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"You're in Sales. Get over it!"

- Tom Suddes

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Never Make A Cold Call

This little nugget is about predisposition – the goal of which is to set the stage for your visit, call or presentation. Predisposition is an important component of the sales process and it’s done in advance of your visit.

So often we hear about visits where so much work was done to get the visit, there was a lot of strategy around the ask, number, etc. but for some reason or another something just didn’t feel right and so an ‘ask’ was never made. Many times this is because there was zero predisposition beforehand.

To help you understand predisposition, think of it as the sum of actions that will make the visit as far removed from a cold call as possible. This could apply in many ways:

  • Predisposition to your cause, case or project: If this person has no real idea about a particular problem, then your solution is not going to be as exciting. Or, perhaps it’s a long time relationship that doesn’t know about a wonderful project or campaign initiative. Get this person excited about the project. The best predisposition in the world would be to have the prospect see how/where/when you deliver your impact!
  • Predisposition to the ASK: If an ask is coming out of left field then you did not do a good job of predisposing to the ask BEFORE the visit. If you go a great job predisposing to the ask then numbers are VERY EASY to talk about.
  • Predisposition to the presentation team: The prospect might have a great relationship with a board member and even to the organization but not to you as an executive director or development person. Use your champion to set the stage to predispose for the personal relationship so that you don’t get the cold shoulder.
  • Predisposition in any other way that prevents your visit from being ‘cold’… 

Take this concept – No More Cold Calls –  and apply it to each presentation strategy so that you’re not met with cold or clueless receptions.