Sellers from Mars and Buyers from Venus - VII

Excerpt from my upcoming book at - "Sellers from Mars and Buyers from Venus - Elements of Nature Meet B2B Sales" 

How to apply the framework of elements on a stakeholder for persona mapping  

The first step is to identify the key elements representing their human traits to apply this framework to any individual. Out of the five elements, a primary and a secondary element plays a vital role in shaping our personality and appearance. Let's apply this framework of creation and destruction of five elements and their elemental attributes with few examples to identify primary and secondary elements.

Steve Jobs

Steven Paul Jobs was an American business magnate, industrial designer, investor, and media proprietor. He was the chairman, chief executive officer (CEO), and co-founder of Apple Inc. Steve is widely recognised as a pioneer of the personal computer and smartphone revolutions.


The following characteristics indicate that Space (Metal) element as primary:
  • had a muscular body but in the latter part of life became slim because of illness
  • his face was oval-shaped
  • had lined lower cheeks, and 
  • had wide space between features

The following characteristics suggest that the Fire element is secondary:
  • had a pointy nose, and 
  • had long hair in his youth and later on became partly bald with a receding hairline

Engagement, Communication, Clothing

Space (Metal) attributes are evident in the following behaviours 
  • was self-made and was always keen on the big picture
  • was emotionless (even left his daughter)
  • loved designer clothes and expensive items (he built his own luxury yacht)
  • was meticulously neat and tidy (apple stores, new apple head office, practised the philosophy of minimalism at home and work)
  • was a perfectionist (iPhone and iPad), logical in thinking
  • highly critical (openly criticised Adobes Flash for crashing ios devices and mac), and
  • his email responses were concise and minimal (he used to respond to customer queries from his iPhone with 1-2 lines of text only)

The following supplementary behaviours suggest Fire is the secondary element 
  • he loved new beginnings
  • was fond of public speaking and putting a show (apple events) 
  • driven by action (spent long hours and weekends at work)
  • was inspirational and always promoted the ideas of doing something real, inspiring uni students with his talks
  • brought money with him (he started as a salesman and became one of the best salesmen), and 
  • lacked boundaries and was impulsive (was widely know to shout at staff if they didn't meet his very high standards) 
  • righteousness (lost his cool and criticised Eric Schmidt for copying Apple design by Googles Android)


By analysing the appearance, engagement, communication and clothing style of Steve Jobs, it is evident that his primary element was Space (Metal), and the second element was Fire. His tertiary element could be attributed to Air.

In terms of his engagement with others, his primary element, Space (Metal), meant that he found it hard to work with people having Air and Fire as their primary element because Air and Fire are in a non-parental child relationship with Space (Metal). People with Earth and Water as their primary element would have worked well with him as these two elements are in a parent-child relationship with Space (Metal). Giving way to harmony prevailing among them.

Image Credit: Wikipedia

Next: Coming up 

  • Cheat Sheet for Sales Planning and Execution using Five Elements   
  • How a Procurement Executive will Engage
  • How B2B Sales are different in Service vs Product 
Previous articles can be read here
  • Part 6 on How to apply elements framework on a Legal Service Counsel can be read here 
  • Part 5 on How a Marketing Manager will engage can be read here
  • Part 4 on How a Sponsoring Executive will engage can be read here
  • Part 3 on Negotiation Styles in B2B Sales can be read here 
  • Part 2 on Persona Mapping in B2B Sales can be read here 
  • Part 1 on Marrying Elements of Nature with B2B Sales can be read here