Thursday, November 8, 2012

Richard Branson: how to pitch in 5 steps

By Jack Preston - nov. 07, 2012 As any budding entrepreneur will know, pitching your ideas can be a nerve-racking process. Even business greats such as Richard Branson found the skill a hard one to come by, as a child Branson greatly struggled with shyness. There aren’t many obstacles that can’t be overcome with hard work however, recognising this Forbes has put together five tips for the perfect pitch. The Virgin Group Founder relies on five key elements when presenting ideas: 1. What’s in it for them? “Occasionally, an entrepreneur hoping to launch their first business puts so much thought into the concept that he or she neglects the financial and legal plan—and unfortunately, this often becomes apparent early in a meeting, when an investor can lack clarity in what exactly the proposed deal is going to look like.” 2. Be clear. “Winning the trust of an investor means demonstrating a thorough knowledge of your concept or industry and laying out a step-by-step plan for offering something that’s new, innovative and will deliver healthy returns on their investment.” 3. Demonstrate smart disruption. “Emphatically explain how your new company will give your customers a better deal than your competitors.” 4. Plan for sustainable growth. “Nothing stays the same for long, so explain how you plan to tackle the inevitable technological changes and market shifts that are heading your way.” 5. Show them your strengths. “Show prospective investors that you have found the right people to work at your new company.” What’s your top tip for pitching? Let us know below… By Jack Preston. Content & Marketing Executive. Tweets at @JackPressedOn

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Being Relentless (when targets are tough)

If you receive your target for the new sales year, the next quarter, your next goal, when have you ever hit it out of the park after saying "I'll try"?

Saying "I'll try" is the single worst thing you can do for yourself when you're in sales.
It means you've allowed yourself to fail.

In those three words, you have accepted failure as an option and therefore the bar you've set is either too high, and you KNOW you're going to fail but don't want to admit or say so, OR you have no confidence in yourself with regard to the task.

Either way: it's not good.

So what to do?
In motivation, half quoting Anthony Robbins, the potential shapes your actions which in turn deliver results that shape your belief system, which in turn shape your future actions, because they influence your expectance of your potential going forward. (see figure)

If the bar is to high, try too determine why you think that is the case.
If you've received a quota, or you've given yourself one that is double the single best sales performance in the company's history, you know it will be near impossible to achieve that goal.
Even if you peak and achieve 90% of that, you will still hurt your own confidence for not hitting the target, regardless of it being a stellar performance. Find one that is challenging yet achievable. So that you know that you can actually celebrate hitting your milestone within a reasonable amount of time IF you go at it relentlessly.

If you think the bar is too high because your past sales just don't add up to attaining that next level, consider this:
If you were a 1,5 year old learning to walk and you were thinking only of past results, chances are that you'd never try again and you would not learn to walk.

We all know this is not what kids do. They look at what's possible. They have plenty of examples nearby of people doing what they're attempting to do. If you're not the #1 on the sales performance list, you have your example of what's possible. Copy, try, fail, try again, and again and again. Think about that 1,5 year old that is relentlessly trying to make it happen. The child is not thinking about how much it would hurt if it would fall. It's remotely thinking about how cool it would be to run, but it's not attempting to run, it's trying to learn to walk first.

The child is not thinking about 'trying to make it happen'. It's making it happen! But realize that making it happen comes with falling... and with getting up another to time. SO: Learn from your mistakes and do better next time.

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of...insanity.
So: if you're doing the same things over and over again, yet you're expecting the results to be much better, or absurdly high: think again. Learning means adapting, perfecting, changing, improving.
It means you're consciously doing what you're doing, analyzing what you're doing and constantly trying to improve. Only then, you will hit it out of the park.

If you catch yourself saying or thinking: "I'll try", remember the 1,5 year old that is RELENTLESSLY making it happen. It is not considering failure as an option.

Happy Selling!
PS Have you signed up with our Salesguru group on LinkedIn yet?
Over 600 members, sales professionals and sales managers/directors from various countries have signed up already. Share thoughts, jobs, ask questions, or, at the very least: increase your network.
Let us know what you think!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Resourcefulness versus Resources

Check out this amazing video by Tony Robbins about the invisible factors that influence and shape success: