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2008-06-25 20-43 Curiosity kept the cat alive


Hello from Starbuck on Oxford street. Some time has passed from my previous entry. I've been running around, for some weeks now, as we had a sort of an rush hour on audits. After couple of weeks doing strictly consulting, we headed off to London and switched to the sales/marketing mode.

From these trips you don't immediately know how well they've gone saleswise, it can be assessed at the point we the fat lady sings. For me, the most interesting thing learned in this trip has been more on a personal level. We've met some pretty high level people, some of them typically start talking deals of the size of our expected turnover for the year 2009. Then they have been some people in smaller positions. One of the senior guys from a veeeery large organisation was extremely helpful, he had not eaten in whole day and he still found some time to meet us, after office hours at his company. He was curious to hear what we do. He also genuinely wanted to help us, he draw an organisation chart of his company and discussed with us where we would fit in.

On the other hand we met couple of people who did not have any curiosity'. They formed an opinion on first 3 minutes and stick with it. I started wondering. It is great if we can establish quickly if we have something to offer to a customer or not. (Ok, now I revealed more of our weaknessess, our stuff is not perfect for everybody everywhere). Why it was then that I felt a little bit sorry at first?

Then it hit me: some of the people we met were not curious. They operate based on the assumption that they know everything already. One can notice this attitude by observing if the listener is willing to understand, or would he rather hear himself talking. Of course this goes two ways: both the salesperson and the customer need the curiosity and the ability to listen each other for a successful collaboration. (I tend to get carried away when explaining our technology etc).

I found out that in the end I didn't feel bad. One thing that helps in these kind of situations is that you'll have to know your focus and you need to know who your customers are. That builds your confidence and you are able to do more balanced assessment for example whether:

  1. You could help your potential customer but he does not want to listen
  2. You could help your potential customer and you should just learn more about explaining how
  3. You can not help your potential customer and you should not waste your and your not-to-be your customers time.

I finally begin to realize why all of our helpers have preached about the importance of knowing your focus and your ideal customer. This of course is just one of the many reasons.

Ok, this was my 2 cents on personal development. :) From the company perspective, we met great people who are willing to help us in setting our foot in UK and also some prospects how are interested in using our technology. Thank you! We'll be seeing soon!

-- jani 2008-06-25 21:13:50

I would like to point out that, contrary to what Jani said, our software is perfect for everyone everywhere. Furthermore, we never make misteaks.

-- jviide 2008-06-26 18:20:50

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