B2B Revenue Acceleration
B2B Revenue Acceleration

Episode · 1 year ago

90: Building Relationships in a Virtual World w/ Deirdre McGinn


During the lockdown, it has been a challenge for most of us to build relationships with employees, clients, suppliers, and teams in our new virtual world.

That’s because most of us have yet to grasp that virtual presence is important — and trainable.

Recently on B2B Revenue Acceleration, we interviewed Dieirdre McGinn, Executive Coach and Founder at StepUpStepIn, about building relationships in a virtual world.

We talked about the 2 foundations of virtual presence, Deirdre’s virtual presence framework (See, Hear, & Feel), and how to deepen virtual relationships with trust.

To hear this interview and many more like it, subscribe to The B2B Revenue Acceleration Podcast on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or on our website.

You were listening to bb revenue acceleration, a podcast dedicated to helping software executive stay on the cutting edge of salesand marketing in their industry. Let's give him the show. Hi, welcometo be to be a revenue acceleration. My name is Ohnim with you andI'm here today with day dream again, executive cush and founder at step up, step in. How are you today? Day Drenk, Good Morning Ray.Thank you. I'm great today. Actually, I'm in Dublin. It'sa beautiful morning. It's very autumnal outside my window right now, so I'mlooking at some beautiful colors on the tree. So happy, so good to day. The first question for you is I've been swimming in the city thismorning on a tip. Today, not, not yet today, the tides arenot working, but yesterday morning I was in the sea quite early andit was just beautiful, gorgeous. Very very brave of you, very braveful. So I'll discussion today is quite to be collectually and it's about building relationshipin a virtual world. I'm very, very, very, very keen tohave young today because I have found it myself relatively difficult to build relationship withemployees, with clients, with sup players during the lockdown and I think weall getting a little bit better at it. But before we step into the conversationday, Drek, would you like to give us a bit more informationas to know you are, where you come from, but also tell usa little bit more about step up step in your company? Sure. So, for the last twenty five years my career has been in the technology industry. So I've worked in sales roles and sales leadership roles in in arcle IBMand the most recent was with Linkedin. I was with Linkedin and four,four and a half years, okay, so very much a tech background anda sales background. About a year ago, Ray, I found myself. Iprobably did a bit burnt out, if I'm honest. I was justexhausted and tired. I was doing a an executive coaching course here in Dublinand as part of that you go through your own personal coaching journey and itas was, I realized that I wasn't as excited about working in the organizationas I as I had once been.

So I left and I took ayear off and I studied. I did two diplomas. I went swimming inthe sea every day, I did lovely things. I traveled all over theworld and then last year, are as this year, actually in February thisyear, I decided that I wasn't ready to go back into big corporates.So I started my own organization, which is step up step in which initiallyI was around. I'm a big I'm a huge advocate for women, especiallywomen in sales organizations, just to help them yes up into bigger jobs,and a lot of the coaching that I had done over the years was alot of it was around helping women see that they could help them, Isupposed developed their confidence so that they could see that they had an opportunity todo something bigger within the organization. So that's what makes my heart saying ifI can help a woman, and a woman specifically, do something amazing inher career, then that just makes me happy. Besides that, I doa lot of work with organizations around executive presence and virtual presence. So throughone on one coaching, but also through working with sales teams, I helpthem understand why the virtual persons important and what are the elements of that thatthey need to really focus on. To help them present themselves and be heardand seeing on calls with clients and help build those relationships. Yeah, now, that makes perfect sense. So somethings for that. Yeah, as Iwas saying my introduction, I felt it myself. I feel it on theday to day basis, as I'm a usual advocate of face to face engagement. I don't know why, I always loved it. You know, somecall me old school and lots of make California and clients I tually find alittle bit bizarre when I could them and say hey, I will be inCalifornia, I'd love to have a coffee with you. Just a WHA,we can do a zoom. Even prepending it. I always value the lotthe importance of meeting in person, looking at people in the eyes, andI think it is really important to build relationship but also to build trust.I needed to build trust, but in this new world and that we arejust to it, there is no way around getting in front of people.You know, it's very difficulty. would be dangerous. You would been considerateand of cost. Real this theffing that that something at we can do.From your perspective, what is the importance...

...of building a virtual presence and howcan people make sure that they continue building strong relationship, even if it's theactual so, like you, relationships, you know, I believe relationships areeverything, especially in any organization. So what I've observed ray over the lastsix months, initially when we went into lock down, globally, a lotof organizations will really focus just on getting their teams set up at home.So, yeah, with the technology work, making sure that they were looking aftertheir team's mental health, making sure that everybody was comfortable in the environmentthat they had found themselves in, and it's been really difficult. So whatI'm seeing now is that organizations are starting to look and see that, okay, so we've done all that, this is here to stay. It's notgoing anywhere and we're going to be in this situation, I would say,for at least another twelve months. So now we need to focus on ourteams and make sure that we're giving them their tools and techniques to start buildingthose relationships and to build that trust, and I suppose that's a lot ofthe work that I do. So the virtual presence is about it's about inspiringconfidence. That's how I describe it. So if I'm presenting myself in thissmall little box that we all find ourselves in. Yeah, in the bestpossible way, and it's inspiring confidence and building confidence in you as my client. That starts to build a relationship, it starts to build a trust andthen you go deeper into what does that look like? So what do peoplesee? Because you know, the minute you've seen me this morning, youcreated an impression of me, because we build judgments of people, yeah,in the first nanoseconds of meeting them. So there's an opportunity there, especiallyin the first engagement with a client, is to make sure that we're creatingthat first impression and the judgment that they're making is the judgment that you wantthem to make. So for me there's two things. I think in termsof virtual presence, there is intensions. What's my intention coming on this callthis morning with you? How do I want to help you? How doI want to make you see you? And we forget about this because wethink about ourselves when we're going on calls for clients. We think about whatdo I want to get out of it? Yeah, my intention is how doI want you to feel on this...

...call? How do I want youto perceive me on this call. And then the second bit is being present. I don't know, I see it all the time and I appreciate that. We're all zoom fatigue now at the stage and you could spend eight hourson zoom every day. So it's really easy to get distracted. And youknow, I've got this beautiful view at my window, so it's very easyfor me to just glance at there or my phone. I never have myphone on my desk when I want to call because it's just too easy.Yeah, and I'm not present and the minute my eyes go down, especiallyin this world, because we're seeing more in this environment than we're ever seenin an office or in a meeting room because it's so intense. Yeah,so if my eyes drift down to my phone, you know already that I'mgone. Like I'm not present on the call. So having sort of anintention in your mind and being present for me at the foundations of creating agood virtual presence now absolutely now compacting on the some that and I think it'skind of commen sense in a way, because you're right, you know,you may be in yourn living room, you may be in your own office. I think it's a main set as well. If you present well,I always been a big bivow that if you present well, you act well, and we always say to our team when they come in, when theyused to come in the office. So we need to present well. Wewant we want people to our shots. We want people to look smart.We don't want people to come and, you know, wearing trainnails and chuggingsand, you know, go on the office with hoodies and cap and flipflops and stuff like that. You know, it's with not between the right mindsettechnically, but also we've got clients coming all the time in the officeand we want to show them that you are bullished, we all slick.You know that, all the sort of things. So that that makes topicsas in, and of course we should take you to the the actual war, but it's come in sense, I agree. But what I've seen,Ray, is in the first six months a lot of things became acceptable.So yes, actually pants, the hoodies, the Jessy made doug children running inand I appreciate that all of that. Not all of us have offices,you know, we're all living at home in the one house, soit can be quite difficult, but I think as we move forward some ofthat's not just going to be acceptable anymore.

So we can't look like we justrolled out yet we can't look on shaven hair all over the place,you know, sitting there in a Hoodie in front of a client. Forme, yes, it's not inappropriate way of presenting yourself now. Absolutely,I agree. So you developed a virtual presence framework. See here and feel. Can you please took us through the free stages of this from work?Sure so, the first agency and that's the appearance that you see on thescreen. So it's how you groomed yourself, it's your background, it's the lighting. So we forget about the space around ourselves and lighting. The lightingis hugely important because if you've got lovely natural life spancing off your face,that creates energy in your fix. So you look more interested, you lookmore alive, you look more engaged when you're having conversation. If you've gotlike behind you, it can darken your face, if there's any sort ofshading or darkness over your face, you can look a bit shady and youknow into that's what the goods right now. My good the only yeah, soit's the most appropriate place for you is to be facing into the window. Yeah, you face into the window, you'll see a different light bounds offyourself there, you God. Yeah. So, and if you don't havethat beautiful natural light that you have, then having some sort of a lamp, especially going into winter now, you need to have some really goodlightings so people can see your face, because we don't have very much towork with. We've got our head, we've got our shoulders, we've gotour hands, so all of that piece we need to present in the bestpossible way. It's our body posture, you know. Do we look relaxed? Are we slumped looking into the screen, or are we sitting up in aconfident manner? Or shoulders showing that were relaxed? And there's all sortsof tips and techniques that you can use to demonstrate confidence in your body.So the second part is here, which is our communication. So it's howwe communicate in this environment and I've been very lucky over the years to managelots of virtual teams, so I've had lots of practice building relationships and communicatingin this environment, which is fantastic.

So it's quite natural for me touse my voice and the human voice. There's all sorts of interesting things wecan do with the human voice. So our pitch is really important. Ifwe're pitching too high, it can come across as nervous. If we're toknow, we could bore the pants off somebody. You know, our tone, so we can bring emotion into our voice. And again, all ofthis we don't have a lot to work with. So when we're communicating,so our voice becomes really important and building energy and expression into your voice andusing your body to do that. So that's why it's so important to situp when you're talking, because it opens your dire fragm and allows you tobreathe right into your belly, which allows you to project your voice in amuch better way. So communication is about how do we use our eye contact, how do we use voice, how do we use facial expressions and ourbody to communicate and energy and our message, and then feels about that emotional connectionpiece. It's about building those relationships and it's not about how you feel, it's about how you make other people feel. And so how do youbuild those relationships? How do you and for me, as I said,it's about intention, it's about presence and trust. It's all about trust andit's about really understand the dimensions of trust and what are the sort of thefive different dimensions of trust and how do you work through those in a relationship, because the more trust you have, more influence you have and within asales organization influences everything. Right, so absolutely a lot of time on thattrust piece. Yeah, now, that makes perfect sense. Again, it'sinteresting because the way you phrame is so stress common sense. But again,I don't make we all think about it all the time, you know,and in fact I'm thinking about it because I moved. I used to havemy yourmo FIS in. I just moved outs. In my previous House,my Om fist was literally in front of the window and I would love tohave a little bit of certain in in the morning, you know, thirtyten o'clock at that sudden comes through and I always had lights. And nowI moved to my new house where by your face is in front of thewall and the window. It's a little bit on the side of and Iwas I'm always trying to kind of move closer to the scream so I canuse them the light of the scream.

Yeah, and I'M gonna change that. You say, so I'm going to. I'm going to make action from ourconversation today, just from the lighting, because I agree with you so much. Important to have the right lighting. It's important for people to see you, because you can't feel the emotion that you would have in person.And I also hundred person agree with you. I think it's something sad to say, but as human being, within the first few seconds of seeing someonewe make an opinion of that someone. That opinion can be changed, butyou would take much more time to change, you know, an opinion rather thancreating a good one, a good impression to start with. So,yeah, absolute common sense. Can I suggest you by yourself a ring life? So there're about twenty bucks, not expense what I was thinking. Iwas thinking about this. You know, I don't call them ring later.I think what you're speaking about that it's like instagram light, when you seepeople doing like a yeah, they've got a little light in the eyes.I'M gonna get one for the stuff of them. I'm gonna get one foreveryone. I'm going to buy your bulk bring like. I think. Ithink, I think that makes sense. We should have that and you know, I have had some group session with the team recently because, again,we want to try new things and I can't walk in the office anymore.I can't take a plan to go to Dallas California anymore to meet the peopleat work for us. So we are doing it online now and I findit very, very, very difficult, even you know, I'm gonna waitthat a little bit, but even to it'll be true, when I doa session and people don't put that camera on because I don't think and thenyou mentioned something. Is Not about how you feel, this about how youmake the other people feel and I just feel bad that people don't want tohelp me in that session. You know, if you do a training session withsomeone, we cannot want to eld the gays weeks with training. Ifyou were got on training, you know how difficult it is your training andto keep people on Gage. And I find it's a borderline rod really whenpeople don't thund that camera, because I cannot need that energy to get myenergy up Indus training session. So a way around that rays just to youknow, set the parameters before you even go on the calls. Just sayI have tried that. I'm gonna do it again. I'm gonna do itagain and again and again. Yeah, now, okay, so give peopleplenty of advance because you don't know what's...

...going on and people's homes right itcould be like yourself today having the cleaner hoovering behind you. So you know, there might be a reason, but I would, I would if you'regoing and you and you're making the effort to bring that energy to that trainingand you're dead rights. It's about respect, but make sure that you give peopleplenty of warning and advance. That camera is a necessity. Okay,yeah, make sense. Let's quish that. I've got for you is, couldyou suggest how we can connect emotionally with our clients to enns engagement anddifferent relationship? Virtually sure. So, as I mentioned earlier, there's fivedimpensions to building trust for me, and their credibility, reliability, respect,vulnerable and empathy. So they're the five. The first credibility is you know,you know your stuff. You're in the job because you've got there fora reason. You either have the qualifications or the experience to do your job, and that's the starting point of creating trust. Is I know what I'mdoing you can you can trust me that I will deliver a service to you. The second is reliability, and I think this is hugely important and wedon't we underestimate the power of reliability and this is the one thing that canreally a road trust. And it's the say do gap. That's what Icall it, and it's you say you're going to do something and then youdon't do it because like gets in the way. So, and it mightbe the smallest little thing, like I'll send you that report that I spokeabout and I'll send it to you by this evening, and then you comeoff this zoon call, you go straight onto the next one. You forgotto take a note of it and it's lost. So then, yesterm arethe client comes chasing you to have that report and that's not good. SoI would say don't say it if you're not going to do it. Iwould say, what's that expression? Under deliver and although promise, beliey promiseand under deliver in terms of I've got the leadership position, which is theteam about exactly that today. Brilliant. But yeah, I think it's messyif, you know, not meeting expectations or promoting something to someone. Ithink to be chased by your client is my Watt Mat now worst nightmare.I would absolutely do with it. It's...

...heard. For me is respect,so that's, you know, respect to me is trying to up on time, presenting yourself in the right way, making sure that your tune into theneeds of the individual. You've got your present and your intentional on the call. Then we've got vulnerability, and that, for me, is just it's aboutauthenticity. It's about, if I'm not being real with you today,Ray your feet through me in a nanosecond. Right. So it's about not puttingon a persona to get something off somebody. It's about showing up foryou, because I think you're in that job for a reason. Your personalitywill take you to the place that you need to go with Ye, andso I think authenticity is usually important. And then the last and the mostimportant empathy. And I think for salespeople, when we're talking to clients and wehear a client talk about a problem, will jump in straight because we loveproblems, because we're problem solvers. If I'm talking to you and Ihear something about okay, I'm just going to get in there now, becauseI know exactly how I'm going to solve raise problem and we miss the nuanceof the conversation because we're not listening. So for me empathy is about listeningand it's about not jumping in, not trying to solve problems, but it'sreally listening to what's going on and it's about understanding the impact on the individual. So if your client is coming and, like you said earlier, you knowyou're performing at eighty percent but they're not happy that you're not at ahundred percent, there's something behind that and it's not about a hundred percent,because they recognize that nobody will ever get to a hundred percent. But there'ssomething going on behind it for them and if you're listening, you'll find outwhat that impact is on the individual and on their organization. And I thinkif you can figure that out, then you start to create empathy with thatperson and you sit on the other side of the table with them, notopposite to them, and that's what you want to do. You Watch thesame side of the table as the client. So I think for me a relationshipsis that trust bit and empathy. Empathy and reliability probably the most twomost important element of building trust and once you have trust, you have thatrelationship and you'll be able to influence. Yeah, so nicely put Dadaab thatmusic to my hears. You know,...

...again, very common sense way toput it together and very illow quents and in the delivery. So now Ithink, I think that that's that's wonderful. Really appreciate that. Look becoming tothe NFL session today, which is a little bit unfortunate because I think, you know, it's we could have probably gone on far it a longer. Very excited about the conversation, Whiley so far, but if any ofour audience would let to engage Reasu or engage with step up step in postthrough the conversation, what is the best way to get old of you?So linkedin is the best way to contact me. So it's deered on againand cut a name. Step up step in, as you said, ifyou could direct messagely on Linkedin, that would be perfect. I'm still inthe process of building a website, so not quite there yet and my emailaddress is dear draft as step up Stependu ie on the F one. Manythings once again, lots of great and say to them it was great tohave under show my pleasure. Thank you, Ray. You've been listening to BEDBrevenue acceleration. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe tothe show in your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening.Until next time.

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