An MD approached me as he was concerned about his team and that although very skilled in their respective roles, they needed more confidence to cross-sell their services.

Like many MDs, he was time-poor, working too much in the business as opposed to On the business, and therefore could only serve some clients.

Revenue was simply walking out the door.

Their clients were global brands, and his business provided a channel management service that helped clients channel their brands through major retailers.

The retail and online markets have gone through considerable changes, and these changes caused some anxiety among their clients. The account managers had first-hand knowledge of developments and suggested solutions.

When the account managers visited or contacted their clients for regular updates, the client would relay their concerns during the ensuing discussion.

They would discuss possible solutions and options- which the account manager would do naively. And the client would implement and generate significant revenue having received the advice.

I suggested a Know-Your-Value training for his team, where we looked at each team member’s self-confidence and beliefs, introduced new selling conversations and how to measure the impact of their advice to clients with live examples. This was very effective.

In my early consulting days, especially during Discovery Sessions, I would be keen to distil advice. I’d listen to them talk about their situation and fall over myself, providing a solution there and then. The only problem was I’d rarely see them again.

I was giving away the ‘crown jewels’ of my knowledge and expertise – without even knowing it.

We often need to pay more attention to how much just listening or making a suggestion due to our expertise can help someone make a new decision, get unstuck, and make that phone call they have been procrastinating for a very long time.

Always remember the value of a conversation. You could be unconsciously distilling years of hard-earned expertise and knowledge without knowing it.