You Gotta Have Heart

Damn Yankees is one of my all-time fav movies. The story is a retelling of the Faust legend, set in baseball, and to music. The hero cuts a deal with “Mr. Applegate” to become Joe Hardy, the baseball slugger his favorite team needs to beat the damn Yankees.

Ray Walston was consummate as Mr. Applegate. Gwen Verdon, as his assistant Lola, was all Bob Fosse choreography (and I had a mad crush on her).

So, what is there that will transform each one of us into the slugger that beats the Yanks? This was a fairy tale. There is no deal with the devil, no easy way out, no overnight success.

But there is one thing that will make a big difference. All of our experience tells us it’s true.

All you really need is heart

Recently, an executive I know observed, “marketing today is technology”. He’s right.

“Keep your eye on the ball and hit ‘em where they ain’t.” That was the advice of “Wee Willie” Keeler, a Hall of Famer right fielder who played from 1892 to 1910.

That is the first reason that “heart” is both defining and competitively differentiating.

The second reason is that heart teaches me to care about you as a person. Heart leads to empathy.

“The state of empathy, or being empathic, is to perceive the internal frame of reference of another with accuracy and with the emotional components and meanings … as if one were the person.” – Carl Rogers

We must embrace empathy as a marketing decision driver.

, and to find out what you think I am willing to listen. This is the half-step before empathy – identifying and selflessly caring.

By the term “heart” I mean actively listening to customers. “Listening” acknowledges that we our customers are complex human beings. Then, embracing empathy and allowing the empathy to become a decision driver.

When the odds say that you’ll never win

New ventures have a high mortality rate. Reboots have a habit of falling into old habits. We’ve learned, personally and professionally, to rely on vision and heart.

Vision and heart are the guiding principles of our company, 3 Giraffes. Vision to see where our clients are going and how to guide them there. Heart because at the end of the day, this is a people business that is won or lost on relationships.

We don’t ignore data, but we concentrate on building compelling competitive differentiation through a concentration on what is human. A data-centric perspective often obscures the complicated people we are dealing with, and the unique process they go through to make a decision.

That’s when your grin should start.

Who are you in your customers’ eyes? How can you communicate with empathy? How are you combining vision and heart in your go-to-market process? We’ve got 2 suggestions:

  1. Opt-in to our blog. We’ll send you thoughts, ideas and an occasional kick in the pants to get your going.

  2. Let’s talk. We’re willing to invest an hour in you, and maybe more. Let’s set it up.

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