Business Development

One of the most inspiring business books of the last couple of years was Stephen Bayley’s Life’s a Pitch in which he argues that how you pitch your ideas and how you pitch yourself will determine the course of your life. It’s the same in business.

Networking For Success

Networking is about connecting with people internally and externally to share information and build mutually beneficial relationships. Getting one or two new contacts at an event can make it all worthwhile. Yet rarely do we make the best use of a crowded room. These two practical courses show you how to develop your network and overcome feeling daunted when approaching strangers, how to project confidence and get the most out of conversations.

Strategic Networking will benefit anyone who needs to expand their network. Working the Room is aimed at those who find it difficult to get value out of networking or want to make useful contacts at events.

  • Recognise where the gaps are in your network and learn how to increase it
  • Evaluate which networks to join or events to attend
  • Feel more confi dent and willing to 'work a room'
  • Know how to join conversations, build rapport and develop lively conversations
  • Rehearse a crisp, clear way to introduce yourself so others want to get to know you
  • Join and leave groups effortlessly

Developing the networking mindset

  • Networking good practice and what gets in the way
  • The value of formal and informal networks
  • Getting into a positive frame of mind

Get the most from your networks

  • Mapping your existing network
  • Identifying gaps and developing a plan to build contacts that help you achieve your goals

Networking in action

  • Get the most out of your contact time with others
  • On the phone or face-to-face

Following up – making the strategy work

  • How and when to follow up
  • Keeping in contact without being pushy
  • Remember who people are and what you promised

Working the room

  • Getting the most out of an event
  • How to join a group effectively
  • Techniques to overcome fear of rejection
  • Make a good impression and connect with others
  • How to break the ice and what to do to make lively conversation with people

Introducing yourself

  • What to include in an Elevator Pitch that gives others something to work with
  • Bring what you do to life and focus on the benefits
  • When and how to move from small talk to smart talk

Building a relationship

  • Being a word detective and using certain questions to build closer relationships
  • Remembering names and faces
  • Knowing when and how to move on in an event
  • Strategies for keeping in touch

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    Selling Over The Phone

    Accordion Sample Description

    Unless you let people know how good your product or service is they won't be able to benefit from it. Whether you pale at the thought of making calls or welcome the challenge it brings, the phone is a crucial way of contacting clients and prospects. Good techniques increase the number of opportunities in your pipeline and result in more sales. This highly interactive and practical course will give you the essential skills of telephone selling.

    This course is suitable for anyone in a sales or telesales role who wants to improve their skills or develop their confidence. No previous experience is required.

    • Connect with clients on a personal level and quickly find out what matters most to them
    • Understand and manage your own and your client's emotional state
    • More confidence in contacting prospects and clients
    • Acquire skills and techniques for successfully handling tough questions in a positive manner
    • Increase your awareness of the impact your behaviour has on other people
    • Win more business and improve profits

    Identify leads and prospects easily

    • Essential steps to take from the start, to follow up and confirm agreed action
    • Create the right environment to achieve success

    Create the right mindset and get the right results

    • How to make sure your beliefs support your future success – and how to eliminate beliefs that hold you back

    Build and maintain rapport with anyone

    • Building trust and listening to what the client says
    • Consider how you come across from the client's perspective
    • Notice, and pick up on, reactions and buying signals

    Make clients feel valued and understood

    • Build dialogue and quickly assess a client's needs
    • Assess what's important to your client
    • Letting them know you understand their needs

    Get on with gatekeepers

    • Build rapport and get the purse-string holder with authority to buy
    • Come across as professional and someone people want to do business with

    Access and maintain a resourceful emotional state

    • Staying focused on your objective
    • Increase awareness of the effect you have on others
    • Manage procrastination and maintain motivation

    Successfully handle tough questions and objections

    • Getting the appointment
    • Remaining in control
    • Identifying and overcoming objections
    • Asking for the business and summarising agreements

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      Selling Over The Phone

      The best sales people are a valuable resource to any company not only for the revenue they generate but also because they are trusted advisers to their clients. Highly skilled consultative sales people find it easier to get people to respond to their calls and build lasting relationships. This highly practical and intensive course will help your sales team understand their clients' needs. This means your company will benefit from strong and fruitful client relationships built on trust.

      Sales executives, account managers, those moving into a consultative sales role or who need to sell as part of their current role will benefit from attending.

      • Use a consultative selling approach with ease
      • Get off to a great start and keep the momentum going
      • Build rapport effortlessly and gain your prospect's trust
      • Get to the heart of your client's business with powerful questions and active listening
      • Get to grips with their business drivers
      • Use an effective sales structure to keep you on track
      • Quickly detect and act upon buying signals
      • Acquire techniques for overcoming objections
      • Deliver what your client wants and close the sale

      What is consultative selling?

      • What consultative selling is and why it's more effective than other approaches
      • Qualities and mindset of great consultative salespeople

      What to do before the sales meeting

      • Gathering information and clarifying your outcome
      • 'Traffic Lights' – how to evaluate an effective meeting

      Making the first five minutes count

      • The Connect and Set technique – build rapport and gain client commitment throughout the meeting

      Improve your questioning and listening

      • Probing to gain deeper insights into the prospect's or client's situation and keep the conversation flowing
      • Being present and developing active listening skills
      • How to assess where you are in the sales process

      Harness the power of 'gap' analysis

      • Identifying and amplifying the gap between where they are and where they want to be
      • Getting the prospect to feel 'pain' at the thought of not having their needs met

      Recognising buying signals

      • Reading the other person and picking up buying signals

      Overcoming objections

      • Viewing objections as buying signals
      • The Objection Handling Loop

      Closing the sale

      • Why people sometimes find closing daunting
      • Traps to avoid, such as closing too early

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        Negotitaion skills

        Like it or not, in today's increasingly competitive markets negotiation is part of everyday life. It can be difficult to maintain a balance between the relationship and agreeing a good deal. Our tried and tested negotiation techniques can be used in a wide variety of business situations and are aimed at ensuring you increase your profits and achieve a win-win result. We will show you how to become a better negotiator and achieve great results

        This course is designed for buyers and purchasers, sales people, relationship managers – in fact anyone who negotiates will benefit from attending.

        • Learn how to use our systematic approach to negotiating and achieve a win-win
        • Acquire a solid set of planning skills and understand the negotiable range
        • Enhance your communication and influencing skills to achieve successful results
        • Learn new strategies and tactics for overcoming conflict and handling objections
        • Obtain an inventory of tactics to draw upon and a toolbox of things that can be traded
        • Receive detailed feedback on your negotiation style
        • Increase your confidence to negotiate more often in any business situation

        What is negotiation

        • Defining effective negotiation – it's about dialogue
        • A five-stage systematic approach to negotiation
        • The seven principles of negotiation and understanding the negotiable range

        Prepare well for any negotiation

        • What to consider when planning strategies from an individual and team perspective
        • Being clear about objectives, researching the other party and their likely position
        • Developing bargaining parameters and identifying a fall-back position

        Sharpen your core negotiation skills

        • Build rapport and get off to a good start
        • How to keep going when the going gets tough
        • Drawing out needs and identifying tradeables

        Conduct the negotiation effectively

        • Know how to read the other party and adapt accordingly
        • Control the process and analyse the other party's strengths and weaknesses

        Personal insight, practice and working in teams

        • How personal attitudes negatively impact success
        • Practice and receive feedback on your skills
        • Team negotiations

        Achieve the result you want when closing

        • The value of concessions and when to make them
        • Closing successfully & putting the outcome in writing

        Take objections in your stride – and know what to do if the negotiation breaks down

        • Identify and deal with potential stumbling blocks
        • Why negotiations sometimes break down and how to avoid it happening

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          Presenting & Winning Pitches

          You're facing a group of decision makers and need to make a positive impression. How do you put your message across in a way that differentiates you from the crowd? Winning pitches is vital to the success of many organisations, yet all too often the process is rushed, the participants are unprepared and the outcome is unsatisfactory. It's not the best firms that are the most successful, it's the best sold. The difference between winning and losing pitches is often marginal, with thousands if not millions of pounds at risk and hours of your time. This course shows you how to increase your conversion rate of new business pitches.

          Anyone who pitches for work or needs to practise for a future pitch. This course is also targeted at anyone who can't afford to keep losing pitches.

          • Create the right impression at a new business pitch
          • Improve the way you use your voice and body language to create positive impact and build rapport
          • Acquire essential steps for success in team presentations
          • Target your pitch on client concerns and issues
          • Engage your audience and make your messages stick
          • Handle questions effectively, individually and as a team
          • Win more business and create lasting relationships

          Improve the impact you make

          • How to create a positive and enthusiastic impression through effective use of voice and body language
          • Enhance your rapport skills and connect with your audience

          Customer and competitor analysis

          • Make the most of the pre-pitch contact and get a good brief
          • Understand your customer's drivers and criteria
          • What to look for when comparing your competitors' strengths and weaknesses with your own

          Essential steps of planning a winning pitch

          • Agreeing key messages and roles in team pitches
          • Turning messages into benefit statements
          • Starting strongly and finishing positively
          • Structuring your content for the listeners
          • Bringing material to life with relevant examples

          Selling in practice

          • Create a winning pitch that your audience will buy because they believe in you
          • Engage your audience and make your messages memorable
          • Manage the handovers when pitching in a team
          • Hints and tips on selling ideas

          Handle questions well

          • Anticipate questions and respond to them confidently and with empathy
          • How to cope with challenges and interruptions and handling objections

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            Support For Winning Live Pitches

            How much preparation do you do? And what kind? All too frequently pitch teams don't deliver because of lack of rehearsal or coaching on how to lift performance to the next level. Pitches take time to create and energy to deliver. They also take a lot of planning if you want to come across as an integrated team with a coherent and compelling message. If you don't win, you've lost a valuable source of business worth thousands or even millions of pounds and hours of work. Even worse, you may have created a negative impact in the mind of the client. Through rehearsal and feedback you increase your ROI by winning pitches and creating the impact you want.

            This is for people who need help in pitching for new business or in maintaining existing business in the face of competition. You may have worked together before or be part of a consortium team and need to come across seamlessly and professionally with clear and consistent messages.

            • Get buy-in by focusing on client needs
            • Create the right impression at a new business pitch
            • Demonstrate you can work as an integrated team
            • Iron out weak spots in content, capability or delivery
            • Techniques for making your pitch memorable
            • Leverage existing relationships to mutual advantage
            • Agree a question handling process that works
            • Win more business and create great relationships

            We can help you from the earliest stages right through the whole pitch process, or just at the critical rehearsal stage. We've worked on pitches (large and small) for local through to global projects, formal and informal, in processes that last a week to two years. Our goal is to help you differentiate and stand out from the crowd so you win more pitches.

            Stage One: Discussion and planning

            • Stakeholder analysis – their needs and concerns and what you can offer to match their requirements
            • Clarifying missing information and obtaining it
            • How to make the pitch memorable and engaging

            Stage Two: Team rehearsal

            • Clear, relevant messages that demonstrate benefits
            • The written proposal vs the presentation
            • Agreeing who will present and key roles
            • Strong starts, clear structure and memorable finishes

            Stage Three: Full run-through

            • Make sure the team comes across as seamless and cohesive
            • Check speakers present with impact, authority and enthusiasm
            • Practise smooth handovers and introductions
            • Making a pitch client-focused, engaging and memorable
            • Ensure the team handles the question process well

            Stage Four: Post pitch

              Incorporate learning into future pitches

            Support For Winning Live Pitches

            How strong are the relationships you have with your clients? What feedback do you get from your customers? The strength of your relationships can make a huge difference to getting new business referrals, to growing the size of client projects and to ensuring projects run smoothly. You can waste a lot of time in all three areas without the help of those you work with. This practical and business-focused course enables you to get greater clarity about what your customers want and what they value about their relationship with you.

            TThis course is ideal for people with some experience in a Relationship/Account Manager or Business Development role. It's perfect for those who want new insights and techniques for building stronger relationships to develop new business, and balancing expectations with multiple accounts.

            • Know what a key account is and identify your key accounts
            • Create or refine your key account development plans
            • Deepen your understanding of clients' perspectives
            • Match your behavioural style to your clients' styles
            • Win people over, build trust and make a positive impact
            • Gain important insights into the psychology of buying
            • Receive valuable feedback on your relationship skills
            • Create a plan to improve your client relationship management

            What makes a client relationship successful?

            • Why trust is crucial to personal and organisational success
            • The ingredients of a successful client relationship

            Client feedback (optional)

            • Participants review individual reports (pre-work) containing feedback from personal clients
            • What makes some relationships work better than others?
            • How to build client ambassadors and increase trust

            The Three Vs or channels of communication

            • How communication is affected when the visual disappears (telephone) and when the vocal disappears (email)

            What are Key Accounts and why are they important?

            • Identifying your key accounts
            • Benchmark best practice for improved results and relationships
            • The core principles of key account management

            Creating a strategy to build strong client relationships

            • Creating (or refining) your key account development plan
            • The correlation between relationship value and time spent
            • Why keeping in touch with your clients is essential

            Networking – add depth to existing/new contacts

            • Taking a strategic approach to broadening the number of contacts within an organisation
            • Getting the best out of formal events/conferences


            • Maister's Trust Equation: Trust = Credibility + Reliability + Intimacy ÷ Self Interest
            • Assess the level of trust you have within several of your key accounts relationships

            Rapport and why it's vital for success in relationships

            • How to create and maintain rapport with others

            Behavioural styles and relationships

            • Brief overview of different behavioural styles
            • How to adjust your approach to match a client's style

            Handle demanding clients

            • Techniques and strategies for handling 'difficult' clients
            • Putting yourself in your client's position

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