Mo asks Scott Winter: When was the moment that you realized that business development was great?
- Scott started his career off in sales with LexisNexis and that developed into a role in consulting. Eventually he made the switch to a product management position with Interaction where he focused on CRM and client relationships.
- Interaction is the world’s largest CRM system for law firms and by coming up in that environment, Scott learned a lot about the technical aspects of the software which helped him better serve his clients.
- Scott had the typical mindset about sales in college that most people have, but he reframed his perspective after getting some actual experience in sales positions.
- The one key moment when Scott realized that business development was a powerful tool for growth was after having a simple conversation with someone on a plan. Just listening carefully and remembering what he learned blew that person away when they met again many months later.
- Scott has a knack for having a conversation on any subject and being able to find a point of connection. He also tends to add notes in his phone of a particularly interesting detail (powerlifting, ironman training, etc.) and makes use of his CRM to keep track of everything.
- Remembering details about someone is an art and a science, but there are tools you can use to make it easier.
Mo asks Dennis Baltz: When did you realize that business development is something that would be interesting to you?
- Dennis’s interest in business development goes all the way back to his high school days in 1987, where he was trying to find people to participate in market studies. It was a tough gig and he had to stretch outside his comfort zone to get things done.
- Knowing that he had something of value to offer to the people gave him the confidence to ask for something they may not be initially open to. Dennis learned to be interested in the person first and think about the value he could provide, instead of assuming the ‘no’ right away.
- Dennis has been on all sides of the transaction when it comes to risk during his career, so that gives him some perspective on what potential buyers are looking for. Initial meetings are simply about identifying problems and how you can be helpful.
- Preparing for the meetings ahead of time is crucial to Dennis’s success. Following up usually involves finding resources or people to connect the prospect with that can help solve the problem in the meantime.
- Introducing techniques from another industry is a great way to appeal to a potential client’s desire for both safety and innovation.
- On the human side of things, Dennis realized that he needed to stay in front of clients at the beginning of the pandemic and that turned into a monthly blog post that he sends to clients and colleagues. Being open and vulnerable, and sharing some of the personal elements of his life, have had a tremendous impact.
Mo asks Andrew Cogar: When did you realize that business development was really important?
- It really clicked when Andrew started thinking about business development not as a means of getting business but as a means for the firm to get the business they need to forge their own path.
- After one particular project that went exceedingly well, Andrew understood that those kinds of projects could become a habit rather than a lucky break.
- The GrowBIG System is essentially about doing the right things so that you have control over the kinds of clients you work with. Being proactive gives you so much work that you can pick and choose the projects that you want most.
- It’s easier to be reactive on the front end because you don’t have to do the introspective work it takes to shape your vision and be proactive on finding the right business. It’s easier in the long term to adopt the right principles to attract the right clientele.
- Mo and Andrew do a review of their recent experience working together. In terms of business development, Andrew was simply looking to get to know Mo and the family and understand what he was looking for.
- As an architect, Andrew is hoping to gauge how open someone is to suggestions and that’s an intentional part of the conversation.
- At the end of the day, who Andrew works for and who he works with, has become more important to him and the firm than what he works on.
- Do a little research before a client meeting and come with a set of questions and follow-up questions for them. Don’t be afraid to give some ideas away during the meeting. When you give away a little, you get value back in the things you learn. If you go in with a sales pitch, you don’t learn anything. Show up with questions, not qualifications.
Mentioned in this Episode:
Scott Winter on LinkedIn
Visions of Home