One of the biggest obstacles many speakers face as they contact organi- zations to build their business is being able to connect with the right peo- ple—decision makers who have the power to hire them.
It doesn’t matter if you are the best speaker
or have the greatest product if you can’t get that
message through to the people who make decisions. Approaching organizations is in a whole
different league than approaching consumers.
All too often, solicitations to companies dead-end at the receptionist, secretary or administrative assistant who screen cold calls. I call these
WHO’S THE BOSS?
So, how do you get past the gatekeeper so you
can connect with a decision maker? For starters,
understand that influence is not always where
you may expect. Consider this example.
I once sat face-to-face with a high-level di-
rector of a sizeable organization. He told me I
was the only salesperson he had let into his of-
fice regarding the product I was selling. I was
surprised. I knew competition was fierce in this
market. Then, he told me that the reason he
had let me present to him was because I was
“nice” to his secretary.
Think about that.
He didn’t say it was because I was a great
salesperson or had a brilliant marketing ap-
proach. He didn’t say it was because the company
I was with had a great website or that our online
presence was outstanding. He said I got the ap-
pointment because I was “nice” to his secretary.
This is what happened: After speaking to the
secretary and requesting an appointment with her
boss, I sent a previous email to her boss but added
a sincere compliment about the secretary in the
first line of the email and then copied the secre-
tary. I had chosen to do something nice for the
secretary, whether or not I got the appointment.
When I complimented the secretary, I truly
wanted to help her with something that was im-
portant to her: her career. However, people
often feel a need to reciprocate; it’s human na-
ture. Because I helped the secretary with some-
thing that was important to her, she was willing
to help with something she thought was impor-
tant to me: getting an appointment with her
boss. It’s not rocket science, but using this princi-
ple has helped me get in front of many decision
makers in organizations ranging from small busi-
nesses to governments. Gatekeepers have more
power to connect you to the decision maker than
you know. You want them on your side.
Get Past the
10 ways to reach more decision makers faster
By EKSAyn AnDErSon