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Episode 28 - The Pitch

Carrie was nervous.  Tomorrow she was going to be part of the pitch team from LB Law.  They were going to visit Traskapoint Developments.

The potential for the firm was huge – one partner had practically started hyperventilating as he tried to explain the enormity of the opportunity for the firm.  The prize was all Traskapoint’s property development work (nationwide) and all their employment work, an audit of all their supplier contracts and then all the dispute resolution work which flowed from all of this.  And Traskapoint did seem to like a dispute.

As she sat at her desk, Carrie reflected on what had happened in the run up to the pitch – and what she had learnt and hoped to put into action tomorrow.

There had been some training about six months ago.  There were quite a few key messages:

  • -          don’t talk about “we” all the time (especially about desperately obvious stuff that can be read on the website)
  • -          go the extra mile to find out about their business, so you can talk about “you” (the potential client) with conviction
  • -          really, really understand what the client wants.  Don’t just take at face value what they say in the invitation to tender.  Probe to find out the less obvious things or even things they didn’t initially know they needed
  • -          connect with the people as human beings as well as potential clients.  For the key people try to work out what their psychometric profile might be
  • -          articulate clearly 1) What the hot issues are for them, 2) How you can help, 3) What benefits the client will get from that help 4) Tangible evidence of how the firm works and what the client will gain
  • -          don’t start by offering unasked for discounts.  Think beyond hourly rates.
  • -          whatever it takes, get a pre-meeting

They had got the pre-meeting and Carrie was there.  This had proved incredibly valuable.  For a start Traskapoint’s offices were nothing like what she had expected. Although the Traskapoint people mentioned the expected issues like cost and good communication, she noticed that the word they used several times was “trust”.  It was obvious that Sam (the sole in-house lawyer) and Alex (the commercial director who disappeared half way through the meeting) did not get on.  The Finance Director was heavily into detail – surprise!  And on the way out, during some small talk, they learnt that Sam’s son who had learning difficulties was soon coming back home after some time in residential care.

What Carrie briefly remembered and then quickly dismissed as spectacularly unhelpful, was the war story of her “partner mentor” at her previous firm.  He seemed particularly proud of having prepared for his one (successful) pitch on the train to the prospective client after a very good lunch.

They had rehearsed as a team three times.  They were going to present a series of case studies to Traskapoint and discuss with them how, working together, they would tackle a range of transactions and issues.  Above all they were going to demonstrate how Traskapoint could completely trust LB Law.

 

Carrie was now beginning to look forward to tomorrow after all.

 

Have your say

In my firm

Episode 28 - The Pitch Poll 1

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[{"id":"112","title":"We take pitching and preparation for pitches very seriously","votes":"2","type":"x","order":"1","pct":100,"resources":[]},{"id":"113","title":"We do the best we can, but it\u2019s difficult to get people to commit the time and effort","votes":"0","type":"x","order":"2","pct":0,"resources":[]}] ["#ff5b00","#4ac0f2","#b80028","#eef66c","#60bb22","#b96a9a","#62c2cc"] ["rgba(255,91,0,0.7)","rgba(74,192,242,0.7)","rgba(184,0,40,0.7)","rgba(238,246,108,0.7)","rgba(96,187,34,0.7)","rgba(185,106,154,0.7)","rgba(98,194,204,0.7)"] 350
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·          In my firm

Episode 28 - The Pitch Poll 2

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[{"id":"114","title":" We sometimes turn down pitch opportunities if we don\u2019t think we could do a great job for the client","votes":"1","type":"x","order":"1","pct":50,"resources":[]},{"id":"115","title":"If we\u2019re asked, we pitch","votes":"1","type":"x","order":"2","pct":50,"resources":[]}] ["#ff5b00","#4ac0f2","#b80028","#eef66c","#60bb22","#b96a9a","#62c2cc"] ["rgba(255,91,0,0.7)","rgba(74,192,242,0.7)","rgba(184,0,40,0.7)","rgba(238,246,108,0.7)","rgba(96,187,34,0.7)","rgba(185,106,154,0.7)","rgba(98,194,204,0.7)"] 350
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In my firm

Episode 28 - The Pitch Poll 3

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[{"id":"116","title":" We win a high proportion of the pitches we go for","votes":"1","type":"x","order":"1","pct":50,"resources":[]},{"id":"117","title":"We don\u2019t get the work that often, but then you can\u2019t expect to","votes":"1","type":"x","order":"2","pct":50,"resources":[]}] ["#ff5b00","#4ac0f2","#b80028","#eef66c","#60bb22","#b96a9a","#62c2cc"] ["rgba(255,91,0,0.7)","rgba(74,192,242,0.7)","rgba(184,0,40,0.7)","rgba(238,246,108,0.7)","rgba(96,187,34,0.7)","rgba(185,106,154,0.7)","rgba(98,194,204,0.7)"] 350
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What’s your experience of pitching and beauty parades?  Have you been in Carrie’s shoes.  Share your triumphs and other experiences.

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