In order to better understand this concept, I’d like to give you a few examples;
First case – if someone smokes, and they are more or less worried about their health, they will never see the serious reasons why they should quit smoking. They know well enough that their health is important, and that it would be a good idea to stop smoking, but they will never stop because their health is not a dominant preoccupation. However, if this same smoker suddenly learns from their doctor that if they don’t quit, they will only live for a few more months, you can be sure that they’ll quit, because it has suddenly become a dominant preoccupation. It goes without saying that this type of diagnostic usually arouses fear; the smoker will surely make every effort possible to eliminate this dominate preoccupation.
Second case – let’s take again the case of the smoker who is not ready to stop smoking, and is single. One of his latest obsessions is to find a suitable partner and possibly a wife. One fine day, he meets THE woman of his dreams, and it is love at first sight. But, as it turns out, the woman absolutely detests smoking and cigarettes. The fact the he is a heavy smoker has become a major stumbling block in the continuation of this long-awaited and much desired relationship, and his dominant preoccupation is to maintain the relationship with the woman of his dreams. Therefore, he will take the necessary action to stop smoking, temporarily if not permanently.
Third case – if you changed your car this year, it is normal that the acquisition of this new car is important and you can’t think of anything else. If however, your car lease is up at the end of the month, the closer the end is, the more you will be absorbed in your choice of what to do. If two days before the end of your lease you still haven’t decided what you’re going to do, or what kind of car you want, this choice becomes a dominant preoccupation and you have to take whatever measures are necessary in order to decide quickly, especially if you require a car for working.
What we can learn from these examples is that when someone takes action and makes a decision, it is mainly due to the fact that they have found the solution to a dominant preoccupation.
Imagine you sell software, and after a lengthy confidence-building discussion with a Client, you ask “In your company, what are the greatest preoccupations or challenges that you face?” He might answer “we want to reduce expenses because our profit margin has been reduced”, then you have put your finger on the dominant preoccupation of this individual, and his company. From that moment on, every characteristic of your product or service that you are offering must respond to this preoccupation.
Normally, there is more than one dominant preoccupation, and it’s your job to find them. When however a Client openly communicates it to you, your sale is almost assured.
I know that your product or service offers many benefits to your Clients, and that you want him to know of all the marvellous characteristics that it possesses. Take note though that your client couldn’t care less about your product or service, because the only thing that interests him is to resolve his or her dominant preoccupation. Therefore, STOP talking about the qualities of your product, and START talking about how the product or service will resolve or diminish his preoccupations. Your sales will increase considerably when you start selling in this manner.
Don’t take my word for it, try it for yourself.