Get the Sales Team together and ‘present’ what we want them to do + give them the up-to-date product info
which unfortunately often becomes a greatly underutilised format.
Typical desired outcome:
Have the Team go away all filled-up with Strategy and Product info and ready to hit the road running however, unless they have been able to equate the additional ‘application’ processes sometimes the potential take-home can be reduced.
How to reduce the ‘Death by PowerPoint’ while still conveying the messages PowerPoint has evolved as the greatest strength to conveying information yet at the same time can be the greatest detriment to achieving buy-in. When the invited Speaker uses the same format as the internal presenters, he/she tends to meld into the program more than standing out. Check the amount of slides this person intends to use less is better, none is brilliant, as then they will be using their personal animation and storytelling skills and they will be a stand-out from the ‘norm’.
Use the standard 1.5 hour Presentation Blocks and have a Motivational Speaker to ‘wake em up’ after Lunch on Day 2 and add some glitz and entertainment so they go away saying ” that was fun” which is good, but ultimately Sales Increases are needed, so getting the balance is the key.
Ideal plan with follow-up for results:
Taking a fresh approach to the complete process by sequencing the Presentations with ‘linked purpose’ is the key, then to define each segment’s own take-away aspect, which when combined at the end creates a PLAN to follow, AND enables activity checking follow-ups.
For example, if you are a Sales Manager wanting to instil into your Team the need to sell-in more and to take responsibility to achieve the outcome, do not allow the Marketing Presentation to be at the end of the Conference, as this will have them sighing with relief ” it is going to be OK, these Marketing Initiatives will make it all happen I don’t have to change”. The ideal scenario is to have Marketing Presentations at the beginning, and then use every opportunity to ‘link’ to how these initiatives can be ‘exploited’ by the B2B Sales Team.
Way too many times I have seen the flash TV campaign at the end and noticed the Sales Team’s immediate ‘relief’. So your potential Motivational Sales Speaker needs to totally understand your strategies. Then he/she can create a Session which under-the-radar enhances the how-tos and or buy-in if not, take care as you may well only get a ‘warm fuzzy’ and little shift in relevant behaviour.
Speaker Criteria and suitability evaluation:
The question is really, do you use a Keynote Speaker or a skilled Facilitator/MC/Anchor who can Independently tie all the aspects together with clever segment set-ups and ‘closes’ which obtain buy-in, while providing the Motivation on a drip by drip basis so that it is then internalised.
OR an Industry Expert who can use parallels which the Team can relate to standalone Motivational Speakers are no longer an appropriate format for Sales Teams, however Inspirational Speakers have their place in a Conference structure. ( Don’t confuse the term of Inspirational with Motivational, even though many Motivational Speakers provide purposeful inspiration )
An example where I had to provide a ‘save’ was when a Mountain Climber shared his motivational story as the opener for a Conference, the problem was the generic motivation had no relevance to the challenges the group were facing. However, as the MC/Anchor/Facilitator, I was able to quickly create analogies which enabled the message to have relevance as stand alone, the Presented message would have achieved chit-chat during the coffee break and that would have been ‘it’.
How to evaluate Speaker ‘fit’ for you:
Imagine the person Presenting to your Team and what factors they would be ‘reading’ to gain respect for the Speakers message too many times this critical aspect is not even taken into consideration and yet it is the key element if it feels right, go with it!
Remember the Motivational Sales Speaker or Facilitator needs to be the catalyst for your message, where as an Inspirational Speaker can be generic to people, and so stimulate their personal motivation only. If you want to gift to your people some personal inspiration at the Conference Dinner then this is the ideal time to use such a person, but not as the opener or during a ‘content driven’ Sales Conference.
The key Do’s and Don’ts:
DO ensure that the Facilitator/Speaker is able to take your brief OR accept that ‘what they do is what they do’ and it is OK for your Team.
Don’t expect all Speakers to be able to take a brief unless their Testimonials clearly suggest they can.
Take advantage of Colin’s complimentary triage phone call on (tel: 0418318799 ) and ask him questions, and ‘note’ the insightful answers from 30+ years of experiences and or download the Conference White Paper on this website.
Colin is a Certified Speaking Professional ( CSP ) and a founding member of the National Speakers Association of Australia ( now: Professional Speakers Australia). He is a Melbourne based Motivational Speaker and Sales Professional who has worked with the who’s who of Australasian brands