While we teach our kids to be respectable when in school, we then encourage them to tear the opposition asunder when they play sports.
Getting the right balance between competition and aggression is very difficult. I see this with team leads who try to bully others into working harder (ironically, these targets are usually the workhorses) and with sales people who try to intimidate others into buying products.
Do ‘Aggressive’ Sales Tactics Work?
I read Doyle Slayton most every day and he gives two tips to keep you winning against your fiercest competitor. ‘Remember what makes you different and why is that better?
And then create opportunity around your competitor’s weakness? ‘There is no room to be timid.
Be professionally aggressive and crush the competition!”
How to Outsell Your Competitors
Now, this makes sense up to a point, but…
While it’s important to be aggressive in the pursuit of business (we all need to make a living, right?), I try to avoid using this technique.
- Aggressive types tend to intimidate others
- Their energy tends to be negative charged
- They tend to alienate team members
- Fear doesn’t generate trust
- Damage their own health in the long run
But it does have its place.
Look at some of the leading business leaders and you’ll see the words steel, tough, ruthless, hard and other adjectives used to define their winning management style.
So, it does seem to work at an executive level.
But, how about further down the food chain? Can you bully your staff and get away with it.
Maybe you can in the short-term but in time they will look for ways to undermine you. Then you’re in trouble as you’ve lost their trust and possibly your power base in the process.
Rather stay focused, know your enemy, and then use your charm… as aggressively as possible, of course.
What do you think?
How aggressive is aggressive? Where do you draw that line?