You are constantly being told to “sell higher” and involve economic buyers/execs in your deals.
It’s not an easy request for your champion – they risk their reputation when they connect you with an executive.
Here is a three step framework to build their confidence enough to schedule the exec meeting:
1) Have a valid and specific reason for your request to meet with the executive
“We want to get their feedback” is not sufficient.
2) Detail what will be expected from all attendees (not just an agenda – specifically what role each attendee will play)
Executives won’t attend meetings where they are passive attendees.
3) Share your plan to make sure it’s a successful meeting
De-risk the ask by showing a route to success.
Here’s what the request could look like:
“Tony, it’s been great working with you to identify how MongoDB could help your dev team improve efficiency.
Last thing we’d want to do, though, is begin a migration without a really clear picture of how our work would impact the broader engineering org – we want to optimize for the long-term.
Typically the CTO is the best person to speak to long-term architecture goals. We’d love to bring Angela onto the next call to bring her up to speed on our goals and planned implementation to see where she would recommend adjustments to fit with her vision.
We don’t want to waste her time: we’ll prepare an executive summary she can review before the call so we can make the most of the conversation. The main feedback we’ll want from her is related to the milestones we’ve discussed – now is the right time to change those definitions or timing.
To ensure the call is successful, we’ll also include an executive from the MongoDB solution architect team – that way, any questions she has can be addressed during the call.”
Requesting the meeting like this increases your chance of holding the meeting.
Building an effective executive summary increases the chance of holding a successful meeting.