me?
If you have already done this, and you already have given me a review then thank you. What I ask every single week is write your biggest takeaway on an index card or somewhere you can find it and go back again. Because even though it’s free, it comes for tens of millions of dollars of marketing sales and know-how, which is a blessing. I know how to take complicated things and make them understandable and executable and hopefully easy to transfer to other people.
I hope that’s what I’ve done here. I want you to go ahead and declare your one big take away in the iTunes review section. Visit AllSellingAside.com/iTunes it will take you directly there. It will take three minutes out of your day. What you declare may provide you a lifetime of learning. A declaration is public. If you’re used to declaring things privately, I don’t call that a declaration, I call that an affirmation.
Both are powerful but the declaration is where you’re becoming vulnerable and you’re letting the rest of the world know what was important to you. I have one final gift in honor of this 43rd episode. It’s a complimentary access for my four-part video eCourse. Why am I doing this? Because I believe in four different videos you will learn how to identify your market, which is difficult for many. You’ll learn how to create an irresistible message.
You’ll learn how to capitalize on the most powerful and lucrative media sources available to you right now. I gave you where to go before but here it is again, go to MarketingOnlineMentor.com. Thank you for indulging me. I hope our paths cross again for All Selling Aside. This is the show dedicated to making ethical influence within your reach so that you can achieve and even exceed your sales potential. When it comes to selling, you’re not as good as you think you are, you’re better.
You’re selling all the time, but you may not look at it that way in other parts of your life. Please do whatever it takes to join me again because our topic will be about What Entrepreneurs Lack Most. I can’t wait to connect with you then. Bring someone aboard so they can read with you. You can have compassion with each other. You can learn and earn together. It’s always easier to learn with someone else or three or four other people. This has been fun for me. I hope this has been fun for you.