Seduction in Business
Since my TED talk came out I have read many comments from people all around the world, attacking the combo of seduction and business, all coming out of misconceptions. So I'd like to explore this subject with you a little deeper with examples.
Seduction is about creating an attraction and a desire. We do this by creating a pull, making the other side want what we have; even when the other side doesn't know they want or need what we have. In reality it's all around us. Consumerism is all about seduction. When you think about it, do we really need the latest phone that just came out? What's wrong with the one we have? As a society, we get seduced into wanting more and more, even if we don't really need it.
Seduction in the following video is done through inspiration and touching the pain of losing a role model - a grandfather. They promise to keep you connected in the important moments.
Another good example are movie trailers - they give us just enough, making us want to see and experience the rest, creating curiosity and desire, motivating us to buy a ticket as soon as it comes out. They even release teasers, teasing us. It's totally about the energy of flirting, just like when dating.
Now, don't fall into the cliché of marketing, seeing a half-naked woman and thinking "This is seduction". It's one type of seduction - sexual seduction - which has been overused over many years in advertising.
It can be primal:
It can be classy:
It's still sexual seduction. The problem is that we get stuck on sexual seduction as if it's the only facet of seduction. Because of this we miss seeing seduction all around us in so many other formats.
On the other hand, have you ever seen an ad where something was presented and implied, yet it wasn't fully stated, and it caught your eye or heart?
This is also seduction. You are given just enough, waking up the desire in you to want to know more…Your curiosity is triggered and your playfulness.
When we hear someone is using seduction in their professional life, we assume that this means they are sleeping their way to the top. But in reality there is a different form of seduction at work - our Social Charm. It is that one thing in our personality that we are all born with, that as children get us the results we want, melting the hearts of all the adults around us. It looks very different from person to person – being funny, cute, sexy, smart, authentic… It's unique to our personality. As grownups, if we do not shut it down as a result of cultural conditioning, it becomes part of our special sauce for success.
JLo uses her charm all the time. Think of 3-4 nouns that describe her personality when she is in her element, write them down, then do the same for Ellen (the results are at the bottom). Like brand essence we can capture our personality's essence, which is our charm. The thing is that many people lose touch with their true nature, which is key to their success. This is exactly why I developed the 5 elements method helping people reach their full potential, like calibrating your being to where you are natural and in full authentic power.
Another area of seduction is sales. Again, people tend to think of seduction in sales as a woman or a man seducing the other person sexually to get them to buy. This is another misconception. Seduction is a connection we form with another, where we totally understand their need and fill it with what they need. The best sales people don't talk so much; they ask great questions that lead you to fill your own need with what they offer (that's if they have what you need). They are just there to facilitate it. Many sales people who are very good at sales are also very charming.
Not too long ago I bought insurance for the appliances at my home. I was told a technician would come to treat the appliances for free. I agreed. When the guy arrived, he put some material in two of them and pushed the on button. In reality they could have just shipped it to me. But he started asking questions about my appliances and before you know it was writing a new order for insurance that I didn't request. What was so charming about him was that it was like my mom asking me with care what I would do if this one broke or that one broke. He knew exactly how to get to my heart. I actually had to argue with him to cancel what he wrote and only added one thing instead of 5. When he left it blew me away how seductive this was. There was no need, no desire, yet by the time he left, I felt the need for the product. Genius!
And finally, negotiations - negotiations are a game of trying to find the overlap between two sides' range, where a deal could be struck. But it's not just about the range, it's also about how you carry yourself, how much you show your cards, what surprise cards you hold, and how you play with timing, like a comedian who needs to give the right punchline at the right time. Have you ever met someone that didn't feel like an open book? You couldn't fully understand them but you saw enough to get you curious. That's seductive and intriguing. It creates curiosity and desire.
One very important distinction I'd like to make is the difference between pure seduction and manipulation. The difference is in the intention. One is intending to take something without consent while leaving the other feeling used, the other has the intention of an authentic connection leaving you empowered. This is why seduction has gotten such a bad name because it's been misused by so many. Seduction has been presented over the years in a single way, but seduction is all around us in many beautiful ways. We just need to pay attention, and learn what we can do with this energy to propel success, while operating out of ethics and integrity.
When we tap into the energy of seduction, as if we are seducing someone, and feel it somatically - through the body - we can use this energy as a force to guide us towards the next steps, feeling it intuitively, which can lead us to the success we desire. The trick is to learn how to use this power for good while not making it personally sexual. This is why I finished my TED talk with "I did get a TED talk didn't I?"
What other examples of seduction do you see all around you?
** Results: Jlo = strong, sexy, feminine & fun. Ellen = funny, authentic, boyish & childlike. And if you scrolled down to see the results - you have just been seduced!