Programming is giving a set of instructions to a computer.

Programming is the act of deciding what to put on TV at what time.

Programming is another word for brainwashing.

In the modern world, all of those can go hand-in-hand.

Computer programming can be used alongside fake social media accounts to create agreement amongst a population by contriving a false social proof of agreement with an ideology or set of facts.

TV programming can set the mood of culture in a nation.

Together, those two can lead to what we consider “brainwashing”. That obviously has a negative connotation to it, but is that an objective reality?

When there was 3 channels on TV and only a handful of people chose the shows that all of America watched, there was a shared culture. Was that “brainwashing” in the same connotation we usually think of it?

In fact, what we have today is actually the opposite of “brainwashing”. We have individualism and choice of programming, which leads into the largest divestiture of thoughts and ideas the world has likely ever seen before. While meanwhile, many think someone external group is “brainwashing” everybody. Turns out, if you give an animal a button that feeds him a certain treat he likes, most will press it over and over again. Yet, the possibility that people are being brainwashed by an external force continues, while instead it is their own overconsumption of ideas.

If you apply this concept to sales, someone might ask you for something they think they need, but it’s never a bad idea to reset the assumptions and question some beliefs. Perhaps you can show them some regularly scheduled programming that frames their problems better. It’s highly possible they’ve been going down the same set of choices for a while, someone to challenge that once in a while isn’t a bad thing. The most important part? Don’t have too big of an ask.