Already knee deep in problems, a client calls and rejects everything. Worse, they demand absurd requests. Do you know what I mean?. They ask for crazy stuff just to piss you off.
Gloom takes over the team. Everyone agrees. Let’s call the client and tell them we cannot deliver.
It took me a few minutes to notice. We fell into a trap. This kind of trap sneaks up on you. The feeling strangles you and clouds your judgment. That feeling is hopelessness.
We feel sorry for the individual who loses hope. What happens when the entire group loses hope?
Now you face a collective loss of hope. History tells us these situations give rise to dictators and tyrants.
Here, we only have a team of four people. The stakes are small. For those involved, it still hurts.
The Most Powerful Leadership Tool In History
It takes a herculean effort to regain hope on our own. That’s why it makes a powerful leadership tool. A tool the wicked weaponize for evil purposes.
As leaders, marketers or sales people, a loss of hope offers us an opportunity.
A Leader Is A Dealer In Hope – Napolean Bonaparte
A clever observation from two centuries ago still holds true today. When people feel hopeless they are at their most vulnerable. They become easy pickings for exploitation.
With positive intentions and an ethical framework, we can exploit this for good.
The Source Of Hopelessness
Our team gave up hope of delivering for this client. I could now carry out my ideas without permission. Earlier, the team would have fought me.
Now defeated, they let me pursue my plan. I told them my plan to get back on track. Will it work? We shall see. There’s a good chance this gambit could fail.
Find The Pain
In any market, your audience feels pain about something. They may feel hopeless about solving that pain. This hopeless feeling may cover something deep, like life or love. It could also be ultra specific like nailing the perfect golf drive.
Offering a sense of hope to those feeling helpless wins you their attention, It wins you a following. Deliver on your promise of hope and you win an army of loyal defenders.
Does Your Market Feel Helpless?
These steps help you become that leader who brings hope to the hopeless. First, identify the pain they feel. Next, go through this list of questions. If you answer yes to all of them, offering a ray of hope gives you a chance to win their favor.
- Have they tried to fix it before?
- Do they think about the problem every day?
- Have they given up trying?
If they’ve given up trying, it’s a sign they feel hopeless about fixing it.
Here’s the risk with this strategy. If you fail to deliver results, they may turn on you. Think about it. You just took them on a rollercoaster of hopeless, to hope and back to hopeless. How would you feel?
Before you commit to this strategy, how confident are you in your ability to deliver?