Working with Decision-makers: Being a Trusted Advisor in a Time of Rapid Change

Stephen Abram President, Canadian Library Association Vice President, Innovation, Sirsi Corporation CASLIS Toronto Nov. 1, 2004

Review Steve Denning’s slides at the URL below and buy the book!

Selling Principles
 Selling is about People not products  Selling is a Journey not an event  Sustainable selling is about Attitude more than Aptitude  Selling is Situational  Selling is a learned professional skill there’s no such thing as a “natural”

Who will you sell to?
    Influencers Decision-makers Money people Teams

Build your Sales “Funnel”

Ways you can sell . . .
• • • • • • • Complex Sales Model Simple Sales Model Commodity Sales End-User Selling Wholesale Selling Retail Selling Consultative Selling

Information Engagement Levels
Stimulate/Live Present/Teach Argue/Defend Act on/ Discuss Read/View
Content, Source, Situation

Dr. Thomas Davenport

Our Stakeholders - Your Audience • • • • • • The Boss Dilbert Catbert Dogbert Ratbert Alice

Who are the Stakeholders?
• The Boss
• • • • • Multi-edged sword Often nameless Stereotyped, misunderstood Needs differ from users Communication is key – What do you think is their major issue, if asked

Who are the Stakeholders?
• The Systems • Geek “Dilbert”
• • • Handle the tangibles of the Information Hypeway - Stereotyped Scared about what they don’t know Own credibility for Technology (the T in IT) Opportunity for partnership

Who are the Stakeholders?
• The Evil HR Director “Catbert”
• • • Feel ownership of “Human Issues” Often have enterprisewide perspective Own credibility for Training and “people” issues Opportunity for partnership

Who are the Stakeholders?
• • The External Consultant & Guru “Dogbert”
• Own Credibility especially when aimed at key targets Have strengths in executive communication, planning, and trends Their needs are different too.

Who are the Stakeholders?
• • The Ordinary Joe “Ratbert”
• The Worker Bee, the Enduser, the Client, Customer, or Patron Extremely Needy Have talents and knowledge that are under-exploited in the enterprise Looking for “Help” Own credibility for everything else

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• •

Who are the Stakeholders?
• • Unexploited • • Potential • “Alice”
• • Librarian and library workers Corporate memory Have talents and knowledge that are under-exploited in the enterprise Knowledge leaves the building at night Huge productivity issues

Personality and Behaviour
• • • • “Five personality dimensions and their influence on information behaviour” Jannica Heinstrom, Abo Akademi University, Finland (Oct. 2003) Central Question: “How does personality influence searching behaviour?”

Personality and Searching
Dimension Neuroticism Extraversion Openness Agreeableness Conscientious High Level Sensitive, VS Nervous Outgoing, VS energetic Inventive, VS curious Friendly, VS compassiona te VS Efficient, organized Low Level Secure, confident Shy, withdrawn Cautious, conservative Competitive, outspoken Easy-going, careless

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Sample Conclusions • Extraversion was related to informal information retrieval as well as preference for thought provoking documents over documents which confirmed previous ideas.

Sample Conclusions
• Openness to experience was related to broad information seeking, incidental information acquisition, critical information judgement, preference of thought provoking documents instead of documents which confirmed previous results. Conservativeness was related to problems with relevance judgement and preference for confirming documents.

Sample Conclusions
• Competitiveness was related to lack of time being a barrier to information retrieval, problems with relevance judgement and competence in critical analysis of information. Low levels of agreeableness forms a base for skeptical and critical thinking.

Sample Conclusions
• Conscientiousness was related to preference for thought provoking documents instead of documents that confirmed previous ideas and use of effort in information seeking. Carelessness, on the other hand was related to problems with relevance judgement, feeling that lack of time was a barrier to information retrieval and preference for documents that confirm previous ideas.

What Are You Selling?
• • • • Functions Features Advantages Benefits

Tie FFAB to Your Targets
• • • • Leaders want to see benefits Directors want to see advantages Influencers want to see features Consumers want to see functions

Client needs and benefits
• • •

What is a need? How does it relate to features? Is information a need?

• •

What is a benefit? What questions do I ask to determine “benefit”? What benefits do / can I offer?

• • • • Attention Interest or Identify Desire Action

• • • • • Sustain their attention Communication Eye contact Visual aids Customer involvement

Interest / Identify
• • Interest is not really enough Your prospect must identify with the product

• • • • Establish the need and lay the foundation Identify the Feature Sell the Benefit Get agreement that the Benefit is there

• • • • • • The Assumptive technique The Secondary Question Technique The Alternative Technique The Impending Event Technique The Narrative Technique Ask for the Sale/Order

9 Strategic Decision Stages
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

Problem Recognition Needs Analysis Product Concept Technology Choice Financial Analysis Product Design Product Sourcing Unit Commitment Use Implementation

5 Immutable Adoption Stages
1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Awareness Interest Evaluation Trial Adoption

Attributes Which Favor Rapid Adoption
1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Relative Advantage Compatibility Complexity Trialability Observability

The Classic Corn Research
• • • • • •

Innovators Early Adopters Early Majority Middle Majority Laggards Non-Adopters

2.5% 13% 17% 34% 17.5% 16%

The Market Adaptation Sequence
• • • • • •

Product Acceptance Motivation Confidence Level Education / Attitude Acceptance Criteria Selling Strategy

Understanding Adoption Types: Innovators
• • • • • •

Technology fascination Motivation -- Implement New Ideas Confidence Level High -- experiment, risk Self taught, independent Latest technology, few features, performance Self sold, when turned on, word of mouth

Understanding Adoption Types: Early Adopters
• • • • • •

The coming thing Motivation -- leap frog the competition, prove business Willing to try new things, reasonable risk Will attend night school to learn Innovation, better way to do job, selective Sold on benefits, references, word of mouth

Understanding Adoption Types: Late Adopters
• • • • • •

Obvious solutions to problems Motivation --social pressure, fear of obsolescence No risk, slow to change, needs references Seminars, proven products, hand holding Brand important, pay for needed features only, terms & conditions important Examples, address cost/technical support

Understanding Adoption Types: Laggards
• • • • • •

Absolute need Extreme competition/social pressure Reluctant to change Will send someone to a seminar, needs proof, ease of use Lowest cost, competitive terms, brand Productivity increases, fear

Sales Techniques
• • • • • • Planning, Goal Setting, Time Management Targeting Objection Handling Presentations Collateral Negotiating

• • • Use Your funnel Choose your prospects by your success criteria Marketing looks at homogenous segments - Sales looks for individuals or small groups of individuals

The Classic Sales Funnel
• • • • • • • Suspects, Prospects, Customers, Partners Contact Probe Presentation Proposal Follow-up Close

Open Ended Questioning
• • • Don’t ask questions that can be answered with yes or no. PRACTICE Use your reference interviewing skills - just change the goal!

Objection Handling
• • • • • Recognize the difference between an objection and a request for more info Know 90% of objections and prepare Probe first & restate the question Use proof and evidence Position objections for value & importance

• • • • Get used to the Audience-of-One Develop the scaleable presentation Learn how to present in numerous environments Every interaction is a sales and/or marketing opportunity - keep a balance

1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2003 2004

Growth in Intranet Searches

Growth through Good Tools

1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2003 2004 Sirsi SingleSearch

1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2003 2004
Savings per User

Sirsi SingleSearch

1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2003 2004
Savings per User

Sirsi SingleSearch

• • • • Brochures should support the selling process and follow the same rules There are more forms of collateral than brochures Focus each piece as technical, user aid, informational, sales, marketing, legal, etc. Target

• • • Read “Getting to Yes” and/or “Getting Past No” Provide Options Make the decision between two acceptable alternatives rather than success/failure

Key to Your Sale
• • • Ask for the Sale! Ask for the Sale! Ask for the Sale!

This will be the difference between the library being a small extension of the Intranet or vice versa

Executive Summaries

3-4 Selected Readings
• Selling for People Who Hate to Sell: Everyday Selling Skills for the Rest of Us (Ingrid McGrath Massie and John N. Watters, Prima Publishing, 1996) Getting Past No and Getting to Yes The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Dynamic Selling (Anthony Parinello, Alpha Books, 1998)

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Context is King, not Content.

• • • • • •

This came from your request It seems a little arrogant but I‘ll try Everything won’t work for you that works for me I try to model the behaviours, but… You have great skills already – everyone can improve through practice We will have my speaking schedule communicated soon

These are rules – they’re just guidelines – your mileage will vary.
• • • • • • • • • • • • •

Dress, coffee, muffins Avoid apologies Microphone Position Cel phones Lights Latecomers Notes Glasses Handouts – brochures, presentation Business cards Thanking appropriate people – before and after Introduction

Basic Principles
• • • • • • • • • • • Listener focused Engage the Audience They’re just people (e.g. Bill Gates, Madeleine Albright, Larry Ellison, the Queen) Don’t imagine them in their underwear! Clarity of message Build a bridge – Connect! Counsel Use proofs Use metaphors Appeal to an external authority or appeal to internal or personal research Use appropriate humor

• • • • • • • Tell a story Examples for Hyperion and Digital Heritage Rooms: Flavius Josephus Qianlong Mayans, Aztecs and Inca Last Month’s news - Weimar Library. . . Start with a grabber . . .

The Qianlong emperor, 17111799

Dedication of the Greatest Library in World's History

Mayans and Incas . . .

Fl avi us Josephus

Tips • Personalize it but make it relevant.

• • • • Review their website and bios – really… Google the key decision makers (regular and images) Run an EBSCO, CBCA, ProQuest or Gale search on key leaders Then use it subtly…The point is to make them know and FEEL that you understand them.


Localize things

• • • • • •

LC vs. Dewey Academic vs. Public or whatever Canadian vs. American Urban, rural, consortia Their competitive situation (not necessarily ours) Level of diversity – economic, ethnic, etc. …

• • • Use proofs Use references and examples. Remember that documents basically transmit facts and presentations add EQ, feeling, trust, patina, relationship, … Sooooo – focus on the emotional agenda equally with your factual, answer –oriented agenda.

Tips • The slide reinforces the oral message. Don’t read them. Period.

Tips • Slides let you keep control of the presentation. • Introduce your demos – don’t just launch into them.
• Tell them what you’re going to say and WHY it’s important.
1. Show them and point to exact proofs. 2. Reinforce the message at the end of each segment. 3. Summarize regularly.


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Control feedback
Why – because it is disruptive to the whole communication process Techniques include parking lots, deflection, offline, delay, answer, note cards, etc. Acknowledge the person, clarify the role, ask permission for longer answer

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Questions in groups are different than sales objection handling There is more risk here than is always recognized Rarely is it OK to use the word ‘NO” Keep it in context Use bridging words to think through your answer Clarify don’t ASSUME Write it down to show respect if it needs answering (or delegate a partner) Do NOT over-answer the question or introduce other issues.

• •
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Add graphics - not more text or even better replace bullets with images: Google Images or client’s own website To Highjack images using keyboard commands:
Click on image, Control C to copy Click on image. Control V to paste

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To Highjack images using mouse commands:
Right Click over image, Choose Copy to copy Right Click over image. Chose Paste to paste

Screen Shots • • Use the pointer Build Slides

There are a ton of ways To draw attention to your point


• • • • • • The demo is the meat in the sandwich – don’t forget the sandwich. Reinforce what they’re seeing Use a laser pointer Use the mouse cursor (enlarge it) Flip between screens (Alt Tab) Remove slides from the screen when they stay up too long… (Toggle ‘B’ key) – amazingly enough then they’ll focus attention n YOU.

Don’t be afraid to:
• • • • • • • Tell personal stories Give of yourself Quote research and others Point to progressive competitors Use appropriate humor Be passionate and positive Compliment their initiatives

Other Metaphors

"I see stupid people... they're everywhere... they walk around like everyone else... they don't even know that they're dumb"

er of libraries The pow

Shhhh !! Like Mona, We’ve got a secret . . .

How will you shape the future?

Stephen Abram, MLS VP Innovation, Sirsi Corporation 416-669-4855

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