Do You Want to Save Children with Cancer?

A few months ago I was nearing the end of a U.S. trip and got caught in a New York downpour. You know, one of those can’t catch a cab NYC days. I popped in to the closest department store to purchase an umbrella, and saw they had a charity campaign where you purchased some kind of item (it may have been a jack-o-lantern, given the time of year) to write your name on and stick on the wall in store. The cost of the item, 1 to 2 dollars, goes to the charity. These campaigns are not unfamiliar to me, and I probably say yes about 80% of the times when a sales assistant asks if I want to buy them. This likely would have been one of the days I’d have said no (soaking wet, near the end of a trip so running low on funds, annoyed at having to buy a $10 umbrella that I wouldn't be bringing back to Australia) but the sales assistant asked me in a way it was impossible to refuse.

Do you want to save children with cancer?

She stopped me in my tracks. 

What could I say – no, no I don’t want to help children with cancer.

This woman could sell ice to the Eskimos (or Inuk if you prefer). This is how you sell, you make someone an offer that they literally can’t refuse.