On the grand stage of American politics, as we are introduced to all candidates running for president, each one of us, in the very first minutes, are asking ourselves that first discerning question, “Why are they running for president?” If they don’t tell us, we deduct the answer from our own observations. If they do tell us, we wonder what is really behind what they are saying. Does their stated reason have the “ring of Truth?” and are they deemed transparent and well-intended?

At the root of our natural obsession of needing to know their motives is a deeper and more relevant question – can I trust them? That’s why “Motives Matter!” In a presidential campaign (a long and national sales cycle), the voters need to know if the candidate is trustworthy with their country and their future. And that answer cannot be determined until we know, at the very deepest level, what is the candidate trying to accomplish from doing this? To ascertain their motives, we screen their answer through our cynical test question of “what is in it for them?”

If the candidate’s answer is believed to be more about self-advancement, we are immediately turned off. If, however, their answer is the advancement of our country, we will be stirred to uncover the answer to the next automatic question – “Is the advancement of the country in line with our thinking and does it make intuitive sense?” If the answer to that question is also “yes”, then we will go to the third round of questioning – “do they have the plan and skills to pull it off?” If the answer again is another “yes”, we will view them now as a viable candidate. They have just passed the initial test. Now, all we have to do is compare them to other viable candidates to make our selection. But the answer to that initial question of “motive” does not mean we will now vote for them. It only means they are now qualified in our minds. They are now granted the status of being viewed as a viable candidate worthy of consideration. (How we make that final determination as to how we cast our vote, is a subject for a future writing.)

What is so interesting and very noteworthy about these very early thoughts at the beginning of the presidential campaign, about a new candidate’s motives to ascertain their viability is that they are precisely identical to what takes place in every sales cycle in the marketplace. Motives Matter, especially in those early moments of the sales cycle where the customer is qualifying you, not your product. This is the time when winning is not being determined but your personal feasibility and viability are being adjudicated. If you “pass” the test, it simply means, “Congratulations”, you are “in the race.” Now, we can talk about your solution.

This is borne out by science. In Revenue Storm’s Large (17,000+) data base of B2B Sales professionals; it became indisputably clear that Motives Matter in all sales situations. The data gathered from our validated Psychometric diagnostic instrument revealed that people with the highest and most intensive scores in the attribute cluster of “People Orientation,” consistently scored the highest in their individual ability to successfully navigate the perils of sophisticated sales cycles involving multiple calls on multiple people, at multiple levels over multiple months.

The “People Orientation” attribute cluster is defined as the “Predisposition for prioritizing time and attention toward people and their issues.” A person who scores high in the attributes contributing to this cluster can be seen as a person who is an outward focused individual who would be viewed as a loving and caring servant with honest and trustworthy motives. As an example, one of the attributes in this “People Orientation” cluster is “empathy” which is defined as a person who has the tendency to relate to other people’s issues or environment and react with sensitivity. Such a person would not advance themselves at the direct expense of their customer or voter. Whether you are running for President of the United States, or wish to be a professional Sales person, your Motives Matter. And any intuitive buyer and/or voter will be watching and making an initial judgement concerning you. And if that judgement comes up negative, it may not matter very much as to what you are selling or saying. They won’t be listening! Because Motives Matter!

So remember, the listeners mind is always questioning “why” are you doing this? As a Christian, you will always have the edge in sales and customer relationships if you abide in God’s word. The Bible says…

“For everyone looks out for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ.”

Philippians 2:21