Welcome to the space between — with Renn Vara

When you catch The Wizard of Silicon Valley at Sales Confidence, you know you’re in for something special.

Back in February, Sales Confidence staged another one of its exclusive events for sales leaders, at the Andaz Hotel in Liverpool Street. As always, we were treated to deep insights from a world-class line-up. Based on these talks, we put together some articles, so even if you couldn’t be there, you can still get inspired.

Renn Vara

Renn Vara’s official title is Cofounder of SNP Communications, but that doesn’t really tell the whole story. For more than 25 years, Renn has worked with Silicon Valley founders on leadership development, startup cultures, team-building and communication structures. You name them, Renn has worked with them: Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook, Brian Chesky at Airbnb, Mark Benioff at Salesforce, the Google founders and many more.

At Sales Confidence, we’re always thrilled when Renn comes and speaks for us. He spoke at both SaaSGrowth events and now at our sales leaders event. We also came up with the nickname ‘The Wizard of Silicon Valley’, which I gather has spread around the world!

The space between

Anyway, Renn wanted to talk to us about something a bit different: the space between.

‘I read a little book called The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli. It’s about quantum mechanics. Here’s what they tell you. The chair you’re sitting in is actually not real. The stage isn’t real. Nothing in this room is real. We’re not even real.’

‘Nothing is real until you engage with it. You [sales leaders] live in the engagement, right? You live in the only thing that’s real. As leaders, the space that’s real is the space between.’

Navigating the space

I told you it was going to be a bit different!

It’s true though. As a sales leader, if nobody is engaging with us, what are we really doing?

So, the question is, how can we drive more and better engagement? How can we spend more time with what’s real?

Renn recommends focusing on three things:

· Empathy

· Understanding

· Clarity

‘Learn how to empathise with others. Learn how to truly listen: not pretend, not hearing what you want to hear so you can sell to them. Then, get your message totally buttoned up.’

Better sales. Better life

Renn went on to say that these aren’t only skills that will help you do better in your sales career. They’re essential for a better life. When you improve your ability to communicate, you find fulfilment in yourself. At times when things aren’t going so well, it can be a healing medicine.

Let’s give Renn the final word.

‘The favour I’m going to ask of you is from now on, now that you know what I do is quantum mechanics, Newton, Aristotle and Einstein, don’t ever call that space between ‘soft skills’ again! Cool?’

Over to you

Thanks to Renn Vara for that fantastic talk. Now, we want to know what you think.

What skills do you employ to communicate better, in sales and in life?

Let us know with a comment below.