Two things drive the UK stock market and investor confidence: Fear and Greed. Either one has the ability to send prices and currencies tumbling which in turn erodes confidence.
Seasoned investors will tell you that as a business owner, you need to look past the short-term bumps and keep focused on the long-term strategy of your business, but what if the event or events are protracted and wear down on confidence both in the City and for your employees?
Brexit’s effects have already chipped away at day-to-day commerce and employee’s lives. Whether it’s simple things like the price of petrol or a sausage roll at the high street bakery, or more major things like mortgage interest rates. Left to fester for long enough, the nation becomes weary and despondent from hearing all the negative back and forth over the stalemate caused by Brexit.
It’s hard not to get political over such a big issue as Brexit but there is a clear lesson to be drawn from the chaos; leadership is directly connected to confidence. Politicians managing the Brexit deal are simply not confident of their ability to see through something that they fundamentally do not believe in.
Likewise, your workforce won’t feel confident if they think that you don’t have a plan in place to help secure their long-term future.
New business becomes harder to win and the marketing industry retrenches and pulls back from plans because it lacks confidence. Marketing budgets are an indicator of market confidence.
Your role in new business is to help restore confidence and there are many ways to do this, but one surefire way to help build confidence in your new business activity is to Add Value.
The long tail of new business development gets even longer during low-energy times caused by events such as Brexit. Budgets are scaled back and only those imperative projects get underway.
Adding value to existing activity by knowing what your prospects are doing and why, is crucial. In your limited opportunities to engage a new business prospect, instilling confidence by demonstrating you are aware of what needs to be done and what projects are underway is a surefire way of letting your prospect know they are dealing with someone who can add value. If not now, then later. This means delivering on your promises. If you schedule a call, do not miss it, even if they do. If you schedule a meeting, get straight to the point, acknowledge you know their time is limited and give them facts, numbers and as much proof as you can deliver. Who wants to leave things to chance in a downturn? These uncertain times are a perfect chance to hone your ability to convey a sales point in a concise and direct manner.
Adding value might also mean extending opportunities to prospects by including them in ongoing activities that may benefit them. A rising tide floats all boats and inviting them to a networking event you are already going to might help build a case for your pitch. This doesn’t mean trying to be their friend but it does mean helping them do things that help their business will reflect well on you further down the line.
In new business, you can afford the time to shore up existing prospects and making each-and-every outreach meaningful. Make every interaction count by adding value to the transaction. Stand out by being helpful and it will pay dividends at a time when all your competitors are doing is shouting like a carnival barker on a street corner.
Keith Smith – Owner of TheAdvertist.com
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