Chapter 15 (selection)
Perceptions have become the ruling factor in everything we see or believe. Perceptions set the standards by which others judge us. Most people don’t realize the power perceptions have in the business world, as well as in daily interactions in our communities.
“Often, we find that perceptions can be false, but it still doesn’t excuse the fact that they have a major influence on our success.
One situation that comes to mind, was going to a car dealership and trying to get assistance. My wife and I had just come from the water slide, so our attire was very casual. We stopped at a local dealership to look at a new truck, for me. I had my eye on a new Ford F-150 Supercrew.
Well, as life goes, we walked around the dealership for about 20 minutes before anyone approached us or even asked if we needed any assistance. Once the first contact was made, the salesman began showing us everything except what I went there to look at.
Finally, I told him I wanted to look at a new F-150 Supercrew, and his response was, ‘Those are pretty pricey vehicles.’
I replied, ‘Really? How pricey are they?’
We slowly made our way over to three rows of trucks, as if we were wasting his time. We test drove an XLT version with cloth interior, and my wife said, ‘No way.’
I then asked him for a Lariat – with all the bells and whistles. He looked at me in amazement, like, ‘What does this guy know about our top-of-the-line truck?’
He was reluctant to pull one out for a test drive. We finally got to drive one, though, and my wife and I knew that was what we wanted. Well, the color we wanted was three rows in, so more drama started.
The salesman asked if we were ‘serious about purchasing a truck,’ because it would be a large task to move the two rows of trucks to get to the one we wanted. I looked him sternly in the eye and said, ‘If you want to sell a truck tonight, you better start moving trucks.’
The drama didn’t stop there… We went inside to do the paperwork, and they pulled our credit – their attitudes changed 180 degrees! All of sudden, I became ‘Mr. Whittaker’….and the salesman quickly asked, ‘Would you like something to drink?’
There still was one big problem. That dumb guy was catering to me, instead of to my wife, and that was when his night became very hard!
I was filling out paperwork, when my wife asked to ‘assist’ me…the rest was history. She took control of the situation and informed the salesman that she would be purchasing the truck on her own, because she had a job and the credit score to do it.
I just shrugged my shoulders and said, ‘Talk to her.’ The end result was – I was getting my truck.
Well, the contract came out from the finance office, and it was off by sixty cents a month. My wife demanded they do the contract, again. The finance guy lost his mind, but regained it when he realized she wasn’t joking.
She even made them fill the truck up with gas, before we drove off, waving a sarcastic ‘Thanks, guys!’ -Isaiah
Perceptions controlled this whole transaction – without a doubt – at several junctions. Think about this the next time perceptions become your main focus.
Be careful of perceptions.