SocialTech Tuesday: Have You Been SWAM’d?

For important reasons, today’s post is longer than normal, and I hope you will take time to read through to the end. Your comments are also appreciated!

Since today is SocialTech Tuesday, it seems appropriate to jump into a controversy that has ignited a firestorm of angry discussion among LinkedIn members. Many people are incensed over a new LinkedIn policy introduced (very quietly) in January. The policy relates to groups and is called Sitewide Auto Moderation dubbed SWAM.

Though I am a LinkedIn power user and am pretty well versed in the platform, I had no idea that this policy had been introduced. Chances are that as a group member or a group manager/moderator, you didn’t know about it either. In fact, it seems the only way that people found out about the policy change is if they personally became affected by it. I found out about it a few days ago when a colleague of mine was SWAM’d and asked me if I knew anything about what was going on. That’s when I started digging.

In essence here’s what the policy is all about.

In an effort to reduce spam in the discussion area of groups, which I support by the way, LinkedIn made it possible to force an automatic moderation of posts and comments across “all groups” by any member who had been blocked in just one of the groups that they belonged to. The assumption is that if a Group Manager deemed you a spammer in their group, then all your posts and comments were suspect in other groups as well. While I appreciate the spirit and intent of the new policy, I believe it is pretty far reaching and perhaps pushes the boundaries of censorship.

The official policy is this…

“If a group manager blocks you from their group, your posts to other groups are automatically subject to moderator approval. Your postings to other groups are still submitted, but they are now pending until a member of the group’s management team approves it for posting.”

That means that those messages sit in a cue waiting for a group manager or their team of moderators to approve the comments.

Why is this needed?

That’s the million dollar question, and I am wondering what is the REAL why behind this decision? Group managers have always had the ability to block someone in their group that they felt were spamming versus participating in group conversations. Why is Big Brother stepping in? Is there some reason that decisions cannot be left to the individual group managers? Why is LinkedIn arbitrarily deciding that an infraction in one group means the member is an offender in every other group?

Stop Drinking Your Own Kool-Aid

Is this yet another example of how companies become too internally focused when it comes to their decision making? Not only does it seem like the far reaching effects were not considered by asking tougher questions internally, it doesn’t appear that LinkedIn bothered to seek out external feedback either.

Here are other questions that I believe needed to be asked and answered before plowing ahead with this decision:

What is the ramification to the member if we put this policy/technology change into effect? LinkedIn will tell you that if you fall victim to being SWAM’d you only need to approach each Group Manager and ask them to reinstate you. Imagine you belong to 50 groups. Does LinkedIn really think that forcing someone to reach out to each group manager individually will be an easy task? Can you imagine the time it takes? What if those group managers aren’t actively managing their group and never bother to respond? It happens all the time and now the individual is sort of screwed if no one pays attention to their reinstatement request.

How will this affect revenue we earn from premium subscriptions? I will say up front that I do not believe premium members deserve special consideration per se, although you could argue that maybe new features should be rolled out to them first. What I do believe is that somebody should have done a little analysis to see what it means if premium members are being kicked to the curb by Group Managers with no notice, warning or explanation. As of this writing, I can’t give you numbers, but I can say that several hundred people affected have publicly said they reverted back to the “free” version. That lost revenue will start adding up.

Does each group clearly communicate guidelines with respect to what content is appropriate for posting in the “discussion” area? It is very easy to create group rules and remind members to read them. If there are no group guidelines, is it really fair to ban someone who chooses to post self-promotions? How can you be accused of breaking the rules if there are none?

What will be the administrative impact on Group Managers? One Group Manager told me that this new policy has placed an impossible burden on him. His group is quite large – 30,000+ - and overnight he started having upwards of 500 posts DAILY to have to moderate. Manually. The policy was intended to help deal with SPAM. Didn’t anyone ask the question about whether or not these group leaders would have the bandwidth to deal with the outcome of this decision?

Is it possible that Group Managers with an act to grind will use the ability to block people unfairly? In other words, is there a chance that knowing a member could be blocked in all groups, would they use that as an opportunity to retaliate for a perceived infraction, the fact that they didn’t like the individual’s comments, or worse, use it as an opportunity to put their competitors at a disadvantage? In the course of researching the situation, it does appear that there are instances of this happening.

What will this decision mean for the power that participating in groups has represented? Being able to contribute to conversations or start discussions gives a group member the ability to demonstrate their thought leadership and capabilities. Done smartly, that visibility leads to sales opportunities. But if members know that a Group Manager could get pissed off at them, cut them off because they didn’t like what they said or posted, or accidentally clicked on the wrong button, why would anyone waste time participating in groups at all?

Aren’t we obligated to clearly communicate this change to all members? For me, this is the most important question that LinkedIn should have asked. If you believe in the decision, why hide? Why not clearly communicate what you are doing and why and ask for feedback before actually putting it into application. It seems to be common practice for social sites to makes changes without bothering to tell anyone. When it comes to policy though, I think the company should be obligated to make a public statement. As a member of the platform, I’m bound by the terms of use, but if you keep slipping in whammies like this one, how is that really being transparent?

What will be the impact on our Customer Service team? My point above might have mitigated many of the support tickets and complaints being filed. Without having any knowledge of the change or what happened if a group member was blocked, hundreds of support tickets have been filed. That is a heck of a lot of manpower to waste.

I plan to keep watch with respect to this policy, so expect more posts to come.

For now I will close with the following…

After 29 years working in technology, I’ve seen a lot of big players come and go. Arrogance slowly creeps in as people think, we are big, bad and no one can touch us. LinkedIn is not immune to this insidious disease, which may be a small crack today, but a chasm in the not too distant future. Guaranteed, a band of super smart tech nerds are out there somewhere working away in their garage to create the next best thing.

When a social networking company forgets that it is the members that got them where they are now, the fall may be slow but it certainly will be imminent.

Mitigate the Risk in Social Media Selling

It stands to reason that sales, the most social of business activities, would make use of social media. Platforms for online collaboration are rapidly changing the way we work, offering new ways to engage with customers, colleagues, and the world at large. Sales reps now have the ability to participate in global conversations about their products, their field, and their expertise. But some companies are so worried about potential mistakes or loss of control that they don’t allow participation. That’s a bad idea.

Choosing not to be present in social networks puts your company and your salespeople at a competitive disadvantage. Instead, acknowledge the risks and mitigate them.

Read the rest of our guest post on the Harvard Business Review blog.

The Gaps Discussion Continued

In my last post I talked about the five gaps that I believe are impeding salespeople from reaching their goals. The most critical to resolve of these gaps requires a change in thinking and mindset. Until that happens, until salespeople and their management come to accept that the way that we need to sell today has changed, they will continue to wonder why they aren’t hitting their goals.

Adapt - If we know that buyers start the sales process without salespeople when they have a business problem to solve (and a variety of sources like GartnerSirius Decisions and others back this up), then salespeople need to have strong, compelling, visible presence on the web but especially LinkedIn if they are B2B. Moreover, they need to be actively sharing real-time, relevant information that adds value for prospects in advance of sales opportunities.

Leverage - Salespeople are not leveraging technology (LinkedIn, InsideView, etc.) before making a call to a prospect or even to reconnect with a client that has done business with them in the past. They are not using real-time data and the social web to look for triggers or events that would indicate a need to solve a business problem. Instead, they are trying to secure that phone call or face-to-face meeting blind with their goal being to present features and benefits. They make phone calls or go into meetings asking questions that they should already know the answer to. They are not demonstrating the traits of a “trusted advisor”, so to today’s buyer they look like any other vendor.

Research - Cold calling. Really? Don’t even get me started. I’m on the receiving end of a lot of it and it is awful. Canned or scripted phone calls and emails fall on deaf ears, but salespeople keep doing it. InsideView says that 92% of the time the phone call and email is ignored if the buyer doesn’t know the person. Why do it when there are better, more effective ways to invest time? An post yesterday, laid out a cold calling script that they claim gets results. While better written and classier than most that I’ve seen, I wonder what would happen if the rep actually did a little homework to know more about the business they were calling. Even a well written script that is one-sided and about what you want rather than what your prospect cares about is still not a good approach.

Qualify - Too many salespeople give everyone an equal amount of attention when they should be qualifying who has the greatest potential for business now and in the near term. Just because someone took your call doesn’t mean they are qualified to buy or that they are even the relevant decision maker. Smart salespeople learn to ask the right questions to determine if a real opportunity actually exists and they make sure that they are talking to the real buyer. Someone may have a budget, they may have what appears to be the right title, but finding out who really owns the decision is critical. Time is precious. Spend it wisely.

Engage…or not - Salespeople get really excited when they reach someone and chat a few minutes and that person says, “send me a proposal”. Me, I’m not turning cartwheels. Generally, if that’s the case, it is likely too late in the game and someone else is the front runner. Proposals take a lot of work, so salespeople should know they have a real shot at winning before investing their time. Do you really want to spend all that time only to have your work used to negotiate a better deal with your competitor? Our Sales Opportunity Snapshot training and coaching helps to resolve gaps #4 and #5. It’s basically a process and methodology for asking the right questions to determine whether the opportunity is qualified and/or worth investing time in at all.

Buyer 2.0 has spoken. They are tired of gimmicks and scripted sales pitches. They want relevance. They want you to know their business. They want you to add value.

I’m asking again…are you listening?


SOCIAL SALES SURVEY – take this quick, 3-minute (I promise) survey to help us understand how salespeople are using social media. You will receive a copy of the results. Click here to complete the survey.

5 Sales Gaps

Sales as a profession is my passion, and as a company we are relentless at leading the evolution of sales. Right now, sales is at a crossroads. Buyer behavior has changed and largely sales teams are not keeping up.

The three big challenges sales execs tell us they are facing are:

  • The need to increase revenue (and certainly keep it from decreasing)
  • The need to improve deal win rates
  • The need to shorten the sales cycle
What’s interesting is that these three items have been a problem for most sales organizations for some time now. I wrote in an earlier post that CRM won’t solve a companies revenue problem, although increasing revenue using a CRM system was a promise made and not kept by many vendors in this space. Technology doesn’t matter much if you continue to use an outdated approach when getting your prospect on the phone or meeting face-to-face.

Currently, there are five gaps in the way that most salespeople are approaching the sales process that I think need to be addressed and fast. They are:

  • Gap #1: Not adapting to changed buyer behavior
  • Gap #2: Not leveraging technology to do their homework in advance of calling/emailing people
  • Gap #3: Still wasting time on cold calling
  • Gap #4: Poor prospecting and not appropriately qualifying opportunities
  • Gap #5: Getting engaged at the wrong point in the sales cycle but continuing to invest time anyway; i.e. submit proposals

These gaps continue to stand in the way of sales management achieving their stated desire to increase revenue, improve sales deal win rates and shrink the sales cycle.

At the recent Sales 2.0 Conference in London, McKinsey presented their findings from research they had done to identify the five winning strategies of top performing sales teams. I was pleased to see that number two on the list was that top salespeople “sell the way that their customer wants to buy”. Well imagine that. I’ve been saying it for years. Thank you, McKinsey!

In my next post, I’ll get into more detail about the gaps and why they are a problem. But for now, I’ll leave you with this famous quote from Einstein…

“Insanity is doing the same things over and over again expecting a different result.”

Are you listening?


SOCIAL SALES SURVEY – take this quick, 3-minute (I promise) survey to help us understand how salespeople are using social media. You will receive a copy of the results. Click here to complete the survey.

4 Ways to Use Social Media for Sales

Assess - what is the situation currently? Are your salespeople using social media? Is so, what tools? LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube or blogging? How well are they using social media? If you are not using social media why not?

Message - Craft a compelling value statement. Answer these questions:

  1. What are you promising your buyer?
  2. What do you offer them? It doesn’t need to be detailed. Keep it higher level.
  3. How are you different and why should your buyer care?
  4. Why should I spend money with you and not someone else? Everyone says they can help us increase revenue. How do you do it?
  5. Prove it to me. What examples can you give me to support your claims?

Create - Great content is the name of the game. Not sales pitches but value based content that that truly does something worthwhile for your buyer.

Train - If you don’t invest in training your people, there is a high likelihood that nothing will change. Don’t expect them to figure it out on their own.


SOCIAL SALES SURVEY - take this quick, 3-minute (I promise) survey to help us understand how salespeople are using social media. You will receive a copy of the results. Click here to complete the survey.

CRM Won’t Solve Your Revenue Problem

The promise of CRM systems is that when sales organizations implement them, revenue will increase, right? My own experience as a corporate sales manager when CRM systems were first being rolled out told me that nothing could be farther from the truth. But by now, you might be thinking that things have changed. Well, not so much.

I just finished reading a white paper from CSO Insights and as a part of their 2012 Sales Performance Optimization report they asked companies to share the top three benefits that they’ve experienced as a result of making the investment in a CRM system. Out of a list of ten benefits (I didn’t count “other”), guess what…

  • Increasing revenues shows up #7 on the list
  • Improved win rates is #8
  • Shortened sales cycles rolls in at #10

Given that sales executives we talk to tell us that their top three priorities are:

  • Increasing revenue
  • Improving win rates
  • Shortening the length of time it takes to close a deal


It seems there is a pretty big disconnect. While the top three benefits cited: improved rep/manager communication, improved forecast accuracy and reduced administrative burden on salespeople are all important, clearly CRM systems don’t close deals.

The whitepaper goes on to talk about the importance of sales learning to leverage social media, especially tools like LinkedIn and Twitter, but we find it surprising at how many sales leaders and their salespeople still resist.

In early May, I responded to the question, “What will it take to make social media a serious business tool?” on In my post, I shared eight reasons why adoption is slower than it should be.

Technology is merely an enabler and as the CSO Insights study has shown that CRM systems may improve internal efficiencies, but they don’t do much in terms of driving revenue. Isn’t it time to look to another approach?

Move your Online Social Conversation to a Phone Conversation

I have found that one of the challenges sales people face is finding time to do the intelligence gathering and research they know is the most important first step to successful selling.

Gathering Intelligence and Organizing your Findings

The first step in successful selling is to have a well-defined process for documenting and organizing in the intelligence gathering and research phase– this will save you time. At Social Centered Selling we’ve created a toolset that organizes the information and assists our clients in qualifying sales worthy leads.  Some guidance here:

  • Identify profile information about your target.
  • Note where you are connected inside and outside the organization you are pursuing.
  • Follow the company on LinkedIn and executives on Twitter.
  • Document the information and insights that you have gathered while doing your research.

Effective intelligence gathering includes using Sales 2.0 tools such as InsideView to keep abreast of any new information about the target executives you are pursuing and the companies they represent.

How to Identify Sales Worthy Leads

Now that you have done all of your research and intelligence gathering on a company and the target executive(s) you want to approach, how do you know when to move the conversation to a telephone call?  Begin by asking:

  • What information suggests that you have a sales worthy lead and there are areas in which to engage?  What key events, business drivers or initiatives to address the drivers have been announced by the company and, by which executives?
  • Why should you pursue now?  What are the top five reasons you believe the executive will be interested in taking your call?  Be honest with yourself.  Answer this question from the perspective of the executive with whom you are going to be speaking.
  • What will you say to the executive that will cause him to accept a meeting with you?

Call Planning 

Using this structured approach will increase the likelihood of an executive accepting a meeting with you during your initial telephone call.  Do not read from a script; rather, have a call strategy and plan it out to maximize your chances of success in securing a meeting.  Winging it is for amateurs.

Get enthusiastic about approaching the executive for a meeting. You’ve done your homework and you have determined why an executive would want to hear with you. It’s important to relate to both their personal and business agenda. Be sure to listen intently to what the executive is telling you about their problem and what a solution will need to deliver.

Remember the objective of the call is to secure a meeting – not sell them!  The call should only last five to seven minutes and pursue the conversation from the point of view of developing a long-term relationship.

Preparation Essential to Success in Securing a Meeting during your Initial Telephone Call

Adapted from Selling to the C-Suite, co-authors Bistritz and Nichols.

Create Credibility Fast: Begin with Three Levels of Client Learning

Creating credibility means having done all of your research and intelligence gathering on the company you want to pursue and then demonstrating you’ve done your homework when you meet with the prospect-client executive.

Gathering information leads to insight

The tools for intelligence gathering and doing our research are now at our finger tips – social media has truly revolutionized our process for client learning because we now have instant access to real time social conversations. Yet, sales professionals often miss leveraging this intelligence despite it’s now become known as the quickest way to be in a position to contribute insights and create a foundation for long-term, collaborative relationships – trusted advisor relationships –with prospect-client executives.

As described by the authors of Clients for Life:  How Great Professionals Develop Breakthrough Relationships, connecting with an executive requires three levels of prospect-client learning, and with social media we also need to apply this same thinking with our real time intelligence gathering. The three levels of learning are, namely:

  • The prospect’s-client’s industry
  • The prospect’s-client’s organization
  • The prospect’s-client executive

As sales professionals we must become savvy at understanding social sales and how to master Sales 2.0 tools in order to effectively compete in today’s new world of selling, where Buyer 2.0 is in charge of the buying process.

Doing research within your network to determine if a connection is able to provide a credible introduction is a smart way to leverage this resource. And remember, it’s not all about you (“Go-Giver”).  Offering up a little bit of sugar goes a long way. According to a research study presented by the authors of Selling to the C-Suite, a recommendation from someone inside an organization will usually-to-always produce securing a meeting 84% of the time; a credible referral from outside the company will usually-to-always secure a meeting 42% of the time. Pretty impressive…this isn’t old fashioned, outdated cold calling!

When you identify people in your LinkedIn network, for example who have first or second level connections to you, it’s time to set up a live conversation. Pick up the phone and ask the connection questions that will determine their level of relationship and standing with the executive you want to approach. Be focused on two things this connection may be able to help you with:

  1. What information do they have that can help you with the three levels of prospect-client learning as described above?
  2. And, do they have a credible relationship with the individual you are trying to meet?

If the person you are connected to doesn’t have a credible relationship with the executive you want to meet, proceed with caution. This is a good time to ask them if they know someone else that you could talk to.

What are some of the questions and insight you need to ascertain from your contact to determine if they have a favorable – or even better yet, a credible – relationship with the executive you’re trying to pursue?

  • When was the last time they spoke with the executive and who initiated the call?
  • What was the nature of their conversation?  Was their value delivered?
  • When was the last time the executive asked them to serve as a resource or deliver value around a problem, or shared confidential information with them?
  • What has the executive done for them or with them in the past six months? If there is an answer here this could be an indicator that there is a trusted advisor relationship. This is pretty darn sweet when we learn this!

If the person in your network appears to have a favorable relationship with the executive, and better yet one in which is credible, then the next step is to ask for an introduction. Watch for an upcoming article on how to use the intelligence gathering and research you’ve done to move your executive level social conversation to a phone conversation.

Always find ways to give back to the person in your network who has just shared insight and their time with you. And if they are in a position to provide an introduction for you to the executive you are targeting, be sure to treat the prospect-client with kid gloves. In sales we all know that relationships and time are essential to building a profitable stream of business; we must respect both.

How Social Fits the Sales Funnel

Business partner, Kent Gregoire shared a blog post with me that was written by Greg Alexander over at Sales Benchmark Index. By now, many companies understand the concept of creating content that is compelling to move opportunities from awareness, interest and desire into action that turns into a tangible result. The blog post focused on helping a client to evaluate over 100 pieces of content to try to determine what content was moving people through the sales funnel. Interestingly enough, the content that was having the greatest ROI was in the middle of the sales funnel. At the same time, the company had very little content actually attributed to that portion of the funnel.

After the marketing folks climbed down off the proverbial ledge wondering how in the world they could rally the resources needed to crank out the content they most needed but lacked, a deeper look was taken to better understand if it was the content or the way in which the content was communicated that made the difference. Hint: it wasn’t the content!

This story got me thinking about how important it is to determine if you are taking the right sales approach, based on the changes we now see in buyer behavior.

Social media fits the sales funnel and has the greatest potential, I believe, on the “front end” of the cycle during the prospecting, opportunity qualification, pre-sales call research and get that meeting scheduled phase. Done correctly, you get in front of the right buyers faster and significantly shrink the sales cycle.

To be successful requires an innate understanding that slamming out a few LinkedIn status updates, Tweets or Facebook posts is NOT what it takes to move a sale from awareness to interest and meeting to close. With respect to succeeding with a social selling approach, here’s where a little strategic thinking comes into play.

The start of the social selling process all begins when your potential buyers are in the “I know that I have a business problem, who can help me solve it mindset”. This is the point in which they surf the web, search out options on LinkedIn and ask their colleagues what to buy and from whom. These buyers are not initially engaging sales people, but they will down the road if they like what they find.

This is why compelling presence and content is critical for today’s sales professional. If your buyer lands on your LinkedIn page and it’s devoid of anything relevant or compelling, game over. They are moving on and you probably don’t even know it.

Here is a 7-step process that I use myself, and I recommend that you and your salespeople follow suit.

Step 1: Create great content - or leverage what marketing has already done for you - and showcase it. If you are in B2B sales, your LinkedIn profile is ideal. Jazz it up with a SlideShare presentation, add a video, share white papers, press releases and case studies using or host a book list. Check out the amazing array of apps available to you within LinkedIn with the FREE service. These applications do not require an upgraded account.

Step 2: Create a list of people you are targeting using “advanced search”. Next, save your search results and then week to week let LinkedIn do the heavy lifting for you. A saved search means that on a weekly basis you will receive an email listing the names of the new folks entering your network who match your search criteria. This is real-time information that gives you the ability to contemplate a strategy for engaging with them.

Step 3: Do some homework to determine what matters most to the people on your targeted list. What drivers are happening in their business?  What are the key initiatives that have been put in place to address the drivers?  Do you have a solution that could be integrated into the business environment?

Step 4: Based on your homework, evaluate the real potential for getting in front of a sales opportunity. Do some digging…does it look like they have budget? What do they have to gain or lose from taking action or not? Decide if moving ahead now will yield the greatest results. Ask yourself if the consequences your prospect faces are dire enough to warrant them taking action? If not, you are likely wasting time.

Step 5: Figure out what groups or forums your prospect likes to participate in. Join those groups and observe and contribute. A client just told me a great story that relates to this point. They are trying to reach a prospect with XYZ title in the companies that they target. A member of the marketing team recently attended an event that included a panel made up of their targeted buyers. During the session, the panelists were asked what the best way to connect with them was and they said, “Don’t cold call us and don’t bother us with email. If you want to connect with us and demonstrate your credibility, join our LinkedIn groups and connect with us on Twitter.” Need I say more? Today, smart salespeople will adapt to the ways in which their prospects want to connect.

Step 6: Assuming all goes well in Steps 4 and 5, determine who you know inside the company that can “sponsor” an introduction or find out who has the strongest external connections that can “refer” you to your targeted prospect. Did you know that when a credible sponsor inside an organization introduces you, 84% of the time that business decision maker will take the meeting? It’s 44% for referrals. As you might imagine, things like cold calling drop into the single digits in terms of securing the right meeting. These 2 suggested approaches significantly reduce sales cycle time, so it’s a smart move to begin there.

Step 7: Let’s assume that you’ve secured a meeting. Put a plan together for what you specifically want to accomplish. This is not the time to deliver a boring; one dimensional sales pitch that is all about you. And while you are at it, skip the lame questions that you should already know the answers to. If you hope to have a shot at moving a deal forward, your agenda must focus on what matters most to your buyer. Buyers want to know that you understand their business and you need to show them that you’ve taken the time to learn as much as you can (refer back to steps 3 & 4).

Social media has implications on the back-end also, but that’s more in line with customer retention and loyalty, which is typically something that marketing owns.

For salespeople, focus your attention on the front-end of the funnel and integrate social media as a strategic approach that blends strong off-line techniques too. Today’s buyer demands a different sales approach.

How much longer will you wait to adapt?

What’s Your Why?

People don’t buy WHAT you do; they buy WHY you do it.  –Simon Sinek

If you haven’t checked out Simon’s TEDx video, you have to…now. The fact that it is in the top 20 TEDx videos watched is impressive on its own, but what Simon says (couldn’t resist) may seriously challenge your thinking. It has mine.

Let me ask you something…

Can you answer the question, why do you do what you do? I don’t mean what; I don’t mean how…I mean WHY.

Why do you sell cloud computing?

Why do you sell image consulting?

Why do you sell home services like plumbing repair?

Why do you sell books at Barnes and Nobles?

Why do you sell sponsorships to conferences with a cause?

Why do you sell social media marketing?

Why do you sell hotel rooms and conference space?

Why do you sell leadership programs?

Why do you sell coaching?

Why do you sell whatever the next wiz bang technology of the future is going to be?

Get the idea?

Famous leadership and motivational guru’s too numerous to name here have all preached about what they believe inspiring others is all about. Many have complicated theories, elaborate approaches or long lists of the tenets of great leadership.  But I have to say that when I listened to Simon talk about his concept of The Golden Circle, I had a serious “ah ha” moment. The concept is elegant and simple, but don’t be fooled. The concept is quite powerful, and if you, like me, really let the magic of Simon’s words sink in, I’m betting that you can’t help but be challenged to think differently also.

What is your why?

Meet someone at a networking event and ask them about their business and it is quite likely that the answer you receive focuses on “what” the company does and “how” they do it. Pretty standard and sometimes boring approach isn’t it? What’s really that inspiring about either one? What you do is merely the proof of what you believe to be important. The how…well, that’s just the process for getting it done.

Which leads to why…

Why do you do what you do? Simon suggests that using an inside out approach produces far greater results. People buy what you believe he tells us; not as much as what is accomplished or the results delivered. When you focus on the why, you realize that your goal is not about doing business with anyone with a pulse who can buy your product or service. Instead, your goal becomes one about doing business with people who believe what you believe.

There is no way that I can do the matter justice, so I want you to go and watch the video and then….come back and tell me what you think.