Smart Gets Paid Podcast Transcript
You're listening to the Smart Gets Paid Podcast with me, Leah Neaderthal. I help women land higher paying clients in their B2B consulting and coaching businesses, but I've never been a sales person. My background is in corporate marketing. And when I started my first consulting business, I learned pretty quickly that it's about a thousand times harder to sell your own stuff than it is to sell someone else's. So I taught myself how to do it, and I created a sales approach that feels comfortable, makes you feel confident, and it works consistently. And now I teach women how to land higher paying clients in their B2B consulting and coaching businesses. So whether your client contracts are $2,000 or $200,000, if you want to work with more of the clients you love, do more of the work you love, and get paid more than you ever imagined. Then you're in the right place. Let's do it together. Welcome to Smart Gets Paid.
Hey there. Leah here and thanks for joining me for this episode of the Smart Gets Paid Podcast. So I was thinking back to a year or so ago around when it was clear that the pandemic was going to be serious. And I remember the day was March 16th, when my wife and I were sitting on our couch in pandemic hotspot, Brooklyn, and we looked at each other and said, “we have to get out of here”. Our son was six months old and we live in an apartment building, which while it's not huge, it does mean that we interact with a handful of people just coming and going. And we were scared for ourselves and our son. So we packed up as much as we could. All of our food, as much clothing as we can take everything our son would need. And we drove out to my wife's parents' house on Long Island where we stayed for the next six months.
And I remember the actual date because it was two days before my 40th birthday. I was going to celebrate my birthday with friends who were coming in from all over the U.S. and we were going to go see the Alanis Morissette musical, Jagged Little Pill, on Broadway and then have an awesome weekend. Of course, that didn't happen. As you probably remember, all travel was canceled. And then Broadway went dark. And my wife and I ended up celebrating my 40th birthday with pizza and cupcakes in that house on Long Island. Basically collapsing after a frantic day of trying to do a full day of work without childcare. Even now, it makes me anxious just remembering it. And I know that we were lucky. We are lucky and that's totally true.
And two things can be true at the same time; which is that we're lucky and that time was awful because everything was thrown into disarray. Being away from her home, being without our stuff, being without childcare. And that was the time when we thought we could still kind of continue normal life. Remember that? But that's the word I keep thinking about disarray and the pandemic has thrown a lot of businesses into disarray. And that's a situation with a woman I'm talking to in today's call. She's a leadership consultant who works with mid-sized companies, and she's going through a few transitions at the same time. She's going from one type of work to another type of work that she truly wants to be doing. She's going from having a full client base to a lot of her projects put on pause, and she has to figure out how to get more work. And she's doing it all in a pandemic when her clients are freaking out. And in the call you're going to hear, it's prompting her to ask the two biggest questions in selling: how do I talk about my work and how do I sell it? I mean, these are the fundamental questions in business, and I still hear the pandemic makes the answer to these questions even more important. So I want to say a special thank you to this client for allowing me to share this conversation with you. Take a listen and at the end I'll come back and share how you can apply a lesson from this call to your business.
This episode is sponsored by the One Page Sales Strategy. So when you think of a business development strategy for a consulting or coaching business, you might picture a complicated flow chart with boxes and arrows and lots of steps, but it actually doesn't have to be complicated. In fact, the strategy that powers your entire consulting or coaching business, your work, and your revenue can be just one page. And when you have that strategy, you can start to clearly see where to spend your time, turn off shiny object syndrome, and get to work getting the clients you want in your business. Because if you're like the women I work with, you're not afraid of hard work, but you want it to be the right work. So whether you already work with businesses as your clients, or if you want to start, get your copy of the One Page Sales Strategy and start to create your simple, elegant sales strategy for your consulting or coaching business. Get yours today at onepagesalesstrategy.com.
What was the impetus for this call?
So, yeah, you and I actually spoke, goodness, it was probably about two years ago, maybe. And I've kind of been following you a little bit on LinkedIn and you popped up with the B2B clients, now that they can still sell. And it really intrigued me because I'm like, I really would love to get into a new perspective on this because I do feel like people are still buying and, you know, you shouldn't have to slow down what you're trying to offer as long as you're offering it with the right messaging. And so after I attended that session, I guess a couple of weeks ago, I was super happy that you had a similar stance and I was really happy that you agreed. Like we need to continue to sell. We need to maybe change your messaging a little bit, but don't stop. Don't slow down. So.
Yeah, it doesn't serve anybody if your business goes out of business.
Tell me where we can focus them most, but will be the most valuable for you today.
Yeah, so I think for me is trying to figure out how to position my services and my offerings now, so that people are intrigued and the conversations are warmed up and begin and hopefully start to land. Most of my organizational work has halted. They’ve pulled back or I was getting ready to sign with a couple of companies and everybody's put everything on hold. So I need to re-warm up relationships and get people re-engaged with the work that I do. The kicker is that I also was in the process of shifting my focus. So my background is agile technology and agile coaching. That's been the window and the door to get me into work.
But I was in the process of trying to shift my focus to really be more on leadership teams. And it's a little bit of a different niche because it's not leaders and their teams, it's actually leadership teams. So the divine intervention of whatever has brought me to, whenever I go into an organization, I end up spending time with all the leaders of either a company or a department. And we spend a lot of time working together on either challenges or they want to go through a transformation, or I do a lot of facilitation. And I think, well, the reason they bring me in is one I'm pragmatic. And I'm also very honest and give them very honest feedback and observations. So that's really what I want to lead with in my coaching. So this all has happened at a very interesting time because I was going to take you to and really kind of start to pivot and focus and shift and lead with that messaging. So I'm trying to figure out how to get the right message and also get people interested and engaged now to bring me in, to do work with them. So that's what I would love to spend time on if that's helpful.
Yeah. So I think that now isn't really an interesting time for that shift because leaders are being asked to do things and lead in ways that they've never had to before. And so if you can provide some outside perspective, outside expertise, even if you've been doing this for some but you've been doing it for a long time, that's going to provide the support that leaders need. It's just a question of how do you message it right now? Talk to me about why somebody would be interested in working with any expert, you know, why would somebody be interested in this in general? And then let's sort of take it to the right now point.
So I find that people one, they like having me come in because it's a third party facilitating conversation. The other is why people, I think, enjoy having me come in and work with them, because they're tied to other things. I'm very honest. And do they like to being able to cut out some of those elephants in the room and talking about them where as potentially like the political correctness of organizations, you have to be very careful. Right? So I'm not afraid to say, you know, I'm sensing that there's a lot of tension going on here. What's going on between business and IT? Right? So a lot of times they will, they'll bring me in to help, to kind of break down and call out some of the things that are happening.
Talk to me also about the outcomes of this work and not like the specific decisions that might get made, you know, for example, a transformation plan or what have you. Talk to me about when you work with teams, how are they different in the end? What can they do that they can't currently do? Or are they on track to some sort of negative things that you will help them avoid?
Yeah. So the outcomes typically see is that they're able to have way more transparent conversations. They're able to bring themselves to talk about an issue openly and really be honest with each other. So they're able to really talk about the bigger problems in the organization and start to get through them. They also feel like all the things that they know are happening under the surface are now brought up. Those are some of the outcomes that they're looking for is, how do we really get more transparent and talk about some of the tougher things and also talk about where we need to go to make our organization stronger.
And when you can have those conversations, those honest conversations, you can be more transparent. Then what happens? What can they really do if they can have conversations? If they can be honest? If you can face the elements in the room and have the real conversations that need to be conducted, then what can the team do?
Yeah. So then we actually see the organization becoming more high-performing, right. So they get the results that they're looking for. They get the outcomes that they're looking for. They're able to make tough decisions together and they walk away aligned and not, you know, saying, well we agree to this, but I didn't really agree to this. So we do a lot of that kind of work that builds a stronger organization or department, or depending on what level I'm at within the organization.
Yeah. Okay. I can totally see this. So and why is this important right now, today, given everything that's going on?
Yeah. So these teams and organizations are having to make really tough decisions and they're trying to figure out how do we continue to operate, make money and keep our people either working or not be able to reduce depending on the size of the organization, not be able to reduce the workforce. So there's different sizes, different tiers, right? The midsize ones are all, you know, a lot of them have had to go through cuts. Not only in contractors, which is what I'm feeling, but also in workforce and employees, right. What's going on right now is going to drastically change what they originally planned, what happened for the year. And so they're really having to come together and make decisions together and be aligned on how they're going to message to their groups, into their organizations.
Okay. So I think that, and I think all of that is right. When you can start with what we've just talked about, that's how you go from a vitamin to a painkiller, which is, I know what you put in your questionnaire. How do you get from the vitamin to the painkiller? Because you're no longer, you know, an agile coach. Right. That would be a very tactical way of talking about it. There's really no sort of value embedded in that when you start with the value that you have just outlined here, that's how you become a painkiller. So it's a difference between saying, you know, I'm a CTI certified agile coach. Right. Versus let's just pick something that you shared here, you know, I help leadership teams make clear decisions in uncharted territory. So if you were a member of a leadership team, which would sound more enticing?
Yeah, the latter obviously like, I don't need an agile coach right now. I need to be able to make decisions. Right.
Exactly. And the truth is that is how people think in all, like, in normal times. Right. But that is even more important now. So that's, I think, a good starting point for how to re-message or sort of message for the first time, this direction that you want to go. And so talk to me about what's coming up for you right now.
So I agree completely. I think the challenge I have is that the folks that know me know that I do that well. Right. However, I have so much history and background in agile that I struggle. I think I struggle with making that pivot to say, okay, I can bring all the agile values and principles. And we use, I use a lot of that in my work with folks, but it's not what I lead with.
So it's what do you lead with?
Well, unfortunately right now I lead with, I lead with agility, with agile coaching.
So I would argue that it's not a pivot. And maybe it's just a semantic thing, but to me, pivot means like I'm going in a totally different direction. I have, I'm sort of using all these different tools that I've been using before. I say, what if this was just sort of turning the prism a little bit. Okay. And taking everything that you have and do, and the tools that you know, that work and your experience and all that, and just applying it to a different problem. Now we're just leading with value. And pointing all these services and these tools at the problem of, for example, helping leaders make clear, difficult decisions in completely uncharted territory.
Right. So I guess the challenge isn't how do you get them when you start to reach out and you, you lead with us, right. How do they know that? How do they start to buy from you to say, yeah, we need this person to do this.
They buy it really the way that they would buy anything else, which is, especially for the people that you're working with, there is no sort of, “okay, I help people make tough decisions”. You know, like, “hire me”. Right. And there is no sort of reaching out and being like, “got some tough decisions to make? I can help you make tough decisions”, right? The way that your clients and all B2B clients, and really all clients make decisions is it has to be an education process. So they have to understand, what does it mean to have help making tough decisions? How do I know if my team has a hard time making decisions? What other sort of ways of looking at this, where they have to understand that they have the problem. You can solve that. If the problem is solved, their life will be so much better. And how to, how to move forward. And that does take some time. It can take anywhere from three to 18 months.
For a sales cycle. So the best way to help people understand that is you have to get in front of them often. I wish it were the case that it could be like, all right, I'm solving the problems now. Here we go, bring me in. All right, ready? You got some problems?
So, well everyone’s got problems right?
You know, and another thing about how you help people actually buy is you're very clear on the people that you work with and the types of problems that you are, the type of problem that you're solving. So for example, if you said, let's say you're like, I don't know, nutrition coach or whatever. And you're like, “I help people eat better”, that sort of talks to everyone and no one. How do you know if you, if this person is for you? So as opposed to, if you were a nutrition coach who said, “I help elite athletes get into, have higher performance and shave a minute off their last race time”, right. That would really speak to a particular type of person who has sort of arrived at this moment where they need this help. The other way to really help people buy is to be very clear on who these people are. And because when people know that you are for them, it shortens the sales cycle. Then that education process that might take three to 18 months or whatever you want them to sort of land on your saved LinkedIn page or your website or whatever, and say, “Oh, thank God, thank God I found her.”
Right. Okay. Yeah. So it's interesting because while I do a lot of work in large organizations, I prefer the mid-market because there's a greater impact and you actually can see results. Right. They're small enough that they can start to turn that ship a little bit. And within those mid markets, I've had success working at the C level as well as working across technology. So those are kind of my two, you know, the two areas that I tend to go towards. My favorite client right now is a biotech firm and I've spent a lot of time with them. So it's kind of, you know, healthcare and technology. I've got quite a bit of, I've done some work within the healthcare field and yeah. Healthcare and technology are kind of my two that I seem to have. Even if it's health insurance as well, like it's kind of sitting in that same niche. Which was funny because when I filled out the thing, I was like, Oh, I didn't realize they have these connections that I'd like to do stuff with health systems and health insurance and biotech and kind of in that same little circle.
Absolutely. And that's not to say that you have to niche by industry because I think that's what a lot of people, that's sort of the easy way to think about niching, right? By industry, by geography, by size or whatever. And you know, you already said that you like mid market, which is great because what I heard you say is I liked them because we can actually make change happen. But I want to encourage you to think about also, it's okay to niche by the problem. You know, you can be in a biotech firm or industry or healthcare or whatever, and still not have the problem that you solve. Right. So when we talk about how to message to really help people understand what you do and that you're for them, right. And that you can provide value, it's really messaging around the problem and the problem that you're solving.
So that's an interesting one, because if I look at my past work, I've done a couple of different things. So some of it is around strategic planning and getting a plan to execute against. And that seems to be a common theme, whether it's like building product roadmaps and being able to honestly, and realistically execute against the roadmap or at a higher level of getting a strategic plan together and getting them to execute. And then the other area is really around what I'm really in deep with a group, it's actually calling out what are the nuances of the team? Like the team doesn't trust each other. They don't have transparency. They're not, you know, they aren't having honest conversations. So like, there's almost like two different pieces that I spend energy on. One is planning and execution and getting them being really honest about why or why not they're able to execute. And then the other one is about then starting to call out how the dynamics of that team are working or not working and starting to work through those. When I can get into a room and see people, or even in a zoom, you can start to see the nuances of the teams. Right. And the dynamics, which is what I think is the most interesting part of it, because then you can start to call out, okay, this leadership team struggles with having very open and transparent conversations or they don't trust each other or whatever.
Yeah. And I think that I want you to take it even a step back because the problem is they can't execute. Which means you focus on sort of executing plans and it's almost like what has brought them to this moment, where they need you? It's like, that's the problem that needs to be solved. What has brought them to this moment is, and I'm just sort of riffing, but it's like, what's brought them to this moment is they're struggling to make decisions as a team that actually move things forward. Right?
So if you can start focusing on that, then you're really going to start to signal people for whom that's true. Do you know what I mean? Leadership team planning and execution that actually works, right? I'm just, this is sort of wonky language, but as opposed to, if somebody believes, “Oh, you know, my team makes great decisions. We have no problems”. That that's not your people, that's not your clients. But if you can sort of all in this little, this space. And it’s not a little space, I was about to say a little space. But if you can sort of own this space of, “I help teams actually make clear decisions. When everything feels muddy”. Then you become a, you know, then you become a go-to for people who are really struggling with that problem. Right. And when you can do that, then it makes the sales easier. It makes selling easier because they know they have a problem. They know how their life will be different as an organization. The value is so baked into how you're talking about it, that what typically happens is your person, your main contact or contacts will have to go sell it into somebody else. When you bake in the value into how you're actually talking about it, it makes it easier for them to sell it, sell it in. As opposed to, “Oh, you know, she's an agile coach and she does it all this agility. Oh, and she can also help us do this other stuff”. Right. As opposed to like, “Oh my gosh, we found this woman. And she takes teams that are sort of struggling with this and helps them make decisions that actually move the business forward.” Right. How much easier is that for them to sell inside?
Yeah, no, it's good. Because I think that, I mean, that is truly like what, what I bring to the table. Right. It's getting these teams to come together to talk, to make decisions, to develop a plan and to execute them. So they continue to move forward.
And I'm glad that you said that because I think what I was picking up from you was this sense that you were sort of starting from scratch with this pivot. Right. You know, I want you to understand that you're not starting from scratch. You're not at a disadvantage. All you’re doing is messaging it just a little differently.
Yeah. Yeah. And that's, I mean, that's kind of what I guess, you know, I've got I'm right now, I'm in the process of getting into a new company from a procurement perspective. And that's what they're bringing me for. Is to work with our leadership team, to build out a roadmap and execution plan and to help them to communicate better because they're terrible at it. Now, the statement of work doesn't say that. It does sort of, you know, it's, that's where I have a lot of my success. By just that I guess if it speaks to them to say, “yeah, we are struggling. We struggle to make a decision. We struggle to come together as a leadership team, we talk a lot, but we don't actually execute”.
I mean, that describes nearly every leadership team I've ever encountered. No, but to your question, will people buy it? Some people won't buy it, but they're not your people. You know, if you had a thousand leadership teams that were struggling with this, I don't know. Would that be enough work for you?
Yeah. That'd be more than enough. I'd be really good with that.
Right. So do you think there are a thousand leadership teams across the country that are struggling with this? Of course, right. You and I know that, so yeah. So will people buy it? The right people will, the right people will.
So you said to get in front of them often. And that is something that I am very like gun shy about. I know, like we talk about. You've talked a lot about the sales and things like that, because for me, when you have put yourself out there, I know that and you have to promote yourself. Right. And people have to know what you're offering, what value that you're bringing, super important. I'm not one that loves to constantly be putting stuff in people's faces because I like to be very authentic and how I do stuff. So I don't want to be so salesy. They're like, “Oh my God, here she is again, trying to sell me something”. And especially right now, I struggle with how often do you constantly put stuff out there and ping on people and do what you need to be doing? And LinkedIn is totally my . . . The other thing I liked about you is the LinkedIn thing. So that's where I have all my, I mean, that's it, that's my professional network. I don't really have a professional network on Facebook, you know, like that's it. And that's where people know me and know, know what I'm about.
Well, before we talk about how to do this, I want to just stay on something you said. You know, you don't want to put stuff in people's faces because you want it to be authentic. You don't want people to say, “Oh, you know, here she is, again”. Talk to me about putting stuff in people's faces. It's just really interesting that you phrased it that way. Talk to me about that.
Yeah. I guess there's just, there's a lot of noise out there. I guess I'm very cognizant with all the noise that's out there, right? Like you, I probably get at least five to six LinkedIn emails, requests, whatever. I can help you build your business type of thing. Right. And it drives me crazy because it gets to a point I'm like, I don't need another person trying to help me gain clients. Right. So it's all about the messaging. And when somebody links in with me and I see that they're whatever, I don't want to call it what you want. And I'm like, “Oh gosh, this person is going to try to get me to sign up for their program to help gain, get more clients”. That's what I'm, I'm hesitant with. And I have my go-to that I go to for work. And I don't want to constantly be pushing in front of them. Like, Hey, here I am. Right.
Maybe because they are past clients. And I guess I just need to make it more visible because I'm trying to get some new clients so that I can gain more work. Right. And get myself out there. So I want to make it all. I want the messaging to be again, authentic and real. They're like, “Oh, well I'm interested. Yeah. Let's have a conversation because yeah, we do struggle with this. And especially now we're really having to come become a stronger team and making and making decisions and executing”. Yeah. So it's trying to figure out how to not be where somebody sees like, Oh, here she goes again. She's selling something. Right. That type of thing.
I think all that is fair. Talk to me about what it would mean to be seen like that. Not, not seen like that in a way of being salesy, but talk to me about what it means to just be seen.
Yeah. So for me to be seen would be, I come to top of mind when they're like, “Oh, we need someone. We really could use your services”. That's important for me. Right. Is that my name comes up and you know, “Oh, we're, we're really struggling to make good decisions or we're really struggling. We're not a strong team, not a strong leadership team or our organization is struggling. Oh, you know, she's really good at this. And she's got lots of clients that she's done this for before. We should try it. Let's have a conversation with her.” Like, that's important from a being seen perspective is that I’m on top of mind when specifically probably mid-level and mid-market C-levels are like my team isn't strong. Right? “Oh, you should call them because that's what she's really good at doing”. Like that's what I want to be seen and known for.
And that makes perfect sense in order to be that right. In order to be top of mind, you know, you have to be seen and you have to be seen often. So I think I want to sort of separate two concepts here. So you, you like, I don't want to be, you know, in your face and pushing all the salesy stuff or, and whatever. Right. Nobody wants that. But I want to separate frequency from content. So in order to be seen as top of mind, you have to be seen and you have to be seen a lot. You know, it used to be, conventional wisdom said that it took seven touchpoints for somebody to make a sale. I mean, I think that's so outdated. It's probably like in the 20 - 30 range. You know, think about people's attention spans now. Right. So, you have to be seen and you have to sort of own this mental real estate. Like what would it mean if every time somebody opened up LinkedIn or were scrolling on LinkedIn, they saw something really awesome from you. Every single time.
But I want to separate that from the content, because when the content is bad, then the frequency feels even worse. Right. It's like you're being super salesy and you're in my face. Like really you need to stop. Nobody wants to be seen like that. The content doesn't have to be salesy. You know, there is content that educates, that helps people understand the problem, helps people recognize that they have the problem, that demonstrates how you've solved it for other people, helps create desire for the results that you've gotten your other clients. Right. You know, so people are like, “Ooh, yeah, I want that”. None of that is salesy. It's just you, sort of, instead of being quietly awesome over here in a corner where nobody sees you, now you're being awesome in front of people who could hire you.
Yeah. That makes sense.
So I just want to sort of separate those because just because you have frequency doesn't mean that you are salesy. Does that make sense?
Yeah. It does, you know, I am about content. So when I do post on LinkedIn, which isn't as frequently, I've kind of taken a little step back this month because I've been struggling with messaging. But for me, it's not always about pushing, “Oh, I'm having a webinar. Oh, I'm having this”, you know. I try to either run a blog and provide, you know, or I have a quote out there or I just do something that's not always, join me for my webinar, join me for my webinar, join me for my whatever. Right. So, because I feel like now when I scroll through LinkedIn, I'm seeing all the, like Jeremy from one of my classes, like everybody's promoting their stuff, but there's not a lot of meaning. And there's not a lot of great articles out there or really good meaning out there that is kind of like, “Oh, that was worth the time to take and read it”. Right. Because one of the CEOs that I've worked with in the past, he actually has his great posts. And he's just talking about what it means to be a strong leader during these times. And like, I love them because they're, they're great. And they're very thought provoking.
And that's the kind of content that you can come out with this. You know, the way I see it is when you provide a lot of value, you sort of earn the right to offer something.
You know, if you walk into a party for example, and you were like, Hey, I'm here, here's my business card. You walk into a party, you immediately start offering something to everybody. Right. That would feel really off. But if you walk into a party, you just do your thing. You're meeting people, you're sort of hanging out. And eventually you're like, guys, it's been an awesome party. I just want to let you know, I'm doing this thing next Saturday. If you want to come, come, it would be great. Right. That is so different than showing up with something to offer something to sell. Right. And so I think if this guy who you are following one day came out and said, listen, we're doing a webinar or we're doing something or there's this thing you could download, you probably download it because you're like, he's sort of earned the right to do that.
Right. Cause it was being very honest and real and transparent about what he's going through as a CEO.
Yeah. And that's the kind of stuff when people say I'm looking for leadership, it doesn't have to mean that I have all the answers right now. Sometimes it means that I understand what you're going through because here's what we're going through. Here's what I see other people going through. Right. So there's definitely an opportunity for you to show up and provide value and really help people go through that education process. That's how you stay top of mind. Yeah. Side note. You may or may not know this, but I have a whole thing about how to do this on LinkedIn.
Yeah. I, I heard you talk about it. I was looking at your profile and some of the other folks that you gave us links to, and I liked that. And I think you, you resonate with me cause you're like, don't just put that you're a leadership coach, right? Like what do you actually do? So I started and I saw we did that here, but I, I started writing it too. I was like, what do I do? I help? I was like, I need more because that is truly where I'm going to get my business. I know.
Absolutely. LinkedIn is your, if you are mid-market like Dennis, where your people are, for sure. So it's just a matter of, I mean, there, there are more parts of this, but the first, you know, critical pieces you can do today are that headline and really allow people to understand how you work, you know, allow people to know what it's like to be in your orbit and to work with you.
Yeah. That's interesting. Can we talk more about that? Because I think that's always been like why people have me come back and continue to work with them is because of the way that I work with them and I'm not quite sure how to convey that so that folks get it. But what I've been told is that, patient, kind, understanding, honest, empathetic, but I will also call things out when I need to. And that's been the theme that I get with all my companies that they really appreciate that. And then I'm able to track, right. Whatever's going on in the room and the conversations as well as call out things that are not being said. And that's been, I think why people continue to have me back and working with them. Asking tough questions. Right. So like really growing up, I don't think this is really what the problem is. The problem is that we're not addressing this. And then, Oh, like the whole room like pauses. Right. So that's been kind of one of my super powers. It's having the ability to read the room and really work with them as they need to, based on whose present.
Right, right, right. So I want to think about, not just sort of, when I say how you work, right. What it's like to work with you, the qualities that you mentioned are sort of one area, but I also want to encourage you to think about letting people in on how you think, how you think about a problem. Right. So you said about reading the room. I bet if you sat down and brainstormed 30 topics all about reading the room, you could come up with that and much more. So let's just come up with, I mean, we can just sort of spitball a few, right.
Like passive aggressive.
Right! Passive aggressive. I bet you could do 30 just on passive aggressiveness, but let's just sort of get some of these down. Talk to me about passive aggressiveness.
Yeah. I mean, definitely there are, you can see passive aggressiveness either in body language or in communication or in the way that people interact with each other.
Okay, there's one, there's one. How does passive aggressiveness show up? How do you know if somebody is being passive aggressive? Okay. Keep going.
Well basically there, they either will put something out there and then recoil it back. Right. Just to kind of see how people react to it. They do it from a reaction or they will pick at something that, you know, that they know somebody else in the room they're fond of, or it's an area of their, of their expertise. So it just kind of seeing, and especially in the South, you know, there's like, there's quite a bit of passive aggressiveness in there because they'll tell you that you're, that's a dumb idea, but they'll do it really nicely. Um, Oh yeah.
I know. I mean I'm from Nashville, so I am quite familiar.
Um, so in terms of that way too, like yeah. There's all kinds of fun.
Yeah. And so, just some of the things you mentioned, you could do a whole series on passive aggressive techniques and how to come back in as a leader. You know, you could say one of the biggest things I see kill productive conversations is passive aggressiveness. Let's talk about that. Yeah. You know, why is passive aggressiveness so hard to pin down? Yeah. You know, these are just topics that you could, you could write content on. And so that's what I mean about letting people in on how you think and how you approach a problem. And then you sort of apply that if you take that sort of brainstorming approach, there are probably dozens of topics that you could do that on. That it's the kind of stuff that you don't even know that you know it. You don't even know you're thinking about it.
I know it's just instinct. Like when I walk in, I'm like, Oh, here we have going on here, we've got a sales guy, who's got a really strong personality. And then you've got a product manager that doesn't have a strong personality, but it's really great in what they know and their knowledge. And like just the dynamics of that are huge. Trying to figure out how to make those two folks play together nicely.
Oh my God, you could write a hundred about personality dynamics.
I could, yeah.
And when you do that, let's just sort of tie it to what you really want, which is clients, right? What do you want from LinkedIn? You want clients, right. First of all, when you show up, I mean only 1% of LinkedIn users ever post on LinkedIn at all. So when you show up and you post you're already in the 1%. But then it's about that. Yeah, can you believe that?
Then it's about that frequency, right? How do you own the real estate in people's feeds and people's minds with this type of content? Does this concept feel salesy to you?
Yeah. No. As long as it's meaningful and they're getting value from it, then it doesn't for me. I mean, that's, you know, that's how I buy from people. So.
Yeah. And that's how people want to be. I don't even say, want to be sold to, it's people want a chance to learn about you before they even make a decision to purchase, you know, or reach out. Because anywhere from two-thirds to 90% of the education process happens in a way that's totally hidden from you. And if people are, if people have this problem and you don't allow them to have an education process, that there's no education process, that's going to lead to you. Right. Okay. And it might lead to somebody else. So that's why it's like, it's not just a social media tactic, right. To show up like this on LinkedIn. It's part of the sales process. You're actually participating in the sales process and allowing people to participate in a sales process with you before anybody ever reaches out.
Right. That makes sense. Okay.
And that's why, I mean, and that's also like, that's why I do LinkedIn, the way I do. Like, I don't do messages. I mean, I'll do like a connection message. Like I would love to connect with you, but you let them go through this education process and get warmer and warmer and warmer using the content we've just been talking about. Because that's how people actually evaluate providers. And that's how people actually come to the point where they want to reach out, sending a message like, “Hey, I just connected with you five minutes ago. I got some consulting. You want some consulting”. Yeah. Right. That's that's not even how people buy. So we have to let them go through that education process. And I met her having gone through the education process with you by the time that they do reach out, they know that you're the one.
Right, right. Yeah. Because they read the content and they find it interesting. Engaging. Okay.
Well talk to me about, you know, we focused on sort of getting out there and doing LinkedIn, but I have a feeling that's, that's just one area. I mean, talk to me about like, where you really want to be.
I'd like to be turning down clients because I don't have the bandwidth or building a practice to expand my services or my offerings or what I do. That's the goal. So I need clients. I need people to know about me. I need to get my name out there. Luckily all of the work has been referrals or people that have worked with me in the past. I haven't really had to go out and actively look for work. So that's been nice. And when I do, if people are interested, it’s either cause they've heard me speak and they like my messaging and my approach. And then I get on a call and we kind of work through whatever it is that they're looking for when we put together a proposal. So I haven't really had to go out and look, if that makes sense.
But now we're in a little bit of a different time. And so I feel like I do need to be a lot more active from a sales perspective because I want to have enough work that again, I have to make a decision. Do I turn it down or do I bring somebody else in? Like, that's where I want to take this. So a lot of it has just been, somebody knows me, they know I can do this work and they bring me in. And a lot of it, when I think about it, is through, I actually had a business partner, but we started our business together. And then I bought him out. He has been instrumental in getting me into either new places or new clients because of his connections. So that's been helpful.
Well, I'll say that when you can do what we've done in this session, and you can go out with this messaging and you can sort of really focus on the value. You know, we talked about how it makes it easier to buy, it shortens the sales process. It also makes it easier to refer. Right. Because instead of saying,”Oh, she's an agile coach, you should hire her or whatever”. And they just have to like put it together on how you will help them, which they probably won't do because people are busy and they have other stuff going on. But it makes you much more referable if you've sort of given them the language to use that has the value of that added. How do you feel right now?
No, I feel good. I'm excited because I feel like I've got real clarity. I feel like I know exactly, I'm still working on what my, I help is tagline, but I want to put that into my, I want to change that and put that into my tagline.
And I want to start to really think about content and start to write content and getting that out there based on the education piece of it. Like, thank you. I feel much, much better. Cause I'm just like, I've always struggled with who I am and what I, like who are you? And what do you do best? And that, you know, there's all these different things out there. And I'm like, Oh, I know what I do best, but how do you get people to understand that? And now the question is always like, now, will they buy it? Right. Now it's like, okay, I know what I do. I know what I do well. I can get that out there. And I can start to track the content about all the different nuances and pieces and understand me and the processes now will they actually buy it? That's like the next step in it.
So what we talked about a lot in this call, but I want to quickly pull out one lesson from the conversation that you can start to apply to your business. And it's this idea of showing up. A lot of people worry that just showing up means that you're being salesy. But as you heard, there's a difference between showing up with educational high value content and showing up with salesy content. Just showing up alone won't make you salesy if you do it right. And if you show up, you can educate your clients and develop great relationships. And yes, there's a tiny chance that somebody out there on the big anonymous internet might feel a way about something. You say a tiny chance, but if you don't show up, there's a 100% chance that you'll be invisible to the clients who need you and the clients who want to hire you. So start showing up now is the time.
So after this episode, there's just one more episode left in this first season of the podcast. And this podcast is something totally new for me, which is actually why we started with just one season. And if you're enjoying it, if you're learning from it, then I want to continue it. So if you like this podcast, if you've learned something, if you'd like another season, let me know by leaving a rating or a review, wherever you're listening to your podcasts and share it with other women who would benefit from what we're talking about here. If you're in I'm in, thanks.
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EP 13: When you want to be unique