Should Diversity Include Unique Thinking?

Left-Handedness: Obstacle Or Advantage?

Today’s conversation misses the question, should diversity include unique thinking?  Adding to the topic, an article concerning left-handedness leads me to wonder how many people embrace atypical thinking and behavior?

Sam Fortier, a contributor to The Washington Post, asks, ‘Why aren’t there any left-handed quarterbacks in the NFL?’ According to Matt Leinert, a former lefty quarterback states his kind is an extinct species.     

I’m one who is left-handed and instantly connected the sports news to business and career. It is curious why so many consider the left-handed population as odd.  The alternative is to view the sector as contributing to diversity while providing unique thinking. The idea is worthy of consideration.   

Those of us who differ in some unique way, generally have challenges in our youth.  Hearing scorn from others was the norm. At the same time, we toughen up.  The lessons we learn provide greater motivation to succeed. Ultimately, we have the advantage of knowing how to navigate moving forward.   

A sales career taught me that uniqueness translates to our personal brand.  When we put our stamp on how we uniquely perform, we attract an audience and clientele to our liking. I have fond remembrances of my previous clients anointing me as A breath of fresh air!’ 


Unique Approaches for Gaining Appointments

  • Offer a meal outside, or bring coffee and a sweet to the office
  • Treat guards, secretaries, and those in the basement with the utmost respect
  • Send funny greeting cards in the mail
  • Ask about the prospect’s vacation, experience and background, first
  • At the end of the meeting, I asked if they would like me to return  


Traditional sales training says we need five buy-ins to make the sale. Buy-in questions sprinkled throughout the meeting indicate whether the sale will be possible. By asking if the person would like me to return, laughter followed.  A solid Yes! became mine.    

In the age of caring about diversity, left-handedness is another topic to take into serious consideration.  Imagine the collaborative ideas forming at team meetings and in the executive suite upon employing both right and left-handed people.   


Are You Willing to Embrace Diversity and Unique Thinking?  

Self-talk is part of the process for moving forward.  Come to terms with what is on your mind and what you wish to accomplish.    Consider these questions in your quiet time:

  1. The critiques you most frequently hear
  2. How can I turn the criticism into my advantage
  3. What will an edge do for my career?   Now, begin drafting a new business-career plan.  As you write out the latest, recognize if you feel a tinge of excitement.  A smile and extra energy will motivate you to try the original approach.   


When to Share Unique Thinking  

The better time to share is when you know that you will be moving forward with new strategies.  In addition to the nerve-wracking trial and error component of trying the latest, you may need to learn to deal with the criticism.   

If you are comfortable sharing a new idea, do so with trusted peers.  The value of sharing with like-minded people is that you automatically begin a brain-storming session.  Valuable insights pop up that might otherwise not come to mind. Additionally, a collaborative effort may be in the making.   


As dong the unusual becomes routine, you may realize that possibly left-handed people are not so different.  Instead, the creative ideas are an asset for growing business and furthering your career.   


Sales Tips: Should Diversity Include Unique Thinking  

  1. Welcome left-handed people to your team      
  2. Encourage open discussions among all members
  3. Ask questions when unusual ideas arise
  4. Consider how you may use components of the unique approach      
  5. Host a team event with a meal included encouraging relaxed conversations
  6. The openness and willingness to hear from everyone produces a better team effort all-around  
  7. Track the progress after adding left-handed people to your team      
  8. Ask the team for further ideas to build cohesiveness and clientele      
  9. Give praise wherever possible
  10. Celebrate Success! 

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