Have you ever stopped and wondered about why the number 3 has always seemed to have a special place in people’s hearts. We’ve all heard sayings like “Third time is the charm.” or “Good things come in threes.” Do you remember the basic formula for writing in elementary and middle school? It’s introduction, three main points, three sub-points for each main point, and conclusion, right?
If you’ve ever been through GrowBIG® Training, you’ll remember how we highlighted the importance of consciously creating positive interactions with your clients. You should also know that negative experiences tend to be much more memorable and powerful than positive ones. In fact, some behavioral science research has suggested that it can take four positive experiences to overcome a single negative experience. Obviously, it is much easier to make a good impression up front instead of trying to play reputational “catch up.”
Every business development professional has experienced times when clients voiced objections about the deal they are trying to close on. From the pricing seeming high to project deadline qualms, it is inevitable that prospects and clients are going to have concerns at some point during the Build It Together stage. The real test of mettle for BD professionals isn’t how they avoid objections; it’s how they overcome them.
Business development is all about building great relationships with your clients. It’s not just landing the project; you have to always be moving your clients toward becoming Raving Fans. One of BIG’s favorite tools to do this is the Asset, which is any tangible (or web-based), value-providing item that you can give to your clients and prospects and move them down the Path to a Raving Fan.
Take a minute and visualize the last great “first interaction” you had with someone – a time when you met someone and something just clicked. Try to remember what made it special. Was it the conversation topic? Was it something you said? The root answer, probably, is that you related to the other person.
It seems like everyone is an expert multitasker nowadays (or at least they think they are). Businesspeople are no exception. How many times have you seen professionals manage their email and work on other important To-Do’s during a meeting? Multitasking, however, goes beyond using technology to stay connected. For our purposes, multitasking just means dividing one’s focus in order to accomplish several things concurrently.
When you hear the word “hedgehog,” what is the first thing that jumps to mind?
If you’re like most people, you’ll see a small, spiny animal floating around in your imagination. At the same time, you may be wondering what in the world this has to do with business, unless you work in a zoo, perhaps. The answer – probably more than you would guess.
Here at BIG, there are a couple key business books that we think contain a lot of pertinent, actionable wisdom. One of these is Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…. And Others Don’t by Jim Collins. Within the book that describes the key common characteristics of “good-to-great” companies, Collins dedicates an entire chapter a principle that he relates to (you guessed it) a hedgehog.
Being a hedgehog is all about finding simplicity in a complex world.
CorporateINTL, a U.K. based international business magazine, has named Bunnell Idea Group the “Business Development Strategy Consulting Firm of the Year.” CorporateINTL is a leading, monthly publication for business leaders and financiers, providing key insights and commentary on emerging markets and domestic and international business.
According to CorporateINTL, it did an extensive search over a six month period, compiling nominations from over one million professionals involved in business. The nominations were provided to a small panel of judges who made the final decision.
Bunnell Idea Group's achievement is due to the experience and knowledge of founder Mo Bunnell, as well as the outstanding talent of our team of GrowBIG® facilitators.
“We have positioned ourselves to be a leading business development consulting firm in Atlanta and beyond, and offer clients a sophisticated business development system that helps them grow their business ,” said Mo Bunnell. “We are honored that CorpINTL has recognized our hard work.”
Mr. Bunnell is an authority on business development strategy, integration and effectiveness. Mr. Bunnell is the author and developer of the GrowBIG® Integrated System - a comprehensive business development methodology that drives successful revenue growth. BIG has over 100 clients including major product companies, global confectionery companies, top law firms, accounting firms, financial service firms, management consulting firms and insurance brokerage firms. Mr. Bunnell received a B.S. in Actuarial Science with a minor in Business Management from Ball State University. He is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and Member of the American Academy of Actuaries.
Should we focus on going from bad to good, or from good to great?
Within GrowBIG® Achieve, one of the keys to motivating people is to focus on the positive. As part of the program, we teach that positive feedback results in more of the desired behavior, while negative feedback results in less of the behavior we desire. In practice, this means praising your employees for great performance. The real answer to the motivation dilemma is to focus on the good things that people are doing within your organization. Other members inside your organization, when they see their coworkers being praised, will in turn be motivated to improve their own performance in hopes of also being praised. The great aspect of this approach is that is true of all members of your organization, regardless of whether they are in the top, middle, or bottom tier at that specific moment.
As a part of our Achieve team meetings, performance metrics for each team member are displayed publicly. This is an important part of our program – to hold people accountable for completing BD actions that they have assigned themselves.
As Doctor Seuss so wisely put it, "The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go."
Here at BIG, some of our favorite things to read are blogs. The great thing about them is that they are short and sweet and they come packed with great insight.
Another great aspect of blogs is that you can tailor your list of favorites to fit your specific wants and needs. As a company, we tend to follow blogs that have to do with strategy, design, new technology, behavioral science, behavioral economics, how people change and other topics that interest us and help us to add more value while we deliver GrowBIG® to our clients.
The key is to find information that interests you, even if it doesn’t necessarily relate to your specific business.
We’ve found that it’s very helpful to automate your blog reading technology and process.
Have you ever wondered why the tomato you grew yourself always tastes just a little sweeter than the one you bought at the grocery store? Or maybe why a meal you cooked yourself always seems better than one you ordered at a restaurant?
The answer to these questions could be the fact that you have a green thumb or a preternatural talent in the kitchen, but more than likely it has something to do with a simple phenomenon that had been dubbed the “IKEA Effect”. This idea, which has been researched by professors from Duke, Harvard, and the University of California, basically says that individuals naturally see things they helped create as more valuable or desirable. The "IKEA Effect" explains the increase in valuation we place on products we build ourselves.
Here’s a good example of this phenomenon in action:
One of the biggest problems in business development is getting excited about selling yourself and your product. That sounds counter intuitive, but it's true. What we should be getting excited about is the opposite of this. We should be getting excited about what our clients and prospective clients want to accomplish.
We have to start with the client and work backwards to how we can help them. And, if we can't help them as an organization, we can help them find someone who can.