A little bit about me…

I am a woman who loves life. I adore reading, writing and learning about anything related to human nature and evolutionary leadership. I got married when I was very young – 17 – had my wonderful son and daughter, and, to make a long story short, god divorced when I was still very young: 25. At that time, my kids were 6 and 2 years old, I suddenly found myself alone – my ex husband literally disappeared from scene – broke and jobless. Back then I really had no time to get depressed though; I found myself too busy figuring out how to feed by kids, find a place to live, raise them and move on with our lives. My parents were living far away and the rest of the family did not seem to be ready to offer a hand. There were times I just wanted to stop living, but my kids were my beacons, the forces I needed to trust that everything would be all right…
So right after divorce, one morning I took my kids by the hand and went to the local center where all retailers block together and offered myself to make things like: organizing stock and exhibited goods, re-arranging displays, wrapping up gift packages (Christmas time was near), etc. I got my first client that very day and my kids and I lived under tons of paper and ribbons and bottles and boxes for many months to come…my eldest son still remembers the joy of helping me with every order.
Those were – without being conscious about it – my first steps towards Excellence Customer Service. I will not bother you more with my story, I know there are plenty of people who have gone through great pain and have learnt to take the best out of them rather than the worst, to survive. But to summarize my experience, I started working for an international Bank a couple of years later – my first formal job – and from then on, I started my career in Sales and Customer Service. Have been working for the corporate arena of luxury brands for more than 25 years. Two of my best clients throughout the years told me once: “Mónica, you should work on your own, and help companies and salespeople work like you, because you are an Excellence Expert” I said to myself at that time: “Wow!! These guys are crazy…too important a title for me” – But you know what…I am an Excellence Expert…I have always been. Because I have lived choosing Excellence every time, no matter what, in my personal and working life. I made little, medium size and huge mistakes but learnt hot to take responsibility for them and say “I am sorry” when necessary.
This is just only part of my life, because God has shown me so many miracles along my journey…One of them, probably the most outstanding and challenging one was to survive a car accident with my family back in 1994. That was a true miracle and I know, deep inside of me, that God´s army of angels descended upon the highway where the accident took place and gracefully allowed us to survive, get minimum injures, get recovered in a relatively short period of time and move on with our lives… God granted us a second chance to enjoy life, to do whatever it takes to craft the best version of Ourselves while experiencing our enormous blessings. Now time has come for me to gladly accept the title my clients so kindly gave me years ago, and plan to do business teaching about Excellence Customer Service strategies around the World while helping people understand the value of their precious, unbelievable and glorious life…

Crafting a Customer Database: Have Fun with It !

Check out my new article on how to craft your customer database and enjoy the process…
Crafting your customers database: pleasure & fun guaranteed.

What do luxury clients demand today?

This is a very interesting article about what luxury companies should be addressing throughout the year…surprising luxury customers with Excellence.

When the number of Stars is not enough…

Emotional Marketing: Three Steps to Surprise Your Clients

Hope this article helps you get closer to your best asset: your relationship with clients! http://jewelrynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/

Three Language Secrets To Improve Your Sales Results

Language is one of the most important means of communication. Words are vital components of language, and so are gestures, looks, movements, sounds, art, music, and of course, silence. (Many people feel uncomfortable with silence, yet, it is such a remarkable excellent tool both in life and in sales!)

As effective communicators, we sales people need to be aware of our messages: sometimes “unwanted” words and gestures come up, and fluid communication becomes somewhat difficult. That is why it is so important to think how we are going to use words with clients before actually being with them. Rehearsing some language secrets in advance will turn your communication into a more fluent, transient, and empowering experience for your clients.

Secret Number One: Avoid Labeling

Broadly speaking, when we openly or mentally label a situation, a person, a feature of ourselves – whatever – it is always with a negative connotation which tends to limit possible different ways to keep on growing, specially in the sales arena, just because labeling is a means to narrow our minds and has the effect to “filter in” only the information that will serve as “consistent evidence” that back-up the labels we created. You need to remember that our mind is sometimes tricky: you cannot trust it very much, it may lead you to make big mistakes!

So, in order to avoid labeling, every time you have a tendency to judge, simply act as a judge instead, :use language to reason, ask yourself: “What is the real evidence I count on to make such an assumption about this…person, situation, myself, whatever?” “What questions could I make in order to learn more about this and check if I am making a sound conclusion or a stupid one? “Why do I post this “identity label” to myself and keep it in my mind when it does not help me in my work – and life – at all? What is it I need to say or do differently in order to produce the outcomes I desire?

To help you adopt good self- criticism, just refer to you ( the situation, the other person – whatever ) in a positive, enquiring manner: “I am such a great salesperson! Isn´t it great I am able to improve my performance by learning new language strategies?” “She is a very reserved and quiet client, what could I say to her (or what words would I choose ) to open up the dialogue without sounding pushy or invasive given her reluctance to speak?

Note that whenever I get you through this column, I reinforce the idea of making lots of open questions everyday, all day long. They are really helpful and have the advantage of erasing all psychological “stick ability” to labeling.

Secret Language Number Two: Use Tag Questions

This is such a simple, wonderful and effective technique! Isn´t it? You will find it very useful, especially when you have established good rapport with clients. Question Tags are known as “positive change facilitators” in Neurolinguistics because they reinforce “buy-in” behaviors. You can even apply them to reinforce the client´s “mood” of the moment: “ You know Ms. XX, I truly believe you are going to enjoy this beautiful ring for many years to come and in plenty of occasions, don´t you agree?

I am pretty sure once you start noticing how helpful this tool is in getting results, and once you feel comfortable expressing question tags, you will feel encouraged to use it more in your daily working routine, won´t you?

Secret Language Number Three: Neutralize objections with “And…”

Your clients will come up with thousands of diverse objections rather than price or payment. They will tell you even interesting things about family matters if they have in mind to get you up in their roller coaster of “not being sure” or “not being ready” to purchase. We know that, and certainly we expect that. After all, it is in the very core of human nature to struggle a bit before closing a deal, just because…

Therefore, when a client posts an objection and he/she says something like: “ I am really scared to make this step” , you take a few seconds and magnetize your suggestion: “I understand Mr XX…AND that means you are someone conscious about your important choices…Plus, fear is part of human nature, isn´t it?</span> Although I am sure you will agree that our best decisions come associated with a little bit of fear, just because it is an ingredient of getting everything is worth having, don´t you think so?</span>”

As professional salespeople in the luxury market we have today what I believe is an un-precedent historical opportunity to take advantage of the person-to-person interaction: you can harness language tools and use them purposefully in the direction of positive change, whether it is closing a sale or coming to an agreement.

Make the effort: study these secrets a little bit further and apply them right away, they will help you go beyond your imagination, and sales goals.

Note: this article has been published in Jewelry News Network , USA – January 11, 2012

Mónica M. Arias

Excellence Expert & Consultant: Helping you discover how to reach your next level through excellence.


Copyright 2011

Let´s Rock & Gold!

Gold has, as we all know, a story, legacy and beauty of its own that managed to survive throughout the ages and whose mystery is still displaying its hottest genuine value by becoming the number one investors´preference worldwide.
At the same time, our beloved Earth has also been gracefully producing beautiful and valuable rocks (diamonds, gemstones, precious stones, etc) over and over again since ancient times for us to appreciate and admire.
The moment jewelry makers discovered the art of joining both together, they set the foundations for a fantastic and alluring business-to-come as if declaring: “Let´s rock and gold!” long before Elvis had ever existed.

Why is gold combined with stones so appealing?
Many a jewelry firm have no conclusive answer to this question. Generally speaking, rocks and gold simply “look” fantastic together. The simplest set of earrings can make all the difference if designed elegantly, respecting a true balance between the metal and the stones involved.

But this is too simple a statement to explain why we crave for beautiful gold and stone pieces because we are leaving aside the main elements to this gold and rock combination success: As in the movement once presided by Elvis, the revolution of Rock & Gold is directly associated with intense colors. Magic comes out of brilliant colors in full vibrancy of grades which produce the attached fascination that comes from choosing a jewel we love.

Jusf for the sake of giving an example of what I mean, let´s take rubies, for instance. According to many experts in the jewelry industry worldwide, rubies, which mainly come from Burma in Myanmar and Thailand, are considered to be the most powerful gems in the Universe, usually associated with astral signs and protection to the living. Its magical influence is associated with life force, passion, and love. It is been said that to own a ruby is to have contentment and peace and, last but not least, when rubies are set in gold they are also considered the symbol of vitality and royalty.
However, what is even more striking and fascinating about rubies is its wide range of color which varies from slightly vermilion to intense red, the most desired and valuable being the famous “pigeon´s blood” intense tone.
So, isn´t it amazing to have such a wonderful description of meanings and features to help us make the most appropriate connection with the piece we would love to carry ? Now, placing the question from the sales point of view: Wouldn´t you agree that you could literally add value to your demonstration if your customer showed a certain inclination to one of these features in particular? Absolutely!
Whenever possible, do yourself a favor: next time you are in front of a client, try to Rock & Gold a bit before making any demonstration. (I mean, seriously, make the effort to express your true passion for rock & gold, please!)

Ask him/her as many open questions about them as you can (see, the “open question parade” appears in almost all my articles, I insist so much because it is the key to open your best results). Then begin working toward influencing what you have perceived are their preferences by associating the exact feature of the piece which will make the strongest impact in your customer´s perception. Trust me: the rock and gold tactic will help you “see through” your customer’s real passion about a particular piece and you will celebrate a long-term “sales bliss” after having investigated further on Rock & Gold and its infinite benefits. And don´t worry about Elvis…from wherever he is, I am sure he´ll show thumbs up!

Nota: Este artículo fue publicado en Jewelry News Network – USA

Mónica M. Arias
Excellence Consultant: Helping you discover how to reach your next level through excellence.
copyright: Mónica M. Arias

Elizabeth Taylor Jewelry Auction by Christie´s December 2011

Check my list of entries out on the right !
Amazing first two-day Auction of Elizabeth Taylor´s jewelry collection by Christie´s in New York!
Enjoy !