Customer Service – Overcoming Objections.
Roche Diagnostics Executive Leadership was
looking for a way to help their sales staff overcome customer
objections, build a positive communication environment and
drive sales in a fiercely competitive market.
We used a two-pronged approach to help the Roche sales force
develop unique ways to deal with customer objections. In Phase
One, we initiated a “Yes… and” environment,
one where attendees were asked to restructure their view of
customer objections, truly seeing them as opportunities to
build stronger customer relationships instead of as a negative
wedge that drives both sides apart. Creating a “Yes…
and” environment also addresses how people listen without
judgment, allowing them to set aside result based thinking.
Phase Two (we call it Shoulda Said) involved
the use of a simple desk bell while role-playing customer
service scenarios. This Out of the Blue method playfully forces
participants to exhaust all pre-planned or “textbook”
responses, leaving the sales person “empty” and
in a place where true creativity begins.
The salespeople embraced the challenge and quickly recognized
the potential of this exercise. They became more actively
involved in the communication process, their listening skills
became markedly heightened and their responses were more direct
to the concern. They exhibited an attitude focused on true
problem solving and not problem deflection.
Based on post convention attendee evaluations, Roche Diagnostics
highlighted these exercises as of great value to their staff.
KAISER PERMANENTE HEALTH PLAN & HOSPITALS - CALIFORNIA
Kaiser Permanente, health care provider for over 6 million
Californians needed a series of programs to re-energize their
top 300 leaders.
Out of the Blue researched the specific challenges of health
industry leaders and developed a custom full day Keynote and
workshop program entitled Spontaneous Combustion
Igniting the Spirit of Leadership. The highly
interactive presentation included a custom comedy sketch,
which illuminated over seriousness, and linear
thinking. Out of the Blue then conducted exercises with the
leaders based on improvisation theater principles, which focused
on play/work balance, saying Yes
create enthusiastic and positive professional and personal
relationships, and developing in the moment interactive
The Kaiser Permanente leaders reacted positively to the
message and engaged fully in the workshop exercises. According
to client feedback, the presentation
positive changes in team interactions. These messages have
a strong impact in improving the work environment at the same
time our members are the recipients of improved service delivery.
Out of the Blue was brought back for presentations to Kaiser
Permanentes Northern & Southern Californias
senior nurse manager teams.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION
The Federal Highway Administration needed an energizing
keynote that focused on new leadership practices for 250 of
their leaders from across the country. They wanted their group,
largely made up of people with an engineering background,
to be able to think on their feet, approach problems more
creatively and have more fun! Enter: Out of the Blue
Out of the Blue opened their keynote program with a custom
sketch utilizing a mock speaker to outline radical (and ridiculous)
changes in the highway department. They were instantly hooked,
nodding in agreement and laughing throughout the entire opening.
Through improvisation exercises, stories, improvisation performances
and a customized game show, we involved each participant in
the learning and the fun. The goals were to show the FHWA
leaders that success in business demands strong connections
with people, and relies on building strong, in the moment
relationships. In addition, by using the principles of improvisation
they could greatly enhance their communication and creativity
RESULT: We immediately received a letter from the Department
of Transportation, which said;
to see the concepts
in use so quickly speaks volumes to the effectiveness of your
your extensive efforts to customize your
presentation and incorporate FHWA lingo in your exercises
was very impressive.
We were requested back for an encore presentation this year.