The War Room
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Executives bailing on virtual meetings?

I don’t know about you guys but virtual selling is fucking brutal. Today I had a meeting set with an executive in which I spent weeks preparing for (not to mention the unbelievable amount of hours spent on the phone trying to get the damn meeting in the first place). The exec declined the meeting 10 minutes before it started. This has been happening more and more to me over the last few months. I’m above plan for the year luckily but for some reason I seem to be having the worst luck with these C-levels bailing on meetings last minute. Any advice on how to help prevent this from happening?? It’s so damn frustrating....

🏡 WFH
💻 Virtual selling
13
braintank
Politicker
+6
Enterprise Account Executive
Do it over lunch and send them food.
paddy
WR Officer
+11
Account Executive
If they're local I'd try to secure an in-person lunch or something. If they're super hesitant because of Covid then welll...you're shit out of luck. I'd just push for in-person as much as possible
Accidental_Sales_Guy
Politicker
+3
Account Executive
Execs have so many demands of them; they are constantly reprioritizing. If they lose the connection between your solution and 2021 business goal X, Y, or Z, they will replace your meeting with something that more clearly accomplishes X, Y, or Z.

We need to uncover the exec's priority early (i.e. expand into X market), and repeatedly position our solution (across stakeholders) as a catalyst to achieving the business goal on the Exec's mind. That's our best shot at getting them to show, and ultimately signing a contract.
 
Incognito
WR Officer
+11
Master of Disaster
follow up with a snail mailed message - printed and crumpled into a ball and say "here, I did you a favor and made it easier for you to toss my message in the trash" at the end. 

or something equally memorable. 

I like pinatagrams.
Dialboy
Contributor
District Manager
Love this idea. 
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
That is fucking savage.
Law
Good Citizen
+2
Head of Business Development
savage but memorable, you are for sure getting that meeting if the exec reads into your humor
sales7
Politicker
+5
Sales Enablement Manager
As soon as you get the decline I'd call them, straight away and ask why and when to reschedule, usually that quick phone call gives you the update you needed anyway.
stanrym
Valued Contributor
+5
CEO
the Q is how you react after the meeting? I'd follow up every week for set another meeting with something that is valueable
JuicyKlay
Politicker
+9
AM
You’re not alone here! Are you calling or emailing them the day before or day of to remind them and get them to confirm again?
Dialboy
Contributor
District Manager
Yeah I do this quite a bit but sometimes it goes by the way side and bites me in the ass. Or they just don’t respond...
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
Immediately reschedule for the same time the next week. And if/when the exec declines, say "okay, I know you had a change at the last minute. What works for you?"
Law
Good Citizen
+2
Head of Business Development
I find that empathy and mirroring the exec works like magic, execs are busy people, and more often than not when priorities change internally you became less of a priority to them unless your solution serves the new strategic direction the org is going. 
What works for me is leading with empathy whether on email or calls...''Hey, I know you are swamped and your day to day changes affect a lot of people but mostly yourself as you need to reorganize your calendar a lot, how about we do this when you are fresh and not bombarded with meetings/requests, does early morning work or over the weekends? I'd go even further and stalk them to know what they like doing after hours and insert myself in that space, is it going for a run, grab a drink, etc whatever it takes to get myself in their face and being viewed as a friend more than a sales person gets it done for me!
hurtscuzimold
Opinionated
+5
Dude abiding
I feel like this is daily. I don’t expect the executives to show up so I don’t even tell the prospect they will join. That way if they do it’s a bonus. 

but nothing like being tossed off to a junior joe like me when you think you’ve got the boss on the line. 
1
How has your company handled in-person meetings during Covid?
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7
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11
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Most successful place for an in-person meetings?
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+43
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