Diversity in Selling

Friday, October 4 2013

Canada is an amazing country! We have welcomed people from around the world and we embrace individuals regardless of colour, creed, sexual orientation or gender. We accept refugees, and those who simply want a better life for their children. We’re proud of being open to new ideas, new foods, new ways of solving old problems. Over the past 300 years, we’ve gone from hundreds of first nation dialects to speaking hundreds of languages from across the globe. What a rich and evolving culture!

That may not be comfortable for everyone. Sometimes language gets in the way of good communication. There can be misunderstandings. We do not  always appreciate differences in the way we dress. We may have difficulty knowing how to behave.

As a salesperson, I’ve noticed that regardless of a person’s background, we have a lot in common.

Most people are good. There are exceptions, but as a general rule, people are good-hearted. Start with that assumption until proven otherwise.

Nearly everyone simply wants:

  • A chance to earn a decent living
  • A safe home for themselves and their families
  • To be respected
  • To be trusted
  • An opportunity to become successful
  • A fair deal
  • A feeling that they’ve won

Generally, individuals like to talk about themselves if you show genuine interest.

Most of us will buy from someone we like, trust and respect.

Do we need to treat people from other cultures differently? I don’t think so.

  • We approach everyone with respect
  • We treat them with dignity
  • We show a genuine interest and curiosity in their background
  • We offer to explain things differently if they don’t understand
  • We acknowledge that we can learn something of value from everyone we meet

In addition to all the morally sound reasons to get comfortable with diversity, it also makes good economic sense. Recent statistics reveal that in Toronto, half of all residents were born in another country. If you’re not comfortable with diversity, you’re missing a huge market!