Sales Presentations – You MUST Answer These 3 Questions

Have you ever been forced to sit through a sales presentation that was so boring you just wanted to scream? What made it boring? Was it the material presented? How it was presented? The tone of the presenter? All of these things combined?

Have you ever given a sales presentation that was fabulous? Or one that tanked? What qualities made them work or not?

There are two types of memorable presenters, the best and the worst. Everyone in between kind of gets forgotten. Personally, if I’m going to be remembered, I want to be remembered for being the best.

Sales professionals are in steep competition to win the business of a very discriminating consumer. They need to be sharp, articulate, informative and yes, entertaining to win the sale. But, there’s one more quality to being a great sales presenter. You must be persuasive. This might seem like a no-brainer, but I’ve sat through many a presentation where there was a lot of information given, but no persuasion. If you can’t tell your audience why they need your product at your price and now, you’re not closing. If you don’t close – guess what? Right. You don’t get the sale.

People generally have about a ten-minute attention span when being presented with new ideas. Generally grasping three new ideas or concepts is the limit; I suggest you build the foundation of your presentation n these three concepts:

o Why me?
o Why my product?
o Why now?

Can you see how answering these questions leads the customer to be persuaded without making the customer feeling pushed?

If you can answer these questions well, you will be giving a balance of information and persuasion. You will be starting to close the sale the moment you open your mouth and you will be able to give a clear call to action.

Is Negotiating More Like a Fool, Really Foolish? – Negotiation Tip of the Week

When negotiating, do you sometimes act foolishly? If so, are you embarrassed when that occurs?

Smart negotiators know they must employ sneaky ploys at times. Such includes acting foolishly if a situation is warranted.

The following are several scenarios in which you might invoke foolishness.

  1. Altering or changing the dynamics of the negotiation:

In any negotiation, you must be mindful of how any strategy you employ will play out. That means, you should have backups of your strategies (e.g. I’m not sure why I said/did that! Let’s get back on track (used when you did not get the response from the other negotiator that you sought). At a minimum, at that point, you’ve infused the negotiation with something for the opposing negotiator to think about. Thus, the ploy could have been implemented to alter his demeanor. If that was the case and his perspective was altered per the goal you sought to achieve, your ploy was successful.

  1. Altering the perspective of the other negotiator:

Have you ever talked to yourself? Everyone has done so at some point in time. A better question is, do you answer the questions you pose to yourself? It may sound silly, silly is as silly does, but you can openly talk to yourself during a negotiation by posing hypothetical questions out loud to discern the reaction you get from the other negotiator.

I did this once in a negotiation and after a while, the other negotiator started addressing my hypothetical questions. That gave me insight into two facts. One, I was leading him (When you lead someone in a negotiation, they acquiesce to your suggestions). Two, he was giving me insight as to how he would respond if the questions weren’t hypothetical.

  1. Acting the Clown:

I recall one negotiation I was in that had become very dire. Neither I nor the other negotiator wanted to make additional concessions because both of us thought that would give way to the other negotiator gaining the upper hand. At one point, I stated, somewhat loud, let’s get silly! With that, I bent under the table and put on a red clown nose. When I reappeared, the other negotiator burst out laughing. After that, we reengaged in the negotiation with him saying, “If you’re not afraid of being silly, you can’t be that bad.” Whenever that gentleman and I see one another, we still laugh about that time.

What can you do to break the monotony when you reach impasses in your negotiations? Seriously, it’s something you should consider before entering into a negotiation. By considering such, you can be prepared with the props needed/required to alter the pace of the negotiation and the mindset of the other negotiator. After all, people that are perceived as having a sense of humor are also perceived to be more human, more down to earth.

When engaged in a negotiation, especially one that may be fraught with tension and anxiety, consider how you can alter the negotiation to alter the environment. Acting foolish is one way that you can do it. If used at the right time, you’ll change the dynamics of the negotiation which could lead to a more successful negotiation outcome… and everything will be right with the world.

Remember, you’re always negotiating.

#HowToNegotiateBetter #CSuite

Business Presentations – The Consultant’s Guide to Quickly Building Effective Seminars

As a management consultant I average about 70-80 seminars per year. In nearly all of them I’m trying to teach information. Until I stumbled across the secret formula for feeding information to my customers’ brains my ratings were poor. Now I know how the pro’s do it, I regularly score 10/10. Read on to find out how you can too.

About five years ago I almost gave up presenting. I’d been asked to run a seminar for a large potential client. I spent two days preparing only to find that had I been reading them the phone book I could have got a better response.

I was depressed. I had no idea how to plan a seminar much less present it so that I engaged my audience. By luck I stumbled across the work of David Kolb, author of 1984 book, Experiential Learning: Experience As The Source Of Learning And Development’.

Kolb explains that there are four types of learners.

1. Those that that need to know “why” something is worth learning.
2. Those that need to know “what” it’s about, i.e. background and theory on the topic.
3. Those that need to know “how”, it’s done this group wants the step by step process.
4. Those that need to know “what if”, i.e. what can they do with this information.

This model, literally, changed my life. Once I knew how to apply it, seminar planning became a breeze, my seminar ratings went through the roof, I felt on complete control when I ran a seminar, but most importantly I was making a difference to my audience because I was helping them learn.

To apply the model to building and running a seminar simply take your topic and then apply each of the headings e.g. if your topic is managing change you do the following:

“Why is managing change necessary?” “If you learn the process for managing change you’ll be able to turn around failing companies fast, you’ll save your clients time and money”

“What is managing change?” “It originates from the early 1900s, The days of Henry Ford and Afred Sloan. The objective is to guide a sick company back to full health.”

“How do I do it?” “Managing change is a three step process, it starts with analysing the business, building a plan for change, and testing your hypothesis. Then the cycle repeats.”

“What can I do If I learn to manage change” “The obvious application is to turn around ailing businesses, do it right and you can help lots of employees keep their jobs.

All you need to do now is spice up the “what section” with a case study or example and you have a complete segment for running a seminar.

Put three of those segments together, call it a module. Build five modules and you have a full day’s course. Once you’ve done this a few times the process will be hardwired in your brain and you’ll be able to do it easily at speed.