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The ConsumHERist – 4-3-2-1

Posted on | May 30, 2008 | No Comments

By Delia Passi

Whenever I talk to the mainly male audiences that take my Selling to Women courses, I offer one very important bit of advice. Actually I offer a lot of very important advice, since men are so often clueless to the idiosyncrasies of communicating with women. And to be honest, women often make mistakes when they’re selling because they have often had men as teachers or role models in selling. But I digress. Don’t interrupt. That’s it. End of blog. I can go home now.

Actually it’s not as simple as that, so I’ll stick around and elaborate. Interrupting one another’s conversations is a pretty routine thing for most men. It’s almost as if a conversation is just another competition. It’s a little like a couple boxers in the ring. Boxers don’t politely wait until their adversary stops punching to take their own swing. No, they jump in with a few good shots of their own. Similarly, men jump into the middle of another guy’s riff about fishing, for example, to tell about the big one that got away from him.

Now, talking to a woman is not like a boxing match, but it’s the handiest analogy I could come up with. In any case, the unfortunate thing about communicating with women is that they can get annoyed when you interrupt. So don’t do it. Simple, right? No, not that simple.

Women also define interruption a little differently as well. Just because she’s not talking for a moment doesn’t necessarily mean she’s ready for you to jump in. She may be taking a moment to collect her thoughts before resuming.

That’s why I recommend that when selling to a woman, or when communicating with women in just about any situation, you adopt a simple procedure. When you think she’s stopped talking, count to four or count down from four, to give her a chance to resume. Whether she was just pausing or not, she will consider you to be a good listener and not a bad interrupter, if you just give yourself a few moments of silence. It works. You’ll see the difference if you use it regularly. You can get more sales, get more consideration, and in a social setting sometimes you can get more “affection,” if you know what I mean. I shared this with my husband and his response was: “4-3-2-1.”

Next week: That’s what I said!

attachment-1.jpegDelia Passi, Founder of WomenCertified® and author of Winning the Toughest Customer: The Essential Guide to Selling to Women is a regular columnist on eBrandMarketing. Want my take? Email me and visit my sites,


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