Penultimate meeting of the year and we are back at solicitors Reed Smith on 32nd floor of Broadgate Tower just north of Liverpool Street station.
Guest speaker before the three business pitches is communication guru Dexter Moscow, his real name not an invented one, who kicks off with the point that these days, being a good communicator is just as important as being good at what you do. Fear of public speaking is well known and being very senior/wealthy/famous or intelligent does not take the fear away. Harvard Business School confirm that really big business deals are done face to face so communication skills are crucial there too. Recently and unsurprisingly perhaps, there has been a swing away from the internet to personal meetings to do business.
Dexter’s years of work with QVC TV channel shows that people buy emotionally and not just on television. We all like to think we are rational decision makers but we are much more emotional than we admit. In delivering a presentation there is a point after 7 – 10 minutes where people’s attention is inclined to wander, so getting the audience involved by asking a question or using a prop (he used an umbrella) can stop your listeners nodding off – an audience RESET button, if you like.
Dexter’s client list is impressive including multinationals and huge property companies like British Land Deutsche Boerse and LEGO and we await his new book.
Not being a pet person, my initial reaction to seeing Danny Djanogly’s Dogiz was not enthusiastic. At pains to point out that his is a Low Tech business, its growth without any marketing budget is impressive. Hearing what his clients spend every month on pet food etc reminded me of my early days as an IFA. Parents would say they could not afford £30 a month life assurance but would spend hundreds of pounds immediately if their pet was ill – an emotional sale if ever there was one. Dogiz provides back up and supply services to “pet professionals” (not the student or pensioner who just wants a bit of extra cash doing dog walking) and the business model has translated very well from its base in Israel.
With the current fuss over Uber’s exploitation of and lacking of vetting of its drivers, one had to smile listening to Mark Preston’s StreetDrone presentation. Here autonomous driverless vehicles could be just over a generation away with Intel predicting that the autonomous vehicle technology market could be worth US$ 7 trillion by 2050. Partnered with Renault, NVIDIA and having exited two businesses by trade sale already, their Raspberry-Pi of driverless vehicles is looking for £150,000 additional funding.
Adam Fillary has a problem – like I do and millions of other people – remembering names. Remembering faces seems easier than remembering the name that goes with it and his VizzMee is an answer. Chatting to someone at a meeting? Instead of or maybe as well as, shoot a 30 second video of them speaking about their business.
After years using a complicated algorithm to find the best idea to invest in where someone with a laptop sat at the back of the meeting entering data, 3Cs organiser Colin Spiller tried an experiment – let’s have a show of hands. Surprisingly, this always matched the algorithm prediction. Now at the end of each meeting, there is a show of hands “suppose you had £100,000 to invest in the speakers’ ideas, which one would you choose?” VizzMee won this time and no new members of the nul points club unlike the previous meeting.