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The Platinum Rule: Discover the Four Basic Business Personalities and How They Can Lead You to Success Paperback – February 1, 1998

4.5 out of 5 stars 72 ratings

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About the Author

Dr. Tony Alessandra helps companies build customers, relationships, and the bottom line. Companies learn how to achieve market dominance through specific strategies designed to outmarket, outsell, and outservice the competition. Dr. Alessandra has a street-wise, college-smart perspective on business, having fought his way out of NYC to eventually realize success as a graduate professor of marketing, entrepreneur, business author, and keynote speaker. He earned his MBA from the University of Connecticut – and his PhD in marketing from Georgia State University. Dr. Alessandra is president of Online Assessments, a company that offers online multi-rater assessments and tests; co-founder of MentorU.com, an online e-learning company; and Chairman of the Board of BrainX, a company that offers online digital accelerated-learning programs. Dr. Alessandra is a widely-published author with 14 books translated into 17 foreign languages, including Charisma; The Platinum Rule; Collaborative Selling ; and Communicating at Work . He is featured in over 50 audio/video programs and films, including Relationship Strategies (American Media); The Dynamics of Effective Listening (Nightingale-Conant); and Non-Manipulative Selling (Walt Disney). Recognized by Meetings & Conventions Magazine as “one of America’s most electrifying speakers,” Dr. Alessandra was inducted into the Speakers Hall of Fame in 1985, and is a member of the Speakers Roundtable, a group of 20 of the world’s top professional speakers. Tony's polished style, powerful message, and proven ability as a consummate business strategist consistently earns rave reviews.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Introduction

"HAS THE GOLDEN RULE LOST ITS GLITTER?"

You're such a terrific salesperson you could probably sell a stethoscope to a tree surgeon. But from the moment you greet this prospective client, it's obvious he doesn't like you, isn't about to like you, and wouldn't do a deal with you if you were giving the product away.

The conference is packed; you don't know a soul. But then you bump into a stranger and--wow!--it's as if you've been friends forever. Everything that's said and done meshes magically.

As manager, you're fired up about the new program and eager to inspire your employees. You call them in one by one and give them the same lively motivational pitch that so excited you. But you're astonished when their reactions vary from enthusiastic to tepid to hostile.

Personality differences!

They're our boon and our bane. They're what makes life so rich and fascinating--and often so frustrating, too. Especially at work, where teamwork and motivation are pivotal.

Most of us never figure people out. We just ricochet through life. We get along great with some people, refuse to deal with others, or deal as little as possible with still others, because they're so--well, different--from us. But what if you knew the secret of those differences? What if there was a simple, but proven, way to build rapport with everyone? To eliminate personality conflicts? To take charge of your own compatibility? To make business mutually beneficial instead of a contest of wills?

You literally hold such a key in your hands. A product of psychological research and practical application, The Platinum Rule is a proven method of connecting with anyone in the workplace. It's fun, easy to use, and helpful to anyone who's curious about what makes themselves and others tick.

You can learn to handle people the way those people want to be handled...to speak to them in the way they are comfortable listening...to sell to people the way they like to buy...to lead people in ways that are comfortable for them to follow.

In business, especially, people all too often create tension and discomfort by assuming we're all pretty much alike. In fact, most of us, if asked about a philosophy of personal relations, probably would recall The Golden Rule which we learned as kids: "Do Unto Others As You Would Have Them Do Unto You."

The Downside of The Golden Rule

That's an old and honorable sentiment. A lot of good has been done in the world by people practicing The Golden Rule. As a guide to personal values, it can be a powerful force for honesty and compassion. But as a yardstick for communication, The Golden Rule has a downside.

If applied verbatim, it can backfire and actually cause personality conflicts. Why? Because literally following The Golden Rule--treating people the way you'd like to be treated--means dealing with others from your own perspective. It implies that we're all alike, that what I want and need is exactly what you want and need. But, of course, we're not all alike. And treating others that way can mean turning off those who have different needs, desires, and hopes.

Instead, we suggest honoring the real intent of The Golden Rule by modifying that ancient axiom just a bit. We think the secret to better rela that may be unfair to the individual and uses unrealistic shortcuts to appreciating unique human beings.

But understanding someone's behavioral style isn't mutually exclusive with getting to genuinely know them. Far from it. In fact, using The Platinum Rule can greatly accelerate that process. If you can quickly pick up on another person's needs-based cues and adapt your own behavior, you'll learn to more genuinely value others. You'll see that their needs are just as valid as yours, and you can, if you choose, seek to meet those desires and forge a deeper relationship.

Throughout this book you'll also see that we urge you to improve your listening skills--and give pointers on how to do so. Good listening enriches relationships and in tandem with The Platinum Rule, can help build lasting rapport that is anything but superficial.

Not Manipulation

Another important point: When we talk about using The Platinum Rule, we're not talking about manipulating people! But, rather, learning, in a way, to speak their language.

It isn't, for example, considered manipulative to speak French when in Paris. Au contraire. It's something you do briefly while on the Frenchman's soil so you can be more compatible. You don't alter your basic nature while in France. Your ideas don't change. But how you present those ideas does change.

Similarly, practicing The Platinum Rule doesn't fundamentally change you or the other person. It empowers you by making you, in a sense, multi-lingual. Knowing how to listen and speak in the "language" of those around you is a delightful, useful tool that can be used to resolve differences, maximize strengths, and enjoy a fuller, more successful life by better understanding yourself and the people around you.


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