I don’t really follow boxing much anymore. But, taking a quick break from a recent writing project, I put on the television and caught a fight. Both terrific young fighters, mainly equal in skill, both had a good inside game, but one of them had the better jab. And, that was the difference-maker.
You see, with a good enough left jab (with a southpaw it would be a right jab), you can virtually control a fight. You can keep a charging opponent away, you can drive your opponent back. You can protect yourself just by virtue of having a leather fist in your opponent’s face, and…you can set up the next punch you want to throw, whether a hard right, a left hook or a shot to the body.
The jab is the fundamental punch in boxing. The greats from Willie Pep to Muhammad Ali to Sugar Ray Leonard to Manny Pacquiao all had great jabs. Yes, there have been the champs who didn’t; typically the shorter sluggers, but they were few and far between.
So, what does this all have to do with sales and positive persuasion; the two usual topics of this blog?
We all have a fundamental “punch” so to speak. Our personal left jab. That “asset of value” we bring to the table that establishes the frame from which all else proceeds.
It might be your warm smile that immediately sets others at ease and opens them to your ideas. It might be your obvious interest in them as a human being and how you can be of service. It might be your ability to ask questions that draw out information, helping you to help them obtain what it is they want or need from the relationship or transaction.
Whatever your jab is, keep working on it. Practice it. Refine it. It’s a big part of what makes you…you. You might not think it’s a big deal, but it sets you up for success in all your relationships; both business and personal.
So, what is your left jab? Did you come by it naturally? Did you have to work hard to develop it? Perhaps both?
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