Partners in Performance Blog

PowerPoint Design Tips: How To Show Dates

When you must communicate a lot of dates in a presentation, how do you make them easy to understand without confusing your audience?

The easy way is to just list the dates in bullet point form. But this is not very effective.

Why? Because by listing the dates in bullet points, it’s not easy for the audience to find a date and be able to relate it to the other dates. So you might ask, does putting the dates in a table make it easier? At least it makes the dates easier to see, because they are all … Read More

Your PowerPoint Slides Impact Your Persuasion Factor

When delivering presentations, if you want to “WOW!” your audience and move them to action, pay more attention to your slides. The design of your slides is an overlooked opportunity for ramping up the persuasion factor to get real results: more ‘buy in’, more action, more sales.

In my UPFRONT Persuasion workshops, I see many presenters resort to the same old approach using boring, text heavy slides which serve then as crib notes. Then they joke about PowerPoint as a necessary evil. The real … Read More

How Listening and Sales Go Together

An often overlooked sales skill is listening. And I mean really listening. To the point of “zipping it!” Listening is a pre-requisite for persuasion. If your client or prospect doesn’ t feel heard, they will resist your offer.

Here’s what I tell my clients who want better sales results: Listen with the intention to hear. So often we fall into the bad habit of listening with the intention to answer without really hearing what’s said. This is flat out dangerous. It costs you sales.

For example, when coaching sales people on … Read More

Presentations: Do Your PowerPoint Slides Annoy People?

What are the top 3 things that annoy you in PowerPoint presentations? Dave Paradi, author of The Visual Slide Revolution, asked people this question in his research study. Here’s what he found:

Speaker reading slides – 73.8% Full sentences on the slides – 51.6% Text too small – 48.1%

If you want to use PowerPoint to your advantage then you need to:

Learn how to design slides for maximum impact on the audience Learn how to speak about your slides and … Read More

Presentations that Do NOT Persuade

Last week I was delivering a presentations skills workshop and was observing “Nancy” (name changed) deliver her presentation. Her content and delivery overall were quite good except for one big problem: she sounded more like a recording than a real person. She was using a ‘presentation voice.’ Nancy was not being herself.

With a bit of coaching, she began using her ‘real voice’ and in doing so, revealed a much more authentic voice that was engaging, passionate and … Read More

Pitching Disguised As Questions

In the work I do helping sales people to become more effective, we focus a lot on questioning skills. Let’s assume it’s your intent to ask questions in order to uncover your customer’s needs, likes, dislikes and perspectives. Here’s a typical question that is used by many sales professionals.

“If I could show you a way to easily solve your problem, would that be of interest to you?”

Let’s look at this question and examine why it isn’t effective.

Here are just a few reasons:

The intention behind the question is … Read More

Favourite Client Stories: How Jim’s Success Almost Got in His Way

Jim Bentley (name changed) is a well respected, seasoned sales professional with solid expertise in the financial services industry. He has long standing clients, with whom he enjoys excellent relationships. He is one of the top sales producers for his company. In spite of his sales success, he almost missed out on solidifying one of his best client relationships.

Jim participated in the Intentional Selling™ program as part of a company wide initiative. Part of the training process includes identifying limiting assumptions that might unconsciously block sales success. … Read More

Top Sales Errors: Why Pitching Product Doesn’t Work

Questions will help you persuade more powerfully than any other selling behaviour. Yet the number one error that I consistently see sales professionals make is not asking enough questions to clarify the needs of their clients.

In my sales training and coaching, I’ve seen even seasoned sales professionals lead with their product, solution or ideas rather than leading with questions. Pitching product (showing up and “throwing up”) is hoping that if I talk about my product enough, something will stick. But it will annoy, overwhelm and cause your client … Read More