We scratch our heads constantly wondering how to ‘influence’ or get a ‘yes’ from someone we are pitching. We attempt to wow our audience with fancy graphics and all manner of media and or research to get our ‘point’ across, but often we are just soliciting more blank stares, more questions, even a bit of animosity. Yikes.
What gives? We might think: I’m a good person, I’m not lying, my delivery is respectful and my knowledge is there…maybe we might think, what is this person’s problem, why is this going south? It’s easy to become frustrated, over-analyze, and get wrapped up in too much introspection which all lead you to chasing down answers to the wrong questions.
It’s important to remember that you are dealing with a person. We are all people and everything is personal. People come with agenda, fear & loathing, buckets of sunshine, problems, problems, and more problems. After all, you wouldn’t even be speaking with this prospective client right now if they didn’t have some problem they needed you to solve. Solve the problem you must, but the problem doesn’t exist exclusive of people, and a person is discussing the problem, seeking solution, not the problem itself. We must address the personal of the problem continually throughout delivering solution.
People press buttons and drive through traffic and spill coffee. People dream up the process, implement, and screw it up – every plan succeeds or fails because people.
5 Beans Kit offers a ‘WordPress’ kit as our number 1 solely because of the people factor. It solves problems ‘people’ have while providing solution. When client and I discuss details of the problem my solution involves the people aspect throughout. Implementation, usage, expectations, results are all worked out with the ‘tech’ solution, or ‘game-plan’ developed by addressing actual real-world operation: by people.
Your prospective client has limited resources which require them to ‘act’ a certain way. That’s personal. They have limited experience and or training in your solution and that presents a very personal attitude; you will hear it in vocal inflections, poorly disguised ‘lies’, etc. Everything has to go through them – that’s personal.
Catering to the problem is what you do when the personal aspects are considered and intertwined with solution. By default your technical solution then can deliver results that will work in the real world.
You can address the personal almost immediately when you are meeting with your prospective client: tell me what you did, or didn’t do to get here….tell me what the process was, what the thinking was, how it rolled-out. If your solution doesn’t address – deadlines being missed because the person responsible for whatever task can’t drive through snow, then you have just wasted everybody’s time and lost a client.
You don’t have to send flowers to your client’s 9 year old daughter upon her birthday, but you might want to design solution around your client being a parent, with that whole life of responsibility and time constraints.