Posts Tagged ‘speaker
Making Money w/ Security
I’ve just scheduled our next Making Money w/ Security workshop…if you’ve not been to this workshop, I highly recommend checking it out.
This is by far my most popular training class, and it’s all online for those who don’t have time to travel, or don’t have enough sale people in one location to host a live workshop. It doesn’t matter if you call on SMB or enterprise, those who have attended this workshop have told me, “It works!”
This is not generic training like you would find with a Sandlers or other common sales training program – it’s high-tech, network and system security specific, led by someone who has sold security solutions and develop security practice areas.
Wall Street Journal reported a few weeks ago that Cyber Security is one of the most highly sought after skills in our nation. Learn how to sell larger security projects that involve security strategy, assessment of risk, remediation, and ongoing managed security solutions. I’ll show you where to look, who to talk to, what to say, how to price, and how to close. It’s 3 days, 2 hrs each day – right at your desk.
You’ll receive a soft copy workbook, login instructions, and access to this live workshop. It’s not recorded, and it’s not a trainer. I conduct these sessions live, answer all of your questions directly, and provide one hour of 1-1 coaching after the session to help you apply these concepts to your personal business. Join me on May 13th, 2013, and I’ll help you make this a great year.
© 2013, David Stelzl
We completed our first day of security sales training, but more importantly, here’s an update on Bangalore pizza! On this trip I was happy to see that Marriott (my preferred hotel chain) finally has a hotel in Whitefield, just outside of Bangalore India. The last time I was here I wrote about the surprisingly great pizza at the Oberoi Hotel. I was disappointed to find that the Marriott does not have a pizza on their menu – however, when I showed up for breakfast yesterday, there was a pizza on the breakfast buffet! Notice the egg in the middle of this pizza…if you are looking for my expert opinion on this pizza, you’re out of luck – This is just a little too weird for me…so I opted for a picture instead. The crust looks pretty good for international pizza, but that’s as far as I can go. The good news is, the rest of the breakfast buffet was outstanding.
Our training session was a great experience for me. I love learning from sales teams around the world, hearing about their experiences and how different cultures approach the sales process. Last time I was here it seemed that the Indian run companies were not that interested in security – they felt like they had it covered and the threat was not that great. Things have changed. The tech business is going strong, and the level of security awareness is high. Our class focused on the systems engineer’s role in presales support…my goal here is to give them the tools they need to identify security opportunities emerging from their existing projects – mostly data center, VDI, and core infrastructure as well as mobility projects (BYOD).
The SE role is an important one – and with a little sales training, and some coaching on public speaking, this role can become a tremendous asset to the sales organization. And since most companies neglect giving their engineers this kind of training – those who do create a amazing competitive advantage.
The SE should be the bridge between highly complex technology and the business leader who doesn’t have time to wade through mounds of technical jargon. They need to make decisions. In a two day board meeting there might be 30 minutes on the agenda to review the company’s security posture. Most CIOs are not going to be able to accurately pull together the company’s position, provide accurate insights into the top threats, show how likely the company is to experience loss, and show whether the company’s security posture is trending up or down. IT most likely can’t provide this information either, in a format board members can consume. So who will be that bridge? It should be the presales systems engineer…
Over the next 12 months technology providers would be wise to add this skill set to their existing engineering group. It may make all the difference in the world.
© 2013, David Stelzl
Yesterday I met with over 60 business leaders in Lexington Kentucky, representing more than 40 companies, along with NetGain Technologies and representatives from Cisco Systems…I shared with them some of my major concerns in the area of cyber security for the coming 12 months. Studies show that over 80% of small business leaders are not concerned with security, feel they are pretty safe, and consider the Internet a critical part of their IT infrastructure. Yet, nearly the same number have no formal security plans, have no way of detecting an intrusion, and worse, 90% of Visas reported cyber incidences come out of small business.
At the end of our session, NetGain extended an offer to provide a some simple tests that would allow their guests to see if they have been under attack. The FBI tells us that it is often more than 14 months before this type of intrusion comes to light – often too late to recover. Some simple diagnostic tests can often prevent a disaster down the road. Just about every attendee agreed that this was a necessary next step in the right direction – over 70% scheduled right there in the meeting and will be conducting these tests over the coming three weeks. Several of the larger firms also committed to getting more user awareness training into the hands of their end-users. This is by far the biggest point of vulnerability and must be addressed by business if they plan to protect their data.
© 2013, David Stelzl
One of my clients in Tampa just completed a very successful marketing event…in fact, 90% of the CIOs who attended this lunch meeting signed up to have their data center infrastructure assessed. How did they do it?
In this case they had a former CIO do the speaking. Understanding the pressures on the CIO role is critical – things are rapidly changing for IT leadership. Every day the CIO journal (your are reading this, right?) is reporting on trends that are forcing CIOs to become business level participants. Rather than focusing on 5 9s up time and the next major OS upgrade, the new CIO has to be thinking, “How does my company become the next Amazon.com?”
At the end of their presentation they offered a complementary assessment. It’s important to note that this assessment is not really free – it’s complementary. In other words, it has value and is worth paying for. But as I explained to a senior VP of sales the other day, the trade off may be months of courting a new company. Which is cheaper, two or three days of intense assessment work, or 3 to 6 months of lunches and golf outings? They quickly agreed, the assessment makes sense.
© 2013, David Stelzl
Back from a week on the road – my last stop was at the Grand Geneva Resort & Spa in Lake Geneva, WI. Saturday night I met with over 30 sales people and their guests to talk about industry trends and sales relevance in the coming five years…If you’re watching the trends you know that Big Data, BYOD &Mobility, Cloud Technologies, and Social Business are all growing in popularity. My message centered around these topics and what kinds of presentations, data, and ideas are attracting CIOs and CISOs right now.
You can’t just sell disk…you must be able to talk Big Data! You don’t necessarily need the application to have the discussion. You do need to understand the applications and need within the organizations you call on. If you still don’t hear you clients talking about big data – chances are you are stuck at the IT/influencer level. In my talk I encouraged sales people to do 5 things:
1. Start thinking in terms of reducing risk and enabling greater productivity – not negotiating on price.
2. Seek out the asset owners – find the people who are shareholders or big producers and discover their needs.
3. Market through education – not manipulation.
4. Become an expert in either risk or operational efficiency – simply by learning the sound bites (discussed in an earlier post).
5. Propose results – not products.
These are simple things to do – things that every technology sales person should be doing. You can read more about them in my book titled: From Vendor to Adviser…available right here in my store or available through Amazon in soft cover or kindle.
© 2013, David Stelzl
Yesterday I spoke to Accuvant’s sales organization, sharing with them areas for growth and opportunity in the coming year. An article I read from the Wall Street Journal before taking the stage summarizes the need – A Transformative Time for Companies – and Their CIOs. In summary, CIOs are suddenly central to every major business decision…this is our time to move higher into the accounts we call on. But be prepared when you get there to offer significant value at the business level.
I also asked for a raise of hands on whose clients are talking about big data – this is a great question to ask your sales team. Those who don’t raise their hands are giving themselves away – they are are stuck at the IT level, because IT people are the only ones not talking about big data (at least in the larger accounts). An interesting way to segment an audience…
You can see from the picture above, I was also able to join in the fun – in the afternoon we did one of the best team-building exercises I’ve ever been a part of. We constructed over 30 miniature golf holes and then played 9 of them. These courses were constructed from non-perishable food items and then donated to the food bank. We also raised over $1700 in donations from those who participated. In the picture you can see the amazing hole my team constructed. I made the sign….
© 2013, David Stelzl
We completed our second day of the Making Money w/ Security Workshop today…one major failure among sales teams (and one we spent our time on today) is that of the corporate presentation. Have you ever considered how many sales presentations the average CIO sees over the course of a year? However many there are – it’s big. They’ve probably seen just about everything you can imagine – but the sad truth is, most of them look the same.
After class today, one attendee emailed me asking for some help on a presentation he is scheduled to give at his company’s sales meeting next week. It just so happens that I am also speaking at his company’s national sales meeting next week…
His goal, as I understand it, is to present something he might present to a customer. His company wants to see his version of the company sales message. No doubt, his marketing department has a standard set of slides they’ve equipped the sales team with – but chances are they look just like the competition’s. Perhaps they have a different template. Here’s what I told him:
- Start out with some sound bites – some hard hitting facts that get people thinking about the trends out there.
- From there, move into an emotionally charged story using my Noble Man story format (which I briefly describe in my Vendor to Adviser book). It should be an actual client story – one that looks at an individual trying to accomplish something, but up against some major challenges. Show how your company came alongside this person and helped them achieve something that might have been a complete failure had you not stepped in. I know their company has one of these…
- This creates a bridge into a series of things most are approaching incorrectly – but something your company has studied, is passionate about, and has mastered (Reference Jim Collins advice in Good to Great).
- End with the need to review something related within their organization…the assessment opportunity leads to justification, which leads to fee-based engagements. You’ll also be building a case for an annuity service along the way (assuming you are focusing on one of the 4 things buyers buy – another topic addressed in From Vendor to Adviser).
I should also mention – Make your slides colorful, using just a few words. Your message must be enthusiastic, emotional, and simple…your goal is to paint a picture of the value your team brings to a pressing situation…
How many sales presentations have you seen that you would want to see again? It has to be that good…is it possible? It is…
© 2013, David Stelzl
Yesterday I completed day 1 of the Making Money w/ Security Virtual Workshop. One of the topics we discussed is that of using sound bites effectively.
What are sound bites? Sound bites are short, factual statements, that come from solid sources. They communicate something serious, alarming, insightful, or amazing. They build credibility. When a sales rep is armed with numerous sound bites from credible sources, they appear to be well educated, well read, and in touch with the trends. Over time, having read and memorized enough sound bites, that person will be knowledgeable. After all, knowledge is gained mostly through the study of good books. Isn’t that what changed most of us over the four to six years we spent in college? Here’s a quick overview of the process…
1. Determine what you aim to be an expert in. What will you be a trusted adviser of? Let’s assume is securing mission critical information – the focus of this week’s workshop.
2. Study newsworthy sources and discover the trends – pick out the sound bites. “If you think U.S. Military computer networks are secure, think again.” Security experts report to the U.S. Senate committee – March 23, 2012.
3. Memorize these quotes – if you spend 15 minutes each day, scan the news, and pick out just one, you’ll have countless up-to-date quotes at your fingertips the next time you meet with a CIO.
4. Use these sound bites to communicate truths to executives. Their IT people are telling them “We’ve got it covered.” In fact, 71% of mid-size companies believe (because their IT people tell them), that everything is fine. 90% of Visa’s reported fraud cases come from this same group, and the FBI tells us that it takes at least 15 months before people realize they’ve been attacked.
5. What did I just do? I defeated the IT person’s argument by quoting the Wall Street Journal – that is the appropriate use of a sound bite. Rather than bickering with IT about how secure they are, simply pull out a sound bite that suggests that they have been infiltrated, and that they probably wouldn’t know – so how can they be sure? Who will the executive believe? It’s no longer my word against theirs – it’s IT vs. The Wall Street Journal report, the FBI, DoD…etc.
Having been on many security sales calls over the past 20 years, I can attest to this idea – it works. Executives don’t trust sales people, but they don’t trust IT either…they do trust experts, The Wall Street Journal, Gartner, etc. Your job is the persuade, not argue. Persuasion is “Guiding truth ar0und other people’s mental roadblocks.” (Quoted from The Character Training Institute). Discover the truths written by the experts, memorize them, and then guide them around these roadblocks that resist knowing how insecure the network really is.
© 2013, David Stelzl