I heard a radio phone in the other day which pitted two scientists against each other.
What struck me, was that both ‘experts’, eminent in the field, claimed sole ownership of the “facts”.
How could this be when both opinions were polar opposites?
Two pointers emerged. The first is to familiarise yourself with the excellent expert exposé from Noreena Hertz’s TED video.
The other, stems from a sales technique I was shown in America near the start of my career. It seeks to both confirm status with a summary and agree on how things stand. It starts with the phrase;
Let’s look at the facts.
Then you rattle off all the good things in your favour. Fact One. Fact Two. And so on.
Seeing this ‘live’ it struck me that the American tendency to overpower, one where prospects can be reduced to quibbling rabbits in headlights, should be toned down in favour of genuine consensus building.
Nevertheless, it does work. It’s a good way to pause proceedings and ensure you’re all going in the same direction.
Of course, one man’s fact is another’s fiction. Determining which is which could just well make the difference on the bid you’re working on.
Once you’ve cracked this, the next step is to separate fact from feeling. No one buys on a fact. They buy on their emotion.