3 Barriers to Enjoying the Present

There are 3 basic reasons we do not enjoy the present and these brain machinations keep us from enjoying the present and then potentially the future as well.

  • We are living too in the past [memory]
  • We are living too much in the future [dreaming of what is ahead]
  • We have a fear of change

Now for you and me it may not be that hard to reach our dreams,
But that magic feeling never seems to last.

And while the future’s there for anyone to change,

Don’t you know it seems

It would be easier sometimes to change the past.

[Jackson Browne; Fountain of Sorrow]

Too many of us fail to live in the present because it seems to be the nature of the human brain or mind to skip over what is happening and to dwell on the what-ifs of the past and/or the I-wills of the future.

If we could change the past as the lyrics say – would we? Would we make different choices? It’s an idea to ponder but in reality we can only change the future by changing the present choices – not actually undoing previous ones.

The past is easy to think about precisely because it already happened! We do not need to invent that reality. We replay events wondering what if we had acted differently or had not done a specific action or had done an action.

We can easily depress ourselves via this course of thinking because there is nothing we can do and we feel helpless.

Or we can think about the future and what we will do “when”

  • When we have enough money
  • When we are married
  • When we are happy
  • When we feel like doing [whatever it is]

Thinking ahead about “whens” is different than making actual plans for those “whens” or actually moving toward them.

And there are some “whens” that are too vague or too distant or too unrealistic to get us moving toward them.

Many of our “whens” are actually thoughts we use to protect ourselves from any real or imagined failures.

Which leads to the 3rd barrier – fear of change. We as humans like inertia – even if it is an inertia that keeps us stuck in an uncomfortable place. It is one of the odd conditions of being human that this happens.

So we remain rehashing the past or putting up future “whens” to keep us feeling safe rather than getting outside of our own minds and creating that change for our own futures.

How To Present Your Sales Proposal Like a Professional

Learn how to present your sales proposal like a pro. Here are 9 tactics that the best sales professionals in the world commonly use while presenting their sales proposals.

Know Your Audience
Your presentation should speak specifically to the industry, company and personal needs and interests of your client. Research your prospect before you present. Remember what makes them unique, learn their mission statement and values. Learn their products and services and how your solution helps them specifically.

Personalize Your Presentation
Recognize your audience by their first name. It personalizes the meeting which with all else equal, will improve your chances of winning the business. Learn about their positions in the company and who you are talking to. Always make eye contact throughout your presentation.

Set the Pace
People have a limited attention span. You must set the pace and keep your audience intrigued by presenting the critical information they are seeking. If you must present other information that is not critical, try creating a video or a PowerPoint to make it more interesting. This can help to hold your audience’s attention until you transition to your next critical key point.

State the Objective
Clearly state what the objective of your proposal is at the beginning of your presentation. Review the objective in the middle of your presentation after key points to reinforce the purpose of your key points. Finally, review your objective while concluding your presentation. Tell them, tell them what you told them and then remind them again.

Elicit Participation
It is a good idea to get people involved when they are deciding whether or not they are going to invest with you. This can help them learn more about your product, service, and company, which will build trust and confidence behind the decision to move forward with your proposal.

  • Ask questions
  • Invite them to ask their own questions
  • Ask them to relate to a scenario
  • Ask them to recall something
  • Ask their opinion
  • Ask their approval

Present Value
When people see value in a product, they are likely to purchase. Do not assume your audience sees the value, they don’t! Your proposal and presentation should show the client why this is important for them, what they will gain, what advantage this gives them and/or how revenue will increase or costs will decrease. A statement of value should be placed carefully throughout your presentation, at the beginning, before or after every key point and at the end.

Be Real
A genuinely caring attitude is the most important thing you can bring to a presentation. You must care about and pay attention to the people you are presenting to. Always be honest. A prospect will respect your honesty and feel more comfortable doing business with you even if the a piece of information you give them is not in their best interest. If you have prepared properly, you will have plenty of information that is in their best interest and disclosing information that is not will build the trust that is key to cultivating a relationship and making a sale.

Thank You!
Do not forget to thank your audience for their time, participation and consideration. You should thank them at the beginning of your presentation and at the end of your presentation.

Follow Up
Ask them when an appropriate time is for you to follow up. By doing this, you can take the guess work out of it. When you know they answer, you will know you are following up at the right time. You will not have to worry if you are following up too soon and being seen as pushy or anxious or too late and perhaps losing the business to someone else.

Leading and Managing – 5 Golden Rules For Presenting Technically Complex Information

If you are part of a profession or area of an organisation that is or is at least perceived to be complex, it can be challenging when it comes to presenting information. For example, when I worked in accountancy, there was a perception that it was really complex and in some cases people had a phobia when it comes to numbers. So what are some of the golden rules when it comes to presenting technically complex information?

Golden Rule 1: Think first about the audience

Chances are you will have some people who are pretty comfortable and complex receiving presentations from people in your area. When thinking about the audience, consider what it is they definitely need to know as opposed to the stuff that would be nice to know. When dealing with complex stuff I generally have found that the more you focus on the key stuff the less likely you are to lose people.

Golden Rule 2: Think about something similar that people can relate to

I generally found that if you can relate the thing you are presenting to something that people can relate to then it becomes much easier. I can recall when working in the NHS I had to explain a new funding system called payment by results. Essentially you were paid for the work you did and coded. I used the example of scanning your shopping to illustrate the similarity with coding. If the item does not get scanned the seller does not collect the money.

Golden Rule 3: Keep it jargon free

We all tend to get caught up in the jargon that goes with our particular area. If you are going to use technical terms then make sure you explain them but ideally avoid them all together.

Golden Rule 4: Focus on the key messages

People can only handle so much at any one time so focus on getting your key messages across. If for regulatory or other reasons you need to make people aware of certain things give them a handout and make reference to it in your presentation.

Golden Rule 5: Check understanding and leave plenty of time for questions

With complex stuff less is better than more. At the end make sure that people have understood and build in more time for people to ask their questions.

Bottom Line – Presenting technically complex stuff presents its own challenges and practice really does make a difference.