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ASK, NOT TELL

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RAC – Satellite Delay (Cont’d)

Updated: Mar 6

I talked about Satellite Delay in my last post. And I did find out something useful through the activity on Day 2 of the presentation class last week. A sales from the Small-Medium Enterprise department said, ‘When we sell to our client, we normally just sit down together and talk things through. Not the kind of meeting where you stand up and present one slide after another. I doubt whether it is useful to prepare too much like what we discussed yesterday for a presentation e.g. thinking through WIIFM, preparing visual aid. In fact, I suspect that with lot of preparation we may appear too polished. The clients may even think we are tricking them, or railing them into a desired solution!!’


It is great that I get to know the learner’s puzzle and thus can help him.


Here is my response, ‘The question is about how you communicate with your client in a sales setting. There are 2 extremes. One extreme is very much like what you said – you sit down and chat. No plot, no prepared material e.g. visual aid. A very casual atmosphere. Another extreme is a very formal atmosphere. You stand in front of your client and present one slide after another. Very much a one-way delivery without interaction.


Now imagine these 2 extremes to be on the ends of a straight line. There are in fact a lot of other ways of communication in between on the line. You can do a stand-up presentation but still be conversational. Alternatively, you can chat with your client but use the prepared material in case of need – just to help to illustrate your point. For example, you need a trade flow diagram to explain clearly how a supply chain solution works. Prepared material is there to make the communication more efficient but not to trick the client, or rail them to your desired solution.


(It snows heavily in Shanghai yesterday. It has been many many years since it snows like this. Just cannot help to share with you the photo……)

(It snows heavily in Shanghai yesterday. It has been many many years since it snows like this. Just cannot help to share with you the photo……)

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