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NOTABLE! Yes, but... (no, Yes, and!)

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MattL

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Heard this from a sales guy at work a few months back.

And now I stumble upon this and notice Andy of course shared this for free over 5 years ago.

Great tip. It also makes perfect sense.

Another similar thing I learned originally from Jordan Harbinger's podcast is to take longer pauses between people talking and you answering. The whole point being if you answer immediately after they've stopped speaking, doesn't that mean that you stopped listening to what they were saying and were just waiting to get a word in?
 

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Andy Black

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Another similar thing I learned originally from Jordan Harbinger's podcast is to take longer pauses between people talking and you answering. The whole point being if you answer immediately after they've stopped speaking, doesn't that mean that you stopped listening to what they were saying and were just waiting to get a word in?
I was literally telling out 12 year old that yesterday. We’ve no way of telling he’s heard us when he says something completely different straight after we finish talking.
 

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This stuff fascinates me. How easily communication can change based on the use of a single word, or even based on how the same words are positioned within a sentence!

The house is on fire but the homeowners have insurance.
(First half negated. Emphasis on the second half of sentence)
The house is on fire but the homeowners have insurance.
The "bad" is negated by the "good" so the situation becomes positive or reassuring.

The house is on fire and the homeowners have insurance.
(Equal emphasis on both halves of sentence)
The house is on fire and the homeowners have insurance.
The "bad" is equalized by the "good," removing or reducing emotion to statements of fact.

The house is on fire even though the homeowners have insurance.
(Second half negated. Emphasis on first half of sentence)
The house is on fire even though the homeowners have insurance.
The "bad" is emphasized at the expense of the good so that it becomes more important to deal with right now.

And now we will see the magic of language!

---

The homeowners have insurance but the house is on fire.
(First half negated. Emphasis on the second half of sentence)
The homeowners have insurance but the house is on fire.
Emphasis remains on second half but the meaning and emotional impact of the sentence changes.

The homeowners have insurance and the house is on fire.
(Equal emphasis on both haves of sentence)
The homeowners have insurance and the house is on fire.
The meaning of the sentence remains the same in this case.

The homeowners have insurance even though the house is on fire.
(Second half negated. Emphasis on first half of sentence)
The homeowners have insurance even though the house is on fire.

Emphasis remains on the first half, but the meaning of the sentence is completely different.


I used to focus solely on the effect of a word (such as but or and), but today I am also fascinated by sentence positioning and how important it is for the structure of communication. Sales people and copywriters should pay particular attention to the positioning of thoughts within sentences as a flip-flopped thought might go from positive to negative or even have no emotional influence at all!

Language is magic in the "real" world.
 
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Andy Black

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This stuff fascinates me. How easily communication can change based on the use of a single word, or even based on how the same words are positioned within a sentence!

The house is on fire but the homeowners have insurance.
(First half negated. Emphasis on the second half of sentence)
The house is on fire but the homeowners have insurance.
The "bad" is negated by the "good" so the situation becomes positive or reassuring.

The house is on fire and the homeowners have insurance.
(Equal emphasis on both halves of sentence)
The house is on fire and the homeowners have insurance.
The "bad" is equalized by the "good," removing or reducing emotion to statements of fact.

The house is on fire even though the homeowners have insurance.
(Second half negated. Emphasis on first half of sentence)
The house is on fire even though the homeowners have insurance.
The "bad" is emphasized at the expense of the good so that it becomes more important to deal with right now.

And now we will see the magic of language!

---

The homeowners have insurance but the house is on fire.
(First half negated. Emphasis on the second half of sentence)
The homeowners have insurance but the house is on fire.
Emphasis remains on second half but the meaning and emotional impact of the sentence changes.

The homeowners have insurance and the house is on fire.
(Equal emphasis on both haves of sentence)
The homeowners have insurance and the house is on fire.
The meaning of the sentence remains the same in this case.

The homeowners have insurance even though the house is on fire.
(Second half negated. Emphasis on first half of sentence)
The homeowners have insurance even though the house is on fire.

Emphasis remains on the first half, but the meaning of the sentence is completely different.


I used to focus solely on the effect of a word (such as but or and), but today I am also fascinated by sentence positioning and how important it is for the structure of communication. Sales people and copywriters should pay particular attention to the positioning of thoughts within sentences as a flip-flopped thought might go from positive to negative or even have no emotional influence at all!

Language is magic in the "real" world.
100% agree. I’m fascinated by how to get a point across simply, and in a positive manner. Written language is so much harder/challenging because the tone is missing. I suspect readers insert their own tone - like when I said “Good for you” to someone and they took it up the wrong way - they didn’t hear my tone and I suspect they heard it in the tone they’d use it.

I also find my first draft has half as many words as needed, or is clumsy when reread back.
 
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Oh man. That’s exactly what I meant. People use their own tone and assume that’s what the other person’s tone was.

“Good for you.” could be “Oh wow, that’s amazing! Good for you!” (If you’ve heard me speak then you can imagine how I’d be excited saying that.)

Or it could be construed as a really sarcastic “Good for you” put down.

Apparently that happened to me in this forum last year. I wrote “Good for you” and someone heard it in a different tone. My take? I’ll try to not reply with phrases that can be taken the wrong way, but the listener also has a responsibility.
 

TinyOldLady

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That was brilliant. I loved the throwaway comment at the end of “Keep your mouth shut and your mind open.”

@TinyOldLady ... I think it’s well worth creating a whole thread on this and posting that video. Can you do the honours?
Alright! I‘ll collect my thoughts and will create a thread ☺️
 

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I used to have a friend who sold drugs.

The police were extremely worried when a large batch of drugs were stolen from his car.

... until he told them he was selling laxatives that week.

They found that *highly* amusing.


Anyway, my friend was a very good salesman (selling to busy doctors in understaffed hospitals is quite a feat.)

Over a few pints every weekend he'd tell me stories and sales tips he'd learned.

I wish I'd paid more attention, but back then I didn't realise that selling was a key skill for all of us, even if our job title didn't include the word "Sales".

I can't remember a single nugget of gold, except for this one, and only because it came with a story to remind me.

When you're selling anything to anyone (products, services, even just your point of view), they're normally going to come back at you with some reasoned objection - some reason why what you just said is wrong, isn't going to work, or doesn't apply to them.

You can listen politely, hear them out, and then reply:

Yes, but (your response).


The problem with Yes, but is that it sounds an awful lot like you weren't actually listening to them, but that you were just waiting for your turn to talk again.

BUT is a powerful negative word.

It creates a big BUTTRESS between you and the result you want.

The conversation stops immediately you say Yes, but and you might as well both continue talking with your arms crossed.



Instead of saying:

Yes, BUT

Try saying:

Yes, AND



It's hard work doing this right.

You have to listen to what they said, work out why they said it, make your point by acknowledging what they said, and then ADD to the conversation POSITIVELY.




The way I always remember this tip?

My friend told me they were doing a role-play to practice Yes, AND.

They sat in a circle and took it in turns to say something inflammatory and hard to agree with.

The next person had to stand up and say "Yes, and" then try to put a positive spin on what was said whilst getting their point across.

A fantastic example of how NOT to do this was when someone said:

"Margaret Thatcher was the best thing to happen to Britain".

The next guy stood up and said:


Yes, and ...



BOLLOCKS
In the German language it translates as "ja, und" which closely resembles "Naund" which translates back into english as "so what". :D
 
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Andy Black

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In the German language it translates as "ja, und" which closely resembles "Naund" which translates back into english as "so what". :D
Wow. That's so apt. People are pretty much saying "So what" when they say "Yes, but" and completely ignore what you said.
 

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