The T-Shirt Boy

Many years ago, I visited Thailand – a wonderful country. The people are so friendly, the prices are reasonable, and the weather is great.
One evening I went to a little outdoor market where a small boy was selling t-shirts. He couldn’t have been more than 6 or 7 years old, but he was a fine little salesman. He was jabbering away in Thai to a couple of folks when I arrived and they both bought a t-shirt. Then there was a Japanese guy in front of me, and the little boy switched to Japanese – not good Japanese by any means, but he was able to say a few words – enough to get another sale.
When I came up, he saw my white face and he immediately switched into English.
“Hello Sir, how are you Sir. You like t-shirts, Sir?”
And within just a couple more minutes, he had sold me five t-shirts and given me this story and lesson free.

He was flexible – he could jump from one language to another to match the customer, and even if he only knew a few words, he was flexible enough to use his gestures to get the rest of the meaning across. That little kid could change his behavior to be flexible to sell just about anyone!

You could see that this little guy was thinking about how his current goal fit into the rest of his life. Selling a t-shirt meant getting money and that was a very good thing. Sure, he made mistakes in his communication, but he didn’t lose anything by making mistakes. In fact, it was an opportunity to improve his language skills, too!

He was in a good state. He clearly enjoyed selling those t-shirts and his face was wearing a beautiful smile throughout. Sure it was work – but he enjoyed it – he was relaxed and focused and in a good state.

And he had a very clear outcome had a clear goal of what he wanted – he wanted to sell t-shirts, as many t-shirts as possible and that outcome was in the front of his mind at all times.

The little kid was also paying very close attention to the reactions of his customers and potential customers. When the Japanese man looked away for a moment, that kid noticed and made sure that he changed his behavior to get his attention back again. And he seemed able to look in all directions for potential customers and somehow draw them in to his stand.

Finally, that kid was a do-er. He had decided that he wanted to sell t-shirts, and that is exactly what he was going to do, so he took the appropriate actions to sell those t-shirts.

©Copyright 2012 by Brian Cullen

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