“It’s really important I get this right for you”
This statement from Richard Mullender in the closing section of his Keynote, discussing the secrets of communication and how to really listen to customers, perfectly sums up the success of Connections 2018. The Artesian team got it right for our audience.
Connections 2018 – a focus on addressing head on the ‘risky business’ of sales today was held on Wednesday 28th November at 33 Holborn, London – boasted high-calibre speakers and brought together around 200 commercial leaders from Fortune and FTSE 100 companies.
The engaging programme examined the external influences on businesses in 2018 and beyond, and the multitude of risks and threats to revenue growth faced by front-line teams.
It also delved deep into the opportunities for smart businesses and fast movers to re-define risk decision making through the power of technology.
The speaker line up included:
- Lord William Hague, prominent political leader for more than 20 years, serving as Leader of the Conservative Party and as Foreign Secretary
- Richard Mullender, former Hostage negotiator and Lead Trainer at the National Hostage and Crisis Negotiation Unit at Scotland Yard
- Edie Lush, Journalist, Author, Trainer and Executive Editor of Hub Culture
- Charlie Curson, Associate Partner at Innervate and Associate of Future Agenda 2025
This stellar line up certainly left the audience with plenty to think about, discuss, and implement when they got back to their desks.
So what were my key takeaways?
1 – Businesses today no longer just need to act on sunshine stories, and Know Your Customer (KYC) is no longer just another tick box exercise. Organisations need the full picture and a no surprises working environment. They need to know more and know earlier about both threats and opportunities in order to redefine front-line decision making in line with today’s business climate.
2 – Things never turn out the way we expect them to. The changing nature of democracy raises some very obvious issues for businesses. They need to build more resilience to deal with unpredictability. They need diverse sources of information and advice, they need local intelligence, and importantly they need to lead on technology for both strategic and commercial reasons.
3 – In an environment that is less about predictability and more about uncertainty, the value of data is rising. Curated data is far more valuable than data that has been derived.
4 – In a world where we have too much information to process we must get better at sifting though it – not just gathering data but turning it into intelligence so that we direct our attention in the right places.
5 – We need to stop listening to things that are of no-use to us, we need to talk to the people who want to hear us, and we need to understand what is important to them if we are to serve them correctly.
6 – Business is always personal and trust is everything. When engaging with customers we must first uncover triggers around facts, emotions, motivators, values, beliefs, currency and worth if we are to build valuable solutions, sell them correctly, build trust, garner likability and develop lasting relationships.
7 – News sources have become fractured, to get a well-rounded view now requires us to access news from a multitude of sources. Access to news is fundamental for high quality discussion and so harnessing a way to filter and curate the news is of vital importance to staying ahead, not just in terms of responding to the news agenda but finding a way to shape the narrative.
8 – Business is ultimately about three things – 1. making money, 2. saving money, and 3. protecting reputation – these three things are the key motivators for customers, and sellers must always keep these motivators front of mind. To do this they need a constant supply of real-time insight and intelligence about their customers.
There was certainly a lot to learn at Connections 2018. It challenged conventional thinking, surprised and delighted in terms of the vast range of insight delivered, and empowered the audience to change the way they engage for transformed business results.
The conference continues to undoubtedly be a great success and it was fantastic to see new and familiar faces, and also give them a heads up about the exciting things happening in Artesian’s evolution – the planned enhancements to our customer engagement platform for the Spring 2019 release, the launch of the Artesian Risk and Compliance Hub (ARCH), our expanding international capabilities and new leadership programme – more to come on all these fronts soon.
Join the conversation at #Connections18.