Regardless of how many times I have fallen and managed to get up again, I amaze myself at just how much I still don’t know, and how much I have forgotten along the way.
Today’s lesson is one you can benefit from immediately. Learn from my oversight. It is the painless way to go.
The setting is a seminar room: the place where I have been making my living for the past 25 years when not waxing eloquent on the Big Stage.
After completing a well-rehearsed program, hopefully to the appreciation of a satisfied audience, speakers tune into their invisible “Applause-Meter.” The needle on this fictitious device decides how comfortable the plane-ride home will be. Yes, we have been known to beat ourselves up on more than one occasion after a mediocre demonstration of slapping one’s hands together.
In one particular instance I found myself departing the premises feeling more than just okay. I was feeling “good.” That is until the appraisal forms arrived a week and half later. Apparently, my applause meter required a small adjustment as it did not sync with the written word.
The categories of content, style, delivery, and relevance were all satisfactorily marked. There was no cause for alarm there. But the two items that referred to “questions” and “response to questions” made for one queasy stomach.
As they usually do the audience hit the nail right on the head. I had left no time for questions. There were no questions. I did not answer any questions. And the reason for this was because I did not solicit any questions.
An old sales lesson then popped into my head. Upfront, early in the relationship, find out what the client defines as a “home run.” Establish the criteria from which you will be judged. This is key. This is fundamental. This is basic procedure. But in my case it was overlooked and forgotten.
If I knew I was going to be judged on questions, or PowerPoint Slides, or the duration of a mid-program coffee break, it would have been easy to introduce these elements into my program and satisfy these requirements with a glowing response. (I skipped this step and paid the price, resulting in a less-than enjoyable afternoon.)
A very important sales lesson was reinforced that day. Define the “home run.” Then hit one. It is easy to do and the ball lies entirely in your court.
There is a second message in today’s missive. And that involves playing to the wrong audience. There is bound to be one or two people (clients) who refuse to be satisfied regardless of the effort you expend. See what you can learn from these people but continue to focus on the 98% of clients who enjoy working with you.
Mike Marchev freely shares his experiences, strategies and observations with travel professionals in an effort to keep them on top of their game. For a complimentary copy of his 12-Word Marketing Plan send him an email at email@example.com.
Mike Marchev’s next business building webinar is on Friday, October 26, 2018. It will focus on the 9 Selling Strategies you can implement at once at no cost with very little effort. Click Here for details.
Mike’s daily column is made possible by AmaWaterways.