Each of us pitches ideas every day. Regardless of what idea we’re selling—or who we’re selling it to—it all boils down to the act of stirring someone to join you, to agree to follow you. Yet we consistently underestimate how critical it is to recognize the role of the decision maker. Decisions are, after all, made by people; and people have needs and agendas, spoken and unspoken. Understanding these needs and agendas are critical to success in business. Kevin Allen’s approach is not about persuading, but about creating a connection that assures a mutual win. By unearthing the true motivation or desire of the decision maker, Allen shows how to craft a story or message around it, creating a predictable and repeatable end result. Full of stories and examples, this entertaining book teaches you how to effectively find, connect, and finally speak to the Hidden Agenda to win business unfailingly, every time.
Allen, an advertising vet with a track record that includes MasterCard's "Priceless" campaign, offers concrete and easy-to-implement advice to satisfy the "hidden agenda" inherent in every interaction. Allen uses this term to describe the unspoken emotional motivator behind every decision. Since people make active decisions based on what resonates with this motivator, it's critical that businesspeople at all levels understand and address the factors which stand between themselves and success. To that end, Allen shows how to understand your audience and provides practical strategies for uncovering the needs, wants, and values that drive them. He shows how to find assets you can leverage that help connect using your "core" (the special abilities at the core of your being) and your "credo" (the belief system you and your audience share). He also explores the importance of developing a win strategy once a connection is made and how to utilize the power of storytelling. Using examples from his professional life, Allen demonstrates how he put these principles into action, providing useful context for readers. He also helpfully distills the most important takeaways in a "Remember This" box at the end of each chapter. A modern day Don Draper, Allen shows that he knows how to sell because he knows what his audience will buy.