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Curtain Call Combining selling and acting techniques will leave your customers cheering for more.

By Danielle Kennedy

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Until recently, I didn't fully appreciate the connectionbetween selling and acting. Then this past summer I played the roleof Dorothea in Lee Blessing's play "Eleemosynary" atthe Liberty Theatre in Hailey, Idaho.

The director believed in "living," as opposed to"acting," in front of an audience. He instructed us tofind the truth in the dialogue, the task or the interactionrequired. Once we found that private truth and communicated it toeach other, we didn't have to worry about impressing or playingto an audience. They would see truth in our presence, and thatwould lure them into our world. He showed us that good actingisn't acting at all but rather living in front of the publicwith no self-consciousness.

That reminded me of how I learned to sell. Selling, like acting,has always been a discovery process for me--and should be for anybusiness owner. Good actors learn to "live" naturally infront of audiences. Good salespeople learn to "share"naturally in front of customers.

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