By Ago Cluytens
As a former buyer and executive, I’ve been on the receiving end of sales presentations hundreds if not thousands of times. Some were good, some are bad, and some were funny or awkward.
But the best sales presentations were those that never even happened. Let me explain.
When I was a sales rookie, in my very first sales meeting, I walked in with 80-something slides and a compelling, inspiring (or so I thought) and highly engaging story of what my company did, why it mattered, and how it would benefit the client. And I got shot down.
Even though I was too inexperienced to notice it, my buyer was turned off by my approach in a matter of minutes. As I went to slide after slide after slide, I became painfully aware that not only was my buyer not paying any attention to what I was saying, but he was in fact becoming actively and openly disengaged.
It was only years later that I realised that I made a classic beginner’s mistake.
I pitched. And I failed.