Thursday, February 21, 2008
It's all about selling the product!
Recently I've been brutally dragged from my comfortable existence on the beach to assist the company in activities that are called "business development" here in the consulting world, in the normal corporate world it would be called "sales activities", but since consulting is a bit like the world behind the mirror compared to the ordinary corporate enviroment, things are sometimes labeled differently for reasons I have yet failed to understand. In my previous company, sales activities were performed by the sales department and was seen as the most "blue collar" job inside the corporate structure (no shadow over salesmen though, I always enjoyed working with them) but in the exciting high powered world of consulting, the selling is performed by the top level people and most of the younger people rarely has to bother with this.
Now, I've been recruited for some "business development" activites since I'm in between projects at the moment. The exciting job that lies ahead of me is a combination of cold calling and telemarketing in trying to get some companies to meet with us so we can do our pitch. I received some interesting directions on how to position my pitch which can be summarized as in below:
Pitch: "We are the leading company in consulting for industry X"
Truth: I have no experience in this particular industry and the collective experience in the office is minor to say the least
Pitch: "We have a number of exciting opportunities that we would like to discuss with you"Truth: To the best of my knowledge, we have NO opportunies to offer although we could always discuss just for the fun of it
With the instructions I have received for the pitch, I'm pretty certain I can get a number of companies to agree to meet with us, the problem will be when they realize that we don't have anything to offer at the moment... A second meeting will be hard to arrange...