Preparing for a tough meeting
How do you prepare for a tough meeting?
As the economy tightens there will be some tough sales meetings on your agenda. Being ready is crucial to success. As the Scouts say “Be Prepared”
Good preparation will put you way ahead of the crowd. Yeah, yeah, I hear you say. But my experience is that most are poorly prepped. Here are some suggestions to prepare for a tough meeting:
1. Do your homework – research your market, competitors and your customer.
2. Know your product and its value proposition as it applies to this situation. You need to know what your customers want. Establish their buying needs and focus on this.
3. Have a desired outcome to aim for.
4. Ask in advance what objections could arise. Be ready with specific answers.
5. Ask in advance if there is anything specific to cover or get from the meeting.
6. Send out an agenda and plan what order you would like to discuss items. Ask the customer to add their own thoughts. It might unearth a hidden issue.
7. Prepare any paperwork in advance. If a slide deck is needed, make sure it is short and relevant.
8. If a follow up meeting is required, have your diary at hand to arrange this while you are there.
9. Continuous improvement. Learn from each meeting. Practice makes perfect!
To stay on the front foot, you don’t want to be fumbling for an answer. It looks unprofessional. As the adage goes – Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance. This is more true now than ever. What might you add to this list?