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Do You Know The Language For Success?

How many languages do you know?


I personally know two languages – English and Maltese – or three if you count Australian as a separate language (we do have a lot of strange words like “crikey”).


But there is one very important language I have been learning my entire life … and that is the Language for Success.


I learned very early in my career that when it comes to engaging customers or staff it is important you choose your words carefully if you want to make an impact and successfully help them.


Your bank’s products, services and people management tools will not benefit your customers or colleagues without your guiding words.


Words matter!! The language we use will greatly contribute to our success … and the success of others.


As a Bank Leader, and now a Sales & Service Coach, I have always encouraged my team and my clients to develop a common sales language that will help them succeed.


In order to achieve greater success you must develop a sales language that is INCLUSIVE, INQUISITIVE, INFLUENTIAL and INSPIRATIONAL.


The easiest way to disengage a customer and make them feel alienated is to use bank jargon and technical terms they may not understand.


I encourage you to use inclusive language that demonstrates you are genuinely interested in helping them and building a long-term relationship.


Examples of inclusive language:

  • Referring to their name and other personal details
  • Acknowledging their concerns and challenges
  • Repeating specific words/terms they use to describe their needs
  • Describing your product/service benefits in relatable terms
  • Constantly confirming their understanding
  • Expressions of gratitude


Make your customers feel like part of your bank community. By using the customer’s language (not bank jargon) you will soon become part of their network of trusted advisers.


One of my favorite sales quotes is “no one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care“.


And the best way to demonstrate caring is by inquiring about your customer’s needs, challenges and goals.


The most successful bankers (sales people) show genuine interest in helping their customers by using inquisitive language and asking lots of incisive questions.


Successful bankers recognize that this is not prying or nosy – it is in fact beneficial to the customer as your questions uncover broader / deeper challenges and enable you to help your clients achieve greater success.


One of my other favorite sales quotes is “you are not a true success unless you are helping others be successful“.


And you can only truly help others if you know what they need help with by using inquisitive language.


Examples of inquisitive language:

  • Seeking permission to ask questions
  • Focusing your questions on their needs – not your bank products
  • Asking questions about their feelings
  • Demonstrating listening by taking notes
  • Repeating their specific answers back to them for confirmation
  • Thanking them for their answers

Our words have the power to influence people to take action. But not in a manipulative way. More so in a manner that influences them to make great decisions that will lead to a better quality of life.


Many bankers fail to achieve greater success because they try to sell products rather than offer solutions.


They simply describe features and benefits – hoping they will appeal to the customer. Instead, they should be confirming needs and only outlining specific solutions – influencing the customer to make a great decision.


To influence customers to make great decisions we must first build trust.


Robert Cialdini wrote a magnificent book about the power of influential language and how you can beneficially influence your client’s decision making – assuming you have great solutions that can genuinely help them. Click the following link to read about Cialdini’s Principles of Persuasion.


Examples of influential language:

  • Compliments and gratitude
  • Demonstrating knowledge by providing valuable advice
  • Sharing stories about other customers
  • Offering favors and extraordinary assistance
  • Only discussing solutions that match their needs
  • Confirming customer expectations and decision making process

Unsuccessful bankers make excuses and blame others for their lack of results. They stay within their comfort zone, resist learning new things and use inhibitive language.


Successful bankers constantly use inspirational language to motivate themselves and others to “dream more, learn more, do more and become more” {John Quincy Adams}.


Successful people don’t find excuses … they find a way. And inspirational self-talk or presentations are the key to helping themselves and others constantly find a way.


Examples of inspirational language:

  • Encouraging yourself and others to set goals
  • Coaching yourself and others to achieve your goals
  • Focusing on solutions rather than blame/excuses
  • Managing expectations rather than being “too busy”
  • Sharing stories about success (and failures)
  • Compliments and gratitude



The Language for Success helps bankers:

  • build relationships with customers (INCLUSIVE);
  • show genuine interest in helping their customers (INQUISITIVE);
  • guide their customers into making beneficial decisions (INFLUENTIAL); and
  • encourage their customers to become more successful (INSPIRATIONAL).


How well do you know this language and how often are you using it?


Choose and use your words wisely and confidently to achieve greater success for yourself and others.




Click the below video link to watch Joe Micallef share some advice on Inclusive Language.


In this 2 minute video, Joe will outline why it is important to replicate your customer’s language and not use jargon when offering solutions.



Article written by Joe Micallef – Sales Strategist & Coach – Grow UP Sales. For more advice on how to develop a language for success please email or visit the webpage

If you found the content valuable then please feel free to share this article with your broader network. Let’s help more bankers and sales people develop far more effective sales language.