Remember who you’re talking to

How many times have you heard someone speaking to a group or gathering and seemingly forgot who they were talking to? It’s like telling people who already have a job, how to apply for a job. There is a lot of other social topics I could use but the point is, really look at and understand who you are talking to.

Years ago, we were selling a hotel to a very well known and respected publicly traded hotel REIT. The owners were two family members and were feeling their oats thinking they were about to make the deal of a lifetime. I remember the introductory conference call like it was yesterday. Ha. While the sellers only had this one hotel, the public REIT had bought or sold 500+ hotels. To say they knew what they were doing is an understatement. So, we are about five minutes into the get-to-know-you stage of the call, when a very minor issue arose. One of the sellers (a little full of himself) said to the buyer (REIT) very seriously, “have you guys ever bought a hotel before?” The REIT quietly said yes and thanked the seller for their time and just never called back. The sellers forgot who they were talking to and tried to show how smart they were.

I learned on that call 14 years ago to never ever lose your cool because once you do, very seldom can you take it back. I once taught a young couples Sunday school class at church for a good five years. They were all young couple trying to figure out life and I remember tailoring my lessons to things that would interest them and life lessons that were important to them.

I love watching old NCIS shows and the main character is Jethro Leroy Gibbs. He still uses a flip phone and is old school in every way. His staff will try to explain some technical computer situation and every time he holds up his hand and says, “in English!” Ha.

Before you get on a conference call or speak to a group it is usually a good thing to really remember who you are talking to and use terms and use subjects that will matter to them. KT

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