Brent Darnell of Brent Darnell International made perhaps the most provocative presentation at the Certified Professional Services Manager (CPSM) day at the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) conference in Chicago.
He advocates that the best way to build your business is to “tap into the intangible, relationship side of business” by implementing “emotional intelligence” programs. Teach your “alpha males” how to have some empathy, respect, and warm human communication with peers, colleagues, subordinates and clients, and you’ll see measurable improvements in your business results.
Fair enough. He offered some examples of successful Emotional Intelligence programs, but, in making his presentation, described how he got people who didn’t want to participate to change their attitudes.
“We started with an operation with 21 managers, Darnell said. “(The organization) had two alpha males. We told them to change or be fired.” They changed.
“We’re going to from creating a transaction to positive emotional experience, focusing on their internal peoples’ emotional intelligence and how they focus on relationships.”
In other words, Darnell advocates that relationship and social skills are vital to business success — but indicates as well that a healthy dose of fear can be an effective motivator.
Darnell has an intriguing way of doing things. Teach people how to be sensitive, warm, empathetic and caring by threatening to fire them if they don’t agree to buy into the necessary changes, but there is method in the madness. Emotions count — a lot — in marketing and business, though we often seem to downplay these for safe and predictable (and boring) “corporate speak”.
Darnell of course has his own marketing agenda in speaking to the SMPS group. His website at www.brentdarnell.com has some useful resources.
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My SMPS Foundation White Paper on strategic alliance best practices will be released at a noon media conference today. I’ll also be at the SMPS table at from 2:45 to 3:15 p.m. at the River Exhibit Hall B (Sheraton Center) and of course can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.