It was a ho-hum Sunday afternoon in the city of Poway, just northeast of San Diego. I made my way into a US Bank satellite branch inside a Vons supermarket to pay my Visa statement. One teller was helping another customer while the other was seated stationary at the desk/counter.
I greeted the one sitting down, handed her my payment and sat in one of the two chairs facing her. She began moving her fingers across the keyboard to access my account. With a few clicks of the mouse she was on the webpage she wanted.
I watched her go through the motions as she focused on her monitor. Not a word was uttered. I scanned behind me to see if there was anything remotely interesting happening in the store. Nothing. I began to feel as if I was just another cog in the wheel of her dull workday.
It was business as usual for this teller until I broke the ice…
Pointing to her gold foil bag of Lindt Lindor Truffles on her desk I asked, “How do you like those?”
You wouldn’t believe what happened next…
It’s as if the clouds parted, night turned into day, and she won the lotto. My teller’s face instantly lit up with a humongous smile. Her eyes grew larger and she focused entirely on me. Score one victory for your editor.
She replied, “I love them. A customer gave those to me the day before. I especially like the ones wrapped in white.”
Then she began processing my payment with more vim and vigor. Her tone and posture became enthusiastically positive. She smiled and became quite engaging. In short, she came alive.
What just happened?
I created an emotional connection with her and we bonded immediately. Now instead of being on different sides of the desk – she’s on my side looking out for me. And isn’t this a good thing?
Here are three keys you can trigger to create an emotional connection with anyone…
1) Observe. Do a little detective work. Look for clues in behavior, body language and surroundings. There’s probably nothing worse in communicating than looking straight at someone without really seeing anything.
2) Listen. Pay attention to the other person’s words and tone. Nod your head in agreement. Shy away from controversy. If you listen intently to what someone is saying, you’ll discover little signposts. Following one of these signposts can give you the power to become a killer conversationalist.
3) Smile. When you smile you’re giving something away. You have something positive to offer. It shows people you’re not only there just for yourself. It creates a connection without saying one word.
In my experience, life is what you make of it. You have the power to trigger positive experiences anytime you want by creating an emotional connection. And aren’t positive experiences what bring you the most joy and happiness and make life worth living?